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The New Face Of Chanel No. 5

Gabi Duncan |
October 17, 2013 | 12:21 p.m. PDT

Staff Reporter

Marilyn Monroe in the new Chanel No. 5 campaign (Twitter).
Marilyn Monroe in the new Chanel No. 5 campaign (Twitter).
Chanel has announced who will be the new face for their timeless perfume, Chanel No. 5… and it is probably not who you would guess.

Marilyn Monroe. 

It has been 51 years since Monroe’s death, but Chanel is paying tribute to the illustrious actress by resurrecting her in the campaign. The television and print advertisements will feature black and white images of Monroe, posing with a bottle of Chanel No. 5. 

At first, it may seem like an unexpected choice for the fashion and beauty house to use the deceased icon in their latest campaign. But, when you think about Monroe’s legacy this is an ingenious move on Chanel’s part. The renowned fragrance has been revered since Gabrielle Chanel released it in 1921. So, who better to portray the eternal appeal of Chanel No. 5 than the eternal Hollywood legend? 

Furthermore, Monroe had an enduring love for the perfume during her lifetime. In a 1952 interview with Life Magazine, Monroe confessed, “You know they ask you questions. Just an example: What do you wear to bed? Do you wear pajama top? The bottom of the pajama? A nightgown? So, I said Chanel No. 5! Because it’s the truth! And yet I don’t want to say nude, but it’s the truth.” Monroe’s magnetism and charm make her the perfect candidate for such a role. 

It seems that Chanel is captivated by the alluring actress. This is not the first time that they have revived the actress and used her mass appeal to sell fragrance. In 1994, she appeared in a Chanel No. 5 advertisement with then-spokesperson Carole Bouquet. In the commercial, Bouquet morphs into Monroe, as we hear Monroe singing “I Want to Be Loved By You.”

Dior has also used Monroe’s likeness to garner attention. In the 2011 campaign for J’Adore perfume, Charlize Theron starred alongside Monroe, Grace Kelly and Marlene Dietrich – three powerhouse Hollywood idols. The late actresses lend their weight to the commercial through the magic of CGI. Dior acquired a lot of recognition for the glamorous campaign and their surprising approach.

Monroe will enchant us once more when the Chanel No. 5 campaign launches in December. She is in famous company with previous Chanel No. 5 faces, including Keira Knightley, Nicole Kidman and Brad Pitt. 

Reach Staff Reporter Gabi Duncan here. Follow her on Twitter.



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