If I'd observed all the rules, I'd
never have got anywhere.
Marilyn Monroe died in
1962, but interest in her
life and her story
continues in popular
culture and in feminist
Monroe, born Norma
Jean Mortensen, was
born in 1926, starred in
films, married Arthur
Miller and Joe
DiMaggio, and died of an
overdose of barbiturates.
I'm very definitely a woman and I enjoy it.
I don't mind living in a man's world as long as I can be a
woman in it.
I don't want to make money. I just
want to be wonderful.
Acting isn't something you do. Instead of doing it, it occurs. If you're
going to start with logic, you might as well give up. You can have
conscious preparation, but you have unconscious results.
My work is the only ground I've ever had to stand on. I seem to have a
whole superstructure with no foundation -- but I'm working on the
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 trouble with censors is that they worry if a girl has cleavage. They
ought to worry if she hasn't any.
An actress is not a machine, but they treat
you like a machine. A money machine.
I'm trying to find myself as a person, sometimes
that's not easy to do. Millions of people live
their entire lives without finding themselves.
But it is something I must do. The best way for
me to find myself as a person is to prove to
myself that I am an actress.
Being a sex symbol is a heavy load to carry, especially when
one is tired, hurt and bewildered.
Creativity has got to start with humanity and when you're a
human being, you feel, you suffer.
From the eulogy by Lee Strasberg: She had a luminous quality -- a
combination of wistfulness, radiance, yearning, that set her apart and
yet made everyone wish to be part of it, to share in the childlike naiveté
which was at once so shy and yet so vibrant.
I love to do the
It's better to be unhappy alone
than unhappy with someone.
I am trying to prove to myself that I am a person. Then may be I'll
convince myself that I'm an actress.
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!
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
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.
A career is born in public --
talent in privacy.
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.
It's not true I had nothing on, I had
the radio on.
It's better for the whole world to know you, even as a sex star, than
never to be known at all.
If I'm a star, then the people made me a star.
I have feelings too. I am still
human. All I want is to be loved, for
myself and for my talent.
A career is wonderful thing, but you can't snuggle up to it on a cold
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
I have too many fantasies to be a
housewife.... I guess I am a fantasy.
About Marilyn Monroe, by her ex-husband, Arthur Miller: To
have survived, she would have had to be either more cynical or
even further from reality than she was. Instead, she was a poet
on a street corner trying to recite to a crowd pulling at her
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?
What good is it being Marilyn
Monroe? Why can't I just be an
ordinary woman? A woman who
can have a family ... I'd settle for
just one baby. My own baby.
The body is meant to be seen, not
all covered up.
I am invariably late for appointments ... sometimes, as much
as two hours. I've tried to change my ways but the things that make me
late are too strong, and too pleasing.
To a reporter: Please don't make me a
Everyone's just laughing at me. I hate it. Big breasts, big ass, big
deal, Can't I be anything else ? Gee, how long can you be sexy?40
Shelley Winters: If she'd been
dumber, she'd have been happier.
Billy Wilder: The luminosity of that face!
There has never been a woman with
such voltage on the screen, with the
exception of Garbo.
Also from Lee Strasberg's eulogy:
Marilyn Monroe was a legend. In her
lifetime she created a myth of what a
poor girl from a deprived background
could attain. For the entire world she
became a symbol of the eternal
Groucho Marx: It's amazing. She's Mae
West, Theda Bara and Bo Peep all rolled
Before marriage, a girl has
to make love to a man to
After marriage, she has to
hold him to make love to
1956 interview about her childhood: Looking back, I guess I used to play-
act all the time. For one thing, it meant I could live in a more interesting
world than the one around me.
I don't know who invented high
heels, but all women owe him a lot.
It's woman's spirit and
mood a man has to
stimulate in order to
make sex interesting.
The real lover is the
man who can thrill
you by touching your
head or smiling into
your eyes or just
staring into space.
Men who think that a
woman's past love
affairs lessen her love
for them are usually
stupid and weak. A
woman can bring a
new love to each man
she loves, providing
there are not too
I have feelings too. I am still human. All I want is to be
loved, for myself and for my talent.
Marilyn Monroe was found dead by her housekeeper on August 5, 1962.
Her death was ruled as an overdose of sleeping pills. Questions remain
about the circumstances and timeline of housekeeper Eunice Murray’s
discovery of Monroe’s body. Also, some conspiracy theories involve John
and Robert Kennedy. The official cause of her death was “probable