Now 90 years old, actress Carroll Baker – who attended the Actors Studio with Marilyn, and found fame in Baby Doll (1956) – has spoken with Scott Feinberg for the Hollywood Reporter’s Awards Chatter podcast. “She came the last day or week that I was there,” Carroll says of Marilyn. “She was very sweet, I was very bitchy. I thought I was Lee Strasberg’s favourite and I thought I was the prettiest in the class and Marilyn showed up, y’know – sunk my boat …”
Marilyn had been tipped to star in Baby Doll and was initially Tennessee Williams’ choice, but director Elia Kazan chose Baker, a newcomer to Hollywood. Nonetheless, Marilyn bore no grudge and even helped to promote the film. Carroll previously wrote a more detailed account in her 1983 memoir, and I have further examined the parallels between the two stars over here.