How Audrey Hepburn stole the role from Marilyn Monroe

In our days of examples of the story of Cinderella, in addition to the fairy tale of the same name, quite a decent number of podnakopilos, but “Breakfast at Tiffany” – is, in fact, a variation on this topic: the story of a young girl who jumps out of the pants of childhood and clothes in viscous and stiff things of an adult life. As in the case of Cinderella, the history of Holly Golightly is an example of struggling against oneself and the whole world, the result of which is freedom. Of course, we should not forget that this is a story about self-knowledge and self-admiration. “Breakfast at Tiffany” gives an illustrative example to all women (and men, probably, too), how can you re-open your self and release it beyond the golden cage.

We already had the opportunity to enjoy this book, and therefore today we will talk more about the film, based on its motives. In the review of the book I already said that Truman Capote himself wanted the role of Holly Golightly to be given to his close friend and all the familiar Marilyn Monroe. Now these words sound truly blasphemous! Well, could Marilyn play this role better than Audrey Hepburn, for which this image became really fundamental? But if you read the book and watched the film, or better, if you have an idea of what kind of people were Truman Capote and Marilyn Monroe, then such an odious statement will not seem to you devoid of logic.


Let’s start with what gave us food for thought – that is, directly from the book. What was Holly Golightly? Immediately remember its origin (Western Texas), and the name obtained at birth (Lulamey), is primarily associated with the tribes of the Indians, jumping on wild horses and decorating their heads with feathers of different shades and sizes. Would a refined Audrey have been able to descend as a native inhabitant of those lands? Hardly. Rather for an elegant or naive Frenchwoman, but not a rebel from the southern states of America.

Unlike Audrey, Truman Capote knew Marilyn well, and she also grew up in the south (albeit in California, not Texas) and also had a pseudonym (Norma Gin). But the parallels with Holly Golightly do not end there. Young Marilyn was a depressed child and grew up without parents. At an informed age, like young Holly, Marilyn often spent time in company with a new young man. Soon she started a friendship with an influential agent in Hollywood, who recognized the young creature as a huge potential and helped him to reveal himself to the fullest. Agree, all these details mysteriously coincide with the fate of Holly Golightly described in the book.

The book was filmed in 1961, a year later, Monroe passed away. And to her great regret (presumably), she was never destined to play a role that was written “specifically” for her. Fate is different, it’s probably this role would be the most fundamental in the life of Marilyn Monroe!




Please note that there is no regret in this statement – it’s just a simple statement of what happened. The role went to Audrey Hepburn, and since we have the opportunity to contemplate the final product, it is unlikely that someone will raise a hand to throw a stone towards the decision of the director and crew. But if we dig a bit deeper, we will probably find a logical explanation for this.

So, we already found out that Marilyn Monroe was born Norma Jin from her birth. Such a transformation Truman Capote used not only in his novel, but also in relation to his beloved. As a small Louisian boy Truman wore a different name – Parsons. Like Monroe, he did not even dream of fame and fortune in the future, they both lived on a godforsaken land, so their original image does not fit in with the public image, which they tried on themselves in the status of famous personalities. This detail of his life Capote probably portrayed in the person of Holly Golightly in the novel “Breakfast at Tiffany”, and since we agreed that Monroe was the best suited for this role, it remains only to ascertain the “natural kinship” of these two people and the book character.

And what about Audrey? She is a bird of a completely different flight; The born queen, which has attracted the views of thousands of spectators to television screens for many years. It was her star status that fully corresponded to her own self, without any doubts, as was the case with Marilyn Monroe and Truman Capote.

Now it remains to project this historical background to the image of Cinderella, which we initially noted at the beginning of the reasoning. If we look at the original sources, Cinderella was never a poor and defenseless orphan, tormented by an evil stepmother and a villainous destiny. Initially, the little Cinderella lived with her own father in full prosperity without denying herself anything. Only then did she suffer difficulties, but having overcome them, she was able to create a completely new I, close to the status of a star or a princess, here as you want. So tell me now, whose life path is closer to the story from a fairy tale ?!


Like the “Great Getsby” Scott Fitzgerald, “Breakfast at Tiffany” is based on the foundations of the notorious American Dream. The history of Capote certainly tells about the price of this very dream. But paradoxically, that to embody on the screens this dream was invited to a European star with all the inclinations of inherited aristocracy, because the desire to achieve its American Dream – this is nothing more than to appear real, corporeal, material. But Holly Golightly, like Jay Gatsby or Marilyn Monroe, are just outer shells that do not reflect what’s in their soul. But it was Audrey Hepburn who turned out to be a dream of authenticity, not an imitation, a dream of success, not a defeat …

After the release of the picture on the screens, most critics agreed with Trump Capote: Audrey Hepburn failed the role and she failed to create a full-fledged image of Holly Golightly! But for the sake of justice it is worth noting that, despite the preserved dialogues and scenes from the text, the book and the film “Breakfast at Tiffany” are two completely different works of art. The film turned out to be a pretty bright and colorful picture, the ending of which gives a pleasant and warm hope; The novel, in contrast to the film, was gloomy and pessimistic, sometimes casting fear of the future. From this follows the question: the director tried to film the adaptation of the novel or the picture based on its motives? And if the answer is to the side of the second option, was the director wrong too?



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