Elizabeth Taylor: The Auction w/t (1 x 90′) – This documentary explores the Hollywood legend’s extraordinary life story through some of her most precious possessions which feature in landmark auctions in New York and London.
With exclusive access to Christie’s, this film brings to life the excitement and frenetic bidding at the auctions as millions of pounds are bid for the ‘Crown Jewels of Hollywood’ – some selling for 50 times their pre-sale estimates. Each item of jewellery, art and haute couture, provides a springboard into a key period of her life.
The documentary opens a window into her character and her relationship with jewellery, gaining access to the people central to Taylor’s life, including Joan Collins, Liza Minnelli and Mickey Rooney, and also her favourite jewellery and fashion designers – Bulgari, Cartier, Van Cleef & Arpels, Dior and Valentino, who created many of her extraordinary outfits.
Jeweller Gianni Bulgari sold the first pieces of jewellery bought by Burton for Taylor while filming Cleopatra. And we’ll hear from fashion designer Valentino who produced many of her extraordinary outfits on how Elizabeth would procure free items using her feminine charms as she loved to receive gifts.
Actor Robert Hardy reveals what Elizabeth’s 33.19-carat diamond ring actually looked like – considering she never took it off. The ‘La Peregrina’ pearl given to Elizabeth by Richard Burton surpassed all estimations selling for a record £7.6m and the film hears a surprising tale from Ward Landrigan, who originally delivered the 500-year-old pearl to Taylor.
Filmed in London, Paris, Rome, New York and Los Angeles, the film visits locations synonymous with Taylor including The Dorchester in London and The Ritz in Paris. Interviewing people who have never-before spoken about their relationship with her, this documentary tells the definitive story of her life.
Channel: Channel 4
Producer: Silver River
TX: Spring 2012
Source: Channel 4 press office