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HomeEntertainmentA Gay Icon: How Elizabeth Taylor Became Significant In The LGBTQ Community

A Gay Icon: How Elizabeth Taylor Became Significant In The LGBTQ Community

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Elizabeth Taylor’s eyes are only one of the striking features that drew a large Hollywood audience towards her. However, one other group drawn to Taylor were gay men. And this was not so much for her unforgettable eyes as her selfless support for the gay community.

It is safe to say that Elizabeth Taylor was one of the exceptional Hollywood belles who combined striking beauty with a staggering amount of talent in the industry. Taylor set the pace for outstanding acting, and her legacy remains untainted.

Besides the mystery behind Elizabeth Taylor’s eyes and tremendous effort in combating the stigma of AIDS, she held a special place in the hearts of gay men. Taylor was a staunch supporter of equality for the LGBTQ+ community while being a straight woman. Here’s a look through her legacy. 

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Elizabeth Taylor's eyes
Elizabeth Taylor. Image: Pinterest

Inside Elizabeth Taylor’s Relationship With Her Gay Friends

The “Cleopatra” icon had a nature that exuded empathy, and she channeled it into being an ally for her gay friends. Taylor did not stop there, she made sure to use her voice and other resources in maintaining the dignity of gay men. 

The Guardian’s 2011 article of Taylor’s approach as an LGBTQ+ ally noted that she was not drawn to her gay friends as a marketing strategy. Rather, she pulled her weight to help because of her innate and intuitive nature.

In so doing, Taylor redefined what it means to be a gay icon. Her affiliation and affection for the gay community was not something that started in the days of stardom, but it went as far back as her younger days.

There is speculation that her kind of friendship with gay men made her more comfortable in the company of men in general. She rooted for her gay friends and also championed activism in support of them.

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Back in 2000, during the Gay &Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) award, Taylor opened up about her close friendship with some of Hollywood’s iconic gay stars. She shared:

All of my life I’ve spent a lot of time with gay men – Montgomery Clift, Jimmy Dean, Rock Hudson – who were my colleagues, coworkers, confidantes, my closest friends, but I never thought of who they slept with! They were just the people I loved.”

Elizabeth Taylor’s Activism For The Gay Community 

The legendary movie star’s friendship was precious to her, and she kept her friends close to her heart. It was with this energy that she stood by her gay pals without wavering.

The “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” actress was also invested in fighting against the stigma on HIV/AIDS, and the prejudice meted on gay folks. For example, at the time when AIDS gradually became an epidemic, it was regarded as gay cancer and gay disease. 

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This prejudice made influential people turn their backs on gay people, further amplifying homophobia. Taylor fought back, clamping down on the social injustice while establishing that culture was present because of gay men.

She relayed in a talk with Interview Magazine in 2007: “If it weren’t for homosexuals there would be no culture, We can trace that back thousands of years. So many of the great musicians, the great painters were homosexual. Without their input it would be an entirely different, flat world.

The “A Place in the Sun” actress was one of the most famous women globally, and she generously used her platform to fight the social vices against the gay community. There were many other activists at the time, but Taylor’s good works exceptionally stood out.

Elizabeth Taylor's eyes
Image: Pinterest

Who Is Elizabeth Taylor?

Taylor was born a British-American to parents who were from America but lived in Britain. She spent most of her formative years in Europe before her family decided to move back to America.

Still, a young child, Taylor’s lovely features drew attention, and those who spotted her talent advised her parents to let her go into showbiz. At the time, she was not all new to the industry because her father was an art merchant, and her mom was an actress until marriage. 

The classic actress’ facial features were magical, and her eyes were the source. What color of eyes did Elizabeth Taylor have? The Oscar-winner bore a mesmerizing shade of violet eyes that shone with brilliance.

Image: Pinterest

And with it came a force of talent that went a long way through her childhood, coming-of-age, and adulthood career. She started acting at ten and was signed by Universal Pictures.

Taylor became known after she moved to MGM and starred in the production company’s “National Velvet.” Her career took off from there, and she starred in more career-boosting movies.

Some of her acting credits include “Butterfield 8,” the movie that ended her Oscar drought, “Suddenly Last Summer,” and “Cleopatra,” known to be one of the most expensive movies to have ever been produced. 

She was active in Hollywood until the late 2000s, when her health started to fail. Elizabeth Taylor’s children were right by her side in 2011 when she died of congestive heart failure. The 20th-century legend died at the age of 79. 

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