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The Immortal Marilyn Monroe

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I was only 12 when Marilyn Monroe died. It was one of those things that stick with you because of what it represents to you. For me, it was the first time the idea of death really became real in my mind. To see such a young, beautiful, and famous person die made me realize that you don’t have to be really old to die. You could die at any age. You could even die when you’re 12.

I had experienced something similar a couple of years before, when Lucy and Desi got divorced. I suddenly realized that divorce was real and could happen to anyone, even my own parents.

Marilyn Monroe, of course, turned out to be much more than just another movie star. She became an American icon, like Coca-Cola or Babe Ruth. Her image is everywhere, not just in her home country, but around the world. She represents America in the minds of many people.

The funny thing is that she wasn’t what you would call a great actress, or a great singer. But she was a great presence. She lit up the screen just by being there. Watching her perform, you discover that you can’t take your eyes off her. In this video from Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, in perhaps her most iconic role as a seductive golddigger, she’s singing “Bye Bye Baby”. Go ahead, try to look away. I dare you.

Her death, of course, while ruled a suicide, remains wrapped in mystery. There is plenty of circumstantial evidence to suggest that she was either murdered or perhaps the victim of an accidental overdose, and conspiracy theories abound.

But Marilyn Monroe has become immortalized. She lives on through her movies and ubiquitous image. If she had not died 45 years ago today, at the age of 36, she’d be 81 now. It’s kind of hard to imagine what she might look like, but I’m guessing she’d still be pretty damn hot.

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About Doug DeLong

  • Dear Doug,

    I am so happy that blogcritics hasn’t forgotten Marilyn. I will forever be grateful to Eric, that he heard me, in my desperate request to warn the world about what turned out to be the biggest exhibition fraud in history. There truly wasn’t a bigger one, than what we dicovered in November 2005. More and more and more scandals are just coming to light. Two weeks ago, I realized (and have also proof for that one), that they defrauded HOLLYGROVE, an organization for children and families, where Marilyn herself stayed (when it used to be an orphanage, only), and all of the criminals have not give one cent to them, but they claimed to. These news are to me of greater importance than if she was sleeping around. She was not. She pulled through 30 movies in her short 36 years. I wish people would gain a little more respect for Marilyn Monroe, AKA Norma Jeane Baker.
    One month ago, I filed for disbarment of Mark Roesler–the former licensing lawyer of Marilyn. And I am absolutely confident that I will have him disbarred.
    Please watch what I was able to retrieve–these images are important documents in the history of Marilyn Monroe and the aftermath–they are now part of The Mark Bellinghaus Marilyn Monroe Collection and they will hopefully end up some day, when it is my turn to leave my own body, in a museum that is hopefully respectful to Marilyn’s true legacy.
    Greetings to all my fellow blogcritics.
    Friends Through Marilyn!

    Silent Scream by Mark Bellinghaus, Los Angeles, CA, August 4/5, 2007

    A lonesome white terrycloth bathing robe,
    on the floornext to the simple bed,
    Address books, unopened
    Erno Laszlo face cream,
    Scripts and an empty Mexican drinking glass.
    The last companions of a goddess,
    Laying naked on her last rest
    In this world.

    Crickets continue the concerto,
    After the record player stopped to sooth the Princess into the eternal journey.

    A mild honking of a speeding car,
    From the nearby running San Vicente Blvd,Brentwood,
    California on a Saturday night…
    People are having fun, driving towards the Santa Monica beach,
    The beach Norma Jeane loved so much,
    Had happy memories of spinning wheels on the sand,
    As a fast growing teenage girl,
    The beaten,
    the abused,
    the molested,
    little girl,
    which spent two years behind the protecting walls,
    of the traditional, the caring Hollygrove Orphanage,
    Norma Jeane wasn’t an orphan…
    Norma Jeane was different than others,
    Always taller than the other girls her age.
    Always trying something new.
    Like the Goddard sisters as her companions,
    On a hot summer day.
    On the beach.
    On the very beach, that now was only a few miles away.
    Santa Monica pier was filled with life, laughter and voices of joy.

    But who would have thought, that “Eve, the waitress,” Peggy Martin,” “Clara, a showgirl,” “Angela Phinlay,” “Miss Caswell,” “Polly, a groupie,” “Miss Martin, a secretary,” “Harriet, a secretary,” “Roberta Stevens, an ex-WAC,””Joyce, a blonde,” “Peggy, a fish cannery worker,” “Annabel Norris, a beauty queen,” “Nell, a disturbed babysitter,” “Lois Laurel, a secretary,” “Rose Loomis, a murderous wife,” “Lorelei Lee, a gold & diamond digger,” “Pola, Debevoise, a radiant, prescription glasses wearing (and hiding) blonde in search of a millionaire,” “Kay, a saloon and “Mark” loving singer,” (Down In The Meadow), “Vicky, a singer,” “The girl upstairs, (The Seven Year Itch), “Cherie, a chanteuse with Hollywood dreams (“Hollywood & Vine!),” “Elsie Marina, an actress turning Princess,” “Sugar Cane, a singer with a girls band and a drinking problem,” “Amanda Dell, another blonde actress & dancer,” “Roslyn Tabet, a divorcee in search for the meaning of life,” “Ellen, (Eve) a woman, beautiful, platinum blonde, who just returned from an island…

    and all the many other wonderful mostly nameless characters,
    this magnificent beautiful angel once brought to life,
    and gave immortality,
    breathing life into their written descriptions,
    with her own, unique magic, her method-acting, and her soul,
    would be left alone,
    at her beautiful new home,
    to simply die.

    The honking cars, the life outside the Spanish Hacienda,
    Marilyn’s only baby, that she personally pampered,
    And treated like other women,
    Would be treating their husbands and children,
    The Saturday night life, for which Los Angeles, the City of Angels,
    Is worldwide known for,
    All of this,
    It wasn’t to awake the dying angel,
    Who came to us,
    On a cloud,
    built out of hope and vulnerability,
    And trust in people’s goodness.

    Breathe, my love,
    Don’t die,
    Please,Don’t die!
    The world needs you,
    they just are too busy to care…for you
    And themselves…

    And I will be there for you,
    Yet I’m not even born,
    Forgive me,Will you?

    Eunice, Eunice, Eunice!
    Wake up, Eunice,Please, Eunice,
    Wake up!

    Marilyn is dying,
    And She Needs,
    When all she wanted,
    Is to die.

    Marilyn,Your friend,
    The one you went to Mexico with,
    Just six months earlier,
    To furnish her home,
    And return with Marilyn’s own taste and style,
    The tables, the Chac Mool wall hanging, the glass art, pottery and straw hats,
    And the many other treasures, like the blue dove, which meant so much
    To Marilyn, a symbol of peace,
    The paintings, abstract, modern yet filled with meaningful impressions,
    Reminding her of her studies,
    at UCLAthe art classes she took,
    In her lifelong hunger for knowledge,
    And wisdom and intellectuality…

    The things that defined the private Hollywood super star,
    Which are mostly still unknown,
    To the reader of rumors,
    About love affairs with Elvis Presley,
    Joan Crawford, Tony Curtis, Robert Slatzer, the Kennedys (of course),
    Those “facts” are known,
    And welcome,
    For the dominatrix, that is annually milking her precious, platinum holy cow…

    A silent scream, in the middle of Brentwood, California,
    California dreaming,
    And dying, once in a while,
    With headlines, sad and thick.

    A dateless Saturday night,
    no dinner invitations,
    No word of Jose Bolanos?
    The last love in the short, only 36 years lasting life,
    Of a sex symbol.
    Promising, awarded talent and sensation.

    This night in early August, of 1962,
    Became the trap of luring death,
    Knocking on a bedroom door,
    Which later would be found locked…
    A window had to be broken,
    In attempt to save the Hollywood siren.
    Too late.
    This time,
    She made sure,
    Her journey would not be interrupted.
    The answer to “why” will forever remain,
    Like the mystique of Cleopatra, the sphinx, Mona Lisa, Botticelli’s Venus,
    Or even beautiful and ageless at Nefertitiat 3340 years of age,
    A sheer miracle…
    Did Marilyn know?
    That she would through her early and chosen departure,
    Become an instant legend and turn,

    Dead yes, but never forgotten.
    A high price to pay,
    Considering the lack of her biggest hope and goal:

    People seemed to want her fail,
    Made fun behind her back,
    imitated her walk and talk,
    Yet never reached her profession, her style, which she,
    Created in hard work,
    Lasting a lifetime.

    Haters stood in line, to sue her,
    To talk about her, and to put her down,

    Wanting to see her fail.
    In 1962 or 2007 no difference at all,

    Death was not up for a carpet beggars-deal,
    That tragic night,
    In summer’s prime,
    No dealing wanted or welcome,
    A decision was made out of pain, sadness disappointment,
    In people in general.

    You are beloved now,
    Are you really?
    Too many, who still use you,
    Betray you,
    Represent and “owned” you,
    Yet did never care about your hopes and tears.

    Nobody was there for you,
    Alone To Die.

  • I must agree with Mark Bellinghaus – thank you for remembering Marilyn Monroe and recognizing that she has become immortalized.

    She has become such a part of our culture but it has bordered on kitsch at moments because some have exploited her, so it is important to remember her not just as an icon but as a wonderful-hearted and unique human being.

    Of course we can remember her from her roles, such as Lorelei Lee, but let’s not forget, as Mark has recounted in his incredible poem, that she brought to life so many characters…but the character who is most endearing for the ones that truly love her is Marilyn Monroe herself – the real human being who loved the simple things in life…she was bright, beautiful, sweet, shy, polite…and she died alone in the middle of an August night.

    That is something that we must remember. The world thought of the beauty onscreen but forgot Marilyn Monroe. And there are still so many that are forgetting about Marilyn…mistreating her even worse in death than in life.

    Mark Bellinghaus, Ernest Cunningham and I are true defenders of Marilyn Monroe’s legacy. We’ve dealt with threats from jealous individuals who’ve tried to stop us from our work and to bring down the hard work already done, especially by Mark and Ernest when it came to the fraudulent Queen Mary Exhibit and all of their findings…which conspiracies are still being discovered. But in the end, no matter how hard they try, our love for Marilyn combined with our sense of truth and justice will prevail above all of the nonsense that they are trying to dish out our way…and they are miserably failing at. Those who know know what I’m referring to.

    Rest in Peace Norma Jeane/Marilyn Monroe. With love and reverence always for you…

    Jennifer J Dickinson
    Proud Member of Team Bellighaus (Mark Bellinghaus, Ernest W. Cunningham, Jennifer J. Dickinson)

  • K. Graf

    Bills have recently been introduced in both New York and California that would give a new “right of publicity” to the estates of dead celebrities — including those who died many years ago.

    The bills would apply such rights to celebrities who died before 1985 and would retroactively allow them to be passed to nonrelatives. Opponents of the legislation say that it could nullify publicity rights that have been in the public domain or held by relatives of hundreds of dead actors and artists, and trigger a flood of lawsuits.

    The force behind this one sided legislation is Curtis Management Group (CMG),who represents the estate of Marilyn Monroe and many others. In May, CMG Worldwide and Marilyn Monroe LLC lost a legal battle in 2 district courts to retain the rights for Marilyn Monroe.

    In California, Senate Bill 771 is a wonderful writ of misdirection which claims to protect the publicity property rights against tasteless uses of celebrities images. Oddly, there is no language in the bill that addresses this aspect.

    Given the large sums of money at stake, Monroe’s estate (MMLLC) is not sitting back and hoping that the courts will vindicate its rights when the case is appealed. Instead, it is waging a campaign to circumvent the decisions by enlisting a host of both living celebrities and the heirs of deceased celebrities to support bills that would radically alter rights of publicity laws.

    “MMLLC and CMG fraudulently asserted publicity rights” says a licensing agent who wishes to remain anymous. Apparently, MMLLC and CMG are at significant financial risk now that they will have to account for the tens of millions they have been paid from licensees and businesses.

    The reasons given for this amendment are contrived – there is no justification to take it away from the family members of that celebrity and to give it to the residuary beneficiary under that celebrity’s will.

  • Thank you K. Graf for posting about this important topic. If this bill is passed as is, it will benefit only CMG and MMLLC in the end. It was halted in New York, for those in opposition of it in California, please contact California State Senators in opposition of SB 771

  • Movie Fan

    No right of publicity under either California or Indiana right of publicity statutes passed to Marilyn Monroe’s estate (probated in New York) at the time of her death.

    As for New York law, it does not recognize any common law right of publicity and limits its statutory publicity rights to living persons.

    The legal point in the decisions is thankfully very simple. The decision handed down by both district judges stands for the simple proposition that there are no publicity rights for Monroe because the Right of Publicity Act was introduced after her death (in 1962).
    An individual cannot pass by will a statutory right that did not exist at the time of death.

    A quote from the company that licenses her right of publicity, as reported in the Wall Street Journal Law Blog:
    “Obviously we did not want to see a ruling like this,” says Mark Roesler, the owner of Indianapolis-based CMG Worldwide, which manages the Monroe publicity rights.

    Clearly, the commercial dispute between the parties has a lot to do with the fact that Marilyn Monroe LLC and CMG Worldwide wanted to mustle money from the photographers and others who sought to exploit or use copyright in photos of Monroe.

    CMG is in deep denial, as well as deep s**t.

  • Yes, nicely said movie fan!

  • Madame Lawyer

    Another part is sworn testimony from Anna Strasberg over the years that Marilyn was a domicile of New York State.
    On 4 occasions, she testified that Marilyn lived in New York and the jurisdiction should be New York’s courts. She prevailed each time.

    And most damaging, Strasberg attempted to remove the Freud Center for Children from their share of the estate – Anna cited in that filing that Marilyn Monroe “died on August 5, 1962, domiciled in the City and State of New York.”

    Now Anna’s position has changed in the photographer’s lawsuits. Now that it suits a different agenda, Marilyn was a California domicile, according to Anna. This shows a contempt for the legal system with this mis-representation of the truth.

  • Doug Wyatt

    Monroe’s estate, MMLLC and CMG are faced with the loss of enormous revenues as a result of the decisions in Shaw and Greene cases – in May, MMLLC was stripped of any licensing rights for Marilyn which they have asserted for over 20 years.

    They will make every attempt to effectively overturn these decisions, including an attempt to rewrite the laws.
    Anthony Williams, an attorney, was hired by Marilyn Monroe LLC to lobby for legislation and they have enlisted California Senator Sheila Keuhl as a sponsor.

    The proposed California bill, SB771, is flawed in many respects. Most alarmingly, it would immediately make unlawful uses of a person’s “portrait, name, voice, signature or picture” that are currently legal.

    This bill is an ex post facto law, meaning it has a retroactive force. Some say these are clearly unconstitutional.

  • sasha

    I love her, and that clip from gentlemen prefer blondes always makes me smile 😀

  • Ben Younger

    For many years Anna Strasberg has asserted that she was willed the Right of Publicity. The judge looked over the claim and ruled – she did not. The Right of Publicity did not exist at the time of Marilyn Monroe’s death and The Right Of Publicity was also something that Marilyn Monroe did not specifically bequeath in her will.

    It would seem that Strasberg has some liability for collecting millions on fees and royalties and THAT is why she must attempt to change the laws.

  • I am sorry, but Anna Strasberg committed many, too many crimes to even be credible. She is a bad actress who cries crocodiles tears in court and now her own spawn, her sons are hunting for the Green(e) and want more money. They are disgusting sharks who create lies like a queen bee creates eggs.
    They left Marilyn Monroe’s belongings rotten in a storage and then they sold it off to the highest bidder. When I spoke to Anna Strasberg last March on the phone, she sang bittersweet into my ear that she could not “save” those items and that she has no idea what I am talking about. But that is just another act.
    She is now picking up the new strategy that Mark Roesler and his CMG actually stole from us and our team: PROTECTION OF MARILYN MONROE’S LEGACY
    Well, how can you believe or how would anybody believe the Strasberg’s on that one, when they gave away the chance to save Monroe’s belongings and create a museum a la Frida Kahlo in Mexico City, Mexico.
    Go to my blog site and listen to the interview that I conducted with former and fired by Strasberg licensing lawyer Roger Richman and realize that Anna Strasberg turned the American legend shamefully into a tacky salt & pepper shaker, just because of the $$$$$$$$!!!!!
    Now they are trying to claim to protect her, because they already lost the cases in NYC and CA.
    More though: Anna Strasberg herself supported the biggest exhibition fraud, which I exposed for the first time on this very site (eternal thanks to Eric Olsen!) and she defrauded ca. 70,000 paying people, made hundreds of thousands, based and on a to 99% fake exhibition–and THEN she has the guts to come back to California and is asking the state to change the law, because she wants to line her pockets again, continue the painful abuse and milking a movie star for which she does have not the slightest respect!

    How stupid can a Sheila Kuehl and her entire team be, not to realize that?
    I hope that Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (also in his own interest as a former movie star) will not sign this created bill, fitting the money greedy needs of the Strasberg clan who tempered with Marilyn Monroe’s last will in order to enrich themselves forever!

    I think $50 million to $100 million over the decades is enough! Don’t you agree?

    Especially if you learn, if you know and realize that Strasberg is getting the latest Mercdes limo that is on the market, just for a commercial she gave permission for—ten years ago.

    She literally scammed Marilyn’s last will and she is threatening with lawsuit after lawsuit. Why did she never threaten me? Because I have enough proof to make her look what she really is, what she sees when she looks into a mirror. A joke. A rich one, but a complete joke. Read the Wallstreet Journal article on her (Google it) and realize that she auditioned in her undies in front of grandfather like Lee Strasberg. She did not get the part, but she got him and Marilyn Monroe’s belongings, which she had her mind set on, since 1972 (I have those papers too).

    If Anna Strasberg & her son David Strasberg will win the power back over Marilyn Monroe, (the CMG Worldwide is most likely out of the picture anyhow), I will kiss Marilyn Monroe goodbye and declare her officially lost to the devil: The Strasberg family of pure hate & greed!

  • Marilyn Monroe’s will was the longest probate in history because the Strasberg’s did not have a real document just the hollywood publicity story. I am a biographer and researcher of her real life and her real family, and friends. The Marilyn Monroe Foundation founded by her daughter Nancy Miracle is the only truth about the unprecedented star.

    The Strasbergs took full advantage of the circumstances surrounding her death and stole the monies due her daughter and real family, most of the others just did the same and they fight with the Strasbergs over what is neither theirs nor the strasbergs.

    Now they are fighting over letters held by the nephew of inez melson which were not written by marilyn’s mother, but by frauds paid for by the estate, hired by them after they broke up the marriage of Monroe and Miller and then had her sign over to strasberg to be distributed to those to whom i am devoted the will which she could not because of contracts and wills become public knowledge sign over to her rightful heirs directly. Before the marriage to miller was dissolved she had her will in his name and he, remained friendly with her family and never spoke to strasberg again.

    This has all been shown in court.

  • Marilyn Monroe’s will was the longest probate in history because the Strasberg’s did not have a real document just the hollywood publicity story. I am a biographer and researcher of her real life and her real family, and friends. The Marilyn Monroe Foundation founded by her daughter Nancy Miracle is the only truth about the unprecedented star.

    The Strasbergs took full advantage of the circumstances surrounding her death and stole the monies due her daughter and real family, most of the others just did the same and they fight with the Strasbergs over what is neither theirs nor the strasbergs.

    Now they are fighting over letters held by the nephew of inez melson which were not written by marilyn’s mother, but by frauds paid for by the estate, hired by them after they broke up the marriage of Monroe and Miller and then had her sign over to strasberg to be distributed to those to whom i am devoted the will which she could not because of contracts and wills become public knowledge sign over to her rightful heirs directly. Before the marriage to miller was dissolved she had her will in his name and he, remained friendly with her family and never spoke to strasberg again.

    This has all been shown in court.

  • Nancy Miracle Is A Crackpot

    The woman who is spooking around for quite some time on several websites is a total weirdo, a drunk and a delusional loser. She claims MM was Italian and her mother.
    Talk about fucking strange.

    Now she found blogcritics. God help us.

  • Harlow

    What really annoys me is when other people write books about Marilyn. They make up so much fabrications that they tend to believe their own lies. However, there are those “so called” fans on You Tube that apparently love Marilyn, but they put her down with negative remarks. I feel that if they say awful comments, they it to me. Because a true fan will always be loyal. Marilyn is not dead but lives in our hearts. In addition, to the Jayne Mansfield fans who are a bunch of perverts. Perverts who need to know that Marilyn Monroe was the original, because it is Jayne who dislikes Marilyn. Jayne is not a nice person and she’s eccentric and self-absorbed. Jayne Mansfield is remembered as the “Poor Man’s Marilyn Monroe”. HA! HA!

  • ricky ray

    Nancy Maniscalco Miracle is the one who proved that Nancy Cusumano aka Marilyn Monroe was domiciled in New York actually she was domiciled in NYC since she was seven years old.

    The Strasbergs starting with Lee, skipped out on jurisdiction avoiding the law for 45 years, as they used the right to publicity in California, to keep Nancy Miracle from getting to the estate monies which should be hers in the courts of hawaii where she first took the case.

    Then in NYC’s surrogate court Nancy again went and proved that Marilyn was in fact a New York resident and so by the way was her daughter Nancy.
    and that’s why Marilyn made her will up, anyway this goes on and on…..see Nancy Miracle for the only real truth of the life of Nancy Cusumano, aka Marilyn Monroe I have researched and know.

  • Dr. Juliann Mitchell, PhD

    She is indeed immortal.

  • Lu

    Does anyone know if Marilyn and Jayne Mansfield disliked each other? A few photos showing Jayne coming up to Marilyn’s table at a club/restaurant show Marilyn ignoring Jayne.

  • anonomous

    Yes, Nancy Maniscalco Miracle proved in court in two states that her claims are true I saw the documents and Marilyn Monroe was indeed Nancy Cusumano Nancy Maniscalco?s mother.