Mother: Lillian (Ruse) de Havilland, an actress
Marriages: Pierre Galante (1955-1979, divorce); Marcus Goodrich (1946-1953, divorce)
Children: with Pierre Galante: Gisele, 1956; with Marcus Goodrich: Benjamin, 1949-1991
Both parents were British.
She is the older sister of actress Joan Fontaine.
In 1943, De Havilland sued Warner Brothers for unfair labor practices and won. Her actions helped lead to the demise of the Hollywood “studio system,” with rigid studio control over an actor’s career.
Due to de Havilland’s long-standing feud with sister Joan Fontaine, the siblings were seated on opposite ends of the stage during an Oscar winners’ reunion in 1979.
She has received five
Academy Award nominations and two wins and one Emmy nomination
1934 – Wins a scholarship to attend Mills College in Oakland, California. Abandons college plans and makes stage debut as Hermia in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” at the Hollywood Bowl, appearing with Mickey Rooney.
1935 – In her film debut, reprises the role of Hermia in “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” for Warner Brothers and signs a long-term contract.
1941 – Nominated for a Best Actress Academy Award for “Hold Back the Dawn,” but loses to her sister, Joan Fontaine for “Suspicion.”
1947 – Wins Best Actress Academy Award for “To Each His Own.”
1950 – Wins Best Actress Academy Award for “The Heiress.”
1962 – “Every Frenchman Has One,” her book on French culture and tradition is published.
June 15, 2006 – A career tribute from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is held in Los Angeles.
September 9, 2010 – President Nicolas Sarkozy
of France presents de Havilland with the Legion of Honour at Elysee Palace.