East Meets West: Marilyn and Choi Eun-Hee

Marilyn with Korean film star Choi-Eun-Hee, 1954

This photograph of Marilyn with another screen beauty, Choi Eun-hee, during her trip to Korea in 1954, is featured at the Korean Film Museum (KOFA.)

Born in 1926, the same year as Marilyn, Choi Eun-hee began her movie career in 1947 with A New Oath, and soon became one of Korea’s biggest stars. From 1955-85, she appeared in 81 films, and was named Best Actress at the Moscow International Film Festival for her role in Sogum.

However, in 1978, Choi Eun-hee and her former husband, film director Shin Sang-ok, were kidnapped to North Korea by order of future dictator Kin Jong-il, who forced them to remarry and produce propaganda for his cause.

In 1986, Choi Eun-hee and Shin Sang-ok escaped during a state trip to Vienna. They later published an account of their experiences together.