About the Production
Cleopatra was released on June 12, 1963. The film was nominated for nine and won four Academy Awards, including Best Art Direction by John DeCuir.
Despite being the highest grossing film of the year, Cleopatra left 20th Century-Fox in debt. Lead actress Elizabeth Taylor’s salary began at $1 million and eventually grew to $7 million. During production, Taylor became ill. Her ongoing recovery was the cause of the project's eventual termination. Before being released to theaters, Cleopatra was severely edited three times; from six hours to four, and then to three as to allow theaters to have more showings per day.