Olivia de Havilland from ‘Gone with the Wind’ is now 102-years-old, and gorgeous as everMarch 30, 2019
Even for those of us who weren’t around in 1939, we have all heard of the movie Gone with the Wind. The epic historical romance was the highest-earning film made up to that point and held the record for over 25 years.
Lead female actress Vivien Leigh was selected for the role of Scarlett O’Hara among 1,400 women. The movie was delayed for two years so producers could secure Clark Gable for the lead male role of Rhett Butler.
Olivia de Havilland received an academy award nomination for her portrayal of gentle and courageous Melanie Hamilton Wilkes in the movie. Although her character dies at the end of the movie Olivia lives on.
As the legendary movie marks its 80th birthday this year Olivia will celebrate her 103rd birthday.
Gone with the Wind was set in the American south against the backdrop of the American Civil War where Olivia played a conflicting love interest for lead character Scarlett O’Hara.
After the movie, British-American actress Olivia went on to appear in more than 50 movies and has received many honors for her services to the big screen.
‘The most gratifying of birthday presents’
Before her 101st birthday, on July 1, 2017, the two-time Oscar winner, who retired from acting about three decades ago, became the oldest person ever to be appointed a “Dame Commander” when she attended Queen Elizabeth II’s birthday.
Being the oldest person ever to receive the honor, she told People’s magazine that she was “extremely proud.”
“To receive this honor as my 101st birthday approaches are the most gratifying of birthday presents,” Olivia said.
The actress, who was born in Japan to British parents and has American, British and French citizenship, made her stage debut as a child in a production of “A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream.”
She won her first Oscar for Best Actress for her role into Each His Own and three years later in 1950, she won her 2nd Oscar for Best Actress for her performance in The Heiress.
Olivia recalled the moment when she helped Clark Gable through a difficult scene in Gone with the Wind when he was supposed to cry after the death of his on-screen daughter.
“And would you believe Clark almost quit?” Olivia said, according to an article in The Vintage News.
‘Most memorable scenes’
“It was all about one scene. I remember talking to Clark about the scene when he is supposed to cry, after the death of his daughter. He was worried: you see, he had never cried on the screen before. He thought it was not masculine to cry.
“I remember I said, ‘Tears denote the strength of character, not weakness. Crying makes you intensely human.’ He agreed, rehearsed it, and it turned out to be one of the most memorable scenes in the movie.”
The 102-year-old said the secret to her long and healthy life was “the three L’s – love, laughter, and light,” according to Vanity Fair.
She also does the New York Times crossword puzzle every day, a habit that started when she was a teenager.
We wish screen legend Olivia many more happy birthdays to come.