Illa Conti

Written by Illa Conti

Modified & Updated: 28 May 2024

Jessica Corbett

Reviewed by Jessica Corbett


Butterfield 8, directed by Daniel Mann and starring the legendary Elizabeth Taylor, is a classic film that has captivated audiences for decades. Released in 1960, this American drama film tells the compelling story of Gloria Wandrous, a beautiful and enigmatic woman caught up in the throes of a complex love affair.

With its gripping plot, exceptional performances, and iconic moments, Butterfield 8 has become a staple in the world of cinema. In this article, we will delve into the fascinating world of Butterfield 8 by uncovering 47 facts about the movie that many fans may not be aware of.

Key Takeaways:

  • Elizabeth Taylor’s iconic performance in “Butterfield 8” as Gloria Wandrous challenged societal norms and continues to captivate audiences with its timeless exploration of love, lust, and redemption.
  • The film’s powerful storytelling, captivating plot, and exploration of complex characters make “Butterfield 8” a must-watch for cinema enthusiasts, showcasing Elizabeth Taylor’s talent and influence on future films.
Table of Contents

Recognized as a classic

Butterfield 8, released in 1960, is widely regarded as a classic film of its time.

Based on a novel

The movie is based on the 1935 novel of the same name by John O’Hara.

Acclaimed performances

Elizabeth Taylor gave a powerful and unforgettable performance in the lead role, for which she won an Academy Award.

A story of self-discovery

Butterfield 8 explores themes of moral ambiguity, redemption, and self-discovery.

A captivating plot

The movie follows the turbulent life of Gloria Wandrous, a call girl living in New York City.

Elizabeth Taylor’s iconic role

Elizabeth Taylor’s portrayal of Gloria Wandrous is considered one of her most memorable performances.

A star-studded cast

Aside from Elizabeth Taylor, the film features performances by Laurence Harvey and Eddie Fisher.

Controversial subject matter

Butterfield 8 tackles sensitive topics such as promiscuity and the consequences of one’s actions.

Critical and commercial success

The film was a box office hit and received positive reviews from critics.

A powerful portrayal of female empowerment

Gloria Wandrous depicts a character who defies societal norms and fights for her own independence.

Academy Award nominations

Butterfield 8 received various Academy Award nominations, including Best Actress and Best Supporting Actor.

Memorable dialogue

The movie features several memorable lines that have become iconic in cinema history.

Reflection of the era

Butterfield 8 provides a glimpse into the cultural and social landscape of the 1960s.

Elizabeth Taylor’s fashion influence

The glamorous wardrobe of Elizabeth Taylor in the film set new fashion trends.

A timeless classic

Even after decades, Butterfield 8 continues to captivate audiences with its compelling story.

Recognition at the Golden Globe Awards

The film received several nominations and won the Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture – Drama.

The impact of scandalous affairs

Butterfield 8 explores the consequences of infidelity and the complexities of romantic relationships.

Beautifully crafted cinematography

The film’s visual aesthetics contribute to its artistic appeal, with stunningly shot scenes.

Themes of redemption and second chances

Gloria Wandrous’s journey highlights the possibility of redemption despite past mistakes.

The influence on future films

Butterfield 8 paved the way for other films to explore complex and morally gray characters.

Elizabeth Taylor’s Academy Award win

Elizabeth Taylor won the Academy Award for Best Actress for her performance in Butterfield 8.

A realistic portrayal of New York City

The film showcases the vibrant and gritty atmosphere of New York City in the 1960s.

Powerful storytelling

Butterfield 8 weaves a gripping narrative that keeps audiences engaged from start to finish.

Iconic film score

The movie’s score, composed by Bronislau Kaper, adds depth to its emotional impact.

Exploration of societal expectations

The film delves into the pressures and expectations placed on individuals by society.

Emotional depth and complexity

Butterfield 8 delves into the complexities of human emotions and the choices we make.

The portrayal of female sexuality

Gloria Wandrous challenged societal norms by embracing her own sexuality and desires.

Impact on the film industry

Butterfield 8 had a profound influence on subsequent films, shaping the way complex female characters were portrayed.

Elizabeth Taylor’s commitment

Elizabeth Taylor’s dedication to her role in Butterfield 8 earned her high praise from critics and audiences alike.

Exploration of personal growth

Gloria Wandrous’s journey in the film highlights the importance of self-reflection and personal development.

Tragic and compelling storyline

Butterfield 8 explores the consequences of a life filled with self-destructive behavior.

A character-driven narrative

The film focuses on the complexities and internal struggles of its characters.

Elizabeth Taylor’s captivating presence

Elizabeth Taylor’s magnetic performance brings the character of Gloria Wandrous to life on screen.

Exploration of societal double standards

Butterfield 8 challenges the traditional gender roles and double standards prevalent in society.

Memorable supporting performances

Laurence Harvey and Eddie Fisher deliver impressive performances that complement Taylor’s lead role.

A thought-provoking examination of morality

The film raises questions about the nature of morality and the complexities of human behavior.

Impactful character development

Gloria Wandrous undergoes a transformation throughout the film, leading to a deeper understanding of her character.

Cultural significance

Butterfield 8 reflects the changing attitudes towards sexuality and relationships in the 1960s.

Elizabeth Taylor’s iconic performance immortalized on screen

Elizabeth Taylor’s portrayal of Gloria Wandrous has become synonymous with the film’s legacy.

Exploration of the consequences of one’s actions

Butterfield 8 examines the ripple effects and ramifications of choices made by its characters.

The film’s enduring popularity

Butterfield 8 continues to be celebrated and appreciated by cinephiles around the world.

A reflection of the human condition

The movie delves into the universal themes of love, loss, and redemption.

Elizabeth Taylor’s on-screen chemistry

Taylor’s electric chemistry with her co-stars adds depth and authenticity to the film.

A visual treat

Butterfield 8 boasts visually stunning cinematography that enhances the storytelling experience.

A timeless exploration of love and lust

The film delves into the complexities of desire, intimacy, and the pursuit of happiness.

A showcase of Elizabeth Taylor’s talent

Butterfield 8 solidified Elizabeth Taylor’s status as one of the finest actresses of her generation.

A must-watch for cinema enthusiasts

Butterfield 8 remains an essential part of film history and should be on every movie lover’s watchlist.


In conclusion, Butterfield 8 is a must-watch movie for any lover of classic cinema. With its captivating storyline, stellar performances, and timeless themes, it cements itself as a true cinematic gem. Elizabeth Taylor’s Oscar-winning performance is a testament to her acting prowess, showcasing her range and depth as an actress. The film’s exploration of topics like love, loss, and redemption resonates with audiences even today.

Butterfield 8 stands as a testament to the golden era of Hollywood, delivering a gripping narrative that keeps viewers engrossed from start to finish. Its iconic performances, stunning cinematography, and memorable soundtrack make it a must-see for fans of film history. Whether you’re interested in classic cinema or simply looking for an enthralling movie experience, Butterfield 8 is sure to leave a lasting impression.


Q: Is Butterfield 8 based on a true story?

A: No, Butterfield 8 is not based on a true story. It is a fictional film adaptation of the novel of the same name written by John O’Hara.

Q: Who stars in Butterfield 8?

A: Elizabeth Taylor stars in the lead role of Gloria Wandrous, delivering a stunning performance that earned her an Academy Award for Best Actress.

Q: When was Butterfield 8 released?

A: Butterfield 8 was released in 1960.

Q: What is the plot of Butterfield 8?

A: The film follows the story of Gloria Wandrous, a troubled woman who navigates the intricate world of relationships, love, and self-discovery in New York City.

Q: How was Butterfield 8 received by critics?

A: Despite mixed reviews upon release, Butterfield 8 garnered widespread acclaim for Elizabeth Taylor’s performance, earning her an Academy Award for her portrayal of Gloria Wandrous.

Q: Is Butterfield 8 available to stream online?

A: Availability may vary depending on your streaming platforms or subscriptions. However, it can usually be found on popular streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime, or Hulu, or can be rented or purchased from online platforms such as iTunes or Google Play.

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