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For the Oni Press comic book, see The Leading Man (comics)

The Leading Man is a 1996 British romantic drama film directed by John Duigan. It premiered at the Toronto Film Festival in 1996 but was not released in the United States until March 1998. The film is set in London in the winter.


A brash American actor, Robin Grange, goes to London to feature in a major new play. The playwright of the production, Felix Webb, is having an intense affair with the leading lady, Hilary Rule. His wife of fourteen years, Eleanor, suspects that her husband is cheating and cannot suppress her rage. Robin comes up with an intriguing plan; to seduce Felix's elegant wife to end hassling her husband. In desperation, Felix agrees, but soon faces a dilemma in that he feels increasingly jealous of Robin's attempts to seduce his willing wife, especially when he charms (and attempts to seduce) Hilary and the other members of the production and becomes too popular at Felix's expense. Felix is caught in a web of deceit and jealousy, prompting him to seek revenge on the opening night of his new production.



The film currently holds a 57% fresh rating on [1] Whilst sighting enjoying performances by most of the cast, critics have given the film mixed reviews, Film 4 arguing whether it is considered to be a comedy, drama or both, with neither making a large impression. [2] The New York Times reviewed the film as 'watchable without gripping.' [3].


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