Marilyn Monroe met the newly crowned Queen Elizabeth II at a Royal Command Performance of The Battle of the River Plate in London on October 29, 1956. Marilyn was in England to film The Prince and The Showgirl. She was invited by the Queen to attend the event, and was the last one to arrive at the Empire Theatre at Leicester Square. She finally appeared just before the doors were closed.
They were both 30 years old at the time and shook hands and had a little chat. The Queen asked Marilyn how it was like living in Windsor, to which Marilyn replied “What?…I understand we lived at Englefield Green.” The Queen then explained to her that Windsor and Englefield Green was next door neighbours. Twenty film stars was at the event to meet the Queen, including Joan Crawford, Brigitte Bardot, Victor Mature and Anita Ekberg, but she only stopped at Marilyn’s place in the line.
Marilyn was very nervous before her royal meeting. She asked her old friend Anne Karger how she should behave. Anne counseled: “Look her straight in the eye and say to yourself, ‘I’m just as pretty as you are.’ “
Marilyn wore a gold lamé gown, with topaz straps and a gold cape, and got the headlines in the British papers the next day. The Daily Mirror wrote: “Marilyn Monroe, the sleek, the pink and the beautiful, captured Britain.” The Daily Mail was impressed by her “diplomacy, mischief and bubbling sense of fun”, The Observer remarked that she had earned a “place in the social history of our time”, whilst The Spectator wrote that she was “as intelligent as she was pleasant as she was pretty”.