Michelle Williams Talks Playing Screen Icon Marilyn Monroe

Ellen DeGeneres interviews Michelle Williams on 'The Ellen DeGeneres Show,' Oct. 2011 Ellen DeGeneres interviews Michelle Williams on 'The Ellen DeGeneres Show,' Oct. 2011

Everyone from Lindsay Lohan to Megan Fox are superfans of the late Marilyn Monroe, but the woman who actually is playing her on screen in “My Week With Marilyn” is former “Dawson’s Creek” actress Michelle Williams. And Ellen DeGeneres might be her biggest fan.

“Was this something that you thought, ‘If this comes up I’ve got to play Marilyn? Because I know I can nail this?’… Because you are so good at it,” Ellen told Michelle, who came by for a taping of Friday’s “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” earlier this week.

“Thanks, no not at all. The thought had never crossed my mind until I read the script. When I read it I said…I knew immediately that I wanted to do it but, I didn’t have an inkling of an idea of how,” the actress replied.

Michelle told Ellen she had a picture of Marilyn on her bedroom wall as a child and it was inspiring.

“I had this picture of her wearing a white dress and she was barefoot running through the grass in Connecticut…That was sort of my primary connection to her. That’s the Marilyn I loved,” Michelle said.

The film follows the story of the rocky interaction between Marilyn and Sir Laurence Olivier (Kenneth Branagh) as they filmed “The Prince and the Showgirl.”

And Marilyn’s fame made it more overwhelming work-wise than other roles Michelle has taken over her career.

“It was. As soon as I said yes, I spent the next 6 months trying to talk myself out of it because it was just so daunting,” she explained. “I was never really a very good student. I didn’t go to school for a terribly long time. I think I’m making up for it now. I worked so hard. I read all the books. I watched the movies. I was obsessed with her. I woke up with her every morning and I went to bed with her every night in a way.”

“My Week With Marilyn,” which also stars Eddie Redmayne and Judi Dench is due out on November 23.

Copyright 2014 by NBC Universal, Inc. All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.