Pearls, gloves and statement earrings: Olivia de Havilland, who died July 26 at the age of 104, lived a life of great style — as these two photos, taken more than a half-century apart (in 1963 and 2016), show. One of the last remaining figures of Old Hollywood, de Havilland was best known as Melanie Wilkes in “Gone with the Wind” and Maid Marian in “The Adventures of Robin Hood” opposite Errol Flynn, but was also a two-time Oscar winner, for “To Each His Own” and “The Heiress.” Off-screen, she was famous for bringing down the Hollywood studio system, fighting for the right to choose her own roles and ultimately prevailing in a landmark 1945 court decision still known as the De Havilland Law. De Havilland moved to Paris in the 1950s and lived there for the rest of her life, dying peacefully in her luxurious 19th-century town house.
In 2005, Vanity Fair magazine asked de Havilland, as part of its Proust Questionnaire, how she would like to die. Her reply was elegance itself: “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.” Rest in peace, dear madame.