‘The star born Norma Jean Mortensen suffered an almost Dickensian childhood of hardship, which culminated in an arranged marriage to a neighbour’s son when she was just 16. But on the silver screen Norma Jean created a glittering, carefree and carnal image that made her Hollywood’s most enduring sex symbol. It is that sensuously hedonistic yet innocent image fans still fall head over heels in love with.’ – John Costello, Irish Independent
‘She brought out a protective impulse in people. And, in my opinion, that is part of her movie magic. She was not a sassy sex symbol who “owned” her sexuality. She did not seem calculating about it. There was always the wide-eyed innocence there, in spite of the body made for lovin’ – and that somehow engendered a protective response in audiences … male AND female – so she was one of those very rare movie creatures: a sex symbol whom men loved and desired, but also whom women respected and looked up to … and I think it had something to do with that fragmented innocence peering out of her radiant face. She seemed unaware of the responses she brought up in men, and she never seemed out for sex – the Marilyn Monroe persona was all about finding love. Her gifts as an actress and comedienne are obvious – but her appeal is still rather complicated, which, I suppose, is why people still obsess over her, and talk about her, and pick her apart.’ – Sheila O’Malley
‘I’m really into quotes, like reading quotes by Dolly Parton and Marilyn Monroe and people like that, and Marilyn Monroe’s got a great quote where she says, “A career is great but you can’t curl up with it on a cold night.” I mean, I’m such a workaholic that I have always put my work before everything.’
Sheridan Smith (a gifted young comic actress whom UK readers will recognise from TV shows like The Royle Family, Two Pints of Lager, Gavin and Stacey) is currently starring in Legally Blonde: The Musicalat London’s Savoy Theatre.
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“Many film historians and film critics have written that Marilyn Monroe’s best comedic work was in the film Some Like It Hot. I would agree with that. By the time she filmed this in 1959 her stardom was burning brightly. Her historic performance in the film has stood time all these years. Plus she looked so ravishing that she melted the screen with her sensuality and beauty. Having said that, any actress who plays “Sugar” (Monroe’s role) in the musical Sugar has a humongous hurdle to overcome. That role in the film is so iconic due to Monroe.”
An interesting look back at the history of Sugar, the stage musical based on Some Like It Hot.