Marilyn Makes ‘Merry, Merry’ at Julien’s

An original screenplay for Let’s Make Love was sold for $3,520 at yesterday’s Merry Merry Marilyn event, hosted online at Julien’s Auctions. The 138 page script, dated January 15, 1960) is marked marked ‘Second Revised Shooting Final,’ one colored ‘script change’ page added with a date of 1/19/60. The current owner inherited it from a man named Carl Faso who was a longtime doorman at Marilyn’s Sutton Place apartment at 444 East 57th Street in New York City. Faso claimed that he and Marilyn were friendly and that she herself gave him this script one day as a souvenir. Faso also said that he painted a portrait of the star and gifted it to her directly.  Interestingly, one of the four paintings sold as Lot 343 in the 1999 Christie’s New York auction titled The Personal Property of Marilyn Monroe is by a ‘C. Faso’ (see below), depicting Marilyn as she appeared in Let’s Make Love.

The highest selling item, fetching $3.840, was a 1980s print from Marilyn’s nude calendar shoot with Tom Kelley, signed by the photographer to the late Kim Goodwin, who was known in the fan community for his Marilyn dolls. More surprising was a final bid of $2,240 for a mass-produced silver coin based on the calendar image, while a copy of The Strange Death of Marilyn Monroe, a 1964 pamphlet by right-wing author Frank A. Capell which kick-started the conspiracy theories about Marilyn and the Kennedys, sold for $1,280.

Interestingly, President John F. Kennedy, who was already dead at the time of writing, is barely mentioned – his brother Robert, then widely viewed as a presidential hopeful, was the unwitting target of Capell’s virulent attack. Copies of this ‘wacko booklet‘, as the Julien’s listing puts it, are still widely available from used bookstores at much lower prices. You can read a review from David Marshall, author of The DD Group (one of the most comprehensive books on Marilyn’s death) over here.

It is rather odd to see these commonplace pieces selling for considerably more than their real worth, when truly rare and personal items attract far lower bids. For example, the notes sent to Marilyn by Bus Stop director Joshua Logan and his wife Nedda attracted a relatively low final bid of $448, while a contact sheet from one of Marilyn’s last photo shoots with Allan Grant sold for $384.