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Elizabeth Taylor

In the 30's and 40's, movie studios such as Universal and MGM created Hollywood's "Golden Age." The industry machine created glamour, fame, and consummate movie stars. This era would not have been possible without Elizabeth Taylor.

Elizabeth Taylor
Elizabeth Taylor

Elizabeth Taylor's career, her fame, and her humanitarian nature all serve as the classic example of what movie stardom is. Her work in film elevated cinema beyond artistic entertainment, establishing it as a permanent part of culture as we know it. Her status as a star, her eternal beauty, and her activism helped to define the celebrity ideal.

Born in London to American parents, Elizabeth Taylor played her first movie role at age 9 in 1942 and, by 2011, had over 70 acting role titles to her name. She won two Academy Awards for Best Actress for her roles in BUtterfeld 8 in 1960 and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf in 1966. Before her first Oscar, she was nominated three years in a row, winning the fourth year.

Later in life, Taylor dedicated herself to fighting AIDS around the world. She established the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation raising over $200 million for AIDS treatment and research. Taylor took the effect that AIDS had on the Hollywood industry very personally when she lost many friends and colleagues to the disease. She is credited with using her fame to help extinguish the stigma that was initially associated with AIDS, and with helping to turn the fight against the disease into a humanitarian cause.

The sheer number of movies that Taylor worked on is astonishing. With over seventy titles to her credit, she managed to successfully manage the transition from child star to adolescent star to adult star. Not only did she transition successfully, her career managed to build momentum and success with each new phase.

Many attribute her lasting and growing success to her down to earth attitude and approachable demeanor. Even though she possessed remarkable beauty and talent, she always treated others with simple kindness and has been referred to as quiet and unassuming. Taylor was also not afraid of hard work and did what was required to increase what she was worth in the industry.

A habitual romantic, Taylor married eight times to seven men, marrying Richard Burton twice consecutively. Taylor and Burton, who spent ten years married and working together, are considered one of the most successful Hollywood movie star couples of all time. At one point during their careers, half of all Box Office dollars could be attributed to the movies being made by Taylor and Burton. They appeared together in 11 films, including Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf that won Taylor her second Oscar.

Taylor exuded a sex appeal without having it overpower her career or undermine her ability as a serious film actress. Her unique look, with her violet-blue eyes and focused demur, transfixed film executives and audiences. She had what could only be described as that certain something that translates into star quality.

Living her life in the public eye took its toll as Taylor struggled with both alcohol and prescription pain medicine addiction. She sought help from the Betty Ford Clinic twice. The tabloid press made a mockery of her many illnesses as her age advanced. At the time of her death on March 23, 2011 from congestive heart failure, Taylor was survived by her four children, ten grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren. Elizabeth Taylor is one of the most famous women along with Marilyn Monroe that the movie industry has ever known.


There is a secret you don't know …

Besides the factual Elizabeth Taylor biography presented above there is a little secret that shall be revealed now. In a former life Elizabeth Taylor was in fact a cat on a hot tin roof, but compensated by wearing little kiddy bunny slippers so that she could stay up high as long as she wanted.


 

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