Kathleen Turner may have played a few of Elizabeth Taylor‘s famous roles, but she’s no fan of the legendary actress.
Turner looks back on her career and a time she took on one of Taylor’s most iconic roles in a new interview with Vulture, where she gave very specific criticism of the late actress.
“For a while I felt like half my life was making her wrongs right,” Turner said. “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof — you ever listen to her voice? It’s awful. She has a bad voice, badly used. In any case, people are after me all the time to do Sweet Bird of Youth, and I’m like, ‘Enough Taylor s—.’ I don’t think she was very skilled.”
Turner was nominated for a Tony Award for her stage performance as Maggie in Tennessee Williams’ Cat on a Hot Tin Roof in 1990, a role Taylor played in the 1958 film adaptation.
She also later took on the role of Martha in a Broadway adaptation of Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf? in 2005, almost 40 years after Taylor won an Oscar for her performance as Martha in the 1966 film. The film was based on the 1962 play by Edward Albee about the lives of a middle-aged couple and their younger visitors.
“Edward Albee disliked the film intensely. In the play, when George comes in he pours himself a drink and then nurses that drink the whole evening,” Turner said. “The film got that completely wrong. Taylor and Richard Burton are drunk and screaming at each other the whole time. I heard somebody once say [about the film], ‘I get this at home. Why would I go see it?’ But I was lucky that I got to do the play myself and show the humor in it for God’s sake.”
Taylor died of congestive heart failure at 79 in 2011.