Snapshot: 24 Photos of Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor’s Romance

Richard Burton (Dominic West) says to ex-wife Dame Elizabeth Taylor (Helena Bonham Carter) in the film Burton and Taylor, “We’re addicts Elizabeth, you and I.” She coyly responds, “Love is not a drug.”

However you want to interpret this line, the two couldn’t stay away from each other, tackling 12 films together, diving head first into two consecutive marriages, resulting in two divorces and still drawn to each other after all of that, taking on one last project.

The made-for-TV film, premiering on BBC America on Wednesday, October 16 at 9/8c, puts a spotlight on the couples’ last performance together in the NYC stage presentation of Private Lives. Coincidentally, or not so coincidentally, the play portrays a divorced couple who have lingering feelings.

This snapshot of 24 photos walks you through their romantic entanglement:

February, 1962. (AP)

The two connect on the set of Cleopatra, 1962. (AP)

1963. (AP)

Burton courts Taylor with a flower at one of their many work functions, 1963. (AP)

1963. (AP)

The costars arrive in London after a promotional visit to Paris, 1963. (AP)

April, 1964. (AP)

The now newlyweds have a laugh with friend Sammy Davis Jr., April, 1964. (AP)

April, 1964. (AP)

The couple shine after an evening at Lunt Fontanne Theater, 1964. (AP)

June, 1964. (AP)

Burton sneaks a smooch backstage after attending a poetry reading, 1964. (AP)

December, 1964. (AP)

The couple enjoy a quiet moment before the holidays, December, 1964. (AP)

January, 1965. (AP)

Taylor shows off her playful side, January, 1965. (AP)

April, 1967. (AP)

The two share one vice, April, 1967. (AP)

August, 1968. (AP)

Burton walks to the hospital to meet Taylor after surgery, 1968. (AP)

August, 1968. (AP)

Burton holds Taylor’s hand as she leaves the hospital, 1968. (AP)

March, 1969. (AP)

Taylor has another health scare but Burton is by her side, March, 1969. (AP)

April, 1970. (AP)

Taylor bounces back, the two show off their matching tans in Beverly Hills, April, 1970. (AP)

August, 1971. (AP)

The couple stroll through Italy in matching outfits, 1971. (AP)

May, 1972. (AP)

They take a break on their yacht, May, 1972. (AP)

July, 1973. (AP)

Burton shields Taylor from the cameras, while facing divorce, July, 1973. (AP)

March, 1974. (AP)

The couple are officially divorced, but still spotted together holding hands, 1974. (AP)

August, 1975. (AP)

The couple announce a permanent reconciliation, 1975. (AP)

November, 1975. (AP)

Husband and wife (again) celebrate Burton’s 50th birthday, 1975. (AP)

No one would guess divorce was looming, just five months down the road, February, 1975. (AP)

No one would guess divorce was looming, just five months away, 1975. (AP)

After a five-year break, the two reunite at Taylor's 50th birthday, February, 1982. (AP)

After a five-year break, the two reunite at Taylor’s 50th birthday, 1982. (AP)

The two star opposite each other in Private Lives, playing a divorced couple who reunite, March, 1983. (AP)

The exes portray a divorced couple in Private Lives, 1983. (AP)

Burton passed away the following year on August 5, 1984. (AP)

Burton passed away the following year, he was laid to rest on August 9, 1984. (AP)

Taylor says her final goodbye at a memorial service held August 30, 1984. (AP)

Taylor says her final goodbye at a memorial service held August 30, 1984. (AP)

Do you think Burton and Taylor were on their way to a third marriage?