FEUD: BETTE AND JOAN
TRIVIA: Ryan Murphy interviewed Bette Davis months before her death in 1989. The agreed-upon 20-minute interview lasted four hours, and inspired his characterization of Davis. When he asked her about Joan Crawford, she would talk about how much she hated her, before saying "She was a professional. And I admired that."
The series was in development - with Jessica Lange and Susan Sarandon on board - for seven years before finally being given the green light.
Three Oscar winners (Jessica Lange, Susan Sarandon, Catherine Zeta-Jones) portray three other Oscar winners (Joan Crawford, Bette Davis, and Olivia de Havilland, respectively).
Catherine Zeta-Jones was Ryan Murphy's only choice for the role of Olivia de Havilland, which he offered to her personally.
Catherine Zeta-Jones claimed that while she did not contact 100 year old Olivia de Havilland to advise on her portrayal, she did consult her (also 100 year old) father-in-law Kirk Douglas for advice. She claimed that Douglas described de Havilland as "Aaah Olivia," Bette Davis: "Aww, she was a broad. She told it as it was," and Joan Crawford: "She was out of her fucking mind!"
During the beginning credits of each episode, both Jessica Lange and Susan Sarandon's name switches for who's is shown first each week - as if they are fighting for top billing, much like their respective characters in Feud (2017).
Both leading actors are considerably older than the real life individuals they are playing. Bette Davis was 54 during filming of What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962) - Susan Sarandon is 70. Joan Crawford was 56, Jessica Lange is 67.
Bette Davis works with Faye Dunaway on "The Disappearance of Aimee (1976)" and explains that Ms. Dunaway is even more difficult to work with than Joan Crawford who Ms. Davis admitted to being professional and prompt. Five years after making that film, Faye Dunaway portrayed Joan Crawford in "Mommie Dearest (1981)" and received numerous negative reviews for her over the top and downright inaccurate portrayal of Joan. To this day, Ms. Dunaway refuses to discuss "Mommie Dearest (1981)" or her experience making it.
B-movie director William Castle is played by cult film director John Waters. The casting is a wish-fulfillment for Waters, who was heavily influenced by Castle. The production deliberately did nothing to make Waters resemble Castle so that any viewer who recognized him would get the joke. Waters also recorded a commentary track for the Joan Crawford bio-pic Mommie Dearest (1981).
The Tudor style house occupied by Bette Davis was featured in the movie Donnie Darko.
Susan Sarandon claimed that there were four to five other projects she was aware of since the 1980s in which she was suggested to play Bette Davis.