In 1978, a year after Hollywood icon Joan Crawford's death, her adopted daughter, Christina Crawford, released the controversial tell-all book Mommie Dearest. Christina claimed in the memoir that her mother was not only an alcoholic, she was also abusive to her children.
The popular book successfully managed to tarnish the good reputation that the socially-conscious actress maintained throughout her career.
The book later inspired a 1981 movie starring Faye Dunaway, a few documentaries, and more recently a show on FX titled Feud. Christina also penned more books on the relationship with her mother, the latest one, Survivor, was released in early 2017 to mark the 40th anniversary of the original.
Despite Christina's claims, others close to the late actress sing a very different tune. Her first husband, actor Douglas Fairbanks Jr., and her two youngest daughters, Cathy and Cindy, denied the allegations brought against Crawford.
The Mildred Pierce star's grandson from Cathy, Casey Lalonde, also came to her defense recently. He explained that his grandmother, whom he called "JoJo," was nothing like the monster that Christina wrote about. He even shared his own childhood memories to back it up.
"I’m not here to attack Christina," Casey told Closer. "Those are her memories — I wasn’t there. I just want to present my side. Joan was a beautiful person."
He shared similar sentiments in another interview with Daily Mail saying, "She always entertained me and my sister at the apartment. We just visited with her just like any other grandmother."
"She was always happy to see us, very warm and pleasant," he added. "She [Crawford] always made us feel comfortable. She made us lunch. I remember sitting in her kitchen, eating lunch with her and then we’d play."
Although most of Crawford's relatives debunked Christina's claims, she still insists that her account is the truth and continues to tell her life story. She recently opened up about her past and how she's been working on moving forward in an interview with Early Bird Books.