Tuesday, August 7, 1984
The Michigan Daily
Reactions vary to Burton's death
HOLLYWOOD (AP)-Richard Bur-
ton's sudden death shocked friends and
colleagues in the movie industry, where
he was remembered as wild, charming,
driven and-above all-a "born actor."
But Elizabeth Taylor, Burton's par-
tner in a stormy, headline-making love
affair that saw them married and
divorced twice, was too distressed te
issue any statement after learning of
his death Sunday in Switzerland. He
died at 58 of a cerebral hemorrhage.
"I just got off the phone with Liz and
the kids," Miss Taylor's spokeswoman,_
Chen Sam, said in New York. "Of cour-
se it's a schock."
Burton and Taylor divorced their
respective spouses to marry in 1964 af.
ter falling in love while making the 1962
The scandal surrounding their
romance-and Burton's bouts with
alcohol-may have prevented him from
fulfilling his promise as a stage legend,
said Sir John Gielgud, who last worked
with Burton two years ago on the film,
"He was a born actor," Gielgud said.
"He chose a rather mad way of
throwing away his theater career, but
obviously he became very famous and a
world figure through being a film star."
Wildness is not necessarily a bad
quality in an actor, Gielgud said, "but
he was very wild and had scandal
around him all the time, and I think in
theater circles that would not be ap-
But, Gielgud added, "He was serious,
charming, with tremendous skill. He
was awfully good to people and
Richard Harris was too stunned to
speak of the death of his longtime
"It's terrible, it's shattering," said
Harris, starring ina stage production of
Camelot in San Diego. Turning away
from reporters, Harris waved his hands
across his face and said, "I can't," and
quickly walked downstairs to a stage
"He had a most original gift," said
actress Olivia DeHavilland from her
home in Paris. "I'm awfully sorry he's
gone. He was a remarkable person, a
splendid actor, but a rather troubled
spirit." During the making of My
Cousin Rachel in 1952, "he would lose
patience with himself and a lot of ex-
traordinary words would come out of
him," she said. "Then he would turn
around and say, 'Oh, I beg your par-
don,' and I would say, 'Richard, that's
all right. I don't understand Welsh.' "
But Burton had been speaking
English, Ms. DeHavilland said.
"We lost one of our greatest actors,"
said Victor Mature, who appeared with
Burton ip 1953's The Robe.
"Henhad charisma, charm, tone.... He
was an ultra-professional at all
times....A monstrous- perfectionist. He
wanted everything to be completely
perfect or else he would be annoyed at
himself and nobody else."
Charlton Heston said he met Burton
35 years ago when they were appearing
in separate shows on Broadway. They
never worked together, "but I was a
longtime fan of his enormous gifts,"
"He was a marvelously gifted actor,"
Heston said. "He was perhaps rightly
regarded the heir to Laurence Olivier
and John Gielgud among the British
actors of his generation."
Lord Olivier called Burton "a very
fine actor," said his "early death is a
great tragedy to the theater world, the
film world and the public.
"I was looking forward to working
with him again on his next film,"
Olivier said from his home in Sussex,
He and Burton were planning to
collaborate on The Wild Geese II, in
which Olivier was to play Rudolph Hess
and Burton a mercenary involved in the
rescue of the Nazi leader from Spandau
Prison. In the original Wild Geese, Bur-
ton rescued an African leader.
Hal Wallis, who produced Becket and
Anne of the Thousand Days-which
both earned nominations for
best-actor Oscars-said Burton's death
was "a very untimely and sad thing to
"I was very fond of him," Wallis said.
"He was a most professional performer
during our association. He was always
on the job, always there no matter what
went on the day before or the night
The films of Richard Burton
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Here is a The Tamingafthe Shew, 1967.
selection of feature films inrwhich Dr. Faust, 1967.
actor Richard Burton appeared: TheComedians, 1967.
The LastDays of Dowlyn, 1948. Boom,, 1968.
Now Barabbas Was a Robber, 1949. Whee Eagles Dare, 198
My Cousin Rachel, 1952. Aneathe Thousand Days, 1970.
The Robe, 1953. Raid on Rommel, 1971.
The DesertRats, 1953. The Assassinationof Trotsky, 1972.
Alexander the Great, 1956. Blueeerd, 1972.
The Longest Day, 1962. Exorcist 11: ThelHeretic, 1977.
Cleopatra, 1962. Equus, 1977.
Becket, 1%4. The Medusa Touch, 1978.
The Night of theIguana, 1%4. The Wild Geese, 1978.
The Sandpiper-s, 1965. Tristan &Iseult, 1981.
The Spy WhoCamei efrom the Cold, 1%5. Wagner, 1983.
Who's Afraid of virginia Woolf?, 196. Nineteen Eighty-four, 1984.
SHORT OR LONG
H airs tyles f or GUM N ew s in
Men and Women
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JAMIE LEE CURTIS @ C. THOMAS HOWELL
... dead at 58
have a funny way
of coming true.
A selection of campus film
Picnic at Hanging Rock
(Peter Weir, 1975)
Peter Weir's haunting cinematic
tour de force about a day trip to a
shady mountain spot in the Australian
Outback. When several schoolgirls go
for a walk, the suspense becomes
mesmerizing and deliciously unner-
ving. Don't go for a walk in the Arb af-
terwards. (Wednesday and Thursday,
9:30 at the Michigan Theatre.)
An American in Paris
(Vincente Minnelli, 1951)
The French and the Americans
have never been so firmly allied than
in this post-war musical classic
starring Gene Kelly, Leslie Caron,
and the music of George and Ira. The
dancing is divine, the sets elaborate,
and the spirits high. (Friday,'9:35 at
(David Lynch, 1977)
Sometimes revolting, sometimes
eloquent, often absurd, Eraserhead
has something for everybody. Lynch's
black and white cinematography is
steep with Caligari expressionism,
making even the Cornish hen scene
look artful. (Friday at 7:30, 9:10 and
10:50 at the Michigan Theatre.)
Monty Python and the Holy
(Terry Gilliam and Terry Jones, 1975)
So what if you've already seen this
one, see it again. Coveted memories
will be rejuvenated: The knights who
say "ni", the search for the shrub-
bery, the exploits in the castle An-
thrax, and of course that nice little
bunny. (Saturday, 7, 8:40 and 10:20, at
(Preston Sturges, 1948)
Rex Harrison stars as a symphony
conductor who thinks his wife is
cheating on him. The recent remake
starring Dudley Moore doesn't come
close to Harrison's relentless drive of
dialogue. (Saturday, 9:30 at MLB 4).
-Compiled by Deborah Lewis
DAILY 1:00, 7:00, 9:00
Q ALFRED HITCHCOCK'S 3Nl'I p$
"THE MAN WHO KNEW TOO MUCH"
DAILY 1:00, 7:30, 9:40