Why Olivia Wilde had to get served in person with legal papers from Jason Sudeikis
All is not fair in former love and legalities.
While onstage at CinemaCon presenting her upcoming film Don't Worry Darling, Olivia Wilde received legal papers from her ex-fiancé, Jason Sudeikis, with whom she shares two children — Otis, 8, and Daisy, 5. The former couple separated in November 2020 after nine years together.
As Wilde spoke to the crowd in Las Vegas, an unidentified woman approached the director-star with the envelope — labeled "Personal and Confidential" — and slid it to the middle of the stage. Wilde picked it up and looked inside ("I'm going to open it now because it feels like it's a script?" she said at the time). After a quick perusal of the contents, she responded, "Okay, got it. Thank you." before moving on with her presentation.
The incident instantly raised many questions, from how someone was able to approach Wilde during such a public event to how much Sudeikis was involved in its orchestration — and why it even had to happen at all.
How was the unidentified woman able to approach the stage and reach Wilde?
CinemaCon — which was held at The Colosseum theater at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas — has thousands of attendees, but pre-registration is required for attendance. The convention is primarily for professionals in the cinema industry, ranging from filmmakers to concession vendors.
Shortly after the incident, a rep from CinemaCon told EW they were unsure how the woman was able to gain access and approach the stage. The rep added that organizers plan to do a review after the conference ends.
"We've never in the history of the convention had an incident where a delegate has approached the stage who is not authorized to be there. In light of this incident, we are re-evaluating our security procedures to secure the safety of all of our attendees," the rep said. "Right now, we're just concentrating on as an organization what we need to do to ensure the safety of our delegates."
Did Sudeikis know Wilde was going to be served publicly?
No, according to a source close to the situation.
"Mr. Sudeikis had no prior knowledge of the time or place that the envelope would have been delivered, as this would solely be up to the process service company involved, and he would never condone her being served in such an inappropriate manner," the source told EW. The papers were in relation to the couple's children.
Why did she have to get served in person?
According to basic family law practices, after a party opens a custody case, they have to ensure the other party (normally the other parent) is "personally served" a copy of the pertinent legal documents. The papers have to be served by a "disinterested person," so someone who has no interest in the outcome of the filing and is of legal age (at least 18 years of age).
The papers must be served within 120 days after the initial filing. If that does not occur, the complaint will be dismissed unless an extension request is granted. The serving can happen anywhere, whether at home or at work.
So Wilde's situation, while unconventionally public, was based on basic procedure which dictates that such documents must be hand-delivered.