Four Famous Mother/Daughter Feuds

Our new series The Mother/Daughter Experiment: Celebrity Edition examines at the sometimes tricky relationships between mothers and their daughters. To celebrate the launch, we take a look at some of the biggest mother/daughter fights in Hollywood history ...

Joan & Christina Crawford

Arguably the most famous mother-daughter feud of all time involves Christina Crawford – the adopted daughter of Joan Crawford. In 1978, after Joan's death, Christina wrote the book Mommie Dearest about the emotional and physical abuse inflicted on her by her mother.

The book was later adapted in to a 1981 film starring Faye Dunaway – and portrayed Joan as a narcissist who placed herself in competition with her daughter. The film was ultimately unsuccessful with critics and resulted in Dunaway's career declining – but it remains a camp classic to this day for popularising such exclamations as “Bring me the axe!” and “No wire hangers!”

Courtney Love & Frances Bean Cobain

Courtney Love has had a tempestuous relationship for years with Frances Bean, her daughter with Kurt Cobain. In 2009 the mother and daughter got in to a physical fight after which Frances took out a restraining order. In a court appearance in 2012, she spoke about her mother's issues with addiction. She told a judge: “She basically exists now on...Xanax, Adderall, Sonata and Abilify, sugar and cigarettes,” – and accused Love of killing the family's pets.

The two had been seen in public together in early 2015 but Courtney was not in attendance at Frances' wedding to Isaiah Silva. A few days later she took to Instagram and wrote: “If you think I'm sorry for being a no-show at any important events this week, thin[k] again.” 

Ariel Winter & Chrisoula Workman

Modern Family star Ariel Winter had a restraining order placed on her mother in 2012 (when she was only 14) citing physical and emotional abuse. She moved in with her sister, Shanelle Gray, who later gained full custody of Winter. In response to Ariel's allegations, Chrisoula maintains her innocence.

On a recent appearance on Good Morning America, Ariel said "I did have a really, really hard childhood. It wasn't normal. It wasn't what I should have had. It wasn't a supportive, loving home. I had a really tough time."

Drew & Jaid Barrymore

Drew Barrymore has had issues with her mother Jaid for over twenty years – stemming from her turbulent childhood. Drew became emancipated as a teen and the two have been estranged since. “I've never just been angry with her. I've always felt guilt and empathy and utter sensitivity,” Drew told Marie Claire. “But we can't really be in each other's lives at this point.” 

Drew wrote in her autobiography Wildflower that she has made sure her mother is taken care of financially. She wrote: “ I am grateful to this woman for bringing me into this world, and it would crush me to know she was in need.”