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Hollywood’s greatest star dims

Elizabth Taylor has died in Los Angeles, aged 79.

Nevil Gibson
Thu, 24 Mar 2011

The biggest star of her film generation, Elizabeth Taylor, has died in the Cedars-Sinai Medical Centre in Los Angeles, aged 79.

She died of congestive heart failure after being admitted to hospital earlier this week. Her four children and other family were with her when she died peacefully in her sleep.

People magazine describes her as a “A stunning beauty with mesmerising violet eyes and a double set of eyelashes, Taylor was catapulted to superstardom as a child, though she lived larger than life both on screen and off even long after she had retired from movies and became a perfume mogul.”

She appeared in her first film as a child in 1942 and became a star at 12 in the major hit National Velvet in 1944.

She went on to be the biggest female star of the 1950s and 1960s with such films as A Place in the Sun, Giant, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and two for which she won Best Actress Oscars: Butterfield 8 and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

She pioneered today’s celebrity culture with seven marriages, including two to co-star Richard Burton, a line of perfume and support for charity causes. In later life she was a champion for research into HIV/AIDS.

In 1993, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences recognised this work with its Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award.

Elizabeth Rosemond Taylor was born in Hampstead, England, the second child of Francis Taylor, an American art gallery owner working abroad, and his wife Sara Sothern, who was a former actress,

The family moved to Los Angeles before the start of World War II.

Taylor, who was made a dame by Queen Elizabeth II, was the first film actor to be paid a million dollars, for her role in1963's Cleopatra,

Husbands: Seven, including actor Michael Wilding, producer Michael Todd and singer Eddie Fisher.

Family: Michael Wilding, Christopher Wilding, Liza Todd and Maria Burton; 10 grandchildren and four great grandchildren.

Other memorable roles: Suddenly, Last Summer, The Comedians, Reflections in a Golden Eye, The Taming of the Shew.

Films: 70 are listed in the IMDB.

Nevil Gibson
Thu, 24 Mar 2011
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Hollywood’s greatest star dims