Three observations about this clip from Billy Wilder‘s Sunset Boulevard (’50).
One, at the 52-second mark a boom microphone passes over Norma Desmond‘s head. Annoyed and a bit threatened, she gently swats it away. This could have been a minor bit, but Franz Waxman‘s musical cue (quietly shimmering strings) gives it dimension.
Two, it’s the film’s most emotionally touching scene because of the affection that Norma receives from the crew and some extras on the set of Cecil B. DeMille‘s Samson and Delilah (’49), which apparently was actually filming at the same time as Sunset Boulevard.
And three, DeMille puts in a call to Paramount propmaster Gordon Cole, and learns that Cole had been trying to get in touch with Desmond (or Eric von Stroheim‘s Max) in order to rent her Isotta-Fraschini convertible. Yes, Cole was a actual propmaster; he also worked on DeMille’s The Ten Commandments.
I never knew Cole was a real-life studio professional, and until today I never knew he was played in the film by an uncredited Bert Moorhouse. (Or at least, that’s what it says here.)