Transcript:

Interviewer: I'm going to just started off with a darling little well-known phrase. You're only a boy and you're only a girl between now and.

Amy Greene: That's right. That's what started the whole thing. Because.

Interviewer: How is that?

Amy Greene: It happened at the look offices. Melton Green was so secure that he was the only photographer to leave Life magazine and go to work for look, which was unheard of at the time. I mean, life was rolling and nobody left. They would sell their mothers to get on staff. But life in Milton fell in love with a lovely lady called Fleur Coles, and she brought him literally two to look. And he was the highest paid photographer in the world. He had a contract for three years for over one hundred thousand dollars. Now this is in nineteen fifty four, three, three, four, whatever it was. So he was swinging and they worked in Tandem Fleur and Milton. And his first assignment was to do a Hollywood Christmas issue. And that's how the whole thing started. And Marilyn had sprained an ankle on a terrible film called Not Niagara. It was the other one with Robert Mitchell.

Interviewer: River run.

Amy Greene: Red River. Something about our rivers. Oh, God. And he she had two weeks off. So a very. Excuse me, a very good editor that worked the Pacific Coast. The West Coast editor of Look magazine brought them together and she literally walked in on crutches and with the ankle all bandaged up. And she had heard so much about Milton Green, Milton Green Mill Green that you expected an older gentleman. And he was then 32 and gorgeous. I mean, it just looked like John Garfield to die to plots. Anyway, that's another story. She looked at him and said, put you're just a boy. And he smiled that charm and said, and you're just a girl. And that was it. They laugh. They went into the sunset. You know, it was just. And if you see in that series of photographs that he did, you see that one of the angles is totally banded. She's crossing a foot and one of them is a totally bandaged.

Interviewer: Like, you just talk a little bit about the sort of hole. And I know it's this relatively short sort of whole arc, the evolution of that of that relationship, aside from the fact that there was an instant chemistry there. Obviously, they were also able the photographs of Milton, I think, ah, he had them. So many of these are get many photographers had long sustained relationships with their ungraded. Diana certainly did over a long period of time. Eve Arnold worked with her for the better part of a decade. A lot of people worked with her for a long time. Milton worked with her for a long time there. Also worked with her on many levels for a long time.

Amy Greene: Milton was the one that sparked your imagination. Milton took her to places that she had never even thought of going one Sunday afternoon. They went to the back lot of 20th Century Fox and literally played from 12:00 noon till the light went down at seven o'clock that night and he put her in the song of Bernadette. I mean, it was such an in-joke, America's sex symbol in a saint's outfit. I mean, that kind of nonsense was going on and they were like two kids let loose in a candy store. I mean, they were just having the best time. So she trusted him completely and explicit. Look, Explo, whatever your blipped got out. And she knew that he was never gonna hurt her. And he never did. Never. Even when they're Marilyn Monroe Productions was going on. He always protected the star. She never did television. Everybody wanted her on television. And he said, no, she's a movie star. You want to see or she's on the silver screen. So she loved all that. She was protected. The four years she spent with us were Joshua Logan, the director, were her golden years. And then Arthur came into the picture. But that's a whole other story.

Interviewer: Let's go back to this sort of troubled element between them. Another element of our putting this film together is sort of realizing that the many moods of her and and how she worked with various people, these photographs, the photographs with Milton, by and large, consistently, I feel, even after which even at the very end when she came back. There is such an openness. They said you. You sort of just so feel that it's OK.

Amy Greene: They also spoke in their own language, which was absolutely fascinating. I mean, they were at the dinner table and the two of them would be talking. I speak three languages. I don't know what they were talking about. Lawyer talk, speak. Lawyers speak to lawyer, doctor speak to doctors, EU human being spoke film. And this is what Debenham. This is what your behavior in hope. What another story in her worst moments on Prince and the Showgirl. He said you're having a bad day. She said, Oh, God, I thought I carried on. He said, guess what the next one is going to be. She said, What next ones? I don't like I can't think about that. Then she's turned me in the next one. And Milton said, was gonna direct you. Gee, I don't know you. That's your business. And she turned again and said, who? And he smiled and said, Charlie Chaplin, my God. I mean, that was bringing this hysterical lady back into the fold. And all of a sudden it was Christmas Eve on the set. Everything was wonderful, smiling. Terrific. And Charlie. Now, who else but Milton Greene would have thought to bring in Charlie Chaplin to do the next one?

Interviewer: Well, your good friend Norman Mailer also likened her comedic talents to Chaplin's talent. Right. And and just that and then talked about a lot about sort of what it is to have sort of the timing of the comedienne and has and really consummate. She was on into that level of her of her acting ability.

Amy Greene: She she did another film where she has very thick. I think it's hard to marry a millionaire. She had very thick glasses. That's Farse. That's Monia French foris. And she did it beautifully. I mean, she was absolutely funny and you didn't expect it then but or bimbo or whatever I want to call. She was funny and she revelled in it.

Interviewer: Tell me about you meeting her. I mean here you are married to Milton. You've both very you and she are very young. You're your baby husband.

Amy Greene: Absolutely. And I met her, first of all, when we were out in Beverly Hills. Gene Kelly's house. I love Gene Kelly. Oh, divine man. I even dance with Gene Kelly. Anyway. We played charades every Saturday night and we played trades. Gene always had me on his team because I was terrific. You're a player. It was great. And Milton went to get Marilyn. And she came in. The interesting thing about Marilyn is that very few people in the Hollywood colony knew her or had anything to do with her because she really got up, went to makeup, went to work, came back, took a shower, went to bed. I mean, that was her life. She had no social life whatsoever. So for her being Gene Kelly's house, I mean, that was already, you know, a big thing. And somehow everybody that was there was delighted. Hello, how are you? Nice to see you. And went back to the game. Nobody bothered at what she loved. Milton stuttered. He was painfully shy, as was Marilyn. So these two human beings were the two worst rate players in the world. So they sat in the corner and we were carrying on like crazy. During the intermission, I Melton said, come meet my. Hello, how are you? Nice to see you. And you looked at me with big eyes and say, How can you do that? I said, Why? She said, She plays your rage. I wish I could. I said, All we're doing is making fools of ourselves. Come on. Join the group. You know, I could never do that. That's the first time I met her.

Interviewer: And then from that moment, I mean, she quite I perhaps insinuated is the wrong word that she was in your life or.

Amy Greene: She was in my life completely. And she paid me a great compliment. She said, you're the only person that intimidates me. You said good. Is good. Remember that it's OK to be afraid of somebody somewhere along the line. And it better be me. No problem.

Interviewer: Well, and also here, too, is that you are two very different types of girls.

Amy Greene: Plus one very important thing. She we brought her into our life. We never brought her, but she never brought us into her life, which is also interesting.

Interviewer: Very.

Amy Greene: Very interesting. Yeah, we took her everywhere. Did everything. I mean, you know.

Interviewer: Well, I want to back up just a bit about one of the things Arthur Miller, interestingly, said in reference to the film.

Amy Greene: I said, yes, yes, yes. That's why I'm here.

Interviewer: The whole with this that, by the way, shot a.

Amy Greene: Nice the. I never lie. Don't overdo, by the way.

Interviewer: You're so not alone in this. We'll get to that. But the thing I hate, one of the things he says, if you remember, because he had said to me he wouldn't speak of her, but I so I said to him and I was very happy. I respect that. And I said, but if you speak of Rosalind because this was a character and the comment that he makes about this character had had many men in her life. There were no real men in her life. And you say she had no real social life. And we know that the marriages were non successful.

Amy Greene: But she always had a lover dying. Always had a lover. Nobody knew about sneaking in, sneaking out. Always had somebody.

Interviewer: And during the times that she was living with you, that was also the case.

Amy Greene: I was the one that said to Milton, this is a grown woman. I mean, come on. She has to have her own life. Can't spend her life with us. The kids. Come on. Oh, I never thought of that. Mr.

Interviewer: So she did. And you were you know, she did this with you. She certainly did this with Lee Strasberg.

Amy Greene: We put her in the old Gladstone Hotel, which was on Drifty Secondary, which of course has been torn up, and that was her weekend hangout and she would come in and go shopping. And, you know, the young lady in New York. It was I opened up her life for.

Interviewer: Absolutely. So how so that. I mean, how do you that that she came into your life but didn't bring people into it?

Amy Greene: She had no life to be. She had no life. I'm sorry. One time, Frank Sinatra, whom I loved. I mean, passionate. He's at the Copacabana. And I'm. We can't go because we can't get a table and blah, blah, blah. And she says, what's the matter? What was it? I said, I want to see Sinatra, but we can't. She said, You want to sit and drink. Come on, get dressed. OK, we get all dressed up. She's in a white ermine coat, white satin Narelle dress underneath. We go to the Copa. We stand at the top of the stairs. The show is Frank's already on. We stand at the top of the stairs and all of a sudden the maitre d Piech turns around and realizes who it is. And Milton, because he recognizes me. And she walks down now. I'm in her life. She walks down like a movie star, a vision in white. It's like she's being lit. And all of a sudden this murmur throughout all these 250, 300 people now. So not just going, what's happening? I'm over here. I'm doing a show. What's going on in our heads are turned to Marilyn in one instance. They get us to a table as big as a matchbook. They put three chairs around it. And now we're sitting and I'm looking up at Frank and smiling because there he is in front of me. That was her world.

Interviewer: Do you think it was also. I mean, there's always the all the writing, all the stuff about her great desire for family, great desire for children.

Amy Greene: Please don't even go there. No, I don't even I mean, she she had 20 abortions. Do not say that on television. And nobody is to say that anywhere.

Interviewer: Marilyn and Milton for. So let's not. So they're doing their photography together. They've got this life.

Amy Greene: They this life together. And Milton was the one that brought her to leave.

Interviewer: Very that's very interesting. How did that happen? She's because of what? The reason I ask you this is that I was with Patty Bosworth yesterday.

Amy Greene: I know party girl, isn't she? She's terrific. How's she doing? She's good. How's Tom? Not good. He's gonna go, right?

Interviewer: Yeah.

Amy Greene: But that's what's awaiting us all. Oh, good focus.

Interviewer: But she was talking about the fact of movie stars coming into the Actor's Studio and that they actually that she was kind of the one that started that and had been doing some of it.

Amy Greene: But no, no, she was not the first. I mean, not the first.

Interviewer: But Marlon was heavily Brando was there. But it certainly was when she came that sort of because she was talking about Strasberg as being someone that she thought was really quite great with perhaps more so even with with the stars, because he was, first of all, in love with the stars.

Amy Greene: She said it. He was just.

Interviewer: Yeah, that's.

Amy Greene: OK.

Interviewer: Yeah. And and but it also it was that ability to sort of work with them in the details of their.

Amy Greene: Worming his way through.

Amy Greene: I mean, I'm not.

Interviewer: Well, tell me, Hamilton, tell me how the Northern League.

Amy Greene: It was a wonderful ableist. Vogel, who is the head of William Morris, and Jules Stein, who is the head of NCAA, both wanted Marilyn because at this point, she's living with us. She's not honoring her contract with 20th. And everybody want to, so I'll never forget Gene Stein, who is Joel Stein's daughter. And Susan, anyway, we went to a dinner and Milton sat next to Jules and they liked each other immediately. Really? That's two men. They really liked each other. So that's why Madeleine went to MCI instead of a large fellow who we love Gabler's. But Joel Stein was a whole other mentor, as it were, of Milton. So because of that, Marilyn was given to a man called Blossman and because of the Wassmann he was that she was then given to a man called Jay Kanter, who worked absolutely in tandem with Milton 24 hours a day, seven days a week. And those were the ideas, Lou Osserman, Jay Kanter and Milton Green. And then that became the formation that became the formation of Marilyn Road Productions. And again, she was totally protected. She could get in to see the Wasserman on her own. I mean, please give me a break. So and she adored Jay, who is the dearest Marlon Brando's only agent, by the way, the whole time. And they did it on a handshake. That's how wonderful it it's the word honesty keeps going back.

Interviewer: And she was very key.

Amy Greene: I mean, she she wanted honesty. She wanted respect more than anything else. Respect.

Interviewer: And I think that her own way of dealing, one would have to say, was also to be very honest.

Amy Greene: That's right. Now, she she never lied to me. She never lied to Milton.

Interviewer: So to tell that that about the formation of Marilyn Monroe Productions, how they went about it, how long it lasted.

Amy Greene: It lasted four years. They did two films. Bus stop, were in bus stop. If you see bus stop today, you can rent it on a DVD. Milton let her costumed her control the makeup that Whitey Ford, who is a prison, not Whitey Ford. Whitey Ford is a pitcher for the New York Yankees. I'm OK. Is Whitey Snyder, who we loved, and the hairdresser Sidney Gular off who was at MGM, but he and Marilyn fell in love with the asphalt jungle. So wherever Marilyn did a film, Sidney would come running back and do her hair and then tell us somebody what to do. And then he'd go back to MGM, the greatest gossip in the world. Spend an evening with Sidney. You know everything about everybody. Garbo. Myrna Loy. Clark Gable. Harlow. I mean, this man was there and he did their hair and he was the one that straight Garbo's hair. You know, she had very curly, terrible hair. She said, I think you need straightening and zagged. And that sounds wonderful. I'm talking about Meryl. But the only reason I'm saying this is that you. Every aspect she was protected and she knew that everybody that surrounded her was totally on her side and loved her. So what's not to like? The bills were paid.

Interviewer: Would you say that this was sort of the most secure time with her?

Amy Greene: Yes. The golden period that Joshua Logan said.

Interviewer: From fifty four to fifty fifty four to fifty eight.

Amy Greene: Yeah.

Interviewer: Right. I mean, that's getting him getting back to Milton and the photographs again, the photographs are healthy.

Amy Greene: Very healthy. You could see that they're literally creating they both want to create works of art. This isn't just an eight by 10 still that, you know, glossy that you'll get anywhere. Twenty did that. Every time they went in front of the camera, they were creating something for posterity. And she loved it. I mean, you eat it up like, you know, why not?

Interviewer: Her comfort level is is palpable.

Amy Greene: Absolutely. I dressed her. I got stockings for that woman. Never wore stockings. California. What do you mean? Running around the streets without stockings? I went to Geraldine Stutts, who was then the president of Bendel's, and I said, I need a color that nobody has yet because holos at that point were kind of t and they were orangy and they were you know, I said, no, no, no, no, I need something like parchment. She loved that idea. She literally called the North Carolina fabric of what you call it, factory. And over the phone, she described to them what you wanted. And those are what Marilyn Monroe wore for the rest of her life, parchment from Bendel's. And, of course, then it went on the bender line and Geraldine made eight million dollars out of.

Interviewer: Nobody. She never made the money off her than everybody else. That's right.

Amy Greene: That's right. So she had no concept, no concern about money whatsoever. Koochie.

Interviewer: So let's talk about these poor, particularly assets, such iconic sitting's the Balga.

Amy Greene: What is what is the ballerina? It's very interesting about what people take to their hearts. OK. There is a picture running around that Milton took a Marilyn with a dog, a Pekinese. What is this? People love this dog with the Pekinese and Marilyn. That's a dumb stupid. It sells like hotcakes. Explain that to me, please. OK. I had a friend call Anticline the dress designer, and she was married to Ben Klein. And once a month I would go up to junior sophisticates, which was the name of the firm. And in Ben's private office was this huge closet, and they would be all the sample pieces. And Annie and I would fight over these Apple pieces. She was a little bit bigger than I was. But now this is my. No, this is not why you take this. I'll take this. So I went in and got Marilyn since I knew the Milton was going to shoot and they wanted something special. I got her a couple of dresses from Annie except one thing, they were sample sizes so she couldn't zip them up. That's why you see the photograph, which incidentally, is only the slip of the dress. That is the undergarment of the actual white lace dress that has never been photographed. So this is the underpinnings. And you see that you can't slip it up because it's a sample size. Now, who else but Milton would. The sheet, a very tender. I love her feet. She had wonderful feature, terrible elbows, but she had wonderful feet and little toes. It's so adorable. It's like a little girl hanging off the side of the bed. You know, she's looking. And the hairdresser didn't show up. So that's why your hair looks like her. But her hair is great. But it all worked because of the lighting, because of the background and because of what the man was looking in the lens. I think he shot those that said not any by 10. I think it was a a block. I think it was a house.

Interviewer: Yeah, it looks like a square. Yeah. What was their interaction like when they were working together in a in a photography setting?

Amy Greene: They she was very quiet. You would say what he wanted and she gave it to him. He was an extraordinary director and a lighting man, of course. So she always whatever he asked her to do, she would do because it was very quick. And also he was very quick. He was like, Russell. I mean, Ching John jump. And he would always yeah, he'd always smile. And she I shot from the hip, which was so cute.

Interviewer: And in particular in the valleys, you really get that feeling their heads down. I mean, you do get the feeling that this was just absolutely constant and sometimes sometimes aggressively something.

Amy Greene: And the people love this. This is I mean, they buy it and buy it and buy generation after generation after generation. They see something.

Interviewer: What is quite timeless looking.

Amy Greene: Yeah.

Interviewer: First of all, just what you say, the sort of the ballet is a ballet and everything, like a child in a ballet dress, very evocative to everybody. We also took dancing lessons. So people always kind of have that.

Amy Greene: And they open zipper on it,.

Interviewer: I'm sure. And her hair is very modern looking. There's nothing about this that stated at all.

Amy Greene: It's extraordinarily extreme. How close are now? 50 years. Oh, dear God.

Interviewer: Let's talk a little bit about the Black Sea. The other so famous and.

Amy Greene: The black setting. I got it was almost impossible to get the fishnet hose because they weren't making it at the time. And I call my friend Ruth Berle, who whom I remember was wearing black silk, black fishnet host. And I said, Ruthie, where'd you get those? She said, well, you talking about. And she said, they're attached to shoes. I said, What do you mean? She said, I bought the shoes and the hose and it all comes up. I said, I need them. She said, What do you want? Employees. And Milton has photographing Marilyn. This would make terrific. Barbara Ruth Berle sent over her omeprazole shows, which, of course, Mel then cut away. So you see, because the the holes were just sort of glued into the shoe, it was all one comment. So they if you see in some of them the bottom of the soles, you'll see that something else is going on. But they're both burls. I have to give you total credit for that. And it was also the black velvet backgrounds. He did the same thing with Garland. He did a wonderful portrait of Garland. And somehow. It's like Patiño having a black velvet background when it does, Richard, the third. There's something about black velvet that is very sensuous and very rich. And look at me. I'm a street kid. But here I am in black velvet. Wow. So it was brilliant. Milton was brilliant in bringing out people's inner emotions because he would capture them on film. So. He threw Joe Yula, who is the stylist with Milton at the time.They were business partners, really. He made his black velvet room, which is really what it is. They were draped over chairs. They were draped, the black velvet was draped over. I mean, they must have market cornered the market on down 7th Avenue with black velvet that nobody there, one of a theater theatrical house called Daisy in where everybody sort of went and got a hundred yards of this and a thousand yards of that because they made the curtains of the theater. So that's what they did. They made a black velvet room and strobe strobe lights. Remember, strobe lights. Think that's what they look like. Remember strobe light records and it's total control.

Interviewer: They're very feisty. Ask to hear. You know, you look at these again.

Amy Greene: Same thing. It's like velvet hat and white skin point shows. I mean, it's all the same generation. Absolutely. And Stax, you know, everybody says, oh, the 50s were so sexually repressed. Not in my life. They weren't sexually repressed. Nobody that I know was sexually repressed. I mean, come on, guys. Now we're we're in the theater. We were in my publishing. We were in magazines. We were everywhere else. The 50s were terrific because it was the dawning of something quite wonderful that we didn't we were inventing it as we went along.

Interviewer: And she really holds that decade. If you take us well, if you go from Asphalt Jungle to misfits, which is obvious to do. There it is. And her and the best moments of the decade are the middle point with the whole pivot point with Milton. Is it you see it? It's there. It's the mid 50s and it is absolutely palpable. You know what? To what do you attribute. Not and this is kind of a question I don't like, but I'll ask you anyway, the staying power of this woman and these images, one of the things that has been interestingly said to me over this time is that young people now don't know her films at all, but they all know these images. Certain moves.

Amy Greene: Like Jagger are there on T-shirts there. I mean, she's everywhere. I've analyzed it and analyzed it because I was there and I don't understand it. But the closest that I have come up with is that men take her, see her in the dreams, whether they're masturbating or whatever it is. They see her as part of their inner being. And they like Carafano. She had a great family, by the way. And they like her boobs and they like her everything about her. So therefore, they take. Her to bed with them and do whatever men do in bed, whatever. You know, having had two sons, I know very well with it. But anyway. That and then that passes on from one generation to the next. And guys, your guys. Yeah. I really. Guys, your guys. I mean, what's the name of that wonderful man in London, Steffans? Did the black holes as Stephen Hawkins. OK. Guess who is on Stephen Hawkins wall? The ballerina picture. And when he was asked, what did you what do you see in Marilyn Monroe? And he said, Inner Beauty and Scheck's. Now, this is a guy in a wheelchair. I know Stephen Hawking. God bless him, you know. So that's what it is. Now, Jean Harlow isn't able to do this. Harlow died. Graybeal died. Rita Hayworth died. I mean, they were all wonderful women at their time, but they didn't go forward. They didn't transgress generations. And Marilyn, maybe it's a little bit of vulgarity that appeals. Oh, boy. You know, I'm going to get this on. Maybe nobody knows.

Interviewer: Is it fathomable to you at all that she could have reached 80? I mean, this.

Amy Greene: No. I never knew. I know because I knew that the first wrinkle, it would have been disaster. And I also, Milton, never, ever believed that she committed suicide. Never, never, never, never. It was just an accident. Yeah, that's exactly. Yeah. This is like anything that's just an accident.

Interviewer: Let's talk a little bit about the M m m productions, the sort of I don't want to get into a lot of gossipy things about Miller, but sort of the intrusion of Miller and then what started to happen to that? Because I also know that probably her what I think was sending her in the right direction and may have kept her also alive and able to work would have been if she could have kept these those records with Milton and kept her.

Amy Greene: And Charlie Chaplin.

Interviewer: And Charlie Chaplin. And Charlie was Milton must have been very sad.

Amy Greene: Let me explain. Marilyn met Arthur on the backlot of 20th century. She had done Scott Tahoe's Go to Hay or some one of those terrific films, and she hadn't blown her lines and the director was so angry that he thought, oh, I'm going to cut you out, you dumb up. So she went off on a soundstage and was crying, literally crying behind boxes. And Kazan, who was doing about that, leave us up. Arthur and Arthur, we're walking. And they heard this person crying. So they went in and looked at her. And that's the first time she ever saw Arthur Miller. Now, that story she told me or so she became interested in Kazan, not author, and they're reputed to have had a love affair. So she did know Arthur Miller was the only reason she knew Kisan was because he was doing about that, too, you know, a soundstage away. So that's how it started. And then when she went to the Actor's Studio, he materialized one day. And he she had authorized a very good friend called Norman Roston, who was a poet, and his wife, Netta, and who lived at Brooklyn Heights. And she became very friendly with them. And Arthur lived down the street. So Arthur was always hanging out with the Ralston's. And Marilyn, that's how the whole thing started.

Interviewer: And he certainly had no use for Lee Strasberg that we know yet.

Amy Greene: No, he is not.

Interviewer: Certainly in the way of.

Amy Greene: The basic problem with Arthur is that he has absolutely no had absolutely no sense of humor. He was. Oh. And you could be very stubborn and you could move on one way or the other. He was what he was because he was. And that's it. The first time he came to dinner at our house in Connecticut, she was very nervous because she knew that maybe I would like Arthur. And then what was she going to do? Milton had already shrugged her shoulders at OK. Who cares? Arthur Fine. But I was the one that he had to pass muster with. And I was charming. I was a nice I couldn't get a word in edgewise because he told me later he was as nervous about me as she was about him. And he talked and talked and talked for eight hours straight. Good. There was no conversation. It was Arthur doing a monologue. So when it was over, she sort of came over to where do you think that first thing you have to tell him is to show up and let people speak? Because that's a conversation and that's how you spend the evening? Oh, no, he's fine. Don't worry about it. I mean, I couldn't care less. Arthur Miller, I thought he was a genius as far as a playwright goes, but that he would be. So what's the word I want. Insensitive to her. He didn't understand. Not for a moment. Not for one. They didn't laugh. They didn't fool around. They did. I mean, she was crazy about him. Now, why would you crazy about it? Let's get to that, because he looked like Abraham Lincoln and she worshipped Abraham Lincoln. I mean, please. I said, what are you doing? Looks like Abraham like God. I mean, we work out and you.

Interviewer: Tell me a little bit about that girlfriends together, because you really were. And one of the things I remember reading and kind of loved, and it might have even been Milton's Marilyn and I remember where it is about until a little bit about you because you were working for glamour.

Amy Greene: And at that point. Oh, no. No, you don't. No, I wasn't working. I was taking care of the kids. I was reading scripts more than anything else.

Interviewer: But you were very chic. Very.

Amy Greene: Oh, I was on the best dress for four years running. I'm spending Milton's money having a wonderful time.

Interviewer: And she's quite different from you. Set me physically in it.

Amy Greene: Well.

Interviewer: I'm not just talking size. I'm copying her whole presentation.

Amy Greene: Her whole presentation was totally different from me. But I did have Norman Earl Maker, a black cashmere two piece suit with a sable collar, which she worshiped. I had. We went to Rome. Oh, funny story. I transgress, but it's all a part of life. Sammy Davis, whom I love and adore, was a very good friend of ours. And he's playing at the Apollo Theater. And he says to me one night, come on up, because Avery's gonna be there. Oh, OK. So we get in the car and up we go to the Apollo and there is Eva Gardner in the box and there is now Marilyns in the other box and people are going ape interrupt craziness going on. And I looked down and I see the best looking high heeled pumps I have ever seen in my life. I sidle up to Avon. I say, where do you get your shoes? And she said. Why? I said, Courreges, where'd you get it? She said, Enron in a place called DOWL DLC. Oh, OK. Next time we're in Rome. I got Marilyn. Twenty five pairs of Dacko pumps. Now, do you think anyone in the world has ever gotten this lady? Twenty five pairs of shoes.

Interviewer: And she could walk in them.

Amy Greene: And she could run on them. Exactly. You see them in Buster. You see them in The Prince and the Showgirl. And she took them with her. And after that, Delcourt went out of business or she lied to Vera Garbos. So but that's the kind of protection does it is just having a good time. I had a lovely time buying the shoes. She had a lovely time wearing the shoes, and I was delighted. Oh, that's Econolodge.

Interviewer: Talk a little bit about this feeling of. I want to talk a bit about this sort of cocoon of protectiveness that Emily, every of course, many people talk about her need to be protected of her. Did you know Robert Stein, by the way?

Amy Greene: No. With Robert.

Interviewer: He's the guy who was in the 50s, the editor of Redbook. And he's the one who commissioned the fingers.

Amy Greene: Oh, no, no. Just very I heard of him. But I'm.

Interviewer: Not only like, oh, yeah, he's an extremely good guy, but I know. But everybody many people subpoenaed people that were in that time with her. Totally. And of course, we read it to this need to be protected in this need to.

Amy Greene: Know it wasn't her need. It was our need or anybody else's need to protect her. She was the catalyst that we all protected. It wasn't that she said, you must do this or you must do that. She never asked for anything, which is also interesting what she would say to me. I can't sleep. What should I do? So I would say we'll go to Dr. Schultz and you'll take care of the problem or I have to have my teeth cleaned. Where should I go? So it was constant. Basic, everyday things, you know, after the Sinatra incident at the Copa. I said, I'm not walking on the street with you anymore. Could you do recognizable? And I don't like crowds. I put her in a page boy, black prince, valiant wig. What do you call it? A pillow on her stomach and a maternity suit. We did that three times. She said, I don't like this. She like to be recognized. So that was the end of that. But that's how it would go to matinees. I'm not going to get this right.

Interviewer: Great story of her. Say, you know, do you want to be on the street? Kind of kind of just ordinary looking and saying you want to see her and sort of like.

Amy Greene: Instantly. Instantly.

Interviewer: Instantly. Yeah. Larry Show is telling me a funny story, though, that I wonder if Josh wouldn't be very supportive to me. At one point we were talking and he said, well, the thing was nice that she was a friend of my mother's shoes and that he said she wasn't that attractive. And then suddenly he said she wasn't tall, she wasn't thin. She then said she was tall. She was this, you know. So the ability to inhabit Marilyn.

Amy Greene: No. Well, Sam show was a pussycat. I mean, he was a dear, sweet man in the world. And there again, he adored her and she adored him.

Interviewer: She had a particular, I think, obvious love affair with a camera and seemed to be.

Amy Greene: And guys. And guys. She was a girl. I mean, it was a. Was fornicating. That's it, pure and simple, and you got it on film. Nobody touch anybody, but there it was. She was giving and he was giving, and it was always with a gun. That's why Eve's photographs are not that terrific girl.

Interviewer: Well, it's true. They're very different.

Amy Greene: Different. Very different.

Interviewer: And the only other woman photographer that I know of anything at all with her was in the marathon race.

Amy Greene: That's her story.

Interviewer: Yes. Oh, yes.

Amy Greene: I mean, she was a nice lady. I'm not going that very she was a very, very nice ladies lady. But.

Interviewer: I'll just tell you a little story. I know at the Arthur Miller Memorial, Marilyn, the museum was not even heard and there was not even a single photograph of her or them together. It's fine. It's fine.

Amy Greene: Yeah, well, Rebecca may have something to do with it, but still. But Rebecca was engaged in. All right.

Interviewer: Yes. Yes, I know.

Amy Greene: So it was the first daughter and son that Arthur had with. What was your name? Mary. Mary or something. And I remember the one that lived in Brooklyn Heights. Yes. The other ones that really hated her because the mother kept saying home record, home record, home record, home record. She was in fear of that appendage being a home wrecker. She was. She had record. Did it also is it one they wanted to go? Wasn't her. Wasn't her at all. But the kids. That's how they grew up. Home record. Home record.

Interviewer: We were going to travel. We'll just have to ask you about sort of then the sort of ending of Marilyn. Marilyn Monroe Productions and the sort of what happened with Milton and now and you all of you did.

Amy Greene: Interesting. When she came to Milton, she came to us really. We had a small apartment at two Sutton Place South. That was a little better in New York. And at that point, she used to live there. But then she moved next door to 44th. So she came and she said, you have to understand that Arthur is jealous of you and Arthur, and I can't cope with it. So understand that it isn't you and it is in me. So Milton, being the gentleman, the knight in shining armor, said, if that's the way you want it, and a later at the lawyer's office, they were all there. And Mr. Charm Arthur turned to Milton when Milton Milton said, All I want is the money I invested. And everybody said, well, where you're talking about. He said, I'm out of pocket about one hundred and fifty hundred sixty thousand dollars. An author turned on him and said, That's all you want. You can have anything you want. One hundred and sixty thousand. He went on and found this. His lawyer met his lawyers and Milton is sitting there and looked at him and said, Arthur, you're an insensitive schmuck. And got up and walked. Today and during the filming of Misfits. Thank you very much, Eli Wallach tells me this story. At one point she turned on him and you took everything away from me. I am nothing but a bull. And you even took Milton. So.

Interviewer: So after Arthur.

Amy Greene: After Arthur. OK. Now, I'm going to tell you something I've never told anybody else. OK. I'm Cuban. I was suckered by a witch. OK. I dream things that happen and I dreamt. OK, we're in July. Milton is going to photograph the French collections for Life magazine. It's July and I say to him, when I wake up in the morning. I have just dreamt of Marilyn, who is in New York. We know she's in Beverly Hills. And get your ass on a plane and go because she needs you. She need you. In my dreams. I see in my dream she knew. I don't argue. Just are crazy. I've got Sally Kirkland. I've got life. I've got eight million things to do. I'm leaving in a week. I've got to check my cameras. And he's going on and I am sitting there. That's a million. Go to her. Now he focuses in and he looks at me and he says it's a Cuban thing, isn't it? I said, yes. Trust me.

Interviewer: It is news again. This is never going to happen to me. OK.

Amy Greene: All right. So, OK, I'll call her up. So. He called and he said to her, Amy dram, blah, blah, blah, and they're both laughing and she said, Oh, well, come on out, I love you. Of course she was right. And she said, What are you doing? He said, I'm going to go to Paris or do the collections for Life magazine and dot, dot, dot. And she said, well, come and see me on your way back. Bring Amy and, you know, fly over the pole and come and visit me in August. So they kept talking that week. They kept talking the next week we go to Paris. Saturday night we have dinner in Paris with Marlena Dietrich. And we're all at this wonderful restaurant and someone said something about your girlfriend, Marilyn. I don't know this woman. I'm being very defensive about it. So I knew exactly what is. That was Alesia Corning Clark, who is married to the calling clerks. And she said, oh, your girlfriend. Well, you know that she's due to commit suicide. I said, Alicia, don't go there. Back off. We're had a beautiful dinner party in a beautiful restaurant. I'm not going to tell you anything about Marilyn. I don't like you. You're not gonna get into my head. Forget about the next one. The day following, we, Milton and I drive to Fontainebleau. We have our little picnic, the two of us. And when we come back to Paris, it's four o'clock in the afternoon initiative. It hit the fan. She's dead. How do you think Milton feel? How do you think I feel? The woman called and nobody paid attention. I couldn't look at a photograph of her, a picture of her for five years. Which is too heartbreaking. Couldn't hear. Sometimes they play a song or something and turn it right off. Took me a long time to get over it.

Interviewer: Did you stay friends during this time of all the turmoil with Milton and Arthur and all that? You and her, where you.

Amy Greene: Yes. We saw each other again as a hairdresser, which was then Lily. Dasha. But Kenneth was a hairdresser and my hairdresser. So we always met. And at the opening of The Prince and the Showgirl at Radio City Musical. I was out to here with our second son, Anthony. I was a vision in coral chiffon. I must have had 500 yards of coral chiffon. I mean, I walked in like a sailing ship under full sale. And she came right up to me and she put her hands on my. Tell me. How do you feel? I said, it's tough to sit down with this thing. She said, I'll never know the feeling. I said, just don't worry. You can always adopt. Can you imagine you're adopted?

Interviewer: I mean, could you imagine?

Amy Greene: No.

Interviewer: Otherwise, with all of this, she doesn't seem a person who could have easily absorbed a child.

Amy Greene: Now, that was all a fantasy. Everybody is fantasy. She had a job. Milton had a fantasy. You wanted to be a French farmer, live on a French dairy farm. I mean, everybody with somebody else wants to go around the world. You know, everybody. Everybody has a fantasy in life.

Interviewer: So you're you're surrounded by nothing but so much. Marilyn, in your life then Norman and Milton Cook, Norman Mailer, Milton collaborate on that one, which I like to talk a little bit about.

Amy Greene: Not Larry Schiller was the first Larry show and the Marilyn that the photographer's doing. The first Marilyn. And that's how Norman. Well, I met Norman years and years ago at Susan Blanchard, who isn't married to to Henry Fonda. I mean, how far back do you want to go?

Interviewer: I just think Norman's take on Meryl and I'm interested in your reaction.

Amy Greene: He never met her.

Interviewer: Yeah, he's.

Amy Greene: He's know you never met her. And what he got was hearsay and the stories, you know, but he fell in love with her again, a guy. And again, he never said anything derogative about her in any way. He protected her there again. It's a shame, everyone, that that. Well, you say something very interesting and you're a little in your little film saw in your film about Doug, the two people that are waiting and she's always late. And yet when she comes on the set, nobody says, what, are you crazy? Where were you for two hours? Nobody says a word, but she goes on, That's it. Don't ask me why was a creature unto itself. And Norman is a genius. And he would have had the most riotous, passionate, lustful roll in the hay. I mean, these two human beings would have been at it like jack rabbits morning, noon and night.

Interviewer: I think you're right.

Amy Greene: Your Honor.

Interviewer: He thinks he's had to read it had he met her. He's he's a he's a he has a guardian angel. And the guardian angels kind of keep him from what shouldn't have happened as opposed to what should have happened. But he said. But he said that he thinks that she thought he would have had as bad a time with her as Miller, really. But he's sure to like me.

Amy Greene: And I know because Norman is I don't know. I mean, is sexing also never was. I mean, going to bed. Mean, please. Oh, my God. Help us and save us a lump.

Interviewer: I agree with you. I think Merman's darling.

Amy Greene: Norman is the sexiest guy in the world. He came out. Go away. I don't want to have anything to do with you. Go away. I know your wife. Go, go, go. But he's adorable and he's funny. And he is your great sense of humour. And she loved to laugh. James left with Arthur.

Interviewer: Great missed opportunity. Norman and me.

Amy Greene: Wow.

Interviewer: Or no, I don't. No. Just one more thing. The one thing, again, as I look around the room and look again at these photographs that I just so love these photographs of Milton's my and the couple of pictures of them together that I love. The one of them in the crowd coming off the plane. There is a real there's a sameness about them. There is something you look at it and you can understand these two people together.

Amy Greene: You see his right arm around her coming out of the plane. That's the whole thing right here. She wasn't walking along. She was walking with Milton. And there you see it.

Interviewer: Extraordinary collaboration by.

Amy Greene: Extraordinary collaboration. These do you. And these were born to meet and work and have a good time, which they did.

Interviewer: And how wonderful to have someone like you there in the middle of that.

Amy Greene: I was having a fine time. I didn't mind one way or the other. You know, she was never. Oh, God. Let's go to the movies. OK, let's go shopping. OK, let's do this. OK. I mean, she never was a problem. Did you make of it? Yes. I was like Mother Superior. But I would take her shopping and I wouldn't buy one cashmere sweater. I buy a dozen cashmere sweaters. And she was. Oh my God, look at this.

Interviewer: Was she didn't have a great sense of style.

Amy Greene: She had no sense of style whatsoever. Her fashion statement was a terry cloth robe. That's what she understood. That's why she looked adorable in a terrycloth robe.

Interviewer: And she wore it better than.

Amy Greene: She wore it better than anybody. That was it. Audrey Hepburn. That's another story.

Interviewer: That will stop. Amy, thank you so much.

Amy Greene
Interview Date:
2006-04-04
Runtime:
0:53:31
Keywords:
American Archive of Public Broadcasting GUID:
cpb-aacip-504-8s4jm24046, cpb-aacip-504-416sx64q1z
MLA CITATIONS:
"Amy Greene, Marilyn Monroe: Still Life." American Masters Digital Archive (WNET). 04 Apr. 2006, https://www.pbs.org/wnet/americanmasters/archive/interviews/638
APA CITATIONS:
(2006, April 04). Amy Greene, Marilyn Monroe: Still Life. [Video]. American Masters Digital Archive (WNET). https://www.pbs.org/wnet/americanmasters/archive/interviews/638
CHICAGO CITATIONS:
"Amy Greene, Marilyn Monroe: Still Life." American Masters Digital Archive (WNET). April 04, 2006. Accessed July 06, 2022 https://www.pbs.org/wnet/americanmasters/archive/interviews/638

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