Dougray Scott on Playing Arthur Miller

Fan art, Dougray Scott at right

Actor Dougray Scott (Ripley’s Game, Desperate Housewives) will play Arthur Miller in the forthcoming movie, My Week With Marilyn. It will be interesting to see how Miller is portrayed, as Colin Clark was not very sympathetic to him in his memoir, on which the film is based.

“Arthur Miller is also an iconic figure. You have to forget the expectations of other people. He was already established by the time he met Marilyn Monroe and was one of the greatest playwrights of the 20th century. It was great to be able to play him as well. I knew I wanted to be an actor when I read his play, Death Of A Salesman, at school. My dad was a salesman and it gave me a way to get out of my skin.”

Dougray Scott, Daily Record

Bus Stop: ‘A Hopper Painting With Dialogue’

The New Vic production of William Inge’s Bus Stop, now showing in Newcastle-Under-Lyme, gets a five-star, rave review from Alfred Hickling in today’s Guardian.

“Inge’s structure is simplicity itself … But there is something beguiling about this forlorn slice of Americana, which meditates on the distances between towns and the distances between people, like an Edward Hopper painting with dialogue … Louise Dylan is supremely demure as his reluctant beau, a nightclub singer so little exposed to daylight her lips look like a June bug on a field of snow.”

Marilyn at the Komedia, Brighton

Brighton’s very own MM lookalike, Laura Nixon, comes to the Komedia for Alive and Swinging on Sunday, February 27th. Dinner at 6.30pm (optional), show begins at 8. Tickets from £15.

“Marilyn Monroe is finding heaven a bore, no drinking smoking or sex, and worst of all, no swinging music. She returns to earth for one more night of fun, bringing old showbiz fling Frank Sinatra, and Las Vegas legend Elvis Presley.

Join the three superstars, special guests and plenty of swing as they sing and dance away their final night on Earth, until the voice of god finds them missing and demands they return to Heaven.

Dinner, Show and Dance!”

Alive & Swinging Website

Facebook Group

Mad About Marilyn: ‘Fragments’

I’m a little late in posting this. My review of Fragments, last year’s collection of Marilyn Monroe’s personal writing (which you can also read here), has been published in the December 2010 issue of Mad About Marilyn magazine.

It is an outstanding edition, also featuring an article comparing Marilyn with her peer, actress Kim Stanley, who played Cherie in the original Broadway production of Bus Stop, and a character based on MM in the 1957 movie, The Goddess; and a fascinating interview with Marilyn herself from 1954, in which she lists her most-admired men (including then-husband Joe DiMaggio, and future beau, Arthur Miller.)

As always, if you would like to join the Mad About Marilyn Fan Club, please email Emma: emmadowning@blueyonder.co.uk

Bathing Beauty in the Snow

Photo by Greg Kendall-Ball, taken outside Bogie’s Downtown Deli in Abilene, Texas

“This afternoon, I walked up the street to get some chili for lunch, and spotted this lady smiling back from the window of Bogie’s Downtown restaurant. I wondered, would she be smiling quite as much if she had to endure the 13-degree temperatures the rest of us were experiencing?

With the restaurant’s permission, I placed Miss Monroe on the sidewalk outside. Turns out, she didn’t mind the cold at all. The breeze almost knocked her down a couple of times, like a candle in the wind or something, but nothing really seemed to faze her. I guess this could be called a ‘really environmental portrait.'”

Abilene Reporter-News

Lara Stone as ‘The Girl’ for Red Nose Day

Model Lara Stone imitates Marilyn’s famous pose from The Seven Year Itch to launch this year’s Red Nose Day appeal for Comic Relief.

“I had so much fun being Marilyn Monroe for the day and recreating the iconic shot with a Red Nose twist. It was an honour to be asked to take part.”

This year’s Red Nose Day telethon will be broadcast on BBC1, March 18.

‘The Fireball’ at Warner Archive

Marilyn as Polly in ‘The Fireball’

The Fireball, a Roller Derby movie from 1950, starring Mickey Rooney and Pat O’Brien, and featuring a young Marilyn in a small role, is now available to view via Warner Archive‘s on-demand service.

“I had plotted to watch every Marilyn Monroe film known to man. And I’ve seen a lot. The good, the bad and the downright ugly…Marilyn Monroe is a sophisticated party gal who is in with the ritzy crowd but is titillated by the danger and excitement that comes with watching Roller Derby (it’s like a fancy gal watching a boxing match in a pre-code!).”

Full review at Out of the Past

Preview Marilyn’s scenes on Youtube


Fifty Years Ago…

The Misfits, Marilyn’s last completed movie, was released fifty years ago today. At the time of its release, The Misfits was overshadowed by the death of its star, Clark Gable, and Marilyn’s divorce from Arthur Miller, who had written the part of Roslyn for her. Critical reception was mixed, though The Misfits, an elegaic western, is now considered to be something of a flawed masterpiece. Marilyn herself was deeply disappointed by it, though most agree that ‘Roslyn Tabor’ was one of her finest dramatic performances:

“Marilyn Monroe, the Saint of the Nevada desert. . . She haunts you, you’ll not forget her . . . It is MM that tells the truth in the movie, who accuses, judges, reveals. And it is MM who runs into the middle of the desert and in her helplessness shouts: “You are all dead, you are all dead!”—in the most powerful image of the film—and one doesn’t know if she is saying those words to Gable and [Eli] Wallach or to the whole loveless world. . . There is so much truth in her little details, in her reactions to cruelty, to false manliness, nature, life, death, that she is overpowering, one of the most tragic and contemporary characters of modern cinema.”

Jonas Mekas, ‘The Village Voice’

A tribute to The Misfits, from the Library of America, is posted today at the Reader’s Almanac blog