Joan Fontaine, the Oscar-winning star of Alfred Hitchcock's Rebecca and Suspicion, died today at her home in Northern California. She was 96. The actress won the Best Actress Oscar for her role in 1941's Suspicion as a woman who suspects her husband, played by Cary Grant, is trying to kill her.
Fontaine, born Joan de Beauvoir de Havilland in Tokyo, was the sister of Gone With the Wind star Olivia de Havilland, who is now 97. The two had one of Hollywood's most famous familial feuds and, according to People, hadn't spoken to each other in years. Theories included that De Havilland resented Fontaine's winning the Oscar over De Havilland, who was nominated for her role in the tearjerker Hold Back the Dawn. De Havilland would go on to win the Oscar twice, for 1947's To Each His Own and 1950s The Heiress.
Fontaine was also nominated for her roles in Rebecca and 1943's The Constant Nymph. Her other films include Jane Eyre opposite Orson Welles, Letter From an Unknown Woman and Ivanhoe. Her last big-screen role was in the 1966 Hammer horror film The Witches (aka The Devil's Own).
In 1978, in an interview with People, she cited their decades-long rivalry when asked how she wanted to die [at age 108 flying around the stage in Peter Pan, as a result of my sister cutting the wires. Olivia has always said I was first at everything – I got married first, got an Academy Award first, had a child first. If I die, she'll be furious, because again I'll have got there first!"
Here are some of Fontaine's best-remembered roles and a few you might not have seen.