Margot (2009) Movie Script

This film contains some strong language
and some scenes of a sexual nature.
Have you spoken to Tito? On the telephone. He
knew you were coming straight from the airport.
Madam kept a seat back for him. How did
he sound to you? Fit as a fiddle. As usual.
The authorities would've shot him if they caught
him in Panama. It's a rum do all round! Jail!
Oh, I don't know. They were even
saying His Nibs used you as a decoy
to get away, when he knew
the whole coup was a damp squib.
Oh, the press will say anything. It's
a wonderful story for them, isn't it?
I don't know, guns, boats... Madam was
ready to make an announcement, you know.
Look, Lynne has already got the costume on.
Mummy, you know how I hate letting people down.
And I had a lovely sleep
on the plane.
The show must go on.
And on and bloody on.
MUSIC: "Swan Lake" by Tchaikovsky
Tito! Oh, it's been torture.
No news for six days. And then,
when they said you were safe...
Next time, definitely more guns.
Goodness. I'm not sure I like
the idea of a next time.
We always knew there was a risk
the Guardia would be tipped off.
This is my life, you know that.
And it's infinitely more exciting
than tripping around on your toes
with Nancy boys. Admit it.
Oh, God, I must pack, for the tour.
Tell me about it.
The land in Panama.
It's on the coast.
When we build the house, you'll be able to
walk to the cove from the bottom of the garden.
Green everywhere.
We'll breed cattle -
Argentinean stock.
A simple building, no stairs.
Cool inside, from the heat.
Tiled floors.
No more class...
No class, no performance,
just the two of us.
One day, my love.
I must telephone Harmodio.
Nunez could be the weak link,
now I think about it.
There has been a coup of sorts.
Tito...was it Moreno? Did he manage
to get through to the Colombians?
At Covent Garden. Nobody told you?
Madam, Mummy and I were wondering...
Cadburys are keen on doing these for Christmas,
what do you think? Are they? I don't know...
How's the dreaded foot? Going to survive
Australia? Of course! But Mummy and I were...
Margot and I were wondering
about her becoming...
Yes, what is it, dear?
Well, it was in the press.
"Dame Margot Fonteyn has become a
guest artist with the Royal Ballet."
It was in The Times. Yes, lovely.
Perhaps it would have been nice to have been
consulted. After all she's done for the company.
You were off in Panama, darling.
The Board and I just thought
it was fairer all round.
To the audiences, you see.
They can't expect to see you
as a regular prima, can they?
Not with you dotting around the world gracing
so many other companies with your presence.
Quite right, too. Flies the flag
for the Royal Ballet, after all.
I see. Splendid! Oh, Lord, yes,
I see exactly what you mean.
Couldn't you just get rid of this?
Make it a bit less Ali Baba?
That's so much nicer
than the toffees, look.
They gave you that awful squint.
I have to get to the airport.
Prima ballerina to guest artist.
What am I honestly supposed to think?
I think you're supposed
to thank us for the promotion.
Darling, you are the bedrock
of the company, you know that.
Aw, little Peggy Hookham's
pats of butter.
Oh, God, this takes me back
to the old days.
Coppelia in Wigan.
Mind you, the weather's better.
Have you seen the digs yet? No.
Not yet. Morning, all!
Anyway, it frees you up,
doesn't it?
To pursue Dr Arias round the globe,
being the lady ambassador.
God, Margot, that's what you
famously want, isn't it?
Well, yes, of course.
But the timing has to be right.
You know that.
I can't just leave the company
in the lurch, can I?
No, of course not.
You know, Margot, there's a little chap who
gives the most fabulous injections. Belgian.
Office in Olympia. I'll give you the number when
we get back. That's sweet, Michael, thank you.
Tell me, Tito - is it really
bigger than Michael's?
You'll never know, thank God.
Oh... I like a challenge.
SHE LAUGHS Of course, you sewed
yourself up again before the marriage?
But remember, darling, I know
where all the bodies are buried.
And their cocks.
I even remember what you sounded
like before the elocution lessons.
"Lord, make me good, but not yet."
MUSIC: "Swan Lake"
22 and a half. Worst yet.
So you've decided to say
farewell to Swan Lake, eh?
Probably for the best, dear. It's a beast to dance
and it's never exactly been your finest hour.
Now, this wretched gala, you're
absolutely top of the bill,
especially now our marvellous
Russian's a no-go. Ulanova?
The commies won't let her go. It's tit for tat since
they lost the boy. The one who ran away in Paris.
They're hanging on to our marvellous Russian
in case she gets the same idea, I suppose.
In fact, he's supposed to be rather marvellous,
too, so I thought we'd better get him instead.
Nureyev? Yes, the Russian boy.
He's said he'll do it as long
as he can dance with you.
That's rather cheeky
of him, isn't it?
Darling, there's no end of gossip.
Everyone's in love with him.
They've gone dotty for him in Paris.
He has the nostrils.
Sign of genius.
Madam, I can't possibly... If you're worried
about mutton dancing with lamb, dear,
he's been partnering her at the
Kirov and she's practically my age.
He probably has to steer her around the stage
in a bath chair. Of course I'm not worried.
I just can't let Gilpin down - not
when it's been arranged for so long.
It'd be the worst possible manners.
Well, if you won't be budged,
perhaps you might at least show the
poor boy some of your famous hospitality.
Dame Margot, it seems such
a glamorous life you lead.
Oh, I think that's the costumes!
I can assure you, there's not much that's glamorous
about going to class every day and touring.
Often, I'm just home from months away
and I have to go straight off again.
One gets quite lonely.
Fortunately, Tito always sends me
roses, wherever I'm dancing.
He's very romantic. But there's no question of
you retiring, so you can spend more time together?
Oh, I just seem to dance
on and on and on!
"La Fille Mal Gardee marks a new high point in
the career of choreographer Frederick Ashton..."
And the Crystal as usual. "..and in Nadia Nerina,
he has found an enchanting new muse as Lise."
What's he playing at? Nothing!
Fred has no obligation to make
all his work on me. I have Ondine.
Three years ago, he made Ondine.
This one's for the cellar.
Mummy, Nadia's a wonderful dancer,
she deserves to shine.
Well, everyone's always
wonderful to you.
I told you about the article in the Express.
You'd be surprised how many people in high places
are eager to discredit Tito and his family.
And that includes members of the press.
High places. How many people must there have
been in that nightclub? It was a nightclub!
I go to nightclubs with members of the
company. Tito meets clients in nightclubs.
Is that what you're calling them?
Mummy, we are away from each other such
an awful lot. When things are different...
Telephone, Madam.
If wishes were horse,
then beggars would ride. Hello?
'Here is Nureyev.
I am one hour at airport.'
Oh, I'm so sorry, Madam told us you
wouldn't be arriving till much later.
Stay there, I'll send a car for you.
'I am at airport.'
Yes. Stay.
Car will arrive.
45 minutes.
Here is Nureyev.
Oh! He took a taxi, ma'am.
Lovely to meet you.
Welcome to England!
What if the KGB sent him?
Madam'd have something
to say about that.
Oh, Mummy. Thank God I stuck
to my guns about the gala.
MUSIC: "Le Corsaire"
Fuck me, darling,
he's better than Nijinsky!
Oh, I forgot to mention -
for the automatic rifles.
They do seem to be awfully expensive.
They are prohibitive, of course,
but they are the latest model.
Our contact in Geneva has turned out
even better than we had hoped.
Better without the
necklace anyway, I think.
Madam thinks I should dance Giselle
with the Russian boy, Nureyev.
Everyone's going crazy about him.
I've never seen anything like it.
But he does seem like
a bit of a loose cannon.
Tito? Hmm? What do you think?
Um, get on the bandwagon
or get out.
You don't want to be a
back number, do you, darling?
In any case, you can't make
a revolution on the cheap.
MUSIC: "Giselle"
Position is here. No, here.
Is here, no-one see me.
Is here, is better.
But that IS the position. As taught
to me by Karsavina, a Russian.
So change.
Rudolf...can I point out that I have
been dancing Giselle since 1938?
Oh, God! Don't tell me,
you weren't even born then.
No. Just... Is exact year!
Need to take everything
out of boxes,
not so tidy. Or I just there
to stop you falling.
Is no point for me, as Nureyev.
I suppose I am rather set in my ways.
Please, where I to live in London?
In hotel is no soul. Oh, dear.
Well, we have masses
of room at the embassy.
Is better.
We have conversation. Yes.
No more boxes.
Don't worry, darling. They make a lovely couple,
but I can't quite see Erik as Giselle, can you?
It would be hard if the government
condoned those actions.
Correct. Yes, especially if the
conflict hasn't been resolved yet.
I'm afraid I haven't the
slightest idea about Nicaragua.
Tito, darling, is it possible to hire
mercenaries from across the border?
You'll have to forgive my wife.
She is a child of the theatre.
Her grasp of politics is
somewhat Ruritanian.
Isn't it, my love?
Margot. You convince me.
What happened to ribbon?
There was ribbon.
Here, the day I arrived.
It was the dry cleaners.
They lost it.
I was thinking,
I might dance Swan Lake again.
Is me. I love you! Rudolf,
I could've been Cathy or anyone.
You must stop ringing.
It's really the reason
I'd given Swan Lake up.
I absolutely dread doing them!
What is mechanic for fouette?
I don't know. I just do them
and hope for the best.
Push shoulder. Push!
You are great ballerina - show me!
I must say, whatever you think
about his retire in pirouette,
he's certainly fucked
the old girl into shape.
"Last night at Covent Garden,
a miracle took place."
Gosh. "In the familiar guise
of Dame Margot Fonteyn,
"a new dancer was born, and that dancer
is the greatest dancer in the world."
Oh, golly. That was just
one of the reviews.
Oh, God, not again.
Cathy'll be handing in her notice. I've
had them ringing up, you know. Reporters.
Wanting to know
about the boy living here.
Well, I hope you told them I'm
Rudolf's London Nanny. Oh, Mummy...
All that's for the stage! People
probably think I'm part swan as well.
Maybe they do.
As long as you know what's what.
'It's a wonderful
professional partnership.'
I appreciate people would like it to be a love
story, but I am very much in love with my husband,
and Rudolf, you know,
has his own life as well!
This I cannot talk about.
Erik! I go.
Rudolf, we better to get a move on
or we'll be late for class.
Shit! You dance like shit! Shit!
then perhaps you could show me a way
to do it that isn't shit, Rudolf.
Fred says Erik has taken up an offer
to dance for the Canadians.
And now, he is back in Denmark.
Then he goes.
He say there no room
for him in London.
Not as dancer.
Not as lover.
Rudolf, I've been part of
a ballet company since I was 14.
I know how it is.
I don't expect to be the woman...
Who is this, your mother?
I'm sorry, I'm sorry, Nureyev,
I'm sorry, I'm sorry.
I be proud for you to be my mother.
Oh, thank you so much darling!
It's still not a compliment!
I see you later.
Morning, mate.
How d'you get out of this place?
Through there.
So there I am between John Wayne and Ari
Onassis, waiting to shake hands, you know?
And President Kennedy looks at us, one, two
three, and says, "Which one is carrying the gun?"
And John and Ari both point, and
at the same time they say, "Tito!"
Everything is OK for you, Rudi?
Chicken lunch, chicken performance.
I don't know if I mentioned darling, Fred is making
a new ballet for Rudolf and I, Marguerite and Armand.
You know Dumas,
Le Dame aux Camelias. Ah, yes.
The romantic prostitute.
You give the prostitute a
crinoline and she's a courtesan.
I remember the film, with Garbo.
She loves, she coughs
a little, she dies.
It's good, to bring the audiences in, considering
what they think is going on between you two.
Do you know the significance
of the camellias?
No! She wears the white ones always.
But when she bleed, she wears the
red, to tell the men not to fuck her.
I read about.
No, no. More et pul mon.
Melt into him.
Give yourself to him.
Down and lower.
Head on breast.
It's been like pulling
teeth, as per.
For me I mean.
I suppose it'll be all right.
My God, Fred!
What is it they're calling it?
The two of them could do the
Twist for all this audience cares.
Thank you, Tito.
Well. We've never heard
anything quite like it.
Absolute sheer madness.
People who've never seen a ballet in their lives
queuing with their sleeping bags to get tickets.
Mobbing us!
Marguerite and Armand has
been an amazing triumph.
Beyond our wildest dreams, really.
It was so lovely of Tito to fly in
for the first night,
considering the demands on him,
you know, in Panama.
There is really no point
trying to explain again.
Of course I understand you want to stand
for office, but what about the embassy?
Obviously, my darling, I can't be an ambassador
and run for deputy in Panama. That's what I mean!
So we'll get out of the lease
here, we buy a house over there.
I see. Goodness.
The ranch by the sea!
If I'm in the government we'll
need somewhere in the city.
Of course, I wasn't thinking.
Tito, does this mean
do you want me to give up my career?
If I'm elected, of course.
But not yet.
Good, because the timing's dreadful,
with this huge American tour.
Political campaigns eat money.
This is something important, this
is something real.
Of course when Tito and I retire we'll be able
to spend as much time together as we'd like.
I look forward to that.
But now your partnership with Rudolf
Nureyev goes from strength to strength.
The two of you have
conquered Europe.
America's next on the agenda.
Are you really thinking
of retirement? Not at the moment.
Dancing with Rudolf
is such a great gift.
He's taught me so much.
Always cash.
Of course you and your
husband have never had children.
Rudolf Nureyev is almost
20 years younger than you.
Is that something that
you're very aware of?
Not when we're dancing.
He makes me feel 25!
Come on Rudi, baby! Be cool!
Sit down.
Well, no I don't think of it as elitist
because I remember the war, you see.
Oh, no thank you. Rudolf?
The audiences were such a joy. They
came from all over, they really did.
But there wasn't anything else for the
poor bastards to do over there, was there?
This is a raid! Everybody....
Tito's wedding ring,
I've lost his wedding ring,
I must have dropped it.
It must be here somewhere.
Come on! No wait!
Released without charge,
thank God. I must say you've never
struck me as the sort to be a dope fiend.
Oh, the papers are ridiculous.
What I can't stop thinking
about is Tito's wedding ring.
It's rather hard not to see
it as some sort of an omen.
It doesn't mean anything, darling.
Of course, if it were in a ballet,
the ring would be enchanted
and its loss would
lead to your death,
beautifully, in the third act.
Aspreys'll do you a replacement.
Tito needn't even know,
if he left it in the first place...
Let's not talk about it any more.
Oh! Just like that?
There's no point, is there?
If something upsets you and
you can't do anything about it.
You should just put it in a box
and lock it tight away.
That's what I've always done,
with all sorts of things,
and it's always worked
quite wonderfully.
Rudolf was saying about Swan Lake,
how Odette and Odile used to be
danced by two different dancers,
white swan, black swan.
It's quite recent, the role as two sides
of the same personality. Odd, isn't it?
And now it's impossible to
think of it in any other way.
He's so interesting
about these things.
You know, Margot, darling,
there is such a thing as divorce.
MUSIC: "Swan Lake"
The characters you play in ballet are rather
removed from real life, wouldn't you agree?
Of course.
Giselle is an 18 year-old
peasant girl who becomes a spirit.
Odette is a princess who's
been turned into a swan.
Odile is a magician's daughter pretending to be a
princess who's been turned into a swan, goodness!
Being someone else must
be second nature to you.
Well, it's tremendous fun, you see.
Like leading a double life!
You said midnight.
I did wait up.
No, midnight. Is it?
I see. Of course, I know you've
seen Swan Lake a million times.
Yes, you too.
Oh, I wired the money to Panama.
It should be there when you arrive.
I could come and meet...
Is late.
Yes. Very.
No, you haven't understood. He isn't expecting me
because I couldn't get through on the telephone.
I fail to see how I am supposed to
manage a campaign without a secretary.
She doesn't even have her own room!
An economy.
Oh, Tito. When have you ever,
in your entire life, economised?
Must we really have
this quite boring scene?
We are not children, Margot.
We are not newlyweds.
We are not so long married.
Oh, spare me the Sleeping Beauty.
What did you think
would happen, marrying me?
Think? I loved you!
From that moment in Cambridge...
We kissed when we were 18.
And you kept yourself pure for me
until you reached
the magical age of 35
and all your friends had husbands?
Despite the fact I was
a married man with three children?
Really? How much make-believe
is there in that head of yours?
You pursued me. Yes.
And you let yourself be caught.
But this isn't the ballet, you know?
My God, there really is nothing
for you outside it, is there?
You talk of retiring,
talk and talk, but when?
When will you be MY wife?
I AM your wife.
Tito, if you want me to retire...
Oh, don't be ridiculous!
I don't understand! How can you...
how can you humiliate me like this?
Patrizia's friends had volunteered
to help with the leafleting.
"Margot, girl of mine, do not fret in
that way that you have and I so adore.
"Your Tito is with you.
"Not Tito the bold or Tito the
clown or even Tito the lover,
"but simply Tito
"who is yours.
"You must know this.
"Even if miles part us
"and my behaviour leads
you sometimes to doubt it.
"I write these words
not to make a gesture
"but merely because
they are the truth.
"Your heart knows that truth.
"Your sad,
"gentle heart
"which only I understand and cherish.
"The truth that Tito loves you
most dearly."
You get this morning? No.
Eight years ago.
A month before we got married.
Why you marry him?
So. Flowers.
The first time we
met, before the war,
then years later, when he came
to my dressing room in New York.
He always had this,
this extraordinary belief in himself.
It makes me realise
how silly it all is,
dressing up and standing
on one leg, as he calls it.
The other men, it can get rather
wearing, being considered perfect.
I suppose Tito's always made
me feel it's me he wants,
not her.
Her? Dame Margot Fonteyn.
Prima ballerina.
But that is who you are. Absolute.
Margot, marry me?
Rudolf, darling,
you're truly not the marrying kind.
I know he's invited you to Canada.
We have arrangements.
All of us.
We are sophisticated people.
I doubt very much
anyone's that sophisticated.
Oh, Rudik, you have the nostrils.
I help little bit,
when I am at school.
With pencils.
Dr Arias was held in solitary
confinement for 72 hours in connection
with the seizure of 1,000 cases
of whisky off the coast of Panama.
The contraband was on a boat connected to
a previous coup attempt made by Dr Arias.
Honestly, Mummy, there's no chance at all Tito
would get himself mixed up in something like that.
What on earth would he
want to smuggle whisky for? Money?
Hello, yes, is that
the international operator?
Yes, that's right.
I've booked a call to Rome.
Yes, of course.
Where are my roses?
Sorry, Dame Margot.
It'll be dirty tricks,
because of the campaign.
The government is
desperate to discredit him.
I don't know why they bother. He's perfectly
capable of doing that himself. Mummy!
Hello? Yes, Gritti Palace Hotel.
He's expecting my call.
No roses tonight, Dame Margot.
Hello, Tito? Oh, I see.
Perhaps you could ask him to
call me, as soon as he can.
It's his wife.
Please tell him it's important.
Cathy, did you put these in here?
Oh, yes, Mrs Arias.
They were left on the bedside table.
When Dr Arias was last here.
MUSIC: "Giselle"
'Darling, I am so sorry.'
Tito, enough.
I've had enough.
I think we should meet to talk
about a divorce, don't you?
Does the boy know?
Not yet. I feel like the
most, awful, awful failure.
Oh, for God's sake darling.
No-one knows how you've
put up with it all these years.
Is that really what people think?
Hmm? Sod what people think.
Anyway, you'll probably never be
able to pin Tito down long enough
to get him to sign divorce papers.
When it comes down to it, we're
all failures, one way or another.
Fred, you're a genius!
Everyone says so.
Oh, no-one's all they're
cracked up to be, are they?
Every time I get into a studio I haven't
a clue what I'm doing, you know that.
Complete agony.
And whatever comes out isn't a patch
on what I had in my head
when I first heard the music and
saw what it might be. Never!
Ballet demands perfection, always.
But perfection
is impossible in this life.
So why the hell you said we'd
do this awful piece
in this bloody gala,
I simply have no idea(!)
So, we work.
Bloody cheek!
What's the rest of the
costume going to be?
It's contemporary darling, no tutus.
Just me in jockstrap.
No-one will look at your feet.
There'll be plenty of other things to look at
if they don't lengthen my tunic just a bit, Fred.
Tits and teeth darling! Never fails!
Come on, chick. You'd better
go first, through the back way.
There was swarms of the
buggers when we left the studio.
They're determined to get
something on the two of you.
Very intrepid, these hacks. Maybe I
hold Fred hand, see what they say.
Don't you dare! Is that all?
Everything all right?
Bit tired.
You know what a slave driver Fred is.
And Rudolf, for that matter.
I was going to knock.
The reporters. Is Tito.
He's been shot.
He is alive.
But Tito's brother says
you must come to Panama.
You can tell me a bit more now.
He was in the car,
at traffic lights.
They catch the man.
Jimenez? Jimenez.
No, that can't be right. He and his wife
are two of our closest friends in Panama.
That is name. It can't be!
Oh, God, Rudik, it's really
the most awful timing.
Obviously the shooting came
as the most terrible shock.
It was very hard to know what to do.
I suppose I simply took it
one day at a time.
And I prayed.
He was always in my thoughts.
I'm not going to Panama. I'm not!
What's the world going to think?
Well, they can think what they like.
Harmodio says he believes
Tito is going to pull through.
That's good enough for me. God knows, Tito's the
last person in the world who'd want any kind of fuss.
Fuss? This has happened, Margot!
You can't put it in one of those
little boxes of yours and lock it away.
I hear as much company
gossip as you do.
I know you were
thinking of leaving him.
He has someone else.
She'll be there at the hospital.
She'll be the one he wants.
Oh, chick.
You're his wife.
And you need to explain yourself to
the papers. It looks so heartless.
I'd made up my mind,
I'm not missing the gala.
If you won't do it for him, think
of the company. Think of Madam.
All we've worked for.
Your duty, Margot. My duty?
God, mummy! 30 years, more, most of
them in pain of one kind or another.
I've done everything you and
Madam and Fred have asked me to.
I changed my name, my bloody nose, God
knows we made damn sure there were no,
no babies to get in
the way of my dancing.
Fred even stopped me smoking, do you
remember? "Ballerinas don't smoke".
It was worth, every bit of it.
Look where you've got to. Yes, look!
Sometimes I think if I see another flower, I'll actually
have to scream! It's lovely, to be given so much.
Yes, don't tell me, all the lessons, leaving Daddy,
scrimping for costumes, I do know. It was worth it.
Every scrap. I'm just not going to see
you throw it away. But what about me?
It's a bit late for that.
MUSIC: "Swan Lake"
Tell Fred they'll have to get Lynn
for Sunday's performance, if they can.
I don't know. There's no question
of me coming back now, Mummy.
Everything's changed.
I can't talk to Rudolf, not now.
Tell him.
I just can't.
I'm sorry, darling,
I can't give you any more, I can't.
They get him?
Jimenez? Of course not.
Modi says the Chief of Police
knows where he is.
Of course.
They're buddies.
Tito...were you "friendly"
with his wife?
You English...
are obsessed with sex.
Oh, Dr Vallarino...
I think my husband needs to be taken
to where he can get the best care.
sake, be careful with him.
Tito, darling, I have to go now, to
catch a plane for this damned festival.
I'll telephone from Spoleto. I am
so sorry. I hate having to do this.
They are paying you in lira?
No, sterling, as you said.
I insisted.
What is the ballet?
Raymonda. Ah.
I know. But imagine how beautifully
I'll be able to dance that scene
where she sees her lover
off to the Crusades.
All our goodbyes, my darling.
All my waiting for you.
Now I wait.
Thank God you taught me
to get paid in cash.
Is all for this hospital?
Well, it is the best place
in the world.
If anyone can get Tito
moving again, they can.
And what if it's not possible?
I'm not going to think about that.
I speak to Lynn in London.
She is very upset.
You and me, we dance first
performance of Romeo And Juliet.
Surely not. Kenneth made it on her
and Christopher. It's not our ballet.
Margot, we are Coca-Cola now.
Everybody want to see Fonteyn and
Nureyev, and not Seymour and Gable.
Maybe Seymour and Nureyev.
Miss Fonteyn!
You must come to hotel. It's the
telephone. Very bad. It's your husband.
You've had a terribly
high temperature. Convulsions.
But you're not to worry, Tito.
Tito, the consultant says you're
going to be perfectly all right.
I'm going to stay here.
Try to get some more sleep.
Shh, shh, shh.
So, now you are a saint.
Hardly. Yes, you are saint.
Sleep at hospital, into class, back
to performance, back to hospital.
Anyone would do the same, believe me.
Rudolf, he can't do
anything for himself.
He has to have a catheter
in his penis just to urinate.
If it were me, I would say,
"Let me die."
He has.
Every day now, when I try to give
him breakfast, that's what he says.
I hope it might be something different,
because it's so hard to understand him,
but that's what he's saying.
"I want to die."
Then what is point?
What about babies?
We could have babies.
Boy like me, girl like you.
Or just boy.
even if that were possible...
You opened all the boxes for me,
but now...
No, we opened together.
But now the time has gone.
You look old.
Yes, I don't see why not.
It's some years
since the last procedure.
The nose...
has held up well.
McIndoe, unless I'm mistaken.
That's right.
How much will it cost?
Oh, my secretary will give you
the list of my fees.
Can I say, Dame Margot, I saw you at the Wells
in the '30s, when I was a medical student.
Rio Grande.
Terrific music. Real pep to it.
Dancing that tango... My word! You were
the most ravishing creature I'd ever seen.
Like a ripe peach.
And next you will be dancing Juliet?
I very much hope so.
Kenneth MacMillan is actually making the ballet
on Lynn Seymour but I might get a crack at it.
Juliet is a 14-year-old girl.
Of course.
Always the bridesmaid...
Oh! How go the star-crossed lovers?
Oh, getting there.
Let's face it, Fred, at my age I should
really be playing the Nurse, not Juliet.
Or Carabosse.
Oh, God! Margot, you look younger every
year. You must give me the number, darling.
No, I just meant you
as the wicked fairy.
Tito...under your spell.
No more goodbyes, no more
getting left in the lurch.
I know it's taken
an absolute calamity
but you have finally got him
where you want him, haven't you?
I mean, he might even sit
through one of your performances.
How can you think...?!
Do you honestly imagine, Fred,
anyone would have chosen this?
I forget. After me.
Tito's consultant says, with his
paralysis, the only hope is muscle memory.
If you do something enough times,
your muscles just take over.
The body remembers it all.
Of course, heart is a muscle.
Rudolf, Tito has never adored me,
but he's never wanted me to adore him
either. Not the way that I want to.
I just want to give love.
Does that make sense?
And now I have the chance,
this has happened.
OK. Your choice. Hardly.
Yes, always.
It's like
taking Juliet away from Lynn.
That was nothing to do with me, you
know that! That was the board's decision.
So, you don't want to dance -
you don't want to dance Juliet?
You want to give younger girl the
chance to be a star, refuse. Your choice.
It's like you play with Tito -
at revolution in his country.
My country had a revolution.
I can never go back. I go back, they throw me
in prison, make me shit in a bucket until I die.
My life is real, always.
It's good, it's real.
It's bad, real.
My choice.
Thank you, Sister.
Hello, my darling. Mr Goodman is
very pleased with you, you know.
He thinks if you continue
with the physical... How long?
How long?
as long as it takes.
As long as I can put one foot in front of another,
I'll pay for you to have the best care possible.
It's bound to make a difference.
One day, the ranch by the sea.
BELL RINGS Always a bit
nerve-wracking, a first night.
Do you remember the first time
in New York, Sleeping Beauty?
I thought you were going to be
sick right there on the stage!
And you were the toast of the town.
Whatever they say about tonight...
Well, you just don't know, do you?
It doesn't matter.
Everything you've done, you've made
me the proudest mother in the world.
You really have.
You've been quoted as saying, "One should take
one's art absolutely seriously, but oneself, never."
Yes, I think that's
marvellous advice.
I can't claim it as mine, I'm afraid.
Someone said it to me,
a long, long time ago.
They were right, I think.
So you follow that advice?
You take your art
more seriously than yourself?
I hope so. Some might say that's a recipe for
wonderful art, but a less than wonderful life.
Surely, Dame Margot, one's life is the
thing one should take most seriously of all?
Full house, naturally.
How is foot?
You know, when Fred and Madam decided they
were going to make me dance leading roles...
I was terrified.
Not just that I wouldn't be able to
do the steps, or remember it all...
..but because there
was nothing inside me.
I didn't know a thing.
You were a child. Yes, but
no-one wanted that, did they?
They needed a prima ballerina.
So I thought, "I'll learn,
"I'll just copy.
"I'll do the steps and be Giselle
"and maybe then there'll
be something inside me.
"I'll come out
of the painted cottage...
"into the painted countryside
"and fall in love,
"and go mad,
"and die
"and come back as a spirit,
"and it'll all be real."
It still is.
It's the only thing
in my life that is -
Out there...
My choice.
Extract by ARS