Film legend Olivia de Havilland sues FX, Ryan Murphy over depiction in ‘Feud: Bette and Joan’

Credit: Getty Images

Credit: Getty Images

Legendary Hollywood actress Olivia de Havilland, who just turned 101 years old on Saturday, filed suit Friday in Los Angeles Superior Court over the unauthorized use of her identity in Ryan Murphy's FX series "Feud: Bette and Joan."

The limited series chronicled the decades-long bitter  rivalry between award-winning classic Hollywood-era actresses Joan Crawford and Bette Davis. The eight episode miniseries, created by Ryan Murphy, Jaffe Cohen and Michael Zam, depicted a young Olivia de Havilland, played by Catherine Zeta-Jones, to explain aspects of the dispute throughout the series.

Credit: Frazer Harrison

Credit: Frazer Harrison

De Havilland, who lives in France, said through a statement by her attorneys that FX never asked to use her name or identity and did not compensate her, the Los Angeles Times reported.

The statement said "The FX series puts words in the mouth of Miss de Havilland which are inaccurate and contrary to the reputation she has built over an 80-year professional life, specifically refusing to engage in gossipmongering about other actors in order to generate media attention for herself," according to the Times.

FX and those involved in the project put de Havilland in “a false light to sensationalize the series,” the statement continued, noting that everyone else portrayed in the series is dead.

Actresses Jessica Lange and Susan Sarandon played Joan Crawford and Bette Davis, respectively.

FX and Ryan Murphy have not yet commented on the lawsuit or de Havilland’s allegations.

Why did Susan Sarandon agree to take on the role of the iconic Bette Davis? Read more in her exclusive interview with The Hollywood Reporter.

Posted by FEUD: Bette and Joan on Tuesday, June 20, 2017

About the Author