Cat's Meow, The (2001) Movie Script

Stop pushing.
Stop pushing.
Please, calm down.
In November of 1924,
during a weekend yacht party
bound for San Diego,
a mysterious death occurred
within the Hollywood community.
However, there was no coverage
in the press, no police action,
and of the 1 4 passengers
on board,
only one was ever questioned
by authorities.
Little evidence exists now,
or existed at the time,
to support any version
of those weekend events.
History has been written
in whispers.
This is the whisper
told most often.
The yacht, you see,
belonged to
William Randolph Hearst.
Only in a place like this
do reporters and autograph hounds
have absolutely no scruples about
stampeding mourners at a funeral.
Welcome to Hollywood,
a land just off the coast
of the planet earth.
After we all leave,
the man in the box
will disappear.
Just his ashes
will remain.
After all, it's fire
that can hurt you, not ashes.'re listening to KFI.
And stay tuned
for our weekend music marathon,
with our own
KFI studio orchestra.
I fear this bizarre
yet fascinating town,
but I can't leave it.
You see, I'm never quite certain
if I'm visiting the zoo,
or if I'm one
of the animals in a cage.
Don't you dare!
I will not be seen arriving early.
Yes, ma'am.
I want to avoid
the solution to this riddle
but the man in the box
forces us to confront it.
All of us were there
that weekend.
I am not here.
The birthday boy is early.
He must be anxious.
My God, this thing
must be 200 feet.
- 220.
- He owns that?
And the ocean it's sitting in
and the sky above.
What are you doing?!
The old boy should give you the ship
as a birthday present, Tom.
We could sell it and
get the studio out of hock.
Don't be melodramatic,
George, no one's in hock.
We're not far away.
I don't know about this new strategy.
It's like I told you,
people's tastes have changed.
They want to read more modern stories.
Contemporary, adult.
Like the kind you read
in Hearst's magazines.
Will it be like this
all the way to San Diego and back?
Besides, he has a lot
of other assets to offer.
Yeah, cash.
I still don't think it's
the right time. Too obvious.
Relax, George.
No one's going to be obvious.
Business. Business.
Yes, take that bag.
Kono, a starving man
eats the wooden planks
of his log cabin.
- Is that funny?
- No, Mr. Chaplin. Not funny.
Don't hold back.
Tell me what you really think.
Huh? Hmm?
Don't tell me
Elinor Glyn has arrived on time?
Good God,
perhaps even early?
Oh... all right then.
Hello, you little bastard.
The "little" I object to.
I see your young passion flame
is not accompanying you.
Lita? She's not here?
I seem to have forgotten her.
Let's keep it
that way, shall we?
Oh my God!
...they cost him a fortune.
Mr. Chaplin, it is an honor,
and I mean a true honor
to meet you, sir.
Louella Parsons.
I write for Mr. Hearst's paper
the New York American.
I've been there a whole year.
Louella Parsons of the East,
meet Elinor Glyn of the West.
Elinor is the finest and naughtiest
writer in the entire world.
Oh, you don't have to tell me that.
I wish I could be introduced
as being "of the West."
Whatever makes you happy, dear.
I'll leave you two alone.
I have something-or-other
to attend to.
Mr. Chaplin, did you happen
to notice the rave review
I gave your last picture,
"A Woman of Paris"?
Yes, I did.
Thank you, that was most kind.
So deserved, so deserved.
It just stinks
that nobody went to see it.
At least you won't lose your shirt
on the next picture too.
I hear at least you have
the good sense to be in this one.
"The Gold Rush."
I hear that's just a hint
as to how much
this picture is costing you.
Oh, there's the birthday boy!
- Marion, sweetheart.
- Happy birthday.
Thank you. It's not until
tomorrow but I always love it
when a beautiful girl kisses me.
- Wow, look at you!
- Thanks.
We should try to find
a naval picture for you,
so we can get
this look on film.
- What do you think, George?
- Absolutely.
- Drinks?
- A natural comic too.
- Thanks.
- So, where's our captain?
He'll be down
in a minute.
...if I'm truly
going to make a difference,
is a daily column
with my name on top,
marking the place
where both the people
in the audience
and on the screen
can come together
to read the truth,
not just vicious gossip
and innuendo.
Keep after old WR,
I'm sure he'll come around.
I plan to, believe you me.
Take you, for example.
I want you to know that l, for one,
am so sorry about your difficulties
with your little co-star,
this little girl, Lita...
Oh! We're here.
- Allow me.
- Yes, it's... moving.
Oh! So, Mr. Chaplin,
if you ever need a sympathetic
person to confide in, I'm all ears.
After all, you'll need
someone on your side
when the shocking truth emerges.
Thank you very much, Ms. Parsons.
- Lolly.
- Hmm?
Lolly. All my close friends
call me Lolly.
- Lolly.
- Um-hmm.
So, Mr. Chaplin...
son of a bitch!
If you kids'll
excuse me again for a sec.
- Charlie, how are you?
- Safe, for the moment.
You know George Thomas,
my business partner?
- George.
- Charlie.
This is Miss Margaret Livingston,
George's guest and a delightful actress.
- Charmed, I'm sure.
- Me too.
- And Mrs. Ince?
- Couldn't make it,
one of our boys
isn't feeling well.
- Sorry to hear that.
- Yeah...
Say, that "Woman of Paris"
was a terrific picture.
Pretty big risk you took
by not being in it.
You're a risk taker, Charlie,
just like me.
Just when you got everyone laughing
at your Little Tramp character,
you make some
weepy melodrama without him.
You can't fault the man
for taking a gamble.
And anyhow, failure is
a character builder. Right, Charlie?
I don't know, Tom,
you tell me.
Thanks a lot. You introduce me
and then you hog him to yourself.
Little prick.
Really? I hear he's got
a pretty big one.
Actors running a studio.
It's like the goddamn serfs
running the palace.
He lost his shirt
in that last picture.
He's so over budget
on "The Gold Rush,"
his partners aren't even
returning his phone calls.
And his 1 6-year-old leading lady
collapsed on the set... pregnant.
- No kidding?
- Uh-huh.
They learn about the birds and bees
so much younger these days.
The buzz is that
Chaplin did the pollinating.
Oh, yeah?
Oh, Zoe. Can you get me
some more of these? Thank you.
Did you hear that hack
lecture me?
Hack? The man built
three movie studios all by himself.
Just 'cause he builds a paint shop
doesn't make him Van Gogh.
Why haven't...
Come here.
Why haven't you returned any
of my phone calls, you little shit?
'Cause I hate telephones.
Maybe I was calling to tell you
to stay away this weekend.
That would pretty much ensure
that I turn out, wouldn't it?
Willie's heard about us.
He's even had
private detectives around.
He only invited you
so he could watch us.
Nothing can happen
this weekend.
What are you doing
next weekend?
Jesus, Charlie! You didn't get me
into bed and you're not going to.
- Says who? You or Captain Willie?
- Says me.
I've got to go help
little Miss Lolly...
I mean it!
You start anything, I'll throw you
and your smirk overboard.
Do you believe
I would've stayed away?
But you should really believe
that I wanted you to.
I won't have anybody
walk on this boat
without being
introduced to everybody.
Lolly, this is everybody.
Everybody, this is Lolly.
- Hi.
- Louella Parsons.
This is one of Willie's
insightful movie reviewers.
Especially because of the wonderful
things she writes about me.
I wrote them before I knew
you were Mr. Hearst's...
You know, before you
and the boss... I knew that...
Gosh, this thing
is big, isn't it?
Yes, dear, but does he know
how to use it?
Well, that's that.
I'll get the captain
so we can shove off.
Did you hear that, Pops?
I'm coming up.
Very convincing.
- Oh, is anyone here yet?
- Everyone's here and you know it.
Are you gonna come down
from Mount Olympus or what?
There's no need
for sarcasm, Marion.
You're the one up here in
radio central spying on everyone.
- Those who have nothing to fear...
- Save the Bible quotes.
- It's not from the Bible.
- Whoever then.
Fine, go right ahead
and keep spying
'cause there's nothing to see.
There have been whispers.
Stop listening to whispers
and listen to me.
There's nothing going on
between me and Charlie.
I bought you something...
in New York.
- Willie...
It's beautiful.
But you already gave me
a butterfly brooch.
Oh no! That's diamonds and rubies.
This is diamonds and jade.
You don't have
one of these.
There are a lot of things
I don't have.
- If you love someone...
- You can't buy me all of them.
you try to get them
what they don't get themselves.
I love you so much.
Don't ever stop.
And I'll always be here,
don't you know that?
Thank you.
Every time you thank me...
what do I say?
"Shut up and keep me happy, Pops."
Ah, Dr. Goodman.
I didn't see you come on board.
You know me, Joe.
Elusive as ever.
- How's the chief today?
- A little edgy, Dan.
- Marion?
- Why else?
No, I mean, how is Marion?
Oh. The usual.
- Spunky.
- Uh-huh.
Permission to come aboard!
Here we go.
- Frank, how are you?
- Joseph!
- Not late, are we?
- Not at all, not at all.
- Who's he?
- Boring Frank Barham,
the pill of the
Hearst publishing world.
They are invited to remind WR
that for every one of us
- There are two of them.
- What's the wife called?
Who knows?
Oh my word!
What a big boat!
Correction, who cares?
Marion! Marion, honey.
Do you trust Tom Ince?
Do you trust him?
Well, he doesn't drink
during the day.
- Can't trust him.
- Hmm? Oh...
And I better not catch you two
talking business.
- Or what?
- Or you'll get yours.
Well, here he is.
Such a remarkable
economy of words
for one who controls
more print than Jesus Christ.
Take that back, or I'll have
to dishonor your good name.
I hope someone does.
I'm feeling rather frisky.
Lolly, Madam Glyn
would like a word.
Mrs. Glyn, I've read every one
of your wonderful,
wonderful books.
How lovely for you, dear,
but do forgive me,
I have to go to write another one.
Chief, it's nearly noon.
We should try to keep on schedule.
Raise the gangplank!
- No!
- Oh my God!
- Wait!
- Stop!
Oh, thank God.
He always does this to us!
Every time!
I'm sweating like a pig.
How am I gonna land anyone
with sweat dripping down my nose?
Don't bitch, Didi,
I'm not in the mood.
Hi! Hello!
I think this is going to be
a most enjoyable boat ride.
Yeah... the cat's meow.
That's it everybody!
Out to sea!
Jesus Christ, Tom!
- You want everyone to hear you?
- Yes!
- Be sensible, please.
- God!
You said this time
was going to be different,
that I was going to come off
George's arm and onto yours.
You will.
We've gotta be delicate.
We've got to find
the right moment.
No one cares
if you're having an affair.
Look at Hearst and Marion,
for Christ's sake!
Mrs. Hearst knows about Marion.
She doesn't approve of divorce,
but she approved the arrangement.
She wants to stay
a very rich woman
with the last name of Hearst.
Who can blame her?
Now it's your innocent,
vulnerable wife who's the excuse.
I'm trying to make
a deal with the guy.
So not getting
on his morally objectionable side...
The man's whole life
is morally objectionable!
You're getting loud!
Sorry. You just...
get me crazy sometimes.
No, you're right.
I'm sorry. It's my fault.
I'm not giving you a chance
to strut your stuff.
- I don't want to strut my stuff...
- See, there you go...
- You're selling yourself short.
- I just want to strut with you.
You're a fabulous actress
and you should be
given a chance to shine.
We can't be pushy is all I'm saying.
Let me work some of my magic
on the old man...
and we'll get you noticed.
As an actress
or on your arm?
The lady places a tall order,
but maybe we can do both.
- Yeah?
- Hmm...
"Flames of Youth"?
Dear God!
you're early for dinner.
I always like to come out
just before sundown.
The best time
to watch for seagulls.
What? Oh, yeah.
Beautiful creatures.
You know, Tom,
I just love movies.
I always thought the press
was the most powerful thing
for a communicator
- But that's not true these days.
- You're absolutely right.
Words don't always translate well
across seven continents.
But through those fabulous,
fabulous moving pictures...
Well, it's a universal language,
and morality and politics...
and any other goddamn thing
I can put into someone's head.
Son of a bitch!
Your days are numbered,
you little bastard!
You gotta keep your gun low
or else they see it.
Yeah, yeah... I see.
- Can I be frank with you, WR?
- You can be whoever you like, Tom.
I think your eye for movies
is right on target.
- You do?
- But you have to face facts.
There's some things
even you can't control.
- Like what?
- Your whole empire,
your family,
is based on the east coast.
- The movies are in California.
- I'm aware of that.
You should also be aware
that movie producers
can't send orders over the telephone
and they can't have yes men
represent them
when real decisions...
You're being
almost inexcusably frank.
God damn it!
There's a lot of money
in movies, WR.
Yeah, mine!
I've made millions
from this business and...
we both know that despite
the quality of your pictures
you've never made back a dime...
All right, suppose I believe
your frank observations,
are you implying that Thomas H. Ince
can make a difference?
I'm not implying,
I'm stating.
I'm talking about personally
overseeing Cosmopolitan Pictures.
- Marion's career in particular.
- How personally?
consulting with you on which scripts
and directors are right for her.
- Making sure her productions...
- What's in it for you?
The stories in Cosmopolitan
and other magazines, for starters.
It's not that I doubt your
background in the business, Tom.
On the contrary... that's just where
it's been lately, in the background.
You have to admit, you're not
the force you were five years ago.
That maybe true
of both of us, WR.
But I think we both have
different strengths
to help
the other's weaknesses.
No offense, Tom...
But if I'm in trouble I don't need
a cripple to help me up.
Ha! Gotcha!
Look at him fall.
That's the one that tried
to get away before. Stupid bird!
You've ever eaten a seagull, Tom?
- No.
- They taste awful.
Just like eating a crow.
Are you gonna let me in?
I'll kick the door in.
I'll kick your teeth in.
- Come to my room then.
- Your room?
I mean it. I have a love letter
that needs proofreading.
Why don't you have Lita
proofread it?
- She's not old enough to read.
- How could I forget?
Admit it. You're in love
with me, aren't you?
Not as much as you are
with you, Charlie.
Oh, Doctor. There's something
I wanted to ask you.
Every time I eat grapes
I get extreme palpitations.
I wouldn't worry about it.
My heart starts pounding
and then I break out in a rash.
Everything all right, Chief?
Everything's just fine.
I can't believe he still
only let us have one drink.
Well, Didi, it is illegal.
Yeah, but not for us.
You had yours?
I'm saving it for later
when I'll really need it.
"I don't need a cripple."
He actually said that to you?
Nice way to treat
the guest of honor, huh?
If I had the same mean streak,
I'd throw that fling
Marion and Chaplin are having
right on his face.
- Marion and Chaplin?
- Saw them holding hands on deck.
Notice they're the only ones
we're still waiting for.
I advise you
to keep it to yourself.
- I know, I'm a decent man.
- I need my escort, if you don't mind.
I hope you were not waiting for me
to eat your appetizers.
Since you've decided
to grace us with your presence,
perhaps you'd have the decency
to tell us where to sit.
If Willie had it his way,
he'd talk business all night.
So you, Mr. Birthday Boy,
will sit at my end of the table.
And Willie, why don't we have
Charlie sit by you
- To keep you laughing all night?
- Or is that vice versa?
Now, Charlie,
hold your tongue.
And your seat.
You got me, WR.
I've done it to many people,
but never had it done to me.
How does it feel?
Get over here, Lolly.
Sit down.
That was hysterical, Mr. Hearst.
Good band, huh?
the saxophone player, eh?
Yeah, isn't he...
ooh, you caught me.
So, Big Joe, what have you
been up to since I saw you last?
Well, I saw you
in "Lady of the Harem."
Ohh, you did, huh?
And what did your mama
think about that?
Well, Mama was sitting
on my lap.
You're a dirty, dirty boy.
I should forget about him
if I were you.
Pardon me?
Married moguls and mistresses
don't mix, Margaret.
Oh, it's rather good.
I must use that in a novel.
- Have you got a pen?
- Yes.
Marion, not even a teensy weensy
bit of business talk?
What is it, Tom?
I'm trying to negotiate
a deal with WR,
and you gotta tell me the secret.
How do you get through to him?
- You want to know my secret?
- Uh-huh.
I don't have to do
a goddamn thing.
I don't follow you.
People have funny ideas
about me and Willie.
- The whole gold-digger thing.
- No, no, no! I didn't mean...
The truth is,
Willie did the pursuing.
He used to buy two seats every night
when I was in the Follies.
One for him
and one for his hat.
I never once asked him
to put me in a picture.
It would take more to get him
to stop putting me in his pictures.
That's my secret, Tom.
With Willie, I don't have to dig.
So, your husband
is Mr. Frank Barham?
- Yes, he certainly is.
- Hello, darling.
- Who's that?
- That's Mr. Barham.
Oh, I thought maybe
your lover was on board. Too bad.
- Dan, don't be modest.
- Oh, no.
Mr. Hearst takes full responsibility
for Cosmopolitan Pictures.
Everyone knows you're one
of his top executives.
I'm actually a physician by trade.
- Oh, you're a doctor?
- Semi-retired.
Oh nice. Very...
Maybe I should ask you.
What do you think, Charlie,
about Marion's pictures,
how we've been handling her?
I don't think you've recognized
that she's a wonderful comedienne.
I mean, her eyes, her smile,
her laugh. She's a delight.
Comedy... I don't want people
laughing at Marion.
Well, she doesn't need
any more stodgy period dramas.
Excuse me, but Marion belongs
in serious, important pictures,
certainly not running around
in baggy pants comedy.
No offense, Charlie.
Excuse me, you're not doing
what's right for Marion.
No offense, WR.
I'd like to make a toast.
It's usually Willie's job,
but as you know,
a few weeks ago, us gals,
we got to vote for president again.
So I figured I can do
whatever the hell I darn well please.
Here's to our birthday boy.
Not only did Tom
invent the cowboy picture,
but he helped build this town.
He figured out how to run
a studio that could make
- 1 0 movies at the same time.
- And took credit for all of them!
Oh, Willie!
- To Tom!
- To Tom!
Thank you.
That was very sweet.
Mr. Hearst,
I just want to say,
it's so wonderful
to be here.
The more I see
the lovely people of California
the more I'm reminded
of the need for a columnist...
You know, Lolly, the first rule
of California living
is never to mix
business with pleasure.
Now, what were you saying?
Oh, uh...
I was just saying it's so...
wonderful to see
all these fascinating people
assembled in one place.
You see, Charlie?
That's why I've hired her.
Even with a gun
to her head
she still gives me
unconditionally rave reviews.
As long as nobody
pulls the trigger...
What are you laughing about
down there?
It was the funniest thing ever!
it was all about...
there was a gun at my head
and somebody
pulled the trigger!
Guns and triggers, such violence!
All in line with Madame Elinor's
California Curse.
California Curse?
What's that?
Not that nasty thing.
Not now.
Yes, Elinor,
do educate our visitor.
The California Curse
strikes you like a disease
the minute you set foot in Hollywood,
so pay close attention.
Oh, I am, I am.
You see,
this place you've arrived in,
this place we call home,
isn't a place at all,
but a living creature.
A living creature?!
More precisely, an evil wizard.
Like in the old stories.
- And you all live on him?
- Like fleas on the belly of a mutt.
But unlike the helpless dog,
this wizard is able to banish
the true personalities
of those he bewitches,
forcing them against their will
to carry out his command,
to forget
the land of their birth,
the purpose of their journey,
and whatever principles
they once held dear.
Don't forget about the symptoms,
that's my favorite part.
The curse is taking hold of you
if you experience the following:
you see yourself as the most
important person in any room;
you accept money
as the strongest force in nature;
and finally,
your morality vanishes...
without a trace.
Well, thank God none of us
have been infected, eh, WR?
Umm... yes.
Thank God for that.
Charleston, everybody!
Come on, Pops,
let's show 'em how it's done!
You bet!
What are you looking at?
Oh, I'm tired.
Let's sit down.
Sit? I want to pound my feet so hard
the devil will complain.
Come on, Jay,
take us to the moon!
They've just shot all this
a couple of days ago.
I haven't seen
any of it yet.
It's wonderful...
You see that throne?
That throne
is from the 1 6th century.
That's King Lewis II.
I brought that over from Hungary.
Honey, you're wonderful.
Just wonderful.
Get in there!
- Ow!
Wow, Marion, look at you!
Yeah, but that movie
sure went in the shithouse.
Okay, Willie's at the wheel
for two hours so who's first?
- I am!
- Hands off, you little tramp!
Marion, you always have
the best moonshine.
That's because every hour,
bottles arrive from her many admirers.
Well, this one sure's got
sex appeal. Who gave it to you?
Who do you think?
Hmm, I see...
Well, it's mine now.
Ahoy there.
Tom, how are you?
That was some banquet.
Wait until tomorrow. Marion's
prepared quite a birthday feast.
- Marion is a special woman.
- Yep, she is.
It's so hard to love someone
in our business.
There's so many men
who prey on beauty.
And not sincerely either, but
in cruel ways, just for the conquest.
Take a character
like Chaplin for example.
He's absolutely notorious.
I'm sure you've heard about Lita,
his leading actress.
Apparently she's pregnant
with his child...
she's only 1 6
for Christ sakes!
That's why I keep my Nell
far away from show people.
Women aren't as strong as we are.
They're easily fooled,
their hearts
are easily corrupted.
Yeah, yeah, it is a concern.
It must be, especially...
considering the amount of time you're
forced to spend 3,000 miles apart.
This might be something else
I can help you with.
- What do you mean?
- Well...
if we were to merge
our motion picture interests,
along with
all the other benefits,
I could keep an eye
on her for you.
What makes you think
she needs to be watched?
- Well, she certainly has...
- Is four a crowd?
Not at all. Join us.
You were saying, Tom?
We can talk later.
- Such a charming cabin!
- Good night, everyone.
What a nice man.
Yes. Very nice.
- Here I am with surprises!
- Charlie!
- Let's see what you got, Celia.
- It's dope, Didi.
You had that
the whole car ride?
If I'd told you in the car
that box would be empty right now.
Is it true what they say
about a Jazz man and his instrument?
- Every word, sister.
- Oh!
You're with me.
Come on.
You're not gonna be a flat tire
about our playtime, are you?
You do as you like,
Marion, dear.
Just don't expect me to join you
in such infantile nonsense.
Frank, I admire your marriage.
So simple... clean.
- Thank you, WR.
- Nothing complicating things.
Frankly I feel uninteresting
compared with the...
colorful lifestyles
of your other guests.
Lord knows what
they're all up to at this hour.
I won't hear such talk.
The codes of decency are something
to be held in high regard.
We should feel no shame for not being
as liberal-minded as the rest.
Darling, please.
No disrespect, but you know what
one of those actress persons
- Said to me at dinner?
- What?
She had the gumption
to ask if Frank was my lover!
- No!
- Yes!
What did you tell her?!
I said, "Mr. Barham is my husband,
deary, we're not lovers."
- You set her straight.
- The thought of such a thing!
Among the finest
I've ever tasted, Celia.
The absolute finest.
- Who is it?
- It's me.
If you say,
"It's Tom Ince
to see Ms. Margaret Livingston
alone in her cabin
on a Saturday night,"
you'll get a big surprise.
It's uh...
Tom Ince to see
Miss Margaret Livingston
alone in her cabin
on a Saturday night.
I suppose that's the best
I'll get out of you.
...He said it was a sausage!
All right, everyone,
time for charades!
We call them "sha-raids."
These are the subjects
I've prepared.
We will be one team.
Very well.
Didi and Celia
will be team two.
- What a gyp.
- Shut up!
Come on, Marion. Choose.
Two medical students
I once knew.
- Let them get started.
- Noo...
"Indian Love Call,"
by Harback and Hammerstein!
- Guppies!
- No, no.
King and Queen Tut!
There was no Mrs. Tut!
- Oh oh oh!
- Oh, he's getting her now.
I know! Sex!
This charade
is being misread.
Marion, come outside
so I can explain it to you.
Now, Marion,
what's going on?
I promised myself
this wouldn't happen.
You had to promise yourself?!
I don't know,
l... can't think straight.
Have you slept with him?
- No.
- Have you?!
- No!
- Thank God.
You're not
in love with him?
He thinks
he's in love with me.
Charles is only capable
of a monogamous relationship
with his own movies.
But I want
to trust him before l...
Before you what?!
Listen to what you're saying!
You know, Willie's the first man
who ever had faith in me.
And I'm all he's got
keeping him a human being.
I think he'd... he'd...
he'd die if I left him.
I think he would.
And you think Charles Chaplin
would die if you left him?
Charlie might cry
at my grave
and recite
some lousy poem he wrote.
But give him a day or two
and he'd be back in the market.
A day or two?
Charles would copulate
with a reasonably attractive
What is it, baby?
I'm sorry.
No. Don't be sorry.
- It's just that...
- Talk to me.
- It's just what?
- Everything.
- I feel like it's all slipping away.
- What is?
Everything. Me.
Tonight Hearst called me
a cripple in the picture business.
- That's a lousy thing to say.
- Do people see me as a cripple?
- No.
- Or a credit hog?
- No, honey.
- Oh God...
I used to be a force
in this town.
- You are a force.
- Not too long ago.
I used to make 40 pictures a year.
Now I'm lucky if I
can get one off the ground.
- God, I need him so badly.
- You'll get him.
- You think so?
- I know so.
- Do you?
- Yeah, I know it.
You're a force.
- I am, aren't I?
- You are.
Marion must think
you're a lousy kisser
or else she'd be back by now.
Hey, Charlie,
you look just like
Adolphe Menjou in this ad.
That's 'cause
it is Adolphe Menjou.
No wonder I never heard
of the picture. Who wants to see
a Charlie Chaplin production
without Charlie Chaplin?
Type it up, will you?
Just be strong
and keep telling him no.
- Understand?
- Yeah.
Four people on the bed
and Chaplin's the only one asleep.
That's something
you don't see every day.
A wire's come through
from the New York office.
It's an item
that will be published
in tomorrow's
New York Daily News.
- Grace Kingsley.
- Oh God!
Which one of my pictures
is she bashing now?
- I'll leave it here for you.
- No, no, go ahead and read it.
"Charlie Chaplin
continues to pay
ardent attention
to Marion Davies.
He's spent the evening
at Montmartre dining and dancing
with the fair Marion
the other night.
There was a lovely young dancer
entertaining that evening.
And Charlie applauded
but with his back turned.
He never took his eyes off
Marion's blonde beauty.
Miss Davies looked
very fetching indeed."
Studio close-ups
of each of them.
- Placed side by side?
- Yeah.
"They're still seen around
with each other."
I'll leave it here for you.
Fine, fine.
You can go now.
- Shall I make a call?
- Get out!!
- Good morning.
- Good morning.
Two men starving to death
decide to eat their hair
like spaghetti. Is that funny?
Hmm... well,
it depends whether by "funny,"
you want to make people laugh.
Sarcasm doesn't
suit your hat, Elinor.
I want to show you
something absolutely fantastic.
Bring the cannon out here!
Ladies, don't be frightened.
Mr. Cannonball!
Bring it up here, boys.
How is it going?
Get back, boys.
Get out of the way.
Put those down there.
- Ready, Mr. Cannonball?
- I'm ready.
All right. Get back,
you'll get blown up.
Only us brave performers
are gonna stay up here.
- Ready, Mr. Cannonball?
- I'm ready!
Amazing, amazing!
Every single time! By jingles!
I don't know how many times
I've seen you do that
but it never
ceases to amaze me.
I believe I saw you before
on Catalina last summer.
Yep. Catalina,
up and down the coast from Frisco
clear on down to Ensenada.
Wherever you see a cannonball
hit a man's stomach
and you see that same man
walk away on both legs,
you're seeing me.
Didn't I tell you?
- Tom, that was good.
- Wonderful.
You've seen it
1 00 times...
How many more times
do you suppose it'll take
before the cannonball explodes
through the poor man's back?
I don't know, but Hearst will be there
with a match in his hand.
That is what
he's waiting to see.
You know, Margaret,
there's a certain
unspoken bond
between single women who
are trapped on a yacht together.
What Didi wants to know is,
is it true
you're Tom Ince's lover?
- I beg your pardon?
- I think he's very attractive.
Not to mention influential.
He's a little short,
but then every man in this town
is much smaller
than you'd like him to be.
Excuse me.
Have you lost your mind?!
I've tried your approach.
It doesn't work.
I have to show him I can handle
his private life too.
- Marion only affects him.
- By proving Marion's unfaithful?!
Which will make him
hate you forever.
I know you're looking
for some harpoon,
but this one
is dangerously double-edged.
- Tom, we need to talk.
- Not now, Margaret.
Hi, everyone!
Did I miss it?
- He can do it again.
- Shut up.
Oh, you just missed it!
It's amazing how I manage
to miss it every time.
Hello. I don't think
we've been properly introduced.
I'm Jessica Barham,
Frank Barham's wife.
- Margaret Livingston.
- Charmed.
And what is it
that you do?
I'm Tom Ince's lover.
You're listening
to KFI's studio orchestra
with our weekend
musical number,
Right here
on the voice of the southland.
I've been looking
all over for you.
How about that tour
you've been promising?
- Oh, yeah.
- I've been meaning to tell you...
I have news...
If you were starving and had no food,
would you eat your shoe?
- What?!
- Your shoe. Would you eat it?
- Of course I would.
- You would?
- I'd have to boil it.
- That's funny.
Well, this isn't.
Daily News gets the scoop.
Embarrassing for Willie,
not even a Hearst newspaper.
If Willie asks you, I want you
to tell him what I've told him,
- That it's all cheap gossip.
- You lie if you want to,
if he asks me I'll look right
in those impotent eyes
and tell him I want to take
his girl, rip off her dress...
Don't punish me
for being with Willie!
You're scared 'cause you can't
admit that you love me.
I can say it!
I love you, Marion!
- I love Willie!
- He could never love only you!
He has his papers and his
politicians and his wife and kids.
I can give you all my love.
Did you promise Lita
all your love
and then take it away
now that she's pregnant?!
That was a mistake!
My fascination with Lita
is caused by some part of me
that's trying to tear my life apart.
But I could never love her.
I could never marry her.
If I did it would destroy
- Everything I've worked for.
- It's all about you, Charlie!
No. I came from nothing!
You have no idea what poverty is.
I know what dirt
tastes like and you don't!
Everything I've worked for,
I've earned myself!
Yeah, and Willie
had nothing to do with it?
You wanna know about Willie?
Willie can always be trusted.
I give to him
because he doesn't demand it.
He doesn't demand it?
He expects it!
- Go to hell!
- Here's my mansion and my yacht,
here's my Marion Davies
all stuffed and mounted.
But Marion could never
leave the castle
'cause if she did she'd realize
she'd never really lived.
Why are you doing this to me?
Because we're meant to be.
Just words...
No, passion!
I don't mean
passion for... yachts
or gin or dope
or the goddamn Charleston!
I'm talking about...
I'm talking about...
Now that,
boy, that is
a thing of beauty, WR.
I tell you,
I may be married to Nell,
but boating is my secret love.
What? Oh, yes.
Secret love.
And this boat...
has always
made me happy. Calm.
My God,
it practically purrs!
When I come down here,
this sound calms me.
You're a civilized man, WR.
Why does that surprise you?
Because, you have the power
to act uncivilized.
You could overstep the rules,
but you don't.
Before I'd call you
a rich or a powerful man,
I'd simply call you decent.
Thank you, Tom.
I'm not just saying that.
It's amazing to me
how civilized
you've been
behaving all weekend.
I mean... considering.
Considering what?
Well, it's clear...
Chaplin has designs on Marion.
I mean...
the nerve of him
flirting so blatantly.
After you.
Everyone knows
what he's up to.
It must be so infuriating.
Yes, I have everything
under control.
What do you mean "everyone"?
You just said "everyone" knows.
Who's everyone?
everyone on this boat
for example.
If someone
was coming after my Nell,
I don't know that
I'd be able to exercise such...
impressive restraint.
You always
have to keep control.
Otherwise you're
just like everybody else.
Excuse me...
Could I get into the library?
Damn! I locked it!
Sorry about that, Dan.
I'll see you up top, Tom.
"Up Top, Tom," try to say
that three times fast.
Thanks for the weekend.
Thanks for playing with me.
Don't mention it.
It really is
rather dull, isn't it?
What is?
- I thought you wanted to play.
- I did. I want to get better.
Anybody who's anybody
plays ping-pong.
It is rather dull. I only play
'cause I can beat Tom.
- Tom Ince?
- That's right.
Why should it matter
if you can beat Tom Ince?
Because Tom Ince is my lover.
That is fascinating.
I mean,
that is truly fascinating.
We only just met,
and yet you instinctively
feel like you can trust me.
You know something,
that's happened to me
all my life.
People feel
that they can confide
their deepest
darkest secrets in me.
Like you just did.
I hate to burst your bubble,
I would have told whoever
was on the other side
of that ping-pong table.
Yes, but how fortunate
that I just learned how
to play ping-pong
or else you might have told
the wrong person.
There are wrong people,
you know.
Yes, I know.
Don't worry,
your secret is safe with me.
My serve?
Marion! Marion!
Bring it in!
Happy birthday, Tom!
Make a wish!
All right, here it goes.
Would you take it to be cut?
Thank you.
All right, hold it down back there.
Hold it down.
I want to propose
a birthday toast
to my good friend
and cowboy creator,
- Thomas Harper Ince,
one of the giants
of the motion picture industry.
To just give you an idea
of how big he is,
he's just made a proposal
that we merge our holdings
in the motion picture industry.
We haven't come
to an agreement yet,
but I can say, that he's one of
the most insightful and...
observant men
I've ever known.
Perhaps now's the time...
I hereby call this meeting
of the board of directors
Officially over!
All right, all right.
Music, music!
Here's to Tom!
Thank you, WR.
You're too generous.
Now the real thing on everyone's
mind is whether or not
Willie will let us have
another glass of champagne?
Is that what's on everybody's mind?
A second glass of champagne?
Well, it's on my mind,
I can tell you that.
I do not ask much.
But the little I do ask I...
must be respected.
I don't say this...
as a threat,
It's just a wish
I have as a man.
I'm a man
asking for people to...
behave according to my wishes...
on my boat.
Why is that
so difficult to understand?
Charleston! Charleston!
Excuse me for one moment.
I'll be right back.
- Everything all right, Tom?
- Yeah. Damn ulcer. It'll pass.
Watch it, Charlie,
we're doing the tramp now.
I'm proud of you.
Proud of what?
I'm observant, I'm insightful
but I still
don't have a deal yet.
- Tom, for God's sake...
- You don't understand.
I need a firm decision from him
or this whole weekend is worthless.
- Let's dance, Georgie-Porgie.
- Certainly.
Ladies and gentlemen,
I give you Marion Davies,
The New Tramp.
Hello, Tom.
I have to thank you again
for making this birthday so memorable.
Don't mention it.
I also want to thank you
for your kind words
about my business proposition.
I really think
we'd make a great team.
Yes, Tom.
Partnerships of any kind
are based on two things,
and sharing.
If you had information to share
with me I'd trust you to do so.
That's why I think it best that
I bring something to your attention.
While you've been busy
being such a gracious host,
I've been keeping an eye
on another situation.
Thank you, Tom.
I needed to know.
Now I'll...
I'll handle this matter.
You see what I want,
I want Mr. Hearst to listen to me
but I don't want to be rude.
You'll get nowhere with WR
by behaving politely.
Good manners are
for waiters and doormen.
Writers and artists are exonerated
from such impractical behavior.
Best to avert your eyes, dear.
But what about the baby, Charlie?
Willie'll turn the lead
into the biggest scandal.
The press knows already.
There hasn't been a scandal yet.
It'll be a scandal
if you don't marry her.
Or worse, if you run off
with some gorgeous blonde.
They'll rip you to pieces.
You'll look so pretty
while you're digging my grave.
Come in.
I did it.
I got to Hearst.
You didn't get him just yet.
I've taken care of any worries
the old man might have.
I'm glad someone's worries
have been taken care of.
Oh, come on, honey.
I mean...
I'm feeling good right now.
Don't spoil it for me, okay?
I wouldn't want
to spoil anything.
I'm having the best time,
playing ping-pong
with Lolly Parsons
and hanging around for those
moments you want to screw!
I'm sorry that in the middle of
trying to save my professional life
I wasn't able to give
your acting career a boost.
This isn't about
my acting career, God damn you!
This is about us!
I... really don't have
time for this.
I want out.
Not again.
- No, not again. This is it.
- I'm liable to take you seriously.
That would be the first time.
All right.
I can see that you're in no mood
to discuss this rationally so,
I'll take a walk on deck,
let you calm down.
But, if you still want out,
please have the decency
to be discreet.
Why, I'm the very flower
of decency.
Here's your
goddamn birthday present!
Shut the hell up!
We've got to say the hell
with the press and Lita and Willie
- 'cause we believe in us.
- Charlie...
I know, I know.
Time, time...
My mother always said,
"Romantic love fades.
Marry for sympathy
and friendship."
But you're not married.
Maybe Marion's awake.
I loved Willie...
or I still love him.
- You gotta think about us now.
- Hey, have faith in me, okay?
I have faith.
What do you think about this?
"The Gold Rush," starring
Charlie Chaplin and Marion Davies.
- What?!
- I gotta replace Lita.
- So, I'm your second choice?
- You would've been my first if...
If I had slept with you sooner.
We were good tonight.
Well, I was good.
I was better.
Oh my God!
- Tom. It's you.
- Who were you expecting?
No one.
I... had a chill for a moment.
Can I be frank with you?
If I'm going to be
overseeing your pictures,
I need for us to come to terms
about a few things.
Things that are...
troubling WR.
Like you and...
And I'd be the first to admit
that I had my share of indiscretions.
But I need
to know the truth
in order to balance
your needs with...
with those of WR.
He will find out, you know.
And when he does, I'd rather be
someone who can help you.
How do I look?
Silly, right?
Charlie had certain feelings for me.
But I've convinced him
that it's useless to pursue me.
He says he loves me.
But there was never any love.
At least not from my side
there wasn't.
I don't love him.
I never have.
So... that's it.
That's really all there is.
Noo! Nooo!!
What? Be quiet!!
Oh my God, Willie,
what the hell did you do?
I'll be right there.
Hurry! Please!
Oh, Christ's sake!
I didn't mean to do it.
It was an accident.
Oh, for God's sake!
Shut her up.
Is he dead?
It's okay, Lolly.
It's all right.
Shh... it's okay.
Come on,
let's get you to your room.
We've got to get him
to some real facilities.
Where's the closest port?
Where's the closest port?
It must be San Diego.
Come on, Pops,
let's stand up.
Here, let's go this way.
- That was Tom.
- Willie.
That was Tom.
Look at me.
- Huh? What?
- You've got to be strong.
Why did you say...
there was never any love?
That wasn't about you.
Who then?
I was talking about Charlie.
Is that true?
Yes! That's who
I was talking about.
You see,
you are my...
my whole...
whole world!
Is he gonna die?
- Maybe.
- God help us.
- God is who we work for.
- Then God's in trouble.
Come on, who do you think
got Coolidge elected President?
It's just Tom Ince
lying here, right?
- Who knows Tom Ince?
- Just a guy, I guess.
Less than that.
if we move him,
what are his chances?
It's hard to say, WR,
there doesn't seem
to be an exit wound.
The bullet's in his brain
and he's still alive?
It's not uncommon.
Lincoln didn't die right away.
If they'd known more about bullets
and brains he might've survived.
- We know any surgeons in San Diego?
- Nobody we can trust.
I'd rather get a private ambulance
from Los Angeles and treat him up there.
Then get cars for the others
two hours later. No sooner, Joe.
Lincoln was overrated.
Let's move Tom now so we can
get him off the boat fast.
- Your cabin would be best.
- All right.
I think he's trying
to say something.
why don't you take Marion
to her cabin and...
you give her these.
It'll help her sleep.
You can handle that?
Of course I can.
I'm not a child!
Tom's gonna be all right.
Aren't you, Tom?
Is everything all right?
I thought I heard noises.
Everything's fine, George.
Go to sleep.
l... I'm sorry...
I just...
Poor Tom...
I feel so...
He's gonna live.
I know it.
Dr. Goodman told me.
He said that...
Abraham Lincoln was...
never mind that.
You have to take these.
- Grab him!
- I got him.
Is someone there?
It's just Dr. Goodman...
...sorry to wake you.
That's all right.
All right.
I'll get things started.
- WR?
- Hmm?
Joe, yes, yes.
Be careful,
just lift him very gently.
That's it.
Be careful.
Watch his head.
What the hell?!
I thought we said the cars
wouldn't be here for two hours.
I don't know
what he's doing here so soon.
He's not one of mine.
I called Chaplin's driver.
- God damn it, Joe!
- He always insists on his own man.
I didn't want to arouse
any more suspicion than necessary.
Oh no.
No suspicion at all!
Hello? Hello?
Nell? WR Hearst here.
Mr. Hearst, how are you?
- I'm fine, Nell.
- I'm glad to hear it.
Unfortunately, Tom's had
an accident. A bad one.
Oh dear God! What happened?
- Nell,
- Yes?
I don't know to tell you this,
except to start by saying that
Tom's been very depressed
about his business lately.
I know.
Well, I hate to be
the one to tell you,
- He's been unfaithful.
- What do you mean?!
Just let me get there,
will you?
He uh...
he's taken to her
very strongly,
and to the best of my knowledge...
she tried to end it.
Please, tell me
what's happened to Tom.
Now, Nell...
well, God-save-'im,
he shot himself.
Huh? Shot himself?
Nell, he's alive,
and he's getting
the best of care.
Our Dr. Goodman
is escorting him to your home
by private ambulance.
I'm here.
Give me the name of his
private physician. Can you do that?
Yes. It's Dr. Glasgow...
Ira Glasgow in...
That's fine.
By God, Nell, I'll make sure
none of this gets in the papers.
Oh my God, you have to!
- I just said I would, Nell.
you've got to remain strong
and silent,
and wait for Dr. Glasgow.
We'll have him there
any time now.
I'll wait for the doctor...
bless you, Mr. Hearst.
No one will ever find out.
I value Tom's friendship
too much for that.
- Sorry, what did you say?
- His friendship, Nell!!
- Of course...
- We...
we're telling everyone
that it's his stomach.
- His ulcers.
- Ulcers, yes.
I know this is hard,
but I've got to hang up now
and call Dr. Glasgow.
- You just sit and wait.
- Just sit and wait...
- Goodbye, Nell.
- Tom. Poor Tom...
Good morning, Chief.
You seem well rested.
Yes, well...
whatever Dr. Goodman gave me
put me right to sleep,
thank goodness.
I'm so glad.
It was a tragic accident,
Mr. Hearst.
Yes, Lolly?
these things do happen,
as they say.
It's nobody's fault, really,
when you consider all sides.
You're very good at that,
considering all sides.
You meet so few people
capable of considering all sides.
It's a goddamn gift.
Mr. Hearst,
I must confess, and...
I know I've been
a bit obvious but l...
you have a second to talk?
I have two
and one half minutes.
Well, I was gonna break one of
your golden rules this weekend
by mixing
business with pleasure.
I was going to ask you
about expanding my syndication
with a more prominent by-line.
Why didn't you say something?
I'm sure we can arrange...
I was going to say something
but then I started thinking,
and the only way I can have
a real effect on the readers
and the community that
I'm covering,
is if I have time.
Lots of time,
I agree with you, 1 00%.
I'll have the office draw up...
an eight-year contract.
Eight years?
WR, now really.
Eight years won't do
either of us any good.
We're at the point
in our careers
where we need security.
Security from whom?
The wrong people.
There are wrong people,
you know.
I know.
I'm willing to devote my life
to Hearst newspapers.
But I need to know
here and now
that you're willing
to grant me the life I want.
You give me my security...
and I'll give you yours, WR.
For a lifetime.
Lifetime contract...
Is that a question
or an answer, WR?
I swear I heard a shot.
Some people
will say anything to get attention.
I did!
I heard noises all night.
But not a gunshot.
The only shot Didi was close to
had whiskey in it.
Be quiet,
I know what I heard.
I heard noises too.
Have you seen Tom?
Why have we stopped?
Where are we?
We're in San Diego, sir.
But I don't know the plan.
We weren't scheduled to stop here.
I'm aware of that.
Perhaps he's
taken up shooting fish.
It's just me.
- I love you.
- Is he all right?
He's gonna be fine.
Everything is.
Now you go back to sleep.
What brings you to San Diego?
They told me change in plans.
- Who told you?
- Mr. Hearst's office.
- Has anybody left yet?
- Just the doctor and the injured man.
- Injured?
- There were bandages on his head.
- There was blood.
- What man?
I don't know. For a minute
I thought he was you.
- Was he conscious?
- Not to my eyes.
Goddamn Jap!
...Or WR shot an albatross
for our breakfast!
You know it's bad luck
to shoot an albatross.
- Good morning, Charlie.
- Good morning.
Good morning.
- Unfortunately, I have bad news.
Tom Ince took ill last night
and decided to leave early.
- What was wrong with him?
- He said his ulcers were acting up.
- Why didn't anyone call me?
- Hell, we wanted to,
but Tom said
not to bother you.
He's fine.
Dr. Goodman is taking him home.
Where's Marion and Lolly?
Ah... they looked after Tom
during his difficulties.
You know,
Lolly has an ulcer herself.
They were up half the night.
They're both still resting.
given the delay,
means that we have to cut
our journey short here in San Diego.
- You're kidding.
Oh, no.
Don't worry,
I've already got cars for everyone.
We must go up
and visit the birthday boy.
That's a splendid idea.
However, there is one thing
I want to ask you,
and I can't say this
with enough seriousness.
To our eyes,
Tom Ince left this boat
with a bout of angry ulcers.
But I can't begin to imagine
what the press is going to make up.
Wild birthday party,
illegal alcohol, orgies...
Reputations are...
so fragile.
Just terrible.
They'll link
Tom's innocent ulcers
to every secret
everyone of us ever kept.
And drag us all down.
I'm asking you to join me
in uh...
in an oath of silence.
Just a little one.
You were asleep,
you left early,
any excuse you like.
But you do not know
what happened to Tom Ince
aboard this boat.
I would love
to take an oath... any oath.
Me too!
Let's make it in blood.
Rather dramatic, WR,
but I'll take an oath to that.
Of course, why not?
Good. Thank you all.
Oh, Charlie...
Are you all right?
What the hell
is going on here?
I'm sure I speak for Tom when I say
thank you all for coming
and making his birthday
such a memorable event.
Why don't we all pack
and meet on deck in an hour?
Did all this happen
before or after I saw you?
Saw me? When?
Last night, in the corridor.
You didn't see me, Tom.
It's George, and...
All you have to do is get
in that limousine and go home.
But he doesn't
even look like me!
He... he... put on your hat,
it was dark...
Excuse me, Mr. Hearst.
Are you sure Tom's all right?
He's just fine.
Everybody is talking about noises...
sounds, gunshots...
I haven't had the chance to tell you
you're quite a fine actress.
Thank you, but if Tom
wasn't feeling well...
Please, don't worry,
he's getting the best of care.
We need to meet at the studio.
God, you're good!
I saw that picture that you did
and you played the... uh...
the lovely young woman,
what was it called?
Oh, I can't remember the title,
but you were splendid.
What about next week?
Friday? How's that?
Friday. Uhm...
I... I want you to know
that Tom spoke
very lovingly about you
and he wanted you
to know that
he's very sorry
about what happened.
Why wasn't I awakened?
Didn't he want me to accompany him?
Accompany him?
Child, you're his mistress.
You can't accompany him home
to greet his wife and children.
I'll see you Friday.
What are you waiting for?
Let's get off this bloody boat!
- You have things to do.
- I just bet he does.
Okay, WR, here I am.
Easier to hit than a seagull.
You left this in his room.
There's something
for your scrapbook, Charlie.
I sure as hell didn't get
Tom Ince's blood on it!
You two are the reason
for that blood!
Haven't you
any sense of responsibility?
Did I pull the trigger
or shoot him in the head?!
That version of events
can be arranged, Charlie.
I can produce three witnesses
on this boat alone.
You see?
It's better for everyone
if Tom Ince
had an ulcerous attack.
And you, Marion?
Better for you?
Only Marion
knows what's best for her.
As long as it agrees
with her master's voice.
All I want
is to see Marion happy.
That's what I devoted my life to
for the past seven years.
And all the years
I've got left.
Can you promise that, Charlie?
If he can, Marion,
and if you can believe him...
then go.
Good luck to both of you.
Come on.
For how long?
For now, forever,
for as long as you want!
For as long as you want.
You're not telling me
that this...
attempted murder has
rekindled your love for Willie?
Just leave, Charlie.
Leave with me.
I love you.
Old goat's really got you,
hasn't he?
I've got me.
I am not here.
Like others with
tiny bullets hiding in their skulls,
Thomas Ince held on
unconscious for two days
before dying in his own bed.
There was plenty of misinformation
in the days following his death,
much of it coming straight
from the Hearst press machine,
which inexplicably reported
that Ince was "stricken unconscious"
while visiting Hearst
at his upstate ranch!
Three weeks later,
the San Diego District Attorney
conducted an obligatory
investigation and was,
"satisfied that the death
of Thomas H. Ince
was caused by heart failure
as a result of acute indigestion."
He did not examine the body because
Ince had been cremated immediately,
and except for Dr. Goodman,
no member of the boating party
was ever questioned,
including Hearst.
The San Diego DA suggested
that the Los Angeles office
continue the investigation.
They politely declined.
Charlie, what are you doing,
you dope?
Don't you have a ride?
I just...
I wanted to see you.
Here I am.
dead, Charlie.
I know.
I know.
I move to Mexico
in a couple of days.
Another try
at the old marriage game.
How bad can it be?
Come on, Charlie.
Get in.
And go where?
I've got arrangements to make,
avoiding the press
and that kind of fun stuff.
Come on, I'm not as pathetic
as all that, am I?
Goodbye, Charlie.
I'll send you a postcard.
"Love and Kisses
from me and the missus."
To this day,
no two accounts of that
weekend cruise are the same,
including who, in fact,
was on the boat.
There are no logs, you see,
no records or photographs of any kind.
And not a single person involved
wrote or spoke about that weekend...
that is... until significantly
after the old man's death,
and even then only in riddles.
Soon after Tom's death,
Margaret Livingston's salary
inexplicably jumped from $300
to $1,000 dollars a week.
Eventually, she retired to manage
her husband, Paul Whiteman,
the bandleader who popularized
the Charleston.
Lolly got her lifetime contract,
and for the next 30 years,
became the most powerful and feared
gossip columnist in America.
Three days after Tom's funeral,
Charlie married Lita Grey in Mexico.
It lasted two years.
He did, however,
recast her role in "The Gold Rush,"
and re-shoot all her scenes.
Despite costing a small fortune,
the picture was a smashing success.
It took three more years for WR
to let Marion do a full-fledged comedy.
As Charlie predicted,
she triumphed.
She retired in 193 7,
but stayed by Hearst's side
until his death
at the age of 88.
I've had
a recurring dream recently...
I'm back on the Oneida,
having a glorious time.
But I'm watching how ridiculous
everyone else looks
and I wonder why
they don't realize it.
Then I see that, in fact,
I too look like a fool.
Yet, it's so much fun...
that none of us can stop.
If we stopped...
we'd have nothing.
Come on, everybody!