Remembering Elizabeth Taylor: 5 Memorable Movie Moments

Elizabeth Taylor Beach - H 2011
Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Elizabeth Taylor Beach - H 2011

The iconic actress was born 83 years ago on Feb. 27.

Over the span of six decades, Elizabeth Taylor evolved from child actress to screen icon. The dark-haired, violet-eyed star first hit it big at just 12 years old in 1944's National Velvet, before becoming a symbol of old Hollywood glamour in 1960s films such as Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

The actress passed away on March 23, 2011 at the age of 79 due to congestive heart failure. She would have turned 83 years old today.

Below are five of Taylor's most memorable moments in film:

Giant (1956)

Taylor starred as a farm owner's daughter caught in the middle of a love triangle between a Texas cattle rancher (Rock Hudson) and a poor, local handyman (James Dean) in the George Stevens-directed romance drama.

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958)

In the film adaptation of Tennessee Williams' Pulitzer Prize-winning play, the actress starred as the seductive and strong-willed wife of Paul Newman, who played the alcoholic son of a wealthy Southern family. The film, directed by Richard Brooks, garnered six Oscar nominations at the 1959 Academy Awards, including best actress for Taylor.

BUtterfield 8 (1960)

The actress played the leading role of a glamorous fashion model and call girl who instigates an affair with a married man (Laurence Harvey) in Daniel Mann's drama film. Taylor took home her first Oscar for best actress at the 1961 Academy Awards.

Cleopatra (1963)

Taylor took on the role of Egypt's ruling queen Cleopatra VII in the historical epic directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz.Cleopatra was nominated for nine Academy Awards in 1964 and won in four categories.

Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? (1966)

Taylor and co-star Richard Burton starred as a bitter, middle-aged couple in the midst of a marriage fallout in the Mike Nichols-directed film, which was adapted from Edward Albee's 1962 play of the same title. Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? scored five Oscar wins in 1967, including best actress.