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Burton Gets His Star

2 Mar, 2013 By: Chris Tribbey


Dame Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton’s daughters Kate and Maria, the president of the Royal Welsh College, famous actors, dozens of media, more than a hundred fans. The only person missing was Burton himself.

Cleopatra actor Richard Burton, who died in 1984 at the age of 58, was honored posthumously March 1 with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, the 2,491st star in the category of motion pictures.

Fittingly, his star was placed next to that of Taylor’s. In 1963, Burton played Mark Antony in Cleopatra — the most expensive movie ever made at the time — acting opposite Taylor. The two fell in love on set, and married a year later. The two divorced in 1974, but would remarry for less than a year in late 1975.

A star on the Walk of Fame is no Oscar (Burton was nominated seven times without a win), but family and friends were pleased to see Burton honored nonetheless.

“Standing here today, finally placing Richard’s star next to Elizabeth [Taylor’s] is a moment of great, great pride,” actor Michael Sheen (Kingdom of Heaven) said during the March 1 ceremony.

The posthumous honor coincides with the 50th anniversary of Cleopatra, which is coming out on Blu-ray Disc for the first time May 21 from 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment.

“What makes this day even more special is that St. David, the patron saint of  Wales is also celebrated on the very date of Mr. Burton’s star ceremony,” said Leron Gubler, president and CEO of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce.

Burton, a Welshman, passed on the pride in his heritage to his family, with daughter, Kate opening the Richard Burton Theatre at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, in Cardiff, Wales in 2011.

“It’s a fitting statement … for him to be placed here,” said Lord David Rowe-Beddoe, president of the Royal Welsh College. 

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