Dame Olivia de Havilland takes fight with Ryan Murphy over FX's Feud to the Supreme Court

By DailyMail.com Reporter

  • De Havilland, 102, filed a lawsuit against Ryan Murphy and FX in June 2017
  • She claims the director and the network never asked to use her name or likeness in 'Feud: Bette and Joan' about Bette Davis and Joan Crawford
  • Catherine-Zeta Jones portrayed de Havilland in a recurring role in the series
  • An LA court agreed in September 2017 to take her lawsuit to trial but, in March 2018, an appellate court agreed unanimously to dismiss the lawsuit

Dame Olivia de Havilland is taking her feud with producer Ryan Murphy to the US Supreme Court.

The 102-year-old claims Murphy and network FX never asked to use her name or likeness for their 2017 eight-episode series 'Feud: Bette and Joan' about legendary actresses Bette Davis and Joan Crawford, reported Deadline. Catherine Zeta-Jones portrayed the two-time Oscar winner, who was a friend of Davis and participated in a 1970s documentary on Crawford, in a recurring role.

De Havilland filed her original lawsuit in June 2017 claiming that Zeta-Jones's portrayal of her as 'b----h' had damaged the actress's 'professional reputation for integrity, honesty, generosity, self-sacrifice and dignity'.

In September 2017, Deadline reported that LA Superior Court Judge Holly Kendig had agreed to let de Havilland's case proceed to trial. But higher courts agreed with Murphy and FX that they were protected by the First Amendment.

In March 2018, an appellate court agreed unanimously to dismiss the lawsuit.

Then, in July, the California Supreme Court rejected de Havilland's request to have judges review her case.

In the petition filed on Friday, the actress asked that the Supreme Court overturn the California court's decision.

'We must persevere and speak truth to power,' de Havilland said in a statement from her home in Paris.

'The fight is itself important to the principle of honesty, so much in need today in the face of deliberate public confusion for selfish agendas.'

De Havilland's attorney Suzelle Smith told Deadline that the California decision 'is a radical departure from traditional First Amendment precedent and benefits no group other than those who seek to use the names and identities of others in untrue and salacious "historical dramas" for their own profit.'

The actress made her film debut in 1935's A Midsummer Night's Dream and received her big break just three years late as Maid Marion in 1938's The Adventures of Robin Hood opposite Errol Flynn as the titular chracter.

De Havilland's most famous role is that of Melanie Hamilton in 1939's Gone with the Wind, with her performance being praised by critics.

The film went on to garner 10 Academy Awards, and de Havilland received her first nomination for Best Supporting Actress.

She won Best Actress in a Leading Role in 1946 for To Each His Own and again in 1949 for The Heiress.

De Havilland and her sister Joan Fontaine are the only siblings to have each won an Academy Award in a lead acting category.