To say Marilyn Monroe is to say cinema, movies, the seventh art… Her image, rather her images, are part of the collective imagination. Keeping her flowing white dress on the subway grate in ‘Temptation lives upstairs’, assuring that diamonds are the best friend of a woman decked out in pink in ‘Gentlemen Prefer Blondes’, or carrying the ukulele in ‘With skirts already the crazy’. As in the latter, it was seen among the best films of Billy Wilder, and some of his works are among the best classic films in the history of cinema. To this day, the iconic and incomparable legacy of the star that he was has come down to us. Nevertheless, behind the lights there is a lot of turbidity around his life. Much has come to light but much remains to be clarified from his biography.
Young Norma Jeane Baker was born on June 1, 1926 And it had a rocky start. She is the daughter of a single mother (she never knew her father), she spent her childhood in and out of shelters as her mother was diagnosed with schizophrenia. She got married at the age of 16 and soon began her career as a model. From there she began her career in the cinema, where she found her place until she became a sex symbol in the 1950s: ‘Niagara’ or ‘Gentlemen prefer blondes’ enhanced that image of “dumb blonde”, when the actress really had an IQ of 165. However, a life dedicated to entertainment and a macho society favored the image of the former more than the latter.
Just like Michelle Williams did 11 years ago in ‘My Week with Marilyn’, Ana de Armas is now the actress in charge of bringing her to life in the movie ‘Blonde’, based on the novel by Joyce Carol Oates (which is based on reality, despite not being true). The tape, one of the best Netflix movies of 2022, It is directed by Andrew Dominik and was screened at the Venice Film Festival, as well as being the surprise film at the San Sebastian Festival. In both appointments, De Armas has been highly praised for her interpretation of the great erotic myth of cinema. For almost three hours, the director strips away the image of a Hollywood star to show us a woman who suffered and had nothing but tears and bad luck in her life, the one that ended at the age of 36, and to whom she still loves surrounds an important halo of mystery.
Here we review the life of the actress step by step, through several images that tell her storyfrom her birth as Norma Jean Mortenson (shortly later, Baker) to her death, at the height of her career.
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He was born on June 1, 1926 in Los Angeles. In the photo she is seen as a child at 3 years old.
The actress’s first marriage lasted from 1942 to 1946, it was with James Dougherty. She was 16 years old.
She began her career as a model. At that time she left images like this one of a pin-up girl.
First job with a piece of paper in ¡Dangerous Years’ (1947), by Arthur Pierson.
First major film: ‘The Asphalt Jungle’ (1950), directed by John Huston. Along with the actress were Sterling Hayden, Louis Calhern or Sam Jaffe among others.
With Jane Russell on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in June 1953.
The image of the actress clad in a very tight swimsuit has returned to popularity thanks to ‘Blonde’, where Ana de Armas rescues the scene.
Second marriage (January to October 1954): athlete Joe DiMaggio.
Singing for US troops stationed in Korea in 1954.
Despite the image that has remained of her as a silly girl, she liked to read a lot. Here in the photo she is seen reading the March 1955 book ‘To the Actor: On the Technique of Acting’ by Michael Chekhov.
Recreating an iconic scene
In the filming of ‘The temptation lives upstairs’, filming one of the most emblematic images of the actress and of cinema.
Third marriage, playwright Arthur Miller. He was with him from 1956 to 1961.
With Vivien Leigh and Laurence Olivier, in London, in 1956, to shoot ‘The Prince and the Showgirl’, by Olivier.
With Jack Lemmon on the set of ‘Some Like It Hot’ (1959), by Billy Wilder.
Tony Curtis, co-star in ‘Some Like It Hot’, claimed to be the father of the child she lost. Throughout her life, the actress had several abortions.
He won a Golden Globe for Wilder’s film. Here, with Rock Hudson at the 1962 gala, where he took home a Henrietta Award.
Iconic and historic moment
Singing ‘Happy Birthday’ for John Fitzgerald Kennedy in May 1962.
With Dean Martin in ‘Something’s Got to Give,’ the film Monroe didn’t finish, in 1962.
Cover with the news of his death
August 5, 1962: Marilyn Monroe is found dead on her bed.
Rest in the Westwood Village Memorial Park in Los Angeles.
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