Lost Marilyn Monroe Footage By Peter Mangone Is Discovered

Category: Entertainment / Jan 10, 2013 6:39PM EDT
Diptychs of a carefree Marilyn Monroe smiling in the streets of New York in 1955, long thought to be lost by its original filmmaker Peter Mangone, were ready to be seen by the world on Thursday (January 9). The stills are part of five and a half minutes of grainy eight millimeter footage that Mangone shot in 1955, when the 15-year-old skipped school every day to get a glimpse of his idol who was staying at the Gladstone Hotel while taking classes at the Actors Studio. Eventually the star started noticing Mangone and one day asked him to join her on her shopping trip through Manhattan. She was 29, he was 15. Turning the camera on and off throughout the afternoon, the young fan recorded the star in the bustling environment of mid-century midtown Manhattan. Today both Monroe and Mangone are gone, but the film survived in a cardboard box - long thought to have been lost. And frames of it are now part of the exhibit "Marilyn Monroe Rediscovered - The Lost Film of Peter Mangone" in New York. James Danziger is the owner of the gallery hosting the exhibit and worked with Mangone until he passed away on December 11, 2012. He said that the film is unique in the way that it shows Monroe as her natural self. "She wasn't in a movie, she wasn't acting. She liked children and she had a connection to this guy that she wouldn't have had with an older person. So I think what makes them unique is that you are really seeing Marilyn Monroe the person as opposed to Marilyn Monroe the actress," he told Reuters. When Danziger was examining the 9,212 frames of the film in preparation of the exhibit, he said that there were a few thing that stood out to him. "One of the things that surprises me in the pictures is how Marilyn Monroe was able to walk through the streets of midtown Manhattan and be completely left alone. It shows what a different era it was in 1955, that people really respected a star's privacy," he explained. "I think another thing is that Marilyn loved Manhattan, when she died, she was actually a New York City resident and she seems very comfortable in Manhattan. And I think that the way that she is dressed in these pictures, in a very chic kind of black suit with a fur collar makes her look much more like a New Yorker than we normally think of Marilyn as being," he added. The exhibit opens to the public on Friday (January 10 and runs through February 9. The photographs are limited edition prints and are for sale starting at $1,800 (USD).