Perry Mason: The Case of the Shooting Star (1986) Script

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(indistinct chatter nearby)


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WOMAN: Hey...


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(gun clicking)

(laughs)

Cut it.

MAN: Watch your backs, people, we're coming down.

Props?

What's the deal?

Sorry, Robert.

There's something wrong with this batch of blanks.

Okay, Suzy, print that, okay?

Ladies and gentlemen, that's a wrap.

We're gonna pick up the coverage from here on Friday night if we can find a blank that works.

(laughter)

All right.

MAN: All right, folks, that's a wrap.

Atmosphere, stop by.

Wardrobe, sign your vouchers.

Pick up a call sheet from Carol.

(indistinct chatter)

Thank you. That's a wrap.

Kate!

Hey, Kate!

Front and center, your director's here.

(laughter on television)

Well, speaking of Rick, here's the question that begs to be asked.

WOMAN: Yes, it does. How did he keep his rug on in those action sequences?

She's not here.

Ah, that much I can see.

She went back to the hotel about half an hour ago.

She wasn't feeling well.

She didn't tell me she wasn't feeling well.

Since when is telling you everything in her contract?

Since when is taking care of her wardrobe in yours?

She forgot some stuff.

She didn't forget, Eric.

She just didn't take it with her to wherever it is she really went.

She's at her hotel.

Eric, I can still smell the perfume she had on before she left.

Now, where is she?

You know, Eric, you're gonna keep crossing me and I swear the only careers you'll end up managing will belong to chimpanzees-- you understand that?

Where is she?

She went out to dinner.

Archer's.

She went out to dinner.

And it's good-bye time... Did you see, uh... did she go with him?

What do you think?

HOST (on TV): ...with tongues and their gleaming, and, uh...

Tomorrow night. Thank you, Donna Scott, for being with us.

(studio audience applauding)

Good evening.

I hope you enjoyed your meal.

Oh, yes, thank you.

Hello, John. Mr. McKay.

How are you? Very well, thank you.

Listen, uh, is, uh, is Kate Huntley here tonight?

Why, yes she is. Is she?

She's with Mr. Carr.

Shall I set another place? No, no, no.

No, that'll be fine.

Thank you very much.

You know, Robert makes me feel like I'm suffocating sometimes.

I know he doesn't mean to, but he, um...

Well, that's why sometimes it's good to step back and take a break.

No wonder they call this the Big Apple.

You never know when you're gonna run into a big worm.

Well, look who's here.

Come on, let's go.

What do you mean, "Come on, let's go?"

I heard you weren't feeling well, so I'm here

-to take you home, okay? Robert!

Look, uh, we're just two old friends having dinner.

Come on, sit down, join us.

Oh, you're two friends.

That's why you come over here and sneak behind my back?

Is that why?

I didn't want you to know where I was going because I knew this is how you'd react.

Well, we're getting out of here, and I'm not taking no for an answer-- come on.

Come on... come on... Hey, hey.

I thought you came to New York to play a detective, not a jackass.

Don't you have a wife somewhere? Come on.

Come on.

Mr. Carr! Mr. McKay! Mr. McKay!

Easy, Rob, you don't want that face in the morning papers.

Especially with a lump on it.

All right...

McKAY (on tape): I got news for you, lady.

I've been along for the ride all day.

This is where I get off.

WOMAN: Just give me a little more time...

McKAY: Hey, what do we have to do to get quiet around here?

I can't even hear myself think.

MAN: People, can I have quiet on the set?!

Thank you.

MAN 2: All right, work with us, people.

WOMAN (on tape): Gee... -(tire screeches)

Just what I thought.

Okay, folks, we got to go one more time.

Listen, get a new mic on her, okay?

And we'll go as soon as you get a level.

Honey, you were terrific, but your mic stunk, okay?

Can you give me one more just like that?

No problem.

Jerry, could you help me get this off?

Hey, Bobby? Yeah.

If I'm just gonna go again, how about if I cut in even closer this time?

Uh, okay, look, Ray.

Let me get back with you in just a second, okay?

Jed, big guy, how you doing?

Fine, Robert. How-how about yourself?

Look, I need a, uh, small favor.

Yeah? -I need to borrow a prop gun.

Oh, no... No, look... look, look, it's just for the night, okay?

Robert, those guns are supposed to be either locked up or in my sight at all times.

I-I could get fired, you know?

Jed, you're not gonna get fired.

I'm the director, okay? Look.

I'm gonna, I'm gonna shoot Steve Carr tonight, on his show.

JED: You're what?

With a blank, Jed.

I'm not gonna use real bullets.

What, do you think I'm crazy?

Look, it's a joke. You follow me?

I mean, it's-it's a set up thing between him and I.

Right there on live TV? Yeah, but look.

Now, the thing is-is see, you can't-you can't tell anybody, all right?

'Cause it's a secret. You understand?

You follow? I won't tell if you won't.

Okay. All right.

Thanks.

What time does the Carr show start again?

Uh, 11:00 tonight.

Okay, I'll be watching.

Okay. Okay, stand by, everyone.

First team, take your places.

We're ready for you, Robert.

Okay, Pete. Thanks a lot, Jed.

Okay.

All right, Pete, any time you're ready, I'm ready. All right, folks.

This'll be picture. We're going again, atmosphere.

MAN: We were so poor my folks couldn't afford to buy me any shoes.

They had to paint my feet black and lace up my toes.

Take two... and three.

My father and mother were so poor.

They couldn't afford to have children.

So the neighbors had me. There were five kids...

Okay, uh, Mel, get ready to cue Louie.

And, uh, two, zoom out and get ready to pick up Marty when he joins Steve.

And I thank you.

Hit the applause, and cue Louie.

And ready two and take two.

Three, stay right where you are.

One, back up, we're coming your way.

Ready one and... one!

Oh, it's your first time here and you're a very funny guy.

Thanks, Steve.

DIRECTOR: And ready two and... take two.

Okay, let's see if we can get in a subtle plug for you here.

I understand you're appearing the 12th through the 15th at the Melodyland Ballroom...

Hey, that's Robert McKay.

What's going on here?

DIRECTOR: Take three.

CARR: Well, I think you made us all a little nervous with that material.

Stay with him, three.

Full shot two and take two.

Well, if it isn't Robert McKay, ladies and gentlemen, crashing yet another party.

(audience screaming)

He shot him!

John, what's going on down there?

(all clamoring)

DIRECTOR: Come on, the music... get to the music!

All right, all right, put up a card!

All right, all right, I'm up.

Hit the music and applause.

Fade to graphic.

Go to commercial now!

Peter, move it!

We're clear.

(man clearing throat)

(indistinct chatter)

John?

Another drink, Mr. McKay?

Yeah, please.

Uh, what's, uh, what's going on?

What's the matter with everybody?

Well, someone has just shot Steve Carr.

Yeah, I know. I did.

As a joke.

A joke?

Yeah, he'll be here any minute.

He'll, uh, tell you all about it.

I don't think so.

He's just been admitted to Lexington General in critical condition.

Mr. McKay? Not right now.

Detective Harris. Homicide.

MASON: There was a trial, once, when the artist Whistler sued a man for libel about remarks he made concerning the fees Whistler charged for his paintings.

"Can you tell me," the opposing lawyer asked, "how long it took you to complete your painting?” Whistler replied, "Two days.”

"And you expect 200 guineas for your two days' work?"

"No... I expect it for the knowledge of a lifetime.”

(all laughing)

Which is another way of saying how important our law library is.

And if you think I've invited you here tonight to put undue pressure on you for a contribution, you're right.

(laughter, applause)

(indistinct conversation) MAN: Thank you very much.

Excuse me.

Excuse me.

Now, what's a beautiful woman like you doing alone?

(quiet laugh) I'm just relaxing.

How's fund-raising going?

Fairly well.

We're still short of the mark.

Thank you.

I hear you and Steve are separated.

It's been on and off for the last six months.

Mainly off.

How's Sharon?

I don't see her very much, unless, of course, I buy an issue of Vogue when she's on the cover.

Allison... are you all right?

I keep telling myself that it's over, that I should stop fighting it, that he let me go, so I should just let him go.

It's just that I...

I don't sleep very well at night, and sometimes, on weekends, I-I drink a little bit too much.

I don't have an occupation... and I have a husband that sometimes doesn't... call me back.

Other than that, I'm fine, really.

I'd like to help.

You already have.

(chuckles)

Come on, let's go back to the party.

Mother. Sharon...

Sharon, what are you doing?

Steve's been shot.

What?!

Where is he? Is he all right?

He's dead.

Thank you.

SIDNEY: Excuse me.

MASON: Come in.

Hello, Perry.

Good to see you, Sidney.

I ordered some coffee.

I could use some.

The redeye from L.A. is starting to get to me.

When we were in law school, you couldn't afford to go to the movies, much less produce them.

Sit down. Thank you.

I suppose you've read that Robert McKay was arrested.

Yes.

He's directing and starring in our picture with a budget of $30 million.

We're not a major studio, Perry.

If we shut this down-- and we'll have to, if we lose McKay-- it's a disaster for us.

So, uh... you want me represent him.

Immediately.

I was on the phone the entire flight out here.

The police charged him with murder less than five minutes after Carr died.

They would've looked like fools if they hadn't.

Perry, I've known Bob McKay for years.

Steve Car was his friend.

40 million people watched McKay commit murder.

Perry, I know you believe that, no matter what the circumstances, a person is entitled to the best possible legal defense.

That presents a problem.

Allison Carr has been a good friend for more than 20 years.

I'm not sure I could represent McKay.

Perry, as a personal favor to me, go and talk to McKay.

Just talk to him.

It was a joke.

It was, um, it was just a stupid joke.

Look, uh...

Steve and I patched things up at his apartment.

We had a couple drinks, and he got this idea about me coming onto his show, and we would fake a shooting.

Was anyone present during this discussion?

No. There was... No.

Did you tell anyone?

The only one that I, uh...

I told a prop man.

Did anyone have access to the gun?

I put the gun...

I put the gun in my glove compartment...

but I didn't lock it.

Can you explain how a round of live ammunition got into the gun?

No, I can't.

Mr. McKay, you just shot and killed a man on nationwide television, and you're going to ask the court to believe that someone put a live shell in your revolver?

Yes, I am.

You publicly fought with Carr the night before.

Why should we believe this story of yours?

Why?

Because it's true, that's why.

Well, that's not good enough!

Hey, wait a minute! I don't need you coming in here and telling me how bad this looks!

And I don't need you coming in here and putting me down!

I didn't murder Steve Carr, and I don't care if you believe that or not, because that's the truth!

Forget about me, Mr. McKay.

Why should anyone believe you didn't kill him?

'Cause he was my friend.

I'll see you at the bail hearing.

How could you do this?

I think he's innocent.

He killed Steve.

He pulled the trigger on the gun, but someone else could've put bullets in the gun.

I don't believe I'm hearing this.

How could you possibly defend that man?

I thought you were my friend.

Allison, I am your friend... but McKay deserves his day in court.

Get out.

Your Honor, this is a case in which the risk of flight is substantial, to say the least.

On the contrary, my client is under enormous pressure to complete a multimillion-dollar motion picture in New York.

Your points are well taken, gentlemen.

Bail will be set at, uh, $150,000 with a stipulation that Mr. McKay stay, at all times, within the municipal boundaries of New York City.

(bangs gavel)

Well, Counselor, we meet again.

That we do.

I would prefer a fair fight, but I must admit it's reassuring to know that I have 40 million eyewitnesses at my disposal.

(wry chuckle)

If you were going to kill someone, Mr. Reston, would you do it in front of 40 million people?

No, but then I'm not Robert McKay.

That's right. You're not.

Ray, what are you doing here? I'm just making sure the wheels of justice ain't running you over.

-(McKay scoffs) Are you okay, Bobby?

Well, I'm better than okay and I'm free as far as I know.

Excuse me. Mr. Mason?

This is my stunt coordinator Ray Anderson.

Ray, this is my attorney Perry Mason.

Hey, Perry.

Listen, next time you get an idea for a practical joke, you clear it with me, you got that?

Yeah, don't worry about it.

RAY: Of course, I thought it was gonna be pretty funny myself, but...

You knew about the joke beforehand?

Well, Well, Bobby was wearing a radio mic when he asked Jed to borrow the prop pistol.

You could hear him, plain as day, over by the mixer.

Did anyone else overhear this conversation?

Kate was standing right there.

If, uh, you'll excuse us, sir, Mr. McKay has bail money to arrange.

Right. But listen, Ray, thanks a lot.

Oh, sure. Listen, I'll see you on the set, good buddy.

Okay. Thank you.

That's good news.

I mean that's great. Now we can prove that shooting Steve was supposed to be a joke, right?

A strong case could be made that you wanted to be overheard to set up this murder.

Oh.

Look, who's to say you didn't switch the blank in that gun with the real bullet?

Although it does prove something...

What's that?

That at least two other people could have.

DRAKE: Hello, hello.

Hello, there.

(chuckles) When'd you get in?

Last night.

Well, well.

Well, I really didn't need anything quite this expensive.

Anything with a terrace would do.

Mm-hmm. We're using Perry's suite as our offices.

Uh, your room will be ready shortly.

Well, I guess we won't be here long.

You see an instant replay of the shooting every time you turn on the television set.

McKay did pull that trigger, but he thought he was firing a blank.

It was a joke for the audience.

Some joke. Mm-hmm.

Only someone switched that blank with a real bullet.

Do we seriously believe this?

MASON: We do.

Oh.

Who else knew about the joke?

The, uh, prop man who's working on the film Robert's making-- Jed Page-- and, uh, the stunt coordinator, Ray Anderson, and Kate Huntley.

MASON: They were all on location that day.

They all had access to the glove compartment of Robert's car, which is where the gun was stored.

Anybody on Steve Carr's side of it know about this joke?

I don't know that yet.

Even if they did, how would anyone know what kind of bullet to put in that gun?

McKay always uses a .357 Magnum in his movies.

It's his trademark.

I'm afraid Allison is in no mood to be helpful, but I'm going to try to see her again.

Paul, I'd like you to check out those people Della just mentioned.

Oh, by the way... nice to see you.

It was a, uh... tragic accident...

...and it was... it was a stupid thing for me to do.

And it was a very senseless way for a good friend to... to die.

But it's over and life goes on, I guess.

Now, on the advice of my attorney, that's all I, uh... that's all I can and will say about the shooting incident to anyone.

And as of today, this set will be closed to all media personnel.

The last thing we need to be doing is tripping over reporters every time we're trying to get a setup.

I mean, we're making a hit movie here, are we not?

CREW: Yes!

All right.

Oh, yeah. There's one more thing.

Uh, there's a guy here... he's somewhere... by the name of, uh, Paul Drake.

Paul?

Right here.

Right over here.

Um... not only is Paul a, uh, real honest-to-goodness private eye, but he's, uh... he's working very hard to clear me, so I-I would really appreciate any help you can give him.

Okay?

Let's make a movie, guys.

Mr. Page?

Yo.

DRAKE: Oh, hi.

The name's Paul Drake.

JED: Yeah. All right.

Boy, oh boy, you've got everything in here, don't you?

JED: Oh, you bet.

Let me ask you something.

Any ideas as to how a live round got into that gun that McKay used on Steve Carr?

It had a blank in when Robert put it in his car.

That's all I know.

But there's something else.

Robert McKay never would have killed Steve Carr on purpose.

Never.

Why?

'Cause they were friends?

Well, sure.

So, what you're saying is one of the film crew did it.

No, I never said that.

Look, this is family.

Everybody here loves Robert.

None of these people would do anything to hurt him.

The problem is maybe somebody did.

Wait a second.

Are you saying somebody here did this just to get Robert?

What if it wasn't Steve Carr they were out to get?

What if it was McKay?

It's a thought.

I hope I'm not making a mistake, letting you come by here.

I mean, you can't possibly justify what you're doing.

Of course I can.

Why are you here?

Sharon, I think we should listen to what he has to say.

Why?

MASON: Because I'm convinced McKay is innocent.

He's an actor.

He's supposed to be convincing.

They were friends for 20 years.

They fought, but they also played jokes on each other.

They were friends, Allison.

Now, be honest, both of you.

Do you really believe that Robert McKay would want to kill Steve?

I'm not sure.

MASON: Did Steve tell you Robert was going to pretend to shoot him?

No, I hadn't...

I hadn't spoken with him in at least two weeks.

Someone else he might have told?

Someone connected with his show?

That's possible.

Steve didn't leave anything up to chance.

MASON: Any ideas?

His producer?

Director?

What about girlfriend?

I wouldn't know.

Perry, I don't even know why she's talking to you.

I didn't do it.

Hey.

I didn't do it.

I want to believe you.

Why don't you try?

I didn't do it.

You gotta believe that.

And I love you very, very much.

Come on.

Okay, cut it and print it.

Okay, folks.

New setup across the street.

Kate, for God's sake, we gotta talk about this.

About the picture?

What's it to you?

Kate's a professional.

She's here to do a picture.

Is that what you want to talk about?

I want to talk about us.

You don't mind, do you?

Then I'm afraid she'll be in her trailer.

Robert, we're ready for the next setup, okay?

Yeah.

(trailer door shuts)

Yeah? Hi, I'm Paul Drake.

I'd like to speak with Kate.

Um, she's changing.

Well, that's all right, I'll wait.

I'm afraid it's gonna take her a while.

And after that, she's gonna study her lines.

And after that, she's got to go say them.

And after that, she's going to have to have lunch.

And after that, she has to study more lines, et cetera.

Just... what can I do for you?

I understand she overheard Robert telling the prop man what he was going to do to Steve Carr.

So?

Did she happen to tell anyone?

Just me.

No one else.

How can you be certain of that?

It's my job.

Tell Ms. Huntley I'll be back.

You know, um...

I'm afraid it's gonna be a waste of your time.

(sighs)

Carr was putting the moves on Kate, so McKay blew him away.

It's that simple.

I wish it were.

(McKay speaking indistinctly)


♪♪

Freeze!

(camera shutter snapping)

What did you think I was, some kind of urban guerrilla?

DRAKE: I didn't know what you were. -Thank you.

A detective is, uh, supposed to know these things, isn't he?

How do you know I'm a detective?

Mmm, just part of my job.

I'm a reporter.

For whom?

Does it matter?

Well, I suppose it was The New York Times, you'd tell me, right?

Your name is Paul Drake, and you've got a big problem.

What's that?

40 zillion people watched Robert McKay pull the trigger and you have to help Perry Mason defend him.

Michelle Benti. How do you do?

You still didn't tell me who you work for.

I don't see why that is so important.

Why is it such a secret?

It's not. I work for the, uh...

N-National Informer.

(grunts)

The Informer, like in "Cow in Indiana Glows in the Dark"?

Look, I'm a reporter and I'm covering a story and I just... think we can help each other out.

How is that?

Can't we... I mean, you've been thrown onto this set you know absolutely nothing about, and I think you have a little background information to catch up on.

Which you can fill me in on, of course.

Exactly.

So what do you think?

I think you should take that tape recorder out of your pocket and put it on the bench here, so I can see it.

My problem is I'm locked off that set.

I need a set of eyes and ears.

Which is where I come in. That's right.

Why should I do that?

Paul, I have dirt on everyone on that set.

I know why Eric Brenner hates Robert McKay.

I know why Ray Anderson pretends to be his friend.

I have an obligation to my client.

Just trying to make your job a little easier.

All right. Mm-hmm?

If something comes of the information you give me, then you'll be the first to know.

That's it?

That's it.

(chuckles)

Better than nothing, I suppose.

Okay, deal.

For now.

Sorry about that.

♪♪

MAN (over speaker): The stage is closed.

I'm going to have to ask you to leave.

I'm here concerning the death of Steve Carr.

Who are you?

Face-to-face, I'd be glad to tell you.

Thank you.

My name's Mason.

You're representing Robert McKay.

That's right. And you are...?

Peter Towne.

Good.

I understand you directed The Steve Carr Show.

I used to.

Just the way Steve Carr used to be alive.

If you're looking to help McKay, try someplace else.

All right. Superior Court with a subpoena.

Why don't you do that?

Mr. Towne, I'm only interested in ascertaining the facts.

Even Allison Carr cooperated.

(scoffs) I'll bet she did.

Steve's dead.

Now, Allison and that daughter of hers can get what they've been after all along: his money.

Did Steve tell you that?

Many times.

And now, I've told you, so your day shouldn't be a total loss.

It seldom is.

Roll camera!

MAN: Camera "A"!

McKAY: Hey, Ray, we're ready when you are.

Just give us a signal, okay?

Mr. Anderson!

Not now. I'm busy.

MAN: All right, people, we're rolling!

Why do I get the feeling you've been avoiding me all day?

Look, kid, I got a three-story backward fall to do here.

If I don't push off and land just right, I might break my neck.

Ray, here. The script supervisor says you got to wear this, okay?

Wait a minute. I didn't figure on an overcoat.

Raymond, what's the holdup? Are you ready?

Let's go. Can we go?

DRAKE: You know, the way I hear it, you should've changed jobs by now.

Didn't McKay offer you a shot at directing one of his pictures?

Only, for the last two years now, it's always been the next picture.

McKAY: Okay, we're rolling.

And action, Raymond!


Okay! All right.

Cut it, print it, and wrap it!

Thank you very much, ladies and gentlemen, for a great day's work. Good job, Ray.

Need a hand?

MAN: Get this stuff, guys. Let's go, let's go.

Hey, Ray?

Ray?

Ray?!

Okay, all right, all right, get back.

Get me a paramedic quick. Get him.

MAN: Let's get a paramedic in there!

Paramedic right now!

DRAKE: Mr. Anderson, are you all right?

You could've caused me a real problem up there, good buddy.

Let's not let it happen again.

Okay?

You made your point, good buddy.

Now take your hand off of my collar.

Thank you.

Hey, so was I, was I right about Brennan and Anderson or what?

Yeah, it looks that way.

Yeah?

Come on. Don't hold out on me, Paul.

I don't have anything.

Can we go somewhere and talk, maybe, you know?

Just tell me what he said.

Michelle, you'll get something when I'm ready!

I'm on a deadline.

So is McKay.

MAN: Okay, look back. Good, good.

Nice one... all right, come on, smile... smile, Sharon.

Come on. Good.

Nice, nice.

Okay.

All right, Tommy, go on the other side of her, would you?

Would you, Tommy?

Yeah, try one on the other side now.

Good, good.

I'm sorry. Excuse me, please.

MAN: Ah, all right. Take a break.

(sighs)

Mother told me I'm supposed to cooperate.

I brought you to this museum once.

You were very young.

I remember.

You've always been a very good friend.

My representing McKay doesn't change that.

(sighs)

I love my mother, Perry.

I don't care what she says. You're hurting her.

And believe me, she's been through quite enough.

Were you close to Steve Carr?

No.

Did you like him?

No, not particularly.

Why not?

Because of the way he treated my mother.

Does this really matter?

It might.

Did you talk to Carr the day he was murdered?

No... (sighs)

Look... when Steve married my mother, he made it very clear to me that he just didn't want to have me around.

So that's why I got shipped off to school in Europe.

Now, I was very angry at first, but I've come to realize that in the long run, he really did me a favor because that's where I got started in my modeling career.

Sharon... where were you between 3:00 and 6:00 the afternoon of the murder?

Why?

That's when the gun that killed Steve was left unattended in McKay's car.

I was with my mother.

I'm sorry I had to ask.

Yeah, you should be sorry.

DRAKE: And I learned that Ray Anderson has broken a few bones in the years he and McKay have worked together, and McKay has broken more than a few promises to him.

So, you think Anderson might have put the bullets in that gun in order to frame McKay.

Or Kate Huntley's manager Eric Brenner.

He's not all that fond of McKay himself.

I haven't been able to speak with Kate yet.

Kate?

So, Perry, where do we stand on Allison Carr?

She didn't know McKay and her husband had planned the fake shooting. At least that's what she said.

So, we don't rule her out?

No, we can't rule out anyone who might have known about that shooting.

Even her daughter?

Even her daughter.

McKay said his car was parked on the same street on which they're filming, so whoever armed that gun could've done it while McKay was occupied.

I'll buy that.

The editor, a fellow named Tommy, has arranged for you to see the footage of the film shot that day.

You know, Paul, there just might be something on that film.

I'll go over it the first thing in the morning.

No, no, they're expecting you in 20 minutes.

Twenty mi...?!

But it's...

All right.

You two have a nice dinner.

Tommy?

Tommy?


(clattering)

Hey!

(man yells)

MICHELLE: Hey, Drake.

He got away.

Not entirely.

Let me put it this way.

How soon can we see a print of that stolen footage?

Tomorrow morning.

Uh, you see, that's what I don't understand.

We keep all the negative stock in a vault, so why would he bother stealing that film, when all we have to do is make another print?

You see, I don't understand that.

I guess he was looking for the same thing we were, something incriminating on that film.

Which means we're on the right track.

Perry Mason, Della Street, Robert McKay, this is Michelle Benti.

Hi. How do you do?

Hello. know you.

You're a reporter.

At the moment, she's with me.

Perry, a picture of our thief.

Damn.

Recognize him?

Too bad.

He's our man.

Oh, this is great. This is just great.

I give you the biggest break that you have had so far in this case, and what do you give me? The boot!

Michelle, when I have something, you'll be the first to know, all right?

All right, maybe not the first, but you're going to be up there on the list, I promise, okay?

(knocking on door)

Hello.

Well, it's the honest-to-goodness P.I.

Mind if I ask you a few questions?

You can ask me a lot of questions.

They're not going to need me for a couple of hours.

Want some coffee?

No. Thank you.

Would you happen to know this gentleman?

Never seen him before, and I'm good at recognizing faces.

Hmm.

So much for that idea.

Tell me something.

Do you think Robert did it or not?

What?

Kill Steve Carr on purpose?

I don't think so.

Perry Mason doesn't think so.

Why? You think so?

I don't know.

The last time I saw those two together, they were at each other's throats.

Robert thought there was something going on between Steve and me.

He's the possessive type, huh?

He can be a real jerk.

But he can also be wonderful.

I always swore I would never, ever fall in love with an actor.

I guess that pretty much makes me the jerk, doesn't it?

(door opening)

Ah, so what are you doing here, besides bothering Miss Huntley?

He's not bothering me, Eric. We were just talking.

I was asking her if she recognized this gentleman.

Do you?

No.

Try looking at his face.

So I looked.

I still don't know him.

Now... if you'll excuse us.

Eric, you don't need to be rude.

No, that's all right. I can understand why he doesn't want you to talk.

I'm trying to help the man who'd like nothing better than to see him fired, man who thinks he's nothing but a two-bit hustler that you refuse to let go because you tend to be too loyal for your own good.

Get out of here.

Of course, let's not forgot McKay's in love with her.

When it comes to threats, that's the biggest one of all, isn't it, Eric? I think you better leave here... now.

And he has a temper, too.

Maybe even bad enough to put a bullet in a gun.

Hello, Mr. Towne.

Mr. Mason.

Somehow, I didn't expect to find you visiting Mrs. Carr.

Well, she asked if I'd help arrange the memorial dinner we're having for Steve tonight.

Since I wasn't busy, I said yes.

Would you, uh, look at this photo, please?

Okay, now what?

Do you recognize him?

Would it help McKay if I said yes?

Possibly.

Well, then it gives me great pleasure to say no.

I'm well aware that Peter Towne doesn't much care for me.

Then again, I don't think he much cares for anyone.

How long had Steve known him?

Well, they were college roommates.

Way back then, they swore that not only would they make it in show business, but they'd make it as a team.

And they did.

The only problem was that nobody knew that Peter's side of the team existed.

Thanks.

He was Steve's director, but not his partner or his friend.

Is that it?

Well, I don't know the details, but I do know that Steve was absolutely adamant that no one other than Peter direct his shows.

Was Peter allowed to work with anybody else?

Well, he got offers for specials, things like that.

But Steve always managed to make sure the deal fell through.

Do you know this man?

No, I don't.

Why?

He may be able to lead us to whoever switched that blank.

Allison, is Sharon working?

Yes, she is.

She said she was with you the afternoon of the murder.

Yeah.

We were shopping.

Am I to infer from that question that one or both of us are suspects?

I had to ask.

I guess I've never found a graceful way of doing it.

I'm sorry.

So am I.

Okay, Bobby, Bobby, the cameras are ready.

We've got to go now. Okay, all right, Pete.

We got the talkie in there?

All right, we're coming, we're coming.

All right, let's get out of here, guys, come on!

You again?

Get out.

All right, but before I do, I want you to take a look at something.

Get lost.

You know, you'd be a whole lot less suspicious if you were just a little bit more cooperative.

McKAY (over radio): All right, Ray, here we go.

And action.

You better buckle up, boy.

(tires screeching)

(car horn honks)

(horns blaring, tires screeching)

McKAY: And cut. Excellent.

Ray, the passenger was a great touch.

I love it.

Now, what was it you wanted me to take a look at, kid?

You ever seen this guy?

Nope.

Figures.

(chuckles)

All right, thank you.

You look terrible.

Oh, thank you.

So, did he, uh, did he recognize the photograph?

Michelle... (clears throat)

...how-how would you feel if you'd come inches from a cardiac arrest, your life passes before you in the blink of an eye, and-and somebody... runs up and asks for a story?

I'd say that they were, you know, totally insensitive.

You would? Yeah.

And I'd offer to take him somewhere and buy him a drink.

Really? Yeah.

Totally off the record.

All right.

You're buying. Sure.

Off the record.

Steve Carr was a man like any other man.

Only richer.

(laughter)

He loved life, and now that he's gone, we're all a little bit poorer.

In fact, uh, some of us are gonna be a lot poorer.

(chuckles)

But on a more serious note, most of you know that Steve and I went to college together.

We had big dreams, most of which came true.

Steve lived life fast and hard.

And if it was short, it sure was fun.

I miss you, Steve.

We all do.

Excuse me.

Hello, Sharon.

Your mother's arranged a very nice tribute.

Well, the guest list needs a little work, but on the whole, it's certainly more than he deserved.

Do you know this man?

No, I don't... and regardless of my feelings toward my stepfather, I really think it's a bit tacky of you to be on the job at a moment like this.

You'll really have to excuse me.

Any luck?

That's the man in the picture.

Excuse me.

Excuse me, please.

Excuse me.

Young man, may I talk with you a moment?

Young man?

Sir, sir.

Hey. Wait.

(man in distance speaks indistinctly)

You all right? Of course I'm all right.

I just wish I could have gotten a better hold on him.

What's wrong with your hand?

Nothing-- when I grabbed him, something came off on my hand-- makeup, green makeup.

Green makeup.

(tires screeching)

You all right?

I told you we were being followed.

What do you mean "we"?

All right.

Let's go again.

(Drake clears throat)

MAN (on film): All right! Slate!

MAN 2: Action!

I got news for you, lady, I've been along for the ride all day.

- This is where I get off. 4 told you...

What do you think, Paul? See something?

Well, nothing that would make me want to steal it.

And cut it.

You all right? Are you okay?

Um, could you just get me some ice, please?

Get me, get me the medic, please.

Thanks. You okay?

Well, if there's anything incriminating in this film, it's lost on me.

I'd say our mystery man was given a bum steer.

McKAY: Let me, uh, let me take a look.

DELLA: Will you look at this?

I think I have something.

At least one of us has.

Well, the makeup on that young man made me think that maybe, just maybe he was an actor.

I got this year's Players' Guide, and there he is.

MASON: Dak Foster.

Is there an address there?

No, but his agent's listed.

Okay, Paul, track him down.

(Drake barks)

(Della laughs)

I'd better; they're paying me big money.

CARR: Good, that'll make up for what you don't get here.

(Marty and audience laugh)

Were you a little nervous tonight?

MARTY: A little tense, you know, first time.

CARR: Well, if it isn't Robert McKay, ladies and gentlemen, crashing yet another party.

(audience screams)

MARTY: Oh, my God!

He, he, he shot him!

Somebody call an ambulance!

He shot Steve!

(theme music playing)

That was an excerpt of The Steve Carr Show that was broadcast the night of the murder.

Is that correct?

That is correct.

We collected it as evidence that same night.

I show People's Exhibit "A," which has been confirmed by ballistics tests to be the murder weapon.

Do you recognize that?

Yes, it has my marks on it.

RESTON: Where did you find this weapon?

HARRIS: Mr. McKay's car.

After you found it, did you examine it?

Yes.

Did you find... any blanks in this gun?

No, five live rounds and one expended one.

Thank you.

No further questions.

Your witness.

No questions.

You may step down.

I don't get it.

Why did he bring all that up?

Because he knew I would.

He must intend to discredit your story before I get the chance to present it.

RESTON: I call John P. Howell to the stand.

Mr. Howell, you are the maitre d' at Archer's restaurant.

Is that correct?

Yes, sir, that's correct.

Did you see Mr. McKay and Mr. Carr at the restaurant the night before the murder?

Yes, sir.

Did anything happen between them?

Well, they got into a fight.

RESTON: Fight-- you mean they were arguing?

HOWELL: No.

Mr. Carr hit Mr. McKay.

So you would say they appeared to be angry?

(chuckles) Well, yes.

Mr. Carr hit Mr. McKay and knocked him down.

Can you be sure they were angry?

Perhaps they were just joking.

MASON: Objection.

Calls for speculation.

Improper opinion.

Sustained.

No further questions.

Your witness.

Mr. Howell... your clarity in recalling certain events the night before Mr. Carr's death is remarkable.

Now, what about the night of his death?

Did you see Mr. McKay that night?

Oh, yes. I, um...

I showed him to a table.

About what time was that?

It was around 11:45.

Since The Steve Carr Show was broadcast live, that means Mr. McKay had just left the TV studio.

What did Mr. McKay say to you?

Well, he ordered a cocktail and then, uh, he ordered dinner, the, uh, burgundy duckling.

Your memory is remarkable.

Well, I remember because I told him it would take about a half an hour to prepare.

A half hour?

How did Mr. McKay respond?

He said that would be all right and that he was in no hurry.

So, how would you describe his mood, Mr. Howell?

Actually, he was, uh... he was quite pleasant, almost jovial.

Would you say he was in a joking mood?

Objection. Move to strike.

Relevancy. Sustained.

No further questions.

Y-You want me to give somebody else first crack at this kid?

Fine, he's just gonna be the next Tom Cruise.

Bozo.

(knocking)

It's open.

Mr. Freeman.

Here-- fill this out, put your 8x10s on it.

Do it out in the hall. I'll get back to you sometime.

I'm Paul Drake.

And I'm busy.

You didn't return my call, sol thought I would come down here

-and speak to you personally. I'm thrilled.

Now get out of here. Now, lookit, I took time out of a very hectic schedule to come down here and talk to you about using one of your actors in my new series.

Your-your new series?

New York Heat?

Oh, so you must be, uh... Paul Drake.

Yes, I'm sorry. My service didn't get the message to me.

I'll fire them first thing in the morning. Please, sit.

I'm-I'm sorry if I seemed rude, but... my analyst recently died.

You handle an actor by the name of Dak Foster.

Oh, yes. Fine boy.

Fine actor. Delight to work with.

I saw him in an off-Broadway play at one point.

I'm thinking about centering my new series around an unknown.

That's Dak.

How can I reach him?

Um, w-well, I'm afraid he's working.

I have to see him today. Unfortunately, I'm heading back to L.A. on a 6:00 flight.

I'm afraid I just, uh, can't reach him.

Mr. Drake, Michelle Benti, National Informer.

I was wondering, sir, if I could ask you

-just a few quick questions? What is going on?

Have you cast your series yet?

And what kind of talent have you found here in New York City?

Why don't you people leave me alone?

How did you find out I was here? Now, wait a second.

Did somebody in your agency tip her off? -No...

Is it true you're using one of Mr. Freeman's clients?

Look, Freeman, nobody treats me this way.

You want to publicize your agency?

All right. Come on, sweetheart.

I'm gonna give you a story about unethical practices.

No, I-I'm innocent! I'm ethical, I swear!

Then get rid of this person. Get out. Now.

Well, I was just... Now. Go. -Come on!

Sorry. It was a terrible misunderstanding.

You've been offensive, uncooperative and impolite.

I think I'll let myself out.

No, please! Wait! Here...

Uh, this is the address you'll find Dak at in Queens.

I'd take you myself, but... my car was stolen.

Mr. Freeman, thank you.

(clears throat) Got it.

Great, let's go. -Michelle, I can't take you with me.

(whistles) Taxi!

What-what do you mean?

Just what I said, I can't take you with me.

Paul, I'm having a little bit of trouble understanding this deal we have here.

It seems to me just a bit one-sided.

I mean, I get you a picture of Dak.

You use it to track down his agent.

I help you with him-- so what do I get?

Michelle, I'm investigating a murder.

I'm not covering a kidnapping by aliens in a UFO!

You and I had a deal and don't be so damn condescending.

I'm sorry. I didn't mean that. Taxi!

I-I can't take any more of this.

Michelle, this is just a story for you, is it not?

Is that what you think?

Paul, my editor is very hot for this story.

I deliver and I get a big fat bonus and maybe finally I'm able to leave that rag. What...

Do you think I like working for the Informer?

This story is my chance to look for something better.

Michelle, I like you and I would like to be able to help you... so come on, let's go.

Get in.

I'll probably regret this.

All right, Mr. Reston, what is all this about a surprise witness?

Your Honor, I have requested this recess to ask for your and Mr. Mason's indulgence because I wish to call an additional witness to the stand.

This morning I was under the impression Mr. Reston had called his last witness.

So was I.

And I hate surprises, Mr. Reston.

Your Honor, uh, this witness brought himself to the attention of my office less than an hour ago and, believe me, I was as surprised to hear that he wishes to testify as you are.

Just who is this witness?

Eric Brenner.

He was on location with the film crew the afternoon before the murder.

Should I wonder what further surprises you have in store for us, Mr. Reston?

Mr. Mason is entitled to be advised of all prosecution witnesses prior to trial, Mr. Reston.

I would've expected you to be above such behavior.

Your Honor, I am very sorry and I'm well aware of how this must look.

But I'm also convinced that this witness's testimony is very important to the People's case.

Mr. Mason, you have every right to a continuance, and I have every intention of granting you one.

Is that how you wish to proceed?

Your Honor, if Mr. Reston has a great need and wishes to put Mr. Eric Brenner on the stand, defense has no objection.

RESTON: And what did Mr. McKay do with the weapon after the prop man Mr. Page loaded it and gave it to him?

He put it in his car, in the glove compartment, and then he went back to reshooting the scene.

And did anyone go near the car after that?

No, not a soul, the whole rest of the afternoon.

Why are you so sure?

Because we spent the next three and a half hours on the same shot.

I, um... I spent the whole time right across the street from McKay's car.

So it was never out of your sight?

No, sir.

And no one went near it, let alone reach into the glove compartment to, say, exchange the alleged blank for a real bullet?

No, sir.

Thank you, Mr. Brenner.

That's all.

I have no questions.

But I would like to reserve the right to recall the witness.

All right, you may step down, Mr. Brenner.

Does that mean you've got something in mind?

Yep.

I think he smiles too much.

So, because Mr. McKay was wearing a radio mic, you could hear everything that he and the prop man Mr. Page were saying.

Every word.

And what were they saying, Ms. Huntley?

Well, basically, Robert was saying he needed to borrow a prop gun and Jed was saying no, he wasn't going to let him.

MASON: But Mr. Page changed his mind?

Once he found out why Robert wanted it.

Why did he want it?

So he could pretend to shoot Steve Carr on the show that evening.

As a joke.

A joke?

Robert was actually going to fire a blank.

He said he and Steve had it all planned.

Objection. Move to strike.

Hearsay.

Sustained.

Testimony is stricken.

Mr. McKay was well-known for his habit of playing practical jokes, was he not?

There's nothing Robert and Steve loved better than a good practical joke.

That's all, Ms. Huntley.

Thank you very much.

Your witness, Mr. Reston.

Had you worked with Robert McKay on any films prior to this one?

Yes, several.

During the making of those films did he have occasion to... wear a radio microphone?

Certainly. They're quite common, especially in action films.

RESTON: So he would be familiar with their operation?

Yes.

Can't we assume that he would be completely aware that anyone standing next to the sound mixer

-could overhear everything he said? -MASON: I object!

Calls for speculation on the part of the witness.

Calls for... complete conjecture.

Mr. Mason, if you don't mind, I'd like to answer the question.

MASON: Your Honor, I withdraw my objection.

You're saying that because someone is accustomed to wearing a wireless microphone, we should assume that person is aware that people are listening in.

Actually, quite the opposite is true.

I'm so used to radio mics that I usually forget I'm wearing one or that people can hear me.

Your Honor, I move to strike the witness's answer as non-responsive and withdraw the question.

Motion granted.

Ms. Huntley... how far away were you standing from Robert McKay when you overhead him talking about this joke?

I was across the street.

So you could see him?

Yes.

Was there any indication that he could see you?

He smiled at me.

Which means that he saw you standing next to the sound mixer and saw you listening.

That's all. No further questions.

None at all.

Robert.

DRAKE: Let's be quiet.

They might be shooting.

-(clatter) MAN: Quiet, damn it!

MICHELLE (whispers): They're shooting.

Oh, hell. Cut! Rick, get that thing out of there before it decapitates somebody.

Oh, get me a space blanket.

(sighs)

You! Over here. Me?

You. I want you to work.

Stand right over here.

Hold this...

...just about... there.

And don't let it down until I say cut.

Fine.

Okay, Rick. We've got fill.

Let's roll 'em. Take six.

(quietly): Do you know a Dak Foster?

Welcome to the wonderful world of low-budget filmmaking.

Where's Dak?

He's right over... there.

(thunder crackling)

(thunder crackling)

You directed The Steve Carr Show, did you not, Mr. Towne?

Yes, every night for 11 years.

So, you were directing the show the night he was shot?

TOWNE: That's right.

MASON: Mr. Towne, did you know Robert McKay was going to make an appearance on the show that night?

No, I did not.

Your Honor, I have a number of important questions to ask of this witness, but first...

I'd, uh, like to set up a demonstration recreating the events of the murder right here in the courtroom.

Wait a minute, Mason.

Exactly what kind of a three-ring circus are you proposing we run here?

What do you mean by "we?" -(gallery murmurs, gavel bangs)

So far, we've been subjected to your low, juggling, carnival approach.

JUDGE: Order! Now we want to continue on...

What exactly do you mean by "we?"

(gavel banging)

Just one minute, both of you.

Step up here.

(gallery murmuring)

You gentlemen are forgetting something here.

I make the arrangements here.

I make the rulings, and I make the observations.

Now, if what you're suggesting, Mr. Mason, is a motion for me to decide, why don't you make one?

Your Honor, it is extremely important that the defense be allowed to demonstrate the actual circumstances of the crime.

We're sure that the prosecution would have no objection to our search for the truth.

We did not object when Mr. Reston suddenly wanted Eric Brenner put on the stand.

Your Honor, I submit that that was a different case.

Perhaps the esteemed counsel for the defense was so amenable at the point because he already had this little trick in mind.

Perhaps.

All right, let's put an end to all this.

Mr. Mason, if you're representing that this is important to your case, I'll grant the request.

I am, Your Honor.

That'll be the order.

(gavel bangs)

MAN: Cut!

That wasn't bad, was it?

Loved it. -(Dak laughs)

MAN: All right, 30 minutes now.

And that's all, because if we don't get the next shot by then, we're not gonna get the next shot, and the producer's gonna pull the plug, and you know what's gonna happen to all those back salaries of yours.

So, let's go, let's move it, okay?

How you doing? I'm Paul Drake.

This is my girlfriend Michelle Benti.

Dak Foster. Hi! How are you?

Fine. Do I know you?

I don't think so.

Where, uh... where are you guys from?

California.

Oh, maybe I met you out there.

What do you guys do?

Uh, we're actors.

Unemployed right now.

Lots of that going around.

Yeah, well, we heard you were making a movie here, and we thought maybe we could hustle a little work.

There's work, no money.

And it's not exactly the kind of credit you'd want to put at the top of your bio, either.

Well, thank God for makeup, huh?

So what about the, uh... the Robert McKay shoot?

What about it?

Any work there?

I wouldn't know.

MAN: What do you mean, he's not here?

We have to shoot the scene where he kills the vampire now before they kick us out of here!

It's the damn finale!

What's the monster supposed to do, keel over and die of a heart attack?

What?

What, Gordon didn't show up?

He must have got that soap he was up for-- damn!

Hey, Ron, my, uh, friend here's an actor.

Why don't you use him?

No, that's, uh... Yeah. Yeah, that's an idea.

We can... we can slap a wig on him. -That's fine.

We can do some weird angle, deep shadow stuff... -Right.

Girls? I'm just down here to watch.

That's okay. -RON: Get this guy in wardrobe, okay? Come here.

DRAKE: No, no, no, really, I can't.

I can't.

Listen, I got three weeks' worth of back pay that says you better, mister.

(laughs)

Now, as you can see, this area represents Steve Carr and his guest.

And here we have the curtain where Mr. McKay made his entrance.

Is that clear? Yes.

Now, those three X's represent the three cameras you used to tape The Steve Carr Show.

If you would step down out of the witness box, I'd like you to explain to the court exactly how you used them.

Step down.

The first X represents camera one.

What was it focused on?

Camera one holds Steve Carr in a close-up.

All the time?

Yes.

Now, that position there-- what was it used for?

Camera two is used for a wider two-shot of Steve and his guest.

MASON: Did, uh, that ever vary?

No.

And camera three?

Camera three is called the swing camera.

If someone performs or makes an appearance, it will hold the person from the curtain and then carry them all the way to their seat.

Once the guest was seated, how was it used?

TOWNE: It would then hold the guest in a close-up.

MASON: And that was your normal procedure?

I did it that way for 11 years.

Then I can assume, since Steve Carr's guest was already seated when Robert McKay came through the curtain, that camera one was a close-up of Mr. Carr, camera two was a two-shot of Mr. Carr and his guest, and camera three was a close-up of the guest.

That's what you said, isn't it?

Yes. Good.

Now, let's look at the tape. Bailiff?

(theme song playing)

Welcome, Marty, welcome. All right.

Nice job. Thank you.

MASON: Now that is camera two.

Oh, Steve, you're too kind. No, it's your first time here.

MASON: And that would be camera three. -Thanks, Steve.

(laughs) Coming from you, that means something.

Not much, but something. MASON: Back to camera two.

Okay, let's see if we can get in a subtle plug for you.

Great. -Here, I understand you're appearing the 12th through the 15th at the Melodyland Ballroom.

I'd better. They're paying me big money.

CARR: Were you a little nervous tonight?

Freeze it, please. MARTY: Mm-hmm.

MASON: Now, Mr. Towne, which one of these three cameras was taping Mr. McKay?

How did any one of them anticipate Mr. McKay's entrance?

Isn't it true it would be physically impossible for any one of them to swing over in time to catch his unexpected entrance through the curtain?

Well, you see, um...

(sighs)

Yes.

(gallery murmuring)

(gavel bangs)

JUDGE: Order.

Order! -(gavel banging)

(gallery quiets)

Isn't it true you would have to have had camera three in position to get that shot?

Yes.

MASON: Isn't it true you knew Robert McKay was going to make an appearance on the show that night?

(sighs) Yeah, yeah.

Steve, uh... Steve told me that Robert McKay would be on the show.

He told me about the gun, the joke, everything.

You may return to the stand, Mr. Towne.

You were very close to Steve Carr, were you not?

Yes, very close.

Isn't it true that you were recently offered an important directing assignment in Los Angeles?

Yes.

Isn't it true that Steve Carr prevented you from accepting that assignment?

We were having a contract dispute.

MASON: Which he won.

Yes.

How did you feel about that?

TOWNE: I didn't like it.

One more question.

How would you characterize him when he told you Mr. McKay was going to be on the show?

Did he seem frightened, apprehensive?

No.

Isn't it true that you lied about that because you didn't want to be suspected of putting that live ammunition in Robert McKay's gun?

Mr. Towne, isn't it true you lied about that?

(quietly): Yes.

Thank you.

No further questions.

JUDGE: Mr. Reston?

Mr. Towne... as fond as you were of Steve Carr, and, uh, being familiar with the stormy friendship with Mr. McKay, weren't you apprehensive when you heard that McKay was going to appear on the show, carrying a gun?

Yes, in fact, I was.

Yes, I should think so.

Thank you.

JUDGE: Witness may step down.

Court will recess until this afternoon at 2:30.

(gavel bangs)

Uh, Your Honor, defense would like an one-hour extension to examine new evidence.

We can do better than that, Mr. Mason.

Court will adjourn until tomorrow morning at 10:00 a.m.

(gavel bangs, gallery murmuring)

What new evidence?

Robert... how many cameras are used when you're shooting a scene?

Well, we use one, two, sometimes more if, uh... if we're shooting a stunt.

A stunt? McKAY: Uh-huh.

That's what you were doing all the while that gun was in your car-- shooting a stunt.

Yes, I have it, thank you.

This isn't the same film we saw before.

Well, it's the same scene shot by a second camera in slow motion.

With the film that was stolen?

It would have been, if Dak Foster had known there was a second camera.

DELLA: Well, I don't see anything incriminating in this one, either.

Robert, could we look at that again?

Just the last part.

Sure. Why? You see something?

Yup.

Della, where's Paul?

Oh, that was Paul on the phone.

(rips paper off pad)

LEE: Okay, Paul, you ready for a take?

Yeah. MAN: Stand by, please.

All right, this is it.

MOS. Let's roll 'em.

And action!

(camera shutter clicks)

See if you can catch me now. -(grunts)

(grunting)

Why did you steal that film?

(yelling)

(grunting)

(yells)

(grunts)

(panting)

That him, Paul?

Oh, yes.

DRAKE: I know you stole that film out of Robert McKay's editing room.

I just want to know who sent you.

Mr. Brenner, would you please describe for the court what happened in the scene they were shooting that afternoon during the time Robert McKay's car was not out of your sight.

Sure.

It was a... a stunt in which the car tries to run over the characters that Robert and Kate play.

They roll out of the way, it bangs into a parked car and drives off.

MASON: Did it involve using doubles?

Wasn't necessary.

It was a fairly minor stunt.

And in the course of this minor stunt...

Ms. Huntley suffered a minor injury, is that correct?

BRENNER: She hurt her ankle during one of the takes.

She was treated by the nurse on the set, Mrs. Brenda Saunders, is that correct?

As a matter of fact, she was.

Mrs. Saunders... would you please stand?

Now, you insisted on carrying Ms. Huntley over to the nurse, is that correct, Mr. Brenner?

Yes.

Thank you.

And you insisted on staying with Ms. Huntley while the nurse applied ice to her ankle, a process which took over five minutes, is that correct, Mr. Brenner?

Yes.

And you still contend that not once, not once during that time... did you take your eyes off Robert McKay's car?

Of course I took my eyes off it, but only for a moment.

Over five minutes, Mr. Brenner.

Over five minutes.

Over five long minutes.

That's all, sir.

JUDGE: You may step down, Mr. Brenner.

I call Mr. Joseph DeVito to the stand.

Now, this is the footage you shot when you were operating the second camera that day, Mr. DeVito, is that correct?

Uh, yes, sir, that is correct.

Mr. DeVito... who are these people?

Uh, just spectators. You know, people who come down because they, uh, want to see how a movie's shot, I guess.

When I had this footage transferred onto tape, I had them enlarge this frame, because there's something peculiar about one of those people.

DeVITO: Yeah, I see what you mean.

Everyone seems to be facing forward except for that one person right there.

MASON: Yes, that person has turned away.

Now, look closely.

What do you see?

Uh, just that it's a woman.

MASON: Mr. DeVito... Stop.

You don't have to go any further.

I did it.

(gallery murmuring)

-(gavel banging) JUDGE: Order!

Any further demonstrations of this sort, and I will have this courtroom cleared.

I took the blank from the gun and I replaced it with a real bullet.

Your Honor... MASON: Your Honor...

I call Allison Carr to the stand.

Mrs. Carr... did you kill your husband?

Yes, I did.

You went to the movie set where Robert McKay was filming and put a live round of ammunition in his revolver.

Yes, I did.

Why did you kill your husband?

Because I hated him.

Why did you hate him?

Do you want us to believe it was because you wanted a divorce and he was unwilling to give you a satisfactory financial settlement?

ALLISON: Yes.

MASON: Do you want us to believe it was because he was worth more to you dead than alive?

ALLISON: Yes.

And then you'd inherit all his money.

ALLISON: Yes.

MASON: Is that the real motive for this murder?

Mrs. Carr... are you aware that the penalty for premeditated murder under circumstances such as these is punishable by life imprisonment?

Am. And that if you are convicted, you may spend the greater part of your life in prison?

SHARON (whispers): Please stop this.

She's trying to protect me.

(Sharon sighs)

You know I did it, don't you?

Yes.

And you know I'm gonna have to put you on the stand.

(sighs)

MASON: Your Honor... at this time I call Sharon Loring.

I first met Steve Carr when I was 17... when he married my mother.

On the day of the wedding, he tried to seduce me.

He tried several times after that, which is... why I decided to go to school in Europe.

To get away.

Did you tell your mother?

No, I never told her.

I didn't want to hurt her.

MASON: When was the last time you saw Steve Carr?

On the day that he was murdered, he called and he asked me to lunch.

I didn't want to go, but he said that, uh... he wanted to make up for the past, that... he wanted to help me with my career.

So when I got to his apartment... (sighs) he was laughing about the stunt that he was going to pull on the show.

And that's when he told me about Robert McKay.

Then what happened?

He tried to seduce me again.

Except this time he wasn't gonna take no for an answer.

He, uh... he hit me and he tore up my clothes.

And I fought back.

But then he said that i-if I didn't come across, that he would tell my mother that we'd done it anyway and that she'd think I was a tramp.

So I ran away.

What did you do... when you left the apartment?

SHARON: I walked around for a while, and then...

I went to the movie set.

I-I can't remember how I got there.

But I stayed in the crowd and then I s-saw Robert McKay put the prop gun in the glove compartment.

So I went to the store and I bought some real bullets.

And then, when everybody was taking care of Kate Huntley, I exchanged the blanks for real bullets.

Miss Loring... why are you stepping forward at this time?

When you showed my mother the picture of my boyfriend, Dak... she came to me and I told her everything.

Today she's trying to protect me, and I can't let her do that.

(crying): Steve Carr ruined my mother's life.

I killed him, and I'm not sorry that I did.

(clears throat)

Well, this has been a most involved matter, but the truth seems to have become self-evident.

The court will entertain a motion, gentlemen.

MASON: Mr. Reston?

Your Honor, the People move for a dismissal.

Case dismissed. -(bangs gavel)

(sighs)

DRAKE: Well, you finally got your story.

I sure did.

And what do you get? An evening with you.

That'll be my story. Uh-huh.

And for once... it'll just be the two of us.

Thank you.

You ready?