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Marilyn Monroe Leaves Handprints at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre

On June 26, 1953, Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell cemented their famous names in the forecourt of Grauman’s Chinese Theatre on Hollywood Boulevard.

Marilyn Monroe hands in cement
Marilyn Monroe and Jane Russell leave their handprints at Grauman's Chinese Theatre (UCLA)

As the handprint ceremony was to promote Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, Russell’s block was “brunette” compared to Monroe’s—which she adorned with a rhinestone to dot the “i” in Marilyn, a nod to her musical number “Diamonds Are a Girl’s Best Friend.” (Days later, it was chiseled out by a fan)

The co-stars, who bonded on the set despite rumors to the contrary, complemented each other in coordinating polka-dot dresses with white heels.

“When I was younger, I used to go to Grauman’s Chinese Theatre and try to fit my foot in the prints in the cement there,” recalled Marilyn. “And I’d say ‘Oh, oh, my foots too big. I guess that’s out.’ I did have a funny feeling later when I finally put my foot down into that wet cement, I sure knew what it really meant to me, anything’s possible, almost.”

Gentlemen Prefer Blondes opened at Grauman’s on July 31 with a different kind of publicity stunt: a protest from brunettes and redheads.

Brunettes protest Gentlemen Prefer Blondes
Brunettes and redheads boycott the film (Los Angeles Public Library)


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