Joan fontaine y olivia de havilland

The rivalry between the actresses included their childhood, careers, love lives and even the Academy Awards.

Estás mirando: Joan fontaine y olivia de havilland


The rivalry between the actresses encompassed their childhood, careers, love lives and even los Academy Awards.

Olivia ese Havilland y Joan fontain were born quince months apart and both discovered success as actresses in Hollywood's golden Age. But instead of bringing lock together, this similarities exacerbated uno rivalry the sprang increase in childhood y lasted uno lifetime. Yet also though they were rivals who became estranged, Olivia and Joan managed to respect and even excellent each various other — in ns feud, you always care what the other is increase to, that course.


Olivia y Joan to be childhood rivals

Olivia y Joan didn't gain along together children — younger sisters Joan feel Olivia was favored by your mother. Olivia as soon as said, "Our biggest trouble was that we had to share un room." despite they go occasionally juego together, your clashes to be frequent, featuring slaps (Joan) y hair-pulling (Olivia). Joan likewise accused Olivia that tearing up her outgrown clothes since she didn't desire them to go to her younger sister, and also of break Fontaine's collarbone as soon as she tried come pull she older sisters into uno swimming pool.


A profile of los two in LIFE newspaper in mil novecientos cuarenta y dos revealed one bajo point in the relationship: "At los age of 9, Joan decided she would kill her sister. She believed it all fuera de carefully: she would certainly let Olivia hit her once, y then again, in silence. But after the third blow, she would certainly plug Olivia between ns eyes." Joan's plan was to plead self-defense, yet fortunately for american cinema, she didn't go through with it. Instead, the rancor between the two sisters would merely take different forms as they thrived older.


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Olivia de Havilland y Joan fontain at a party in Saratoga, California, circa 1934

Photo: Getty Images


Joan initially lived in Olivia's zero in Hollywood

When Joan changed home desde spending un couple of years con their ex-pat dad in Japan, she uncovered her sisters on ns verge of uno career in Hollywood y decided she wanted los same thing. Olivia rather tried to send Joan to finishing school. Olivia later on admitted to Vanity Fair, "I suppose the way identificación saw it then to be that identificación wanted Hollywood as my domain, y I wanted smo Francisco culture to be hers." however Joan insisted to her older sibling, "I want to carry out what you're doing."

So Joan involved live con Olivia and their mother in Hollywood. But Olivia, that was debajo contract with Warner Brothers, didn't want Joan to job-related at ns same estudio as her. Y as she thought there was room for just one del Havilland in Hollywood, she motivated her sister to use uno different final name. Joan didn't favor this, however when a fortune teller advised her the she needed un stage name ending in "e" to accomplish success, she started using Fontaine, her stepfather's name.


Yet the name adjust remained uno source that bitterness for Joan, who later on said, "Joan Fontaine. Identificación don't recognize who she is." She additionally hated having actually to be her sister's chauffeur, driving her to y from ns studio, even though Olivia had provided Joan what to live in ese Angeles together she tried to launch an acting career.


The sisters came to be Hollywood rivals

While Olivia uncovered success co-starring with Errol Flynn in Captain Blood (1935) and The Adventures the Robin Hood (1938), Joan flopped with Fred Astaire in A Damsel in Distress (1937). Joan did manage to marry one of her sister's old boyfriends, tying the knot with Brian Aherne in 1939. At los time ns woman acquiring married was watched as a way of completing her life, therefore marrying before her older sister was uno coup.

Olivia's job reached new heights once she play Melanie in Gone With los Wind (1939), and Joan's took off once she starred in Rebecca (1940). Still, los sisters didn't let ns other taste success there is no claiming part credit. Joan stated that once she'd been turned debajo for Melanie because that being "too stylish," she'd said her sister for the part. Y when Olivia's Warner hermano contract retained her representar starring in Rebecca, she i agreeed Joan would be perfect for the role due to the fact that her sister to be blonde and co-star Laurence Olivier had dark hair.

The sisters' rivalry played fuera in former of ns world at los Academy Awards ceremony in 1942. Olivia y Joan were both nominated for best Actress, Olivia for Hold back The Dawn and Joan because that Suspicion. Olivia was expected to win, however Joan received ns Oscar instead. She then appeared to disregard her sister's congratulations as soon as she saw collect her statuette.

When Olivia to be triumphant herself on Oscar night in 1947, winning ns Best Actress Academy Award because that To each His Own, she, in turn, snubbed she sister. But this wasn't exactly payback for Joan's previously snubbing — instead, it was reembolso for Joan's sniping. Delaware Olivia had married novelist Marcus Goodrich, Joan had actually said, "All me gustaría know about him is the he’s had 4 wives and written one book. Too poor it’s not the other way around."


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Joan Fontaine and Olivia después Havilland during Marlene Dietrich's party in September 1967 at ns Rainbow Room in nuevo York City

Photo: Ron Galella/WireImage


Olivia and Joan were estranged as soon as Joan died

Olivia and Joan had actually some closer moment in los years to come, together as once they attended un party because that Marlene Dietrich in 1967. Yet when your mother ended up being ill with terminal cancer, Olivia visited take care of she while Joan to be on tourism with uno play. After their mother died in 1975, Joan accused her sister of not helping her see their mother, and of no inviting her to the monumento service (though she go attend).

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In Joan's 1978 memoir, No Bed of Roses (which Olivia referred to as "No shred of Truth"), she didn't hold espalda from sharing her resentments toward her sister, together as los "paralysis" that overcame her once she won her Oscar, giving her flashbacks to their childhood animosity. In an interview con People to promote ns book, Joan said, "You can divorce her sister and also your husbands. Me gustaría don’t check out her at all y I don’t intend to." She likewise declared, "I gained married first, acquired an Academy award first, had a child first. If identificación die, she’ll it is in furious, because again I’ll have got there first!"

At one Oscars reunion in 1979, the two were inserted on separate termina of the stage. Ten años later, Joan changed hotel rooms once she found out she was booked siguiente to Olivia's. But, contradictory to what Joan had expected, Olivia expressed her sadness delaware her sister's death in 2013.


In one interview for she 100th birthday in 2016, Olivia addressed her relationship with Joan, saying, "A feud implies proceeding hostile command between dos parties. Identificación cannot think that a single instance wherein identificación initiated enemy behavior." Olivia additionally stated she had sometimes to be "defensive," y added, "On mine part, the was always loving, but sometimes estranged and, in the later years, severed."


From historical figures to present-day celebrities, Sara Kettler loves to write about people who"ve led fascinating lives.


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