It is the most expensive film ever made, and a huge box office flop.
But Cleopatra was the setting for Elizabeth Taylor to fall in love with Richard Burton, a happening christened 'le scandale' after the adulterous pair became the first ever tabloid sensation.
Turmoil: Lindsay Lohan manages to capture Liz Taylor's expression as her life fell apart on the set of Cleopatra eerily here
Pensive: Liz was born to play the Egyptian queen but the casting changed her life forever as she fell for Burton
The juggernaut of attraction between Taylor and Burton amidst the over-spending and bickering on set destroyed the facade of old Hollywood and ushered in the era of access all areas celebrity gossip that we have today.
Lindsay Lohan knows quite a bit about that, of course, and aptly enough, she's playing her icon in forthcoming Lifetime movie, Liz & Dick, which tells the couple's story.
And it's in the recreated Cleopatra scene, a time that was the most chaotic in Liz's life, that Lindsay looks most like the fabled raven beauty.
The haunted look on her face captures the inner turmoil of the indigo-eyed goddess as her life fell apart and the rollercoaster ride with the love of her life began.
Recreation: Lindsay is Elizabeth on her wedding day to Richard Burton, played by Grant Bowler
Star crossed lovers: The real Liz & Dick on their wedding day
After falling for Burton, Taylor was denounced in the senate and criticised by the Vatican for 'erotic vagrancy,' which makes criticism of Lohan look like a series of gentle tuts in comparison.
And unbelievable as it may seem, the debacle surrounding the bungled historical epic prompted many observers to declare Taylor's career dead in the water in the early '60s.
This was despite Cleopatra being the highest grossing film of 1963; as its gargantuan cost of $44 million meant the $26 million yield failed to even cover costs.
The four-hour film employed two directors, two separate casts, and needed two and a half years of on-and-off filming in England, Italy, Egypt, and Spain; it nearly destroyed Twentieth Century Fox.
But its place in legend was assured by a starring role in the epic love story.
What becomes of the broken hearted: Lindsay as a devastated Liz after Burton's funeral
The film cultivated Taylor's 'difficult' reputation as there were whispers of a diva-like attitude, myriad costume changes and of course, that on-set attraction.
So it's appropriate that she should be played in the film by the 26-year-old, who has been as beset by controversy during filming as any other time in her tumultuous short life.
After Liz and Dick left their husband and wife to be together, they married twice and made the classic Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? as well as some awful duds.
But despite being engulfed by scandal and enjoying a booze-sodden see-saw romance with the roaring Welshman, Taylor remained a prosperous A list star until her death.
Could this have a prescience for Lindsay?
This film will tell us so, for if she charms us - or even proves interesting - on screen, it's likely the fascination with this wild child, Taylor's heir in so many ways, will continue.
The film will air on the cable channel this autumn.
Did Lindsay Lohan trash Elizabeth Taylor's Cleopatra love nest? Actress and film company in firing line over wrecked trailer
Makers of Liz & Dick and the film's star Lindsay Lohan have been accused of trashing the dressing room trailer where Elizabeth Taylor's romance with Richard Burton started.
The 'love nest' was apparently wrecked while it was on loan to Silver Screen Pictures, with photos showing cigarette burns on fabric, furniture and even a portrait of Taylor. Dishes, mirror and glass were broken.
Angel Alger bought the lavishly decorated 38-foot travel trailer for $50,000 using her life savings in June.
Wrecked: Lindsay Lohan and Silver Screen Pictures are in the firing line after being accused of trashing the trailer Elizabeth Taylor used while filming Cleopatra
Tarnished: The trailer was put on loan to the production company earlier in the summer by owner Angel Alger
Icon: Taylor as Cleopatra in 1963 and, right, Lohan in character as Liz during filming for Liz & Dick this summer
But a month later, after loaning it to the production company for the Lifetime TV movie, Alger says she discovered it had been ruined - and that items were missing.
'I was specifically told that it would come back in pristine condition and in even better condition than it was at that time,' Alger told CNN.
The look of love: Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton in the 1963 film Cleopatra
Mess: Glasses are seen toppled over with a stubbed out cigarette on the table
Before and after: A lavish French phone, seen left just after Alger purchased the trailer and, right, after being on loan
She estimated the damage is in the region of at least $100,000 - and claims an antique European rocking chair that Taylor sat in after filming was taken.
'I did not get to enjoy using the lavish French phone that she used or even her personal hair brush that probably still had some of her hair in it,' she went on.
Display: Alger is hoping to repair the damage so she can put the trailer on display
In a state: A picture of Taylor was also ruined and discarded on the floor
Bull in a china shop: Crockery was also shown smashed
Broken bone: Some delicate rose floral china was left in pieces
Furthermore, Alger has pointed the finger at Lindsay Lohan - based on studio employee's comment to her that the actress and her friends had access to it each night after filming.
Alger said: 'Only a psychotic and rebellious person or people would steal irreplaceable museum belongings and leave it in this vandalised condition.'
However, she says she has no evidence to prove it was Lohan.
Disarray: The once-pristine trailer is shown with the contents knocked over and strewn about the floor and surfaces
Smoke and mirrors: vintage glasses were toppled and cigarette butts carelessly stubbed out on a table
Her spokesman Steve Honig denied Lindsay had anything to do with it: 'This has nothing to do with Lindsay,' he told CNN. 'You should ask the producers about it.'
Liz & Dick executive producer Larry Thompson did not return phone calls to CNN when contacted yesterday. His assistant said he was busy editing the movie.
An insurance representative from the studio met with Alger to tour the trashed trailer in early August, but she claims the matter is still not resolved.
Not so pretty in pink: The trailer's contents are seen strewn across the floor following its use by the film company
Wreck and ruin: The state the trailer was left in, was a far cry from its original pristine condition
Upset: Alger had some cleaning up to do when the trailer was returned
Back in 1963 Fox Studios spent $75,000 (which is worth around $500,000 today) to create a suite fit for the queen Taylor was playing in Cleopatra.
She took filming breaks in the trailer with co-star Burton, set between roman columns with walls and ceilings handpainted in the style of Cleopatra's era.
Liz & Dick is set to air on the Lifetime channel on November 3.
Furious: Owner Angel Alger, seen in the trailer just after buying it for $50,000 in June
As it was: Alger shared some photographs of the trailer in pristine condition before it was lent to Lohan and the film company
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