Marilyn Monroe, Scarlett Johansson, Drag Queens and Posters

Then name alone instantly brings to mind the image of a slightly ditzy, smolderingly sexy, blond bombshell. Whether you’re a pop singer like Madonna, an up and coming drag queen, or an A-list celebrity working for Dolce & Gabbana, Marilyn has inspired countless women (and not a few men) for decades.

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Two posters from our increasingly large collection of Marilyn Monroe ephemera.

From various Internet sources, we gleaned that “In 1926 a girl was born in the charity ward at the Los Angeles County Hospital who would become one of the most celebrated and enduring icons of all time – Marilyn Monroe. Norma Jeane Mortenson’s childhood was volatile as she was passed from family members to family friends and frequently stayed in orphanages as a result of her mother’s mental health. To avoid another orphanage stay a family friend orchestrated a marriage proposal when she was sixteen years old. When her husband was sent to the Pacific with the merchant marine, Monroe went to work in a munitions factory in Burbank, California, where she was discovered by a photographer. By the time her husband returned in 1946, Monroe had a successful career as a model, and had changed her name to Marilyn Monroe in preparation for an acting career. She dreamt of becoming an actress like Jean Harlow and Lana Turner.

MarilynMonroe’s marriage to Dougherty fizzled out as she focused more on her career. The couple divorced in 1946—the same year that Monroe signed her first movie contract. With the movie contract came a new name and image; she began calling herself “Marilyn Monroe” and dyed her hair blonde. But her acting career didn’t really take off until the 1950s. Her small part in John Huston’s crime drama The Asphalt Jungle (1950) garnered her a lot of attention. That same year, she impressed audiences and critics alike with her performance as Claudia Caswell in All About Eve, starring Bette Davis. The rest, as they say is history. (if you’d like to see images from Marilyn’s last interview, you can do so here.)

Marilyn-Monroe-IconOne of our consignors (we’ll call him Andrew Paradise), is fascinated by Marilyn: every batch of posters that he brings us to sell, and there are many, are populated with Marilyn film posters in German, French, Dutch and yes, English. There are Warhol-inspired Marilyn posters, classic Marilyn lobby cards, Marilyn posters with Rock Hudson, Marilyn Bus Stop posters… in short, something for everyone.

Which is a good thing, as people are still as fascinated by Marilyn as they were 50 years ago. The Huffington Post wrote an article on the premise of re-imaging Marilyn Monroe just today, and recently a website posted images of modern media personalities and their Marilyn-inspired looks. Her appeal, it seems, is timeless

Marilyn-Monroe1Marilyn was not completely unaware of her impact of those around her. In this clip, she does a pretty good job of making fun of herself…and her sex appeal (visit this link, and go to 15:47) …

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