Chess champion Nona Gaprindashvili has filed a lawsuit against Netflix for sexist remarks in the Queen’s Gambit. The soviet grandmaster has sued the show broadcasting company for $5 million.
The hit series claimed that she had never ‘played men’. She said that the remark was belittling and sexist.
The Queen’s Gambit
The Netflix show became a hit. The season follows the story of Elizabeth Harmon, played by Anya Taylor-Joy, who travels to Moscow to compete against Soviet champions in Chess.
She is a complex character, who battles with multiple personal problems. In the finale of the series, a character says that ‘Harmon is not at all an important player’. Further claiming that the only unusual thing about her was her gender.
However, it was stated that this was not unusual for the Soviets, since there is Nona Gaprindashvili. She’s the female world champion but has ‘never faced men’.
Nona Gaprindashvili’s lawsuit
The 80-year-old lives in Tbilisi, Georgia. She is a famous name in the world of chess. However, the grandmaster claims that she indeed faced men. By 1968 (the time in which the Queen’s Gambit is set), she had infact competed against 59 men.
She faced 28 of these men in a simultaneous match, as well as 10 grandmasters. In an interview, she said that it was ironic how they were portraying a fictional character who blazed the trail for other women. In reality, she was the one who did that.
The lawsuit against Netflix over the Queen’s Gambit sought damages for ‘devastating falsehood, degrading her accomplishments and undermining her achievements’. The suit also states that the show portrayed her as Russian, but she is actually Georgian.
Gaprindashvili was the first woman to be given the title of international grandmaster by FIDE back in 1978. She said that her entire life had been overlooked in the show as if it wasn’t important.
The company responded to the claim. They issued a statement that they have the utmost respect for Gaprindashvili, but the claims have no merit. Their aim is to ‘vigorously defend the case’.
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