logo
g Text Version
Beauty & Self
Books & Music
Career
Computers
Education
Family
Food & Wine
Health & Fitness
Hobbies & Crafts
Home & Garden
Money
News & Politics
Relationships
Religion & Spirituality
Sports
Travel & Culture
TV & Movies

dailyclick
Bored? Games!
Nutrition
Postcards
Take a Quiz
Rate My Photo

new
Romance Movies
Creativity
Family Travel
Southwest USA
Irish Culture
Home Finance
Comedy Movies


dailyclick
All times in EST

Full Schedule
g
g Classic Film Site

BellaOnline's Classic Film Editor

g

The Burtons with Zeffirelli

Guest Author - Amber Grey

On the set of "Cleopatra" (1964), one of the most epic love affairs in history occurred between Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor. The press followed their every move and the Vatican was quick to condemn their affair because Taylor was married to Eddie Fisher at the time. It was a mere eleven days after Taylor's divorce to Fisher that she married Burton on March 15, 1964. The press continued to follow their every move as a couple but none of the headlines could accurately capture the scintillating passion between the two actors. With starring in Zeffirelli's film, "The Taming of the Shrew" (1967), the public could watch it all themselves as the two actors portrayed a romance of equal devotion and fury.

Originally the film was a vehicle for Italian goddess Sophia Loren and actor Marcello Mastroianni when suddenly the director Franco Zeffirelli wanted fiery real-life couple Elizbath Taylor and Richard Burton. Columbia Pictures was nervous to say the least. Three years prior, 20th Century Fox nearly went bankrupt funding the box office disaster "Cleopatra" (1964), and the studio feared they might share the same fate.

Although this was Zeffirelli's debut film, the man who had a brilliant resume of delivering one successful lavish opera after another, convinced the studio otherwise. And according to Zeffirelli's memoir, "Zeffirelli: An Autobiography" when he first met the Burton's in their hotel room, they seemed to be already living the roles of Petruchio and Katherine. With Taylor chasing a pet bush baby and Burton completely ignoring the situation, instead talking to Zeffirelli, the couple would snap at each other throughout the meeting.

After the meeting, the Burtons and Zeffirelli found they could make the film together. Richard Burton was especially fond of working with the director because of his deep passion for opera and theater. The actors even sacrificed their own salaries in order to make a personal investment in the film and opted to take a percentage of the gross when the film debuted. Their financial and artistic gamble would be met when the film did very well at the box office and was given a warm reception by critics.

According to a short interview with Zeffirelli that is periodically shown on Turner Classic Movies channel, that while on set Taylor was famous for being late to the set because she would be touching herself up. It was only Burton who would be able to get Taylor out of her dressing room, but once Taylor was on set, she became the hardworking actress she is known for being in her work.

In the same interview, the director was confident, that while the film sacrifices most of the dialogue from the original play, his adaptation of "The Taming of the Shrew" delivers the boisterous Italian atmosphere for Shakespeare's play. And he would be right.

After the film, Burton and Taylor would divorce after ten years of marriage. Then they would be married once more in the autumn of 1975 but subsequently divorce again in July 1976. Although divorced, they made 10 films together including the classic "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf" (1966). Their love affair continued even after Burton's death when one of Richard's poems was read as a eulogy at Elizabeth's funeral in 2011. She was buried with Burton's last love letter to her.
This site needs an editor - click to learn more!

Add The+Burtons+with+Zeffirelli to Twitter Add The+Burtons+with+Zeffirelli to Facebook Add The+Burtons+with+Zeffirelli to MySpace Add The+Burtons+with+Zeffirelli to Del.icio.us Digg The+Burtons+with+Zeffirelli Add The+Burtons+with+Zeffirelli to Yahoo My Web Add The+Burtons+with+Zeffirelli to Google Bookmarks Add The+Burtons+with+Zeffirelli to Stumbleupon Add The+Burtons+with+Zeffirelli to Reddit




Elizabeth Taylor's Fight For Aids
From Childe Star To Icon
Were They Or Weren't They
RSS
Related Articles
Editor's Picks Articles
Top Ten Articles
Previous Features
Site Map


For FREE email updates, subscribe to the Classic Film Newsletter


Past Issues


print
Printer Friendly
bookmark
Bookmark
tell friend
Tell a Friend
forum
Forum
email
Email Editor


Content copyright © 2014 by Amber Grey. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Amber Grey. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact BellaOnline Administration for details.

g


g features
Classic Les Miserables Adaptations

Not a Christmas Movie?

Remembering Esme Chandlee

Archives | Site Map

forum
Forum
email
Contact

Past Issues
memberscenter


vote
Poetry
Daily
Weekly
Monthly
Less than Monthly



BellaOnline on Facebook
g


| About BellaOnline | Privacy Policy | Advertising | Become an Editor |
Website copyright © 2014 Minerva WebWorks LLC. All rights reserved.


BellaOnline Editor