“If I’d observed all the rules, I’d never have got anywhere.” Of all things, Marilyn Monroe was certainly not a rule follower, which is probably why she is still one of the most interesting Hollywood stars, even 50 years after her death. It’s not just her jaw-dropping beauty that dazzles the public, but also her quick wit and her tell-it-like-it-is mentality that makes her so endearing. Today, people can see Marilyn’s extreme impact on the L.A. community by visiting the landmarks that commemorate her significance to Hollywood, the film industry and popular culture.
Walk of Fame Star
Located on the 6700 Block of Hollywood Blvd. on the same side as Ripley’s
One of the highest honors a celebrity can receive is a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Monroe’s sits in between Arsenio Hall and Arnold Schwarznegger. She received her star in 1960, the same year she won a Golden Globe for Some Like It Hot.
Handprints at Grauman’s Chinese Theater
6295 Hollywood Blvd., Los Angeles
On June 26, 1953 Monroe and actress Jane Russell had their fame written in stone when they put their signatures, handprints and shoe prints into cement in front of the Grauman’s Chinese Theatre. The two young actresses were helping to promote the film Gentlemen Prefer Blondes before its release. Monroe, as usual, looked absolutely stunning in a white halter dress. For fans, it is a great feeling to place a hand on Monroe’s tiny handprint, and feel a connection to the actress. Visitors should also see the life-sized model of Monroe that commemorates her Grauman’s signature day in front of Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum.
Her Burial Place
1218 Glendon Ave., Los Angeles
Monroe rests in the Corridor of Memories at the Westwood Village Memorial Park in crypt number 24. Her ex-husband, the baseball legend Joe DiMaggio, arranged her funeral and continued to put flowers on her grave every week for 20 years after her death. Her acting coach, Lee Strasberg, gave her eulogy, and Judy Garland’s version of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” was played.
The House Where She Died
12305 5th Helena Dr., Los Angeles
On August 5, 1962, a newspaper read, “the blond, 36-year-old actress was nude, lying face down on her bed and clutching a telephone receiver in her hand when a psychiatrist broke into her room at 3:30 am.” However, even this report is questionable, and there have been many rumors and conspiracies regarding the actress’ unusual death. Who was she calling? Why wasn’t there further investigation of her death as a possible murder? Why are there so many clues that someone had tampered with her body? There are more questions than there are answers. All that can be certain is that the actress’ death was an extremely tragic moment in Hollywood history.
Marilyn Monroe Tour
If you want someone else to tell you all about Monroe’s life in Los Angeles, then you can go on a bus tour, such as the one offered by L.A. Woman Tours titled “Marilyn’s Hollywood.” Bus tours are a good way to learn the more obscure places where Marilyn lived or frequented that visitors would have a difficult time finding.
1660 N. Highland Ave., Los Angeles
Not only is the Hollywood Museum a good place to visit for those who are interested in Hollywood history, but it is also an especially great place to go for Marilyn lovers. To commemorate the 50th anniversary of her death, the museum has a special Marilyn Monroe exhibit that will end on September 2. At this exhibit, visitors can see never-before-seen photos of Monroe taken by the last photographer to have a photo session with her, George Barris. Visitors can also see the million-dollar honeymoon dress that she wore on a USO tour to entertain troops in Korea.