EntertainmentJoan Collins recollects "sexual predators": advice from Marilyn Monroe

Joan Collins recollects "sexual predators": advice from Marilyn Monroe

Joan Collins won a Golden Globe for her role in the series "Dynasty."
Joan Collins won a Golden Globe for her role in the series "Dynasty."
Images source: © Getty Images
ed. IRO

7:57 AM EST, November 15, 2023

Joan Collins, well-known for her volatile role as Alexis in the series "Dynasty", initiated her career in Hollywood during the 1950s. In that era, young actresses often faced so-called casting couch auditions. At the beginning of her career, she encountered Marilyn Monroe, who cautioned her about the pitfalls of the industry. Collins shares this critical advice in her latest book.

Joan Collins made her film debut at 18 in her hometown of London. Hollywood soon recognized her talent. She met Marilyn Monroe at a party hosted by musical star Gene Kelly.

"Our first and last meeting gave me an impression of Monroe as an inconspicuous blonde - lonely and forlorn. She sat at the bar and even at the age of 20, I was empathetic enough to approach her. She was gentle, kind, and soft-spoken," Collins recollected in her book "Behind the Shoulder Pads: A Tale I Tell My Friends".

After exchanging pleasantries, Collins sought some guidance from her experienced colleague on navigating the new environment.

"Beware of the wolves, darling", she was advised.

"He seized my hand and placed it on his exposed fly"

Collins, already familiar with uncomfortable situations with bosses, didn't realize the full impact of the advice. During the production of "I Believe In You", she faced potential sexual assault from a producer from whom she was rescued by her co-workers. Another instance was when a film industry hotshot offered to drive her home in his Bentley to convince her about a significant role.

"On our way, he took my hand and laid it on his unbuttoned fly. Shocked, I frantically pulled my hand away. 'What's the problem? Don't you want this role?' he stuttered. 'Not so desperately,' I responded... I was still a virgin then. 'Are you frigid?' he asked in a gruff voice," Collins vividly describes the incident.

"I am simply the best and can fu...k you all night"

Joan Collins shared her unsettling experiences with Marilyn Monroe, who was not particularly surprised.

"That's nothing compared to our studio bosses. Be cautious and always expect the worst", declared the star of "Some Like It Hot".

Unfortunately, Collins had to endure another traumatic incident within a few days. Predictably, the aggressor was an American producer, as hinted by Monroe.

"He lunged at me and pressed me against the wall. A cigar clenched between his teeth, he breathed, 'You haven't had anyone until you've had me, darling. I am simply the best and can fu...k you all night," he crudely asserted.

Though Collins managed to escape her assaulter, Monroe's warning proved true as she experienced a series of similar incidents. Collins declared she never accepted such a "role for sex" deal. She mentioned an example from "Cleopatra".

"I was propositioned that in exchange for 'pleasing two old men' from 20th Century Fox, I would receive a role in the movie. I flatly rejected them", she revealed in her book.

Eventually, Elizabeth Taylor portrayed the eponymous Queen of Egypt.

Related content