Due to an incorrect line of dialogue, chess grandmaster Nona Gaprindashvili has handed Netflix a lawsuit over The Queen’s Gambit. According to Hollywood Reporter, Gaprindashvili filed a defamation suit against Netflix seeking $5 million in damages with more in punitive damages, as well as a demand for the episode’s dialogue to be altered.
During the final episode, a chess commentator references Gaprindashvili while discussing the main character, Beth Harmon, “The only unusual thing about [Harmon], 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.”
The Queen’s Gambit episode in question is set in 1968, and Gaprindashvili states that she had competed against 59 men at that point, 10 of them being grandmasters. “Netflix brazenly and deliberately lied about Gaprindashvili’s achievements for the cheap and cynical purpose of ‘heightening the drama’ by making it appear that its fictional hero had managed to do what no other woman, including Gaprindashvili, had done,” the complaint alleges. An article published in The New York Times on April 15, 1968, corroborates the grandmaster’s career then.
The lawsuit also mentions that Gaprindashvili is Georgian and not Russian. It can be seen in full here.
While praising Gaprindashvili for her accomplishments, Netflix did push back against the allegations in their response, “Netflix has only the utmost respect for Ms. Gaprindashvili and her illustrious career, but we believe this claim has no merit and will vigorously defend the case”.
The Queen’s Gambit was originally released on Netflix in October 2020 to rave reviews and recently received an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Limited Or Anthology Series.
What are your thoughts on Netflix’s The Queen’s Gambit lawsuit? What were your thoughts on the Netflix show as a whole? Let us know in the comments below, and keep coming back to The Nerd Stash for all of your nerdy news and needs!