Is Blonde a True Story?

share to other networks share to twitter share to facebook
Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe in Blonde
Credit: Netflix

Ana de Armas is back for a role that is all too familiar-- the ever iconic Marilyn Monroe in Blonde. Although the film is a story about the Hollywood actress' life, it isn't a historically accurate biopic.

The movie, rated NC-17, is based on Joyce Carol Oates' 2000 novel of the same name. Director Andrew Dominik has taken bits out of the book and turned this into a fictionalized tale of Monroe's life in Hollywood.

Advertisement

Here are the burning questions you might have after watching Blonde on Netflix.

Table of Contents

When Does Netflix Blonde Come Out

Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe in Blonde
Credit: Netflix

The 2022 film is already out on the streaming platform. Netflix released the film at 3 am ET on Wednesday, September 28, 2022. Prior to this date, the movie made its premiere at the Venice International Film Festival and was also shown in limited theaters in the US.

Although the movie was released in 2022, the project has actually been in production since 10 years ago. Before Ana de Armas, the leading role was rumored to go to Naomi Watts and Jessica Chastain. The other stars in the cast include Adrien Brody, Bobby Cannavale, Julianne Nicholson, Toby Hus, Caspar Phillipson, and many others.

What is Netflix Blonde About?

Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe in Blonde
Credit: Netflix
Advertisement

From the start, the producers of the show say that this is not a traditional biopic of Marilyn Monroe. But it offers an interesting look into the life of one of Hollywood's most iconic actresses.

The book where the story is based on shares this synopsis:

"The legend of Marilyn Monroe -- aka Norma Jeane Baker -- comes provocatively alive in this powerful tale of Hollywood myth and heartbreaking reality. Marilyn Monroe lives -reborn to tell her untold history; her story of a star created to shine brightest in the Hollywood firmament before her fall to earth. Blonde is a dazzlign fictional portrait of the intricate inner life of the idolized and desired movie star as only the inimitable Joyce Carol Oates could paint it."

Blonde is Brad Pitt's Plan B Entertainment production alongside Dede Gardner, Tracey Landon, Scott Robertson, and Jeremy Kleiner.

Is Blonde a True Story?

Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe in Blonde
Credit: Netflix
Advertisement

As mentioned, the film is a fictionalized story of Monroe's life in Hollywood. The movie is told in a provocative and surreal way that attempts to depict what the famed actress may have encountered before her sudden death.

In an interview with Deadline, director Andrew Dominik said:

"I know an awful lot about Marilyn Monroe now. I've read all the major stuff. There's over a thousand books written about her, and I haven't read a thousand, but I've read all of the big hits. I've read all that stuff, and I've met people that knew her and I've been to most of the places (that you can still get into) where she lived. I've read all the biographies of all the other people that were in her life too so I'm aware of what they think happened in most of the situations in her life."

"And I'm aware of how that's different to the book Blonde. I did all that research and I used very little of it in the movie," he added. "Blonde the book was pretty much the bible for the film."

In another interview with The New Yorker, Oates shared that the film version is "a work of art" and is "not a feel-good movie."

"Many films about Marilyn Monroe are kind of upbeat and have a lot of music and singing. She's very beautiful and sweet. This one is probably closer to what she actually experienced. The last few days of her life were brutal."

What's Marilyn Monroe's Real Name

Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe in Blonde
Credit: Netflix
Advertisement

Marilyn Monroe left a legacy as a sex symbol. However, that is not her real name.

When she was born in June 1, 1926, she was called Norma Jeane Mortenson. But later in her life, she was baptized and given her mother's name: Norma Jeane Baker.

It was when she started acting that Norma Jean changed her name one final time to Marilyn Monroe after her grandmother's last name.

Is Blonde Accurate?

The film is a fictionalized take on Monroe's life. But it does include some tidbits of her personal life. Let's look at what Netflix got right with its portrayal of Marilyn Monroe:

Did JFK Have an Affair With Marilyn Monroe?

Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe in Blonde
Credit: Netflix

This seems to be one of the big questions people always ask about Monroe's life.

In Blonde, Kennedy's Secret Service agents were the ones who brought the actress to the former president's bedroom for a booty call. But this was never confirmed.

Still, there is a lot of gossip that the two had a physical relationship.

Was Marilyn in a Throuple?

Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe in Blonde
Credit: Netflix
Advertisement

The film makes it look like Marilyn was in a three-way relationship with Charlie "Cass" Chaplin Jr. and Edward G. Robinson Jr. In reality, however, neither men were believed to be gay or bisexual. There is also no evidence that suggests Monroe and Robinson were more than just acquaintances.

As for Chaplin, he confirmed in his memoir that he had a relationship with "an attractive, petite, unknown movie actress named Norma Jean Dougherty."

Another thing that was changed in the film was that Robinson called Monroe with the news that Chaplin had died. But the truth to this is that Chaplin outlived Monroe for almost six years.

Did Monroe Have a Miscarriage or an Abortion?

Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe in Blonde
Credit: Netflix

In Blonde, Monroe is shown to have gone through an abortion after breaking up with the two Jrs. She is also said to be pregnant with her husband, playwright Arthur Miller, but had a miscarriage after falling.

Advertisement

While she was married to Miller, Monroe did have a miscarriage in 1956. She also had an ectopic pregnancy in 1957 and another miscarriage in 1958. As for the abortion rumors, there is little evidence to this. But some of her friends have revealed that Monroe has done up to 12 abortions, some of which were performed in back-alley clinics.

How Did Marilyn Monroe Die?

Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe in Blonde
Credit: Netflix

It has been documented that Monroe's cause of death was a drug overdose. But it has also been ruled as a "probable suicide."

The toxicology report revealed that her official cause of death was due to acute barbiturate poisoning. She was found to have taken a lethal amount of Nembutal and chloral hydrate.

Despite the toxicology report, there are a number of conspiracy theories that suggest there was foul play in her death.

Advertisement

Marilyn Monroe died at the age of 36. You can watch the fictionalized biopic, Blonde, which is now streaming on Netflix.


RELATED: Chris Evans Gushes Over Ana De Armas Netflix Film Blonde: "Holy S--t! You’re Going to Win an Oscar for This!’”