From People: “Brad Pitt thinks Ana de Armas nailed her Marilyn Monroe performance.
The Bullet Train actor is a producer on the new movie Blonde via his Plan B Entertainment company. At the Los Angeles premiere of his action film Monday, he told Entertainment Tonight that the film, based on the 2000 novel by Joyce Carol Oates, was in development for a decade and didn’t push forward until they landed on de Armas, 34, for the lead.
“It was 10 years in the making. It wasn’t until we found Ana that we could get it across the finish line,” said Pitt. “She is phenomenal in it. That’s a tough dress to fill.”
Blonde is a fictionalized, NC-17 take on Monroe’s persona. It also stars Bobby Cannavale, Adrien Brody, Julianne Nicholson, Xavier Samuel and Evan Williams.
De Armas recently told ELLE about diversity in Hollywood and defying traditional casting by being a Cuban actress playing Monroe.
“I do want to play Latina. But I don’t want to put a basket of fruit on my head every single time. So that’s my hope, that I can show that we can do anything if we’re given the time to prepare, and if we’re given just the chance, just the chance,” she said. “You can do any film — Blonde — you can do anything. The problem is that sometimes you don’t even get to the room with the director to sit down and prove yourself.”
The actress spent two to three hours on set every day getting hair and makeup done for the film and she did plenty more research leading up to the shoot.
As she told Netflix Queue in June, director Andrew Dominik’s “ambitions were very clear from the start: to present a version of Marilyn Monroe’s life through her lens.” De Armas added, “He wanted the world to experience what it actually felt like to not only be Marilyn, but also Norma Jeane. I found that to be the most daring, unapologetic and feminist take on her story that I had ever seen.”
“We worked on this film for hours, every single day for almost a year. I read Joyce’s novel, studied hundreds of photographs, videos, audio recordings, films — anything I could get my hands on. Every scene is inspired by an existing photograph,” she added. “We’d pore over every detail in the photo and debate what was happening in it. The first question was always, ‘What was Norma Jeane feeling here?’ We wanted to tell the human side of her story.”
Blonde arrives on Netflix Sept. 28.”