Goodbye Goddess: Elizabeth Taylor 1932-2011

Elizabeth Taylor has always been one of my favorite actresses. She was an incredible natural beauty. Arguably the most beautiful actress Hollywood ever produced but she was also a brilliant performer when she wanted to be. She dominated almost every film she ever appeared in even when that film wasn’t particularly worthy of her larger than life presence. Taylor was a complex woman with a rich inner life who enjoyed living and one look into her deep violet eyes told you this. Inside of Taylor there seemed to be a volcanic mountain of pent-up emotion just waiting to explode. Her appetite for life was voracious but her heart was huge, open and warm. These are rare and wonderful qualities that you seldom find in today’s Hollywood stars.

It’s hard to single out a handful of Taylor films that are favorites when I think about her body of work. I liked her in everything she did. I just enjoyed watching her no matter how lousy the film was or how out of step her performance might have been. She was captivating and enchanting in ways that are hard to explain. Even as a child actor in films like Jane Eyre (1943) and National Velvet (1944) you knew you were watching something special. Elizabeth Taylor made magic happen on screen. She does have her critics though. Men in particular often seem threatened by her powerful and unapologetic performances that occasionally seemed to mirror her real life. Her bold confidence, curvy figure and wild black locks were at odds with Hollywood’s feminine ideal, which is often represented by soft-spoken angelic figures like Grace Kelly and Audrey Hepburn.

Some of Elizabeth Taylor’s most complex and expressive performances can be found in George Stevens’ A Place in the Sun (1951) where she holds Montgomery Clift’s troubled heart in her hands and Giant (1956) where her graceful beauty seems to soften the harsh Texas landscape that she’s dropped into after her character marries Rock Hudson. And it’s impossible to think of another actress who could disarm James Dean’s awkward and love struck Jett Rink as effortlessly as Taylor did. In Raintree County (1957) she has some wonderful moments playing a mad Southern bell that has captured Montgomery Clift’s heart once again and she was incredibly seductive and compelling opposite Paul Newman in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958) and Laurence Harvey in BUtterfield 8 (1960). After her celebrated role in Joseph L. Mankiewicz’s Cleopatra (1960) where she won critical acclaim as well as her co-star, Richard Burton, Taylor’s popularity exploded and her celebrity began to overshadow her work. Any other actress would have used her superstar status to take on glamorous roles in conventional films but Taylor wasn’t interested in playing it safe. As the 1950s made way for the 1960s she appeared in dark dramas like Suddenly, Last Summer (1959) as a distressed young woman who is tormented by her memories opposite a frightful Katharine Hepburn and a sympathetic Montgomery Clift. And in Mike Nichols’ Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966) Taylor teamed up with her talented husband to portray a woman much older than herself who’s distraught by the direction that her life has taken and fends off disappointment with too much booze and her cutting wit.

Following her Oscar winning role in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? Taylor joined Richard Burton again in Franco Zeffirelli’s superb Shakespeare adaptation of The Taming of the Shrew (1967). That same year she worked with John Huston in his undervalued adaptation of Carson McCullers’ Reflections in a Golden Eye (1967) playing Marlon Brando’s disillusioned wife stalked by a young and admiring Robert Forster. Afterward she teamed up with the blacklisted director Joseph Losey and appeared in two of his most controversial films, Boom! (1968) and Secret Ceremony (1968). I happen to think Joseph Losey is one of our greatest directors so it’s hard for me to be critical of his work but it’s a shame that these films are so often overlooked when they both contain some great moments and daring performances from Elizabeth Taylor.

As the decade came to a close Taylor appeared on countless magazine covers and every move she made was tracked by gossip columnists but film critics were becoming particularly hostile towards her. Although she was wonderfully creepy opposite Laurence Harvey in the psychological thriller Night Watch (1973), incredibly sympathetic as Henry Fonda’s neglected wife in Ash Wednesday (1973) and amazingly brave and brass in The Driver’s Seat (1974), the 1970s are generally considered a forgettable decade in Taylor’s long career before she was regulated to TV work. I don’t happen to agree with that assumption, which is too often repeated and very rarely investigated. Taylor brought all of her life experience, problems and passions to her performances. Naturally this means that some of her later films were rather messy but rarely boring.

As good as an actress as Elizabeth Taylor was it’s impossible to separate her private life from her very public one. Taylor’s many marriages are legendary and she was one of the first celebrities to openly discuss her addictions to alcohol and prescription pills publicly. Her generous nature led her to befriend many of her costars and Taylor naturally gravitated towards outsiders, malcontents and dark horses like Montgomery Clift, Laurence Harvey, Rock Hudson and Michael Jackson as well as her two-time husband Richard Burton. That’s one of the things that I loved about her. She was Hollywood royalty but she never really fit in. Taylor had no problem telling producer Louis B. Mayer to “go to hell” after he swore at her mother and she bluntly called director George Stevens “a callous bastard” when he ordered the actress to return to the set of Giant after learning that her co-star, James Dean, had died. Taylor always appeared to be drifting above it all and never seemed to have any regrets even though she once told Larry King that she was “sorry if I ever hurt anyone.” She was determined to carve out her own path in a world that wasn’t always particularly kind to her. Whether it was championing a cause like AIDS research long before our own government bothered to care or just hawking her own jewelry and perfume lines, which profited the charities she supported, Taylor gave of herself over and over again without asking for much in return.

Elizabeth Taylor will be missed by many and I’m sure plenty of other critics and fans besides myself will be celebrating her life this week as well as trying to diminish her legacy, but that’s impossible. Elizabeth Taylor looms as large as Cleopatra herself on our cultural landscape. But Taylor wasn’t just a pop culture icon. The Oscar winning actress helped invent the term. Warhol turned her image into art. Mattel turned her image into a Barbie doll. The Vatican condemned her “erotic vagrancy” and the Queen of England honored the actress by appointing her a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire. Taylor’s timeless beauty will haunt us forever. She’s part of all of our lives whether we want her to be or not and I’m thankful for the incredible body of work that she left behind for us all to enjoy.

On Sunday, April 10th, TCM will begin airing a 24-hour tribute to the actress. Some of Elizabeth Taylor’s best films will be shown including many of the titles I’ve mentioned above such as Giant, Raintree County, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Butterfield 8 and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? And if you’re one of the lucky people who will be attending TCM’s Classic Film Festival this year you’ll be able to see a special 60th anniversary screening of A Place in the Sun.

In memoriam I’ve compiled a list of memorable quotes about Elizabeth Taylor from people who knew her.

“She was, I decided, the most astonishingly self-contained, pulchritudinous, remote, removed, inaccessible woman I had ever seen. She spoke to no one. She looked at no one. She steadily kept on reading her book. Was she merely sullen? I wondered. I thought not. There was no trace of sulkiness in the divine face. She was a Mona Lisa type, I thought. In my business everyone is a type. She is older than the deck chair on which she sits, I thought headily, and she is famine, fire, destruction, and plague, she is the Dark Lady of the Sonnets, the on lie true begetter. She is a secret wrapped in an enigma inside a mystery, I thought with a mental man-to-man nod to Churchill. Her breasts were apocalyptic, they would topple empires down before they withered.” – Richard Burton

“Elizabeth is very extreme in her likes and dislikes. If she likes, she loves. If she doesn’t like, she loathes. And she has a temper, an incredible temper, which she loses at any injustice.” – Rock Hudson

“I can say only good things about Elizabeth Taylor. I discovered that, more than a great beauty or personality, she was a supremely fine actress.” – John Huston

“The shock of Elizabeth was not only her beauty. It was her generosity. Her giant laugh. Her vitality, whether tackling a complex scene on film or where we would all have dinner until dawn. She is singular and indelible on film and in our hearts.” – Mike Nichols

“She was an icon then and she is an icon now. She never stopped being one.” – Robert Forster

“I don’t know what was more impressive, her magnitude as a star or her magnitude as a friend. Her talent for friendship was unmatched.” – Shirley MacLaine

“It’s the end of an era. It wasn’t just her beauty or her stardom. It was her humanitarianism. She put a face on HIV/AIDS. She was funny. She was generous. She made her life count.” – Barbra Streisand

“We have just lost a Hollywood giant. More importantly, we have lost an incredible human being.” – Elton John

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NyHa4NSmTkk]

58 Responses Goodbye Goddess: Elizabeth Taylor 1932-2011
Posted By medusamorlock : March 24, 2011 12:24 am

Really lovely post and as you can see we both were moved to salute Elizabeth Taylor, almost simultaneously, in fact.

I’ve always liked her, and it’s amazing that somebody who looked so lovely ever got to really do any decent acting, and she did plenty.

My favorite films of hers are “A Place in the Sun” and “Suddenly Last Summer” probably, but there are many others that are fascinating and there is always something to watch in an Elizabeth Taylor performance.

That photo of her with Clift is magical. They obviously “got” each other.

Wonderful post, Kimberly!

Posted By medusamorlock : March 24, 2011 12:24 am

Really lovely post and as you can see we both were moved to salute Elizabeth Taylor, almost simultaneously, in fact.

I’ve always liked her, and it’s amazing that somebody who looked so lovely ever got to really do any decent acting, and she did plenty.

My favorite films of hers are “A Place in the Sun” and “Suddenly Last Summer” probably, but there are many others that are fascinating and there is always something to watch in an Elizabeth Taylor performance.

That photo of her with Clift is magical. They obviously “got” each other.

Wonderful post, Kimberly!

Posted By Kimberly Lindbergs : March 24, 2011 3:12 am

Thanks so much. We’ve both got great taste and great minds think alike!

I had a tough time writing this because I occasionally got misty eyed. And I love that photo of her and Clift too! I stumbled across it online a few weeks ago and this seemed like a good time to share it. They made some wonderful movies together and I always thought they worked so well as a team.

Posted By Kimberly Lindbergs : March 24, 2011 3:12 am

Thanks so much. We’ve both got great taste and great minds think alike!

I had a tough time writing this because I occasionally got misty eyed. And I love that photo of her and Clift too! I stumbled across it online a few weeks ago and this seemed like a good time to share it. They made some wonderful movies together and I always thought they worked so well as a team.

Posted By suzidoll : March 24, 2011 11:35 am

An excellent tribute, Kimberly. I liked the point that you made about her choice in men being a reflection of a rebel spirit. Many have been quipping about her many marriages, which bothers me. But, your take makes a lot of sense to me.

BTW, on a completely different topic: We are using your article on HANNIE CAULDER from last year as a hand-out for the audience for this week’s midnight movie at Facets. We are presenting HANNIE this Saturday night at Night School. I hope that’s okay with you.

Posted By suzidoll : March 24, 2011 11:35 am

An excellent tribute, Kimberly. I liked the point that you made about her choice in men being a reflection of a rebel spirit. Many have been quipping about her many marriages, which bothers me. But, your take makes a lot of sense to me.

BTW, on a completely different topic: We are using your article on HANNIE CAULDER from last year as a hand-out for the audience for this week’s midnight movie at Facets. We are presenting HANNIE this Saturday night at Night School. I hope that’s okay with you.

Posted By Heidi : March 24, 2011 12:07 pm

Love all her movies. I must be the odd one out though, I haven’t seen anyone mention her in Little Women. I guess it was not a great movie like the the others mentioned, but I thought she stole the show, so to speak. Blonde hair and everything! Don’t know off the top of my head where it falls in her career, but I like it because it was so off the wall. “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” is one of my favorites, and I read on TCM that they were going to give that part to Grace Kelly but she retired to marry. I love Grace Kelly, too, but I don’t see her in that part at all. That part seemed to be written for Elizabeth. It is truely an end of an era.

Posted By Heidi : March 24, 2011 12:07 pm

Love all her movies. I must be the odd one out though, I haven’t seen anyone mention her in Little Women. I guess it was not a great movie like the the others mentioned, but I thought she stole the show, so to speak. Blonde hair and everything! Don’t know off the top of my head where it falls in her career, but I like it because it was so off the wall. “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” is one of my favorites, and I read on TCM that they were going to give that part to Grace Kelly but she retired to marry. I love Grace Kelly, too, but I don’t see her in that part at all. That part seemed to be written for Elizabeth. It is truely an end of an era.

Posted By Kathryn : March 24, 2011 12:18 pm

In case anyone is interested, Elizabeth Taylor’s family and friends ask that in lieu of gifts or flowers that fans send donations to her AIDS Foundation. The link can be found here: http://www.elizabethtayloraidsfoundation.org/how-you-can-help

Posted By Kathryn : March 24, 2011 12:18 pm

In case anyone is interested, Elizabeth Taylor’s family and friends ask that in lieu of gifts or flowers that fans send donations to her AIDS Foundation. The link can be found here: http://www.elizabethtayloraidsfoundation.org/how-you-can-help

Posted By Katie Smith : March 24, 2011 12:20 pm

Ms Taylor was one of a kind. I met her at Ronald Reagan first inguration. She was beautiful but not demanding. We had a short conversation, but I will remember it always. I extend my sincerest sympathy to her family.

Katie Smith

Posted By Katie Smith : March 24, 2011 12:20 pm

Ms Taylor was one of a kind. I met her at Ronald Reagan first inguration. She was beautiful but not demanding. We had a short conversation, but I will remember it always. I extend my sincerest sympathy to her family.

Katie Smith

Posted By Eric F. : March 24, 2011 1:41 pm

Thanks for your heart-felt posting, Kimberly. Liz was on the cover of every New York City and Long Island newspaper today, even the ones that are usually unable to see past their own daily schlock headlines.

The one word that comes to my mind when I consider Liz Taylor’s acting is definitely DIVERSIFIED. She could play kind, gentle and caring for one role and then turn it around and play hard and vicious for another. I cannot watch GIANT without thinking that its story and performances can be considered a prelude to the long-running CBS-TV series DALLAS. Her passing reminds me that we are close to losing all that is left of our surviving Hollywood legends. What will be left when they’re all gone? Ashton Kutcher and Megan Fox? Heaven help us!

Being close in age to you, I can appreciate the films that you grew up with and the films you love now. Even at the age of 43, people tend to ask me why I love old films that were “before my time” so much. I try not to get too offended by such an ignorant question, but one should also remember that growing up in the 1970s meant growing up with local television stations that showed old black and white movies every night of the week. These channels WERE the Turner Classic Movies of the day!

By the way, if you’re interested, please take a moment to read my film blog at http://www.mymoviesmywords.blogspot.com. What I do is go through my entire film collection (over 700 titles!) in alphabetical order (currently up to the letter ‘C’) and discuss my memories, thoughts, feelings and experiences surrounding each film.

Thanks again!

- Eric F.

Posted By Eric F. : March 24, 2011 1:41 pm

Thanks for your heart-felt posting, Kimberly. Liz was on the cover of every New York City and Long Island newspaper today, even the ones that are usually unable to see past their own daily schlock headlines.

The one word that comes to my mind when I consider Liz Taylor’s acting is definitely DIVERSIFIED. She could play kind, gentle and caring for one role and then turn it around and play hard and vicious for another. I cannot watch GIANT without thinking that its story and performances can be considered a prelude to the long-running CBS-TV series DALLAS. Her passing reminds me that we are close to losing all that is left of our surviving Hollywood legends. What will be left when they’re all gone? Ashton Kutcher and Megan Fox? Heaven help us!

Being close in age to you, I can appreciate the films that you grew up with and the films you love now. Even at the age of 43, people tend to ask me why I love old films that were “before my time” so much. I try not to get too offended by such an ignorant question, but one should also remember that growing up in the 1970s meant growing up with local television stations that showed old black and white movies every night of the week. These channels WERE the Turner Classic Movies of the day!

By the way, if you’re interested, please take a moment to read my film blog at http://www.mymoviesmywords.blogspot.com. What I do is go through my entire film collection (over 700 titles!) in alphabetical order (currently up to the letter ‘C’) and discuss my memories, thoughts, feelings and experiences surrounding each film.

Thanks again!

- Eric F.

Posted By morlockjeff : March 24, 2011 2:30 pm

That Richard Burton quote is killer. He had a way with words…and women, didn’t he?

Posted By morlockjeff : March 24, 2011 2:30 pm

That Richard Burton quote is killer. He had a way with words…and women, didn’t he?

Posted By Kimberly Lindbergs : March 24, 2011 3:16 pm

Thanks for all the nice comments, everyone!

Suzi – I’d be honored if use my HANNIE piece for the Facets program. It’s sounds like a great time and I hope people find it useful.

Heidi – Taylor is wonderful in LITTLE WOMEN. As I mentioned above, I enjoyed her in everything but I had a hard time picking and choosing films to mention because she really did leave an incredible body of work behind. But I’m glad you brought it up because it’s a great movie.

Kathryn – Thanks for the link.

Katie – It sounds like she was a lovely person. Every account I’ve read of people meeting her for the first time seems to suggest that she welcomed strangers with open arms.

Eric – Like you, I’m grateful that I grew up before cable TV and videos/DVD. It helped expose to em older films that I probably would have never seen otherwise. One of my earliest recollections of watching Taylor was in GIANT. I absolutely love that film and her performance in it. I’ll try to stop by and give your blog a look soon and thanks for making time to comment here.

Jeff – Isn’t it killer? Burton really did have a way with words and I’m sure his phrasing and golden voice melted countless hearts. He’s melted mine in many a movie.

Posted By Kimberly Lindbergs : March 24, 2011 3:16 pm

Thanks for all the nice comments, everyone!

Suzi – I’d be honored if use my HANNIE piece for the Facets program. It’s sounds like a great time and I hope people find it useful.

Heidi – Taylor is wonderful in LITTLE WOMEN. As I mentioned above, I enjoyed her in everything but I had a hard time picking and choosing films to mention because she really did leave an incredible body of work behind. But I’m glad you brought it up because it’s a great movie.

Kathryn – Thanks for the link.

Katie – It sounds like she was a lovely person. Every account I’ve read of people meeting her for the first time seems to suggest that she welcomed strangers with open arms.

Eric – Like you, I’m grateful that I grew up before cable TV and videos/DVD. It helped expose to em older films that I probably would have never seen otherwise. One of my earliest recollections of watching Taylor was in GIANT. I absolutely love that film and her performance in it. I’ll try to stop by and give your blog a look soon and thanks for making time to comment here.

Jeff – Isn’t it killer? Burton really did have a way with words and I’m sure his phrasing and golden voice melted countless hearts. He’s melted mine in many a movie.

Posted By Louis Hilhorst : March 24, 2011 3:35 pm

I THOUGHT IT NOT TO BE POSSIBLE FOR ME TO DROP A TEAR FOR A PASSING AWAY OF A MOVIE STAR, HOWEVER ,IT DID,
” JE VOUS SALUT, ELIZABETH !!

Posted By Louis Hilhorst : March 24, 2011 3:35 pm

I THOUGHT IT NOT TO BE POSSIBLE FOR ME TO DROP A TEAR FOR A PASSING AWAY OF A MOVIE STAR, HOWEVER ,IT DID,
” JE VOUS SALUT, ELIZABETH !!

Posted By Eric F. : March 24, 2011 4:44 pm

Kimberly – when you do get a chance to visit my site, backtrack to the introduction first before reading any posts. You’ll get a better sense of where my head is at and my general attitude toward film, past and present.

Thanks!

Posted By Eric F. : March 24, 2011 4:44 pm

Kimberly – when you do get a chance to visit my site, backtrack to the introduction first before reading any posts. You’ll get a better sense of where my head is at and my general attitude toward film, past and present.

Thanks!

Posted By Mary Jane : March 24, 2011 7:13 pm

Your article was very well-written and thought-provoking.

I think one reason she married so often was she couldn’t find a man who was a match for the wonderful, talented, intelligent person she was.

I really liked that photo of her with M. Clift. I always thought their appearances in A Place in the Sun to be one of the most mesmerizing film visuals I ever enjoyed. I hope someone in her family decides to come out with a book of candid or family photos of her to benefit one of her charities. I am sure the book would do well.

Posted By Mary Jane : March 24, 2011 7:13 pm

Your article was very well-written and thought-provoking.

I think one reason she married so often was she couldn’t find a man who was a match for the wonderful, talented, intelligent person she was.

I really liked that photo of her with M. Clift. I always thought their appearances in A Place in the Sun to be one of the most mesmerizing film visuals I ever enjoyed. I hope someone in her family decides to come out with a book of candid or family photos of her to benefit one of her charities. I am sure the book would do well.

Posted By Regis : March 24, 2011 8:42 pm

Fabulous tribute Kimberly..she was truly one of a kind-actress, humanitarian, and to those who knew her, Mom, friend, Grandma! (or maybe Gla-MaMa!) Unfortunately I cannot make it to the TCM festival this year, but for those who have never seen A Place in the Sun, they are in for a rare treat. Truly one of Elizabeth’s finest roles. Too bad the world lost Montgomery Clift so soon, it would have been interesting to see what else he would have done-although his body of work is also so wonderful. Thanks for letting us reply to your wonderful and dear tribute.

Posted By Regis : March 24, 2011 8:42 pm

Fabulous tribute Kimberly..she was truly one of a kind-actress, humanitarian, and to those who knew her, Mom, friend, Grandma! (or maybe Gla-MaMa!) Unfortunately I cannot make it to the TCM festival this year, but for those who have never seen A Place in the Sun, they are in for a rare treat. Truly one of Elizabeth’s finest roles. Too bad the world lost Montgomery Clift so soon, it would have been interesting to see what else he would have done-although his body of work is also so wonderful. Thanks for letting us reply to your wonderful and dear tribute.

Posted By michelle : March 24, 2011 9:13 pm

Very nice tribute, so sad elizabeth is gone, she was the most breath taking beauty in hollywood,a heart of gold, the angels have been blessed!

Posted By michelle : March 24, 2011 9:13 pm

Very nice tribute, so sad elizabeth is gone, she was the most breath taking beauty in hollywood,a heart of gold, the angels have been blessed!

Posted By marycat : March 25, 2011 12:54 am

It’s been two days, why hasn’t TCM altered their schedule for one of the greatest actresses ever? I would expect nothing less than a full-blown 3 or 4 day tribute, yet I can’t seem to find anything on TCM except pre-1930s movies; no mention of Elizabeth Taylor, no forum, no commentators, no tributes (not even the Newman tribute), no mention at all. What’s up? TCM should have been prepared for this. Yet they’ve really dropped the ball. What are they thinking? We’ve lost a great actress and humanitarian, and want to mourn her loss together by sharing her movies. What are they waiting for???

Posted By marycat : March 25, 2011 12:54 am

It’s been two days, why hasn’t TCM altered their schedule for one of the greatest actresses ever? I would expect nothing less than a full-blown 3 or 4 day tribute, yet I can’t seem to find anything on TCM except pre-1930s movies; no mention of Elizabeth Taylor, no forum, no commentators, no tributes (not even the Newman tribute), no mention at all. What’s up? TCM should have been prepared for this. Yet they’ve really dropped the ball. What are they thinking? We’ve lost a great actress and humanitarian, and want to mourn her loss together by sharing her movies. What are they waiting for???

Posted By Anne Roussell : March 25, 2011 6:36 am

Elizabeth was a beautiful woman and talented but she also had a
beautiful soul.I was a fan because she and Ted Kennedy were born
in the same month with me.We were all about the same age.I love
most of her films but I don’t like drama.I liked Elizabeth in a
film called, A Little Night Music.That film is never mentioned
when her films are listed.Of course she was excellent in Cat On
a Hot Tin Roof but I liked her in The Taming of the Shrew and
A Date With Judy.I hope the people who knew her said some of the
good things about her that I see in print now.

Posted By Anne Roussell : March 25, 2011 6:36 am

Elizabeth was a beautiful woman and talented but she also had a
beautiful soul.I was a fan because she and Ted Kennedy were born
in the same month with me.We were all about the same age.I love
most of her films but I don’t like drama.I liked Elizabeth in a
film called, A Little Night Music.That film is never mentioned
when her films are listed.Of course she was excellent in Cat On
a Hot Tin Roof but I liked her in The Taming of the Shrew and
A Date With Judy.I hope the people who knew her said some of the
good things about her that I see in print now.

Posted By outofthisworld1971 : March 25, 2011 7:59 am

A TRUE LEGEND! THE END OF AN ERA RIP ELIZABETH TAYLOR!

Posted By outofthisworld1971 : March 25, 2011 7:59 am

A TRUE LEGEND! THE END OF AN ERA RIP ELIZABETH TAYLOR!

Posted By Mary Jane : March 25, 2011 10:06 am

Marycat,

They are doing the tribute April 10. There are three mentions of Elizabeth on the main, opening page of TCM. Perhaps they are waiting until April 10 in order to “do it right”.

Posted By Mary Jane : March 25, 2011 10:06 am

Marycat,

They are doing the tribute April 10. There are three mentions of Elizabeth on the main, opening page of TCM. Perhaps they are waiting until April 10 in order to “do it right”.

Posted By Kimberly Lindbergs : March 25, 2011 2:25 pm

Thanks for all the kind comments, everyone and for taking the time to share your memories of Taylor with other fans.

Marycat – As I mentioned at the end of my piece, TCM is devoting 24 hours to celebrating Elizabeth Taylor’s life starting on April, 10th and they’re currently playing a tribute video for her during movie breaks, which you can see here:
http://www.tcm.com/mediaroom/video.html?id=383875&name=Elizabeth-Taylor-TCM-Original-TCM-Remembers

Having recently just watched one of the TCM employees discuss how programming works with Robert Osborne during the “Employee Picks Month” it seems that it can take a week or more to reorganize the TCM schedule and get the rights from various studios to show their films on TV. It’s doesn’t happen overnight and much to their credit, I don’t believe that the TCM staff sits around like vultures waiting for celebrities to die so they can share a canned obituary and a pre-programmed selection of films with viewers the moment someone passes away. There’s also the regular schedule and other program commitments to consider. I hope you’ll tune in on April 10th when TCM will be airing Giant, Raintree County, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Butterfield 8 and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? just to name a few of the movies scheduled to be shown.

Posted By Kimberly Lindbergs : March 25, 2011 2:25 pm

Thanks for all the kind comments, everyone and for taking the time to share your memories of Taylor with other fans.

Marycat – As I mentioned at the end of my piece, TCM is devoting 24 hours to celebrating Elizabeth Taylor’s life starting on April, 10th and they’re currently playing a tribute video for her during movie breaks, which you can see here:
http://www.tcm.com/mediaroom/video.html?id=383875&name=Elizabeth-Taylor-TCM-Original-TCM-Remembers

Having recently just watched one of the TCM employees discuss how programming works with Robert Osborne during the “Employee Picks Month” it seems that it can take a week or more to reorganize the TCM schedule and get the rights from various studios to show their films on TV. It’s doesn’t happen overnight and much to their credit, I don’t believe that the TCM staff sits around like vultures waiting for celebrities to die so they can share a canned obituary and a pre-programmed selection of films with viewers the moment someone passes away. There’s also the regular schedule and other program commitments to consider. I hope you’ll tune in on April 10th when TCM will be airing Giant, Raintree County, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, Butterfield 8 and Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? just to name a few of the movies scheduled to be shown.

Posted By Allan : March 25, 2011 2:30 pm

I grew up watchin Elizabeth on screen,in her many roles. I am
a senior citizen, four years younger at time of her passing.
She was talented and passionaly loyal.Her contributions in the
fight against AIDS were will not be forgotten. Her memory will also live on, through her films. I will miss her.
Allan

Posted By Allan : March 25, 2011 2:30 pm

I grew up watchin Elizabeth on screen,in her many roles. I am
a senior citizen, four years younger at time of her passing.
She was talented and passionaly loyal.Her contributions in the
fight against AIDS were will not be forgotten. Her memory will also live on, through her films. I will miss her.
Allan

Posted By Robert Monell : March 25, 2011 3:00 pm

Very eloquent tribute, Kimberly. She was true Hollywood Royalty and none of today’s actresses/celebrities can stand up to her. She was a courageous actress and human being who took on tough roles and controversial causes. She had guts and there is something now missing in a world without her. I always thought she made life more fun and she seemed to enjoy her life and live it to the fullest. That’s a lesson for us all. I remember when the Vatican attacked her. Your review of BOOM! is the best thing ever written about it. And I feel REFLECTIONS IS A GOLDEN EYE is my favorite of her films but is undervalued along with BOOM! and SECRET CEREMONY. I still have to get the latter two on DVD. I did see ASH WEDNESDAY and X,Y&ZEE theatrically and didn’t like them. But your passionate writing may force me to revisit and reevaluate them also. Great stills that you’ve posted. I’ve also posted another evocative image from SUDDENLY LAST SUMMER, another favorite, which is now my website icon as a tribute to her life.

Posted By Robert Monell : March 25, 2011 3:00 pm

Very eloquent tribute, Kimberly. She was true Hollywood Royalty and none of today’s actresses/celebrities can stand up to her. She was a courageous actress and human being who took on tough roles and controversial causes. She had guts and there is something now missing in a world without her. I always thought she made life more fun and she seemed to enjoy her life and live it to the fullest. That’s a lesson for us all. I remember when the Vatican attacked her. Your review of BOOM! is the best thing ever written about it. And I feel REFLECTIONS IS A GOLDEN EYE is my favorite of her films but is undervalued along with BOOM! and SECRET CEREMONY. I still have to get the latter two on DVD. I did see ASH WEDNESDAY and X,Y&ZEE theatrically and didn’t like them. But your passionate writing may force me to revisit and reevaluate them also. Great stills that you’ve posted. I’ve also posted another evocative image from SUDDENLY LAST SUMMER, another favorite, which is now my website icon as a tribute to her life.

Posted By Kimberly Lindbergs : March 25, 2011 4:17 pm

Allan – It’s wonderful to know that she has so many life long fans. I appreciate that you shared your thoughts with us.

Robert – Thanks so much! She was amazing and extremely courageous. I have lots of favorite Taylor films but REFLECTIONS is one of them. I have problems with ASH WEDNESDAY as a movie but Taylor’s performance is worth the price of admission and I still need to watch X,Y&ZEE. It’s one of the few Taylor films I haven’t seen yet. I own a copy, which someone was kind enough to send me but I just haven’t gotten around to watching it yet. Hope to make time for it this weekend. Doesn’t she look amazing in SUDDENLY LAST SUMMMER? She’s beautiful in that white bathing suit.

Posted By Kimberly Lindbergs : March 25, 2011 4:17 pm

Allan – It’s wonderful to know that she has so many life long fans. I appreciate that you shared your thoughts with us.

Robert – Thanks so much! She was amazing and extremely courageous. I have lots of favorite Taylor films but REFLECTIONS is one of them. I have problems with ASH WEDNESDAY as a movie but Taylor’s performance is worth the price of admission and I still need to watch X,Y&ZEE. It’s one of the few Taylor films I haven’t seen yet. I own a copy, which someone was kind enough to send me but I just haven’t gotten around to watching it yet. Hope to make time for it this weekend. Doesn’t she look amazing in SUDDENLY LAST SUMMMER? She’s beautiful in that white bathing suit.

Posted By Eric F. : March 25, 2011 4:19 pm

I wish with all my heart that TCM would sponsor a contest for “FAN PICKS MONTH” where fans of the channel could enter and if they won, would be on TV with Robert Osborne to discuss and introduce their favorite classic film. Oh, one can only hope!

Posted By Eric F. : March 25, 2011 4:19 pm

I wish with all my heart that TCM would sponsor a contest for “FAN PICKS MONTH” where fans of the channel could enter and if they won, would be on TV with Robert Osborne to discuss and introduce their favorite classic film. Oh, one can only hope!

Posted By Penny : March 25, 2011 4:52 pm

At 50 I have had the privilege of seeing many of Ms Taylor’s movies many times. Each time I am stunned by her beauty and awed by her performance.Personal most favorite is Cleopatra which to me is Elizabeth Taylor. Strong, beautiful and still a woman completely.

Rest in Peace lovely lady. And thank you for leaving such a wonderful legacy for generations to come.

Posted By Penny : March 25, 2011 4:52 pm

At 50 I have had the privilege of seeing many of Ms Taylor’s movies many times. Each time I am stunned by her beauty and awed by her performance.Personal most favorite is Cleopatra which to me is Elizabeth Taylor. Strong, beautiful and still a woman completely.

Rest in Peace lovely lady. And thank you for leaving such a wonderful legacy for generations to come.

Posted By mbm : March 26, 2011 9:33 am

more quotes on Elizabeth:

“She was a true star, because she not only had beauty and notoriety; Elizabeth Taylor had talent. As a friend she was always, always there for me. I’ll miss her for the rest of my life, but I was so lucky to have known her.” – Liza Minnelli

“No one else could equal Elizabeth’s beauty and sexuality. Women liked her and men adored her, and her love for her children is enduring. She was a symbol of stardom. Her legacy will last.” – Debbie Reynolds

“As she herself said, she lived with passion — yes, she had great highs and enormous lows. But alongside Elvis and Marilyn and JFK, her name and presence will survive when most of today’s mega-stars are long forgotten.” – Joan Collins

Posted By mbm : March 26, 2011 9:33 am

more quotes on Elizabeth:

“She was a true star, because she not only had beauty and notoriety; Elizabeth Taylor had talent. As a friend she was always, always there for me. I’ll miss her for the rest of my life, but I was so lucky to have known her.” – Liza Minnelli

“No one else could equal Elizabeth’s beauty and sexuality. Women liked her and men adored her, and her love for her children is enduring. She was a symbol of stardom. Her legacy will last.” – Debbie Reynolds

“As she herself said, she lived with passion — yes, she had great highs and enormous lows. But alongside Elvis and Marilyn and JFK, her name and presence will survive when most of today’s mega-stars are long forgotten.” – Joan Collins

Posted By m schlossheimer : March 26, 2011 11:54 am

just as we were recently reminded by the 100th anniversary of Ronald Reagen’s birth, those born within the 31 days of Oscar are no longer given birthday tributes anymore. But while the late president had maybe four or five nominated films, Elizabeth Taylor Oscar films could fill an entire 24 hours and then some.
Doing that in August is too easy because any films can be shown
but even lesser Taylor films like Butterfield 8, The VIPs and Sandiper won best actress, supporting actress and song. So next February do that and fill out the month with others born up to March 3, stars like Gable, Turner, Lemmon, Woodward, Niven, Arthur Kennedy, Adolphe Menjou and Thelma Ritter.

Posted By m schlossheimer : March 26, 2011 11:54 am

just as we were recently reminded by the 100th anniversary of Ronald Reagen’s birth, those born within the 31 days of Oscar are no longer given birthday tributes anymore. But while the late president had maybe four or five nominated films, Elizabeth Taylor Oscar films could fill an entire 24 hours and then some.
Doing that in August is too easy because any films can be shown
but even lesser Taylor films like Butterfield 8, The VIPs and Sandiper won best actress, supporting actress and song. So next February do that and fill out the month with others born up to March 3, stars like Gable, Turner, Lemmon, Woodward, Niven, Arthur Kennedy, Adolphe Menjou and Thelma Ritter.

Posted By Robert Monell : March 26, 2011 3:01 pm

The usually acerbic critic Pauline Kael gave a good review to X,Y&ZEE writing that it was her favorite ET performance. Like to hear your opinion. Also, have you seen THE DRIVER’S SEAT (1975)? Is that on DVD? I hope you review it and I hope they show BOOM!, SECRET CEREMONY and THE DRIVER’S SEAT on TCM. I’ll be watching it all day on Apr 10.

Posted By Robert Monell : March 26, 2011 3:01 pm

The usually acerbic critic Pauline Kael gave a good review to X,Y&ZEE writing that it was her favorite ET performance. Like to hear your opinion. Also, have you seen THE DRIVER’S SEAT (1975)? Is that on DVD? I hope you review it and I hope they show BOOM!, SECRET CEREMONY and THE DRIVER’S SEAT on TCM. I’ll be watching it all day on Apr 10.

Posted By dukeroberts : March 30, 2011 1:16 pm

As I was born in 1974, I never got to see any of the aforementioned films on the big screen. My first memories of Elizabeth Taylor were from seeing The Mirror Crack’d on the big screen, which I remember enjoying very much, and from being forced to watch General Hospital by my sisters. It was only a few years later that I found out how beautiful she was when she was younger. I had a mini shrine of pictures of her cut out from magazines in the mid 80′s; the bustier the better. She was an incredible talent and beauty and will be missed. My favorite movie of hers is probably Life with Father. She was so sweet, beautiful and innocent in that film.

Posted By dukeroberts : March 30, 2011 1:16 pm

As I was born in 1974, I never got to see any of the aforementioned films on the big screen. My first memories of Elizabeth Taylor were from seeing The Mirror Crack’d on the big screen, which I remember enjoying very much, and from being forced to watch General Hospital by my sisters. It was only a few years later that I found out how beautiful she was when she was younger. I had a mini shrine of pictures of her cut out from magazines in the mid 80′s; the bustier the better. She was an incredible talent and beauty and will be missed. My favorite movie of hers is probably Life with Father. She was so sweet, beautiful and innocent in that film.

Posted By Gayle : April 6, 2011 1:43 pm

Kimberly, you’ve written a lovely, thoughtful tribute. Being 56, I feel like I’m from the ‘Liz and Dick’ era. I can remember the scandal during the making of Cleopatra even if I was a child.

When you look at photos of her throughout her life, she was not only a lovely child, but she may have been the only Hollywood studio era actress to have made the transition from child to adolescent to young woman in seamless fashion without an awkward period in which she couldn’t get roles. At 15 she was already intoxicatingly beautiful and as a woman, not a teenager.

I will miss her presence and appreciate her great roles as well as her support of AIDS charities, a true pioneer when others shrank from providing assistance. RIP, Dame Elizabeth

Posted By Gayle : April 6, 2011 1:43 pm

Kimberly, you’ve written a lovely, thoughtful tribute. Being 56, I feel like I’m from the ‘Liz and Dick’ era. I can remember the scandal during the making of Cleopatra even if I was a child.

When you look at photos of her throughout her life, she was not only a lovely child, but she may have been the only Hollywood studio era actress to have made the transition from child to adolescent to young woman in seamless fashion without an awkward period in which she couldn’t get roles. At 15 she was already intoxicatingly beautiful and as a woman, not a teenager.

I will miss her presence and appreciate her great roles as well as her support of AIDS charities, a true pioneer when others shrank from providing assistance. RIP, Dame Elizabeth

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