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Grace of My Heart (1996)

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An aspiring singer, Denise Waverly/Edna Buxton, sacrifices her own singing career to write hit songs that launch the careers of other singers. The film follows her life from her first break... See full summary »



3 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Denise Waverly / Edna Buxton
Sissy Boyd ...
Dress Saleswoman
Mrs. Buxton
Jill Sobule ...
Singing Contestant
Jennifer Leigh Warren ...
Doris Shelley
M.C. at Talent Show
Audition Record Producer
Natalie Venetia Belcon ...
Kathy Barbour ...
Sha Sha
Joel Millner
Waitress in Diner
Eric Jerome Kirkland ...
Irving Washington III ...
Stylette (as Irving Eugene Washington III)
Kurt Jackson ...
Michael Angelo Saulsberry ...
Stylette (as Michael Saulsberry)


An aspiring singer, Denise Waverly/Edna Buxton, sacrifices her own singing career to write hit songs that launch the careers of other singers. The film follows her life from her first break, through the pain of rejection from the recording industry and a bad marriage, to her final triumph. Written by John Deming <jfdeming@sprynet.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


For years her songs brought fame to other people. Then she found her own voice.


Comedy | Drama | Music

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language, and for some sexuality and drug content | See all certifications »




Release Date:

13 September 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

A Sombra de Um Génio  »

Box Office


$5,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$173,654 (USA) (13 September 1996)


$617,632 (USA) (4 October 1996)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The character of Kelly Porter, the female bubblegum pop singer who was in the closet (played by Bridget Fonda) was inspired by Lesley Gore who actually helped compose some of the music in the movie. At the time of Gore's 2015 death, she had been with her romantic partner, Lois Sasson, for 33 years. See more »


Jay Phillips' sunglasses during TV interview. See more »


Edna Buxton: Mother, the dress doesn't fit.
Mrs. Buxton: The dress fits the occasion. It's you that doesn't fit.
See more »


Little Trouble Girl
Written and Performed by Sonic Youth
Courtesy of DGC Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Interesting & Nostalgic...
26 April 2003 | by (Florida) – See all my reviews

"Grace Of My Heart" is similar to "Valley Of The Dolls" because the characters, in both films, are "loosely based" on actual people showing their rise & fall in show business. Illeana Douglas plays singer/songwriter Edna Buxton who becomes Denise Waverly. She's based on Carol Klein who became Carole King. A New Yorker who churned out hit after hit in the famous Brill Building. Where some of the action in "Grace Of My Heart" also takes place. John Turturro is based on record producer Phil Spector (complete with bad toupee & the wearing of sunglasses indoors). Matt Dillon fronts "The Riptides" (The Beach Boys). "The Luminaires" are based on girl groups like The Shirelles & The Chiffons. Bridget Fonda portrays "teenaged" angst-ridden, big-haired, bubblegum idol & lesbian Kelly Porter. There's no question that she's based on Lesley Gore. Interestingly, Lesley Gore wrote the tune Bridget lip synch's in the film, "My Secret Love" (which is a homage to Lesley's "You Don't Own Me"). The music in this movie is very good & has that 60's, 70's feel to it. I just wish the soundtrack album had included the tunes "Hey There" & "Grace Of My Heart" by Kristen Vigard who did the vocals for Illeana Douglas. If you like nostalgic movies about pop music like "The Idolmaker", "Grease", "That Thing You Do" & "Hairspray" you'll like this too.

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