Marilyn Monroe’s zodiac sign made her Hollywood’s ‘Blonde’ icon

Marilyn Monroe’s zodiac sign made her Hollywood’s ‘Blonde’ icon

Blonde bombshell Marilyn Monroe’s career continues to be explosive decades after her death.

The rise and fall of the 1950s icon is the focus of a new Netflix biopic perfectly titled “Blonde,” starring Ana de Armas in the titular role. The film premieres on September 28th and is based on director Andrew Dominik’s adaptation of Joyce Carol Oates’s 2000 novel of the same name which charts Monroe’s untimely passing at the age of 36.

Such was Monroe’s beauty and the collective worship of it, that Life Magazine wrote, “Her death has diminished the loveliness of the world in which we live.” Now, nearly sixty years after her death, “Blonde” seeks to capture some of that loveliness and tell her story anew.

A fictionalized account of Monroe’s life and an “experiential portrait” of her psyche, the film has courted controversy as it is the first in Netflix history to earn an NC-17 rating for a scene in which de Amras as Monroe is sexually assaulted during an audition. “Blonde” was produced by Brad Pitt and co-stars Adrien Brody as Henry Miller and Bobby Cannavale as Joe Dimaggio, two of Monroe’s three husbands.

This image released by Netflix shows Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe in
Ana de Armas, a Taurus, plays Marilyn Monroe in the new film “Blonde.”
AP

During the filming of “Blonde,” De Armas, who previously starred in “Blade Runner,” “James Bond: No Time to Die” and “Deep Water” with former flame Ben Affleck, was 36, the same age as Monroe at the time of her death and was so connected to the actress that she felt she was haunted on set.

“I think she was happy,” De Armas told reporters at the Venice Film Festival, according to Reuters. “She would also throw things off the wall sometimes and get mad if she didn’t like something.”

In honor of the latest retelling of Monroe’s life and times, we are taking a look at the birth chart of the most famous blonde to mine for meaning in the the stars that made and unmade her.

A song of air and fire

American actress, singer, model and sex symbol Marilyn Monroe.
As a Leo rising with an Aquarius moon, what Marilyn Monroe projected was often at odds with what she truly felt.
Corbis via Getty Images

Born Norma Jeane Baker on June 1, 1926 in Los Angeles, California, Monroe’s sun was in the mutable, communicable air sign of Gemini, her moon in the fixed space cowboy air sign of Aquarius and her ascendant in proud, pronounced, Leo.

The rising sign or ascendant is the first impression we make on others and heavily colors our public perception. It is how we present but not necessarily who we are. In Monroe’s case. her Leo ascendant was in opposition to her Aquarius moon, suggesting a serious tension between her authentic self and her immediate expression.

Monroe came across to others as an assured, regal Leo and could in turn perform the role of bombshell but she was much, much more and often felt like much, much less. This quality supported both her artistry and her isolation. As Lee Strasberg, creator of the Actors Studio and something of a father figure to Monroe recalls, “I saw that what she looked like was not what she really was, and what was going on inside her was not what was going on outside, and that always means there may be something to work with. In Marilyn’s case, the reactions were phenomenal. She can call up emotionally what is required for a scene. Her range is infinite.”

The confluence of air and fire elements within Monroe’s birth chart make Elton John’s ode to her “Candle in the Wind” all the more apt.

Sun in Gemini

This undated photo shows actress Marilyn Monroe. In late 2012, the FBI has released a new version of files it kept on Monroe that reveal the names of some of her acquaintances who had drawn concern from government officials and members of her entourage over their suspected ties to communism.
Marilyn Monroe’s Gemini sun made her highly adaptable and a clever wielder of language.
AP

Gemini is the zodiac sign of duality and that energy is absolutely distilled in Monroe who has at once profoundly lonely and the most wanted woman in the world, an aspirational and cripplingly insecure beauty, and as the trailer for “Blonde” asserts, a woman “watched by all and seen by none.” Gemini rules language and natives are clever, prone to making light of heavy matters and original turns of phrase.

Monroe was no exception, in interviews she belies the veneer of a breathy, witless beauty by coming out swinging with leveling one liners and a heavy dose of self awareness. Geminis are hungry for knowledge, curious about everything and often make for voracious readers and writers, Monroe herself was a poet and favored the works of Russian masters like Dostoevsky and Chekhov, preferences mocked and even doubted by the press during her lifetime.

A 1953 portrait of Marilyn Monroe.
Literary and curious, Marilyn Monore wrote poetry and loved the works of Dostoevsky and Chekhov.
Michael Ochs Archives

The mind of a Gemini is vivid though often fragmented, their attention easily scattered. This makes them dynamic and while their imaginations are limitless, their grasp on reality is tenuous. Volatile and mercurial, Geminis are prone to instability and anxiety, two consistent pain points of Monroe’s.

Interestingly, Monroe’s troubled and absent mother, Gladys Mortensen was also a Gemini sun. The shadows of her mental illness were felt deeply by her daughter who feared she would echo the same anguish.

Neptune in the first house

Marilyn Monroe gets tied into a corset.
The influence of Neptune, the planet of dreams, delusions and altered states was prominently placed in Monroe’s birth chart.
Corbis / Splash News

The first house is the house of the self and any planets placed there will be hyper present in the personality. Monroe had Neptune, planet of fantasy, dreams, addiction, anesthesia, film, the cultural unconsciousness, ghosts and escape in the first house. In many ways, Monroe is the perfect crystallization of Neptune themes; she is the illusion and the immovable icon, an addict and an optimist.

This planetary placement also helps to explain how and why Monroe could beautifully deliver the line, “It’s all make believe, isn’t it?” without hesitation or irony. The presence of Neptune also serves to explain why Monroe continues to be a source of intrigue, mystery and speculation years after her death. She is in many ways, Neptune’s bride, a beautiful haunting, the ultimate escape artist, an ever shifting image.

Ana de Armas speaks to the specter of Monroe within “Blonde,” “I wasn’t in character all the time. But I felt that. I was living that. I felt that heaviness and that weight in my shoulders. And I felt that sadness. She was all I thought about. She was all I dreamed about. She was all I talked about… It was beautiful. “

Moon in Aquarius in the seventh house of partnership

Actress Marilyn Monroe wears an embroidered robe that reads
Monroe’s Aquarius moon is indicative of an absent mother figure and the need for personal freedom
Michael Ochs Archives

There is a cool and logical remove to an Aquarius moon, more cerebral than emotional their lived experience is not unlike observing life from a white, marbled sky tower full of modernist furniture and stainless steel appliances. Its’ chilly and true companionship is rarely found or sought.

In astrology, the moon indicates our instincts, needs, subconscious mind and the ways we were and were not nourished as children. Monroe’s moon was in the fixed air sign of Aquarius, symbolized, quite poetically, by the star tarot card. An Aquarius moon indicates an absent or otherwise absorbed maternal influence and Monroe’s mother, who suffered from paranoid schizophrenia and was inconsistently involved in her daughter’s early life, fulfills that archetype.


Astrology 101: Your guide to the stars


Perhaps because they learn early to fend for themselves and fear dependence of any kind, there’s an intense need for freedom with an Aquarius moon, This may be why Monroe had three marriages and many flings but never found her footing in committed relationships. It was not that she was incapable of reciprocity, it was that the bounds of a committed relationships limited her professionally and personally. This is a lunar placement that needs space to expand and experiment and to feel utterly unbound by convention. As she herself wrote according to Vanity Fair, “I have always been deeply terrified to really be someone’s wife since I know from life one cannot love another, ever, really.”

There is a cool and logical remove to an Aquarius moon, more cerebral than emotional their lived experience is not unlike observing life from a white, marbled sky tower full of modernist furniture and stainless steel appliances. Its’ chilly and true companionship is rarely sought or found. Monroe confessed in a notebook discovered after her death, ““Alone!!!!!!! I am alone I am always alone no matter what.”

American actress Marilyn Monroe (1926 - 1962) rides in a car with her husband, the American playwright Arthur Miller.
Monroe’s third husband, Arthur Miller was also a double air sign with an Aquarius moon.
Time & Life Pictures/Getty Image

Interestingly, Monroe met her lunar match in her third husband, the playwright Arthur Miller who also shared this placement. An Aquarius moon values intelligence and exchange and it tracks that Monroe would feel intellectually seen and validated by Miller of whom she once said, “He wouldn’t have married me if I had been nothing but a dumb blonde.” Yet the same emotional objectivity and cerebral synergy that initially drew Monroe and Miller together would eventually lead to their undoing.

While in England with Miller, Monroe found a cache of notes that the playwright has been making about her. According to Biography.com, “The exact words she read are unknown, but they related that Miller was disappointed by their marriage and sometimes found Monroe embarrassing.” Being studied when she finally felt safe enough to be seen, proved to be an acute and insurmountable betrayal for the actress.

Chiron and Venus

American actress, singer, model and sex symbol Marilyn Monroe.
The placement of Marilyn Monroe’s Chiron in the tenth house suggests her pain was always meant to be public.
Corbis via Getty Images

In astrology, Chiron represents the wound we must heal or knot we must unfurl in order to actualize within our lifetime. Monroe’s Chiron was in her tenth house of career and public image. Acclaimed astrologer Elise Wells of Planet Poetica notes of this aspect, “Mariyn’s wounds, dealing with safety, security, and wanting to feel at home in her own skin and in the the world she inhabits, are highly visible and relate directly to her vocation.”

Again we see the theme of pain serving Monroe’s artistry while destabilizing her personally. Monroe’s Venus, planet of love, attachment and attraction was in the hot and heavy, leap before looking sign of Aries indicating she was impulsive in love. The position of this planet in the house of the public eye or world’s stage supported her love affairs being followed by, and turned to fodder for, a hungry audience.

THE SEVEN YEAR ITCH, Marilyn Monroe (in a dress by William Travilla),
Monroe’s Venus in Aries made her an ardent and impulsive lover.
©20thCentFox/Courtesy Everett C

Interestingly, Monroe had Chiron conjunct Venus, an aspect shared by Ana de Armas. As astrologer Alyssa Landers explains, “Venus-Chiron aspects in a birth chart… indicate a profound inner struggle when it comes to self-esteem, love and relationships. Though this person may try to quell their hurt at any cost as they cope with issues of feeling lovable, at the same time they have tremendous difficulty accepting love from others due to the intense fear of rejection (abandonment) in early life.

Similarly, the person’s appearance and public image are both romanticized (Venus) and rejected (Chiron) by others, leading to an intense contradiction the person must learn to cope with. So there’s fear (Chiron) not only of relationship (Venus) but of the power of their own attractiveness. As a result, the loneliness that accompanies a Venus-Chiron aspect can be profound, as the person turns to isolation as a coping mechanism. Think: ‘Insecure Sexpot.’”

This image released by Netflix shows Ana de Armas as Marilyn Monroe in
The birth charts of Ana de Armas and Marilyn Monroe share the challenging aspect of Venus conjunct Chiron.
AP

The paradox of this aspect and the visage of the “Insecure Sexpot” profoundly affected and in some ways defined Monroe, and it seems fated that de Armas, who shares it, would be able to channel Monroe in a profound and profoundly authentic way. She said of the experience, “I did this movie to push myself… to make other people change their opinion about me. This movie changed my life.” In this sense and through these scenes, Monroe continues to defy, influence and fascinate and de Armas in her way, pays tribute through her own transformation.

Astrologer Reda Wigle researches and irreverently reports back on planetary configurations and their effect on each zodiac sign. Her horoscopes integrate history, poetry, pop culture and personal experience. She is also an accomplished writer who has profiled a variety of artists and performers, as well as extensively chronicled her experiences while traveling. Among the many intriguing topics she has tackled are cemetery etiquette, her love for dive bars, Cuban Airbnbs, a “girls guide” to strip clubs and the “weirdest” foods available abroad.