Olivia de Havilland, One of Hollywood’s Last Golden Age Stars, Is Dead at 104

     July 26, 2020

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A Hollywood legend has passed. Olivia de Havilland, best known for her roles in Gone With the Wind and The Adventures of Robin Hood, has died at age 104. De Havilland was one of the last living stars of Hollywood’s Golden Age, rising to stardom in the first decades of the 20th century.

De Havilland’s publicist, Lisa Goldberg, announced on Sunday the late actress died peacefully and of natural causes in her home in Paris (via The Hollywood Reporter). De Havilland had been living in Paris for more than 60 years, making it her home as her career slowed down. The Gone With the Wind star had recently celebrated her 104th birthday on July 1. Her public appearances had lessened in recent years, with one her last outings occurring in February 2011 at the Cesar Awards in France.

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Image via 20th Century Studios

De Havilland’s first onscreen role was in 1935’s Alibi Ike, with notable appearances opposite Errol Flynn in Robin Hood and Captain Blood. However, her big breakout role came at the end of the ’30s in Gone With the Wind as Scarlett O’Hara’s (Vivien Leigh) sweet, self-effacing cousin Melanie. From there, de Havilland graced the screen with lead roles in My Cousin RachelDark Mirror, and Lady in a Cage. De Havilland is also a two-time Oscar-winner for her performances in 1946’s To Each His Own and 1949’s The Heiress. De Havilland’s last roles happened more than 30 years ago, with the star taking on smaller roles like the 1988 TV movie The Woman He Loved and the 1986 mini-series Anastasia: The Mystery of Anna. In addition to her onscreen appearances, de Havilland may best be remembered for some high points — the infamous De Havilland Decision, which put an end to restrictive studio contracts, and becoming the first female president of a Cannes Film Festival jury — as well as some not-so-high points, like her highly-publicized feud with younger sister Joan Fontaine.

With an onscreen career spanning more than 50 years, 60 credits, and including numerous honors to her name, it’s fair to say de Havilland’s impact on Hollywood will be remembered as important and powerful.

Allie Gemmill is the Weekend Contributing Editor for Collider. You can follow them on Twitter @_matineeidle.

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