The Marilyn Monroe estate has come to the defense of “Blonde” star Ana de Armas after some criticized the Cuban Spanish actor’s voice in the trailer for the Netflix biopic.
In response to complaints about De Armas’ accent, representatives for the Monroe estate issued statements this week supporting “Blonde” director Andrew Dominik’s decision to cast the “Knives Out” breakout as the silver-screen legend.
“Marilyn Monroe is a singular Hollywood and pop culture icon that transcends generations and history,” said Marc Rosen, president of entertainment at Authentic Brands Group (ABG), which owns the Monroe estate.
“Any actor that steps into that role knows they have big shoes to fill. Based on the trailer alone, it looks like Ana was a great casting choice as she captures Marilyn’s glamour, humanity and vulnerability. We can’t wait to see the film in its entirety!”
Last week, Netflix released the trailer for “Blonde,” which sees De Armas transform into Monroe — platinum-blond hair, red lipstick, signature beauty mark and all. While most agreed De Armas looked the part, not everyone thought she sounded enough like the late movie star, who died 60 years ago. .
Others, however, were unbothered by De Armas’ accent and accused the performer’s haters of bigotry and xenophobia. Several pointed out the history of actors from the United States botching accents while playing characters from other countries — as well as non-Latinx European actors failing to capture American accents while portraying people from the United States — and getting a free pass.
“For us at the Marilyn Monroe estate, it’s thrilling to see all of the different portrayals of her by celebrities and actors from Kim Kardashian to Michelle Williams and now Ana De Armas,” said Nick Woodhouse, president and chief marketing officer at ABG.
“There are no rules when it comes to how an artist can honor her legacy. We embrace new interpretations of Marilyn that pay homage to her iconic star power, beauty and humanity, and bring her into relevant cultural conversations.”
Equally supportive of De Armas was actor and producer Brad Pitt, who co-produced “Blonde” through his company, Plan B. At the Los Angeles premiere of his new movie, “Bullet Train,” Pitt had nothing but praise for the “Gray Man” and “No Time to Die” star, whom he credited with getting the Monroe project off the ground.
“She is phenomenal in it,” Pitt told “Entertainment Tonight” on Monday. “That’s a tough dress to fill.”
“It was 10 years in the making,” he added. “It wasn’t until we found Ana that we could get it across the finish line.”
Adapted from Joyce Carol Oates’ novel of the same name, “Blonde” is set to premiere soon at the Venice International Film Festival, which runs from Aug. 31 to Sept. 10. The movie will begin streaming on Netflix on Sept. 28.