Marilyn Monroe, a famous and beloved actress, sadly passed away on August 5, 1962. Even after all these years, she still remains a memorable and influential icon. However, some parts of her story have been overlooked because of sensationalized rumors and misconceptions. We want to take you on a journey to discover the real Marilyn Monroe, beyond the stereotypes of her being just a “dumb blonde” and the mystery surrounding her death. In this article, get ready to learn everything you need to know about Marilyn Monroe, and prepare to be amazed!
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Birth and Background
Marilyn Monroe, also known as Norma Jeane Mortenson, was a famous American actress, model, and singer. Monroe’s mother, Gladys Baker, faced hardship and married an abusive man at a young age. Despite divorcing him, he took away their two children, Monroe’s half-siblings, after she had fought for sole custody and won. Unable to care for Monroe mentally or financially, Baker placed her in foster homes. However, Monroe’s mother visited her regularly and eventually managed to buy a small house in Hollywood when Monroe was seven years old.
Tragically, Gladys was diagnosed with schizophrenia and spent the rest of her life in hospitals. This left Monroe under the care of her friend, Grace Goddard, but she was eventually placed back into an orphanage. These problematic experiences during her childhood fueled Monroe’s drive to pursue acting, seeking solace and escape through the performing arts.
Marilyn Monroe: From Factory Worker to Hollywood Icon
During World War II, Monroe started working at a factory, where fate intervened and she crossed paths with photographer David Conover in 1944. Mesmerized by her beauty, Conover convinced her to leave her job and pursue a career in modeling. With his guidance, Monroe signed a modeling contract with Blue Book in August 1945, adopting the pseudonym Jean Norman.
In 1946, Monroe’s talent caught the attention of 20th Century Fox, and she embarked on a new journey as an actress, choosing the name ‘Marilyn Monroe’. Although her initial roles were minor, her determination led to a breakthrough when she landed her first major role in the film “Ladies of the Chorus” (1948) upon joining Columbia Pictures in March 1948.
After proving her acting prowess, Monroe’s star power resulted in her re-signing a seven-year contract with 20th Century Fox in 1950. Throughout this period, she demonstrated her versatility by taking on supporting roles in numerous films, steadily growing in popularity. Simultaneously, her sultry modeling photos resurfaced, further fueling her status as a sex symbol and propelling her to the top of the acting ladder.
By 1953, Monroe had become one of Hollywood’s most sought-after actresses. Her impressive performance in “Niagara” solidified her position as a leading lady. Although faced with a brief suspension from the studio, Monroe made an epic comeback in “The Seven Year Itch” (1955), marking one of the most successful films of her career.
In 1954, Monroe’s ambitions led her to establish her own film production company, following disagreements with 20th Century Fox. However, after reconciling their differences, she starred in the acclaimed film “Some Like It Hot” (1959), which not only earned her widespread acclaim but also a Best Actress Golden Globe Award.
Monroe’s last completed film was “The Misfits” (1961), where she portrayed the character Roslyn Tabor. Tragically, beneath her glamorous exterior, Monroe battled with addiction throughout her iconic career. On August 4, 1962, she was discovered lifeless in her Los Angeles home, her death at the age of 36 was ruled as a suicide resulting from a barbiturate overdose.
Although marriage was a part of Monroe’s life, she never experienced the joy of having children. Despite her untimely demise, her legacy as a talented and influential actress continues to captivate audiences worldwide.
Marilyn Monroe Husbands
Dougherty and Monroe got married in 1942 when she was only 16 and he was 21. Monroe’s foster parents were going back to West Virginia, and she was worried about being sent to an orphanage. Monroe’s own mom had problems with mental illness, which made things even tougher for her.
When Monroe married Dougherty, it saved her from going to an orphanage, but she had to quit school and become a housewife. In 1944, a photographer noticed Monroe and she began modeling, which helped her career take off. Two years later, Monroe and Dougherty got a divorce.
In 2000, Dougherty wrote a book called “To Norma Jeane With Love, Jimmie,” where he said he couldn’t handle the changes in Monroe once she became famous. He still loved the old Norma Jeane, but didn’t know this new person called “Marilyn Monroe”. Dougherty got married two more times and had three kids before he passed away in 2005.
The famous movie star got married for the second time to a baseball player named DiMaggio. Their relationship didn’t last very long, but it caused a lot of talk in Hollywood. They met in 1952 and got married two years later at a special place called San Francisco City Hall. Monroe surprised everyone by wearing a black suit instead of a regular white wedding dress.
But things didn’t go well between them. Monroe decided to end the marriage in October 1954 after less than nine months, saying that DiMaggio treated her badly. One big argument they had was about a famous picture of Monroe standing over a subway grate in a movie called The Seven Year Itch. The picture became famous, but it made DiMaggio really mad. Their fight over that picture caused more problems, and they officially got divorced after the movie was released. But Monroe’s picture is still remembered by everyone.
Monroe got married for the third time to a man named Arthur Miller, who was a famous writer. Miller won an important award for one of his plays called Death of a Salesman. Some people think Monroe and Miller met in 1951, but officially they got together in 1955, after Monroe ended her relationship with DiMaggio.
After Monroe and DiMaggio’s divorce was final, Miller left his first wife to marry Monroe in 1956. They had some problems because they led very different lives. Miller was a writer, while Monroe was a big Hollywood star. They also faced many challenges during their relationship. Monroe had pregnancies but sadly lost the babies, and Miller was accused of supporting communism when people were very afraid of it.
In November 1960, the couple said they were separating, and the next year they got divorced. Monroe never got married again after Miller. Sadly, just over a year after the divorce, Monroe died from taking too much of a drug called barbiturates on August 4, 1962. They had her funeral at the Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery.
Monroe’s Enduring Legacy: Fashion, Film, and Criticisms
Even after many years since her death, Monroe is still loved and admired as an American icon. In May 2022, Kim Kardashian made news by wearing Monroe’s famous dress that she wore while singing “Happy Birthday Mr. President” to the Met Gala. This made Monroe’s place in fashion history even stronger. There have been several movies made about Monroe’s life, like My Week With Marilyn in 2011, where Michelle Williams played Monroe, and the movie Blonde in 2022, where Ana de Armas played Monroe. Before Blonde was released, some people criticized it because it tells a made-up story based on a novel instead of a real biography.
Marilyn Monroe’s story is one filled with hardship and resilience. Despite facing difficult childhood experiences, she rose to become a beloved actress and influential icon, leaving behind a lasting legacy in fashion and film.