FEUD: And The Winner Is… (The Oscars Of 1963)
April 4, 2017 5:44 AM - Season 1, Episode 5 - Subscribe

With the Oscars approaching, and Bette considered a favorite with a chance to make history as the first actress with three Oscars, Joan and Hedda set out to undermine her chances.

Bette seeks comfort and support from her friend Olivia de Havilland. Hedda calls around to likely voters talking shit about Bette, while Joan makes glowing comments about everyone but Bette. In the final "fuck you," Joan arranges to accept the award should either Anne Bancroft or Geraldine Page win, since they won't be there. In the end, Bancroft wins, and Joan makes quite a spectacle of herself accepting the award dressed all in silver.
posted by dnash (11 comments total)
I wish they could have held that steadycam shot just a little bit longer. But I've been enjoying this show because Jessica Lange is so good as Crawford.
posted by Catblack at 9:17 AM on April 4, 2017

The mentions of the de Havilland/Fontaine feud kinda made me wonder if the show mightn't take them up as a story sometime in the future. Though I also wonder if they'd want to wait for Olivia to finally die. :)
posted by dnash at 10:47 AM on April 4, 2017 [1 favorite]

(Oh, I was just Wikipedia-ing Olivia. Though the show has her tossing the script for Lady In A Cage in the trash, in life she took the part.)
posted by dnash at 11:28 AM on April 4, 2017 [2 favorites]

There were a lot of shots of women in mirrors in the first half of this. A lot.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 12:03 PM on April 4, 2017

Hypocrisy is a tribute vice pays to virtue. —François de La Rochefoucauld via Hedda Hopper.
posted by Stanczyk at 12:49 PM on April 4, 2017

Just found this in a comment on the A.V. Club. It's a Variety interview with Ryan Murphy about this episode. There's this wonderful detail: the bit he wrote about Bette Davis holding her Oscars, which made the gold plating fade on one of them, is real and comes from an interview Murphy had with Davis shortly before she died:
There’s that speech that Susan gives as Bette and she’s looking at her two Academy Awards. That scene is plucked from my four-hour interview that I had with Bette Davis right before she died, and the first thing she said to me was, “Do you want to see my Oscars and hold them?” I was like 20 and fresh off the boat from Indiana. I said, “Sure,” and I did notice that one seemed a little bit more tarnished than the other. She told me that she would hold it when she was watching television and it was almost like a pet and it means a lot to her because it reminded her of one night when she was just universally acclaimed and loved, accepted by the world. What she said never really left my memory. I was trying to figure out maybe a way to write something about that or that idea, because I thought that was a very moving thing. So finally when I did the show I was like, “Hot damn, I get to use that moment that I had with her.”
posted by dnash at 4:43 PM on April 4, 2017 [6 favorites]

This series is definitely keeping me interested, although the "this industry sucks for women" etc etc is getting a bit over done. I mean, I think we get it, right?

They both killed it for big Oscar acceptance scene - wow!

It will be interesting to see if Jessica Lange and/or Susan Sarandon get nominated for an EMMY for their roles...
posted by foxhat10 at 9:16 AM on April 5, 2017

I think it's more than "Hollywood sucks for women," I think it's also about what that suckage does to women, and whether in the face of it they choose to support each other or fight each other for the scraps.

There was another article I saw yesterday (it might be the Variety one I linked to above or one in Vanity Fair) where Bette Davis later noted that both she and Joan had a financial stake in the movie, and had she won it probably would've meant another million dollars for the movie. Joan's desperation for the award cost them both money. That's fighting for the scraps and calling it dinner instead of banding together to fight the system.
posted by dnash at 12:02 PM on April 5, 2017 [3 favorites]

I'm really enjoying this series and I think both Jessica Lange and Susan Sarandon are excellent, but it's Judy Davis who's really standing out for me. She's always been one of my favourite actors and her portrayal of Hedda is just so spot on.
posted by h00py at 6:36 PM on April 5, 2017

Agreed. Stanley Tucci is particularly good as the infamous Jack Warner, and Alfred Molina makes everything he's in better, in general.

They may be over-egging the 'Hollywood sucks for women' message but I'm finding the feminist slant of this series (this one was particularly overt) a welcome panacea. Whole thing is intelligently written and directed, I was afraid it would be cheap, look cheap, and go for the sensationalism; instead the production values and handling of the material has been surprisingly impressive. There's also a ton of humor (case in point: next episode is titled "Hagsploitation").

Ryan Murphy wasn't on my radar until this series.
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome at 8:43 PM on April 7, 2017

Man I don't know what this says about me but I've been Team Davis from the very beginning and this episode in particular made me really hate Crawford.

One of the things that makes this show great are the ancillary characters, and they really got a chance to shine here. Also, that continuous scene as Joan walks through all the rooms backstage at the Oscars was just glorious.

In a previous thread someone said the '70s interviews with De Havilland et al were distracting and didn't add much to the story. I tend to agree, and then I read that Murphy might be considering De Havilland and her sister Joan Fontaine's rivalry for a future season of Feud. (Season 2 will reportedly focus on Charles and Diana.)

The few episodes of AHS I've seen (Murder House, I think) were waaaaaay over-acted, so I am happy to see this shpw has juuuust the right amount of camp. Loving it.
posted by Brittanie at 11:28 AM on April 11, 2017

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