Some Like It Hot: Me, Marilyn and the Movie by Tony Curtis
Published October 2009
My copy: Overdrive digital library
In early 1958 legendary director Billy Wilder offered Tony Curtis the chance to star in a new picture. The movie was to be called Some Like It Hot; it went on to become one of the best-loved films of all time. Now, fifty years on from its first release, this is the true story of what really went on behind-the-scenes during the making of the funniest movie of all time, told by one of its leading ‘ladies’.
For the first time, Tony Curtis shares the many as-yet-untold secrets from the set in his own inimitable voice. He speaks frankly about his working relationship with Jack Lemmon and Billy Wilder, as well as his romance with Marilyn Monroe. Here too is the truth behind Monroe’s erratic behaviour, which almost scuppered the production. Featuring many rarely seen photographs from his private collection and numerous personal anecdotes, this is an insider’s account of the making of a Hollywood classic.
This book is one for fans of the movie Some Like It Hot – luckily I am definitely one of those! I first saw the film when I was about 10 years old, and have watched it numerous times since.
This is a quick read, which I whizzed through one Saturday afternoon. It tells the story of Some Like It Hot from start to finish, as Curtis tells us how he got involved, how the rest of the cast was chosen, and how the film was constantly hampered by Marilyn Monroe’s erratic behaviour. While this is often the focal point of the book, there are a lot of other interesting anecdotes too about how they made the film, including Lemmon and Curtis’s costumes and make-up. Curtis can come across as pretty arrogant at times – he never seems to pass up an opportunity to mention how dashingly handsome he was back in the day – but he does come across very honestly.
Overall this is a really interesting account of a film I love, and although there isn’t much that most die-hard fans won’t already know, it still makes for a good read. Best of all are the photos at the back of the book, which tell the story just by themselves.