Ana de Armas’ ‘Blonde’ Director Clarifies Netflix Clash: NC-17 Rating

Andrew Dominik has finally addressed the rumors surrounding his long-anticipated Marilyn Monroe drama “Blonde.” The film stars Ana de Armas as the Hollywood icon and is based on Joyce Carol Oates’ 2000 novel, which takes a fictionalized look at Monroe’s inner life. Rumors have circulated for months about alleged clashes between Dominik and Netflix over the final cut of the movie. The filmmaker confirmed to ScreenDaily his intention to make an NC-17 movie, and he called all the reactive hoopla to the rating “a bunch of horseshit.”

“It’s a demanding movie,” Dominik said. “If the audience doesn’t like it, that’s the fucking audience’s problem. It’s not running for public office.”

The filmmaker added, ”It’s an NC-17 movie about Marilyn Monroe, it’s kind of what you want, right? I want to go and see the NC-17 version of the Marilyn Monroe story.”

Dominik, best known for directorial efforts such as “The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford” and “Killing Them Softly,” shot “Blonde” in 2019 and has locked the final cut. According to the director, Netflix “insisted” on bringing in “Hereditary” and “Tenet” editor Jennifer Lame in 2021 to “curb the excesses of the movie.” Dominik shot down speculation that “Blonde” includes a scene featuring menstrual cunnilingus, calling such a rumor “hilarious,” but he confirmed that the film depicts a rape scene as written in Joyce Carol Oates’ novel.

Another rumor about “Blonde” alleges that Ana de Armas’ performance required significant ADR in post-production because her accent was off. Dominik told ScreenDaily there was “work involved” in making the actress “sound American,” but he stressed that de Armas “is fucking amazing — the one thing nobody’s going to complain about is [de Armas’] performance.” De Armas previously told The Times she spent nine months perfecting her Monroe’s accent.

Dominik added that he has “nothing but gratitude for Netflix,” noting the streaming giant supported the title even if it had some issues with its content. The director said, “It’s much easier to support stuff when you like it. It’s much harder when you don’t.”

Netflix has not yet announced a release date for “Blonde,” but the title was included in its official 2022 film slate announcement. Dominik said he hopes “Blonde” will world premiere at Cannes.

variety has reached out to Netflix for further comment.

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