'Liz & Dick' ratings a little soft

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Who’s afraid of Liz & Dick‘s ratings?

Lifetime’s critically trashed Elizabeth Taylor biopic starring Lindsay Lohan delivered 3.5 million viewers Sunday night.

The network points out Liz & Dick ranks as its fourth highest-rated original TV movie of 2012 — which is sort of a weak brag, considering all the advance hype. Liz & Dick delivered fewer viewers than Lifetime movies such as Steel MagnoliasDrew Peterson: Untouchable and Abducted: The Carlina White Story.

The film chronicles Elizabeth Taylor’s romance with Richard Burton from 1961 to 1984 and received hostile reviews, with critics bashing the stunt casting of Lohan as the silver screen legend. “No effort seems to have gone into Lohan’s preparation other than tinting her eyes Liz-violet,” marveled EW’s Ken Tucker.

It’s tough to say whether the negative reviews hurt or helped the film’s ratings since Lifetime’s original movie brand has long been about guilty pleasure titles, and surely many viewers tuned in precisely because they had to see what all the fuss was about.

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