A Life in Quotes: Olivia de Havilland

Olivia de Havilland is the oldest living recipient of an Academy Award, having last won in 1950 for her role in The Heiress. We're celebrating one of Hollywood's last great icons with a look back at her life in quotes.

Image via Life
Image via Life Magazine


“Playing good girls in the 30s was difficult, when the fad was to play bad girls. Actually I think playing bad girls is a bore; I have always had more luck with good girl roles because they require more from an actress.”




“Famous people feel that they must perpetually be on the crest of the wave, not realising that it is against all the rules of life. You can't be on top all the time, it isn't natural."




“Of course we fight. What sisters don't battle?"




“I would prefer to live forever in perfect health, but if I must at some time leave this life, I would like to do so ensconced on a chaise longue, perfumed, wearing a velvet robe and pearl earrings, with a flute of champagne beside me and having just discovered the answer to the last problem in a British cryptic crossword."



errol flynn
With leading man Errol Flynn in The Adventures of Robin Hood


“There certainly is such a thing as screen chemistry, although I don't believe you find it frequently."





"I don't need a fantasy life as once I did. That is the life of the imagination that I had a great need for. Films were the perfect means for satisfying that need."



gone with the wind
In costume for Gone With the Wind


"It [Gone With the Wind] will go on forever, and how thrilling that is. It has this universal life, this continuing life. Every nation has experienced war and defeat and renaissance. So all people can identify with the characters. Not only that, it's terribly well constructed. Something happens every three minutes, and it keeps you on your toes and the edge of your seat, which is quite a feat, I must say."




“I love living among the French. They are very independent, intelligent, well educated and creative. They are a people full of feeling, which they express. They're a vivacious people. Well, they're Celts, you see."




“I don't feel the cold. It's my British blood!"



Image via Olivia de Havilland


"One must take what comes, with laughter."


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