Olivia de Havilland is not done feuding with FX over her portrayal by Catherine Zeta-Jones in Ryan Murphy’s Feud.
Earlier this summer, de Havilland filed suit against the channel and Ryan Murphy Productions. She’s the only living person who appeared as a character on the show, and according to the Hollywood Reporter, she alleged infringement of common law right of publicity, invasion of privacy and unjust enrichment. She said her depiction hurt her “professional reputation for integrity, honesty, generosity, self-sacrifice and dignity,” and she wanted the suit fast-tracked under a statute specially for plaintiffs over 70.
Now Deadline reports that FX recently moved to strike de Havilland’s suit, and de Havilland has fired back:
“Defendants’ Motion has strengthened Miss de Havilland’s resolve to stand up to big Hollywood and fight for her rights, and the rights of all others in such circumstances,” de Havilland’s lawyer Suzelle Smith said Tuesday after FX filed a motion in Los Angeles Superior Court to gut the third amended complaint of the actor’s lawsuit originally filed in June.
“If Defendants’ view of the law were to prevail, then the California statute giving a celebrity the exclusive right to control and profit from her name and identity, and protect her reputation, would be meaningless,” Smith added. She also called the motion “weak” and throwing “mud on a great lady.”
FX, for their part, said that,
“By alleging that Feud casts her in a false light and violates her right of publicity, Olivia de Havilland’s meritless lawsuit seeks to impinge on Defendants’ First Amendment right to create expressive works about matters of public interest,” reads the dismissal motion (read it here). Added FX’s lawyers from Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp Llp: “The Court should grant Defendants’ motion to strike in its entirety and award fees. “
“Feud is a social commentary on Hollywood’s history of sexism, misogyny, and media manipulation, issues that still plague Hollywood today,” said the FX team.
Before tangling with 101-year-old de Havilland, always remember that she feuded with her own sister for decades and proceed with the according caution.