London - Hollywood screen legend James Mason has been finally laid to rest -- 16 years after his death, the Daily Telegraph newspaper reported on Saturday.
Mason's children buried his ashes in a Swiss cemetery on Friday after an acrimonious legal battle over the British actor's estate with their stepmother Clarissa Kaye, and later with the administrators of her estate, the paper said.
The wrangle became so bitter that for many years Mason's children, daughter Portland and son Morgan, had no idea of the whereabouts of their father's ashes. Portland finally tracked them to a bank vault in Geneva.
``It is like a dream,'' the Daily Telegraph quoted Portland Mason as saying after the burial ceremony. ``Sometimes I thought it would never happen. It has been so, so long,'' she said.
Mason, who died of a heart attack aged 75 in 1984, was the star of such screen classics as ``A Star is Born,'' ``The Desert Fox,'' ``Lolita'' and ``North by Northwest.''
The paper said that the actor felt his second wife Clarissa had sacrificed a Hollywood career of her own when she agreed to move to Lake Geneva with him in 1963. He wanted her to be able to live in comfort after his death. The children believed he intended for them to inherit his estimated 15 million pound fortune on Clarissa's death, the paper said. But Clarissa, who died six years ago, bequeathed everything to a trust with unknown benefactors.
The children believe the benefactors are devotees of Sathya Sai Baba, an Indian religious sect, which Clarissa became close to in the last years of her life. They are continuing litigation in the hope of gaining control of at least part of their father's estate.