Happy B-Day, Norma Jean

Posted: June 1, 2011 in celebrities, cinema, divas, lyrics, music, news
Tags: , , , , , ,

Marilyn Monroe (Norma Jean Mortenson or Norma Jean Baker later) was born June 1, 1926. The American actress, singer and model is still one of the world’s best-known sex symbols more than 40 years after her death. She would be turning 85 years old today.

“Your candle burned out long before
Your legend ever did…”

See rare photos of Marilyn: http://ibnlive.in.com/photogallery/4064.html

IMDb Mini Biography By: Ed Stephan

Probably the most celebrated of all actresses, Marilyn Monroe was born
Norma Jean Mortenson on Tuesday, June 1st, 1926, in Los Angeles General Hospital. Her mother was a film-cutter at RKO Studios who, widowed and mentally ill, 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 (1948) in which she sang two numbers. Joseph L. Mankiewicz saw her in a small part in The Asphalt Jungle (1950) and put her in All About Eve (1950), resulting in 20th Century re-signing her to a seven-year contract. Niagara (1953) and Gentlemen’s 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 The Seven Year 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 (1957) with Laurence 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 the unfinished Something’s Got to Give (1962) due to chronic lateness and drug dependency. Four months later she was found dead in her Brentwood home of a drug overdose, adjudged “probable suicide”.

CANDLE IN THE WIND
Available on the album “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road”
Music: Elton John
Lyrics: Bernie Taupin

Goodbye Norma Jean
Though I never knew you at all
You had the grace to hold yourself
While those around you crawled
They crawled out of the woodwork
And they whispered into your brain
They set you on the treadmill
And they made you change your name

chorus

And it seems to me you lived your life
Like a candle in the wind
Never knowing who to cling to
When the rain set in
And I would have liked to have known you
But I was just a kid
Your candle burned out long before
Your legend ever did

Loneliness was tough
The toughest role you ever played
Hollywood created a superstar
And pain was the price you paid
Even when you died
Oh the press still hounded you
All the papers had to say
Was that Marilyn was found in the nude

[repeat chorus]

Goodbye Norma Jean
Though I never knew you at all
You had the grace to hold yourself
While those around you crawled
Goodbye Norma Jean
From the young man in the 22nd row
Who sees you as something more than sexual
More than just our Marilyn Monroe

[repeat chorus]

© 1973 Dick James Music Limited

Comments
  1. [...] more about her on Wikipedia. For another post in this blog about Marilyn, click here. Enjoy the [...]

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