"Living her life like a candle in the wind," may have ended her life at 36, but soon Norma Jean (aka Marilyn Monroe) might have a whole new career, some 49 years after her death. While many have tried to keep the iconic image of the 50s star alive through merchandising, no one will have gone as far as Jamie Salter and his company AuthenticBrands Group. Encouraged by the number of MM's Facebook followers, now close to 400,000, Salter is working on creating a "Digital Monroe."
Apparently the dead celebrity game is bigger business than those still alive and well. Over the past year, even with Lady Gaga, Beyoncé, Madonna and Jay-Z each earning $50+ million, Michael Jackson's estate pulled in more than all four - combined! And out of Forbes' list of top-earning dead celebrities, the top three earned close to what today's top artists are making.
Top-Three Dead Celebrity Earners
Remaining "the" role model emulated by every female sex symbol today, Hollywood's most famous pin-up girl appears to be still working it. And under the auspices of AuthenticBrands, she soon she will be forging new ground into the 21st Century. According to a Bloomberg report, dealmaker Salter who already owns the rights to the Bob Marley's brand has gone into partnership with Anna Strasberg, wife of the late, famed acting coach to literally resurrect Monroe to star in a new movie.
The unheard of comeback with be a first for a dead movie star, even though a failed earlier commercial attempt was made for the 1997 Super Bowl. The 60-second spot introduced Fred Astaire dancing with a Dirt Devil vacuum cleaner. At the time, most viewers and critics expressed revulsion, and the spot was labeled as one of the worst Super Bowl ads ever. Salter doesn't see the same misfortune happening to Monroe's image, if he tackles the project from a high-quality artistic perspective.
His plan is to actually star a digital version of Monroe in a full-length feature film using the high-tech digital media equipment available today. Currently talking with the Creative Artists Agency in Los Angeles, his firm wants to create Monroe's image using CGI (computer generated imagery) which is an enhanced version of animation. Similar techniques were used to pair 60-year old Jeff Bridges with his 30-year old junior self in Tron: Legacy this past year.
Tron starring 30-yr old & 60-yr old Jeff Bridges
According to Salter, while a wall use to exist between celebrities and fans in the past, "in the 21st Century, that wall's disappeared." Social media is a medium that has helped bridge the connection, providing a star's followers greater access. And banking on how one actress can still attract hundreds of thousands to a fan page almost a half-century after her death - this is surely testimony that a "Digital Monroe" has a very good shot at going "boffo" at the box office once again!
Now Starring, Digital Monroe!