'Liz & Dick' producer talks the risky business of hiring Lindsay Lohan

// World | 'Liz & Dick' producer talks the risky business of hiring Lindsay Lohan
Email to a friend Plain text Print version // Font size: Decrease font Enlarge font
Lindsay Lohan and Grant Bowler star as Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton in
Lindsay Lohan and Grant Bowler star as Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton in "Liz & Dick."
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Larry Thompson says Lohan brought with her a younger demographic and risk
  • He says Liz and Dick "were the first Brangelina"
  • Thompson will next work on an Oprah Winfrey biopic

(EW.com) -- On Sunday, Lifetime premieres "Liz & Dick," its Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton biopic starring Lindsay Lohan and Grant Bowler. Exec producer Larry Thompson openly admits Lohan brought with her a younger demographic (and headlines) but also risk.

He first met with Lohan about the project last December but cameras didn't roll until June. "When we first met with her, she had two probations, and when we finally closed the deal with her, there was only one probation," Thompson says. "If we couldn't have gotten insurance, there would have been no movie. We wound up having to go to Lloyd's of London to get what we called incarceration insurance.... We had to protect ourselves that if she were to have violated her probation during production, we wouldn't have had to close down and lose our movie."

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: How did you approach Grant Bowler after having cast Lindsay?

LARRY THOMPSON: It wasn't until I had Grant that I slept. It wasn't until I saw Grant Bowler and Lindsay meet in that room and I saw the chemistry that I knew I could make Liz and Dick live again.

EW: Was it difficult to cast someone opposite Lindsay knowing he might have concerns?

EW Daily Poll: What will you do on Black Friday?

Thompson: It was. I looked at every actor from Wales there was. I looked at every actor from the U.K. there was. And I wound up hiring a guy from New Zealand to play the most famous Welsh actor of all time. So it's the magic of Hollywood. I think Grant Bowler is just fantastic in the movie.

EW: You were on the set every day. Is there a moment in the movie when you think Lohan most related to Taylor?

Thompson: It was in the ethereal soundstage in black that she most related to Elizabeth Taylor. It was when they're speaking to camera and breaking the fourth wall. Liz and Dick were the first Brangelina, the most famous hunted couple in the world, the first paparazzi couple that's given birth to the celebrity-crazed world that we now live in. That's what fame's about. Fame is the accumulation of all the good, bad, true, untrue, flattering, and non-flattering things said and written about someone when you become iconic.

We respect Liz and Dick so much that we wanted to give them the last word, meaning that fourth-wall interview of them speaking to camera [throughout the film] is the two of them speaking from the grave. We decided to dress them in the ultimate thespian outfit. They're sitting in a director's chair, in all black. It's almost like Hollywood heaven. And what they're saying is, "Listen, we were this, we were that. The paparazzi said this, the paparazzi said that. All these things written about us — let us tell you what they said about us, what was really going on, and how we really felt about each other." That device, which was my homage to Elizabeth and Richard, has allowed them the last word on themselves as icons and on what the media and the celebrity-crazed world can do with a couple. Maybe if we hadn't had all this attention paid to us, we could have kept it together, but there were too many balls we were trying to keep in the air. That's what Elizabeth's saying. That's what makes it tragic.

Liz Taylor 'love nest' trailer trashed during filming

EW: Is there a scene in the movie that you're sure people will assume is totally made up that you want to assure them isn't?

Thompson: I believe that the scene in which Eddie Fisher comes home to that party, and Richard in front of everybody forces her to confess her love for him in front of Eddie, seems so outrageous, but it is so absolutely true, having been reported many, many times over the years as happening just like that. As is every scene in the movie, by the way. The fact that they were denounced by the Pope, that's pretty strong. It's one thing to get a DUI, it's another thing for the Pope to denounce you... I know that when I was a kid, I used to go to the movies and when I would watch a true story about someone who was famous, I believed that to be THE movie. People who make movies have to understand the responsibility you have when you make a biopic. You have to be accurate. It takes a lot of effort and painstaking details to make these movies right, down to the wigs that take place over four decades, even after they're dead. [Laughs] That's hard.

EW: Now that you have worked with Lindsay, are you hoping other producers give her a chance?

Thompson: I want the best for Lindsay Lohan and anybody who ever hires her. But they have to know that making a movie with Lindsay Lohan is like jumping out of an airplane at 10,000 feet with a bolt of white nylon, a string, and a sewing machine. You're building a parachute as fast as you can.

Lohan: Keep me on set, it's safer that way

EW: Your next planned biopic is on Oprah Winfrey.

Thompson: I've optioned Kitty Kelley's book [Oprah: A Biography]. We have a fantastic take on her life, and we're talking to networks now, as we speak, and we're interviewing writers right now, too. I am from Mississippi, as is Oprah Winfrey, and I believe that her start on a rural country road in Mississippi to the world stage that she lives is a journey that is nothing less than miraculous. I think it will be the most fascinating biopic I've ever done. I've made the Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz movie [Lucy & Desi: Before the Laughter]. I've made the Sonny and Cher movie [And the Beat Goes On: The Sonny and Cher Story]. I've made the Duke and Duchess of Windsor movie [The Woman He Loved]. And now I've done Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. I think the only thing I could follow all those up with would be Oprah.

See original story at EW.com.

CLICK HERE to Try 2 RISK FREE issues of Entertainment Weekly

© 2011 Entertainment Weekly and Time Inc. All rights reserved.

0
Comments »
  • Print
  • Email
  • More sharing
Tagged : No tags for this article

Headlines Newsview all

President Buhari Begs Niger Delta Militants : Please Stop Pipeline Bombings, I Plead In The Name Of God Almighty

President Muhammadu Buhari yesterday pleaded with Niger Delta militants to soft pedal on the bombing and destruction of oil and gas installations.  He asked those close ...

Revealed: America Has Solid Evidence Of S3x Scandal Against Nigerian Lawmakers

U.S. officials have “solid evidence” of the alleged misconduct Ambassador James Entwistle reported to House of Representatives Speaker, Yakubu Dogara, high-level diplomatic sources say. In a ... Full story

Buhari Fiddles While Nigeria Is On Fire

Nero Claudius Drasus Germaniscus was the 5th Emperor of the Roman Empire between 54- 68AD. His ascension to the throne in 54AD was received with ... Full story

Coup Reports: Buratai Summons Top Commanders

The Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, on Friday summoned top commanders of the service to the Army headquarters for an emergency security ... Full story

How Nigerians Spend N1.4bn Daily On Sports Betting

Casinos and endless entertainment are primarily what Las Vegas in the US is known for. But back home in Nigeria, those involved in casino and sports ...

Buhari?s Certificate Saga: Media Trials And What Goes Round

President Muhammadu Buhari’s certificate saga is getting messier by the day. Although a majority of his supporters who are now blaming themselves for imposing this ... Full story

EFCC, Please, Reflect On Justice Kolawole?s Upbraiding

Justice Gabriel Kolawole of the Federal High Court, Abuja copiously presented the position of Nigerians bothered about the consistent abuse of the rule of law ... Full story

Declaration:Read Reasons Why Every Youth In Igboland Will Soon Join Avengers Says IPOB

– IPOB has insisted that it supports the activities of the Niger Delta Avengers – It warned that if the government carries out any attack, youths ...

Biafra Massacre: Victims? Blood Cries For Justice

President Muhammadu Buhari has been urged not to sweep under the carpet last month alleged gruesome killings of unarmed pro-Biafra agitators in Anambra, Imo, Enugu, ...

Breaking News: Militants Kill 30 People In Lagos

Confirmed news from Ikorodu,Lagos have it that suspected pipeline vandals,militants invade Igbo Olomu and Ishawo Community. Another source confirmed that about 30 people have been ...

Fogery Scandal: AGF Snups Senate Invitation

The Minister of Justice and Attorney General of the Federation (AGF), Abubakar Malami (SAN) has replied to the claim by the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, ... Full story

Comment on: 'Liz & Dick' producer talks the risky business of hiring Lindsay Lohan

Rate this article

0

Breaking News

Policeman Allegedly Assaults Popular Nollywood Actress In Lagos (Photos)

The actress and TV presenter took to Instagram to narrate the unfortunate incident and to show proof of her injury sustained in the ugly encounter: "On ... Full story

Video: Xherdan Shaqiri Scores Fantastic Bicycle Kick

Xherdan Shaqiri  of Switzerland scored arguably the best goal of the 2016 EURO's after his fantastic bicycle kick goal drew Switzerland level with Poland ...

Euro 2016 Match Preview: Wales vs Northern Ireland

The eagerly-anticipated clash between Wales and Northern Ireland is the first time two home nations have met in the knockout stages of a major tournament. It ...

Arsenal?s Alex Iwobi One Of Five British Based Players Called Up By Nigeria For The Olympic Games

Arsenal may have to do without Alex Iwobi for the start of the new Premier League season after the midfielder was included in the provisional ...

Why Tiwa Savage Is Nigeria?s Biggest Female Musician, Despite The Odds

– Tiwa Savage, the entertainer whose career is perfectly modelled on resilience, talent and media savviness – The Nigerian pop star is currently arguably Africa’s biggest female ...

Watch How Malin And Terry Have S3x In Front Of Housemates In Love Island Show

ITV dating show, Love Island left viewers in shock as two housemates - Malin and Terry - slept with themselves openly in front of fellow housemates ...

Wow! See How 'The Rock' Dwayne Johnson Showed Love To Nollywood Actress, Stella Damasus

Nollywood actress, Stella Damasus blushed like a newly crowned princess after famous celebrity and former wrestler Dwayne Johnson showed some love on her by replying ... Full story

West Ham Make A Sensa Batshuayi Bid

West Ham have made a €35m bid for Marseille striker Michy Batshuayi, according to reports. The Hammers' offer was worth around £28.25m at 9am on Friday ...

SO SEXY: Paul Okoye's Female Music Act Exposes Flat Tummy During Interview

Paul Okoye's signing, Lucy, continued her radio tour after her new banging song which featured reggae artiste, Cynthia Morgan. The singer was recently at Rhythm FM, ... Full story

Newly Born Again Actress, Patience Ozokwor Spotted Ministering At A Church In Lagos

Popular veteran actress, Patience Ozokwor, who recently turned a born-again christain, has been pictured recently ministering to a congregation at an Anglican Church in the ... Full story