The Marilyn Monroe craze technically started last year with Michelle Williams’s Oscar-nominated turn as the iconic
bombshell in
My Week With Marilyn, but all signs point to 2012 as the commemorative year for the tragic actress. On the 50th anniversary of Monroe’s death in 1962, the fashion, beauty and culture worlds are coming together to celebrate the legendary starlet. Here’s our curated round-up of all things Marilyn in 2012.

1. TV: Triple threat

Proving her life is insatiable fodder to be infinitely dissected and reimagined in all forms of showbiz—silver screen, small screen, and now, onstage—NBC’s new hit show
Smash , is incredibly meta in its treatment of Marilyn and the inherent rise and falls of fame. It traces the behind-the-scenes process of staging a Broadway musical, based on the short but tempestuous life of Marliyn Monroe. The show premiered in early February and stars
American Idol alum Katharine McPhee and real-life Broadway vet Megan Hilty vying for the coveted lead role as the fabled bleached blonde.

2. FILM: Eternal cover girl

As an homage to the vivacious bombshell’s Hollywood pedigree, the Cannes Film Festival selected Marilyn Monroe as the face for the world-class festival’s 65th anniversary this May. Conjuring a collective déjà vu moment, the poster—seen everywhere, but featured most prominently at the famous Grand Palais on La Croisette—features Marilyn seductively blowing out a candle on a birthday cake.

3. BEAUTY: The Marilyn look

Earlier this year M.A.C. Cosmetics unveiled plans for a special makeup collection inspired by the creamy skin and luscious red lips that defined Marilyn Monroe’s signature beauty. The limited-edition line (in partnership with Authentic Brands Group) includes nearly 30 products, from eye shadows and liner to nail lacquer and lipstick (in, as expected, retro red and hot pink shades). Look for it in stores this October.

Click here for ways to get the iconic Marilyn Monroe crimson pout.

For culturally related Marilyn Monroe events, read on…
4. BOOK: Bombshell imprimatur

If a person’s private possessions reveal the most intimate details of their lives, it should be no surprise that historian and producer Keya Morgan—owner of the largest Monroe collection in the world—penned a Marilyn tell-all due out in July. Based on 10 years of scrupulous research,
Marilyn Monroe: Murder on Fifth Helena Drive, promises to reveal the truth of the actress’s still-questionable death on Aug. 5, 1962, when she was found in the bed of her Brentwood, California home with an empty bottle of sleeping pills by her side. The book features never-before-seen photos, declassified government documents and exclusive interviews conducted by Morgan, who bought hundreds of items, including much of Marilyn’s private library, at the only Marilyn Monroe estate auction to date, held by Christie’s on Oct. 27, 1999. Literally acquainted with the late star’s private property, Morgan—who owns large portions of the estates of her second husband Joe DiMaggio and close friend, Marlon Brando—is directing and producing a documentary based on the book, also slated for release this year.

5. EXHIBITION: Marilyn throughout the lenses

The face that’s worth at least a thousand pictures is the subject of a globetrotting museum exhibition that’s coming to Japan in September.
Marilyn: Celebrating an American Icon, organized by Sairally Fine Arts & Consulting and toured by International Arts & Artists, commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Marilyn’s (née Norma Jean Baker) death. The exhibit just wrapped up its first run in São Paolo’s National Film Museum and will travel to the Leonardo Da Vinci Museum in
Tokyo between Sept. 15 and Dec. 17 2012. Composed of 122 photographs by more than 50 artists—the bevy of shutterbug royalty includes Andy Warhol, Cecil Beaton and Henri Cartier-Bresson—who snapped the vivacious and eternally camera-ready starlet throughout her legendary, albeit fleeting career.

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