Filmmakers Plan Biopic on Marilyn in Mexico

A new movie focusing on Marilyn’s trip to Mexico is in the works, Variety reports. Miami-based BTF Media and Loz Dos Studios, a Latinx production studio, are developing the biopic. BTF Media founders Francisco Cordero and Ricardo Coeto are partnering with Dennis Polar from Loz Dos Studios to co-produce the film inspired by the life of Monroe. The screenplay is penned by Alexa Polar, founder of Female Filmmakers Fuse, a non-profit organization that supports diversity, equity, and inclusion in film.

The article also states that the filmmakers will explore Marilyn’s Latina heritage, but this is somewhat misleading. Marilyn’s mother Gladys Monroe was born in Porfirio Diaz, Mexico in 1902. At the time, her father Otis Monroe was working on construction of the Mexican National Railway. However, neither Otis nor his wife Della were Mexican, and the family returned to Los Angeles before Gladys’ first birthday.

During her early career in Hollywood, Marilyn told reporters that Gladys was dead. This ‘white lie’ was not an attempt to conceal Gladys’ place of birth, as the article states, but to shield her from publicity. Marilyn later admitted that her mother was very much alive, but had been ill for many years.

In February 1962, Marilyn flew to Mexico City with publicist Pat Newcomb, hairdresser George Masters, and homecare assistant Eunice Murray. During the week-long trip, she stayed at the Hilton Continental Hotel, where she held a press conference. She socialised with American expatriate Fred Vanderbilt Field and his wife, Nieves. (Field was an avowed communist, and this meeting is mentioned in Marilyn’s FBI files – see here.) She visited a movie set, and donated generously to an orphanage.

Marilyn also travelled to Cuernevaca that week, and bought furnishings for her new hacienda-style home in Los Angeles. After her return to Hollywood, she attended the Golden Globes with screenwriter Jose Bolanos, whom she had met in Mexico.

UPDATE: Screenwriter Alexa Polar has confirmed to me (via Twitter) that her script focuses on Marilyn’s 1962 trip to Mexico. She also confirmed that the Variety article’s suggestion that Marilyn had Latinx heritage is incorrect.

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