Related Video: Watch the trailer for 'My Week with Marilyn'
It was 1962 and Schiller, on assignment for Look magazine, captured a near-naked Monroe as she frolicked by a shimmering swimming pool. In one photo, she holds a towel to her chest as she climbs out of the pool, smiling softly at the camera, one leg pointed towards the sky. But before you start assuming that the male photographer talked a vulnerable Monroe into shedding more than she wanted to, check out some of what Schiller reveals in an adaption of his memoir, Marilyn & Me: A Photographer's Memories, excerpts of which are included along with the photos in Vanity Fair.
According to Schiller, Monroe hatched a plan to make their shoot a lot sexier by offering to jump in the pool with her swimsuit on, and emerge without it. "If I do come out of the pool with nothing on, I want your guarantee that when your pictures appear on the covers of magazines Elizabeth Taylor is not anywhere in the same issue," she insisted. Monroe was only being paid $100,000 for what would be her last film, "Something's Got to Give," (she died before it was finished) while Taylor was collecting a cool $1 million for "Cleopatra."
Despite her beauty and movie-star status, Monroe began revealing her unhappiness to Schiller, pointing out that she'd never been nominated for an Oscar, felt her whole life had been one big rejection, and feared she might end up in a mental institution the way her mother had. She also confided her thoughts on becoming a mother... something that never happened.
"I've always wanted a baby," she said. "Having a child, that's always been my biggest fear. I want a child and I fear a child. Whenever it came close, my body said no and I lost the baby," Schiller recounts.
As for being Marilyn Monroe, she simply never felt like she actually was the famous sex symbol. "I never wanted to be Marilyn - it just happened," she also told him. "Marilyn's like a veil I wear over Norma Jeane."
Lizbeth Scordo writes for OMG!