Had the footage been used, it would have been one of the first nude scenes performed in a major motion picture by an American actress

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When Marilyn Monroe filmed 1961’s The Misfits, director John Huston decided not to include footage in which the actress appeared nude — but 57 years later, the scene, which has long believed to have been lost, has been uncovered.

While working on an upcoming book about the actress — Marilyn Monroe: the Private Life of a Public Icon — author Charles Casillo arranged for an interview with the son of the film’s producer Frank Taylor, who revealed that the footage had been kept in a safe since his father’s death in 1999.

Casillo went on to tell the Daily Mail that the footage was saved because “Frank Taylor believe that it was so important and so ground-breaking.”

Had the footage been used, it would have gone down in history as one of the first nude scenes performed in a major motion picture by an American actress.

Marilyn Monroe and Clark Gable
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Casillo told the Daily Mail that the nude scene wasn’t in the script, which was written by Monroe’s then-husband Arthur Miller.

“If you read [The Misfits] script…it doesn’t say anything about nudity…When she did the scene, everyone was shocked on the set,” he explained, before noting that her co-star Clark Gable was in favor of including the footage in the movie.

However, the film’s director was not a fan of Monroe’s improvisation.

“Huston sighed and said, ‘Honey, I’ve seen them before,’ ” the author continued, adding that Huston felt the nudity “was totally unnecessary to the scene.”

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The beginning of the scene, in which Gable kisses Monroe while she holds a sheet over her breasts, was included in the movie. The part of the scene that contained nudity, which occurred once Gable left the room, was not.

Describing the scene, Casillo said that after Gable leaves, Monroe drops the sheet in order to put on a shirt, which he defended as a very natural impulse.

“Why would a woman sitting up in bed, with nobody in the room, pull the sheet up and then try to put a blouse on at the same time? It makes no sense,” he said.

Portrait Of Marilyn Monroe
Marilyn Monroe
| Credit: Alfred Eisenstaedt/The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty

The Misfits went on to not just be Monroe’s last completed film before she passed away in 1962 at the age of 36 — it was also Gable’s last film.

The Gone with the Wind star died of a heart attack in November 1960, less than a month after he finished shooting the film.

According to Casillo, Taylor’s son has not decided what to do with the footage of Monroe’s nude scene yet.