First Look: Michelle Williams in MY WEEK WITH MARILYN!

With the passing of Tony Curtis two weeks ago, my mind has recently wondered to 'The Golden Era of Hollywood', and in particular to Marilyn Monroe, the actor's famous love interest in Billy Wilder's seminal romantic comedy 'Some Like It Hot'. It's a little weird to think, especially for people of my generation who never breathed air at the same time as Marilyn did, that she would have been just 86 years old if she were still alive today. A perfectly reasonable age to still have been healthy, and though probably retired now, still conceivably have been acting through the 80's, 90's and 2000's. When I imagine Marilyn, and to a slightly lesser extent Elvis Presley, it's jarring to think they could have lived quite comfortably today. Their names and lives were so iconic but so firmly of a different era that it doesn't sound right to think of them living during the era of the internet, iPod, era, etc. Their lives feel like a lifetime ago. I say all this because I got an email on Friday from Trademark Films and The Weinstein Company informing me that filming had begun that very day in London on British t.v. helmer Simon Curtis' movie 'My Week With Marilyn', a biopic of the Iconic actress starring Michelle Williams as the curvy blonde bombshell. Now for a long time I had Scarlett Johansson, the young twenty-something actress whose media fascination and cultural status would seem more fitting from afar, pegged for a Monroe biopic, but I look at Williams in the first look promo photo above and I'm sold. Johansson might have been more fitting but Michelle Williams is three times the actress. This particular biopic then is centered on the diaries of Colin Clark, a young assistant on the set of 'The Prince And The Showgirl', a mid 1950's picture that starred Monroe but is notorious for the problems between her and the film's co-star, producer and director Laurence Oliver (played in the film, fittingly because of his Shakespearean routes, by Kenneth Branagh). I've never read the diary so I'm unaware of the Monroe/Oliver feud, but I'm kinda glad about this so I can experience the story for the first time with the film. Brit up-and-comer Eddie Redmayne plays Colin Clark, the author of the diary and whose parents were friends with Oliver that won him the assistant job on the movie, and whose week with Marilyn make up the film. Julia Ormond (as Vivien Leigh, Oliver's then wife) and Dougary Scott (playwright Arthur Miller, Monroe's then wife) also have meaty parts. Ormond is a new addition to the cast having replaced Catherine Zeta Jones who had to pull out due to the ill-health of Michael Douglas. Co-starring with them are Emma Watson (as a costume designer), Judi Dench (Dame Sybil Thorndike), Dominic Cooper (producer Milton Greene) and Derek Jacobi & Toby Jones in supporting roles. Great cast, and I guess you could view this as being this year's 'Me And Orson Welles', though let's pray for no Zac Efron/Claire Danes rom-com emphasis from Redmayne and Watson - clearly the selling point here is Williams (Monroe) and Branagh (Oliver). I would also be remiss if I didn't point out that 'The Assassination of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford' director Andrew Dominik is also working on his own Monroe biopic, titled 'Blonde', with Naomi Watts expected to star.
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Matt Holmes is the co-founder of What Culture, formerly known as Obsessed With Film. He has been blogging about pop culture and entertainment since 2006 and has written over 10,000 articles.