“There is no deodorant like success,” said Elizabeth Taylor.
I don’t know about you but I’ve seen the movie trailer to the coming “Liz and Dick” and although I know it won’t be a patch on the real-life Burtons of movie fame, I just can’t wait to catch Lindsay Lohan as Elizabeth Taylor!
Since I traveled with Elizabeth and Richard back in the day and wrote about their tempestuous passionate marriage in London, Paris, Rome, New York, L.A. and Leningrad, I feel like a minor authority.
But, consider the fallout from the recent Lindsay Lohan-nixing of a Barbara Walters interview on ABC’s “20/20.” Who knew that umpteen years ago, in 2006, at a pre-Oscar party in the home of super agent Bryan Lourd, I was the person who went across a crowded room and corralled a young actress named Lindsay, saying to her, “There is someone here you need to meet”?
Lindsay came with me willingly and I took her to the fireplace where I said, “Lindsay, this is Barbara Walters!”
So it all started back then. At the time, Lindsay Lohan seemed really innocent, super-sweet and delighted to meet a legend. I think today, this talented girl, aiming for a true comeback, should control her new PR advisers and keep to her original commitments to interviewers of stature.
But she hasn’t taken any advice from me in a long, long time, so why would she start now?
P.S. Although there were cries of horror from Taylor fans when Lindsay was cast in “Liz and Dick,” I wrote that the casting made some sense – there were parallels in their lives – child star with troublesome parents becomes voluptuous teen vixen, undereducated and overindulged. (When Lindsay was 16, I commented that she was “inherently dramatic,” just like La Liz.)
The difference is that Taylor was a protected MGM jewel and the press was not quite as voracious back then. Ironically, it was Taylor’s later, scandalous love life that helped create the paparazzi that hounds Lindsay today! Elizabeth had many habits and romances that were carefully hidden or retooled by the old image-makers. By the time Elizabeth broke away and was an independent entity, eating and drinking and loving just as she pleased, she was beyond being hurt by “bad” publicity. Scandal only enhanced her stardom. Lindsay has not been so lucky.
So it is refreshing to find I am not alone in saying, “give the girl a chance,” as Elizabeth Taylor. Writer M.G. Lord in The Hollywood Reporter did a bang-up job comparing the two, and coming to the conclusion that if Lohan can model herself on the best aspects of Taylor’s survival instincts, she too, might survive. Rather than be devoured like Marilyn, Judy, Monty, Heath Ledger, Michael Jackson and others.
The writer says that “few in the Taylor camp are pleased” by the movie or its star. Taylor’s children are especially horrified, but he still sees hope for “Liz and Dick” and also Miss L. So do I, but we shall see.
Tribune Media Services