NEW YORK (Reuters) - A 15-minute film of Marilyn Monroe engaging in oral sex with an unidentified man will be kept from public view by a New York businessman who has bought it for $1.5 million, the broker of the deal said on Monday.
Memorabilia collector Keya Morgan said he recently arranged the sale of the silent, black-and-white film from the son of a dead FBI informant who possessed it to a wealthy Manhattan businessman who wants to protect Monroe’s privacy.
“The gentleman who bought it said out respect for Marilyn he’s not going to make a joke of it and put it on the Internet and try to exploit her,” said memorabilia collector Keya Morgan. “That’s not his intention and I would never get my name involved if that were to happen.”
Monroe is clothed and the man’s head remains out of the frame for the entire 15 minutes of the film, said Morgan, who watched it.
Monroe was rumored to have had an affair with U.S. President John F. Kennedy, and Morgan said then FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, a Kennedy rival, went to great lengths to try to prove it was Kennedy in the film.
One of Monroe’s ex-husbands, the late baseball great Joe DiMaggio, once tried to buy it from the collector for $25,000 but “he would not part with it,” according to FBI files on Monroe that are available on the FBI Web site.
Morgan is a well-known collector who owns memorabilia from the estates of Monroe and DiMaggio and said he was friends with Monroe’s other two husbands, Jim Dougherty and Arthur Miller.
He said he learned of the existence of the film while working on a documentary about Monroe, who died in August 1962 at age 36. A former FBI agent told him about it, and Morgan said he confirmed it by tracking down the son of the FBI informant, who had provided a copy to the FBI.
“I thought the FBI agent was embellishing it for my documentary. I never believed it once until I pulled up the FBI document (referring to the film),” Morgan said.
The late informant’s son had the original while the copy remains classified in the FBI files, said Morgan, whose deal was first reported by the New York Post on Monday.
“The FBI agent that I interviewed said J. Edgar Hoover was completely obsessed. A team of nine individuals were analyzing the tape inside a lab. J. Edgar Hoover brought in a few prostitutes who allegedly had been with President Kennedy and they tried to ... see if that was really President Kennedy.”
An FBI spokesmen declined to comment except to point out the Monroe files available online, which refer to the film but make no mention of Hoover’s purported interest.
Editing by Sandra Maler