In a complaint filed Friday in L.A. County Superior Court, de Havilland claims she has built a reputation for integrity and dignity by refraining from gossip and other unkind, ill-mannered behavior - but the series opens with Zeta Jones doing an interview as de Havilland and creates the impression that she was a hypocrite who sold gossip to promote herself. The suit further claims, "Olivia De Havilland did not give her permission for FX Defendants to use her name, identity, or likeness in "Feud" or any of the promotional materials used by the FX Defendants to advertise themselves, their products and services".
Olivia de Havilland turns 101 tomorrow.
Oscar-winning actress Olivia de Havilland is suing the makers of a television show which she says portrayed her as a "petty gossip".
Olivia says that she has a reputation for not gossiping or expressing an unkind behavior, but she was portrayed in the opposite way on Feud.
The show starred Jessica Lange and Susan Sarandon as Joan Crawford and Bette Davis, depicting their rivalry during and after the production of the iconic 1962 film What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?
In representing Ms.de Havilland, attorney Suzelle Smith states that lines spoken by Catherine Zeta-Jones, acting as Olivia in Feud, were all false.
The 100-year-old actress, who played Melanie Hamilton in the iconic "Gone with the Wind", is also irked with the show's depiction of her calling her sister Joan Fontaine a "bitch" and commenting at the 1963 Academy Awards that Frank Sinatra had drunk all the alcohol in the backstage lounge. Vanity Fair points out that Bette Davis' daughter, portrayed in the show by Kiernan Shipka, is also alive.
Now, de Havilland is saying in her lawsuit that the network and its partners placed her in "a false light" to sensationalize the series - "ignoring (her) interests entirely".
Two weeks ago, de Havilland received quite a historic honor. Rather, the actress believes that FX's actions raise important principles that go beyond her personally, and affect other celebrities.
Earlier this year, the producer acknowledged in an interview with the Hollywood Reporter that he did not contact de Havilland about Feud.