Media/Movie Scripts/Other/Sunset Blvd. (1949)

SUNSET BOULEVARD


  Charles Brackett
  Billy Wilder
  D.M. Marshman, Jr.

  March 21,1949



                         SEQUENCE "A"  


  A-l-4   START the picture with the actual street sign:
          SUNSET BOULEVARD, stencilled on a curbstope.
          In the gutter lie dead leaves, scraps of paper,
          burnt matches and cigarette butts.  It is early
          morning.

          Now the CAMERA leaves the sign and MOVES EAST, the
          grey asphalt of the street filling the screen.  As
          speed accelerates to around 40 m.p.h., traffic de-
          marcations, white arrows, speed-limit warnings, man-
          hole covers, etc., flash by.  SUPERIMPOSED on all
          this are the CREDIT TITLES, in the stencilled style
          of the street sign.

          Over the scene we now hear         MAN'S VOICE
          sirens.  Police squad cars    Yes, this is Sunset
          hurtle toward the camera,     Boulevard, Los Angeles,
          turn off the road into a      California.  It's about
          driveway with squealing       five o'clock in the
          brakes.  Dismounted motor-    morning.  That's the
          cycle cops stand directing    Homicide Squad, com-
          the cars in.                  plete with detectives
                                        and newspaper men.
  A-5     PATIO AND POOL OF             A murder has been re-
          MANSION                       ported from one of those
                                        great big houses in the
          The policemen and news-       ten thousand block.
          paper reporters and           You'll read all about
          photographers have            it in the late editions,
          jumped out of the cars        I'm sure.  You'll get
          and are running up to         it over your radio,
          the pool, in which a          and see it on tele-
          body is seen floating.        vision -- because an
          Photographers' bulbs          old-time star is in-
          flash in rapid suc-           volved.  one of the big-
          cession.                      gest.  But before you
                                        hear it all distorted
                                        and blown out of
                                        proportion, before those
                                        Hollywood columnists
                                        get their hands on it,
                                        maybe you'd like to
                                        hear the facts, the
                                        whole truth...

  A-6     FLASH OF THE BODY
                                          MAN'S VOICE
          Angle up through the       If so, you've come to the
          water from the bottom      right party...  You see,
          of the pool, as the        the body of a young man
          body floats face down-     was found floating in the
          ward.  It is a well-       pool of her mansion, with
          dressed young man.         two shots in his back and
                                     one in his stomach.  No-
                                     body important, really.
                                     Just a movie writer with
                                     a couple of "B" pictures
                                     to his credit.  The poor
                                     dope.  He always wanted a
                                     pool Well, in the end
                                     he got himself a pool --
          SLOW DISSOLVE TO:          only the price turned out
                                     to be a little high...
                                     Let's go back about six
  A-7     HOLLYWOOD, SEEN FROM       months and find the day
          THE HILLTOP AT IVAR        when it all started.
          & FRANKLIN STREETS

          It is a crisp sunny        I was living in an
          day.  The voice con-       apartment house above
          tinues speaking as         Franklin and Ivar.
          CAMERA PANS toward         Things were tough
          the ALTO NIDO APART-       at the moment.  I hadn't
          MENT HOUSE, an ugly        worked in a studio for
          Moorish structure ofsat    a long time.  So I
          stucco, about four         there grinding
          stories high.  CAMERA      out original stories,
          MOVES TOWARD AN OPEN       two a week.  Only I
          WINDOW on the third        seemed to have lost
          floor, where we look       my touch.  Maybe they
          in on JOE GILLIS' APART-   weren't original
          MENT.  Joe Gillis, bare-   enough.  Maybe they
          footed and wearing no-     were too original.
          thing but an old bath-     All I know is they
          robe.  is sitting on       didn't sell.
          the bed.  In front of
          him.  on a straight
          chair, is a portable
          typewriter.  Beside
          him, on the bed, is a
          dirty ashtray and a
          scattering of type
          written and pencil-
          marked pages.  Gillis
          is typing.  with a
          pencil clenched bet-
          ween his teeth.



  A-8     JOE GILLIS' APARTMENT

          It is a one-room affair with an unmade Murphy bed
          pulled out of the wall at which Gillis sits typing.
          There are a couple of worn-out plush chairs and a
          Spanish-style, wrought-iron standing lamp.  Also a
          small desk littered with books and letters, and a
          chest of drawers with a portable phonograph and some
          records on top.  On the walls are a couple of repro-
          ductions of characterless paintings, with laundry
          bills and snapshots stuck in the frames.  Through an
          archway can he seen a tiny kitchenette, complete with
          unwashed coffee pot and cup, empty tin cans, orange
          peels, etc.  The effect is dingy and cheerless --
          just another furnished apartment.  The buzzer SOUNDS.

                            GILLIS
                 Yeah.

          The buzzer SOUNDS again.  Gillis gets up and opens
          the door.  Two men wearing hats stand outside one of
          them carrying a briefcase.

                            NO. 1
                 Joseph C. Gillis?

                            GILLIS
                 That's right.

          The men ease into the room.  No. 1 hands Gillis a
          business card.

                            NO. 1
                 We've come for the car.

                            GILLIS
                 What car?

                            NO. 2
                      (Consulting a paper)
                 1946 Plymouth convertible.  Calif-
                 ornia license 97 N 567.

                            NO. 1
                 Where are the keys?

                            GILLIS
                 Why should I give you the keys?


                            NO. 1
                 Because the company's played ball
                 with you long enough.  Because
                 you're three payments behind.  And
                 because we've got a Court order.
                 Come on -- the keys.

                            NO. 2
                 Or do you want us to jack it up
                 and haul it away?

                            GILLIS
                 Relax, fans.  The car isn't here.

                            NO. 1
                 Is that So?

                            GILLIS
                 I lent it to a friend of mine.
                 He took it up to Palm Springs.

                            NO. 1
                 Had to get away for his health,
                 I suppose.

                            GILLIS
                 You don't believe me?  Look in
                 the garage.

                            NO. 1
                 Sure we believe you, only now we
                 want you to believe us.  That car
                 better be back here by noon tomorrow,
                 or there's going to be fireworks.

                            GILLIS
                 You say the cutest things.

          The men leave.  Gillis                 GILLIS' VOICE
          stands pondering beside    Well, I needed about two
          the door for a moment.     hundred and ninety dollars
          Then he walks to the       and I needed it real
          center of the room and,    quick, or I'd lose my car.
          with his back to the       It wasn't in Palm Springs
          CAMERA, slips into a       and it wasn't in the
          pair of gray slacks.       garage.  I was way ahead
          There is a metallic        of the finance company.
          noise as some loose
          change and keys drop
          from the trouser pockets.
          As Gillis bends over to
          pick them up, we see that
          he has dropped the car
          keys, identifiable be-
          cause of a rabbit's
          foot and a miniature
          license plate attached
          to the key-ring.  Gillis
          pockets the keys and as
          he starts to put on a
          shirt

          DISSOLVE TO:

  A-9     EXTERIOR OF RUDY'S                   GILLIS' VOICE
          SHOESHINE PARLOR (DAY)                
                                        I knew they'd be coming
          A small shack-like build-     around and I wasn't tak-
          ing, it stands in the         ing any chances, so I
          corner of a public park-      kept it a couple of
          ing lot.  Rudy, a             blocks away in a parking
          colored boy, is giving        lot behind Rudy's Shoe-
          a customer a shine.           shine Parlor.  Rudy
                                        never asked any quest-
                                        ions.  He'd just look at
                                        your heels and know the
                                        score.

          PAN BEHIND the shack to GILLIS' CAR, a yellow 1946
          Plymouth convertible with the top down.  Gillis enters
          the SHOT.  He is wearing a tweed sport jacket, a tan
          polo shirt, and moooasins.  He steps into the car and
          drives it off.  Rudy winks after him.


  A-10    THE ALLEY NEXT TO SIDNEY'S
          MEN'S SHOP ON BRONSON AVE.            GILLIS' VOICE
                                        I had an original story
          Gillis drives into the        kicking around Paranount.
          alley and parks his car       My agent told me it was
          right behind a delivery       dead as a doornail.  but
          truck.  PAN AND FOLLOW        I knew a big shot over
          HIM as he gets out, walks     there who'd always liked
          around the corner into        me, and the time had
          Bronson and then toward       come to take a little
          the towering main gate of     advantage of it.  His
          Paramount.  A few loafers,    name was Sheldrake.  He
          studio cops and extras are    was a smart producer,
          lounging there.               with a set of ulcers to
                                        prove it.

          DISSOLVE TO:

  A-11    SHELDRAKE'S OFFICE

          It is in the style of a Paramount executive's office --
          mahogany, leather, and a little chintz.  On the
          walls are some large framed photographs of Paramount
          stars, with dedications to Mr. Sheldrake.  Also a
          couple of framed critics' awards certificates, and an
          Oscar on a bookshelf.  A shooting schedule chart is
          thumb-tacked into a large bulletin board.  There are
          piles or scripts, a few pipes and, somewhere in the
          background, some set models.

          Start on Sheldrake.  He is about 45.  Behind his wor-
          ried face there hides a coated tongue.  He is en-
          gaged in changing the stained rilter cigarette in
          his Zeus holder.

                            SHELDRAKE
                 All right, Gillis.  You've got
                 five minutes.  What's your story
                 about?

                            GILLIS
                 It's about a ball player, a rookie
                 shortstop that's batting 347.  The
                 poor kid was once mixed up in a hold-
                 up.  But he's trying to go straight --
                 except there's a bunch of gamblers
                 who won't let him.

                            SHELDRAKE
                 So they tell the kid to throw the
                 World Series, or else, huh?

                            GILLIS
                 More or less.  Only for the end
                 I've got a gimmick that's real good.

          A secretary enters, carrying a glass or milk.
          She opens a drawer and takes out a bottle of pills for
          Sheldrake.

                            SHELDRAKE
                 Got a title?

                            GILLIS
                 Bases Loaded.  There's a 4O-page
                 outline.

                            SHELDRAKE
                      (To the secretary)
                 Get the Readers' Department and
                 see what they have on Bases Loaded.

          The secretary exits.  Sheldrake takes a pill and
          washes it down with some milk.

                            GILLIS
                 They're pretty hot about it
                 over at Twentieth, but I
                 think Zanuck's all wet.  Can
                 you see Ty Power as a

                            GILLIS (cont'd)
                 shortstop?  You've got the best
                 man for it right here on this lot.
                 Alan Ladd.  Good change of pace for
                 Alan Ladd.  There's another thing:
                 it's pretty simple to shoot.  Lot
                 of outdoor stuff.  Bet you could
                 make the whole thing for under a
                 million.  And there's a great little
                 part for Bill Demarest.  One of the
                 trainers, an oldtime player who
                 got beaned and goes out of his head
                 sometimes.

          The door opens and Betty Schaefer enters -- a clean-
          cut, nice looking girl of 21, with a bright, alert
          manner.  Dressed in tweed skirt, Brooks sweater and
          pearls, and carrying a folder of papers.  She puts
          them on Sheldrake's desk, not noticing Gillis, who
          stands near the door.

                            BETTY
                 Hello, Mr. Sheldrake.  On that Bases
                 Loaded.  I covered it with a 2-page
                 synopsis.
                      (She holds it out)
                 But I wouldn't bother.

                            SHELDRAKE
                 What's wrong with it?

                            BETTY
                 It's from hunger.

                            SHELDRAKE
                 Nothing for Ladd?

                            BETTY
                 Just a rehash of something that
                 wasn't very good to begin with.

                            SHELDRAKE
                 I'm sure you'll be glad to meet
                 Mr. Gillis.  He wrote it.

          Betty turns towards Gillis, embarrassed.

                            SHELDRAKE
                 This is Miss Kramer.

                            BETTY
                 Schaefer.  Betty Schaefer.  And
                 right now I wish I could crawl
                 into a hole and pull it in after
                 me.

                            GILLIS
                 If I could be of any help...

                            BETTY
                 I'm sorry, Mr. Gillis, but I
                 just don't think it's any good.
                 I found it flat and banal.

                            GILLIS
                 Exactly what kind of material do
                 you recommend?  James Joyce?
                 Dostoosvsky?

                            SHELDRAKE
                 Name dropper.

                            BETTY
                 I just think pictures should say
                 a little something.

                            GILLIS
                 Oh, you're one of the message
                 kids.  Just a story won't do.
                 You'd have turned down Gone With the
                 Wind.

                            SHELDRAKE
                 No, that was me.  I said, Who
                 wants to see a Civil War picture?

                            BETTY
                 Perhaps the reason I hated Bases
                 Loaded is that I knew your name.
                 I'd always heard you had some
                 talent.

                            GILLIS
                 That was last year.  This year
                 I'm trying to earn a living.

                            BETTY
                 So you take Plot 27-A, make it
                 glossy, make it slick --

                            SHELDRAKE
                 Carefull Those are dirty words!
                 You sound like a bunch of New
                 York critics.  Thank you, Miss
                 Schaefer.

                            BETTY
                 Goodbye, Mr. Gillis.

                            GILLIS
                 Goodbye.  Next time I'll write
                 The Naked and the Dead.


          Betty leaves.

                            SHELDRAKE
                 Well, seems like Zanuck's got
                 himself a baseball picture.

                            GILLIS
                 Mr. Sheldrake, I don't want you
                 to think I thought this was going
                 to win any Academy Award.

                            SHELDRAKE
                      (His mind free-wheeling)
                 Of course, we're always looking
                 for a Betty Hutton.  Do you see
                 it as a Betty Hutton?

                            GILLIS
                 Frankly, no.

                            SHELDRAKE
                      (Amusing himself)
                 Now wait a minute.  If we made
                 it a girls' softball team, put
                 in a few numbers.  Might make a
                 cute musical: It Happened in
                 the Bull Pen -- the story of a
                 Woman.

                            GILLIS
                 You trying to be funny?  -- because
                 I'm all out of laughs.  I'm over a
                 barrel and I need a job.

                            SHELDRAKE
                 Sure, Gillis.  If something should
                 come along -

                            GILLIS
                 Along is no good.  I need it now.

                            SHELDRAKE
                 Haven't got a thing.

                            GILLIS
                 Any kind of assignment.  Additional
                 Dialogue.

                            SHELDRAKE
                 There's nothing, Gillis.  Not
                 even if you were a relative.

                             GILLIS
                       (Hating it)
                 Look, Mr. Sheldrake, could you
                 let me have three hundred bucks
                 yourself, as a personal loan?

                             SHELDRAKE
                 Could I?  Gillis, last year some-
                 body talked me into buying a ranch
                 in the valley.  So I borrowed money
                 from the bank so I could pay for
                 the ranch.  This year I had to
                 mortgage the ranch so I could keep
                 up my life insurance so I could
                 borrow on the insurance so I could
                 pay my income tax.  Now if Dewey
                 had been elected -

                             GILLIS
                 Goodbye, Mr. Sheldrake.

          DISSOLVE TO:


  A-12    EXT. SCHWAB'S DRUG STORE
          (EARLY AFTERNOON ACTIVITY)         GILLIS' VOICE
                                      After that I drove down
          MOVE IN toward drug store   to headquarters.  That's
          and                         the way a lot of us think
                                      about Schwab's Drug Store.
          DISSOLVE TO:                Actors and stock girls and
                                      waiters.  Kind of a
                                      combination office,Kaffee-
  A-13    INT. SCHWAB'S DRUG STORE    Klatsch and waiting room.
                                      Waiting, waiting for the
          The usual Schwabadero       gravy train.
          crowd sits at the fount-
          ain, gossips at the
          cigar-stand, loiters by
          the magazine display.
          MOVE IN towards the TWO
          TELEPHONE BOOTHS.  In       I got myself ten nickels
          one of them sits Gillis,    and started sending out
          a stack of nickels in       a general S.O.S.  Couldn't
          front of him.  He's         get hold of my agent,
          doing a lot of talking      naturally.  So then I
          into the telephone,         called a pal of mine,name
          hanging up, dropping        of Artie Green -- an awful
          another nickel, dialing,    nice guy, an assistant
          talking again.              director.  He cquld let me
                                      have twenty, but twenty
                                      wouldn't do.

                                           GILLIS' VOICE (Cont.)
                                Then I talked to a couple of
                                yes men at Twentieth.  To me
                                they said no.  Finally I
                                located that agent of mine, the
                                big faker.  Was he out digging
                                up a job for poor Joe Gillis?
                                Hmph! He was hard at work in
                                Bel Air, making with the golf
                                clubs.

          Gillis hangs up with a curse, opens the door of the
          booth, emerges, wiping the sweat from his forehead.
          He walks toward the exit.  He is stopped by the
          voice of

                            SKOLSKY
                 Hello, Gillis.

          Gillis looks around.  At the fountain sits Skolsky,
          drinking a cup of coffee.

                            GILLIS
                 Hello, Mr. Skolsky.

                            SKOLSKY
                 Got anything for the column?

                            GILLIS
                 Sure.  Just sold an original for
                 a hundred grand.  The Life of the
                 Warner Brothers.  Starring the Ritz
                 Brothers.  Playing opposite the
                 Andrew Sisters.

                            SKOLSKY
                      (With a sour smile)
                 But don't get me wrong -- I love
                 Hollywood.

          Gillis walks out.

          DISSOLVE TO:


  A-14    THE BEL AIR GOLF LINKS

          On a sun-dappled green edged with tall sycamores,
          stands Morino, the agent, a caddy and a nondescript
          opponent in the background.  Gillis has evidently
          stated his problem already.


                            MORINO
                 So you need three hundred dollars?
                 Of course, I could give you three
                 hundred dollars.  Only I'm not
                 going to.

                            GILLIS
                 No?

                            MORINO
                 Gillis, get this through your
                 head.  I'm not just your agent.
                 It's not the ten per cent.  I'm
                 your friend.

          He sinks his putt and walks toward the next tee,
          Gillis following him.

                            GILLIS
                 How's that about your being my
                 friend?

                            MORINO
                 Don't you know the finest things
                 in the world have been written on
                 an empty stomach?  Once a talent
                 like yours gets into that Mocambo-
                 Romanoff rut, you're through.

                            GILLIS
                 Forget Romanoff's.  It's the car
                 I'm talking about.  If I lose my
                 car it's like having my legs out off.

                            MORINO
                 Greatest thing that could happen
                 to you.  Now you'll have to sit
                 behind that typewriter.  Now
                 you'll have to write.

                            GILLIS
                 What do you think I've been doing?
                 I need three hundred dollars.

                            MORINO
                      (Icily)
                 Maybe what you need is another agent.

          He bends down to tee up his ball.  Gillis turns away.

          DISSOLVE TO:


  A-15    GILLIS IN HIS OPEN CAR
                                               GILLIS' VOICE
          driving down Sunset      As I drove back towards town
          towards Hollywood.  He   I took inventory of my pros-
          drives slowly.  His      pects.  They now added up to
          mind is working.          exactly zero.  Apparently I
                                   just didn't have what it takes,
                                   and the time had come to wrap
                                   up the whole Hollywood deal
                                   and go home.  Maybe if I hocked
                                   all my junk there'd be enough
                                   for a bus ticket back to Ohio,
                                   back to that thirty-five-
                                   dollar-a-week job behind the
                                   copy desk of the Dayton Evening
                                   Post, if it was still open.
                                   Back to the smirking delight
                                   of the whole office.  All
          Gillis stops his car at  right you wise guys.  why don't
          a red light by the main  you go out and take a crack at
          entrance to Bel Air.     Hollywood?  Maybe you think
          Suddenly his eyes fall   you could -- Oh-oh!
          on:


  A-16    ANOTHER CAR

          It is a dark-green Dodge business coupe, also waiting
          for the light to change.  but headed in the opposite
          direction.  In it are the two finance company men.
          They spot Gillis in his car and exchange looks.  From
          across the intersection Gillis recognizes them and
          pulls down the leather sunshade to screen his face.
          As the light changes.  Gillis gives his car the gun
          and shoots away.  The men narrowly avoid hitting
          another car as they make a U-turn into oncoming
          traffic and start after him.

  A-17    THE CHASE
   to
  A-21    Very short, very sharp, told in FLASHES.  (Use
          locations on Sunset between Bel Air and Holmby Hills).
          The men lose Gillis around a bend, catch sight of him
          and then -- while they are trapped behind a slow-
          moving truck.  he disappears again.


  A-22    GILLIS

          He is driving as fast as he dares, keeping an eye out
          for pursuit in his rear-view mirror.  Suddenly his
          right front tire blows out.  Gillis clutches desperately
          at the steering wheel and manages to turn the careening
          car into

  A-23    A DRIVEWAY

          It is overgrown with weeds and screened from the street
          by bushes and trees.  Gillis stops his car about thirty
          feet from the street and looks back.

                                               GILLIS' VOICE
                                     Was I far enough ahead?

  A-24    THE OTHER CAR

          shoots past the driveway, still looking for Gillis.

  A-25    GILLIS
          He watches his pursuers               GILLIS' VOICE
          shoot past and out of      Yeah...
          sight.  He opens the
          door and looks down at     I had landed myself in the
          the flat tire.  Then he    driveway of some big mansion
          looks around to see        that looked run-down and
          where he is.               deserted.  At the end of the
                                     drive was a lovely sight
  A-26    DRIVEWAY WITH GARAGE       indeed -- a great big empty
                                     garage, just standing there
          An enormous, five-car      going to waste.  If ever there
          affair.  neglected and     was a place to stash away a
          empty-looking.             limping car with a hot license
                                     number...
  A-27    GILLIS

          He gets back into his      There was another occupant in
          car and carefully pilots   that garage: an enormous
          the limping vehicle into   foreign-built automobile.  It
          one of the stalls.  In     must have burned up ten gallons
          the adjoining one is a     to a mile.  It had a 1932
          large, dust-covered        license.  I figured that's
          Isotta-Fraschini propped   when the owners moved out...
          up on blocks.  He closes   I also figured I couldn't go
          the garage door and walks  back to my apartment now that
          up the driveway.  In idle  those bloodhounds were on to
          curiosity he mounts a      me.  The idea was to get Artie
          stone staircase which      Green's and stay there till I
          leads to the garden.       could make that bus for Ohio.
          CAMERA IN BACK OF HIM.     Once back in Dayton I'd drop
          At the top of the steps    the credit boys a picturepost-
          he sees the somber pile    card telling them where to
          of                         pick up the jallopy.


          NORMA DESMOND'S HOUSE             GILLIS' VOICE
          It is a grandiose --   It was a great big white
          Italianate structure,  elephant of a place.  The kind
          mottled by the years,  crazy movie people built in the
          gloomy, forsaken,      crazy Twenties.  A neglected
          little formal garden   house gets an unhappy look.
          completely gone to     This one had it in spades.  It
          seed.                  was like that old woman in
                                 Great Expectations -- that Miss
          From somewhere above   Haversham in her rotting wed-
          comes                  ding dress and her torn veil,
                                 taking it out on the world be-
                                 cause she'd been given the go-
                                 by.

                            A WOMAN'S VOICE
                 You there!

          Gillls turns and looks.

  A-28    UPSTAIRS LOGGIA

          Behind a bamboo blind there is a movement of
          a dark figure.

                            WOMAN'S VOICE
                 Wlly are you so late?  Why have
                 you kept me waitlng so long?

  A-29    GILLIS

          He stands flabbergasted.  A new noise attracts his
          attention -- the creak of a heavy metal-and-glass
          door being opened.  He turns and sees

  A-3O    THE ENTRANCE DOOR OF THE HOUSE

          Max von Mayerling stands there.  He is sixty, and
          all in black, except for immaculate white cotton
          gloves, shirt, high, stiff collar and a white bow
          tie.  His coat is shiny black alpaca, his trousers
          ledger-atriped.  He is semi-paralyzed.  The left
          side of his mouth is pulled down, and he leans on a
          rubber-ferruled stick.

                            MAX
                 In here!

          Gillis enters the shot.


                            GILLIS
                 I just put my car in the garage.
                 I had a blow-out.  I thought --

                            MAX
                 Go on in.

          There is authority in the gesture of his white-
          gloved hand as he motions Gillis inside.

                            GILLIS
                 Look, maybe I'd better take my
                 car --

                            MAX
                 Wipe your feet!

          Automatically, Gillis wipes his feet on an enormous
          shabby cocoanut mat.

                            MAX
                 You are not dressed properly.

                            GILLIS
                 Dressed for what?

                            THE WOMAN'S VOICE
                 Max!  Have him come up, Max!

                            MAX
                      (Gesturing)
                 Up the stairs!

                            GILLIS
                 Suppose you listen just for a
                 minute -

                            MAX
                 Madame is waiting.

                            GILLIS
                 For me?  Okay.

          Gillis enters.


  A-31    INT. NORMA DESMOND'S ENTRANCE HALL

          It is grandiose and grim.  The whole place is one of
          those abortions of silent-picture days, with bowling
          alleys in the cellar and a built-in pipe organ, and
          beams imported from Italy, with California termites
          at work on them.  Portieres are drawn before all the
          windows, and only thin slits or sunlight find their
          way in to fight the few electric bulbs which are always
          burning.



          Gillis starts up the curve of the black marble
          staircase.  It has a wrought-iron rail and a worn
          velvet rope along the wall.

                            MAX
                      (From below)
                 If you need help with the
                 coffin call me.

          The oddity of the situation has caught Gillis'
          imagination.  He climbs the stairs with a kind of
          morbid fascination.  At the top he stops, undecided,
          then turns to the right and is stopped by

                            WOMAN'S VOICE
                 This way!

          Gillis swings around.

          Norma Desmond stands down the corridor next to a
          doorway from which emerges a flickering light.  She
          is a little woman.  There is a curious style, a
          great sense of high voltage about her.  She is dress-
          ed in black house pyjamas and black high-heeled
          pumps.  Around her throat there is a leopard-pat-
          terned scarf, and wound around her head a turban of
          the same material.  Her skin is very pale, and she
          is wearing dark glasses.

                            NORMA
                 In here.  I put him on my massage
                 table in front of the fire.  He
                 always liked fires and poking at
                 them with a stick.

          Gillis enters the SHOT and she leads him into


  A-32    NORMA DESMOND'S BEDROOM

          It is a huge, gloomy room hung in white brocade which
          has beconle dirty over the years and even slightly
          torn in a few places.  There's a great, unmade gilded
          bed in the shape of a swan, from which the gold had
          begun to peel.  There is a disorder of clothes and
          negligees and faded photographs of old-time stars
          about.

          In an imitation baroque fireplace some logs are burn-
          ing.  On the massage table before it lies a small
          form shrouded under a Spanish shawl.  At each end on
          a baroque pedestal stands a three-branched cande-
          labrum, the candles lighted.

                            NORMA
                 I've made up my mind we'll bury him in
                 the garden.  Any city laws against that?


                            GILLIS
                 I wouldn't know.

                            NORMA
                 I don't care anyway.  I want the
                 coffin to be white.  And I want
                 it specially lined with satin.
                 White, or deep pink.

          She picks up the shawl to make up her mind about the
          color.  From under the shawl flops down a dead arm.
          Gillis stares and recoils a little.  It is like a
          child's arm, only black and hairy.

                            NORMA
                 Maybe red.  bright flaming red.
                 Gay.  Let's make it gay.

          Gillis edges closer and glances down.  Under the
          shawl he sees the sad, bearded face of a dead
          chimpanzee.  Norma drops back the shawl.

                            NORMA
                 How much will it be?  I warn you -
                 don't give me a fancy price just
                 because I'm rich.

                            GILLIS
                 Lady.  you've got the wrong man.

          For the first time.  Norma really looks at him
          through her dark glasses.

                            GILLIS
                 I had some trouble with my car.
                 Flat tire.  I pulled into your
                 garage till I could get a spare.
                 I thought this was an empty house.

                            NORMA
                 It is not.  Get out.

                            GILLIS
                 I'm sorry, and I'm sorry you lost
                 your friend, and I don't think red
                 is the right color.

                            NORMA
                 Get out.

                            GILLIS
                 Sure.  Wait a minute -- haven't
                 I seen you -- ?


                            NORMA
                 Or shall I call my servant?

                            GILLIS
                 I know your face.  You're Norma
                 Desmond.  You used to be in
                 pictures.  You used to be big.

                            NORMA
                 I am big.  It's the pictures
                 that got small.

                            GILLIS
                 I knew there was something
                 wrong with them.

                            NORMA
                 They're dead.  They're finished.
                 There was a time when this busi-
                 ness had the eyes of the whole
                 wide world.  But that wasn't good
                 enough.  Oh, nol They wanted the
                 ears of the world, too.  So they
                 opened their big mouths, and out
                 came talk, talk, talk...

                            GILLIS
                 That's where the popcorn business
                 comes in.  You buy yourself a bag
                 and plug up your ears.

                            NORMA
                 Look at them in the front offices --
                 the master minds! They took the
                 idols and smashed them.  The
                 Fairbankses and the Chaplins and
                 the Gilberts and the Valentinos.
                 And who have they got now?  Some
                 nobodies -- a lot of pale little
                 frogs croaking pish-poshl

                            GILLIS
                 Don't get sore at me.  I'm not
                 an executive.  I'm just a writer.

                            NORMA
                 You are! Writing words, words!
                 You've made a rope of words and
                 strangled this businessl But there
                 is a microphone right there to catch
                 the last gurgles, and Technicolor
                 to photograph the red, swollen tongue!



                            GILLIS
                 Ssh! You'll wake up that monkey.

                            NORMA
                 Get out!

          Gillis starts down the stairs.

                            GILLIS
                 Next time I'll bring my autograph
                 album along, or maybe a hunk of
                 cement and ask for your footprints.

          He is halfway down the staircase when he is
          stopped by

                            NORMA
                 Just a minute, you!

                            GILLIS
                 Yeah?

                            NORMA
                 You're a writer, you said.

                            GILLIS
                 Why?

          Norma starts down the stairs.

                            NORMA
                 Are you or aren't you?

                            GILLIS
                 I think that's what it says on my
                 driver's license.

                            NORMA
                 And you have written pictures,
                 haven't you?

                            GILLIS
                 Sure have.  The last one I
                 wrote was about cattle rustlers.
                 Before they were through with it,
                 the whole thing played on a
                 torpedo boat.

          Norma has reached him at the bottom of the staircase.

                            NORMA
                 I want to ask you something.
                 Come in here.

          She leads him into


  A-33    THE HUGE LIVING ROOM

          It is dark and damp and filled with black oak and
          red velvet furniture which looks like crappy props
          from the Mark of Zorro set.  Along the main wall,
          a gigantic fireplace has been freezing for years.
          On the gold piano is a galaxy of photographs of
          Norma Desmond in her various roles.  On one wall
          is a painting -- a California Gold Rush scene,
          Carthay Circle school.  (We will learn later that
          it hides a motion picture screen.)

          One corner is filled with a large pipe organ, and
          as Norma and Gillis enter, there is a grizzly
          moaning sound.  Gillis looks around.

                            NORMA
                 The wind gets in that blasted
                 pipe organ.  I ought to have
                 it taken out.

                            GILLIS
                 Or teach it a better tune.

          Norma has led him to the card tables which stand
          side by side near a window.  They are piled high
          with papers scrawled in a large, uncertain hand.

                            NORMA
                 How long is a movie script these
                 days?  I mean, how many pages?

                            GILLIS
                 Depends on what it is -- a Donald
                 Duck or Joan or Arc.

                            NORMA
                 This is to be a very important
                 picture.  I have written it
                 myself.  Took me years.

                            GILLIS
                      (Looking at the piles
                       of script)
                 Looks like enough for six impor-
                 tant pictures.

                            NORMA
                 It's the story or Salome.  I
                 think I'll have DeMille direct it.

                            GILLIS
                 Uh-huh.


                            NORMA
                 We've made a lot of pictures
                 together.

                            GILLIS
                 And you'll play Salome?

                            NORMA
                 Who else ?

                            GILLIS
                 Only asking.  I did't know
                 you were planning a comeback.

                            NORMA
                 I hate that word.  It is a return.
                 A return to the millions of people
                 who have never forgiven me for
                 deserting the screen.

                            GILLIS
                 Fair enough.

                            NORMA
                 Salome -- what a woman! What a
                 part! The Princess in love with
                 a Holy man.  She dances the Dance
                 of the Seven Veils.  He rejects
                 her, so she demands his head on a
                 golden tray, kissing his cold, dead
                 lips.

                            GILLIS
                 They'll love it in Pomona.

                            NORMA
                      (Taking it straight)
                 They will love it every place.
                      (She reaches for a
                       batch of pages from
                       the heap)
                 Read it.  Read the scene just
                 before she has him killed!

                            GILLIS
                 Right now?  Never let another
                 writer read your stuff.  He
                 may steal it.

                            NORMA
                 I am not afraid.  Read it!

                            NORMA (Cont'd)
                      (Calling)
                 Max!  Max!
                      (To Gillis)
                 Sit down.  Is there enough light?

                            GILLIS
                 I've got twenty-twenty vision.

          Max has entered.

                            NORMA
                 Bring something to drink.

                            MAX
                 Yes.  Madame.

          He leaves.  Norma turns to Gillis again.

                            NORMA
                 I said sit down.

          There is compulsion in her voice.

          Gillis looks at her                   GILLIS' VOICE
          and starts slowly          Well.  I had no pressing
          reading.                   engagement, and she'd men-
                                     tioned something to drink..
          Max comes in, wheeling     Sometimes it's interesting
          a wicker tea wagon on      to see just how bad bad
          which are two bottles o    writing can be.  This prom-
          f champagne and two        ised to go the limit.  I
          red Venetian glasses,      wondered what a handwriting
          a box of zwieback and      expert would make of that
          a jar of caviar.  Norma    childish scrawl of hers.
          sits on her feet.  deep    Max wheeled in some champagne
          in a chair, a gold ring    and some caviar.  Later, I
          on her forefinger with     found out that Max was the
          a clip which holds a       only other person in that
          cigarette.  She gets up    grim Sunset castle, and I
          and forces on Gillis       found out a few other things
          another batch of script,   about him... As for her, she
          goes back to her chair.    sat coiled up like a watch
                                     spring, her cigarette
                                     clamped in a curious holder...
                                     I could sense her eyes on me
                                     from behind those dark
                                     glasses, defying me not to
                                     like what I read, or maybe
                                     begging me in her own proud
                                     way to like it.  It meant
                                     so much to her...



  A-34    SHOT OF THE                       GILLIS' VOICE
          CEILING                It sure was a cozy set-up.
                                 That bundle of raw nerves,and
          PAN DOWN to the moan-  Max, and a dead monkey upstair
          ing organ.  PAN OVER   and the wind wheezing through
          TO THE ENTRANCE DOOR.  that organ once in a while.
          Max opens it, and a    Later on, just for comedy
          solemn-faced man in    relief, the real guy arrived
          undertaker's clothes   with a baby coffin.  It was
          brings in a small      all done with great dignity.
          white coffin.  (Thru   He must have been a very
          these shots the room   important chimp.  The great
          has been growing       grandson of King Kong, maybe.
          duskier.)

          DISSOLVE TO:


  A-35    GILLIS                 It got to be eleven.  I was
                                 feeling a little sick at my
          reading.  The lamp     stomach, what with that sweet
          beside him is now      champagne and that tripe I'd
          really paying its      been reading -- that silly
          way in the dark room.  hodgepodge of melodramatic
          A lot of the manu-     plots.  However, by then I'd
          script pages are       started concocting a little
          piled on the floor     plot of my own...
          around his feet.  A
          half-empty champagne
          glass stands on the
          arm of his chair.

          THE CAMERA SLOWLY DRAWS BACK to include Norma
          Desmond sitting in the dusk, just as she was before.
          Gillis puts down a batch of script.  There is a
          little pause.

                           NORMA
                     (Impatiently)
                 Well?

                           GILLIS
                 This is fascinating.

                           NORMA
                 Of course it is.

                           GILLIS
                 Maybe it's a little long and
                 maybe there are some repetitions...
                 but you're not a professional
                 writer.

                            NORMA
                 I wrote that with my heart.

                            GILLIS
                 Sure you did.  That's what makes
                 it great.  What it needs is a
                 little more dialogue.

                            NORMA
                 What for?  I can say anything I
                 want with my eyes.

                            GILLIS
                 It certainly could use a pair of
                 shears and a blue pencil.

                            NORMA
                 I will not have it butchered.

                            GILLIS
                 Of course not.  But it ought to
                 be organized.  Just an editing
                 job.  You can find somebody.

                            NORMA
                 Who?  I'd have to have somebody
                 I can trust.  When were you born --
                 I mean, what sign of the zodiac?

                            GILLIS
                 I don't know.

                            NORMA
                 What month?

                            GILLIS
                 December twenty-first.

                            NORMA
                 Sagittarius.  I like Sagittarians.
                 You can trust them.

                            GILLIS
                 Thank you.

                            NORMA
                 I want you to do this work.

                            GILLIS
                 Me?  I'm busy.  Just finished
                 one script.  I'm due on another
                 assignment.

                            NORMA
                 I don't care.


                            GILLIS
                 You know, I'm pretty expensive.
                 I get five hundred a week.

                            NORMA
                 I wouldn't worry about money.
                 I'll make it worth your while.

                            GILLIS
                 Maybe I'd better take the rest
                 of the script home and read it -

                            NORMA
                 Oh no.  I couldn't let it out
                 of my house.  You'll have to
                 finish it here.

                            GILLIS
                 It's getting kind of late --

                            NORMA
                 Are you married, Mr.  -- ?

                            GILLIS
                 The name is Gillis.  I'm single.

                            NORMA
                 Where do you live?

                            GILLIS
                 Hollywood.  The Alto Nido Apart-
                 ments.

                            NORMA
                 There's something wrong with
                 your car, you said.

                            GILLIS
                 There sure is.

                            NORMA
                 You can stay here.

                            GILLIS
                 I'll come early tomorrow.

          Norma takes off her glasses.

                            NORMA
                 Nonsense.  There's room over the
                 garage.  Max will take you there...Max!

          THE CAMERA MOVES                  GILLIS' VOICE
          TOWARD NORMA'S FACE,   She sure could say a lot of
          right up to her        things with those pale eyes of
          eyes.                  hers.  They'd been her trade
                                 mark.  They'd made her the Num-
                                 ber One Vamp of another era.  I
                                 remember a rather florid des-
                                 cription in an old fan magazine
                                 which said: "Her eyes are like
                                 two moonlit waterholes, where
                                 strange animals come to drink."

          DISSOLVE TO:



  A-36    SMALL STAIRCASE, LEAD-          GILLIS'VOICE
          ING TO ROOM OVER GARAGE  I felt kind of pleased with
                                   the way I'd handled the sit-
          Max, an electric light   uation.  I'd dropped the hook,
          bulb in his hand, is     and she'd snapped at it.  Now
          leading Gillis up.       my car would be safe down
          Gillis carries a batch   below, while I did a patch-
          of the manuscript.       up job on the script.  And
                                   there should be plenty of
                                   money in it...

          Max pushes open a door at the top of the stairs.

                            MAX
                      (Opening the door)
                 I made your bed this afternoon.

                            GILLIS
                 Thanks.
                      (On second thought)
                 How did you know I was going to
                 stay, this afternoon?

          Max doesn't answer.  He walks across to the bed,
          screws a bulb in the open socket above it.  The
          light goes on, revealing:

  A-37    A GABLED BEDROOM

          There are dirty windows on two sides, and dingy wall-
          paper on the cracked plaster walls.  For furniture
          there is a neatly made bed, a table and a few chairs
          which might have been discarded from the main house.

                            MAX
                 This room has not been used for
                 a long time.

                            GILLIS
                 It will never make house Beautiful.
                 I guess it's O.K. for one night.

          Max gives him an enigmatic look.

                            MAX
                      (Pointing)
                 There is the bathroom.  I put in
                 soap and a toothbrush.

                            GILLIS
                 Thanks.
                      (He starts taking off
                       his coat)
                 Say, she's quite a character,
                 that Norma Desmond.

                            MAX
                 She was the greatest.  You wouldn't
                 know.  You are too young.  In one
                 week she got seventeen thousand fan
                 letters.  Men would bribe her mani-
                 curist to get clippings from her
                 fingernails.  There was a Maharajah
                 who came all the way from Hyderabad
                 to get one of her stockings.  Later,
                 he strangled himself with it.

                            GILLIS
                 I sure turned into an interesting
                 driveway.

                            MAX
                 You did, sir.
                                              GILLIS' VOICE
          He goes out.  Gillis     I pegged him as slightly
          looks after him, hangs   cuckoo, too.  A stroke maybe.
          his coat over a chair,   Come to think of it, the
          walks over to the win-   whole place seemed to have
          dow, pulls down the      been stricken with a kind of
          rickety Venetian blind.  creeping paralysis, out of
          As he does so, he looks  beat with the rest of the
          down at:                 world, crumbling apart in
                                   slow motion ...

  A-38    THE TENNIS COURT OF                 GILLIS' VOICE
          THE DESMOND HOUSE        There was a tennis court, or
          (MOONLIGHT)              rather the ghost of a tennis
                                   court, with faded markings
          The cement surface is    and sagging net ...
          cracked in many places,
          and weeds are growing
          high.


  A-39    GILLIS - IN THE WINDOW

          He looks away from the court to:


  A-40    THE DESMOND SWIMMING
          POOL
                                              GILLIS' VOICE
          There is no water in     And of course she had a pool.
          it, and hunks of         Who didn't then?  Mabel Norm-
          mosaic which lines its   and and John Gilbert must
          enormous basin are       have swum in it ten thousand
          broken away.             midnights ago, and Vilma Banky
                                   and Rod La Roque.  It was
                                   empty now....or was it?



  A-41    GILLIS - IN THE WINDOW

          He stares down, his stomach slowly turning.


  A-42    THE SWIMMING POOL

          At the bottom of the basin a great rat is eating a
          decaying or,ange.  From the inlet pipe crawl two
          other rats, who join battle with the first rat over
          the orange.


  A-43    GILLIS -IN THE WINDOW

          He starts away, but some-           GILLIS' VOICE
          thing attracts his atten-      There was something
          tion.  He turns back and       else going on below:
          looks down again.              the last rites for
                                         that hairy old chimp,
                                         performed with the
  A-44    THE LAWN BELOW                 utmost seriousness --
                                         as if she were laying
          Norma Desmond and Max are      to rest an only child.
          carrying the white coffin      Was her life really
          towards a small grave as       as empty as that?
          which has been dug in the
          dead turf.  Norma carries
          one of the candelabra, all
          of its candles flickering
          in the wind.  They reach
          the grave and lower the
          coffin into it.  Then,
          Norma lighting his task
          with the candelabrum, Max
          takes a spade from the
          loose earth and starts
          filling in the grave.

  A-45    GILLIS - IN THE WINDOW

          He watches the scene be-            GILLIS' VOICE
          low, then turns into the       It was all very queer,
          room, goes to the door         but queerer things
          to lock it.  There is no       were yet to come.
          key, and only a hole
          where the lock has been
          gouged out.  Gillis moves
          a heavy overstuffed chair
          in front of the door, then
          walks towards the bed,
          throws himself on it,
          picking up some of the
          manuscript pages to read.

          DISSOLVE

                  END OF SEQUENCE "A"

                         SEQUENCE "B"

           DISSOLVE IN ON:

   B-1    LONG SHOT THE DESMOND
          HOUSE - (MORNING)

          The day is overcast.  The     SOUND: (Distant organ
          house is shrouded in low      music - improvisations
          fog.                          on an odd, mournful
                                        theme - not too loud,
                                        continuing throughout
   B-2    THE TENNIS COURT, blurred     the scene.)
          over with fog.


   B-3    THE EMPTY SWIMMING POOL
          Its dark outline even more
          melancholy under the misty
          blanket.


   B-4    THE ROOM OVER THE GARAGE

          Muted daylight seeps               GILLIS' VOICE
          through the blinds.  Gillis   That night I'd had a
          lies on the bed, under a      mixed-up dream.  In it
          shabby quilt.  The manu-      was an organ grinder.
          script is beside him, some    I couldn't see his
          of the pages scattered on     face, but the organ
          the floor.  He is just        was all draped in
          opening his eyes. It takes    black, and a chimp was
          him a moment to adjust him-   dancing for pennies.
          self to the strange sur-      When I opened my eyes,
          roundings.  His eyes, wander- the music was still
          ing about the room. suddenly  there... Where was
          stop, startled. He lifts      I?
          himself on one elbow and
          stares at -


   B-5    THE DOOR

          The heavy chair he had set    Oh yes, in that empty
          against it the night before   room over her garage.
          has been pushed back.  The    Only it wasn't empty
          door is wide ajar.            any more.  Somebody
                                        had brought in all my
                                        belongings - my
   B-6    GILLIS                        books, my typewriter,
                                        my clothes...
          He jumps out of bed.  He
          wears, shirt, trousers
          and socks.  Suddenly he
          realizes that all his
          possessions have                  GILLIS' VOICE
          been brought in. In        What was going on?
          the closet hang his
          shirts.  His books and
          typewriter are neatly
          arranged on the table.
          His phonograph-radio
          combination is all
          installed.  Gillis looks
          around startled, then
          sits down and starts
          putting on his moccasins
          hastily.

          DISSOLVE TO:


   B-7    A PAIR OF HANDS IN WHITE GLOVES, PLAYING THE ORGAN

          PULL BACK: They belong to Max von Mayerling.  He
          is sitting erect, his bull neck taut as a wrestler's
          as he rights out somber chord after somber chord.
          He sits in a shaft of gray light coming from an open
          French window.

          Through the far archway, Gillis storms into the big
          room.

                            GILLIS
                Hey, you -- Max -- whatever -your-
                name-is -- what are my things doing
                here?

          No answer.

                            GILLIS
                I'm talking to you.  My clothes
                and things are up in the room.

                            MAX
                Naturally.  I brought them myself.

                            GILLIS
                      (Furiously)
                Is that so!

                            MAX
                Why are you so upset?  Is there
                anything missing?

                            GILLIS
                Who said you could?  Who asked you to?

          Norma Desmond's shadow moves into the shaft of
          light.

                             NORMA'S VOICE
                  I did.

          Gillis looks around.

          On the couch by the fireplace reclines Norma Desmond,
          dressed in a negligee.  She rises.

                             NORMA
                  I don't know why you should be
                  so upset.  Stop that playing,
                  Max.
                       (To Gillis again)
                  It seemed like a good idea --
                  if we are to work together.

                             GILLIS
                  Look, I'm supposed to fix up
                  your script.  There's nothing
                  in the deal about my staying
                  here.

                             NORMA
                  You'll like it here.

                             GILLIS
                  Thanks for the invitation, but
                  I have my own apartment.

                             NORMA
                  You can't work in an apartment
                  where you owe three months' rent.

                             GILLIS
                  I'll take care of that.

                             NORMA
                  It's all taken care of.  It's
                  all paid for.

                             GILLIS
                  I'm used to paying my own bills.

                             NORMA
                  You proud boy, why didn't you tell
                  me you were having difficulties.

                             GILLIS
                  Okay.  We'll deduct it from my
                  salary.

                            NORMA
                  Now, now, don't let's be small
                  about such matters.  We won't
                  keep books.
                      (To Max)
                  Go on, unpack Mr. Gillis' things.

                            GILLIS
                  Unpack nothing.  I didn't say
                  I was staying.

                            NORMA
                      (Her glasses off again)
                  Suppose you make up your mind.
                  Do you want this job or don't you?

          DISSOLVE TO:


   B-8    BIG ROOM, NORMA DESMOND'S
          HOUSE - (DAY)                       GILLIS' VOICE

          Gillis sits at an impro-     So I let him unpack my
          vised table, his typewriter  things. I wanted the
          in front of him, working     dough, and I wanted to
          hard at the manuscript.      get out of there as
          Pencils, shears and a        quickly as possible.
          paste-pot at hand.           I thought if I really
                                       got going I could toss
          Facing him at some dis-      it off in a couple or
          tance sits Norma,dressed     weeks.  But it wasn't
          in another version of her    so simple, getting some
          favorite lounging pajamas,   coherence into that wild,
          the cigaette contraption     scrambled melodrama
          on her finger.  She is       she'd concocted.  What
          autographing large photo-    made it tougher was that
          graphs of herself and put-   she was around all the
          ting them in envelopes.      time -- hovering over
                                       me, afraid I'd do injury
                                       to that precious brain-
                                       child of hers.

          Gillis takes two or three pages from Norma's hand-
          written script, crosses them out and puts them to
          one side.

          Norma rises, crosses towards Gillis, looks over his
          shoulder.

                            NORMA
                  What's that?

                            GILLIS
                  Just a scene I cut out.

                            NORMA
                  What scene?

                            GILLIS
                  The one where you go to the slave
                  market.  You can cut right to the
                  scene where John the Baptist -

                            NORMA
                  Cut away from me?

                            GILLIS
                  Honestly, it's a little old hat.
                  They don't want that any more.

                            NORMA
                  They don't?  Then why do they still
                  write me fan letters every day.
                  Why do they beg me for my photo-
                  graphs?  Because they want to see
                  me, me, me!  Norma Desmond.

                            GILLIS
                      (Resigned)
                  Okay.

          He pulls the page from his typewriter. As he does
          so he glances over towards Norma.
                                              GILLIS' VOICE
          On the table in front        I didn't argue with her.
          of her are the photo-        You don't yell at a
          graphs which she is sign-    sleepwalker-- he may fall
          ing. On the long table       and break his neck.That's
          in the living room is a      it -- she was still
          gallery of photographs       sleepwalking along the
          in various frames -- all     giddy heights of a lost
          Norma Desmond. On the        career --plain crazy
          piano more photographs.      when it came to that one
          Above the piano an oil       subject: her celluloid
          portrait of her.  On the     self, the great Norma
          highboy beside him still     Desmond.  How could She
          more photographs.            breathe in that house,
                                       so crowded with Norma
          DISSOLVE TO:                 Desmonds? More Norma
                                       Desmond and still more
                                       Norma Desmond.
   B-9    THE BIG ROOM - (NIGHT)
                                              GILLIS' VOICE
          Shooting towards the big     It wasn't all work - of
          Gold Rush painting. Max,     course.  Two or three
          white gloves and all,        times a week Max would
          steps into the shot, shoves  haul up that enormous oil
          the painting up towards      painting that had been
          the ceiling,revealing a      presented to her by some
          motion picture screen.       Nevada Chamber of Com-
          Max exits.                   merce, and we'd see a
                                       movie,right in her
                                       living room.

   B-1O   NORMA AND GILLIS
                                               GILLIS' VOICE
          They sit on a couch,facing    "So much nicer than going
          the screen. On a table in     out," she'd say.  The
          front of them are champagne,  plain fact was that she
          cigarettes and coffee.        was afraid of that world
          Above their heads are the     outside.  Afraid it
          typical openings for a pro-   would remind her that
          jector. The lights go off.    time had passed.
          From the opening above
          their heads shoots the wide
          beam of light.


   B-11   MAX, IN THE PROJECTION        They were silent movies,
          BOOTH BEHIND THE ROOM         and Max would run the
                                        projection machine, which
          The light of the machine      was just as well -- it
          flickering over his face,     kept him from giving us
          which is frozen, a somber     an accompaniment on
          enigma.                       that wheezing organ.

   B-12   NORMA AND GILLIS
                                        She'd sit very close to
          watching the screen.          me, and she'd smell of
          Gillis looks down and sees    tuberoses, which is not
          that Norma's hand is clasp-   my favorite perfume, not
          ing his ann tight. He         by a long shot. Sometines
          doesn't like it much but      as we watched, she'd c
          he can't do anything about    lutch my arm or my hand
          it. However. when she for     forgetting she was my
          a second lets go his arm      employer becoming just a
          to pick up a glass of         fan, excited about that
          champagne, he gently with-    actress up there on the
          draws his arm, leans away     screen....I guess I don't
          from her and crosses his      have to tell you who the
          arms to discourage any        star was.  They were
          resumption of her approach.   always her pictures --
          Norma puts the glass down     that's all she wanted
          doesn't find his arn, but     to see.
          is not aware of any signifi-
          cance in his maneuver. They
          both watch the screen.


   B-13   THE OTHER END OF THE BIG ROOM. WITH THE SCREEN

          On it flickers a famous scene from one of Norma's old
          silent pictures.  It is not to be a funny scene.  It
          is old-fashioned, but shows her incredible beauty
          and the screen presence which made her the great star
          of her day.

   B-14   NORMA AND GILLIS ON THE COUCH

                           NORMA
                Still wonderful, isn't it?  And
                no dialogue.  We didn't need
                dialogue.  We had faces.  There
                just aren't any faces like that
                any more.  Well, maybe one --
                Garbo.

          In a sudden flareup she jumps to her feet and stands
          in the flickering beam of light.

                           NORMA
                Those idiot producers!  Those
                imbeciles!  Haven't they got any
                eyes?  Have they forgotten what
                a star looks like?  I'll show them.
                I'll be up there again.  So help me!

          DISSOLVE TO:


   B-15   THE BIG ROOM - (NIGHT)

          It is apparently empty.            GILLIS' VOICE
          The elaborate lamps         Sometimes there'd be a
          make pools of light.        little bridge game in the
                                      house, at a twentieth-of-
          THE CAMERA PULLS BACK       a cent a point.  I'd get
          AND PANS to reveal a        half her winnings.  Once
          card table around           they ran up to seventy
          which sit Norma and         cents, which was about
          three friends - three       the only cash money I
          actors of her period.       ever got.  The others
          They sit erect and play     around the table would
          with grim seriousness.      be actor friends - dim
                                      figures you may still
          Beside Norma sits           remember from the silent
          Gillis, kibitzing on a      days.  I used to think of
          game which bores him        them as her Wax Works.
          extremely.  An ashtray
          on the card table is
          full and Norma holds
          it out for Gillis to
          take away.  He crosses
          the room to the fire-
          place. but his eyes
          fall on the entrance
          door and he stops.


   B-16   THE ENTRANCE HALL - (FROM GILLIS' POINT OF VIEW)

          Max stands in the open door.  Outside are the two
          men who came to the apartment for Gillis' car.

   B-17   GILLIS

          He steps back so that he cannot be seen from the
          door.  A second later Max appears, looking for him.

                            MAX
                      (Quietly)
                 Some men are here.  They asked
                 for you.

                            GILLIS
                 I'm not here.

                            MAX
                 That's what I told them.

                            GILLIS
                 Good.

                            MAX
                 They found your car in the
                 garage.  They are going to tow
                 it away.

          Gillis doesn't know what to do.  From offstage
          comes:

                            NORMA'S VOICE
                 The ashtray, Joe dear!  Can we
                 have the ashtray?

          Gillis dumps the cigarette butts into the cold fire-
          place, crosses to the bridge table, puts the
          ashtray down, leans over and speaks into Norma's ear.

                            GILLIS
                 I want to talk to you for a
                 minute.

                            NORMA
                 Not now, my dear.  I'm playing
                 three no trump.

                            GILLIS
                 They've come for my car.

                            NORMA
                 Please.  Now I've forgotten how
                 many spades are out.

                            GILLIS
                 I need some money right now.

                            NORMA
                 Can't you wait till I'm dummy?

   3.22.49                  GILLIS
                 No.

                            NORMA
                      (Angry by now)
                 Please!

          Gillis stands frustrated, hideously embarrassed
          by the stares of the waxworks. He turns away
          and hurries to the door.


   B-18   ENTRANCE DOOR TO THE HOUSE

          It is half open. Gillis comes into the shot
          and, taking cover, looks out.


   B-19   COURTYARD (FROM GILLIS' ANGLE)

          The men from the finance company are cranking up
          the car.  Max stands watching silently.  When they
          finish the cranking job, the men climb into the
          front seat of the truck.


   B-2O   GILLIS - AT THE DOOR

          Over the shot the SOUND of the truck being started
          and the cars moving away.  Gillis moves out into
          the courtyard and stands staring after the car.
          From the house comes Norma.

                            NORMA
                 Now what is it?  Where's the
                 fire?

                            GILLIS
                 I've lost my car.

                            NORMA
                 Oh...and I thought it was a
                 matter of life and death.

                            GILLIS
                 It is to me.  That's why I came
                 to this house.  That's why I took
                 this job -- ghost writing!

                            NORMA
                 Now you're being silly.  We don't
                 need two cars.  We have a car.  And
                 not one of thuse cheap new things
                 made of chromium and spit.  An
                 Isotta-Fraschini.  Have you ever
                 heard of Isotta-Fraschinis?  All
                 hand-made.  Cost me twenty-eight
                 thousand dollars.

          THE CAMERA HAS PANNED over to the garage and FOCUSES
          on the dirty Isotta-Fraschini on its blocks.

          DISSOLVE TO:


   B-21   NORMA'S ISOTTA-FRASCHINI
          DRIVING IN THE HILLS
          ABOVE SUNSET (DAY)

          Max is at the wheel,               GILLIS' VOICE
          dressed as usual except     So Max got that old bus
          for a chauffeurfs cap.      down off its blocks and
                                      polished it up.  She'd
                                      take me for rides in the
   B-22   INSIDE THE CAR              hills above Sunset.

          Gillis sits beside Norma,   The whole thing was up-
          who is wearing a smart      holstered in leopard
          tailleur and her eternal    skin, and had one of
          sun glasses. Gillis         those car phones, all
          wears his sport jacket-     gold-plated.
          flannel trousers-moccasin
          combinatIon.

          He sits uncomfortably. Norma is studying him.

                            NORMA
                 That's a dreadful shirt you're
                 wearing.

                            GILLIS
                 What's wrong with It?

                            NORMA
                 Nothing, if you work in a fill-
                 ing station.  And I'm getting
                 rather bored with that sport
                 jacket, and those same baggy
                 pants.
                      (She picks up
                       the car phone)
                 Max, what's a good men's shop
                 in town?  The very best...
                 Well, go there !

                            GILLIS
                 I don't need any clothes, and
                 I certainly don't want you buy-
                 ing them for --

                          NORMA
                   Why begrudge me a little fun?
                   I just want you to look nice,
                   my stray little boy.

          By this time Max has made a U-turn.

          QUICK DISSOLVE TO:


   B-23   INT. MEN'S DEPARTMENT, AN ELEGANT WILSHIRE STORE

          Gillis stands in front of a full-length triple mirror,
          surrounded by a couple of salesmen and the tailor, who
          is busily working out alterations.

          Gillis wears a double-breasted gray flannel coat with
          chalk stripes.  His trousers belong to another suit
          of glen plaid.  Norma is running the show.

                                NORMA
                   There's nothing like gray flannel
                   with a chalk stripe.
                      (she points at
                       the trousers)
                   This one single-breasted, of course.
                       (to another salesman)
                   Now we need a topcoat.  Let's see
                   what you have in camel's hair.

          The salesman leaves.

                                NORMA
                   How about some evening clothes?

                                GILLIS
                   I don't need a tuxedo.

                                NORMA
                   Of course you do.  A tuxedo and
                   tails.

                                GILLIS
                   Tails.  That's ridiculous.

                                NORMA
                   You'll need them for parties.
                   You'll need them for New Year's
                   Eve.
                       (to a salesman)
                   Where are your evening clothes?

                            SALESMAN
                    This way, Madame.

          He leads her off.  The other salesman arrives with a
          selection of topcoats.

                            SALESMAN
                    Here are some camel hairs, but
                    I'd like you just to feel this
                    one.  It's Vicuna.  Of course,
                    it's a little more expensive.

                            GILLIS
                    A camel's hair will do.

                            SALESMAN
                         (With an insulting
                          inflection)
                    As long as the lady is paying
                    for it, why not take the Vicuna?

          DISSOLVE:




                  END OF SEQUENCE "B"


                         SEQUENCE "C"

          DISSOLVE IN:

  C-1     LONG SHOT DESMOND HOUSE

          A day in December.  Rain.

          QUICK DISSOLVE TO:


  C-2     INT. ROOM OVER GARAGE

          Water is drizzling from            GILLIS' VOICE
          two or three spots in the   The last week in December
          ceiling into pans and       the rains came -- a great
          bowls set to catch it,      big package of rain.
          one bowl right on the       Over-sized, like every-
          bed.  The room is almost    thing else in California.
          emptied of Gillis' be-
          longings by now.  Max       It came right through
          is carrying out a hand-     the old roof of my room
          full of new suits on        above the garage.  She
          hangers.  He has a          had Max move me to the
          dressing gown over his      main house.  I didn't
          shoulder.  Gillis holds     much like the idea -- the
          a stack of shirts, his      only time I could have
          typewriter, and some        to myself was in that
          manuscript.  He surveys     room -- but it was better
          the room for the last       than sleeping in a rain-
          time, to see whether        coat and galoshes.
          he's forgotten any-
          thing.  He has.  He
          puts down the typewriter
          and picks up from under
          the bed a pair of very
          smart red leather bedroom
          slippers.  He tucks them
          under his arm, picks up
          the typewriter and leaves.

          QUICK DISSOLVE TO:


  C-3     A BEDROOM IN TIiE MAIN HOUSE

          It is obviously a man's room -- heavy Spanish
          furniture -- one wall nothing but a closet with
          shelves and drawers for shirts and shoes.  Max is
          hanging up the suits.  Gillis throws the shirts on
          a big chair, tosses the slippers at the foot of the
          bed, places the typewriter and manuscript on a desk
          at the window.

                            GILLIS
                 Whose room was this?

                            MAX
                 It was the room of the husband.
                 Or of the husbands, I should say.
                 Madame has been married three
                 times.

          Slightly embarrassed, Gillis picks up his toilet
          kit with razor, toothbrushes, soap, etc., and starts
          towards the bathroom, pausing en route at a rain-
          splattered window.

                            GILLIS
                 I guess this is the one you
                 can see Catalina from.  Only
                 this isn't the day.

                 He proceeds towards the half-opened door leading
                 to the bathroom.  Something strikes his attention
                 and he stops.  As in the door to the room above
                 the garage, this lock, too, has been gouged out.

                            GILLIS
                 Hey, what's this with the
                 door? There isn't any lock.

                            MAX
                 There are no locks anywhere
                 in this house.

          He points to the entrance door of the room, and to
          another door.

                            GILLIS
                 How come?

                            MAX
                 The doctor suggested it.

                            GILLIS
                 What doctor?

                            MAX
                 Madame's doctor.  She has moments
                 of melancholy.  There have been
                 some suicide attempts.

                            GILLIS
                 Uh-huh?

                            MAX
                 We have to be very careful.  No
                 sleeping pills, no razor blades.
                 We shut off the gas in her bed-
                 room.

                            GILLIS
                 Why?  Her career?  She got enough
                 out of it.  She's not forgotten.
                 She still gets those fan letters.

                            MAX
                 I wouldn't look too closely at the
                 postmarks.

                            GILLIS
                 You send them.  Is that it, Max?

                            MAX
                 I'd better press your evening
                 clothes, sir.  You have not for-
                 gotten Madame's New Year's party.

                            GILLIS
                 No, I haven't.  I suppose all
                 the waxworks are coming?

                            MAX
                 I don't know, sir.  Madame made
                 the arrangements.

          Max leaves.  Gillis comes out of the bathroom, picks
          up his shirts, goes over to a closet, opens it.  As
          he does so one of the doors without a lock swings
          slightly open.  Gillis looks through the half-open
          door and sees.


  C-4     NORMA DESMOND'S ROOM

          It is empty.  The rainy            GILLIS' VOICE
          day does nothing to        There it was again - that
          help its gloom.            room of hers, all satin and
                                     ruffles, and that bed like
                                     a gilded rowboat.  The per-
                                     fect setting for a silent
                                     movie queen.  Poor devil,
                                     still waving proudly to a
                                     parade which had long since
                                     passed her by.
          He pushes the door shut
          and walks back into the
          room.

          DISSOLVE TO:


  C-5     STAIRCASE OF DESMOND
          HOUSE (NIGHT)

          Gillis is coming down the         GILLIS' VOICE
          stairs in his tailcoat        It was at her New Year's
          adjusting the handkerchief    party that I found out
          in his pocket.  He obviously  how she felt about me.
          feels a little uneasy in      Maybe I'd been an idiot
          this outfit.  From below      not to have sensed it
          comes a tango of the Twen-    was coming - that sad,
          ties.  played by a small      embarrassing revelation.
          orchestra.  Gillis stops
          in the archway leading to
          the big room and looks
          around.

  C-6     THE BIG ROOM has been deco-
          rated for the occasion with
          laurel garlands.  Dozens of
          candles in all the sconces
          and candelabra are ablaze.
          Their flickering flames are
          reflected in the waxed sur=
          face of the tile floor.
          There is a buffet, with
          buckets of champagne and
          caviar on ice.  In one corner
          on a little platform banked
          with palms.  a four-piece
          orchestra is playing.

          At the buffet are Max and Norma.  She is drinking
          a glass of champagne.  She is wearing a diamonte
          evening dress.  very high style.  with long black
          gloves and a headdress of paradise feathers.  Her
          eyes fall on Gillis.  She puts down the glass of
          champagne.  picks up a gardenia boutonniere and
          moves toward him.

                            NORMA
                 Joe,  you look absolutely
                 divine.  Turn around!

                            GILLIS
                      (Embarrassed}
                 Please.

                            NORMA
                 Come on!

          Gillis makes a slow 36O-degree turn.

                            NORMA
                 Perfect.  Wonderful shoulders.
                 And I love that line.


          She indicates the V from his shoulders to his hips.

                            GILLIS
                 All padding.  Don't let it fool
                 you.

                            NORMA
                 Come here!

          She puts the gardenia on his lapel.

                            GILLIS
                 You know, to me dressing up
                 was always just putting on
                 my dark blue suit.

                            NORMA
                 I don't like those studs they've
                 sent.  I want you to have pearls.
                 Nice big pearls.

                            GILLIS
                 Now, I'm not going to wear ear-
                 rings, I can tell you that.

                            NORMA
                 Cute.  Let's have some drinks.

          She leads him over to the buffet.

                            GILLIS
                 Shouldn't we wait for the others?

                            NORMA
                      (Pointing at the floor)
                 Careful, it's slippery.  I
                 had it waxed.

          They reach the buffet.  Max is ready with two
          glasses of champagne.  Norma hands Gillis a glass.

                            NORMA
                 Here's to us.

          They drink.

                            NORMA
                 You know, this floor used to
                 be wood but I had it changed.
                 Valentino said there is nothing
                 like tiles for a tango.

          She opens her arms.



                            GILLIS
                 Not on the same floor with
                 Valentino!

                            NORMA
                 Just follow me.

          They start to tango.  After a moment --

                            NORMA
                 Don't bend back like that.

                            GILLIS
                 It's those feathers.  They tickle.

          Norma pulls the paradise feathers from her hair
          and tosses them away.


  C-7     THE ORCHESTRA

          As they play the tango, the musicians eye the danc-
          ing couple, take in the situation, exchange glances
          and turn away with professional discretion.


  C-8     NORMA AND GILLIS, TANGOING

          Gillis glances at his wrist watch.

                            GILLIS
                 It's a quarter past ten.  What
                 time are they supposed to get
                 here?

                            NORMA
                 Who?

                            GILLIS
                 The other guests?

                            NORMA
                 There are no other guests.  We
                 don't want to share this night
                 with other people.  This is for
                 you and me.

                            GILLIS
                 I understand some rich guy bought
                 up all the tickets for a perfor-
                 mance at the Metropolitan and sat
                 there listening to La Traviata,
                 all by himself.  He was afraid of
                 catching cold.


                            NORMA
                 Hold me tighter.

                            GILLIS
                 Come midnight, how about blind-
                 folding the orchestra and smash-
                 ing champagne glasses on Max's
                 head?

                            NORMA
                 You think this is all very funny.

                            GILLIS
                 A little.

                            NORMA
                 Is it funny that I'm in love
                 with you?

                            GILLIS
                 What's that?

                            NORMA
                 I'm in love with you.  Don't you
                 know that? I've been in love
                 with you all along.

          They dance on.  Gillis is acutely embarrassed.
          THE CAMERA SLOWLY PULLS BACK, PANS past the faces
          of the musicians, who play on with a rather overe-
          mphasized lack of interest.  Finally it winds up
          on Max, behind the buffet.  He stands watching Gillis,
          a faint trace of pity in his eyes.

          DISSOLVE TO:


  C-9     NORMA'S FINGER, WITH THE
          CIGARETTE GADGET, as she          GILLIS' VOICE
          inserts a cigarette.        I'm sure a lot of you will
                                      laugh about this.  Ridicu-
                                      lous situation, wasn't it?
                                      -- a woman almost twice my
                                      age ...  It got to be about
                                      a quarter of eleven.  I
                                      felt caught, like a cig-
                                      arette in the prongs of
                                      that contraption on her
                                      finger.
          PULL BACK TO:

          NORMA AND GILLIS sitting on a couch in front of the
          cavernous fireplace.  Norma holds out her cigarette
          to Gillis, who lights it.


                            NORMA.
                 What a wonderful next year it's
                 going to be.  What fun we're going
                 to have.  I'II fill the pool for
                 you.  Or I'll open my house in
                 Malibu, and you can have the whole
                 ocean.  Or I'll buy you a boat
                 and we'll sail to Hawaii.

                            GILLIS
                 Stop it.  You aren't going to buy
                 me anything more.

                            NORMA
                 Don't be silly.
                      (She reaches under a
                       pillow of the couch
                       and brings out a
                       leather box)
                 Here.  I was going to give it to
                 you at midniglht.

          Gillis opens the box.  It contains a matched gold
          cigarette case and lighter.

                            NORMA
                 Read what's inside.

          Gillis snaps open the case.  Engraved inside the
          cover is: TO JOE FROM NORMA, and two bars of
          music.

                            GILLIS
                 What are the notes?

                            NORMA
                 "Mad about the boy."

                            GILLIS
                 Norma, I can't take it.  You've
                 bought me enough.

                            NORMA
                 Shut up.  I'm rich.  I'm richer
                 than all this new Hollywood trash.
                 I've got a million dollars.

                            GILLIS
                 Keep it.

                            NORMA
                 I own three blocks downtown.
                 I have oil in Bakersfield --
                 pumping, pumping, pumping.
                 What's it for but to buy us
                 anything we want.

                            GILLIS
                 Cut out that us business.

          He rises.

                            NORMA
                 What's the matter with you?

                            GILLIS
                 What right do you have to take
                 me for granted?

                            NORMA
                 What right? Do you want me to
                 tell you?

                            GILLIS
                 Has it ever occurred that I may
                 have a life of my own? That there
                 may be some girl I'm crazy about?

                            NORMA
                 Who? Some car hop, or a dress
                 extra?

                            GILLIS
                 Why not? What I'm trying to say
                 is that I'm all wrong for you.
                 You want a Valentino -- somebody
                 with polo ponies -- a big shot --

                            NORMA
                      (Getting up slowly)
                 What you're trying to say is
                 that you don't want me to love
                 you.  Is that it?

          Gillis doesn't answer.  Norma slaps his face and
          rushes from the room and upstairs.

          Gillis stands paralyzed, the slap burning his cheek.


  C-1O    THE TOP OF THE STAIRCASE AND CORRIDOR

          Norma rushes up the last few steps, down the corridor
          and into her bedroom, banging the door.  MOVE THE
          CAMERA toward the closed door, centering on the
          gouged-out lock.


  C-11    GILLIS, IN THE BIG ROOM

          He still stands motionless.  He glances around fur-
          tively, to see if his humiliation has been observed.


  C-12    THE ORCHESTRA

          The musicians are playing away.  They have turned
          their eyes away from Gillis rather too ostentatious-
          ly for comfort.


  C-13    GILLIS

          His eyes move over toward


  C-14    MAX

          He is subtler than the musicians.  He appears very
          busy at the buffet, putting empty bottles and used
          glasses on a tray.  He walks across the room with
          them.


  C-15    GILLIS

          He starts slowly out.  As he does so his long gold
          key chain catches on a carved ornament of the sofa
          and holds him for a second of additional embarrass-
          ment.  He yanks it loose and walks with as much
          nonchalance as he can muster to


  C-16    THE HALL

          Crossing towards the coat closet, Gillis throws a
          look upstairs.  Then he pulls the Vicuna coat from
          its hangar and slips into it as he crosses to the
          entrance door.  He opens the door on the darkness
          of the courtyard.


  C-17    EXT. DESMOND HOUSE 
          (NIGHT - RAIN)

          Gillis shuts the door.           GILLIS'VOICE
          He takes a few steps       I didn't know where I was
          forward, then stands       going.  I just had to get
          for a while breathing      out of there.  I had to be
          deep.  The rain is         with people my own age.  I
          balm to that cheek         had to hear somebody laugh
          where the slap still a     again.  I thought of Artie
          burns.  He walks for-      Green.  There was bound to
          ward with a great          be a New Year's shindig
          sense of relief.           going on in his apartment
                                     down on Las Palmas -- the
                                     hock shop set -- not a job
  C-18    DRIVEWAY LEADING TO        in the room.  but lots of
          	fun on the cuff.

          Gillis walks to the
          street, which is dark
          and empty.  He starts
          down Sunset in an
          Easterly direction.
          A car passes.  He
          tries to thumb a
          ride, without success.
          However, the second

          car, a florist's
          delivery wagon, stops.
          Gillis jumps in and the
          car drives off.

          DISSOLVE TO:

  C-19    ARTIE GREEN'S APARTMENT

          It is the most modest one-room affair, jam packed
          with young people flowing over into the miniature
          bathroom and the microscopic kitchenette.  The only
          drink being served is punch from a pressed-glass
          bowl -- but everybody is having a hell of a time.
          Most of the men are in slacks and sweaters, and only
          a few of the girls in something that vaguely suggests
          party dress.

          Abe Burroughs sits at a small, guest-festooned piano
          and sings Tokio Rose.  By the door, a group of young
          men and girls respond to the song by sing1ng Rinso
          White or Dentyne Chewing Gum or something similar,
          in the manner of a Bach choral.  Artie Green, a dark
          haired, pleasant-looking guy in his late twenties,
          is conducting with the ladle from the punch bowl.

          The door behind some of the singers is pushed open,
          jostling them out of their places.  In comes Gillis,
          his hair and face wet, the collar of his Vicuna coat
          turned up.  Artie stops conducting, but the commer-
          cial goes right on.

                            ARTIE
                 Well, what do you know ! Joe
                 Gillis !

                            GILLIS
                 Hi, Artie.

                            ARTIE
                 Where have you been keeping that
                 gorgeous face of yours?

                            GILLIS
                 In a deep freeze.

                            ARTIE
                 I almost reported you to the Bureau
                 of Missing Persons.
                      (To the company)
                 Fans, you all know Joe Gillis, the
                 well-known screen writer, opium
                 smuggler and Black Dahlia suspect.

          Gillis greets some of the kids by name as he and
          Artie push their way into the room.

                            ARTIE
                 Give me your coat.

                            GILLIS
                 Let it ride for a while.

                            ARTIE
                 You're going to stay, aren't you?

                            GILLIS
                 That was the general idea.

                            ARTIE
                 Come on.

          Artie starts peeling the coat off Gillis.  Its
          texture takes his breath away.

                            ARTIE
                 What is this - mink?

          He has taken the coat.  He looks at Gillis standing
          there in tails.

                            ARTIE
                 Judas E. Priest, who did you
                 borrow that from? Adolphe
                 Menjou?

                            GILLIS
                 Close, but no cigar.

          Gillis stands embarrassed While Artie rolls up the
          Vicuna coat and tucks it above the books on a book-
          shelf.

                            ARTIE
                 Say, you're not really smuggling
                 opium these days,  are you?

                            GILLIS
                 Where's the bar?

          The two make their way toward the punch bowl.  It's
          a little like running the gauntlet for Gillis.  There
          are whistles and 'stares of astonishlnent at his tails.
          When they reach the punch bowl, Artie picks up a
          half-filled glass and fills it.

                            GILLIS
                 Good party.

                            ARTIE
                 The greatest.  They call me the Elsa
                 Maxwell of the assistant directors.
                      (To some guests who are
                       dipping their empty cups
                       into the punch bowl)
                 Hey, easy on the punch bowl.  Budget
                 only calls for three drinks per extra.
                 Fake the rest.

                            GILLIS
                 Listen, Artie, can I stick around
                 here for a while?


                            ARTIE
                 Sure, this'll go on all night.

                            GILLIS
                 I mean, could you put me up for
                 a couple of weeks?

                            ARTIE
                 It just so happens we have a
                 vacancy on the couch.

                            GILLIS
                 I'll take it.

                            ARTIE
                 I'll have the bell-hop take care
                 of your luggage.

          He runs his finger across the decollete back of a
          girl standing in a group next them.

                            ARTIE
                 Just register here.

          The girl turns around.  She is Betty Schaefer.

                            BETTY
                 Hello, Mr.  Gillis.

                            ARTIE
                 You know each other?

          Gillis looks at her a little puzzled.

                            BETTY
                 Let me help you.  Betty Schaeter,
                 Sheldrake's office.

                            GILLIS
                 Sure.  Bases Loaded.

                            ARTIE
                 Wait a minute.  This is the woman
                 I love.  What's going on? Who
                 was loaded?

                            GILLIS
                 Don't worry.  She's just a fan
                 for my literary output.

                            BETTY
                      (to Artie)
                 Hurt feelings department.

                            GILLIS
                 About that luggage.  Where's
                 the phone?

                            ARTIE
                 Over by the Rainbow Room.

          Gillis squeezes his way through groups of people
          to the telephone, which is next to an open door
          leading to the bathroom.  The phone is busy.  A
          girl sits listening to it, giggling wildly.  Another
          girl beside her is laughing too.  They are apparently
          sharing a conversation with some man on the other end
          of the wire.  The telephone passes from hand to hand.
          Gillis watches impatiently, then

                            GILLIS
                 When youlre through with that
                 thing, can I have it?

          The girl just nods, going on with her chattering.
          Gillis stands waiting, and Betty Schaefer comes up
          with his glass.

                            BETTY
                 You forgot this.

                            GILLIS
                 Thanks.

                            BETTY
                 I've been hoping to run into you.

                            GILLIS
                 What for? To recover that knife
                 you stuck in my back?

                            BETTY
                 I felt a little guilty, so I got
                 out some of your old stories.

                            GILLIS
                 Why, you sweet kid.

                            BETTY
                 There's one called....Window...
                 something with a window.

                            GILLIS
                 Dark Windows.  How did you
                 like it?

                            BETTY
                 I didn't.

                            GILLIS
                 Thank you.

                            BETTY
                 Except for about six pages.
                 You've got a flashback there ...

          There is too much racket for her.

                            BETTY
                 Is there someplace we can talk?

                            GILLIS
                 How about the Rainbow Room?

          They squeeze their way towards the bathroom, past
          Artie.

                            ARTIE
                 I said you could have my couch.
                 I didn't say you could have my
                 girl.

                            BETTY
                 This is shop talk.

          She and Gillis go through the open door into


  C-20    ARTIE'S BATHROOM

          It's a little less noisy, although there are some
          guests there, chatting and having fun.  Betty and
          Gillis sit down on the edge of the tub.

                            GILLIS
                 Now if I got you correctly, there
                 was a short stretch of my fiction
                 you found worthy of notice.

                            BETTY
                 The flashback in the courtroom,
                 when she tells about being a
                 school teacher.

                            GILLIS
                 I had a teacher like that once.

                            BETTY
                 Maybe that's why it's good.
                 It's true, it's moving.  Now
                 why don't you use that character...

                            GILLIS
                 Who wants true? Who wants moving?

                            BETTY
                 Drop that attitude.  Here's some-
                 thing really worth while.

                            GILLIS
                 Want me to start right now?
                 Maybe there's some paper around.

                            BETTY
                 I'm serious.  I've got a few ideas.

                            GILLIS
                 I've got some ideas myself.  One
                 of them being this is New Year's
                 Eve.  How about living it up a
                 little?

                            BETTY
                 As for instance?

                            GILLIS
                 Well....

                            BETTY
                 We could make some paper boats
                 and have a regatta.  Or should
                 we just turn on the shower?

                            GILLIS
                 How about capturing the kitchen
                 and barricading the door?

                            BETTY
                 Are you hungry?

                            GILLIS
                 Hungry? After twelve years in
                 the Burmese jungle.  I am starving,
                 Lady Agatha -- starving for a
                 white shoulder --

                            BETTY
                 Phillip, you're mad!

          One of the girls who was on the phone comes to
          the door.

                               GIRL
                 You can have the phone now.

                               GILLIS
                      (Paying no attention)
                 Thirsting for the coolness of
                 your lips -

                               BETTY
                 No, Phillip, no.  We must be
                 strong.  You're still wearing
                 the uniform of the Coldstream
                 Guards!  Furthermore, you can
                 have the phone now.

                               GILLIS
                 O.K.
                      (He gets up, starts
                       out, turns)
                 I find I'm terribly afraid of
                 losing you.

                               BETTY
                 You won't.
                      (She takes the glass
                       out of his hand)
                 I'll get us a refill of
                 this awful stuff.

                               GILLIS
                 You'll be waiting for me?

                               BETTY
                 With a wildly beating heart.

                               GILLIS
                 Life can be beautiful!

          He leaves.


  C-21    THE MAIN ROOM

          Gillis squeezes himself through some guests to
          the phone.  He has to stand in a cramped position,
          holding the instrument close to him as he dials
          a number.

                               GILLIS
                 Max?  This is Mr. Gillis.
                 I want you to do me a favor.

  C-22    NORMA DESMOND HOUSE

          Max is at the phone, in the lower hall.

                            MAX
                 I am sorry, Mr.  Gillis.
                 I cannot talk now.


  C-23    GILLIS ON THE PHONE

                            GILLIS
                 Yes you can.  I want you to get
                 my old suitcase and I want you
                 to throw in my old clothes --
                 the ones I came with, and my
                 typewriter.  I'll have somebody
                 pick them up.


  C-24    MAX AT THE PHONE

                            MAX
                 I have no time to talk.  The
                 doctor is here.


  C-25    GILLIS ON THE PHONE

                            GILLIS
                 What doctor? What's going on?


  C-26    MAX AT THE PHONE

                            MAX
                 She got the razor from your
                 room.  She cut her wrists.

          Max hangs up, moves toward the staircase.


  C-27    GILLIS AT THE PHONE

                            GILLIS
                 Max ! Max !

          He hangs up the dead receiver, stands numb   with
          shock.  Betty elbows her way up to him, carrying
          the two punch glasses filled again.

                            BETTY
                 I just got the recipe: take
                 two packages of cough drops,
                 dissolve in one gallon of
                 lukewarm grape juice --

          Gillis looks up at her.  Without a word he pushes
          her aside so that she spills the drink.  He makes
          his way through the guests to the Vicuna coat, pulls
          it from the shelf, some books tumbling with it, and
          rushes towards the door and out.  Betty stands look-
          ing after him, completely bewildered.

          DISSOLVE TO:


  C-28    EXT. DESMOND HOUSE - (NIGHT, RAIN)

          The doctor's car is parked in the driveway.  A taxi
          pulls up.  Gillis, in his Vicuna coat now, jumps
          out, throws a couple of dollars to the rdriver and
          runs toward the house.


  C-28a    DOORWAY, NORMA DESMOND HOUSE>

          Max is opening the door to let out the doctor, a
          professional looking man carrying a black bag.
          Gillis runs into the SHOT.

                            GILLIS
                 How is she?

                            MAX
                 She is upstairs.

          Gillis starts to push past Max.  Max grabs his arm.

                            MAX
                 Be careful.  Do not race up the
                 stairs.  The musicians must not
                 know what has happened.

          Gillis goes into the house.


  C-29    ENRANCE HALL AND STAIRCASE

          Gillis crosses the hall and starts up the stairs.


  C-3O    INT. NORMA DESMOND'S ROOM

          Only one alabaster lamp lights the big, cold room.
          On the bed lies Norma in her evening dress.  She is
          white as a sheet.  Her wrists are bandaged.  Her eyes
          are wide open, staring at the ceiling.  One of her
          shoes has halt slipped off her foot.  The other is
          on.  Gillis opens the door and stands there tor a
          second.  Then he slowly moves to the toot of the bed.
          He takes the shoes from her feet and puts them on
          the floor.

                            NORMA
                 Go away.

                            GILLIS
                 What kind of a silly thing was
                 that to do?

                            NORMA
                 To fall in love with you -- that
                 was the idiotic thing.

                            GILLIS
                 It sure would have made attractive
                 headlines: Great Star Kills Her-
                 self for Unknown Writer.

                            NORMA
                 Great stars have great pride.

          She puts one bandaged forearm over her eyes, sobbing.
          Gillis walks slowly over to the mantelpiece, stands
          there for awhile.

                            NORMA
                 Go away.  Go to that girl of yours.

                            GILLIS
                 Look, I was making that up because
                 I thought the whole thing was a
                 mistake.  I didn't want to hurt you.
                 You've been good to me.  You're the
                 only person in this stinking town
                 that has been good to me.

                            NORMA
                 Why don't you just say thank you
                 and go, go, go --

                            GILLIS
                 Not until you promise to act like
                 a sensible human being.

                            NORMA
                 I'll do it again, I'll do it again,
                 I'll do it again!

          Gillis stands looking at her helplessly.


  C-31    LIVING ROOM, THE DESMOND HOUSE

          The candles burned down, the orchestra playing to
          the emptiness.  The orchestra leader looks at his
          watch, rises, silences the orchestra, then starts
          them in on Auld Lang Syne.

                                                                       


  C-32    INT. NORMA'S ROOM

          Gillis still stands.  Norma lies on the bed, arms
          over her eyes, sobbing.

                            GILLIS
                 Happy New Year.

          Norma continues to sob.  Gillis goes to the bed,
          puts his arms on her shoulders and turns her around.

                            GILLIS
                 Happy New Year.

          Norma looks at him, tears in her eyes.  Slowly she
          enfolds him in her bandaged arms.

                            NORMA
                 Happy New Year.  darling.

          She kisses him.

          DISSOLVE





                  END OF SEQUENCE "C"




                         SEQUENCE "D"

          DISSOLVE IN ON:

  D-1     INT. HALLWAY, NORMA              GILLIS' VOICE
          DESMOND'S HOUSE (DAY)       Around the middle of May
                                      some incidents happened
          The telephone is heard      which I think I should tell
          ringing.  Max comes from    you about.
          living room to the phone,
          picks it up.

                            MAX
                 Hello ... Yes?


  D-1a    BETTY SCHAEFER, AT THE PHONE ON HER DESK IN THE
          READERS' DEPARTMENT

                            BETTY
                 Is this Crestview 5-1733? ... I'm
                 sorry to bother you again, but I've
                 confirmed the number.  I must speak
                 to Mr. Gillis.

  D-1b    MAX, AT THE PHONE

                            MAX
                 He is not here.

  D-1c    BETTY ON THE PHONE

                            BETTY
                 Where can I reach him?  Maybe
                 somebody else in the house could
                 tell me.

  D-1d    MAX ON THE PHONE

                            MAX
                 Nobody here can give you any
                 information.  You will please
                 not call again.

          He hangs up.  From off comes:

                            NORMA'S VOICE
                 Who was it, Max?  What is it?


  D-1e    PATIO, NORMA'S HOUSE

          It is a sunny day.  The garden is in somewhat better
          shape.  The old house looks less unkept.  The pool
          is filled.  Norma sits on a wicker chaise longue, her
          face shielded by an enormous straw hat, her eyes by
          dark glasses.  Gillis, in bathing trunks, is on a
          rubber mattress in the pool.  Max comes to the
          entrance door.

                            MAX
                 Nothing, Madame.  Somebody Inqu-
                 iring about a stray dog.  We must
                 have a number very similar to the
                 pound.

          He starts to turn back.

                            NORMA
                 Wait a minute.  I want you to get
                 out the car.  You're going to
                 take the script over to Paramount
                 and deliver it to Mr. De Mille in
                 person.

                            MAX
                 Yes, Madame.

          He goes into the house.

                            GILLIS
                      (climbing out
                       of the water)
                 You're really going to send it
                 to De Mille?

                            NORMA
                 This is the right day.

          She indicates a typewritten letter she is holding.

                            NORMA (Cont'd)
                 The chart from my astrologer.
                 She read deMille's horoscope.
                 She read mine.

                            GILLIS
                 Did she read the script?

                            NORMA
                 DeMille is Leo.  I'm Scorpio.
                 Mars has been transmitting
                 Jupiter for weeks.  Today is
                 the day of greatest conjuction.
                 Now turn around.  Let me dry
                 you.

          She puts the towel around his sholders and starts
          drying him.

                            GILLIS
                 I hope you realize, Norma,
                 that scripts don't sell on
                 astrologers' charts.

                            NORMA
                 I'm not just selling the script.
                 I'm selling me.  DeMille always
                 said I was his greatest star.

                            GILLIS
                  When did he say it, Norma?

                            NORMA
                 So he said it quite a few years
                 ago.  So what?  I never looked
                 better in my life.  Do you know
                 why?  Because I've never been as
                 happy in my life.

          She kisses him.

          DISSOLVE TO:


  D-2     INT. THE ISOTTA, DRIVING
          DOWN SUNSET ABOUT 8:30
          IN THE EVENING                    GILLIS' VOICE
                                      A few evenings later we
          Max is driving.  In the     were going to the house of
          tonneau sit Norma, in a     one of the waxworks for
          chinchilla wrap, and        some bridge.  She'd taught
          Gillis in his tuxedo.       me how to play bridge by
          Norma is rummaging          then, just as she'd taught
          through her evening         me some fancy tango steps,
          bag.  She finds a           and what wine to drink
          cigarette case, opens       with what fish.
          it.  It is empty.

                            NORMA
                 That idiot.  He forgot to fill
                 my cigarette case.

                            GILLIS
                      (Proffering his case)
                 Have one of mine.

                            NORMA
                 They're awful.  They make me cough.

                            GILLIS
                      (Pushing open the glass
                       partition, to Max)
                 Pull up at the drugstore, will
                 you, Max.
                      (To Norma)
                 I'll get you some.

                            NORMA
                 You're a darling.

          She takes a dollar bill from her purse and gives it
          to him.


  D-3     EXT. SCHWAB'S DRUGSTORE
          The car drives up and Gillis hurries into the store.


  D-4     INT. SCHWAB'S DRUGSTORE
          Business is still rather lively.  There are about a
          dozen shoppers, and the soda counter is half filled.
          Gillis enters and steps to the tobacco counter.

                            GILLIS
                      (To the salesgirl)
                 Give me a pack of those Turkish
                 cigarettes -- Melachrinos.

          The girl opens the glass showcase to locate the fancy
          brand.  From OFF comes

                            ARTIE'S VOICE
                 Stick 'em up, Gillis, or I'll
                 let you have it!

          Gillis turns.


  D-5     AT THE SODA FOUNTAIN

          Artie Green and Betty Schaefer sit having a sandwich
          and a milk shake.  With his forefinger and a sound
          effect, Artie riddles Gillis' body.  Gillis walks
          INTO THE SHOT.

                            GILLIS
                 Hello, Artie.  Good evening,
                 Miss Schaefer.

                            BETTY
                      (Excitedly)
                 You don't know how glad I am
                 to see youl

                            ARTIE
                 Walking out on the mob.  What's
                 the big idea?

                            GILLIS
                 I'm sorry about New Year's. Would
                 you believe me if I said I had
                 to be with a sick friend?

                            ARTIE
                 Someone in the formal set, no
                 doubt, with a ten-carat kidney
                 stone.

                            BETTY
                 Stop it, Artie, will you?
                      (To Gillis)
                 Where have you been keeping your-
                 self? I've got the most wonderful
                 news for you.

                            GILLIS
                 I haven't been keeping myself at
                 all.  Not lately.

                            BETTY
                 I called your agent.  I called the
                 Screen Writers Guild.  Finally your
                 old apartment gave me some Crestview
                 number.  There was always somebody
                 with an accent growling at me.  You
                 were not there.  You were not to be
                 spoken to.  They never heard of you.

                            GILLIS
                 Is that so? What's the wonderful
                 news?

                            BETTY
                 Sheldrake likes that angle about
                 the teacher.

                            GILLIS
                 What teacher?

                            BETTY
                 Dark Windows.  I got him all
                 hopped up about it.

                            GILLIS
                 You did?

                            BETTY
                 He thinks it could be made into
                 something.

                            GILLIS
                 Into what? A lampshade?

                            BETTY
                 Into something for Barbara Stan-
                 wyck.  They have a commitment with
                 Barbara Stanwyck.

                            ARTIE
                 Unless you'd rather have Sarah
                 Bernhardt.

                            BETTY
                 This is on the level.  Sheldrake
                 really went for it.

                            GILLIS
                 O.K.  Where's the cash?

                            BETTY
                 Where's the story? I bluffed it
                 out with a few notions of my own.
                 It's really just a springboard.
                 It needs work.

                            GILLIS
                 I was afraid of that.

                               BETTY
                    I've got twenty pages of notes.
                    I've got a pretty good character
                    for the man.

                               ARTIE
                    Could you write in plenty of back-
                    ground action, so they'll need an
                    extra assistant director?

                               BETTY
                    Shut up, Artie.
                         (To Gillis)
                    Now if we could sit down for two
                    weeks and get a story.

                               GILLIS
                    Sorry, Miss Schaefer, but I've
                    given up writing on spec.

                               BETTY
                    I tell you this is half sold.

                               GILLIS
                    As a matter of fact.  I've given
                    up writing altogether.

          Max has appeared in the door.

                              MAX
                   Mr. Gillis, if you please.

                              GILLIS
                   Right with you.

          Max leaves.

                              ARTIE
                   The accent! I've got it: this guy
                   is in the pay of a foreign government.
                   Get those studs.  Get those cuff-links.

                              GILLIS
                   I've got to run along.  Thanks any-
                   way for your interest in my career.

                              BETTY
                   It's not your career -- it's mine.
                   I kind of hoped to get in on this
                   deal.  I don't want to be a reader
                   all my life.  I want to write.

                              GILLIS
                   Sorry if I crossed you up.

                              BETTY
                   You sure have.

                              GILLIS
                   So long.

          He leaves.

                            ARTIE
                      (Patting her hand)
                 Babe, it's like that producer says:
                 In life, you've got to take the
                 bitter with the sour.


  D-6     THE ISOTTA, PARKED OUTSIDE

          Gillis comes from Schwab's, gets into the car.

          Max takes off.

                            NORMA
                 What on earth, darling? It took
                 you hours.

                            GILLIS
                 I ran into some people I knew.

                            NORMA
                 Where are my cigarettes?

                            GILLIS
                 Where are your...?

          He realizes he's forgotten them, takes the dollar
          and hands it back to her.

                            GILLIS
                 Norma, you're smoking too much.

          DISSOLVE TO:


  D-7     LIVING ROOM, NORMA
          DESMOND'S HOUSE 
          (EARLY AFTERNOON)

          Start on a tiny                       GILLIS' VOICE
          parasol being             Whenever she suspected I
          twirled...Norma           was getting bored, she
          peeks out from one        would put on a live show
          side of the parasol,      for me: the Norma Desmond
          a bandanna tied           Follies.  Her first number
          around her head with      was always the Mack Sennett
          a rabbit's-ear bow.       Bathing Beauty.
          She bats her eyes,
          winks roguishly.

          THE CAMERA PULLS BACK to reveal that Norma's black
          pyjama trousers are rolled up over her knees and her
          black stockings rolled down below them.  The whole
          effect approximates a Mack Sennett bathing costume
          pretty effectively.  She points at a leather pour.

                            NORMA
                 This is a rock.

          She climbs on it, pantomimes timidity, an attempted
          dive, then jumps off.

          Gillis lolls on a couch, watching the performance,
          very bored.

                            NORMA
                 I can still see myself in the
                 line: Bebe Daniels, Marie Prevost,
                 Mabel Normand ... Mabel was always
                 stepping on my feet ...What's the
                 matter with you, darling?  Why are
                 you so glum?

                            GILLIS
                      (Lighting a cigarette
                       with a match)
                 Nothing is the matter.  I'm having
                 a great time.  Show me some more.

                            NORMA
                      (Taking the match)
                 All right.  Give me this.  I need
                 it for a moustache.  Now close
                 your eyes.

          She runs out of the                 GILLIS' VOICE
          picture.  Gillis has      Something was the matter,
          closed his eyes.          all right.  I was thinking
          THE CAMERA MOVES to       about that girl of Artie's,
          his face.                 that Miss Schaefer.  She
                                    was so like all us writers
                                    when we first hit Holly-
                                    wood -- itching with am-
                                    bition, panting to get
                                    your names up there:
                                    Screenplay by.  Original
                                    Story by.  Hmph!  Audiences
                                    don't know somebody sits
                                    down and writes a picture.
                                    They think the actors make
                                    it up as they go along.

                            NORMA'S VOICE
                 Open your eyes.

          Gillis opens his eyes.

          Norma has equipped herselr with a derby hat, a cane,
          and blacked in a small moustache.  She goes into a
          little Chaplin routine.  While she is doing it, the
          telephone rings.  After a moment Max comes to the
          living room door.

                            MAX
                 Madame is wanted on the telephone.

                            NORMA
                 You know better than to interrupt me.

                            MAX
                 Paramount is calling.

                            NORMA
                 Who?

                            MAX
                 Paramount studios.

                            NORMA
                      (To Gillis)
                 Now, now do you belive me? I told
                 you deMille would jump at it.

                            MAX
                 It is not Mr. deMille in person.
                 It is someone by the name or Gordon
                 Cole.  He says it's very important.

                            NORMA
                 Certainly it's important.  It's
                 important enough for Mr. deMille
                 to call me personally.  The idea
                 of having an assistant call me!

                            MAX
                 I myself was surprised at Mr. de
                 Mille's manners.

                            NORMA
                 Say that I'm busy, and hang up.

                            MAX
                 Very good, Madam.

          He bows and exits.

                            NORMA
                 How do you like that? We've
                 made twelve pictures together.
                 His greatest successes.

                            GILLIS
                 Maybe deMille is shooting.

                            NORMA
                 I know that trick! He wants to
                 belittle me.  He's trying to get
                 my price down.  I've waited
                 twenty years for this call.  Now
                 Mr. deMille can wait till I'm
                 good and ready.

          DISSOLVE TO:


  D-8     NORMA, IN THE TONNEAU
          OF THE LIMOUSINE,
          DRIVING DOWN MELROSE

          She is in full makeup,             GILLIS' VOICE
          with a veil, a daring     About three days later she
          hat, a suit so stunning   was good and ready.  In-
          only she would venture    credible as it may seem,
          to wear it.  THE CAMERA   there had been some more
          PULLS BACK.  Beside her   of those calls from
          sits Gillis in the glen   Paramount.  So she put on
          plaid suit.  Max is       about half a pound of
          driving.                  makeup, fixed it up with
                                    a veil, and set forth to
                                    see deMille in person.

          Norma is examining her face in the mirror of her
          vanity.  Max, while driving, sees her in the rear
          view mirror.

                            MAX
                 If you will pardon me, Madame.
                 The shadow over the left eye
                 is not quite balanced.

                            NORMA
                 Thank you, Max.

          With a handkerchief, she corrects it.


  D-9     MAIN GATE, EXT. PARAMOUNT STUDIO

          The car drives down Bronson and stops smack in front
          of the iron gate.  A young policeman is talking to
          an extra; an old policeman sits reading a newspaper.
          Max sounds the horn impatiently.

                            YOUNG POLICEMAN
                 Hold that noise!

                            MAX
                 To see Mr. de Mille.  Open the gate.

                            YOUNG POLICEMAN
                  Mr. deMille is shooting.  You
                  got an appointment?

                            MAX
                  No appointment is necessary.  I
                  am bringing Norma Desmond.

                            YOUNG POLICEMAN
                  Norma Who?

          Norma has rolled down the window on her side.  She
          calls to the old policeman.

                            NORMA
                  Jonesy! Come here, Jonesy!

                            OLD POLICEMAN
                  Yeah?
                       (He comes forward slowly)
                  Why, if it isn't Miss Desmond!
                  How have you been, Miss Desmond?

                            NORMA
                  Fine, Jonesy.  Now open that gate.

                            OLD POLICEMAN
                  Sure, Miss Desmond.
                       (To the young policeman}
                  Come on, Mac.

                            YOUNG POLICEMAN
                  They can't drive on the lot
                  without a pass.

                            OLD POLICEMAN
                  Miss Desmond can.  Come on.

          They fling open the gate.

                            OLD POLICEMAN
                       (As the car drives through)
                  Stage eighteen, Miss Desmond.

                            NORMA
                  Thank you, Jonesy.  And teach
                  your friend some manners.  Tell
                  him without me he wouldn't have
                  any job, because without me there
                  wouldn't be any Paramount Studio.
                       (To Max)
                  Go on.

          They drive through the gates.  The old policeman
          goes to wall phone beside the gate, dials a number.

                            OLD POLICEMAN
                      (Into phone)
                 Norma Desmond coming in to
                 see Mr. deMille.

  D-10    STAGE 18

          A scene from SAMPSON AND DELILAH is being rehearsed
          in the background.  The usual turbulent activity
          surrounds it: extras.  makeup men, grips,
          assistants, etc., etc.  In the dim foreground a
          stage hand is answering a stand telephone.  He
          puts down the phone and moves (CAMERA WITH HIM)
          to a second assistant.

                            STAGE HAND
                 Norma Desmond is coming to see
                 Mr. deMille.

          The second assistant walks (CAMERA WITH HIM)
          to the first assistant.

                            2nd ASSISTANT
                 Norma Desmond coming in to
                 see Mr. deMille.

          The first assistant (CAMERA WITH HIM) hurries
          to the set.  Sitting with his back toward us
          is C.B. himself.  He is rehearsing a scene with
          Hedy Lamarr.

                            1ST ASSISTANT
                 Norma Desmond is coming in to
                 see you, Mr. deMille.

          C. B. turns his head.

                            DEMILLE
                 Norma Desmond?

                            lst ASSISTANT
                 She must be a million years old.

                            DEMILLE
                 I hate to think where that puts
                 me.  I could be her father.

                            1ST ASSISTANT
                 I'm terribly sorry, Mr. de Mille.

          By this time de Mille is on his feet.

                            DEMILLE
                 It must be about that appalling
                 script of hers.  What can I say
                 to her? What can I say?

                            1ST ASSISTANT
                 I can tell her you're all tied
                 up in the projection room.  I
                 can give her the brush ...

                            DEMILLE
                 Listen, thirty million fans
                 have given her the brush.
                 Isn't that enough?

                            1ST ASSISTANT
                 I didn't mean to --

                            DEMILLE
                 Of course you didn't.  You didn't
                 know Norma Desmond as a plucky
                 little girl of seventeen, with
                 more courage and wit and heart
                 than ever came together in one
                 youngster.

                            1ST ASSISTANT
                 I hear she was a terror to
                 work with.

                            DEMILLE
                 She got to be.  A dozen press
                 agents working overtime can
                 do terrible things to the human
                 spirit.
                      (to the set)
                 Hold everything.

          He leaves, accompanied by his entourage.

  D-11    EXT. STAGE 18

          Norma's limousine drives up.  Max dismounts
          and opens the door.

                            NORMA
                      (taking Gillis's hand)
                 Don't you want to come along,
                 darling?

                            GILLIS
                 I don't think so.  It's your
                 script.  It's your show.
                 Good luck.

                            NORMA
                 Thank you, darling.

          She presses his hand against her cheek, descends
          from the car and walks toward -

  D-12    THE DOOR OF STAGE 18

          The first assistant is holding it open.  In the door-
          way stands Mr. deMille.  Seeing Norma, he stretches
          out his arms.

                              DE MILLE
                   Hello, young fellow.

                              NORMA
                   Hello, Mr. deMille.

          She has reached him.  They embrace.

                              NORMA
                   Last time I saw you was someplace
                   very gay.  I remember waving to you.
                   I was dancing on a table.

                             DE MILLE
                  Lots of people were.  Lindbergh had
                  just landed in Paris.  Come on in.

          He leads her into


  D-13    STAGE 18

          During the ensuing dialogue, Mr. deMille walks Norma
          towards the set.

                              DE MILLE
                   Norma, I want to apologize for
                   not calling you.

                              NORMA
                   You'd better.  I'm very angry.

                              DE MILLE
                   I'm pretty busy, as you can see...

                              NORMA
                   That's no excuse.  You read the
                   script, didn't you?

                              DE MILLE
                   Yes, I did.

                              NORMA
                   Then you could have picked up the
                   phone yourself instead of leaving
                   it to one of your assistants.

                              DE MILLE
                   What assistant?

                             NORMA
                  Don't play innocent.  Somebody
                  named Gordon Cole.

                             DE MILLE
                  Gordon Cole?

                             NORMA
                  And if you hadn't been pretty
                  darned interested in that script,
                  he wouldn't have tried to get
                  me on the phone ten times.

                             DE MILLE
                  Gordon Cole... Look, Norma,
                  I'm in the middle of a rehearsal.
                       (Indicating his
                        own chair)
                  Make yourself comfortable.

          He walks onto the set, accompanied by his assistants.

                             DE MILLE
                       (Sotto voce, to his
                        first assistant)
                  Get me Gordon Cole on the phone.

          Meanwhile, Norma starts to sit, sees the name
          MISS LAMARR on the chair and with a look of
          distaste changes and sits on the one marked
          C.B. DE MILLE.    From somewhere comes

                             A VOICE
                  Hey, Miss Desmond! Miss Desmond!

          She looks around her.

                           VOICE
                Up here!

          Norma looks up at the scaffolding.

          On the scaffold stands one of the electricians,
          next to his light.

                           ELECTRICIAN
                It's met It's Hog-eyel

          Norma waves at him.

                           NORMA
                Hello.

          Hog-eye points his light at her.

                           HOG-EYE
                Let's get a look at you.

          The beam of the lamp moves toward Norma.  It hits
          her.  She sits bathed in light.  A couple of old
          costume extras recognize her.

                           EXTRAS
                Say, it's Norma! Norma Desmond!

          They rush over and start wringing her hand.  Into
          the shot comes a middle-aged hairdresser.

                           HAIRDRESSER
                Hello, Miss Desmond.  It's Bessie.

          Some elderly electricians and stagehands move in.


  D-14    ANOTHER PART OF THE STAGE

          The first assistant brings the portable phone to
          deMille.  DeMille lifts the receiver.

                           DE MILLE
                Hello.


  D-15    GORDON COLE'S OFFICE IN THE PROPERTY DEPARTMENT,
          GORDON COLE ON THE PHONE.

                           COLE
                Prop Department.  Gordon Cole speaking.

  D-16    DE MILLE ON THE PHONE

                            DE MILLE
                 Cole, this is C. B. deMille.  Have
                 you been calling Norma Desmond?...
                 What's it about?


  D-17    GORDON COLE, ON THE PHONE

                            COLE
                 It's that car of hers -- an old
                 Isotta-Fraschini.  Her chauffeur
                 drove it on the lot the other day.
                 It looks just right for the Crosby
                 picture.  We want to rent it for a
                 couple of weeks.


  D-18    DE MILLE ON THE PHONE

                            DE MILLE
                      (Troubled)
                 Oh.  Well, thank you.

          He hangs up, walks back towards Norma.  (CAMERA
          WITH HIM).

          Norma stills sits in the shaft of light, surrounded
          by about a dozen people who have come up to pay court.
          DeMille gestures up to Hog-eye and the light shifts
          away.  The people about Norma disperse slowly with
          various ad-libs.

                            DE MILLE
                 Well, Norma ...
                      (He sits down next to her)
                 I got hold of Gordon Cole.

          Norma hasn't heard a word.

                            NORMA
                 Did you see them? Did you see
                 how they came?

                            DE MILLE
                 You know, crazy things happen in
                 this business.  I hope you haven't
                 lost your sense of humor ...

          Suddenly he realizes that she is crying.  She takes
          the handkerchief from his pocket and puts it over her
          eyes.

                            DEMILLE
                 What's the matter, Norma?

                            NORMA
                 Nothing.  I just didn't realize
                 what it would be like to come back
                 to the old studio.  I had no idea
                 how I'd missed it.

                            DEMILLE
                 We've missed you too, dear.

                            NORMA
                 We'll be working again, won't we, Chief?
                 We'll make our greatest picture.

                            DEMILLE
                 That's what I want to talk to you about.

                            NORMA
                 It's a good script, isn't it?

                            DEMILLE
                 It's got a lot of good things.  Of
                 course, it would be an expensive picture...

                            NORMA
                 I don't care about the money.
                 I just want to work again.  You
                 don't know what it means to know
                 that you want me.

                            DEMILLE
                 Nothing would thrill me more --
                 if it were possible.

                            NORMA
                 But remember, darling -- I don't
                 work before ten in the morning,
                 and never after 4:30 in the afternoon.

          The first assistant comes up.

                            1ST ASSISTANT
                 We're ready with the shot, Mr. deMille.

                            DEMILLE
                 You'll pardon me, Norma? Why
                 don't you just sit and watch?
                      (He steps onto the set)
                 O.K.  Here we go.

                            1ST ASSISTANT
                 Roll 'em.

                            DEMILLE
                 Action!
          The scene starts.

  D-19    THE ISOTTA, PARKED OUTSIDE STAGE 18

          Max stands talking to Gillis, who is seated in the
          car.

                            MAX
                      (Pointing to the row
                       of offices in the
                       building opposite)
                 You see those offices there, Mr.
                 Gillis? They used to be her
                 dressing room, The whole row.

                            GILLIS
                 That didn't leave much for Wallace
                 Reid.

                            MAX
                 He had a great big bungalow on
                 wheels.  I had the upstairs.  See
                 where it says 'Readers' Department'?
                 I remember my walls were covered
                 with black patent leather...

          The words "Readers' Department" have registered on
          Gillis' mind.  He gets out of the car.

                            GILLIS
                 I'll be with you in a minute.

          He crosses the street towards the green staircase
          leading to the second floor.

          Meanwhile, two prop men walking down the street
          come into the SHOT.

                            1ST PROP MAN
                 Hey, that's the comic car Cole
                 was talking about!
                       (To Max)
                 Do you mind if we look inside?

                            MAX
                 Go away.  Go away.


  D-2O    CUBICLE IN THE READERS' DEPARTMENT

          Behind the desk sits Betty, typing the synopsis of
          a novel, a half-eaten apple marking her place.  The
          door behind her opens and Gillis enters.

                            GILLIS
                 Just so you don't think I'm a
                 complete swine -- if there's
                 anything in Dark Windows you
                 can use, take it.  It's all
                 yours.

                            BETTY
                 Well, for heaven's sake!

          She moves the book and the apple aside and points at
          the free space on the desk.

                            BETTY
                 Have a chair.

          Gillis sits on the desk.

                            GILLIS
                 I mean it.  It's no good to me
                 anyway.  Help yourself.

                            BETTY
                 Why should you do that?

                            GILLIS
                 If you get a hundred thousand for
                 it, you buy me a box of chocolate
                 creams.  If you get an Oscar, I
                 get the left foot.

                            BETTY
                 You know, I'd take you up on that
                 in a minute.  I'm just not good
                 enough to do it all by myself.

                            GILLIS
                 What about all those ideas you had?

                            BETTY
                 See if they make sense.  To begin
                 with, I think you should throw out
                 all that psychological stuff --
                 exploring a killer's sick mind.

                            GILLIS
                 Psychopaths sell like hotcakes.

                            BETTY
                 This story is about teachers --
                 their threadbare lives, their
                 struggles.  Here are people doing
                 the most important job in the
                 world, and they have to wprry
                 about getting enough money to
                 re-sole their shoes.  To me it
                 can be as exciting as any chase,
                 any gunplay.

                            GILLIS
                 Check.

                            BETTY
                 Now I see her teaching day classes
                 while he teaches night school.  The
                 first time they meet ...

          From below comes the SOUND of the Isotta's horn.

                            GILLIS
                 Look, if you don't mind, I haven't
                 got time to listen to the whole
                 plot ...

                            BETTY
                 I'll make it short.

                            GILLIS
                 Sorry.  It's your baby now.

                            BETTY
                 I'm not good enough to write it
                 alone.  We'll have to do it together.

                            GILLIS
                 I'm all tied up.  I can't.

                            BETTY
                 Couldn't we work in the evenings?
                 Six o'clock in the morning? This
                 next month I'm completely at your
                 disposal.  Artie is out of town.

                            GILLIS
                 What has Artie to do with it.

                            BETTY
                 We're engaged.

                            GILLIS
                 Good for you.  You've got yourself
                 the best guy in town.

                            BETTY
                 I think so.  They're on location
                 in Arizona, shooting a Western.
                 I'm free every evening, every week-
                 end.  If you want, we could work at
                 your place.

                            GILLIS
                 It's just impossible.

                            BETTY
                 Nobody can be that busy.

          There is another honk: from down below.

                            GILLIS
                 Look, Betty, It can't be done.
                 It's out.

                            BETTY
                 You're tough, all right.

                            GILLIS
                 You're on your own.  Stop being
                 chicken-hearted and write that story.

                            BETTY
                 Honest to goodness, I hate you.

                            GILLIS
                      (Turning 1n the open door)
                 And don't make it too dreary.  How
                 about this for a situation: she
                 teaches daytimes.  He teaches at
                 night.  Right?  They don't even know
                 each other, but they share the same
                 room.  It's cheaper that way.  As a
                 matter of fact, they sleep in the
                 same bed -- in shifts, of oourse.

                            BETTY
                 Are you kidding? Because I think
                 it's good.

                            GILLIS
                 So do I.

                            BETTY
                 Came  on back.  Let me show you
                 where it fits in.

          She reaches in a drawer for her notes on Dark
          Windows.

                            GILLIS
                       (At the door)
                 So long.

          Betty picks up the apple and is about to throw it
          after him.

                            BETTY
                 Oh, you --

                            GILLIS
                 And here's a title: AN APPLE FOR
                 THE TEACHER.

          He ducks out quiokly, slamming the door behind him.
          Betty looks after him, then angrlly hurls the
          apple into the wastebasket.


  D-21    STAIRCASE OUTSIDE READERS' DEPARTMENT

          Max is rush1ng up the stairs toward the descending
          Gillis.

                            GILLIS
                 What's the matter, Max?

                            MAX
                 I just found out why all those tele-
                 phone calls.  It is not Miss Desmond
                 they want.  It is the car they want
                 to rent.

                            GILLIS
                 What?

          Max has seen something off.

                            MAX
                 Ssh...

          With his head he indicates


  D-22    ENTRANCE TO STAGE 18

          The first assistant has opened the door.  DeMille
          is showing Norma out.

                            DE MILLE
                 Goodbye, young fellow.  We'll see
                 what we can do.

                            NORMA
                      (embracing him)
                 I'm not worried.  Everything will
                 be fine.  The old team together.
                 Nothing can stop us.

          She turns and walks out of the shot.  De Mille
          stands for a second watching her, then turns to
          his assistant.

                            DE MILLE
                 Get Gordon Cole.  Tell him to forget
                 about her car.  He can find another
                 old car.  I'll buy him five old cars,
                 if necessary.

                            1ST ASSISTANT
                 Yes, Mr. De Mille.

          They turn back into Stage 18.

  D-23    THE ISOTTA

          Gillis seated in the rear.  Max is helping Norma
          in and putting the robe over her.

                           GILLIS
                      (Apprehensively)
                How did it go?

                           NORMA
                It couldn't have gone better.
                It's practically set.  Of course,
                he has to finish this picture
                first, but mine will be his next.

          There is an exchange of looks between Max and Gillis.

                           GILLIS
                He must be quite a guy.

                           NORMA
                He'a a shrewd old fox.  He can
                smell box office.  Only I'm going
                to outfox him a litt1e.  This isn't
                going to be C. B. deMille's Salome.
                It's going to be Norma Desmond's
                Salome, a Norma Desmond Production,
                starring Norma Desmond...Home, Max.

                           MAX
                Yes, Miss Desmond.

          As he says the words, he and Gillis exchange a glance
          in the rear view mirror.

          SLOW DISSOLVE:

                           END OF SEQUENCE "D"



                         SEQUENCE "E"

          DISSOLVE IN ON:

  E-1     CLOSEUP OF NORMA'S FACE
                                              GILLIS' VOICE
          Absolutely no makeup.  A       After that, an army of
          hand with a strong small       beauty experts invaded
          flashlight comes into the      her house on Sunset
          picture.  The beam of the      Boulevard.  She went
          flashlight travels over the    through a merciless
          face, exploring it merci-      series of treatments,
          lessly.  While the light is    massages, sweat cabinets,
          still on it, two pairs of      mud baths, ice compres-
          creamed hands come into the    ses, electric devices.
          shot and start to massage it.  She lived on vegetable
                                         juices and went to bed
          DISSOLVE TO:                   at nine.  She was deter-
                                         mined to be ready --
                                         ready for those cameras
  E-2     A SHORT MONTAGE of various     that would never turn.
          beauty treatments applied
          to Norma.

          DISSOLVE TO:

  E-3     NORMA BEFORE THE MIRROR
          IN HER BEDROOM

          It is nine o'clock in the evening.  She is in night
          gown and negligee and has put triangular patches on
          the saddle of her nose and at the outer corner of
          each eye.  She is rubbing lotion on her hands.

          She gets up and crosses to the door of Gillis' room
          and opens it a crack.

                             NORMA
                   Joe darling, are you there?

  E-4     GILLIS' ROOM

          It is dark except for a lamp over the chaise longue.
          Gillis lies on it, fully clothed, reading a book.

                             GILLIS
                   Yes, Norma.

          Through the slit in the door there is a suggestion
          of Norma.

                             NORMA
                  Don't turn around.  Keep your
                  eyes on the book.

                             GILLIS
                  Yes, Norma.

          Norma pushes the door open and comes in.

                             NORMA
                  I just came to say good night.
                  I don't want you to see me --
                  I'm not very attractive.

                             GILLIS
                  Good night.

                             NORMA
                  I've lost half a pound since
                  Tuesday.

                             GILLIS
                  Good.

                             NORMA
                  I was a little worried about the
                  line of my throat.  This woman
                  has done wonders with it.

                             GILLIS
                  Good.

                             NORMA
                  You'd better get to bed yourself.

                             GILLIS
                  I think I'll read a little.

                             NORMA
                  You went out last night, didn't
                  you, Joe?

                             GILLIS
                  Why do you say that?

                             NORMA
                  I just happen to know it.  I had
                  a nightmare and I screamed for
                  you.  You weren't here.  Where
                  were you?

                             GILLIS
                  I went for a walk.

                             NORMA
                  No you didn't.  You took the
                  car.

                             GILLIS
                  All right, I drove to the beach.
                  Norma, you don't want me to feel
                  I'm locked up in this house?

                             NORMA
                  Of course not, Joe.  It's just
                  that I don't want to be left alone.
                  Not now, while I'm under this
                  terrible strain.  My nerves are
                  being torn apart.  All I ask is
                  for you to be a little patient and a
                  little kind.

                             GILLIS
                  I haven't done anything, Norma.

                             NORMA
                  Of course you haven't.  I wouldn't
                  let you.

          She bends and kisses the top of his head.

                             NORMA
                  Good night, my darling.

          She goes into her room, shutting the door behind her.

          Gillis puts his book down and looks at her door.


  E-5     THE DOOR TO NORMA'S ROOM

          The light can be seen through the gouged-out
          keyhole.  It goes out.

          DISSOLVE TO:

  E-6     UPPER LANDING STAIRWAY
          AND HALL BELOW (NIGHT)                GILLIS' VOICE

          Gillis, with his coat on by    Yes, I was playing hooky
          now, comes cautiously to
          the upper railing and looks    every evening along in
          down into the lighted hall
          below.                         there.  It made me think I

          Max is just extinguishing      of when I was twelve and
          the lights.  Max exits in,
          the direction of the liv-      used to sneak out on the
          ing room.
                                         folks to see a gangster
          After a moment Gillis starts
          silently down the stairs.      picture.  This time it

                                         wasn't to see a picture,
  E-7     LIVING ROOM
                                         it was to try and write
          (Lighted only by the last
          flicker of a fire on the       one.  That story of mine
          hearth).  Max is putting a
          fire screen in front of        Betty Schaerer had dug
          the fire.  He hears some
          steps and the creak or the     up kept going through
          main door being opened.
          He looks out and sees          my head like a dozen

                                         locomotives...
  E-7a    THE MAIN DOOR

          Gillis, in the moonlit porch,
          is closing the main door
          behind him.


  E-8     LIVING ROOM

          Max looks after Gillis, his
          face enigmatic as ever.

          DISSOLVE TO:


  E-9     GARAGE AND DRIVEWAY
          (MOONLIGHT)

          Gillis comes into the shot,
          gets into the Isotta, drives
          it out or the garage and down
          the driveway to Sunset, as
          quietly as possible.

          DISSOLVE TO:

  E-10    READERS' OFFICE BUILDING
          PARAMOUNT (NIGHT)

          Start on a LONG SHOT.  THE             GILLIS' VOICE
          BOOM MOVES FORWARD to the only     So we'd started
          two lights.  They are the door     working on it, the
          and window of Betty Schaefer's     two of us.  Nights,
          cubicle.  Betty sits at the        when the studio was
          desk, typing.  Gillis, his         deserted, up in her
          coat off, his shirt-sleeves        little cubby-hole
          rolled up, j.s pacing the floor,   of an office.
          discussing the construction of
          a sentence.  The discussion at
          a stalemate, Betty suggests
          some coffee.  Gillis agrees.
          From the electric plate on the
          shelf beside her, Betty takes
          a glass coffee machine.  Gillis
          seats himself in her chair
          and starts typing.

          Betty opens the door and comes out on the balcony to
          fill the coffee machine from the water cooler stand-
          ing beside the door.

                             BETTY
                   I got the funniest letter from
                   Artie.  It's rained every day
                   since they got to Arizona.  They
                   re-wrote the whole picture for
                   rain and shot half of it.  Now
                   the sun is out.  Nobody knows
                   when they'll get back.

          She moves back into the room.

                             GILLIS
                   Good.

                             BETTY
                   What's good about it?  I miss
                   him something fierce.

                             GILLIS
                   I mean this is good dialogue
                   along in here.  It'll play.

                             BETTY
                   It will?

                             GILLIS
                   Sure.  Especially with lots
                   of music underneath, drowning
                   it out.

                             BETTY
                   Don't you sometimes hate yourself?

                             GILLIS
                   Constantly.  No, in all serious-
                   ness, it's really good.  It's
                   fun writing again.  I'm happy
                   here, honest I am.

          He resumes typing.  Betty puts the water on.  She
          picks up a pack of cigarettes on the desk, finds it's
          empty and throws it away, sees Gillis' open gold
          cigarette case and lighter on the table by the couch.
          Betty reaches for a cigarette.  The inscription en-
          graved inside the case catches her eye.  It reads:

                            MAD ABOUT THE BOY --

                                      Norma


                             BETTY
                   Who's Norma?

                             GILLIS
                   Who's who?

                             BETTY
                   I'm sorry.  I don't usually
                   read private cigarette cases.

                             GILLIS
                   Oh, that.  It's from a friend
                   of mine.  A middle-aged lady,
                   very foolish and very generous.

                             BETTY
                   I'll say.  This is solid gold.

                             GILLIS
                   I gave her some advice on an
                   idiotic script.

                             BETTY
                   It's that old familiar story,
                   you help a timid little soul
                   across a crowded street.  She
                   turns out to be a multimillionaire
                   and leaves you all her money.

                             GILLIS
                   That's the trouble with you
                   readers.  You know all the plots.
                   Now suppose you proof-read page
                   ten while the water boils.

          DISSILVE TO:

  E-11    AN EMPTY STREET AT THE                GILLIS' VOICE
          PARAMOUNT STUDIO (NIGHT)      Sometimes when we got
                                        stuck we'd make a
          Gillis and Betty are walking  litte tour of the
          down it.  From a stage where  drowsing lot, not talk-
          they are erecting a new set   ing much, just wandering
          comes a great shaft of light. down alleys between the
          They stop at an apple-vending sound stages, or through
          machine in the foreground,buy the sets they were get-
          themselves a couple of apples ting ready for the next
          and walk on.                  day's shooting.  As a
                                        matter of fact, it was
          DISSOLVE TO:                  on one of those walks
                                        when she first told me
                                        about her nose ...

  E-12    PARAMOUNT'S NEW YORK STREET (NIGHT)

          Betty and Gillis are walking down it, THE CAMERA
          AHEAD OF THEM.

                             BETTY
                   Look at this street.  All card-
                   board, all hollow, all phoney.
                   All done with mirrors.  I like
                   it better than any street in the
                   world.  Maybe because I used to
                   play here when I was a kid.

                             GILLIS
                   What were you -- a child actress?

                             BETTY
                   I was born just two blocks from
                   this studio.  Right on Lemon Grove
                   Avenue.  Father was head elec-
                   trician here till he died.  Mother
                   still works in Wardrobe.

                             GILLIS
                   Second generation, huh?

                             BETTY
                   Third.  Grandma did stunt work
                   for Pearl White.  I come from a
                   picture family.  Naturally they
                   took it for granted I was to become
                   a great star.  So I had ten years of
                   dramatic lessons, diction, dancing.
                   Then the studio made a test.  Well,
                   they didn't like my nose -- it slanted
                   this way a little.  I went to a doctor
                   and had it fixed.  They made more
                   tests, and they were crazy about my
                   nose -- only they didn't like my acting.

                             GILLIS
                      (Examining her nose
                       by the flame of his
                       lighter)
                   Nice job.

                             BETTY
                   Should be.  It cost three hundred
                   dollars.

                             GILLIS
                   Saddest thing I ever heard.

                             BETTY
                   Not at all.  It taught me a little
                   sense.  I got me a job in the mail
                   room, worked up to the Stenographic.
                   Now I'm a reader...

                             GILLIS
                   Come clean, Betty.  At night you
                   weep for those lost closeups, those
                   gala openings...

                             BETTY
                   Not once.  What's wrong with being
                   on the other side of the cameras?
                   It's really more fun.

                             GILLIS
                   Three cheers for Betty Schaefer!
                   I will now kiss that nose of yours.

                             BETTY
                   If you please.

          Gillis kisses her nose.  As he stands there, his
          face close to hers -

                             GILLIS
                   May I say you smell real special.

                             BETTY
                   It must be my new shampoo.

                             GILLIS
                   That's no shampoo.  It'smore like
                   a pile of freehly laundred hand-
                   kerchiefs, like a brand new auto-
                   mobile.  How old are you anyway?

                             BETTY
                   Twenty-two.

                            GILLIS
                 That's it -- there's nothing like
                 being twenty-two.  Now may I suggest
                 that if we're ever to finish this
                 story you keep at least two feet
                 away from me ...  Now back to the
                 typewriter.

          They start walking in the direction of the office.

          DISSOLVE TO:


  E-13    THE GARAGE

          Gillis gets out.  From the seat next him he takes a
          batch of script, folds it and puts it in his pocket.
          He suddenly becomes aware that he is watched, turns.
          Max stands in the moonlight, evidently waiting for
          him.

                            GILLIS
                 What is it, Max? Want to wash
                 the car, or are you doing a little
                 spying in your off hours?

                            MAX
                 You must be very careful as you
                 cross the patio.  Madame may be
                 watching.

                            GILLIS
                 How about my going up the kitchen
                 stairs and undressing in the dark.
                 Will that do it?

                            MAX
                 I'm not inquiring where Mr.
                 Gillis goes every night...

                            GILLIS
                 Why don't you? I'm writing a
                 script and I'm dying to finish
                 it, no matter what.

                            MAX
                 It's just that I'm very worried
                 about Madame.

                            GILLIS
                 Sure you are.  And we're not help-
                 ing her any, feeding her lies and
                 more lies.  Getting herself ready
                 for a pioture ...  What happens when
                 she finds out?

                            MAX
                 She never will.  That is my job.
                 It has been for a long time.  You
                 must understand I discovered her
                 when she was eighteen.  I made her
                 a star.  I cannot let her be destroyed.

                            GILLIS
                 You made her a star?

                            MAX
                 I directed all her early pictures.
                 There were three young directors
                 who showed promise in those days:
                 D.W. Grirrith, C.B. deMille, and
                 Max von Mayerling.

                            GILLIS
                 And she's turned you into a
                 servant.

                            MAX
                 It was I who asked to come back,
                 humiliating as it may seem.  I
                 could have gone on witn my career,
                 only I found everything unendur-
                 able arter she divorced me.  You
                 see, I was her rirst husband.

          DISSOLVE TO:


  E-14    NORMA DESMOND'S BEDROOM

          One lamp lit.  Norma, in a white negligee, with the
          patches on her face, is pacing up and down -- a
          small, tormented, pitiable woman.  Finally she opens
          the door to:


  E-15    GILLIS' ROOM (MOONLIGHT)

          Gillis lies in bed asleep, Norma in the doorway.

                            NORMA
                 You're here, Joe ... When did
                 you come home? Where were you?
                 Is it a woman? I know it's a
                 woman ... Who is she? Oh Joe,
                 why can't I ask you? I must know,
                 I must!

          Her eyes fall on Gillis' coat, which hangs over a
          chair.  In a pocket is part of the script.  Norma
          takes it out, looks at it.  She can't see it in the
          moonlight.  She hurries with it into:


  E-16    NORMA'S BEDROOM

          Carrying the script Norma goes to the lamp and looks
          at it.  On the first page she sees something which
          confirms all her suspicionso It reads:

                       UNTITLED LOVE STORY
                              by
                        Joseph C.  Gilliss
                              and
                         Betty Schaefer

          DISSOLVE:


  E-17    BETTY'S CUBICLE (NIGHT)

          Betty is typing.  Gillis sits on the couch, proof-
          reading a scene.  Betty stops typing and Gillis
          becomes aware of her eyes fixed on him.

                            GILLIS
                 Hey, what's the matter...
                 Betty, wake up!
                     (He whistles and
                      catches her attention)
                 Why are you staring at me like that?

                            BETTY
                 Was I?  I'm sorry.

                            GILLIS
                 What's wrong with you tonight?
                 What is it, Betty?

                            BETTY
                 Something came up.  I don't want
                 to talk about it.

                            GILLIS
                 Why not?

                            BETTY
                 I just don't.

                            GILLIS
                 What is it you've heard.  Come
                 on, let's have it.

          Betty gets up.

                            GILLIS
                 Is it about me?

          Betty doesn't answer, walks out on


  E-18    THE BALCONY

          She leans against a post, crying.  Gillis comes out
          after her.

                            GILLIS
                 Betty, there's no use running
                 out on it.  Let's face it, what-
                 ever it is.

                            BETTY
                 It's nothing.  I got a telegram
                 from Artie.

                            GILLIS
                 From Artie.  What's wrong?

                            BETTY
                 He wants me to come on to Arizona.
                 He says it only oosts two dollars
                 to get married there.  It would
                 kind of save us a honeymoon.

                            GILLIS
                 Why don't you? We can finish the
                 script by Thursday.

          Betty stands crying silently.

                            GILLIS
                 Stop crying.  You're getting
                 married.  That's what you've
                 always wanted.

                            BETTY
                 I don't want it now.

                             GILLIS
                   Why not? Don't you love Artie?

                             BETTY
                   Of course I love him.  I always
                   will.  I'm just not in love
                   with him any more.

                             GILLIS
                   What happened?

                             BETTY
                   You did.

          There is a moment's pause before he takes her in
          his arms.  THE CAMERA MOVES AWAY.

          DISSOLVE TO:


  E-19    HALL AND STAIRCASE                  GILLIS' VOICE
          DESMOND HOME- (NIGHT)        It wasn' t until I got
                                       back to that peculiar
          Gillis enters, closes        prison of mine that I
          the door as quietly as       started facing the facts.
          he can, and goes up          There it was -- Betty
          the stairs.                  Schaefer's future right
                                       in the palm of my hand.
  E-20    GILLIS' ROOM                 Betty Schaefer engaged
                                       to Artie Green, as nice
          He enters and turns on the   a guy as ever lived.
          light.  He sinks down on     And she was in love with
          the chaise longue,thinking.  me.  Me ! She was a fool
          His eyes wander to the       not to sense that there
          door of Norma's room.        was something phony in
          Through the gouged-out key-  my set-up.  And I was a
          hole he sees the light.      heel not to have told
                                       her.  But you just can't
                                       say those things to
                                       somebody you're crazy
                                       about.  Maybe I'd never
                                       have to.  Maybe I could
                                       get away with it, get
                                       away from Norma.  Maybe
                                       I could wipe the whole
                                       nasty mess right out of
                                       my life...
          From Norma's room comes the sound of a telephone
          being dialled.  Gillis enters the shot and stands
          listening.

                             NORMA'S VOICE
                   Is this Gladstone 0858?

  E-21    NORMA'S BEDROOM
          Norma lies in bed, dialing a number.  She has the
          beauty patches at the corners of her eyes and over
          her nose.

                            NORMA
                 Can I speak to Miss Betty
                 Schaefer? She must be home by
                 now.


  E-22    A BEDROOM IN BETTY'S FLAT

          Connie, a girl of Betty's age with whom she shares
          the flat, is on the phone.  Betty, in a dressing-
          gown, comes from the bathroom, toothbrush in hand.

                            CONNIE
                      (Hand over mouthpiece)
                 Betty, here's that weird-sounding
                 woman again.

                            BETTY
                 What is this anyway?
                      (Taking the phone)
                 This is Betty Schaefer.


  E-23    NORMA AT IHE PHONE

                            NORMA
                 Miss Schaefer, you must forgive
                 me for calling you so late, but
                 I really feel it's my duty.  It's
                 about Mr. Gillis.  You do know Mr.
                 Gillis? ...Exactly how much do you
                 know about him? Do you know where
                 he lives? Do you know how he lives?
                 Do you know what he lives on?


  E-24    BETTY AT THE PHONE

                            BETTY
                 Who are you? What do you want?
                 What business is it of yours
                 anyway?


  E-25    NORMA ON THE PHONE

                            NORMA
                 Miss Schaefer, I'm trying to do
                 you a favor.  I'm trying to spare
                 you a great deal of misery.  Of
                 course you may be too young to even
                 suspect there are men of his sort...

                            NORMA (Cont'd)
                 I don't know what he's told you, but
                 he does not live with relatives, nor
                 with friends, in the usual sense of
                 the word.  Ask him ... Ask him again.

          During the latter part of her call, the doors from
          Gillis' room have been pushed open and Gillis has
          walked towards her.  Suddenly Norma senses his pre-
          sence and turns around.  The telephone freezes in her
          hand.  She tries to hang it up.  Very calmly Gillis
          takes the receiver from her hand.

                            GILLIS
                      (Into phone)
                 That's right, Betty, ask me again.
                 This is Joe.


  E-26    BETTY ON THE PHONE

                            BETTY
                 Joe, where are you? What's this
                 all about?


  E-27    GILLIS ON THE PHONE

          Norma beside him.

                            GILLIS
                 Or maybe it would be a better
                 idea if you came over and saw it
                 for yourself.  The address is 10086
                  .

          He hangs up.  Norma looks up at him as he crosses to
          the other end of the room and stands staring at her.
          The silence becomes unbearable.

                            NORMA
                 Don't hate me, Joe.  I did it because
                 I need you.  I need you as I never
                 needed you.  Look at me.  Look at my
                 hands, look at my face, look under my
                 eyes.  How can I go back to work if I'm
                 wasting away under this torment? You
                 don't know what I've been through these
                 last weeks.  I got myself a revolver.
                 You don't believe me, but I did, I did!
                 I stood in front of that mirror, only
                 I couldn't make myself.  It wouldn't be

                            NORMA (Cont'd)
                 fair to all those people who are
                 waiting to see me back on the
                 screen.  I can't disappoint them.
                 Only, if I'm to work, I need
                 sleep, I need quiet, I need you!
                 Don't just stand there hating
                 me! Shout at me, strike me!
                 But don't hate me, Joe.  Don't
                 you hear me, Joe?

                            GILLIS
                 Yes, I hear you.  And I wish you'd
                 keep still so I can hear the doorbell
                 when she rings it.


  E-28    BETTY AND CONNIE, DRIVING IN A SMALL COUPE DOWN
            (NIGHT)


  E-29    INT. COUPE

          Connie is looking at the house numbers.

                            CONNIE
                 Here's ten thousand seventy-nine,
                 Betty.  It must be over there.

          Betty turns the car into the driveway of Norma's
          place, stops at the entrance steps.  Betty gets out.

                            CONNIE
                 Betty, let me come along with
                 you.  Please.

                            BETTY
                 No, I'll be all right.

          She shuts the door of the car and goes up the steps.


  E-30    NORMA'S BEDROOM

          Norma lies on the bed.  Gillis sits in a far corner
          of the room, motionless.

                            NORMA
                      (In a whimpering monotone)
                 I love you, Joe.  I love you, Joe.
                 I love you, Joe.  I love you, Joe.

          There is the sound of footsteps below and the ringing
          of a doorbell.  Gillis rises.

                            NORMA
                 What are you going to do, Joe?

          Without a word, he leaves the room.  Norma raises
          herself on the bed, reaching for a black negligee
          lying at the foot of it.  As she does so, she dis-
          lodges her pillow a little, revealing a revolver
          hidden beneath it.


  E-31    DOWNSTAIRS HALL, THE DESMOND HOUSE (DARK)

          Max crosses the hall, putting on his alpaca jacket.
          He turns on the lights.  Outside stands Betty.
          From the staircase comes -

                            GILLIS' VOICE
                 It's all right, Max.  I'll take it.

                            MAX
                 Yes, sir.

          He stands back as Gillis opens the door.

                            GILLIS
                 Hello, Betty.

                            BETTY
                      (On the threshold)
                 I don't know why I'm so scared,
                 Joe.  Is it something awful?

                            GILLIS
                 Come on in, Betty,

          Betty enters.  As he leads her into the living room,
          Gillis puts his arm around her shoulders.

                            GILLIS
                 Ever been in one of these old
                 Hollywood palazzos? That's from
                 when they were making eighteen thou-
                 sand a week, and no taxes.  Careful
                 of these tiles, they're slippery.
                 Valentino used to dance here.

                            BETTY
                 This is where you live?

                            GILLIS
                 You bet.

                            BETTY
                 Whose house is it?

          They have reached


  E-32    THE LIVING ROOM

          Gillis leads Betty in.

                            GILLIS
                 Hers.

                            BETTY
                 Whose?

                            GILLIS
                 Just look around.  There's a lot
                 of her spread about.  If you don't
                 remember the face, you must have
                 heard the name of Norma Desmond.

                            BETTY
                 That was Norma Desmond on the phone?

                            GILLIS
                 Want something to drink?  There's
                 always champagne on ice, and plenty
                 of caviar.

                            BETTY
                 Why did she call me?

                            GILLIS
                 Jealous.  Ever see so much junk?
                 She had the ceiling brought from
                 Portugal.  Look at this.

          He pulls the rope, showing the projection screen
          under the picture.

                            GILLIS
                 Her own movie theatre.

                            BETTY
                 I didn't come here to see a house.
                 What about Norma Desmond?

                            GILLIS
                 I'm trying to tell you.  This is
                 an enormous place.  Eight master
                 bedrooms.  A sunken tub in every
                 bathroom.  There's a bowling alley
                 in the cellar.  It's lonely here,
                 so she got herself a companion.
                 A very simple set-up: An older
                 woman who is well-to-do.  A younger
                 man who is not doing too well ...
                 Can you figure it out yourself?

                            BETTY
                 No.

                            GILLIS
                 All right.  I'll give you a few
                 more clues.

                            BETTY
                 No, no! I haven't heard any of
                 this.  I never got those telephone
                 calls.  I've never been in this
                 house ... Get your things together.
                 Let's get out of here.

                            GILLIS
                 All my things? All the eighteen
                 suits, all the custom-made shoes and
                 the eighteen dozen shirts, and the
                 cuff-links and the platinum key-
                 chains, and the cigarette cases?

                            BETTY
                 Come on, Joe.

                            GILLIS
                 Come on where? Back to a one-room
                 apartment that I can't pay for?
                 Back to a story that may sell and
                 very possibly will not?

                            BETTY
                 If you love me, Joe.

                            GILLIS
                 Look, sweetie -- be practical.
                 l've got a good thing here.
                 A long-term contract with no options.
                 I like it that way.  Maybe it's not
                 very admirable.  Well, you and Artie
                 can be admirable.

                            BETTY
                 Joe, I can't look at you any more.

                            GILLIS
                 Nobody asked you to.

          Betty turns from him, to hide the fact that she is
          crying.

                            GILLIS
                 All right, baby.  This way out.

          He leads her in the direction of the door.

  E-33    UPPER LANDING, DESMOND HOUSE

          Sitting crouched behind the balustrade is Norma,
          peering down into


  E-34    THE LOWER HALL

          Betty and Gillis have reached the entrance door.
          Gillis opens it.

                            GILLIS
                 Good luck to you, Betty.  You can
                 finish that story on the way to
                 Arizona.  When you and Artie get
                 back, if the two of you ever feel
                 like a swim, here's the pool ...

          He switches on the light.


  E-35    THE PATIO

          The lights go on in the pool, which shines brilliant-
          ly in the dark garden.


  E-36    BETTY

          She doesn't even look.  Her eyes filled with tears,
          she runs down the entrance porch toward her car.


  E-37    THE ENTRANCE HALL

          Gillis looks after her, closes the door.  From the
          upper landing comes the sound of soft sobbing.  He
          looks up.


  E-38    NORMA, ON THE UPPER LANDING

          Gillis ascends the stairs.

                            NORMA
                 Thank you, Joe -- thank you, Joe.

          She tries to take his hand to kiss it as he passes.
          He doesn't stop.  Norma catches his coat.  Gillis
          moves right on into his room.  Norma lies on the
          floor looking after him.  She crawls toward a con-
          sole, pulls herself up by it, starts towards Gillis'
          door, passes a mirror, realizes how she looks, moves
          back to the mirror and takes the patches off her
          face and does a hasty job of removing the cream with
          her handkerchief, readjusts her expression to a poor
          travesty of a smile and goes to the door of Gillis'
          room.

                            NORMA
                 May I come in?  I've stopped cry-
                 ing.  I'm all right again.  Joe,
                 tell me you're not cross -- tell
                 me everything is just as it was,
                 Joe.

          She opens the door.


  E-39    GILLIS' ROOM

          In the foreground, open on the bed, is a half-packed
          suitcase, Gillis just putting some of his old shirts
          in.  Norma stands staring, speechless, for a second.
          Gillis moves out of the shot towards the closets.

                            NORMA
                 What are you doing, Joe?  What
                 are you doing?  You're not leaving
                 me?

                            GILLIS
                 Yes, I am, Norma.

                            NORMA
                 No, you're not.
                      (Calling)
                 Max! Max!

                            GILLIS
                 Max is a good idea.  He can help
                 with my luggage.
                      (He gestures in the
                       direction of the closet)
                 Thanks for letting me wear the
                 handsome wardrobe.  And thanks
                 for the use of all the trinkets.

          He takes the cigarette case and throws it on the
          chaise longue.  Then he throws the lighter, the
          wrist watch, the platinum key-chain and the tie clip.

                            GILLIS
                      (Indicating the bureau)
                 The rest of the jewelry is in the
                 top drawer.

                            NORMA
                 It's yours, Joe.  I gave it to
                 you.

                            GILLIS
                 And I'd take it in a second, Norma --
                 only it's a little too dressy for
                 sitting behind the copy desk in
                 Dayton, Ohio.

                            NORMA
                 These are nothing.  You can have
                 anything you want if you'll only
                 stay.  What is it you want --
                 money?

                            GILLIS
                 Norma, you'd be throwing it away.
                 I don't qualify for the job, not any
                 more.

                            NORMA
                 You can't do this!  Max!  Max!
                 ... I can't face life without you,
                 and I'm not afraid to die, you
                 know.

                            GILLIS
                 That's between you and yourself,
                 Norma.

                            NORMA
                 You think I made that up about
                 the gun...

          She rushes into her room.  Gillis closes the suitcase
          calmly, notices that he is still wearing some cuff-
          links Norma gave him, takes them off.

          Norma reappears in the door, carrying the revolver.

                            NORMA
                 See, you didn't believe me!..
                 Now I suppose you don't think I
                 have the courage!

                            GILLIS
                 Oh.  sure -- if it would make a
                 good scene.

                            NORMA
                 You don't care.  do you?  But
                 hundreds of thousands of people
                 will carel

                            GILLIS
                 Wake up, Norma.  You'd be killing
                 yourself to an empty house.  The
                 audience left twenty years ago.
                 Now face it.

          During the preceding.  Max has entered.  He stands
          listening, paralyzed.

                             NORMA
                  That's a lie!  They still want me!

                             GILLIS
                  No, they don't.

                             NORMA
                  What about the studio?
                  What about De Mille?

                             GILLIS
                  He was trying to spare your feelings.
                  The studio wanted to rent your car.

                             NORMA
                  Wanted what?

                             GILLIS
                  De Mille didn't have the heart
                  to tell you.  None of us has had
                  the heart.

                             NORMA
                  That's a lie!  They want me, they
                  want me!  I get letters every day!

                             GILLIS
                  You tell her, Max.  Come on, do
                  her that favor.  Tell her there
                  isn't going to be any picture --
                  there aren't any fan letters,
                  except the ones you write yourself.

                             NORMA
                  That isn't true! Max?

                             MAX
                  Madame is the greatest star of
                  them all...  I will take Mr.
                  Gillis' bags.

          He leaves.

                             NORMA
                  You heard him.  I'm a star!

                             GILLIS
                  Norma, grow up.  You're a woman
                  of fifty.  There's nothing tragic
                  about being fifty - not unless
                  you try to be twenty-five.

                             NORMA
                   I'm the greatest star of them
                   all.

                             GILLIS
                   Goodbye.  Norma.

                             NORMA
                   No one leaves a star.  That
                   makes one a star.

          Gillis picks up the typewriter and leaves.

                             NORMA
                   You're not leaving me!


  E-40    STAIRCASE

          Gillis descending with the typewriter.

                             NORMA'S VOICE
                   Joe! ...Joe!

          There is the SOUND OF A SHOT.  The glass of the front
          door is shattered.  Gillis at the door opens it and
          walks out, without looking back.

          Down the staircase rushes Norma.  a disordered wild-
          ness in the way she moves.

                             NORMA
                   You're not leaving me!

          She hurries after Gillis.


  E-41    PATIO (NIGHT)

          Dark except for lights from the house and the
          luminousness of the lit pool.

          Gillis is crossing the patio towards the garage.  He
          is carrying the typewriter.  He doesn't accelerate
          his step, although he has heard the shot.  Behind
          him Norma comes from the lighted house.

                             NORMA
                   You're not leaving me!

          She shoots twice in rapid succession.  Gillis drops
          the typewriter.  The shots have swung him around.  He
          is now facing Norma.  She shoots him.  This shot
          hits him in the belly.  He doubles up, instinctively
          backs away from her, plummets into the lit pool.

          Up the stone steps from the garage rushes Max.
          He sees the situation, hurries towards Norma, who
          stands exultant in the strange light from the pool.

                             NORMA
                   Stars are ageless, aren't they?

          DISSOLVE TO:


  E-42    THE PATIO

          Dawn is breaking.  At the edge of the pool
          stand policemen, detectives and police photographers.
          Motorcycle policemen are holding off the mob which
          is trying to storm the house.

          A lietuenant from the Homicide Bureau leaves the
          crowd around the pool and goes into


  E-43    THE LOWER HALL, DESMOND HOUSE

          It is filled with a pandemonium of police officers,
          newspaper people, etc.  who are kept from the upper
          floor by two policemen at the head of the stairs.
          The lieutenant from the Homicide Bureau goes
          through the crowd to the telephone at the foot of
          the stairs, picks up the phone and dials.

                             LIEUTENANT
                   Coroner's office? ... I want to
                   speak to the Coroner ... Who's
                   on this phone?


  E-44    THE WHITE TELEPHONE IN NORMA'S BEDROOM

          Standing talking into it is Hedda Hopper.

                             MISS HOPPER
                   I am! Now get off, this is more
                   important ... Times City Desk?
                   Hedda Hopper speaking.  I'm talking
                   from the bedroom of Norma Desmond.
                   Don't bother with a rewrite man, take
                   this direct.  Ready? -- As day breaks
                   over the murder house, Norma Desmond,
                   famed star of yesteryear, is in
                   a state of complete mental shock ...

          THE CAMERA PANS TO ANOTHER PART OF THE BEDROOM, where
          Norma sits at a mirror, staring at herself blankly.
          Firing questions at her are the Captain of the Holmby
          Hills Division and the L.A.  Homicide Squad.  Max
          stands by faithfully.

                            HOLMBY HILLS CAPTAIN
                  You do not deny having killed
                  this man, Miss Desmond?

                            HEAD OF HOMICIDE
                  Did you intend to kill him?
                  Just answer me that.

                            HOLMBY HILLS CAPTAIN
                  Was it a sudden quarrel?  Had there
                  been any trouble between you before?

                            HEAD OF HOMICIDE
                  If it was a quarrel, how come you
                  had the gun right there?

                            HOLMBY HILLS CAPTAIN
                  This guy -- where did you meet him
                  for the first time?  Where did he
                  come from? Who is he?

                            HEAD OF HOMICIDE
                  Did he have a wife?  Did he had a
                  girl friend?  Did you know them?

                            HOLMBY HILLS CAPTAIN
                  Had he been trying to blackmail you?

  E-45    PATIO - (DAWN)                     GILLIS' VOICE

          The body of Gillis   Well, this is where you came.
          being fished from    Here's that pool again,the one
          the pool, put on a   I always wanted.  They must have
          stretcher, covered   photographed me a hundred times.
          with an army blanket.Then they got a couple of prun-
          Two men from the     ing hooks from the garden and
          Coroner's office     fished me out ever so gently.
          carry it towards     Funny how gentle people get with
          the Coroner's        you once you're dead.  They
          hearse, CAMERA       beached me, like a harpooned
          PANNING with them.   baby whale, and started to check
                               the damage, just for the record
                               ... By this time the whole joint
                               was jumping -- cops,reporters,
                               neighbors, passersby -- as much
                               hoopdedoo as we get in Los
                               Angeles when they open a Super
                               Market.  Even the newsreel guys
                               came roaring in.  Here was an
                               item everybody could have some
                               fun with, the heartless so-and-
                               so's.  What would they do to her?
                               Even if she got away with it in
                               court- crime of passion - tempo-
                               rary insanity - those headlines
                               would kill her: Forgotten Star
                               a Slayer--Aging Actress--
                               Yesterday's Glamour Queen...

  E-46    NORMA'S BEDROOM

          The interrogators are still firing questions at Norma
          who sits lifeless, staring at herself.  Max watches.

                            HEAD OF HOMICIDE
                 Did the deceased ever threaten you?
                 Were you in fear of bodily injury?

                            HOLMBY HILLS CAPTAIN
                 Did you hate him?  Had you ever thought
                 of doing something like this before?

                            HEAD OF HOMICIDE
                 Was theft involved?  Did you catch
                 him trying to steal something, or
                 find he had stolen something?

          A police lieutenant has entered, goes to the Head of
          Homicide.

                            LIEUTENANT
                 The newsreel guys have arrived with
                 the cameras.

                            HEAD OF HOMICIDE
                 Tell them to go fly a kite.  This
                 is no time for cameras.

          A word has pierced the mists that surround Norma.

                            NORMA
                 Cameras? ...What is it, Max?

                            MAX
                 The cameras have arrived, Madame.

                            NORMA
                 They have?  Thank you, Max.  Tell
                 Mr. DeMille I will be on the set
                 at once.

          Max flashes a look at the Head of Homicide.

                            HEAD OF HOMICIDE
                 What is this?

                            MAX
                 Please ...

                            HOLMBY HILLS CAPTAIN
                      (sotto voce, to Head of Homicide)
                 Well, it's one way to get her down stairs.

                            HEAD OF HOMICIDE
                 Okay.  And let's have the car right
                 outside.

  7-1                       NORMA
                 You will pardon me, gentlemen.
                 I have to get ready for my scene.

          She takes a comb and runs it through her hair, then
          starts applying some wild makeup.


  E-47    STAIRCASE AND LOWER HALL

          Max makes his way down the stairs through the crowd
          of newsmen to the newsreel cameras, which are being
          set up in the hall below.

                            MAX
                  Is everything set up, gentlemen?
                  Are the lights ready?

          From the stairway comes a murnur.  They look up.

          Norma has emerged from the bedroom and comes to the
          head of the stairs.  There are golden spangles in
          her hair and in her hand she carries a golden scarf.

          The police clear a path for her to descend.  Press
          cameras flash at her every step.

          Max stands at the cameras.

                            MAX
                  Is everything set up, gentlemen?

                            CAMERAMAN
                  Just about.

          The portable lights flare up and illuminate the
          staircase.

                            MAX
                  Are the lights ready?

                            2ND CAMERA MAN
                  All set.

                            MAX
                  Quiet, everybody!  Lights!
                  Are you ready, Norma?

                            NORMA
                      (From the top of the
                       stairs)
                  What is the scene? Where am I?

                            MAX
                  This is the staircase of the palace.

                             NORMA
                 Oh, yes, yes.  They're below,
                 waiting for the Princess ...
                 I'm ready.

                             MAX
                 All right.
                      (To cameramen)
                 Camera!
                      (To Norma)
                 Action!

          Norma arranges the golden             GILLIS' VOICE
          scarf ebout her and proudy    So they were grinding
          starts to descend the stair-  after all, those cam-
          case.  The cameras grind.     eras.  Life, which can
          Everyone watches in awe.      be strangely merciful,
                                        had taken pity on Norma
                                        Desmond.  The dream she
                                        had clung to so des-
                                        perately had enfolded
                                        her...

          At the foot of the stairs Norma stops, moved.

                            NORMA
                 I can't go on with the scene.
                 I'm too happy.  Do you mind,
                 Mr. DeMille, if I say a few words?
                 Thank you.  I just want to tell
                 you how happy I am to be back in
                 the studio making a picture again.
                 You don't know how much I've missed
                 all of you.  And I promise you
                 I'll never desert you again, because
                 after "Salome" we'll make another
                 picture, and another and another.
                 You see, this is my life.  It always
                 will be.  There's nothing else -
                 just us and the cameras and those
                 wonderful people out there in the
                 dark...  All right, Mr. DeMille,
                 I'm ready for my closeup.

          FADE OUT.

                         THE END

TitleSunset Blvd. (1949)
TypeText
Size222.948 kB
Date Added2008-09-10
Views2608
CategoryMovie Scripts
Placement