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Week With Marilyn
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St. George Openair Cinema Celebrates Its Opening
Night With The Sydney Premiere Of My Week With Marilyn
will get a bit of the Hollywood glam treatment when
the premiere screening of 'My Week With Marilyn' opens
the 2012 season of St. George OpenAir Cinema on 11
Oscar® buzz has continued on Michelle Williams'
due to her impressive portrayal of Marilyn Monroe.
flick covers matters such as her charm, sexiness,
daring, challenges and Monroe's trip to England for
'The Prince and the Showgirl' with Sir Laurence Olivier
Clark, an employee of Sir Laurence Olivier's, documents
the tense interaction between Olivier and Marilyn
Monroe during production of The Prince and the Showgirl.
George Openair Cinema...
announced as features of the 2012 season are preview
screenings of THE ARTIST, a gorgeous homage to silent
films that proved a sensation at Cannes earlier this
year where it was awarded best actor, J. EDGAR directed
by Clint Eastwood and starring Leonardo DiCaprio as
the FBIs infamous boss, and GOODBYE, FIRST LOVE
a poignant French film which explores our lasting
attachment to first love.
2012 OpenAir program will also include blockbusters
such as MONEYBALL, which stars Brad Pitt and Jonah
Hill, and the hilarious comedy THE INBETWEENERS MOVIE,
which follows on from the edgy UK TV series about
the over-imagined sexual ambitions of a group of young
2012 St.George OpenAir Cinema program will feature
fourteen premiere or preview screenings, all the major
summer releases, and a selection of the year's best
full program will be announced on Friday 9 December
with tickets on sale from 9am on 15 December. Last
year more than 30,000 tickets and over a dozen screenings
were sold out in the first half hour alone, so be
full 2012 program will be available on online from
Saturday 10 December, visit www.stgeorge.com.au/openair
Mrs Macquaries Point, Sydney - adjacent to Royal Botanic
January 11 to February 18 2012
Gates, bar and restaurant open from 6.15pm
Films commence shortly after nightfall (approx. 8.30-8.45pm)
Tickets on sale from Thursday 15 December via the
event website www.stgeorge.com.au/openair
Advance Bookings*: General $30 / concession $28 +
booking fee Door Sales*: General $35 / concession
$32 *additional costs may apply for special presentations.
Week With Marilyn: The Cast...
Williams as Marilyn Monroe
Kenneth Branagh as Sir Laurence Olivier
Eddie Redmayne as Colin Clark
Judi Dench as Dame Sybil Thorndike
Emma Watson as Lucy
Dougray Scott as Arthur Miller
Dominic Cooper as Milton H. Greene
Julia Ormond as Vivien Leigh
Derek Jacobi as Sir Owen Morshead
Zoë Wanamaker as Paula Strasberg
Richard Clifford as Richard Wattis
Philip Jackson as Roger Smith
Simon Russell Beale as Admiral Cotes-Preedy
The Weinstein Company, BBC Films, Lipsync Productions
by Simon Curtis
Produced by David Parfitt and Harvey Weinstein
Office to date: $11,106,287
premature death was classified as a probable suicide.
Conspiracy theorists speculate that she was murdered.
She is #9 on the Forbes top earning dead celebrities
her husband was in the Merchant Marine during World
War II, Norma Jeane Dougherty moved in with her mother-in-law
where she started working in the Radioplane Company
factory owned by Hollywood actor Reginald Denny. Her
job required spraying airplane parts with fire retardant
and inspecting parachutes. Army photographer David
Conover was scouting local factories, taking photos
for a YANK magazine article about women contributing
to the war effort. He saw her potential as a model,
and she was soon signed by The Blue Book modeling
agency. Shortly after signing with the agency, Monroe
had her hair cut, straightened, and lightened to golden
blonde. She soon began researching actresses, enrolling
in drama classes, and singing classes.
became one of Blue Book's most successful models,
appearing on dozens of magazine covers. In 1946, she
came to the attention of talent scout Ben Lyon. He
arranged a screen test for her with 20th Century Fox.
She was offered a standard six-month contract with
a starting salary of $125 per week.
suggested she adopt Marilyn (after the famous actress
Marilyn Miller) as her stage name, since Norma Jeane
was not considered commercial enough. For her last
name, she took her mother's maiden name. Thus, the
20-year-old Norma Jeane Baker became Marilyn Monroe.
During her first six months at Fox, Monroe was given
no work, but Fox renewed her contract and she was
given minor appearances in Scudda Hoo! Scudda Hay!
and Dangerous Years, both released in 1947. In
Scudda Hoo!, her part was edited out of the film except
for a quick glimpse of her face when she speaks two
words. Fox decided not to renew her contract again.
Monroe returned to modelling and began to network
and make contacts in Hollywood. During this time is
when she posed for nude photographs which would later
be featured in the first issue of Playboy.
1948, during a six-month stint at Columbia Pictures,
she starred in Ladies of the Chorus. However the low-budget
musical was not a success and Monroe was dropped yet
again. She then met one of Hollywood's top agents,
Johnny Hyde, who had Fox re-sign her after MGM turned
her down. Darryl F. Zanuck, the vice-president of
Fox, was not convinced of Monroe's potential, but
because of Hyde's persistence, she gained supporting
parts in the Marx Brothers film Love Happy (1949),
and in Fox's All About Eve and MGM's The Asphalt Jungle
(both 1950). Even though the roles were small, moviegoers
as well as critics took notice. Hyde also arranged
for her to have minor plastic surgery on her nose
and chin, adding that to earlier dental surgery.
next two years were filled with inconsequential roles
in standard fare such as We're Not Married! and Love
Nest. However, RKO executives used her to boost box
office potential of the Fritz Lang production Clash
by Night. After the film performed well, Fox employed
a similar tactic, and she was cast as the ditzy receptionist
with Cary Grant and Ginger Rogers in Howard Hawks's
slapstick comedy Monkey Business. Critics no longer
ignored her, and both films' success at the box office
was partly attributed to Monroe's growing popularity.
finally gave her a starring role in 1952 with Don't
Bother to Knock, in which she portrayed a deranged
babysitter who attacks the little girl in her care.
It was a cheaply made B-movie, and although the reviews
were mixed, they claimed that it demonstrated Monroe's
ability and confirmed that she was ready for more
leading roles. Her performance in the film has since
been noted as one of the finest of her career.
proved she could carry a big-budget film when she
starred in Niagara in 1953. Movie critics focused
on Monroe's connection with the camera as much as
on the sinister plot. She played an unbalanced woman
planning to murder her husband.
this time, the nude photos of Monroe began to surface,
taken by photographer Tom Kelley during her unemployment.
Prints were bought by Hugh Hefner and, in December
1953, appeared in the first edition of Playboy. To
the dismay of Fox, Monroe decided to publicly admit
it was indeed her in the pictures. When a journalist
asked her what she wore in bed she replied, "Chanel
no.5". When asked what she had on during
the photo shoot, she replied, "The radio".
the following months, Gentlemen Prefer Blondes and
How to Marry a Millionaire cemented Monroe's status
as an A-list actress, and she became one of the world's
biggest movie stars. The lavish Technicolor comedy
films established Monroe's "dumb blonde"
Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, Monroe's turn as gold-digging
showgirl Lorelei Lee won her rave reviews, and
the scene where she sang "Diamonds Are a Girl's
Best Friend" has inspired the likes of Madonna,
Kylie Minogue and Geri Halliwell. In the Los Angeles
premiere of the film, Monroe and co-star Jane Russell
pressed their foot- and handprints in the cement in
the forecourt of Grauman's Chinese Theatre.
How to Marry a Millionaire, Monroe was teamed up with
Lauren Bacall and Betty Grable. She played a short-sighted
dumb blonde, and even though the role was stereotypical,
critics took note of her comedic timing.
next two films, the western River of No Return and
the musical There's No Business Like Show Business,
were not successful. Monroe tired of the roles that
Zanuck assigned her. After completing work on The
Seven Year Itch in early 1955, she broke her contract
and fled Hollywood to study acting with Lee Strasberg
at the Actors Studio in New York. Fox would not accede
to her contract demands and insisted she return to
work on productions she considered inappropriate,
such as The Girl in Pink Tights (which was never filmed),
The Girl in the Red Velvet Swing, and How to Be Very,
in New York Monroe set up her own production company
Maryiln Monroe Productions with fashion photographer
Milton H. Greene. She told a press conference she
had set up the production company 'so I can play the
better kind of roles I want to play.
The Seven Year Itch raced to the top of the box office
in the summer of 1955, and with Fox starlets Jayne
Mansfield and Sheree North failing to click with audiences,
Zanuck admitted defeat and Monroe returned to Hollywood.
A new contract was drawn up, giving Monroe approval
of the director as well as the option to act in other
first film to be made under the contract and production
company was Bus Stop, directed by Joshua Logan. She
played Chérie, a saloon bar singer who falls
in love with a cowboy. Monroe deliberately appeared
badly made-up and unglamorous. She was nominated for
a Golden Globe for the performance and was praised
by critics. Bosley Crowther of The New York Times
proclaimed: "Hold on to your chairs, everybody,
and get set for a rattling surprise. Marilyn Monroe
has finally proved herself an actress." In his
autobiography, Movie Stars, Real People and Me, director
Joshua Logan wrote: "I found Marilyn to be one
of the great talents of all time... She struck me
as being a much brighter person than I had ever imagined,
and I think that was the first time I learned that
intelligence and, yes brilliance have nothing to do
second movie filmed under her production company was
The Prince and the Showgirl starring Laurence Olivier.
Olivier praised Monroe's performance by saying she
was, "a brilliant comedienne, which to me means
she is also an extremely skilled actress" However
Olivier became furious at her habit of being late
to the set, as well as her dependency on her drama
coach, Paula Strasberg. Monroe's performance was hailed
by critics, especially in Europe, where she was handed
the David di Donatello, the Italian equivalent of
the Academy Award, as well as the French Crystal Star
Award. She was also nominated for the British BAFTA
1959, she scored the biggest hit of her career starring
alongside Jack Lemmon and Tony Curtis in Billy Wilder's
Some Like It Hot. After shooting finished, Wilder
publicly blasted Monroe for her difficult on-set behavior.
Soon, however, Wilder's attitude softened, and he
hailed her as a great comedienne. Some Like It Hot
is consistently rated as one of the best films ever
made. Monroe's performance earned her a Golden Globe
for best actress in musical or comedy.
Some Like It Hot, Monroe shot Let's Make Love directed
by George Cukor and co-starring Yves Montand. Monroe
was forced to shoot the picture because of her obligations
to Twentieth Century-Fox. While the film was not a
commercial or critical success, it included one of
Monroe's legendary musical numbers, Cole Porter's
"My Heart Belongs to Daddy".
Miller wrote what became her and her co-star Clark
Gable's last completed film, The Misfits. The exhausting
shoot took place in the hot Nevada desert. Monroe,
Gable and Montgomery Clift delivered performances
that are considered excellent by contemporary movie
critics. Tabloid magazines blamed Gable's death of
a heart attack on Monroe, claiming she had given him
a hard time on the set. Gable, however, insisted on
doing his own stunts and was a heavy smoker. After
Gable's death, Monroe attended the baptism of his
1961 some of the most famous photographs of Monroe
were taken by Douglas Kirkland as a feature for the
25th anniversary issue of LOOK magazine.
returned to Hollywood to resume filming on the George
Cukor comedy Something's Got to Give, a never-finished
film that has become legendary for problems on the
set and proved a costly debacle for Fox. In May 1962,
she made her last significant public appearance, singing
Happy Birthday, Mr. President at a televised birthday
party for President John F. Kennedy.
shooting what was claimed to have been the first ever
nude scene by a major motion picture actress, Monroe's
attendance on the set became even more erratic. On
June 1, her thirty-sixth birthday, she attended a
charity event at Dodger Stadium.
strained by the production costs of Cleopatra, starring
Elizabeth Taylor, Fox dropped Monroe from the film
and replaced her with Lee Remick. However, co-star
Dean Martin, who had a clause in his contract giving
him an approval over his co-star, was unwilling to
work with anyone but Monroe. She was rehired.
conducted a lengthy interview with Life, in which
she expressed how bitter she was about Hollywood labeling
her as a dumb blonde and how much she loved her audience.
She also did a photo shoot for Vogue and began discussing
a future film project with Gene Kelly and Frank Sinatra,
according to the Donald Spoto biography.
was planning to star in a biopic of Jean Harlow as
well as starring alongside Jack Lemmon in Irma La
Douce, a Billy Wilder comedy that eventually starred
Shirley MacLaine. Other projects under consideration
were What a Way to Go! (in which Shirley MacLaine
replaced her), Kiss Me, Stupid, a comedy starring
Dean Martin and Kim Novak, and a musical version of
A Tree Grows In Brooklyn.
the shooting of Something's Got to Give resumed, Monroe
was found dead in her Los Angeles home on the morning
of August 5, 1962. She remains one of the 20th century's
legendary public figures and archetypal Hollywood
movie stars. (Credit: