Trailers from Hell: Dan Ireland on ‘Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?,’ Starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton with Gloves Off

Trailers from Hell: Dan Ireland on 'Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?,' Starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton with Gloves Off

Who’s Afraid of Richard Pryor’s Sneakers! kicks off at Trailers from Hell, with filmmaker Dan Ireland introducing Elizabeth Taylor-Richard Burton classic “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?”

Writer-director Mike Nichols, then
known for broadway comedies and his satirical work with Elaine May, surprised
everyone by choosing Edward Albee’s incendiary psychodrama Who’s Afraid of
Virginia Woolf as his motion picture debut. Filmed on the campus of Smith
College in Massachusetts, it’s a cinematic one-two punch thanks to the
gloves-off performances of Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor (who bulked-up
to a fighting weight of 155 lbs). Taylor snagged an Oscar (along with co-star
Sandy Dennis and cinematographer Haskell Wexler). Albee had wanted James Mason
and Bette Davis for the leads (in 1980 Nichols and May themselves starred in a
New Haven revival).

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