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Biography Of Marilyn Monroe




June 29, 1956 Marilyn weds Arthur Miller in a civil ceremony.

July 1, 1956 A marriage to Arthur Miller according to Jewish rites is held; Marilyn had converted to Judaism shortly before. At a press conference she reports: “We’re so congenial. This is the first time I’ve been really in love. Arthur is a serious man, but he has a wonderful sense of humor. We laugh and joke a lot. I’m mad about him.”

July 14, 1956 The newlyweds arrive in London and hold a press conference with Sir Laurence Olivier to announce the newest project, the first of the Marilyn Monroe Productions, Inc.: The Prince and the Showgirl.

A Marilyn craze has been sweeping England for weeks. But now the newspapers and magazines outdo each other with headlines and exaggerated inanities: “She walks. She talks. She really is as luscious as strawberries and cream.” (London Evening News) The reports on her arrival push the speech of Prime Minister Anthony Eden—a warning about the serious economic crisis—Marilyn’s dependency on medication becomes more acute during the difficult and emotionally trying filming, and her New York psychiatrist has to be flown in over the Atlantic after Paula Strasberg, Marilyn’s constant companion, returns to New York earlier than planned.

October 29, 1956 Marilyn is presented to Queen Elizabeth II at a Royal Command Film Performance.

November 20, 1956 Marilyn and Arthur Miller leave England after finishing shooting for The Prince and the Showgirl and finally set off to Jamaica on their belated honeymoon.

December 18, 1956 Marilyn is on a radio show in the Waldorf-Astoria.

Spring 1957 Her business partnership, Marilyn Monroe Productions, Inc., as well as her friendship with Milton H. Greene, falls apart. Greene’s comment on the failure: “I thought I’d seen them all; being in the business I’d seen so many models and actresses. But I’d never seen anyone with that tone of voice, that kindness, that real softness. If she saw a dead dog in the road, she’d cry. She was so supersensitive you had to watch your tone all the time. Later I was to find out that she was schizoid—that she could be absolutely brilliant or absolutely kind, then, the total opposite.” Marilyn’s detached reply: “My company was not set up merely to parcel out 49.4 % of all my earnings to Mr. Greene for seven years!” (Time, April 29, 1957)

June 13, 1957 The premiere of The Prince and the Showgirl is held at Radio City Music Hall, New York.

August 1, 1957 Marilyn suffers a miscarriage after a two-month pregnancy. The loss of the child evokes a new emotional crisis, and she makes her first suicide attempt.

August 4, 1958 Shooting begins for Some Like It Hot. Marilyn’s contradictory behavior, exaggerated and uncooperative, surpasses her previous misconduct on sets. Scheduled to shoot at midday, she often doesn’t appear until 6.00 P.M., if at all. She objects to the movie being filmed in black and white, instead of in color. She blames the studio for having replaced Frank Sinatra with Jack Lemmon. She doesn’t like working with Tony Curtis. She has problems with the director. Billy Wilder, who managed to survive The Seven Year Itchfour years earlier, goes through hell for the next four months—for a film that becomes the most successful comedy ever on screen.

September 19, 1958 Marilyn is admitted to Cedars of Lebanon Hospital for “nervous exhaustion.”

November 6, 1958 Filming of Some Like It Hot is completed.

December 17 1958 Marilyn has a second miscarriage.

March 29, 1959 Some Like It Hot premieres.

Early 1960 Filming of Let’s Make Love, a comedy directed by George Cukor, begins. The leading male role is played by Yves Montand, after refusals by Gregory Peck, Cary Grant, Charlton Heston, and Rock Hudson. A love affair with Yves Montand ends in November.

March 8, 1960 Marilyn Monroe receives the Golden Globe Award as “Best Actress in a Comedy” for her role in Some Like It Hot.

July 18, 1960 Filming of The Misfits begins in Nevada. Arthur Miller wrote the script for Marilyn; John Huston is the director. With Marilyn in the leading roles are her idol, Clark Gable, and Montgomery Clift. During the shooting of the film Marilyn makes a pact with her friend and press agent Rupert Allan: if one of them is thinking of suicide, that person agrees to call the other to talk him or her out of it. In case the other person is not in and a message has to be left, they decide on the password “Truckee River.” Marilyn makes a similar suicide pact with Lee Strasberg.

August 26, 1960 Marilyn Monroe suffers a nervous breakdown during the shooting for The Misfits and is flown to West-side Hospital, Los Angeles.

September 5, 1960 She returns to location.

November 4, 1960 The Misfits is completed.

November 11, 1960 A press bulletin announces that the marriage to Arthur Miller is to be dissolved.

November 16, 1960 Death of Clark Gable. During the Christmas holidays, the thirty-four-year-old Marilyn alarms her lawyer by asking him to draw up a new will.

January 20, 1961 The divorce from Arthur Miller is granted in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico.

January 31, 1961 Premiere of The Misfits. Many critics are less than generous in their reaction to Marilyn’s performance as Roslyn Tabor, an unhappy divorcee. Details other mental problems, her dependence on medication and alcohol reach the public.

February 7 1961 Admitted to Payne Whitney Psychiatric Clinic of New York Hospital. She calls Joe DiMaggio in Florida who immediately comes to New York to get her out. On the evening of the fourth day she is smuggled out of the clinic through the cellar.

February 11, 1961 She spends the next three weeks in the psychiatric division of Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center.

March 7 1961 As Marilyn leaves the clinic, she is beseiged by a horde of reporters and camera teams to an extent unparalleled in all the years of reporting on her private life. Marilyn has to be escorted through a cordon formed by sixteen policemen and hospital security personnel to her waiting limousine. Joe DiMaggio is Marilyn’s chief support at this time. She flies to Florida where Joe is coaching his former team, the New York Yankees. This year Marilyn is not able to work; two more hospital stays follow.

November 19, 1961 At Peter Lawford’s beach house in Santa Monica she meets President Kennedy. Rumors spread that she has sexual relationships with him and his brother Robert.

Early February 1962 Marilyn finds a house in the exclusive section of Brentwood (California). The secluded house on a dead-end street is not far from doctors and friends, like Dr. Greenson and Peter Lawford. Marilyn continues to see the Kennedy brothers in Lawford’s villa.

February 1, 1962 Dinner in honor of Robert F. Kennedy.

March 1962 Marilyn Monroe receives the Golden Globe Award as the World’s Film Favorite.

April 23, 1962 Filming for Something’s Got to Give begins. Henry Weinstein, producer of the film and friend of the Greenson family, is horrified to see the poor emotional and physical state that his superstar from Hollywood is in.

May 19, 1962 At John F. Kennedy’s birthday celebration in Madison Square Garden, fifteen thousand Democrats cheer their president. Jack Benny, Henry Fonda, Ella Fitzgerald, Peggy Lee, and Maria Callas make appearances. Marilyn Monroe sings “Happy Birthday” and “Thanks for the Memory”:

“Thanks, Mr. President,

For all the things you’ve done. The battles that you’ve won.

The way you deal with U. S. Steel, And our problems by the ton, We thank you—so much.”

May 28, 1962 Shooting of the famous swimming pool scene for the film Something’s Got to Give. The first nude photos since her famous calendar pinups are taken. The news that Marilyn has posed in the nude immediately hits the press with welcome publicity for the studio and approving comments on Marilyn’s well-preserved figure.

June 1, 1962 Marilyn’s birthday is her last full working day at 20th Century-Fox and her last public appearance.

June 8, 1962 The production of Something’s Got to Give is interrupted because Marilyn continually arrives too late or not at all. She justifies her absence by referring to the unfinished script and the viral infections she has contracted. Marilyn is fired by Fox. In an ad in Variety the studio employees and other actors in the film sarcastically thank Marilyn for the loss of their jobs due to her arbitrary behavior. The studio sues Marilyn for half a million dollars in damages. When Dean Martin refuses to work with another actress, he too is sued. In a telegram Marilyn expresses her regrets to all concerned. The studio soon realizes that Marilyn cannot be replaced, withdraws its charges, and begins to negotiate with her. The film is planned to be finished by the end of the year.

June 23, 1962 The three-day photo session with Bert Stern, commissioned by Vogue, begins. Of the twenty-seven hundred photographs that are made, only eight appear in Vogue. In 1982 all the remaining pictures are published in Germany in book form (Bert Stern: Marilyn Monroe. The Complete Last Sitting).

June 28, 1962 Marilyn meets with leading representatives of 20th Century- Fox to discuss her future work in Something’s Got to Give.

August 3, 1962 Last Life cover story before Marilyn’s death.

August 4, 1962 Marilyn Monroe’s last day. In the afternoon U. S. Attorney General Robert Kennedy visits her, together with a doctor who gives her a tranquilizer to calm her down. The list of telephone calls for this day disappears. Peter Lawford states that he talked with her a few hours before her death.

August 5, 1962 On the morning of this day, Dr. Greenson finds Marilyn dead in her house. The Associated Press reports the next day: “HOLLYWOOD—Blonde and beautiful Marilyn Monroe, a glamorous symbol of the gay, exciting life of Hollywood, died tragically Sunday. Her body was found nude in bed, a probable suicide. . . . The long-troubled star clutched a telephone in one hand. An empty bottle with sleeping pills was nearby.” Joe DiMaggio, Mrs. Bernice Miracle, and Inez Melson arrange for a private funeral.

August 8, 1962 Marilyn is buried in a crypt in Westwood Memorial Park Chapel. On the ribbon of an anonymously donated wreath is the text of a sonnet by Elizabeth Barrett Browning, including the lines:

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. . . . I love thee with the breath,

Smiles, tears, of all my life!—and, if God choose, I shall but love thee better after death.

August 18, 1962 Press bulletin of the “suicide investigation team” confirms that Marilyn died of an overdose of barbiturates. The investigation into the cause of death is halted. The press refers to mysterious pressure on the investigating authorities to end their inquiries.

August 28, 1962 The death certificate is issued.


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