How To Marry a Millionaire

Scene from the film How To Marry a Millionaire
original poster for the film HOW TO MARRY A MILLIONAIRE

How to Marry a Millionaire was the first film 20th Century Fox shot in its newly patented Cinemascope widescreen format, but the second released, after their Biblical epic The Robe (1953, dir. Henry Koster). It seemed an odd choice for the widescreen, a comedy about three gold-diggers out to snare rich husbands, but then again, it had three beauties as its hook: 40s bombshells Betty Grable and Lauren Bacall and the new kid on the block, Marilyn Monroe, who had just leaped to superstardom with Fox’s Gentlemen Prefer Blondes (1953, dir. Howard Hawks).

Superb art direction with a lush palette split between pastel and jewel tones, glam costumes (the women are fashion models), an opulent Manhattan penthouse, and NYC sights enliven the still crisp comedic charm of its leads: especially the brash and wisecracking Bacall and Monroe, a near-sighted naïve.

Part of our Cinemascope series.