Marilyn Monroe was the 1950s sex symbol everyone knew and loved. She acted in some of Hollywood’s most successful movies of her time, such as Some Like It Hot and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. Her success was sadly short-lived due to her early death, and many have since wondered to whom she left her large fortune.
Did Marilyn Monroe have any children?
Monroe was married three times but did not have any children.
She married her first husband James Dougherty in 1942 aged just 16, in a bid to avoid returning to an orphanage.
Whilst with Dougherty, she was a housewife but moved in with his parents when he left to serve in the Marines before their divorce in 1946.
After gaining some attention as a model and actress, Monroe married baseball player Joe DiMaggio in 1954.
However, the marriage was short-lived, and nine months later the pair announced their divorce.
After her relationship with DiMaggio, Monroe became involved with playwright Arthur Miller.
The couple married shortly after in 1956, and the actress converted to Judaism.
They remained together until their divorce in 1961, only a short while before her death.
Monroe did not have any children with her husbands, however, she is reported as having had a number of miscarriages throughout her life.
The year after her divorce from Miller, she died of an overdose of barbiturates on August 4, 1962.
The actress had struggled with her mental health in the years leading up to her death, as well as substance abuse.
On the day of her death, she had spent time with her publicist, her housekeeper, the photographer Lawrence Schiller and her psychiatrist Ralph Greenson.
According to reports, on the night of Monroe’s death, Greenson asked her housekeeper to remain with her overnight to keep her company.
However, in the late evening, the housekeeper saw her bathroom light was on, but Monroe was unresponsive and appeared to have locked herself in.
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Her death was ruled a suicide but conspiracy theories have suggested various people could have murdered Monroe, though no evidence has been found to support these claims.
Who did Marilyn Monroe leave her fortune to?
Monroe’s net worth was around $20million (£15.4million) and her films had grossed around $200million (£154million,) so there was a great deal of estate to be shared out.
In terms of her will, Monroe signed her will 10 days before her divorce from playwright Arthur Miller was finalised, and was filed for probate 13 days after her death.
The will was contested by one of her business managers almost immediately, but it was established as a valid last will and testament shortly after.
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Monroe split her money between a number of people, with quite a hefty sum going to her “mentor and acting coach” Lee Strasberg.
He inherited all her personal items and clothing, as well as 75 percent of her residuary estate, which was anything left after her main bequests.
Monroe left $10,000 (£8,100) to her half-sister Bernie Miracle and the same to her personal secretary May Reis.
She also left $5,000 (£4,050) each to her friends, Norman and Hedda Rosten, while $100,000 (£81,040) was left to be held in trust for her mother Gladys Baker and Xenia Chekhov, the surviving spouse of her friend and acting coach Michael Chekhov.
Baker was to receive $5,000 (£4,050) a year, while Xenia was to receive $2,500 (£2,025) a year, and the balance of the trust was to go to her New York psychiatrist Dr Marianne Kris after Baker and Chekhov died.
According to the will, this was “to be used by her for the furtherance of the work of such psychiatric institutions or groups as she shall elect” rather than for Kris’ own use.
Everything else in the residuary estate was to be divided so her personal secretary would receive an extra $40,000 (£23,430), and the rest would be split between Kris and Strasberg in a 25/75 split.
Kris was to use this money for the same reason as the other funds, but in the end it was Strasberg’s second wife, Anna, who benefited the most from the inheritance.
Strasberg died in 1982, and his second wife, who Monroe had reportedly only met once, inherited his 75 percent share plus all her belongings, which meant she had almost $20million (£15.4million).
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