SHE was the ultimate blonde bombshell of the silver screen in the 1950s. Now, nearly 60 years after she died, Marilyn Monroe is still making money and headlines.


The legend lives on?

The candle has not burned out on Marilyn Monroe’s legend which endures to such an extent that a bidding war is currently underway for a rare image of the star. 


What’s the image?

Sotheby’s auction house in New York is selling what is described as “one of the most revealing and sincere” portraits ever taken of Monroe, captured by the late American portrait photographer, Richard Avedon.


But there are thousands of pictures of Marilyn?

This particular image, taken in New York in 1957, is signed by the photographer and is said to have captured her “inner life” at a time when she was the world’s biggest star. Avedon recalled of the shoot: “For hours she danced and sang and flirted and did ‘Marilyn Monroe’. And then there was the inevitable drop. And when the night was over and the white wine was over and the dancing was over, she sat in the corner like a child, with everything gone.”


It’s expected to sell for six-figures?

The top bid is currently at $75,000, with expectations it will reach - if not surpass - $100,000 before it closes on Wednesday.


She died in 1962?

She died at the age of 36 from a barbiturate overdose, having been a top-billed actress for around a decade, before her psychological and substance abuse issues led to major Hollywood studios distancing themselves from her.



Her pop culture icon status endures - her official Facebook account managed by her estate has 13.5 million followers. And you can get any product imaginable with her image featured, from duvet covers to T-shirts.


Who benefits?

With no family of her own, she left the bulk of her estate to her acting coach, Lee Strasberg. When he died in 1982, his second wife, Anna, inherited the estate and hired a company to license Monroe products. The estate is now run by a branding group.


New movie?

Blonde, is due to air on Netflix later this year starring Ana de Armas as Monroe in what is described as "a fictionalised chronicle of the inner life of Marilyn”.


Meanwhile, in Florida?

A 26ft tall statue, Forever Marilyn, features the scene from The Seven Year Itch where her dress blows up as she stands on a subway grate. It is due to go on permanent display in Palm Springs later this month.



Some residents are not happy. Scott Slaeem, director of marketing with the Palm Springs Art Museum, said “It’s a somewhat sexualised representation of Marilyn Monroe” and “the way it’s going to be placed as people exit the front of our museum, they’re going to be staring at her panty clad backside - it just does not seem appropriate”. A hearing is set to be held on Friday to determine the statue’s fate.