Who plays Marilyn Monroe in Blonde? Get to know rising star Ana de Armas

Wondering where you've seen the actress who plays Marilyn Monroe in Blonde before? Ana de Armas has become quite recognizable in the last few years...

image of Ana de Armas who plays Marilyn Monroe in Blonde on a pastel-colored background
(Image credit: Netflix)

Who plays Marilyn Monroe in Blonde, you ask? Stepping into the shoes—or in Kim Kardashian's case, the dress—of the blonde bombshell is no easy feat. The iconic figure is inimitable, but Ana de Armas certainly seems up for the challenge in Netflix's new drama, Blonde, based on the novel by Joyce Carol Oates.

Before the movie was even released, both she and the film received glowing praise—including a 14-minute standing ovation at the Venice Film festival, which certainly bodes very well for the biopic...

"It was a gift for me to play that part," the actress revealed to Byrdie. "It felt incredible, it felt… also very exhausting. It was a lot of hard work to play her in what I think was a really honest way of portraying her. And her life was not simple." But before pressing rewind on the story we all know well, let's first catch up with the actress stepping up to take on the ultimate role of Marilyn Monroe...

Who plays Marilyn Monroe in Blonde?

Ana de Armas is a Cuban-born actress who you'll likely recognize from many famous films including Knives Out, Blade Runner 2049, No Time To Die and The Gray Man, Netflix's alleged biggest budget project to date—where she stars alongside the likes of Chris Evans and Ryan Gosling.

Though she's made her mark in many heart-racing thrillers, she didn't necessarily envision her career taking that particular path.

"The truth is, I never thought I was going to be an action actor. It wasn’t my thing," she confessed in a cover story to Elle.

Ana de Armas Marilyn Monroe transformation

Now though, she's stepping into the world of biopic blockbusters, with Netflix's Marilyn Monroe drama, which garnered an unexpected NC-17 rating from the streaming service.

Her transformation into the beloved Hollywood figure—which took a whopping 3.5 hours of hair and makeup—seemed worthwhile, as the brunette effortlessly captures the late actress' essence and looks like a dead ringer for Monroe in a replica of her famous "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend" pink gown and long gloves.

Describing what it felt like to see herself in the full Marilyn get-up for the first time, in an interview with Today, De Armas said: "I don't even know how to describe it, it was like...you know everyone in the room started crying, I can tell you that. It was very emotional—it felt like she was back or something."

Ana de Armas' eye color

Ana de Armas has hazel-colored eyes, so when she played Marilyn Monroe in the movie Blonde, she wore blue contact lenses.

Marilyn Monroe/Ana de Armas side by side

Ana de Armas truly looks the spitting image of the iconic Some Like It Hot star, channeling everything from Marilyn's makeup secrets to her perfectly quaffed blonde hair.

images of Marilyn Monroe and Ana de Armas playing her side by side in black and white

(Image credit: Getty/Netflix)

images of Marilyn Monroe and Ana de Armas playing her side by side wearing glamorous dresses

(Image credit: Getty/Netflix)

images of Marilyn Monroe and Ana de Armas playing her side by side wearing white dress

(Image credit: Getty/Netflix)

All about that Marilyn Monroe accent controversy

Though De Armas did not step into the Blonde role lightly, critics were quick to pick on her portrayal of Monroe, stating that her Cuban accent conflicted with capturing the late actor's famously breathy tone. 

But you know you've done something right when the Marilyn Monroe Estate—which didn't greenlight the Netflix project—gives its seal of approval

"Any actor that steps into that role knows they have big shoes to fill. Based on the trailer alone, it looks like Ana was a great casting choice as she captures Marilyn’s glamour, humanity and vulnerability. We can’t wait to see the film in its entirety," Marc Rosen, president of entertainment at Authentic Brands Group (ABG), which owns the Marilyn Monroe Estate, said in a statement. 

Ana de Armas boyfriend: who is she dating?

Hollywood aside, De Armas is like any other millennial. Sure, she might've dated Ben Affleck—a "horrible" experience that ultimately caused her to leave L.A.—but it helped her find happiness in New York with her current beau, Tinder exec Paul Boukadakis.

A few of her favorite things? Facetiming with friends, walking her dogs and enjoying a glass of wine. Cheers to that!

Watch Ana de Armas in 'Blonde'

See De Armas' take on the artist formerly known as Norma Jean now that Blonde has premiered on Netflix—looks like it's time for a movie night!

Danielle Valente
Digital News Writer

Need a TV show recommendation? Maybe a few decor tips? Danielle, a digital news writer at Future, has you covered. Her work appears throughout the company’s lifestyle brands, including My Imperfect Life, Real Homes, and woman&home. Mainly, her time is spent at My Imperfect Life, where she’s attuned to the latest entertainment trends and dating advice for Gen Z.

Before her time at Future, Danielle was the editor of Time Out New York Kids, where she got to experience the best of the city from the point of view of its littlest residents. Before that, she was a news editor at Elite Daily. Her work has also appeared in Domino, Chowhound, and amNewYork, to name a few. 

When Danielle’s not writing, you can find her testing out a new recipe, reading a book (suggestions always welcome), or rearranging the furniture in her apartment…again. 

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