During the production of Cleopatra, Richard Burton had a torrid affair with co-star (and future wife) Elizabeth Taylor. One day at the height of the scandal, Burton received a cable from Sir Laurence Olivier: "Make up your mind, dear heart," it read. "Do you want to be a great actor or a household word?" Burton's reply? "Both."
["I rather like my reputation, actually," Burton once declared. "That of a spoiled genius from the Welsh gutter, a drunk, a womanizer; it's rather an attractive image."]