Blonde Netflix fact and fiction

How much of Netflix’s Marilyn Monroe movie Blonde really happened?

Fans have called some of the fabrications exploitative

Content warning: Mention of rape and abuse

Netflix’s new Marilyn Monroe drama Blonde has dropped on Netflix and it controversially shows some of the most traumatic moments of the glamorous star’s life and depicts her Hollywood rise and fall. The movie is based on the novel of the same from by Joyce Carol Oates which depicts a fictionalised version of Marilyn Monroe’s life. Many fans have called the movie a disrespect to Monroe’s legacy, with some calling out parts that were unnecessarily made up.

With some of Blonde’s plotlines being loosely based on Marilyn Monroe’s life, how much is fact and fiction in the Netflix film, Blonde?

How did Marilyn Monroe die?

In the Netflix movie, Monroe dies at home of a barbiturate overdose. This is largely accepted as to what happened to the Hollywood star in 1962. Coroner Theodore J. Curphey said he could give a “presumptive opinion” that her death was due to a drug overdose. Her death was later ruled as a suicide.

Was Marilyn Monroe raped by JFK?

One moment in Blonde viewers have branded as “disgusting” is one that deals with the alleged affair between Marilyn Monroe and John F. Kennedy. In the 1960s, there were rumours the two had an affair and to this day there is no evidence of it.

However, in the film, Monroe is drugged and taken to a character called “the President” who looks very similar to JFK, so much so the actor previously played him in Jackie. In the movie, the character forces Monroe to perform a sexual act on him. There is no report of this incident ever taking place, and viewers have called it “exploitation” of Monroe’s legacy and her life story.

via Netflix

Scott Fortner, a Marilyn Monroe historian and collector said the scene between JFK and Marilyn is “definitely fiction”. He said: “Opinions vary widely on the actual relationship between the two. Of course, there have been rumours for years, but what we think we know that Marilyn and JFK met on no more than four occasions between October 1961 and August 1962.”

Did Marilyn Monroe’s mother try to drown her in a bathtub?

The film follows young Marilyn Monroe and her traumatic childhood with her mother. During Blonde, Monroe’s mother tries to drown her in a bathtub and Marilyn escapes shortly after. There is no evidence to suggest Monroe’s mother ever tried to drown her daughter. But Marilyn Monroe’s former husband Arthur Miller said in an interview that Monroe told him her mother had threatened her life on three occasions.

via Netflix

Did Joe DiMaggio ever hit Marilyn Monroe?

In the movie, Marilyn Monroe is in a relationship with someone called “The Ex-Athlete” who many have deduced as being former baseball player, Joe DiMaggio. There are multiple rumours from witnesses seeing DiMaggio “slap” Monroe, but they have never been verified.

Blonde Netflix fact and fiction

via Netflix

Was Marilyn Monroe in a ‘throuple’ with Charlie Chaplin Jr and Edward G. Robinson Jr?

One moment in the Netflix film Blonde viewers are unsure are being fact or fiction is the relationship between Monroe and Charlie Chaplin Jr and Edward G. Robinson Jr. Blonde shows Marilyn meeting two aspiring actors who happen to be the sons of two famous fathers, both of whom are trying to stop living in the shadow of their fathers.

The movie depicts the three of them being in a three-way relationship and they remain friends throughout her life. However, most of this is pure fabrication. Chaplin nor Robinson were known to be in a relationship with each other and there was no evidence to suggest Robinson and Monroe were even friends.

Blonde Netflix fact and fiction

via Netflix

However, Chaplin confirmed in his memoir that he had a brief relationship with Marilyn Monroe, who went by the name Norma Jean Dougherty in the 40s.

Blonde is available now on Netflix. For all the latest Netflix news, drops, quizzes and memes like The Holy Church of Netflix on Facebook.

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Featured image credit via Netflix.