The Boy Who Was Marilyn - Jimmy James Documentary

For the first time ever, Jimmy James has partnered with a producer to develop a documentary about his illustrious career as a Marilyn Monroe impersonator. From growing up on a dirt road in conservative Laredo, TX to fame and notoriety performing as a woman, he is the pioneer of drag and female impersonation.

He garnered numerous national television appearances on the most popular talk shows of the 80s and 90s, including Phil Donahue, Geraldo Rivera, Sally Jesse Raphael and Joan Rivers.  While the public ride of Jimmy as Marilyn was glamorous, behind the scenes, he faced an unkind, homophobic world of obstacles and heartache.

His incredible decades-long journey (on and off camera) was documented on thousands of old tapes. We are starting a fundraiser to pay for the transfer and digitization of rare, never-before-seen footage & photographs of him as Marilyn Monroe. The amount we are looking to raise also includes paying an editor to cut that footage into a sizzle (pitch video). This video will be used to shop the documentary to networks, streaming platforms and production companies.

Jimmy James is ready to tell his story - the good, the bad and the beautiful. We’d love to have you be a part of this project with your kind donation.


Jimmy James is an award-winning entertainer known for his lively musical cabaret shows featuring his legendary vocal impressions of Cher, Judy Garland, Barbra Streisand, Billie Holiday, Patsy Cline, Diana Ross and more. He also carries the legacy as a Marilyn Monroe impersonator. Although he retired his Marilyn act in 1997, his visual illusion of her is still considered the best in the world. 

To learn more about Jimmy and see his performances, please visit his YouTube channel here:

  • Michael Phillips 
    • $100 
    • 2 d
  • Susan E Holmes 
    • $1,000 
    • 2 d
  • Anonymous 
    • $100 
    • 3 d
  • Lee Carryn 
    • $50 
    • 6 d
  • John Streeter 
    • $20 
    • 12 d
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Debbie Levin 
San Antonio, TX