Why did Marilyn divorce DiMaggio?
The uncontrollable jealousy of Joe DiMaggio or the shadow that did not abandon Marilyn nor her grave
The Hollywood icon and the baseball player married in January 1954. However, their love fizzled out after 274 days because he couldn’t stand living next to the as*x symbol.
This week (January 14) marked the 66th wedding anniversary of one of the most admired couples of this decade. That day, Marilyn Monroe and baseball player Joe DiMaggio got married in a secret civil ceremony in San Francisco which, ultimately, wasn’t so secret as fans of both and the press flocked to receive them. after giving the “yes, I do”. . ”.
He was 39 years old; She was slightly younger, 27, although the ledger showed two numbers younger. After thirteen seasons as an icon of the New York Yankees, as well as the highest-paid athlete at the time with earnings of $100,000 a year, DiMaggio had retired from competition a few months before the wedding and had only worked as a coach and commentator. .
He was a national hero, and Marilyn, who was already beginning to shine with her own light at 20th Century Fox, knew it. Legend has it that they met in June 1952 at the Villa Nova restaurant in Los Angeles thanks to a blind date organized by businessman David March. Apparently, as soon as they saw each other, the sparks flew.
DiMaggio was extremely shy, a conservative-minded celebrity who was genuinely looking for a woman who would pamper and care for him the old-fashioned way. It is true that his life was very simple and they were not usually seen at photocalls or at parties with other stars. Yet Marilyn, who in 1953 had already dazzled American audiences with Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, had no intention of stepping away from the professional spotlight. On their honeymoon in Tokyo, things started to go wrong.
As soon as she arrived at the airport in the Japanese capital, the media gathered there only had eyes for the actress. Despite the popularity she enjoyed in the United States, DiMaggio as soon as he descended from the stairs of the plane realized that his presence was practically invisible. Half the world had fallen in love with Marilyn’s beauty and he selfishly didn’t want to share her with anyone.
While the player took advantage of these days to do business (we must not forget that the Japanese have a weakness for baseball), she did not hesitate for a moment to go to Korea to encourage the American troops. In all, she performed 12 times before an audience of 60,000 burly soldiers. The images of this moment immediately went viral on televisions around the world. DiMaggio didn’t even want to see them. Jealousy took hold of him. Paradoxically, he did not get along well having the greatest sex symbols of the time by his side.
When they returned to the United States, things weren’t much better. A shooting awaited Marilyn which was going to mark a before and after in her career under the orders of Billy Wilder: La Tentación Vive Arriba. On September 15, 1954, dressed in a suggestive white model signed William Travilla, she appeared at the intersection of Lexington Avenue and 52nd Street in New York. It was one o’clock in the morning and the film crew, believing they could go unnoticed, decided to record at that moment the iconic scene in which Marilyn’s dress is lifted several times thanks to a subway entrance.
The shooting lasted three hours and up to 14 shots were needed because hundreds of journalists and onlookers had gathered around. In fact, the noise was such that a few days later Wilder had no choice but to re-record the scene on a set in Los Angeles. DiMaggio was present at all times.
And, as expected, he was not amused that his wife showed more meat than necessary in the name of the seventh art. They argued vehemently and, barely 42 days later, Marilyn ended up filing for divorce, alleging “psychological abuse” and “a career conflict”. Her marriage fell apart in nine months. To be more precise, at 274 days.
In 2014, Joe and Marilyn hit bookstores, a headline in which C. David Heymann confessed the athlete lost his temper when he brought up the movie industry. “Don’t you realize they’re using you? You’re nothing more than a piece of meat to them,” the book illustrates about the animosity DiMaggio felt toward Hollywood. He also hasn’t forgiven his friend Frank Sinatra who shortly later puts his beloved in touch with the Kennedys, but that’s another story. Even divorced, in June 1955, the ex-partner went together to the premiere of La Tentación Vive Arriba. We know that they tried to come back on more than one occasion. , but at that time the blonde only had eyes for Arthur Miller, whom she would marry the following year.
On January 20, 1961, curiously the same day that John F. Kennedy succeeded him as president, Marilyn divorced the playwright and lost control. A few days later, she was admitted to Payne Whitney’s psychiatric clinic due to a nervous breakdown and, to the surprise of many, DiMaggio returned to duty: not only was she transferred to a regular hospital, but she was also taken at his home in Miami. Her relationship was very cordial until August 5, 1962, at the age of 36, the lifeless body of the actress was found at her home in Brentwood, Los Angeles.
The former baseball player paid his funeral expenses and barred any celluloid stars from attending; he only wanted his family and the people closest to them to be there to avoid an unnecessary media circus. In 1982, as reported by El País, he ordered the Parisian florist to stop sending three bouquets a week to Marilyn’s grave, as they had done religiously for two decades. She died on March 8, 1999. She did not remarry. Knowing the lights and shadows of her relationship, the last words she spoke couldn’t be more explicit: “I’m finally going to see Marilyn.”