‘We were asking permission’: Ana de Armas went to Marilyn Monroe’s grave to get permission for ‘Blonde’ despite the film being based on fictional events that tarnish her legacy

The psychological thriller of 2022, Blond, starring Ana de Armas has been the subject of much controversy and discussion over the past few months. With factions equally praising or criticizing Andrew Dominik’s film, each side vocalizes the Cuban actress’ portrayal of the Hollywood icon as either a resounding performance or a tarnishing of Marilyn Monroe’s legacy. As the film now nears its premiere on Netflix, Ana de Armas shares a heartfelt story from before filming Blond.

Ana de Armas plays Marilyn Monroe as a blonde
Ana de Armas portrays Marilyn Monroe in Blond

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The Exploitative Glimpse of Marilyn Monroe’s Legacy

The crew of Blond had set out to portray an unreal representation of Monroe on screen, not just as the famous icon, but as a deeply troubled character whose story extended beyond what meets the eye. They finally succeeded in realizing this vision, but the great creative freedom that presided over the making of Andrew Dominik’s film came with its share of controversy.

Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe in Blonde
Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe in Blond

Also read: ‘Isn’t that her job?’: Ana de Armas gets lambasted for having a Spanish accent in upcoming Marilyn Monroe biopic Blond, Fans ask not to play the race card for a bad accent

Adapted from the novel of the same name by Joyce Carol Oates, Blond ruthlessly breaks down the barrier between reality and fantasy in this candy-colored film. Although fictionalized, the film and its protagonist, Ana de Armas, inherently succeed in forming an impressionistic portrayal of Monroe’s life, rather than sticking to a biographical account of what she was. Consequently, the film now accompanies an NC-17 rating with its outright exploitation of the provocative life of Hollywood icon, Marilyn Monroe.

Marilyn Monroe
Blond explores the life of Marilyn Monroe in fictional detail

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Ana de Armas reveals how she started filming Blond

Before stepping into the shoes of “Blonde Bombshell,” the Netflix film’s cast and crew each signed a card asking for the late actress’s permission. The film, the boldest and most incendiary of all of Monroe’s films to date, doesn’t shy away from expressing the actress’ internalized angst that ultimately led to her mysterious, tragic, and untimely end. Ana de Armas, who gives a stunning performance as Marilyn Monroe, says:

“We got this big card and everyone in the crew wrote him a message. Then we went to the cemetery and put him on his grave. We were kind of asking permission. Everyone felt a huge responsibility and we were very aware of the side of the story we were going to tell – the story of Norma Jeane, the person behind this character, Marilyn Monroe. Who was she really?

Monroe's iconic pose
The film by Ana de Armas, Blonddraws stunning parallels to Monroe’s iconic pose

Also Read: ‘She Captures Marilyn’s Glamor and Vulnerability’: Marilyn Monroe Estate Comes Out to Defend Ana de Armas Amid Violent Accent Backlash, Fans Say It’s Only Because She’s Hispanic

With the film now largely receptive to positive responses, there still remains the problem of Ana de Armas’ accent which has remained a focus of viewers’ concerns throughout the promotional aspect of Blond. However, the imitated on-screen sensationalism overshadows the cultural issue that proved divisive early in the film’s difficult journey. Also, Ana de Armas, Blond also features Adrien Brody as playwright Arthur Miller, Bobby Cannavale as Joe DiMaggio, Julianne Nicholson as Gladys Pearl Baker, and Caspar Phillipson as John F. Kennedy.

Blond premieres on Netflix on September 28, 2022.

Source: Another Magazine

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