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A prescreening cocktail party for the buzzed about new film “My Week With Marilyn” drew a crowd to the Hudson Hotel ahead of its New York Film Festival debut Sunday night. Harvey Weinstein, Zac Posen, Coco Rochas and Gina Gershon were among the cineastes, but all eyes at the Dior-sponsored fete were on Michelle Williams, whose portrayal of Marilyn Monroe in the film marks arguably the biggest role of her career.

“Luckily, I never approached the role thinking about other people’s expectations; only now am I thinking about that,” Williams said. “We all know her from the iconography but what I was after was her soul.”

This story first appeared in the October 11, 2011 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

Part of that was unearthing little known tidbits of Monroe’s persona.

“The breathy quality that she had in her voice was a device that she had to cover up a stutter,” Williams explained.

Both creatures of the theater, Williams’ costar Eddie Redmayne and director Simon Curtis chatted about the making of the high-profile film.

“The project didn’t land in my lap. I tugged it into my lap,” Curtis said. “It’s been a long campaign to get to this night. It’s what you call a passion project.”

Redmayne, who has played smaller parts in big-time Hollywood films, was equally as humble. When asked if he’s ready for stardom and all that it entails, the actor said: “You never really believe that any of that is going to happen.…I love what I do provided I can keep working and continue to do both theater and film, then I’m very happy.”

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