One of the earliest and most enduring sex symbols of Hollywood, Marilyn Monroe was a talented actress who began a career as a model before foraying into films. The product of a broken home, she did not even know the identity of her biological father. Named as Norma Jeane Mortenson at birth, she spent most of her childhood in foster homes as her mother was mentally unstable and incapable of raising her daughter on her own. The little girl endured a harsh childhood marked by abuse and apathy due to which she suffered from several mental problems later in her life. As a young woman she stared modeling for The Blue Book Modeling Agency and soon became a very successful model thanks to her striking beauty and grace. Eventually she moved on to films, initially appearing in minor roles before bagging more substantial ones. She soon developed an image of a sex symbol by appearing without clothes for the ‘Playboy’ magazine. As an actress she acted in several successful films like ‘The Asphalt Jungle’, ‘The Seven Year Itch’, and ‘The Prince and the Showgirl’. However the final years of her brief life were marked by mental illnesses and alcoholism. Her life was snuffed out untimely when she was just 36 by an overdose of sleeping pills.