The Goddess Who Fell to Earth

Michelle Williams rekindles Marilyn's magic

The Weinstein Co.

Ralph Fiennes stars in a scene from Coriolanus.

Nov. 23

In 1956 a privileged young Englishman named Colin Clark used family connections to land a job as Sir Laurence Olivier's third assistant director on The Prince and the Showgirl, which (mis)cast Marilyn Monroe as Olivier's love interest. Nearly 40 years later, Clark published a dishy set diary, detailing how much Olivier loathed his doped-up, often bewildered star by the end of the five-month production. Clark cast a fonder eye on Monroe, even on her off days ("MM looked a bit straggly"), praising her onscreen effect as "magical, and there's no other way to describe it."

At no point did...