Other films which Marilyn refused
to make for Fox were "Can Can", "Size 12", and
"The Stripper". The latter was based on a play by William Inge,
who wrote "Bus Stop" and tells the story of a small town girl
who wins a beauty contest and leaves home for a Hollywood screen test.
She fails the test and ends up stripping for a living. Joanne Woodward
took over the part.
Some of the films which Marilyn
wanted to do and never got the chance included "Breakfast At
Tiffany's" which had a part specially written for Marilyn—a part
she was interested in filming. But it was made at Paramount with Audrey
Hepburn in the starring role.
Marilyn also wanted to appear as
the dizzy blonde in "Guys and Dolls" with Marlon Brando and
Frank Sinatra, but the comedy role went to Vivienne Blaine who had
played the part in the Broadway show.
Marilyn had hoped to star in the
1959 movie "Middle Of The Night", but the film was produced by
Columbia and the part went to Kim Novak. Interestingly, Harry Cohn, head
of Columbia had specifically ordered his studio to discover another
Marilyn. They found beauty queen Marilyn Novak, then changed her first
name to Kim. Kim also starred in the third film version of Somerset
Maugham's "Of Human Bondage". Director Henry Hathaway had
wanted Marilyn as his lead from the very beginning, but by the time the
film eventually went into production, she had died.
Another movie Marilyn wished to
appear in was "Pillow Talk" where she would have played
opposite Rock Hudson, but Doris Day was cast instead.
Billy Wilder, who had directed
Marilyn in "The Seven Year Itch" and Some Like It Hot",
realized her talent as a comedienne, despite the on-off feuds the two of
them had, and it was widely rumored that he had offered her the title
role in "Irma La Douce". However, the movie was made after her
death in 1963 with Shirley MacLaine as Irma.
Had Marilyn and Wilder hit it off
better, she might have ended up with the lead in "The
Apartment" with Jack Lemmon, which also went to Shirley MacLaine.
Certainly, a Billy Wilder-Marilyn
Monroe partnership on "The Apartment" and "Irma La Douce"
and the other, more significant films would have left a stronger Monroe
film heritage. A sad case of what-might-have-been.
1 | 2