Norma Desmond stands at the top of an extravagant staircase. The once-rapturous commotion from the barrage of policemen and gossipers that litter the actress’s mansion has ceased, leaving only Norma in an awkward silence as prepares to descend down the steps of her home and give one final, fabulous performance.

“What is the scene?” she asks the director, just before throwing out an even more troubling (and telling) question: “Where am I?”

“This is the staircase of the palace,” answers legendary filmmaker Cecil B. DeMille.

“Oh, yes…yes,” says Norma as a manic look cements itself on a face completely removed…

Travis Bean

Writer for Forbes | Founder of Colossus | Host of Your Brain on Film

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