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Sarandon and Lange say Feud on FX ‘shows how little things have changed for women’

Susan Sarandon as Bette Davis in Feud. Pic credit: FX

Feud stars Susan Sarandon and Jessica Lange and its creator Ryan Murphy say the first season of the FX series highlights how little things have changed for women in 50 years.

The show, which FX revealed will premiere on March 5, features different stories each season revolving around notorious famous Tinseltown feuds.

The first eight-episode season centers on the famous conflict between Hollywood Icons Joan Crawford and Bette Davis — with Jessica Lange playing Crawford and Susan Sarandon as Davis.

Creator Ryan Murphy said their story highlighted the difficulties women, including those in Hollywood, have faced over the past half a century — and how little things have changed.

Murphy told the Television Critics’ Association (TCA) winter press tour: “Women are still going through the same sort of stuff they went through 50 years ago. We wanted to show that.”

Lange said: “A big part of this show is what Hollywood does to women as they age.” She added: “Joan was 10 years younger than I am now and yet her career was finished because of her age.”

Sarandon said: “Aging actresses still have the same problem. I can guarantee that.” But she added: “When I started, it was over by 40. So definitely the line has been pushed.”

Taking part in the panel discussion for FX at the press tour were Murphy (Creator/EP/Writer/Director), executive producers Tim Minear and Dede Gardner, and stars Lange, Sarandon, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Alison Wright, and Kiernan Shipka.

Murphy knew Davis, and said of the series: “A lot of the gossip items are verbatim quotes taken from the fabulous horse’s mouth.”

Murphy and Lange previously worked together on American Horror Story, and bring their chemistry back in the new TV anthology series.

Crawford and Davis’s infamous feud started back in 1962, as the pair were costarring in the film What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?

Their hostility was well documented in the press and tabloid media but came to a head when the 1963 Oscar nomination nod went to Davis her performance in the movie.

Complicating matters was the fact that the eventual winner was an absent Anne Bancroft (for her performance in The Miracle Worker), but Crawford graciously accepted the award on Bancroft’s behalf.  Burn!

In an interview with EW Sarandon described the project, saying: “In the examination of Hollywood through the time of Bette Davis and Joan Crawford, the question is whether or not things have actually changed that much. Do we pit women against women? Do the studios still have more power than individual women?”

Feud will be Murphy’s third anthology series for FX, after American Crime Story and American Horror Story.

Feud premieres on Sunday, March 5 at 10pm ET/PT on FX.

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April is an accredited entertainment writer, interviewer and television critic. She is a current member of the Television Critics Association (TCA), Gay and Lesbian Entertainment... read more
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