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Marilyn Monroe Birth Anniversary: Interesting Facts About the Hollywood Icon

On her 93rd birth anniversary, here is a look at the some of the fascinating facts related to the iconic Hollywood actress.

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Updated:June 1, 2019, 1:47 PM IST
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Marilyn Monroe Birth Anniversary: Interesting Facts About the Hollywood Icon
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Born as Norma Jeane Mortenson on June 1, 1926 in Los Angeles, California, Marilyn Monroe overcame a troubled childhood to hold sway over generations and cement her status as a "sex symbol" and cultural icon. Despite her tragic and untimely death in 1962, Monroe remains one of the most enduring stars ever to have graced the screen.

On her 93rd birth anniversary, here is a look at the some of the fascinating facts related to the popular Hollywood actress, ranked as the sixth greatest female star of all time by the American Film Institute.

1. She was born Norma Jeane Mortenson (later baptized as Norma Jeane Baker) as the third child of Gladys Pearl Baker, who developed psychiatric problems and was eventually placed in a mental institution. Monroe never knew her father.

2. Monroe didn't have fond memories of her mother, recounting that she had tried to smother her as a baby, while she was lying in a cradle, using a pillow. She was raised by several foster parents and, for a time, in an orphanage.

3. Monroe signed her first movie contract in 1946 and assumed the screen mane 'Marilyn Monroe' and dyed her hair blonde. Her acting career didn't really take off until a few years later, though.

4. In 1942, she married a fellow worker in an aircraft factory, but they divorced soon. In 1954 she was briefly married to baseball great Joe DiMaggio before marrying playwright Arthur Miller two years later.

5. Tired of the "dumb blonde" roles she was being offered, Monroe moved to New York City to train with legendary acting coach Lee Strasberg at the Actors' Studio.

6. Monroe's pre-performance anxiety is said to be the cause of her legendary tardiness on sets, often infuriating her co-stars and crew.

7. Monroe's 23 movies grossed a total of more than $200 million. She overcame the early "dumb blonde" image with her critically-acclaimed performance in Some Like It Hot (1959).

8. On May 19, 1962, Monroe sang "Happy Birthday, Mr. President" at John F. Kennedy's birthday bash, drawing praise from the 35th president of the United States, who said, "I can now retire from politics after having had 'Happy Birthday' sung to me in such a sweet, wholesome way."

9. Monroe's 'skirt scene' from the Seven Year Itch not only went on to become one of the most iconic movie scenes but also led to her seeking divorce from Joe DiMaggio on grounds of "mental cruelty". DiMaggio had stormed off the sets over what he what he felt was an "exhibitionist" scene.

10. Monroe found it difficult to learn lines, and took 60 takes to deliver the line "It's me, Sugar", in Some Like It Hot.

11. Monroe was named 'The Most Advertised Girl in the World' by the Advertising Association in 1953. American Airlines, Kyron Way Diet Pills, Pabst Beer, Tan-Tan Suntan Lotion and Royal Triton Oil were some of the brands she represented.

12. An avid reader, she had over 400 books in her personal library.

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