AS SEEN ON:
'Saturday Night Live'
AS PLAYED BY:
Top row, from left:
Bottom row, from left:
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer signed Taylor to $100 a week for up to three months to appear as "Priscilla" in the film "Lassie Come Home".
"Lassie Come Home" featured child star Roddy McDowall, with whom Taylor would share a lifelong friendship. Upon its release in 1943, the film received favourable attention for both McDowall and Taylor. On the basis of her performance in "Lassie Come Home" MGM signed Taylor to a conventional seven-year contract at $100 a week but increasing at regular intervals until it reached a hefty $750 during the seventh year. Her first assignment under her new contract at MGM was a loan-out to 20th Century Fox for the character of Helen Burns in a film version of the Charlotte Bronte novel "Jane Eyre" (1944).
During this period she also returned to England to appear in another Roddy McDowall picture for MGM, "The White Cliffs of Dover" (1944). But it was Taylor's persistence in campaigning for the role of Velvet Brown in MGM's "National Velvet" that skyrocketed Taylor to stardom at the tender age of 12. Taylor's character, Velvet Brown, is a young girl who trains her beloved horse to win the Grand National. "National Velvet", which also costarred beloved American favorite Mickey Rooney and English newcomer Angela Lansbury, became an overwhelming success upon its release in December 1944. Many years later Taylor called it "the most exciting film" she had ever made, and the film changed her life forever. Although it vastly increased her star power, many of her back problems were traced to when she hurt her body falling off a horse during its filming.
Her first box office success in an adult role came as Kay Banks in the romantic comedy "Father Of The Bride"(1950), alongside Spencer Tracy and Joan Bennett. The film spawned a sequel, "Father's Little Dividend" (1951), which Taylor's costar Spencer Tracy summarised with "boring… boring… boring". The film did well at the box office but it would be Taylor's next picture that would set the course for her career as a dramatic actress.
In late 1949, Taylor had begun filming George Stevens' "A Place In The Sun". Upon its release in 1951, Taylor was hailed for her performance as Angela Vickers, a spoiled socialite who comes between George Eastman (Clift) and his poor, pregnant factory-working girlfriend Alice Tripp (Shelley Winters). The film became the pivotal performance of Taylor's career as critics acclaimed it as a classic, a reputation it sustained throughout the next 50 years of cinema history. The New York Times' A.H. Weiler wrote, "Elizabeth's delineation of the rich and beauteous Angela is the top effort of her career", and the Boxoffice reviewer unequivocally stated "Miss Taylor deserves an Academy Award".
Following a more substantial role opposite Rock Hudson and James Dean in George Stevens' epic "Giant" (1956), Taylor was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress four years in a row for "Raintree County" (1957) opposite Montgomery Clift; "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" (1958) opposite Paul Newman; "Suddenly, Last Summer" (1959) with Montgomery Clift, Katharine Hepburn and Mercedes McCambridge; and finally winning for "BUtterfield 8" (1960), which co-starred then husband Eddie Fisher.
"I thought I would win for 'The Apartment',
but then Elizabeth Taylor had a tracheotomy."
One of the basic rules about the TV dimension of Skitlandia is that unlike other TV dimensions, the faces of its inhabitants can change with no splainin. Sometimes they may look like their counterparts in other TV Lands (Vinnie Barbarino and Lenny & Squiggy in the "Tarantino's Welcome Back, Kotter" sketch on 'SNL', for example), but it's rare and never lasts. If the TV character or celebrity is popular enough, they could go through more regenerations than a Time Lord!
So Elizabeth Taylor was a prime example of this happening. These are just six of the incarnations, and they're all from 'Saturday Night Live' alone! She was also lampooned on 'The Benny Hill Show' (Tune in tomorrow!) and on 'MadTV' (as seen to the left).