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Marilyn Monroe

  • I had the radio on.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • when asked if she really had nothing on in the calendar photograph, in Time ()
  • Chanel No. 5.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • on being asked what she wore in bed, in Pete Martin, Will Acting Spoil Marilyn Monroe? ()
  • Sometimes it makes you a little sad because you'd like to meet somebody kind of on face value. It's nice to be included in people's fantasies but you also like to be accepted for your own sake.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • ... a struggle with shyness is in every actor more than anyone can imagine.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • An actor is not a machine ... Like any creative human being, I would like a bit more control so that it would be a little easier for me when the director says, 'One tear, right now,' that one tear would pop out. But once there came two tears because I thought, 'How dare he?'

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • An actor is supposed to be a sensitive instrument. Isaac Stern takes good care of his violin. What if everybody jumped on his violin?

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • You're always running into people's unconscious.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • I never quite understood it — this sex symbol. ... That's the trouble, a sex symbol becomes a thing. I just hate to be a thing.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • We are all born sexual creatures, thank God, but it's a pity so many people despise and crush this natural gift. Art, real art, comes from it ...

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • Fame to me certainly is only a temporary and a partial happiness ... fame is not really for a daily diet, that's not what fulfills you. It warms you a bit but the warming is temporary. It's like caviar, you know — it's good to have caviar but not when you have to have it every meal and every day.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • I used to get the feeling, and sometimes I still get it, that sometimes I was fooling somebody. I don't know who or what — maybe myself.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • Fame will go by and, so long, I've had you, fame. If it goes by, I've always known it was fickle. So at least it's something I experienced, but that's not where I live.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • We human beings are strange creatures and still reserve the right to think for ourselves.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • ...when you're famous you kind of run into human nature in a raw kind of way. It stirs up envy, fame does. People ... feel fame gives them some kind of privilege to walk up to you and say anything to you, you know, of any kind of nature — and it won't hurt your feelings — like it's happening to your clothing.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • Couldn't we end this interview with what I really want to say? That what the world really needs is a real feeling of kinship — everybody: stars, laborers, Negroes, Jews, Arabs. We are all brothers. If we could end this article saying just that, we'd get down to what we should all be talking about. Please don't make me a joke. End the interview with what I believe.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Patricia Newcomb interview, Life ()
  • I've been on a calendar, but never on time.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Look ()
  • Goethe said, 'Talent is developed in privacy,' you know? ... There is a need for aloneness which I don't think most people realize for an actor. It's almost having certain kinds of secrets for yourself that you'll let the whole world in on only for a moment, when you're acting.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • An actress is not a machine, but they treat you like one. A money machine.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • "Marilyn: The Woman Who Died Too Soon," Ms. ()
  • Hollywood's a place where they'll pay you a thousand dollars for a kiss, and fifty cents for your soul.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in John Robert Colombo, Popcorn in Paradise ()
  • If I am a star, it was the people who made me one — not the studio, but the people.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • 1961, in Donald Spoto, Marilyn Monroe ()
  • Being a movie star was never as much fun as dreaming of being one.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Herb Boyd, Seductive Sayings: Marilyn Monroe Her Own Words ()
  • I'm selfish, impatient and a little insecure. I make mistakes, I am out of control and at times hard to handle. But if you can't handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don't deserve me at my best.

    • Marilyn Monroe
  • ... I don't care about the money. I just want to be wonderful.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • In Hollywood, a girl's virtue is much less important than her hair-do.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Herb Boyd, Seductive Sayings: Marilyn Monroe Her Own Words ()
  • A smart girl is one who knows how to play tennis, golf, piano — and dumb.

    • Marilyn Monroe
  • I don't mind this being a man's world — as long as I can be a woman in it.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Herb Boyd, Seductive Sayings: Marilyn Monroe Her Own Words ()
  • Husbands are chiefly good as lovers when they are betraying their wives.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Herb Boyd, Seductive Sayings: Marilyn Monroe Her Own Words ()
  • I want to grow old without face lifts. They take the life out of a face, the character. I want to have the courage to be loyal to the face I've made.

    • Marilyn Monroe
  • Ever notice that what the hell is always the right decision?

    • Marilyn Monroe
  • My work is the only ground I've ever had to stand on.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Alan Levy, "A Good Long Look at Myself," Redbook ()
  • A sweater is like life, you get nothing out of it that you don't put into it!

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Adele Whitely Fletcher, "So That the Memory of Marilyn Will Linger On," Photoplay ()
  • I've never deliberately done anything about the way I walk. People say I walk all wiggly and wobbly. I don't know what they mean. I use walking just to get me around.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • I sit down the way I feel.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • ... if I'm going to be a symbol of something, I'd rather have it sex than some of the other things they've got symbols for today.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Richard Meryman, "Marilyn Lets Her Hair Down About Being Famous," Life ()
  • I'm trying to find myself as a person. Sometime that's not easy to do. Millions of people live their entire lives without finding themselves. But it is something I must do.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Edward Wagenknecht, "Rosemary for Remembrance," Marilyn Monroe, A Composite View ()
  • Doing a scene is like opening a bottle. If it doesn't open one way, try another — perhaps even give it up for another bottle?

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • 1955, in Donald Spoto, Marilyn Monroe ()
  • ... our marriage was a sort of crazy, difficult friendship with sexual privileges. Later I learned that's what marriages often are.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • on Joe DiMaggio, in Donald Spoto, Marilyn Monroe ()
  • I always felt I was a nobody, and the only way for me to be somebody was to be — well, somebody else. Which is probably why I wanted to act.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Donald Spoto, Marilyn Monroe ()
  • Those who know me better, know better.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Donald Spoto, Marilyn Monroe ()
  • In leaving Hollywood and coming to New York, I feel I can be more myself. After all, if I can't be myself, what's the good of being anything at all?

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • 1954, in Donald Spoto, Marilyn Monroe ()
  • Squeezing yourself to ooze out the last ounce of sex allure is terribly hard. I'd like to do roles like Julie in Bury the Dead, Gretchen in Faust and Teresa in Cradle Song.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • 1953, in Donald Spoto, Marilyn Monroe ()
  • When you're a failure in Hollywood — that's like starving to death outside a banquet hall with the smells of filet mignon driving you crazy.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Herb Boyd, Seductive Sayings: Marilyn Monroe Her Own Words ()
  • The worst thing that happens to people when they dress up and go to a party is that they leave their real selves at home.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Herb Boyd, Seductive Sayings: Marilyn Monroe Her Own Words ()
  • I read poetry to save time.

    • Marilyn Monroe
  • I knew how third-rate I was. I could actually feel my lack of talent, as if it were cheap clothes I was wearing inside, But, my God, how I wanted to learn, to change, to improve! I didn't want anything else. Not men, not money, not love, but the ability to act.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Randall Riese and Neal Hitchens, The Unabridged Marilyn: Her Life From A to Z ()
  • ... if a star or studio chief or any other great movie personages find themselves sitting among a lot of nobodies, they get frightened — as if somebody was trying to demote them.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Randall Riese and Neal Hitchens, The Unabridged Marilyn: Her Life From A to Z ()
  • Just because you fail once, doesn't mean you're failing at everything. Keep trying, hold on, and always trust yourself, because if you don't, who will ... ?

    • Marilyn Monroe
  • My mother ... lives in a sanitarium in California. And that's my father [pointing to picture of Abraham Lincoln]. Well, actually, I don't know who my father is. My mother never told me. Oh, Lena, I wish I had a father.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Lena Pepitone and William Stadiem, Marilyn Monroe: Private and Confidential ()
  • My mother was in a crazy house, and her mother was in a crazy house. Oh, God, I don't want to end up like that.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Lena Pepitone and William Stadiem, Marilyn Monroe: Private and Confidential ()
  • Yes, there was something special about me, and I knew what it was. I was the kind of girl they found dead in a hall bedroom with an empty bottle of sleeping pills in her hand.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • with Ben Hecht, My Story ()
  • Creativity has got to start with humanity and when you're a human being, you feel, you suffer.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Life ()
  • First, I'm trying to prove to myself that I'm a person. Then maybe I'll convince myself that I'm an actress.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Gloria Steinem, "The Woman Who Died Too Soon," Ms. ()
  • Tolerance is one of the most important things in the world.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Gloria Steinem, "The Woman Who Died Too Soon," Ms. ()
  • I restore myself when I'm alone. A career is born in public — talent in privacy.

    • Marilyn Monroe,
    • in Gloria Steinem, "The Woman Who Died Too Soon," Ms. ()

Marilyn Monroe, U.S. actor

(1936 - 1962)

Name: Norma Jeane Mortenson Baker Dougherty DiMaggio Miller. Her birth certificate reads Norma Jeane Mortenson. Caveat: Marilyn Monroe apparently read widely, and she kept notebooks of her own thoughts and ideas, but quoting her often depends on interviews, second-hand quotations, and possibly unreliable attributions. The unsourced quotes above seem dubious, although they have appeared in print somewhere, sometime.