The estate of Marilyn Monroe has defended the casting of Ana de Armas as the Hollywood icon in Netflix’s upcoming biopic Blonde.
The movie will see de Armas star as the 1950s and 1960s’ most famous star, who rose from humble origins before trying her hand as an actor and as a singer, before rising to become one of the ultimate sex symbols. However, after the full-length trailer for Blonde was released last week, many questions were raised about Ana de Armas’s Cuban accent, and how it affects her portrayal of Monroe, who is regarded by some as one of the greatest symbols of the American Dream.
Despite these criticisms, Monroe’s estate has stood by the casting. Speaking to Variety, Mark Rosen, the president of entertainment at Authentic Brands Group (ABG), who owns the Monroe estate, said: “Marilyn Monroe is a singular Hollywood and pop culture icon that transcends generations and history”.
He continued: “Any actor that steps into that role knows they have big shoes to fill. Based on the trailer alone, it looks like Ana was a great casting choice as she captures Marilyn’s glamour, humanity, and vulnerability. We can’t wait to see the film in its entirety!”
It is well known that the director of Blonde, Andrew Dominik, settled on de Armas for the role of Monroe after nearly a decade of searching for the lead role. Reportedly, the likes of Naomi Watts and Jessica Chastain were in line for the project that has been in development since way back in 2010.
“I knew I could do it. Playing Marilyn was groundbreaking, a Cuban playing Marilyn Monroe”, de Armas said after her casting in 2019. “I wanted it so badly. You see that famous photo of her and she is smiling in the moment, but that’s just a slice of what she was really going through at the time.”
The official synopsis for the film reads: “From [Monroe’s] volatile childhood as Norma Jeane, through to her rise to stardom and romantic entanglements, Blonde blurs the lines of fact and fiction to explore the widening split between her public and private selves.”
Blonde premieres on Netflix on September 23.