VANITYFAIR.COM – Fine-art fashion photographer Milton H. Greene captured some of the greatest stars of the 1950s and 1960s in his enduring portraits, including Grace Kelly, Elizabeth Taylor, Cary Grant, Sophia Loren, Audrey Hepburn, and Paul Newman. But it was Greene’s portraits of Marilyn Monroe—his muse, friend, onetime roommate, and professional collaborator—for which he is most famous.

The two met in 1953—the same year Monroe appeared on-screen in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes—when Greene photographed the bombshell for Look magazine. Photographer and subject bonded, and their relationship over the next few years yielded one production company (Marilyn Monroe Productions, whose titles include The Prince and the Showgirl), a memoir, and over 50 photo sessions.

Beginning July 16, the Morrison Hotel Gallery at the Sunset Marquis Hotel will display some of Greene’s never-before-seen photos from these sessions in its “Some Like It Hot” exhibit. The presentation will also feature 16-mm-film footage (previewed above), showing Monroe in rare and relaxed form—mostly out of the spotlight. Among the moments Greene captured: a cheerful Monroe kissing her third husband, Arthur Miller, and greeting guests at the couple’s 1956 wedding reception; Monroe performing a musical number in the 1956 romantic comedy Bus Stop; and the beauty preening between the sheets for an intimate photo shoot.

In a statement to Vanity Fair, Joshua Greene said of his father’s work, “There was an elegance to the simplicity of the sessions. Milton was not afraid to be vulnerable with his subjects, which created confidence and trust between them.”

Photographer and Morrison Hotel Gallery co-owner Timothy White added of Greene and Monroe, “They spent a lot of time together and she often ran to Milton and his family for an escape from the pressures of Hollywood. With that trust came the access and opportunity for Milton to be with her and to photograph her freely. He became a trusted confidant who always had his still and movie camera with him as he documented her life.”

“Seeing this film footage for the first time gives you the chills,” continues White. “They’re like home movies, yet one of the biggest stars of our time has obviously let her guard down and allows Milton to film her most playful, private, and important moments in her life. . . . It’s a window into something we’ve never before seen . . . but always wanted to.”

The “Some Like It Hot” exhibit will continue through July 24.

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HUNGRYFOREVER.COM – Some Like It Hot is considered one of the best classic comedy films of all times, with an enticing combination of Marilyn Monroe, Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon dressed in drag, some great music and a mob gang which just can’t cut a break. Marilyn Monroe, with her glamour enraptures the audience; remember that scene when she shakes up a Manhattan in a hot water bottle?

The Manhattan
It’s that scene that began our ongoing fascination with The Manhattan, a traditional cocktail made with whiskey, sweet vermouth and bitters. Popular whiskeys to make it include rye, blended whiskey and bourbon- which is what Monroe uses to make her Manhattan.

The Manhattan is one of the six basic drinks in David Embury’s The Fine Art of Mixing Drinks, a classic mixology book.

Serve this Manhattan as a pre-dinner drink or enjoy some while you watch Some Like It Hot if you haven’t already.


2 oz bourbon
1 ox Italian sweet vermouth
2 dashes Angostura bitters

Combine all the ingredients in a shaker.
Strain into a chilled cocktail glass and enjoy.


EW.COM – Gloria Steinem doesn’t walk out of movies — but she made an exception to that personal rule when she saw Marilyn Monroe in 1953’s Gentlemen Prefer Blondes.

“I was embarrassed by her,” the feminist icon says in an exclusive clip from In Their Own Words: The American Masters Digital Archive, which spotlights previously unreleased interviews originally filmed for the American Masters documentary series. “Because she was a joke, she was vulnerable, she was so eager for approval. She was all the things that I feared most being as a teenage girl. And ultimately, I walked out.”

Monroe went on to star in multiple other films like 1955’s The Seven Year Itch and 1959’s Some Like It Hot before dying of an overdose in 1962. Steinem says it wasn’t until after the actress’ death that she started to question why she felt the way she did when watching Monroe play a bubbly blonde on the big screen.

“If the artificiality, the role, the stereotype, the sex goddess, is what you are mostly rewarded for, it’s extremely difficult to let it go,” Steinem says. “You have very little assurance that you’re going to be loved and salaried as your real self, as your unique, underneath self … What the women’s movement has done is to allow women to become each others’ mothers and to support and model and hope and praise and love each other enough so that we can begin to repair the early damage. We wonder, all of us, if we could not have saved Marilyn’s life.”

See the full clip below, and see more from the In Their Own Words American Masters digital archive here.

HUFFINGTONPOST.COM – In 1945, Andre de Dienes was the first professional photographer to work with Monroe when she was known simply as Norma Jeane.

It sounds like the beginnings of a mid-century romance novel: Once upon a time in 1945, Transylvanian-born photographer Andre de Dienes was looking for a muse. He had briefly moved to Hollywood from New York City in search of a model willing to pose for his experimental nude projects. And it was only after many unsuccessful calls to modeling agencies that a girl named Norma Jeane Baker walked into his life.

Baker had reportedly been camping out at Blue Book Modeling Agency’s office, laser-focused on jump-starting a career in Hollywood, so they sent her over. A mere 19 years old, Baker was described by de Dienes in a memoir as a “miracle” that happened to him and a “sexy looking angel.” As predictable as a romance novel, he fell in love with her at first sight. So instead of asking her to pose nude, de Dienes invited Norma (whom he’d been told was married, but separated from her husband) on a five-week trip through California, Nevada, Arizona and Oregon, that would — of course — end in an engagement.

So the rest of the story goes, de Dienes returned to New York after that first trip, with hopes of continuing their relationship. Eventually, though, he found out that Baker had rebranded herself as Marilyn Monroe — and was intent on remaining a single actress. The engagement ended. Nevertheless, in 1946, de Dienes once again asked Monroe to travel with him, this time to a beach in Malibu to take photos for a book of poetry and philosophy. She agreed.

Fast forward three years, and Monroe was well on her way to becoming a celebrity. During a visit to New York, she got in touch with de Dienes, leading to a photo shoot on Tobay Beach on Long Island. In her 20s, de Dienes described her as “a magnificent, elegant young woman, sophisticated like [he had] never seen her before,” yet his photos tended to portray the former Norma Jeane as a casual beachgoer, hair wind-blown and face perpetually angelic. They would shoot together for the last time in 1953, in a dark valley in Beverly Hills, working off the light of de Dienes’ headlights.

Monroe died in 1962, still allegedly in touch with de Dienes, though she’d remarried and had been involved with other men since they met.

Their story is a charming one, particularly when some of the more unforgiving details of their relationship are omitted. According to de Dienes’ own account of that first trip, Monroe slept in the back of his modified Buick, in a space dubbed her “little cage.” “Norma Jeane laughed like crazy when I told her she would become my little slave and prisoner,” de Dienes darkly recounted in his memoir, “that I might even buy a long thin chain to attach one end of to her ankle and the other end to the car!” It was later rumored that de Dienes’ anger got in the way of their relationship.

“Always thinking of his early photographs as the turning point in her career, in 1960 he sent her two letters berating her for never acknowledging him for launching her to to fame,” Steven Kasher Gallery, the gallery hosting “Andre de Dienes: Marilyn and California Girls“ this month and next, wrote in an exhibition description. “It is difficult to say if it was the fact that she never credited him for her success which upset him or if his anger was the result of her continued rejection of his affection.”

Later in life, de Dienes, who published over 20 books of nude photos over his career, lived like a recluse. Many of his photos of Monroe remained hidden in his garage for decades until his wife Shirley T. Ellis de Dienes, a former model who posed nude for her husband, discovered the stash of prints five years after his 1985 death. Thanks to Shirley and author Steve Crist, the collection of rare images of Monroe are now on view at Steven Kasher Gallery, giving viewers a glimpse into one of the actresses’ first relationships in Hollywood.

While there’s no point in crediting de Dienes for Monroe’s fame — she, extremely driven and unafraid, was the key to her own success — it’s interesting to fathom what her life would have been like without that first encounter with a lone Austro-Hungarian photographer.

“Andre de Dienes: Marilyn and California Girls” is on view at Steven Kasher Gallery from June 9 to July 30, 2016. The exhibition features more than 50 lifetime prints from de Dienes’ two most famous series, “Marilyn Monroe” and “California nudes.”

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VANITYFAIR.COM – Today, June 1, 2016, would have been Marilyn Monroe’s birthday. The iconic star, who was born Norma Jean Mortenson, burned brightly during her short life. She started her career as a model before transitioning into acting. She made unforgettable turns in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, The Seven Year Itch, and Some Like It Hot. And at the height of her fame, she defined Hollywood glamour and charisma for an entire generation.

When she passed away in 1962 at the age of 36, Monroe left behind a complicated legacy. During her life, she carefully cultivated and controlled her image; even as behind closed doors, she struggled with mental illness and addiction. The media followed her every move, and her marriages to baseball player Joe DiMaggio and playwright Arthur Miller were highly publicized.

To mark Monroe’s 90th birthday, we’ve collected several of Vanity Fair’s in-depth portrayals of the complicated, captivating star. Happy birthday, Ms. Monroe.

Look through “The Lost Photographs: Marilyn Monroe,” which capture the actress in between takes on film sets. The pictures were taken by her makeup artist, business partner, and close friends.

“The Mentor and the Movie Star chronicles the close relationship between Monroe and her father figure, Lee Strasberg, the director of the Actors Studio, to whom she left her belongings after her death. When Strasberg then left his daughter, Susan, out of his will, which included many of Monroe’s belongings, it led to the breakdown of the Strasberg family.

In “The Things She Left Behind,” author Sam Kashner offers a detailed remembrance of Monroe’s final moments, and the battle her estate faced for the control of her image following her untimely death.

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