Olivia de Havilland SCOTUS, not be getting her day in the nation.
With no explanation, the U.S. Supreme Court today rejected the two-time Oscar winner’s petition for review of her nearly two year battle over the depiction of her in FX’s Feud: Bette & Joan.
Which means the 102-year old cinema icon looks to be out of legal options and a California Court of Appeal ruling of last July ending the dispute will stand.
Having suffered a series of legal setbacks and defeats since first filing her lawsuit in June 2017, de Havilland in early October of last year sought to have Chief Justice John Roberts and the others eight justices on the bench re-examine what jurisdictions in the Golden State have decided on the matter.
“We and Miss de Havilland are very disappointed that the US Supreme Court passed on this opportunity to confirm that the First Amendment does not protect the publication of intentional lies in any medium, including so called docudramas,” said the Paris-based de Havilland’s attorneys at LA’s Horwarth & Smith on Monday of the review rejection. “The California Court of Appeal has turned the First Amendment upside down and without doubt more harm to individuals and public deception will result,” they added for their client.
“One day someone else who is wronged for the sake of Hollywood profits will have the courage to stand on the shoulders of Miss de Havilland and fight for the right to defend their good name and legacy against intentional, unconsented exploitation and falsehoods.”
“Miss de Havilland hopes she will live to see the day when such justice is done,” the lawyers declared in ringing tones.
Initially seeking wide-ranging damages and to basically kill off the Ryan Murphy EP’d FX anthology series with an injunction, de Havilland declared in her initial June 30, 2017 lawsuit that the “bitch”-spouting portrayal of her by Catherine Zeta-Jones in Feud damaged the Gone With the Wind actress “professional reputation for integrity, honesty, generosity, self-sacrifice and dignity.”
In her jury-seeking complaint, The Heiress actress also asserted that FX, Murphy and producers Fox 21 TV never even sought nor obtained her permission to depict her or use her name in their eight-episode series about the Hollywood trench warfare between Joan Crawford and Bette Davis. Among other issues, de Havilland’s lawsuit specifically targeted the alleged backstage drama involving her depicted in Feud‘s “And the Winner Is …” fifth episode about the 1963 Oscars.
Fox 21 TV did not respond for request for comment on the SCOTUS decision this morning.The much desired victory for FX, Murphy and the studio comes mere hours after the now Netflix bound producer’s The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story scored big wins at the Golden Globes last night.