Netflix settles with chess champion over ’devastating falsehood’ about her in <i>The Queen’s Gambit</i>

Netflix has settled a lawsuit brought by a real chess champion over a “sexist and belittling” line about her in The Queen’s Gambit.

Court papers on Tuesday showed the streamer settled the $5 million defamation lawsuit, which was brought by chess champion Nona Gaprindashvili, according to The New York Times. Terms of the settlement weren’t disclosed. 

Gaprindashvili sued Netflix last year over a reference to her in the miniseries The Queen’s Gambit, which revolves around a fictional female chess prodigy. A climatic scene depicts the main character, played by Anya Taylor-Joy, competing in a chess tournament, where the announcer says, “The only unusual thing about her, really, is her sex, and even that’s not unique in Russia. There’s Nona Gaprindashvili, but she’s the female world champion and has never faced men.”

In reality, Gaprindashvili had faced men by the time the series took place. In the lawsuit, she described this as a “devastating falsehood, undermining and degrading her accomplishments before an audience of many millions.” Gaprindashvili also accused the streamer of “brazenly and deliberately” lying about her for the “cheap and cynical purpose of ‘heightening the drama.'” 

A judge in January rejected Netflix’s attempt to have the lawsuit dismissed after the streamer argued it was protected under the First Amendment, Variety reports

News of the settlement comes after Netflix was hit with another defamation lawsuit brought by Rachel Williams, former friend of Anna Sorokin, who sued over her depiction in the miniseries Inventing Anna. She told The Hollywood Reporter, “The truth matters and portraying real people requires real responsibility.” 

Source: Netflix settles with chess champion over ’devastating falsehood’ about her in <i>The Queen’s Gambit</i>

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