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To Marilyn Monroe Gallery #1
Marilyn Monroe Height 5' 5" Born June 1 1926, Los Angeles, California, USA
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Marilyn Monroe:Marilyn Monroe
Date of Birth
1 June 1926, Los Angeles, California, USA
Date of Death
5 August 1962, Los Angeles, California, USA. (drug overdose)
Norma Jean Mortensen
The Blonde Bombshell
5' 5½" (1.66 m)
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 The Asphalt Jungle (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 The Seven Year Itch (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 'Joe Dimaggio' (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 The Misfits (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.
Probably the most celebrated of all actresses, Marilyn Monroe was born Norma Jean Mortenson on June 1, 1926, in Los Angeles General Hospital. Prior to her birth, Marilyn's father bought a motorcycle and headed north to San Francisco, abandoning the family in Los Angeles. Marilyn grew up not knowing for sure who her father really was. Her mother, Gladys, had entered into several relationships, further confusing her daughter as to who it was who fathered her. Afterward, Gladys gave Norma Jean (Marilyn) the name of Baker, a boyfriend she had before Mortenson. Poverty was a constant companion to Gladys and Norma. Gladys, who was extremely attractive and worked for RKO Studios as a film cutter, suffered from mental illness and was in and out of mental institutions for the rest of her life, and because of that Norma Jean spent time in foster homes. When she was nine she was placed in an orphanage where she was to stay for the next two years. Upon being released from the orphanage, she went to yet another foster home. In 1942, at the age of 16, Norma Jean married 21-year-old aircraft plant worker James Dougherty. The marriage only lasted four years, and they divorced in 1946. By this time Marilyn began to model swimsuits and bleached her hair blonde. Various shots made their way into the public eye, where some were eventually seen by RKO Pictures headHoward Hughes. He offered Marilyn a screen test, but an agent suggested that 20th Century-Fox would be the better choice for her, since it was a much bigger and more prestigious studio. She was signed to a contract at $125 per week for a six-month period and that was increased by $25 per week at the end of that time when her contract was lengthened.
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