Marilyn & Me

Marilyn & Me: Lawrence Schiller’s Photos of Marilyn Monroe (PHOTOS)

See photos from Lawrence Schiller’s new memoir ‘Marilyn & Me’ taken in the days before the movie star’s death.

Lawrence Schiller

Lawrence Schiller

Lawrence Schiller’s new book, Marilyn & Me, features some never-before-seen images of screen icon Marilyn Monroe’s last days. See photos from her infamous poolside shoot on the set of her last film, Something’s Got to Give, and read excerpts of Schiller’s personal recollections of the star.

Lawrence Schiller

A self-portrait of photographer Lawrence Schiller, who was 23 years old the first time he was hired to take pictures of Marilyn Monroe.


"When I pulled in to the 20th Century-Fox studios parking lot in Los Angeles in my station wagon in April 1960, I kept telling myself that this was just another assignment, just another pretty girl that I was going to photograph. But in fact it wasn't just another assignment, and she wasn't just a pretty girl. ... In a few minutes, I'd be meeting the Marilyn Monroe, face-to-face, on the set of Let's Make Love."


Text excerpted from Marilyn & Me: A Photographer's Memories (Nan A. Talese / Doubleday).

Lawrence Schiller

"Eager to begin photographing Marilyn, I got to the set early the next day only to find everyone standing around waiting. Marilyn was in her dressing room, the door closed. ... I soon discovered that she followed her own clock. It seemed not to matter to her that there was a schedule or that her delays cost the studio more money. As I would learn, she considered herself underpaid and had been battling Fox for years."

Text excerpted from Marilyn & Me: A Photographer's Memories (Nan A. Talese / Doubleday).

Lawrence Schiller

Marilyn Monroe in her dressing room with Paula Strasberg, the wife of Marilyn's drama coach, Lee Strasberg.

"In the bungalow, where Paula practiced lines of dialogue with Marilyn, I captured their relationship. Marilyn would often sprawl out on the couch wearing a white robe, her bare legs tucked up under her. One day, she sat there as Paula walked into my frame to put something on the coffee table. It was already covered with food and a cake. The composition was perfect, and I pressed the shutter release. The picture said it all: Paula was there to serve Marilyn."

Text excerpted from Marilyn & Me: A Photographer's Memories (Nan A. Talese / Doubleday).

Lawrence Schiller

"In May 1962, Paris Match assigned me to photograph Marilyn in Something's Got to Give, in which she would co-star with Dean Martin and Wally Cox. ... When I looked over the script...it didn't take me very long to find the one scene I was sure I wanted to shoot: when Marilyn jumps into a swimming pool to seduce Dean Martin, who is looking down at her from a balcony."

Later, Marilyn surprised Schiller with a plan for the pool scene. "I've been thinking about this scene. I'll have the bathing suit on when I jump in, but I'm thinking about coming out without it."

Text excerpted from Marilyn & Me: A Photographer's Memories (Nan A. Talese / Doubleday).

Lawrence Schiller

"At poolside Marilyn took off her blue bathrobe, hiding her body as she slid into the water. A few moments later, when she raised herself from the water, I could see that her panties were gone. She'd done it! And she was having a lot of fun."

Text excerpted from Marilyn & Me: A Photographer's Memories (Nan A. Talese / Doubleday).

Lawrence Schiller

"Marilyn...knew she would be able to reject the ones she didn't like. Once I got the proof sheets back from the lab, I had no trouble returning to the set to see her. When it came to looking at photographs of herself, Marilyn was all business. I gave her the small contact sheets and a magnifying glass. The images were so small that it was very difficult for her to see them, so sometimes she'd cross out an image with a red marker just because she couldn't make it out."

Text excerpted from Marilyn & Me: A Photographer's Memories (Nan A. Talese / Doubleday).

Lawrence Schiller

"I flew to New York over the weekend to make a deal at Life. The picture editor, Dick Pollard, didn't like my conditions at first, but seeing that he could do nothing about them and liking the photos enough to want to run five or six pages of them, he agreed. ... Dick nodded and said Life would publish the following week on June 16, which would become the worldwide release date of the photos. I had a deal, and I had my first Life cover."

Text excerpted from Marilyn & Me: A Photographer's Memories (Nan A. Talese / Doubleday).

Lawrence Schiller

Marilyn and the actor Wally Cox in the back of a limo.

"Wally looked at me and said, 'We're going to Mulholland. Why don't you come along?' He meant they were going to Marlow Brando's house, which was on Mulholland Drive above Bel Air. ... Instead of getting into their limo, I said I'd follow in my own car. That would be better, because I'd be able to leave when I wanted to."

"Okay, see you!" Marilyn squealed, and the limo took off, leaving me behind to run as fast as I could to my car in the parking lot. They were not waiting for me, and the fact was that I didn't know where on Mulholland Drive Brando lived."

Text excerpted from Marilyn & Me: A Photographer's Memories (Nan A. Talese / Doubleday).

Lawrence Schiller

Marilyn on her 36th birthday on the set of Something's Got to Give.

"She got no presents. There was more a feeling of gloom than of happiness. And what I noticed was how few people from the studio and among her personal friends were there. I saw Marilyn turn to Whitey Snyder and ask, 'Where is everybody?' It seemed sad. Late afternoon really wasn't the best time to share a birthday cake."

Text excerpted from Marilyn & Me: A Photographer's Memories (Nan A. Talese / Doubleday).

Lawrence Schiller

"On June 8, one week after her birthday, Marilyn was fired from Something's Got to Give. Columnist Sheila Graham broke the story, quoting producer [Henry] Weinstein. 'The studio does not want her anymore. Every time she says she is ill and we have to close down the picture, 104 persons lose a day's pay.' ... The next day, Fox sued Marilyn to recover its damages."

Text excerpted from Marilyn & Me: A Photographer's Memories (Nan A. Talese / Doubleday).

Lawrence Schiller

Marilyn Monroe died in August of 1962. Schiller went to her home to photograph the scene.

"Marilyn's body strapped to a gurney, beneath a coroner's blanket, had been wheeled out a side door. Marilyn -- so alive before my cameras -- was now dead."

Text excerpted from Marilyn & Me: A Photographer's Memories (Nan A. Talese / Doubleday).

Lawrence Schiller

Joe DiMaggio and his son at Marilyn's funeral service.

"Of the pictures I took that day," writes Schiller, "the one that resonated for me was of Joe DiMaggio and his son in his military uniform, at the funeral. The tragedy, love, and unrelenting sadness of the moment were all on the great DiMaggio's grief-stricken face."

Text excerpted from Marilyn & Me: A Photographer's Memories (Nan A. Talese / Doubleday).

Lawrence Schiller

"On Monday morning I went to the Life offices in Beverly Hills to get an advance copy of the magazine. I was stunned to discover that they had used one of my photographs on the cover, the image where she was wearing the golden fur cap with the matching fur surrounding her neck, the picture where she looked like she was breathing in a little more air, the ethereal shot where she looked like an angel."

Text excerpted from Marilyn & Me: A Photographer's Memories (Nan A. Talese / Doubleday).