‘Blonde’ director responds to backlash over Marilyn Monroe film

Andrew Dominick, the director of the controversial Marilyn Monroe biopic Blonde, spoke out about the film's backlash.  (Photo: Sylvain Lefevre/WireImage)

Andrew Dominick, the director of the controversial Marilyn Monroe biopic Blonde, spoke out about the film’s backlash. (Photo: Sylvain Lefevre/WireImage)

Andrew Dominik, the director of the controversial Marilyn Monroe biopic Blondespeaks out about the backlash against the Netflix film.

During an appearance at the Red Sea International Film Festival in Saudi Arabia, Dominik proclaimed that American audiences “hated the movie,” which starred Ana de Armas as the iconic movie star. The Australian director claimed this was because the public strictly wanted to see Monroe appear “empowered” on screen.

“Now we live in a time where it’s important to present women as empowered, and they want to reinvent Marilyn Monroe as an empowered woman. That’s what they want to see,” Dominik said, according to the beloved movie star to The Hollywood Reporter. “And if you don’t show them that, it upsets them.”

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Dominik went on to say that those who criticized the film, based on Joyce Carol Oates’ 2000 novel of the same name, must have felt it exploited their memories of the actress, who died of a drug overdose aged 36 in 1962.

“Which is kind of weird because she’s dead. The movie makes no difference one way or the other,” Dominik said. “What they really mean is that the movie tapped into their memory of her, their image of her, which is fair enough. But that’s the whole idea of ​​the film. It’s trying to take the iconography of her life and put it in the service of something else, it’s trying to take things that you’re familiar with and turn the meaning inside out. But it is what they don’t want to see.”

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Despite the negative feedback, Dominik clarified that he was actually “really happy” that the film had “outraged so many people” because he considers it the artist’s responsibility to evoke passionate reactions from their work. He talked about that until adulthood in the 1980s, when “insulting your audience was a solemn duty, twisting them out of complacency about things.”

Dominik, who claimed that “tens of millions of people” watched the film on Netflix, ended by saying that he believes American film is becoming “more conservative.” He compared the current state of cinema to bedtime stories, explaining that people want a story with a predictable ending.

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“I don’t want to do bedtime stories,” he concluded.

Blonde has generated considerable controversy over its NC-17 rating and its handling of rape, abortion, and abortion. Back in October, model and author Emily Ratajkowski called out the film in a TikTok post, saying it was responsible for “fetishizing female pain,” Yahoo Entertainment previously reported.

“So I’ve heard a lot about this Marilyn Monroe movie, Blonde, which I haven’t seen yet, but I’m not surprised to hear that it’s another movie that fetishizes female pain, even in death,” Ratajkowski explained to the camera. “We love to fetishize female pain. Look at Amy Winehouse. Look at Britney Spears. Look at the way we’re obsessed [Princess] Diana’s death. Look at how we’re obsessed with dead girls and serial killers. See possibly CSI episode, and it’s this insane fetishization of female pain and death.”

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