First Wives Club Author Dies after Having Facelift

The Evening Standard (London, England), January 16, 2004 | Go to article overview

First Wives Club Author Dies after Having Facelift


Byline: JAMES LANGTON

BEST-SELLING author Olivia Goldsmith has died after her facelift went wrong.

She was best known for The First Wives Club which was turned into the 1996 hit film starring Goldie Hawn, Bette Midler and Diane Keaton as three friends who take their revenge on cheating husbands who dump them for younger women.

The 54-year-old writer, whose real name was Justine Rendal, had been in a deep coma for more than a week caused by a reaction to an anaesthetic while she was having plastic surgery.

She died last night at the Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan after failing to regain consciousness during an operation at a clinic on 7 January to remove skin from under her neck. While the official cause of death has not been made public, one report said she had suffered a heart attack.

In a recent interview she joked that she wanted to be given liposuction after her death so that friends could say: "She never looked better".

She also said that death no longer worried her and that "my favourite hobbies are reading, sex and sleeping".

Several close friends were at her bedside when she died. Her lawyer, Steven Mintz, said she had left instructions to donate her organs "to provide future life and comfort to others".

He added: "She clearly died from injuries associated with the anaesthetic.

It's very sad.

The whole thing is terrible."

Goldsmith claimed to have been inspired to write after her own divorce. She vowed never to marry again when her businessman husband took most of her possessions in a settlement, including their Jaguar and a house in the Hamptons.

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