Richard Burton will receive a posthumous star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on March 1. The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce confirmed that the actor’s star will be placed next to Elizabeth Taylor’s star, in order to honor one of the most famous theatrical relationships and greatest love stories in history.
The ceremony will be part of the celebrations to commemorate the 50th anniversary of ‘Cleopatra,’ the historical biography that was directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz and starred Burton and Taylor in their first on-screen feature. The Academy Award-winning film was released by 20th Century Fox in 1963, and will be available for the first time on Blu-ray this year from Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment.
Burton and Taylor’s relationship began when they started filming the drama together. Until then, Burton who was the son of a Welsh coal miner, was better known as a distinguished Shakespearean stage actor. The actor’s subsequent marriage to the actress made headlines around the world, and they went to star in nine other films together, including ‘The Taming of the Shrew,’ ‘The V.I.P.’ and ‘Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?,’ for which Taylor won her second Oscar.
Welsh business academic Professor Dylan Jones-Evans led the campaign on behalf of the Western Mail, the national newspaper of Wales, to secure Burton’s star. “I am delighted that Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment has agreed to partner with us to recognise one of Wales’ greatest ever actors with a star as part of the 50th Anniversary celebrations of ‘Cleopatra,’” said Prof. Jones-Evans. “I am also sure all the people of Wales will be thrilled that he is receiving this accolade on the most special day for the Welsh nation, St David’s Day.”
Prof. Jones-Evans added that the public recognition for Burton’s body of work will help raise the profile of Wales internationally. It will “also help to raise funds to provide scholarships in the legendary actor’s name to support young Welsh talent at the Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama,” he added.
Written by: Karen Benardello