We lost a Goddess of the Silver Screen today - Liz Taylor - (Dame Elizabeth Taylor Hilton Wilding Todd Fisher Burton Burton Warner Fortensky).
Understand I am not like Tired of Queen at the Movies - my gay credit is thin on films and musicals - however I do have a certain few favorite actors and actresses that are almost idols of mine - and Liz has always been up there at or near the top.
While her filmography is very long, my favorite films starring her are Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolfe and The Taming of the Shrew - both absolute classics as far as I am concerned. Her depiction of Martha in Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolfe set the tone for crazy, controlling alcoholic women in my psyche ever since I first saw it as a child.
I am not ashamed to say that I actually cried when I read the headline and realized another great was gone - and no I didn't know her personally - but it still feels like a kick in the gut when someone this big with this much history, talent and willpower dies.
Liz Taylor was an actress - celebrity - mad Hollywood Divorcée - philanthropist - volunteer - artist - comedian - her many marriages were something even she made a lot of fun of - she once said that according to her mother, Liz didn't open her eyes for eight days after she was born - and when she finally did open them, the first thing she saw was an engagement ring and she was hooked on them ever since.
She was an AIDS activist in a time that it was not popular to be one - when her friend Rock Hudson died of AIDS in the mid 80s she lept to the forefront of the AIDS fight and not only started raising money for research, treatment and prevention but co-founded AmfAR to help fight AIDS through research and in 1991 founded the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation to fund AIDS services world wide through grant awards.
I never tired of watching her make public appearances - and I thought she was very very brave to continue to make them after she was confined to a wheel chair - many other women would have secluded themselves rather than let the world see how such a proud and beautiful woman had aged and become infirm.
Liz Taylor was and will forever be miles above the rest of the crowd - she will be greatly missed and she leaves behind a shining example of what it can mean to be a Goddess of the Silver Screen.