Marilyn Monroe's estate has come to the defense of actor Ana de Armas, who faced criticism online over her accent in the trailer for the Netflix biopic "Blonde."
Two of the leaders of the entertainment company that oversees Monroe's estate said in statements Tuesday that they support the decision to cast de Armas in the movie, an NC-17 psychodrama scheduled for release next month.
"It’s thrilling to see all of the different portrayals of her by celebrities and actors from Kim Kardashian to Michelle Williams and now Ana De Armas," said Nick Woodhouse, Authentic Brands Group president and chief marketing officer.
"There are no rules when it comes to how an artist can honor her legacy. We embrace new interpretations of Marilyn that pay homage to her iconic star power, beauty and humanity, and bring her into relevant cultural conversations."
Kardashian wore Monroe’s famed “Happy Birthday, Mr. President” gown to the Met Gala in May. Williams played Monroe in the 2011 film “My Week with Marilyn,” earning an Oscar nomination for her performance.
Marc Rosen, the president of the entertainment division at Authentic Brand Groups, said: "Marilyn Monroe is a singular Hollywood and pop culture icon that transcends generations and history. 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," Rosen added.
The statements from the estate were first reported by Variety.
The trailer for "Blonde" was released last week, drawing equal parts praise and scrutiny online — some of it from social media users who said that de Armas, 34, does not sound like the legendary star of "Gentlemen Prefer Blondes" and "The Seven Year Itch."
"Blonde" was adapted from a fictionalized novel of the same title by author Joyce Carol Oates. The movie was shot largely in black-and-white and directed by Andrew Dominik, who made the violent crime dramas "Chopper" and "Killing Them Softly."
De Armas, who has appeared in the films "Knives Out" and "No Time to Die," said she spent nearly a year working on her accent for "Blonde." She told The Times of London that "it took me nine months of dialect coaching and practicing and some ADR” [re-recording].
"It was a big torture, so exhausting," she added.