Back home, Norman goes to bed. Esther and Niles stands on
the balcony and talks about Norman.
Norman hear how Esther will give up
her career because of his drinking.
I love him she
declares. With the window open, Norman can hear them. She
says that she can't go on making pictures any longer, with
the way things are. There's nothing left of his talent, Niles
says. Twenty years of drinking do make a change to a man.
It wasn't just bad pictures, it was him!. Niles agrees
to her leaving the studio:
Goodbye Vicki Lester. Good luck,
mrs. Norman Maine
Norman hears all this with a pained expression on his face.
[Norman is looking at the ocean] He gets up and sees Esther
sitting on the balcony thinking to herself. He looks at the
ocean, then back at her.
Darling, you're up! she says
when she sees him.
As part of his new life, he is going to take a swim before
breakfast every day, he
says. He asks her to sing for her and while he goes down to the
beach she sings It's a New World. He goes out into the
water and drowns himself.
At the publicity department Libby is on the phone: |
is tragic, it's very tragic.
We see the frontpage of the Los Angeles Sun:
victim of accidental drowning. Libby goes on:
We had big
plans for him, he was all set for a come-back!
He clears his office except for his secretary, miss Willard.
This is the way the world really ends, in contrast
with the happy ends of movies, he says to himself.
Huge crowds of people have gathered outside the church. When
Esther comes out of the church, her calm fans becomes a frenzied
mob. Cameras are flashing and people are screaming. Esther breaks
At the studio, Libby is talking to Niles about Esther's future
plans. She doesn't answer phone calls, not even his. They enter
Norman Maine's studio apartment / dressing room. |
a lot not knowing Norman Maine.
I knew him
You didn't know him at all. He was quite a
At her home, Esther sits alone in front of the open fire. Danny
McQuire comes to pick her up for the benefit concert at the
Shrine she promised to attend. |
But that was before she
replies. She refuses to go with him, all she wants to do is sit
alone by herself. But Danny argues back. All Norman was proud of
was her success and now she's going to waste it. What would Norman
have said if he could see her now? She
agrees to go with him.
At the concert hall they walk through the dressing rooms
back stage. On one of the walls she sees the lipstick heart
Norman once draw with his and her names in it. On stage, the
MC first announce that Vicki Lester will not appear tonight,
but changes when he hears the news:
This is... mrs. Norman Maine!
Vicki Lester will appear
tonight! Here she is, ladies and gentlemen. A star that shines
bright and high!. The audience is applauding and the MC
asks her to say a few words to her fans all across the
Hello everybody. This is... mrs. Norman Maine
The audience rises and gives her another applaud. The camera
tracks out. The end.