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Lindsay Lohan appears as Elizabeth Taylor and Grant Bowler as Richard Burton in a scene from the 2012 Lifetime Television film Liz and Dick. - Provided courtesy of Lifetime

'Liz & Dick' movie draws 3.5M viewers, Lady Gaga defends Lindsay Lohan

Get more: Lindsay Lohan, TV
11/26/2012 by Corinne Heller

The premiere of "Liz & Dick," Lifetime Television's movie starring Lindsey Lohan as Elizabeth Taylor and Grant Bowler as her lover Richard Burton, was watched by about 3.5 million people but spurred mostly negative reactions from viewers, including celebrities.

However, one particular pop superstar, who has more than 31.5 million Twitter followers, offered the 26-year-old actress some words of encouragement.

"@lindsaylohan you did a beautiful job on Liz & Dick, Let no one bring u down, Liz didnt, they always try to knock the greats down a few pegs," Lady Gaga Tweeted on Monday.

The 3.5 million viewers who tuned into to watch Sunday's premiere included about 1.3 million adults between the ages of 18 and 49. About 1.1 million people in that group were women - the network's target demographic. The movie earned a total rating of 2.8 among U.S. households, Lifetime Television said in a statement, adding that "Liz & Dick" was the fourth most-watched original movie premiere on ad-supported cable.

In comparison, the ratings for last month's premiere of Lifetime's reboot of "Steel Magnolias" drew 6.5 million viewers and a 4.9 rating.

Lohan has said she can personally relate to Taylor, the Oscar-winning "Cleopatra" and "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" actress and Hollywood icon who died at age 79 in 2011. The younger star, still praised for her performance in the 2004 cult film "Mean Girls," has trying to make an acting comeback following years of legal and personal turmoil that has landed her in jail six times.

But many felt that "Liz & Dick," which showed the turbulent, passionate and booze-filled love affair between Taylor and Bowler, her second and third husband, was simply not it.

Time magazine writer James Poniewozik began his review of "Liz & Dick," posted two days before it aired, with these words: "You likely opened this review expecting me to call 'Liz amp; Dick' the worst TV movie of the year. I cannot do that. There are SyFy Saturday-night movies I haven't watched, and cable public-access productions, and industrial-safety videos. But 'Liz & Dick' is possibly the worst TV movie of the year, and therefore probably the most successful."

"They r doing a marvelous job of making one of the greatest actresses of all time out to be one of the worst people of all time. #LizandDick," "Hairspray" and "Rock of Ages" director Adam Shankman Tweeted.

"Drinking Game!!! Everytime he says Elizabeth: SHOT! I was hammered after 1st act!!" Shankman said earlier. "He just said Elizabeth 7 times in one scene...! I'm in trouble!! #LizandDick"

Comedian and actor Patton Oswalt live Tweeted the movie as well, at one point saying: :Somebody give @GrantBowler a good role in something good. He's a solid actor. ATLAS SHRUGGED and now this? #karma #lizanddick."

Lifetime Television's Facebook page shows a slew of mostly negative comments from users about "Liz & Dick."

"HORRIBLE! I called my 90 year old Mother to make sure she didn't miss it because I thought she'd enjoy it. I am so sorry I talked her into staying awake to see this! I'll have to call and apologize to her tomorrow....." one person wrote.

However, several viewers seemed to enjoy the movie.

"I thought Lindsay did a great job and she looked a lot like the young liz," one person said, while another posted: "I watched, and enjoyed this movie. Some say they didn't like it. To each his own."

"Liz & Dick" airs again on Lifetime on Monday, November 26 at 8 p.m. ET.

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