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MARILYN MONROE

 

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Autographed early  photo as Norma Jean

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ORIGINAL 8 X 10 PHOTO
Signed in white ink--NOT A COPY!!
SOLD

Original artwork -- pastel on paper in excellent condition
by the famed artist Erb Rainer

Marilyn Monroe
Original Oil Painting 1983
Please click to enlarge
Approx. 5 foot wide x 6 foot high
Original Oil on Canvas, 1983
by the famed artist Erb Rainer

Recent Auction House's have realized $8,200 to $11,000
for photo images inferior to this item.

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Signed 8" x 10" with Notarized Sworn Statement
SOLD

Marilyn Monroe??
The exemplar-example-sample above is the famed RED INK signature.  Many hundreds of "Red ink signed" photos were sent answering fan mail
sent to Marilyn in care of 20th Century Fox.
Is it a genuine Monroe or a Secretarial?

Can a Collector authenticate this early signature?
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Norma Jean Dougherty Autograph?

Marilyn Monroe & Sir Laurence Olivier

"The Prince & The Showgirl" 1957
Lobbycard #1

Marilyn Monroe & Sir Laurence Olivier
"The Prince & The Showgirl" 1957
Lobbycard #2

Marilyn Monroe & Sir Laurence Olivier
"The Prince & The Showgirl" 1957
Lobbycard #3

Marilyn Monroe & Sir Laurence Olivier
"The Prince & The Showgirl" 1957
Lobbycard #4

Pre-20th Century Fox, while at Columbia Pictures.
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Vintage 11" x 14" Original Photograph (Not a Copy!!!)

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"Gentlemen Prefer Blondes"
8 x 10  FOH 1953

Joe DiMaggio
A guaranteed signature of the great DiMaggio and Marilyn's Husband
Signed 8" x 10"

CLICK HERE to see Joe DiMaggio's belt buckle

Biography for
Marilyn Monroe



Height:  5' 5 1/2"
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Mini biography
Her mother was a film-cutter at RKO who, widowed and insane, abandoned her to sequence of foster homes. She was almost smothered to death at two, nearly raped at six. At nine the LA Orphans' Home paid her a nickel a month for kitchen work while taking back a penny every Sunday for church. At sixteen she worked in an aircraft plant and married a man she called Daddy; he went into the military, she modeled, they divorced in 1946. She owned 200 books (including Tolstoy, Whitman, Milton), listened to Beethoven records, studied acting at the Actors' lab in Hollywood, and took literature courses at UCLA downtown. 20th Century Fox gave her a contract but let it lapse a year later. In 1948 Columbia gave her a six-month contract, turned her over to coach Natasha Lytess and featured her in the B movie "Ladies of the Chorus" for which she sang two numbers. Joseph Mankiewicz saw her in a small part in Asphalt Jungle, The (1950) and put her in "All About Eve", because of which 20th Century re-signed her to a seven-year contract. Niagara (1953) and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953) launched her as a sex symbol superstar. When she went to a supper honoring her Seven Year Itch, The (1955) she arrived in a red chiffon gown borrowed from the studio (she had never owned a gown). The same year she married and divorced baseball great Dimaggio, Joe (their wedding night was spent in Paso Robles CA). After "Itch" she wanted serious acting to replace the sexpot image and went to New York's Actors Studio. She worked with director Lee Strasberg and also underwent psychoanalysis to learn more about herself. Critics praised her transformation in Bus Stop (1956) and the press was stunned by her marriage to playwright Arthur Miller. True to form, she had no veil to match her beige wedding dress so she dyed one in coffee; he wore one of the two suits he owned. They went to England that fall where she made "The Prince and the Showgirl" with Lawrence Olivier, fighting with him and falling further prey to alcohol and pills. Two miscarriages and gynecological surgery followed. So did an affair with Yves Montand. Work on her last picture Misfits, The (1961), written for her by departing husband Miller) was interrupted by exhaustion. She was dropped from "Something's Got to Give" due to chronic lateness and drug dependency. Four months later she was found dead in her Brentwood home of a drug overdose, adjudged suicide.
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Mini biography
The most celebrated of all actresses, Marilyn Monroe, was born Norma Jean Mortenson, on June 1, 1926, in the Los Angeles General Hospital, in California. Prior to her birth, Marilyn's father bought a motorcycle and headed north to San Francisco, thus abandoning the family in LA. Marilyn grew up not knowing for sure who her father really was. Her mother, Gladys, had entered into several relationships thus confusing her daughter who fathered her. Afterward, Gladys gave Norma Jean (Marilyn) the name of Baker, a previous suitor before Mortenson. Poverty was a constant companion. Gladys, who was extremely attractive and worked for RKO Studios as a film cutter, suffered from mental illness and therefore was in and out of mental institutions for the rest of her life. Subsequently, Marilyn spent time in foster homes. When she was nine, Marilyn was placed in an orphanage where she was to stay for the next two years. When she was released from the orphanage, she went to, yet, another foster home. In 1942, at the age of sixteen Marilyn married an aircraft plant worker by the name of James Dougherty who was 21. The marriage only lasted four years when they divorced in 1946. By this time, Marilyn began to model swim suits and bleached her hair blonde. Various shots made their way into the public eye, where some were eventually seen by RKO head, Howard Hughes. Hughes offered Marilyn a screen test, but an agent suggested that Fox Studios would be the better choice since it was bigger and more prestigious. She was signed to a contract at $125 per week for a six month period and that was increased by $25 at the end of that time when her contract was lengthened. Her first film was in 1947 with a bit part in THE SHOCKING MISS PILGRIM. Her next production was not much better. 1948 saw Marilyn in the largely forgettable, SCUDDA HOO! SCUDDA HAY! The two of the three brief scenes she appeared wound up on the cutting room floor. Later that same year, Marilyn was given a better role as Evie in DANGEROUS YEARS. Twentieth Century-Fox declined to renew her contract, so she went back to modeling and acting school. Columbia Studios then picked her up to portray Peggy Martin in the film short LADIES OF THE CHORUS (1948) where she sang two numbers. Even the notices from the critics were favorable, but Columbia dropped her after that film. Once again, Marilyn returned to modeling. In 1949, Marilyn appeared in United Artists' film LOVE HAPPY. It was also the same year she posed nude for the now famous calendar shot which was later to appear in Playboy magazine in 1953 and further boost her career. She would be Playboy's first centerfold in that magazine's long and illustrious history. 1950 proved to be a good year for Marilyn. Not because she appeared in five films, but for the notices for her small ones in two of the five. they were THE ASPHALT JUNGLE with MGM and ALL ABOUT EVE with Fox. Even though both roles were amounted to bit parts and the latter received Oscar nominations, movie fans remembered her dumb blonde performance. In 1951, Marilyn got a fairly sizable role in LOVE NEST. The public was now getting to know Marilyn and was enthralled with her. She exuded an almost innocence about the aura of sexuality about her. In 1952, Marilyn appeared in DON'T BOTHER TO KNOCK in which she played a babysitter who was somewhat mentally unbalanced. She didn't fare well with the critics in this one. Later in the year she appeared in MONKEY BUSINESS where she was seen for the first time as a platinum blonde. The look became her trademark. The next year she appeared in GENTLEMEN PREFER BLONDES as Lorelei Lee. It was also the same year she began dating the baseball great, Joe DiMaggio. Marilyn was now a box-office drawing card. Later, she appeared with Betty Grable, Lauren Bacall and Rory Calhoun in HOW TO MARRY A MILLIONAIRE. Although her co-stars got the rave reviews, it was the sight of Marilyn who excited the audience, particularly if they were men. On January 14, 1954, Marilyn wed DiMaggio, then proceeded to film THERE'S NO BUSINESS LIKE SHOW BUSINESS. That was quickly followed by THE SEVEN YEAR ITCH which was released in 1955 and showcased her comedic talent. By October of 1954, Marilyn announced her divorce from DiMaggio. The union lasted only eight months. In 1955, Marilyn was suspended by Fox for not reporting for work on HOW TO BE VERY POPULAR. It was her second suspension, the first being for not reporting for the production of THE GIRL IN PINK TIGHTS. Both roles went to others. In 1955, she appeared in THE SEVEN YEAR ITCH which showed one of film's most memorable scenes when she stands above a subway grate and the wind from a passing subway blowing her white dress up. It was to be the only film she appeared that year. Her work was slowing down to to her problems with being tardy to the set, being ill, whether real or imagined, and generally being unwilling to cooperate with the producers, directors, and fellow actors. In BUS STOP (1956), she finally showed the critics that she could play a dramatic role. It was also the same year she married playwright, Arthur Miller. (They divorced in 1960). In 1957, Marilyn flew to Britain to film THE PRINCE AND THE SHOWGIRL which proved less than reliable at the box-office. Though it made money, it was thought to be slow-moving. After a year off in 1958, Marilyn returned to the silver screen the next for the delightful comedy, SOME LIKE IT HOT with Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon. The film was an absolute smash hit with Curtis and Lemmon pretend to be females in an all girl band, so they can get work. That, again, would be the only film for the year. In 1960, Marilyn appeared in the production of George Cukor's LET'S MAKE LOVE, with Tony Randall and Yves Montand. Most critics considered it slow moving. The following year, Marilyn made, what was to be her final film. THE MISFITS would also prove to be the final film for the legendary Clark Gable who would die later that year of a heart attack. The film proved to be popular with critics and the public alike. In 1962, Marilyn was chosen for the film, SOMETHING'S GOT TO GIVE. Again her absenteeism caused delay after delay in production and she was fired in June. It looked as though her career was finished. Studios just didn't want to take a chance on her because it would cost them thousands of dollars in delays. She went in seclusion in her home in LA. On August 5, 1962, her housekeeper found her nude and lying face down on her bed, the victim of an overdose of sedatives. She was only 36. Marilyn made only 30 films in her lifetime, but her legendary status and mysticism will remain with film history forever.

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IMDb mini-biography by
Denny Jackson
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Spouse
Arthur Miller (June 29, 1956 - January 1961) (divorced)
Joe DiMaggio (14 January 1954 - 27 October 1954) (divorced)
James Dougherty (19 June 1942 - June 1945) (divorced)
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Trivia

(1999) Voted 'Sexiest Woman of the Century' by People Magazine.

Was 1947s Miss California Artichoke Queen.

Was a direct descendant of U.S. President James Monroe, on her mother's side.

Was roommates with Shelley Winters when they were both starting out in Hollywood.

(October 1997) Ranked #8 in Empire (UK) magazine's "The Top 100 Movie Stars of All Time" list.

Invited by Grauman's Chinese Theatre on June 26, 1952 to place handprints and footprints in their cement forecourt with Jane Russell. Monroe initially suggested that her bust and Russell's bottom (their greatest assets) should be imprinted in cement for posterity, but Grauman's was not amused. She settled for hand- and footprints and dotted the "i" in her signature with a rhinestone.

Voted EMPIRE's (UK) "sexiest female movie star of all time" in 1995

Playboy "Sweetheart" of the Month Decmeber 1953

When she died in 1962 at age 36, Marilyn Monroe left an estate valued at $1.6 million. In her will, Monroe bequeathed 75% of that estate to Lee Strasberg, her acting coach, and 25% to Dr. Marianne Kris, her psychoanalyst. A trust fund provided her mother, Gladys Baker Eley, with $5,000 a year. When Dr. Kris died in 1980, she passed her 25% on to the Anna Freud Centre, a children's psychiatric institute in London. Since Strasberg's death in 1982, his 75% has been administered by his widow, Anna, and her lawyer, Irving Seidman.

The licensing of Marilyn's name and likeness, handled world-wide by Curtis Management Group, reportedly nets the Monroe estate about $2 million a year.

The famous nude photo of her by Tom Kelley originally appeared Anonymously, on a calendar. A blackmailer then threatened to identify the photo as Marilyn, and she decided to announce the fact herself. Hugh M. Hefner then bought the rights to use the photo for $500 (and the calendar publisher saved him $1,000 by providing the color separations needed for publishing); it became the feature attraction in the first issue, December 1953, of his new magazine Playboy.

Was named the Number One Sex Star of the 20th Century by Playboy magazine in 1999.

Started using the name Marilyn Monroe in 1946, but did not legally change it until 1956.

Formed her own production company, Marilyn Monroe Productions, in 1955.

Appeared on the first cover of Playboy in 1953.

Had a dog named Tippy when she was a child. In her final, unfinished film, Something's Got To Give, the dog was also named Tippy.

Interred at Westwood Memorial Park, Los Angeles, California, USA, in the Corridor of Memories, crypt #24.

Hundreds of items of Marilyn memorabilia auctioned off in late October, 1999 by Christie's, with MM's infamous JFK birthday-gown fetching over $1 million.

Was a natural-born brunette.

(1995) Chosen by Empire magazine as one of the 100 Sexiest Stars in film history (#2).

Hugh Hefner owns the burial vault next to hers.

Died with the phone in her hand

Ex husband Joe DiMaggio put fresh roses at her memorial site for years after her death

When putting her imprints at Grauman's she joked that Jane Russell was best known for her large frontside and she was known for her wiggly walk, so Jane could lean over, and she could sit in it. It was only a joke, but she dotted the "I" in her name with a dime, which was stolen within days.

The character of Ginger from TV's Gilligan's Island was loosely based off of her.

Norma Jean's first modeling job paid only five dollars.

Frequently used Nivea moisturizer.

During the filming of Niagara (1953), Marilyn was still under contract as a stock actor, thus, she received less salary than her make-up man.

Often carried around the book, "The Biography of Abraham Lincoln."

Norma Jean was an outstanding player on the Hollygrove Orphanage softball team.

Because the bathing suit Marilyn wore in the movie Love Nest (1951) was so risque (for the time period) and caused such a commotion on the set, director Joseph M. Newman had to make it a closed set when she was filming.

It was in Marilyn's contract that she did not have to work when she was having her menstrual cycle.

Fearing blemishes, Marilyn washed her face fifteen times a day.

Marilyn was suggested as a possible wife for Prince Rainier of Monaco. He later married actress Grace Kelly.

Thought the right side of her face was her "best" side.

The first time she signed an autograph as Marilyn Monroe, she had to ask how to spell it. Marilyn didn't know where to put the "i" in "Marilyn".
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Personal quotes

"I love a natural look in pictures. I like people with a feeling one way or another - it shows an inner life. I like to see that there's something going on inside them."

"My problem is that I drive myself... I'm trying to become an artist, and to be true, and sometimes I feel I'm on the verge of craziness, I'm just trying to get the truest part of myself out, and it's very hard. There are times when I think, 'All I have to be is true'. But sometimes it doesn't come out so easily. I always have this secret feeling that I'm really a fake or something, a phony."

"They were terribly strict. They didn't mean any harm...it was their religion. They brought me up harshly." - Marilyn on living with the Bolenders when she was a little girl

"I was surprised to be so crazy about Joe. I expected a flashy New York sports type, and instead I met this reserved guy who didn't make a pass at me right away! He treated me like something special. Joe is a very decent man, and he makes other people feel decent too." - Marilyn on meeting Joe DiMaggio for the first time

"Joe hates crowds and glamour." - Marilyn explaining why Joe DiMaggio didn't come on one of her USO tours

"She gave more to the still camera than any actress, any woman I've ever photographed, infinitely more patient, more demanding of herself and more comfortable in front of the camera than away from it." - Richard Avedon

"My marriage didn't make me sad, but it didn't make me happy either. My husband and I hardly spoke to each other. This wasn't because we were angry. We had nothing to say. I was dying of boredom." - Marilyn on why she divorced James Dougherty

"I didn't want to give up my career, and that's what Joe wanted me to do most of all." - Marilyn on why her marriage to Joe DiMaggio couldn't work

"I want to be a big star more than anything. It's something precious."

"I was surprized to be so crazy about Joe. I expected a flashy New York sports type, and instead I met this reserved guy who didn't make a pass at me right away! He treated me like something special. Joe is a very decent man, and he makes other people feel decent too." - Marilyn on meeting Joe DiMaggio for the first time

"...a forceful actress, a gifted new star, worthy of all that fantastic press agentry. Her role here is not very big, but she makes it dominant." - Alton Cook of the New York World-Telegram and Sun, on her work in Clash by Night (1952)

"Jean Harlow was my idol." - Marilyn on her favorite actress, the first platinum blonde.

"The world around me then was kind of grim. I had to learn to pretend in order to - I don't know - block the grimness. The whole world seemed sort of closed to me... [I felt] on the outside of everything, and all I could do was to dream up any kind of pretend game." - Marilyn on drifting in and out of orphanages when she was little

"She was so adorable, so witty, such incredible fun and more physically attractive than anyone I could have imagined, apart from herself on the screen." - Laurence Olivier

"Grace McKee arranged the marriage for me, I never had a choice. There's not much to say about it. They couldn't support me, and they had to work out something. And so I got married." - Marilyn on her early marriage to James Dougherty

"I had the radio on" [Q. Did you have anything on ?]

"Chanel No. 5." [Q. What do you wear to bed ?]

"I'm not interested in money, I just want to be wonderful."

"A career is wonderful, but you can't curl up with it on a cold night."

"Sometimes I think it would be easier to avoid old age, to die, young, but then you'd never complete your life, would you? You'd never wholly know yourself..."

"A dollar for your thoughts..."

"I've been on a calendar, but never on time."

"No one ever told me I was pretty when I was a little girl. All little girls should be told they're pretty, even if they aren't."

"In Hollywood a girl's virtue is much less important than her hairdo. You're judged by how you look, not by what you are. Hollywood's a place where they'll pay you a thousand dollars for kiss, and fifty cents for your soul. I know, because I turned down the first offer often enough and held out for the fifty."

"Dogs never bite me. Just humans."

"Sex is a part of nature. I go along with nature."

"Fame will go by and, so long, I've had you, Fame. If it goes by, I've always known it was fickle."

"I knew I belonged to the public and to the world, not because I was talented or even beautiful, but because I never had belonged to anything or anyone else."

"People had a habit of looking at me as if I were some kind of mirror instead of a person. They didn't see me, they saw their own lewd thoughts, then they white-masked themselves by calling me the lewd one."

"A sex-symbol becomes a thing, I just hate being a thing. But if I'm going to be a symbol of something I'd rather have it sex than some other things we've got symbols of."

"The truth is I've never fooled anyone. I've let people fool themselves. They didn't bother to find out who and what I was. Instead they would invent a character for me. I wouldn't argue with them. They were obviously loving somebody I wasn't. When they found this out, they would blame me for disillusioning them---and fooling them."

"To put it bluntly, I seem to have a whole superstructure with no foundation. But I'm working on the foundation."

"If I had observed all the rules, I'd never have gotten anywhere."

"I want to grow old without face-lifts... I want to have the courage to be loyal to the face that I have made."

"It's often just enough to be with someone. I don't need to touch them. Not even talk. A feeling passes between you both. You're not alone."

"She was the victim of ballyhoo and sensation - exploited beyond anyone's means." - Laurence Olivier

"I'm a failure as a woman. My men expect so much of me, because of the image they've made of me and that I've made of myself, as a sex symbol. Men expect so much, and I can't live up to it."

"When Pearl Harbour was attacked, I was working at the Lockheed airplane factory in the sheet metal department running a shaper and a drop hammer. My partner was a guy named Jim Dougherty, married to a girl named Norma Jean Baker. So I knew her since 16. She was not a very sexy girl. She had no sex appeal whatsoever. She had a lot of serious physical problems. Yes, really. And very shy." - Robert Mitchum, Marilyn's costar in River of No Return (1954).

"Young lady, I think you're a case of arrested development. With your development, somebody's bound to get arrested." - Groucho Marx to Marilyn on the set of Love Happy (1950)

"During We're Not Married! (1952), she came running towards me and asked breathlessly, 'Where's the men's room?' I pointed and off she raced. I've never understood that." - Nunnally Johnson

"I could watch her movies forever. Whether you were a dog or a cat or a woman or a guy, you just LOVED her." - Natassja Kinski

"It stirs up envy, fame does. People you run into feel that, well, who does she think she is, Marilyn Monroe? They feel fame gives them some kind of privilege to walk up to you and say anything to you, you know, of any kind of nature - and it won't hurt your feelings."

"She's something different to each man, blending somehow the thing she seems to require most." - Clark Gable, who starred with Marilyn in her (and his) last film, Misfits, The (1961)

"Fame is fickle, and I know it. It has it's compensations but it also has it's drawbacks, and I've experienced them both."

"My illusions didn't have anything to do with being a fine actress. I knew how third rate I was. I could actually feel my lack of talent, as if it were cheap clothes I was wearing inside. But my God, how I wanted to learn, to change, to improve!"

"If I play a stupid girl, and ask a stupid question, I've got to follow it through. What am I supposed to do, look intelligent?"

On posing nude for the calendar in 1949: "My sin has been no more than I have written, posing for the nude because I desperately needed fifty dollars to get my car out of hock."

"An actor is supposed to be a sensitive intrument. Isaac Stern takes good care of his violin. What if everyone jumped on his violin?"

"There was my name up in lights. I said 'God, somebody's made a mistake!' But there it was in lights. And I sat there and said, 'Remember, you're not a star.' Yet there it was up in lights."

"Some people have been unkind. If I say I want to grow as an actress, they look at my figure. If I say I want to develop, to learn my craft, they laugh. Somehow they don't expect me to be serious about my work."

"I was never used to being happy, so that wasn't something I ever took for granted. I did sort of think, you know, marriage did that. You see, I was brought up differently from the average American child because the average child is brought up expecting to be happy - that's it, successful, happy, and on time."

"You know, when you grow up you can get kind of sour, I mean, that's the way it can go."

"Wouldn't it be nice to be like men and get notches in your belt and sleep with most attractive men and not get emotionally involved?"

"I used to think as I looked at the Hollywood night, 'There must be thousands of girls sitting alone like me, dreaming of becoming a movie star. But I'm not going to worry about them. I'm dreaming the hardest.'"

"The trouble with censors is they worry if a girl has cleavage. They ought to worry if she hasn't any."

"I used to say to myself, 'What the devil have you got to be proud about, Marilyn Monroe?' And I'd answer, 'Everything, everything.'"

On stardom: "It scares me. All those people I don't know, sometimes they're so emotional. I mean, if they love you that much without knowing you, they can also hate you the same way."

"Goethe said, 'Talent is developed in privacy, ' you know?And it's really true. There is a need for aloneness which I don't think most people realize for an actor. It's almost having certain kinds of secrets for yourself that you'll let the whole world in on only for a moment, when you're acting."

"Please don't make me a joke. End the interview with what I believe... I want to be an artist, an actress with integrity."

"I've never dropped anyone I believed in."

"Copulation was, I'm sure, Marilyn's uncomplicated way of saying thank you." - Nunnally Johnson

On John F. Kennedy: "It would be so nice to have a president who looks so young and good-looking."

"She is the original good time that was had by all." Bette Davis

"I restore myself when I'm alone. A career is born in public -- talent in private."
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Salary
Love Happy (1950) $100
Asphalt Jungle, The (1950) $1050
Clash By Night (1952) -> $500/wk We're Not Married! (1952) -> $750/wk Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953) -> $1,250/wk Seven Year Itch, The (1955) -> $1,500/wk Some Like it Hot (1959) -> $100,000 Misfits, The (1961) -> $300,000

Biography from Leonard Maltin's Movie Encyclopedia:
Actress. (b. June 1, 1926, Los Angeles, as Norma Jean Mortenson; d. Aug. 5, 1962.) Probably no other movie star-certainly no female one-has had her life as documented, discussed, and dissected.

Her unhappy childhood has been well reported, as has her early work as a pinup model and her eventual signing by 20th Century-Fox. She was barely visible inScudda Hoo! Scudda Hay! (1948),Ladies of the Chorus (1949), andA Ticket to Tomahawk (1950), but had a memorable bit opposite Groucho Marx inLove Happy (1949). She first turned heads with minor but well-crafted supporting roles (as mistresses) in two 1950 classics,All About Eve andThe Asphalt Jungle

It's difficult to pinpoint, at this late date, just who it was that first spotted the quiet blonde and saw in her a latent star quality that eluded others. (Certainly there are many whoclaimed to have recognized her talent.) In any event, her buildup began with better parts inLove Nest, Let's Make It Legal (both 1951),Clash by Night, We're Not Married andMonkey Business (all 1952). Though used most frequently as a sex object, it was clear that she had a sense of comedy and a magnetic screen presence. Her first leading role, as a psychotic baby-sitter in a 1952 programmer,Don't Bother to Knock identified Monroe as an emerging talent. She became a fullfledged star in 1953, shining as the murderous wife inNiagara the husbandhunting, not-so-dumb blonde inHow to Marry a Millionaire and the delightfully scheming showgirl Lorelei Lee inGentlemen Prefer Blondes (performing the classic "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend"). She showed some real fire in the WesternRiver of No Return (1954), and resumed singing-and-dancing chores inThere's No Business Like Show Business that same year. Billy Wilder'sThe Seven Year Itch (1955), a funny if mildly salacious comedy featuring Monroe as the lust object of bored husband Tom Ewell, included the classic scene in which the blond bombshell stands over a subway grating and has her skirt billowed by the breeze of a passing train. Her genuine sex appeal, wholesome yet somehow unattainable, made her a natural love goddess. (Her marriage to baseball hero Joe DiMaggio in 1954 completed the larger-than-life image.)

Monroe, knowing that her star was on the ascent but keenly aware of her thespic limitations, studied with the New York guru of the Actors' Studio, Lee Strasberg, and subsequently gave a powerful performance as a hapless entertainer inBus Stop (1956), and she took a flyer as producer of the unsuccessfulThe Prince and the Showgirl (1957), which teamed her with Laurence Olivier (who also directed)-and revealed no chemistry between the two. Wilder cast her as ukelelestrumming band singer Sugar Kane in his energetic 1920s farce Some Like It Hot (1959) and, in spite of well-publicized onthe-set tension, again got a delicious comic performance from her. Monroe, wracked by personal problems, insecurity, and self-induced health problems, only completed two more films:Let's Make Love (1960), an entertaining if unsubstantial movie costarring Yves Montand, andThe Misfits (1961), a thoughtful and powerful drama written for her by her thenhusband Arthur Miller and directed by John Huston (who'd cast her eleven years earlier in The Asphalt Jungle). Again, there was more written about the film's troubled production than about the picture itself-it was said to have brought on costar Clark Gable's fatal heart attack-but it served Monroe well, with a substantial part that indicated her still-untapped potential.

Her behavior became more and more erratic, and she was fired from Fox's 1962Something's Got to Give (which was revamped and filmed the next year asMove Over, Darling with Doris Day). Soon after she was found dead, from an "accidental overdose" of pills, though her alleged affairs with both John and Robert Kennedy have brought out foul-play conspiracists by the carload. In 1963 Fox released a compilation feature,Marilyn and a list of books and articles written about her would itself fill a book. Her tragic death-and troubled life-have inspired authors, songwriters, pop psychologists, and fervent fans, some of whom weren't alive during her heyday in the 1950s. She has also been portrayed-literally and symbolically-in a number of features and TV movies, most notably by Catherine Hicks in Marilyn: The Untold Story (1980, made for TV) and Theresa Russell in Insignificance (1985). It is obvious, however, that Monroe's many portrayers, and pretenders, can only hint at the natural charisma and sex appeal she projected.
 

These Items are FOR SALE to knowledgeable Collectors. Please ask all questions of provenance before purchase. Items are only exchangeable if autographs are not authentic.

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