BootLeg Betty

BetteBack August 5, 1992: More Details On The Martha Raye Lawsuit

Winnipeg Free Press
August 5, 1992

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Entertainer Martha Raye filed a $5-million lawsuit against Bette Midler and 20th Century Fox last week, accusing the singer-actress of stealing Raye’s life story as the basis of the movie For the Boys. The big-budget film, which stars Midler and James Caan, bombed at the box office last year.

Raye claims in the suit that she registered a screen treatment of the story with the Writers Guild of America in 1981. She alleged she took the screen treatment to Fox but was turned down.

The lawsuit said Raye met Midler in 1985 and took a copy of the manuscript. Raye, 75, alleges Midler then began production on For the Boys, a movie about USO singers who entertained troops during the Second World War.

Raye, who had a stroke in 1990 that confined her to a wheelchair, was a popular performer on the USD circuit.

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