Did Marilyn Monroe really take her own life – or was she killed in a high-level conspiracy?
That is the question asked by a British writer and actress who is battling to get a movie made about the final days of the American sex symbol in August 1962.
Vicki McKellar is convinced the Some Like It Hot star was murdered following illicit trysts with the late president John F Kennedy and his then Attorney General brother Bobby.
Her co-authored play, The Marilyn Conspiracy, received rave reviews at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and she has been in discussions about putting it on the big screen.
Vicki is also keen to counter Ana de Armas’ portrayal of Marilyn, whose real name was Norma Jeane, in the controversial Netflix film Blonde which she describes as “an abomination”.
She claims that rather than constantly being in tears – like Marilyn is in the streaming channel’s drama – friends reported that the actress was in a happy place before she died.
Australian director Andrew Dominik has also taken a lot of flak for the level of nudity in Blonde and the graphic sex scenes.
Vicki tells The Sun: “It’s full of misery, in nearly every scene she is crying or in a terrible state. They have just put across a one-dimensional Marilyn Monroe.”
Here Vicki shares six reasons why she believes Marilyn didn’t take her own life – despite coroners ruling her cause of death was “probable suicide”.
While Marilyn’s battles with prescribed drugs and depression are well documented, it is far from clear that she ever intended to take her own life.
Prior to her death the actress had been through a detox, won a Golden Globe and did her first photo shoot for Vogue magazine.
Vicki says: “Marilyn had so much to live for, her friends were saying how happy she seemed in the last week of her life. She had just signed a two-picture deal with Fox which was going to give her a million dollars.
“She was back on top and trying to get her life back together.”
The coroner ruled that suicide was only probable, rather than certain.
So, if Marilyn didn’t choose to end her own life at the age of just 36, how did she come to be found unconscious in her home on Helena Drive in the Brentwood neighborhood of Los Angeles?
For two decades after the actress’s shocking end it was accepted that she had swallowed a fatal amount of sleeping pills.
But Vicki claims no traces of pills were found in the actress’s stomach, which there should have been if she had ingested them orally.
The autopsy report said that “the stomach is almost completely empty. No residue of the pills is noted” – however the toxicity level was so high it was deemed she would have had to have taken 60 to 70 pills.
Vicki explains: “There was no residue of sleeping pills in her stomach, yet there were enough drugs in her system to kill four people. So how did they get in her body? John Miner, the deputy district attorney of Los Angeles at the time, inspected the body and he said the organs all went missing the next day.”
Miner, who died in 2011, came to the conclusion that the fatal dose had been forced into her body.
Vicki continues: “The police officer who got there on the scene said he found no drinking receptacle by the bed, so how did she get the drugs down her?”
Miner believed she was given an enema of the barbiturate drug Nembutal and was convinced that Marilyn had no hand in her death.
That leaves the question – who did?
Vicki says: “I don’t think there is any doubt she had affairs with Bobby Kennedy and his brother JFK.
“They both unceremoniously dumped her, and she couldn’t get over it. She was fuming. By all accounts Bobby Kennedy had done far too much pillow talk and told her far too many things and she was keeping a note of everything.”
In one of Blonde’s most lurid scenes, Marilyn is shown pleasuring the president after being brought to him by a security team.
The Netflix film hints that the actress was worried about being tailed by the security services.
Vicki explains: “I believe her home was bugged by various people, the CIA, because of JFK.”
It is rumoured that Marilyn had a ‘little red book’ with incriminating information within its covers that various people wanted to get hold of.
Previously redacted FBI files emerged in 2012 show the bureau was monitoring Marilyn, due to her communist-leaning acquaintances which concerned government officials.
The big question posed by Vicki’s play, which she co-wrote with Olivier Award winner Guy Masterson, is what happened after Marilyn died.
According to most reports she passed away around 10.30pm on August 4 and the widow of Marilyn’s publicist said she knew of her death half an hour later.
Yet the actress’s doctor Hyman Engelberg did not officially pronounce her dead until 4.25am the following day.
Vicki believes that seven people were in Marilyn’s home during those intervening hours.
“What did they talk about?” she asks.
They included English actor Peter Lawford, who was great friends with Marilyn and married to JFK’s sister Patricia Kennedy.
He is said to have confessed to knowing about a ‘cover-up’ shortly before he died from years of substance abuse in 1984 aged 61.
It was also rumoured that Lawford allowed the Kennedys to use his Malibu home to sleep with Marilyn.
It is alleged that on the afternoon of August 4, Robert Kennedy flew into Los Angeles from San Francisco, and went to Marilyn’s home with Lawford.
Lawford admitted to speaking on the phone to Marilyn the night she died, but nothing more.
Why did ambulance U-turn?
The report from Dr. Engelberg said that Marilyn had died at her house.
But Walt Schaefer, who was the boss of the ambulance company that removed her body, claimed she breathed her last breath at Santa Monica Hospital.
Vicki goes even further, alleging: “She died on route to the hospital and then they turned back and took her back to the house.
“There was mass panic; not only did Marilyn Monroe, the biggest film star in the world, die, but there was also foul play.”
Rumours about a CIA conspiracy were so powerful that in 1982, Los Angeles District Attorney John Van de Kamp reopened the case.
But there was a lack of hard, fresh evidence to establish any kind of cover-up or support a murder theory.
Van de Kamp concluded that Marilyn had taken the overdose either knowingly or accidently, which was the same as the original verdict.
The conspiracy theory remained exactly that – a theory.
It’s over. Everyone involved is dead. Let sleeping dogs lie. Nothing good can happen by reopening the past.
Let’s just ”Move On”. Nothing to see here. Sorry, that was a Clinton line.
Man, did white women adore the Kennedy clan, particularly jfk. Shows how gullible women are. And Obama thanks them!!!!