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  N O T T I N G   H I L L

  Screenplay by Richard Curtis

  --------------------------------------------------------------


  Title

  EXT. VARIOUS DAYS

  'She' plays through the credits.

  Exquisite footage of Anna Scott -- the great movie star of our
  time -- an ideal -- the perfect star and woman -- her life full of
  glamour and sophistication and mystery.

  EXT. STREET - DAY

  Mix through to William, 35, relaxed, pleasant, informal.  We
  follow him as he walks down Portobello Road, carrying a load of
  bread.  It is spring.

        WILLIAM (V.O.)
    Of course, I've seen her films and
    always thought she was, well,
    fabulous -- but, you know,
    million miles from the world I live
    in.  Which is here -- Notting Hill
    -- not a bad place to be...

  EXT. PORTOBELLO ROAD - DAY

  It's a full fruit market day.

        WILLIAM (V.O.)
    There's the market on weekdays,
    selling every fruit and vegetable
    known to man...

  EXT. PORTOBELLO ROAD - DAY

  A man in denims exits the tattoo studio.

        WILLIAM (V.O.)
    The tattoo parlour -- with a guy
    outside who got drunk and now can't
    remember why he chose 'I Love Ken'...

  EXT. PORTOBELLO ROAD - DAY

        WILLIAM (V.O.)
    The racial hair-dressers where
    everyone comes out looking like the
    Cookie Monster, whether they like
    it or not...

  Sure enough, a girl exits with a huge threaded blue bouffant.

  EXT. PORTOBELLO ROAD - SATURDAY

        WILLIAM (V.O.)
    Then suddenly it's the weekend, and
    from break of day, hundreds of stalls
    appears out of nowhere, filling
    Portobello Road right up to Notting
    Hill Gate...

  A frantic crowded Portobello market.

        WILLIAM (V.O.)
    ... and thousands of people buy
    millions of antiques, some genuine...

  The camera finally settles on a stall selling beautiful stained
  glass windows of various sizes, some featuring biblical scenes
  and saints.

        WILLIAM (V.O.)
    ... and some not so genuine.

  EXT. GOLBORNE ROAD - DAY

        WILLIAM (V.O.)
    And what's great is that lots of
    friends have ended up in this part of
    London -- that's Tony, architect
    turned chef, who recently invested
    all the money he ever earned in a new
    restaurant...

  Shot of Tony proudly setting out a board outside his restaurant,
  the sign still being painted.  He receives and approves a huge
  fresh salmon.

  EXT. PORTOBELLO ROAD - DAY

        WILLIAM (V.O.)
    So this is where I spend my days
    and years -- in this small village in
    the middle of a city -- in a house
    with a blue door that my wife and I
    bought together... before she left
    me for a man who looked like Harrison
    Ford, only even handsomer...

  We arrive outside his blue-doored house just off Portobello.

        WILLIAM (V.O.)
    ... and where I now lead a strange
    half-life with a lodger called...

  INT. WILLIAM'S HOUSE - DAY

        WILLIAM
    Spike!

  The house has far too many things in it.  Definitely two-
  bachelor flat.

  Spike appears.  An unusual looking fellow.  He has unusual
  hair, unusual facial hair and an unusual Welsh accent: very
  white, as though his flesh has never seen the sun.  He wears
  only shorts.

        SPIKE
    Even he.  Hey, you couldn't help me
    with an incredibly important
    decision, could you?

        WILLIAM
    This is important in comparison to,
    let's say, whether they should
    cancel third world debt?

        SPIKE
    That's right -- I'm at last going out
    on a date with the great Janine and I
    just want to be sure I've picked the
    right t-shirt.

        WILLIAM
    What are the choices?

        SPIKE
    Well... wait for it...
      (He pulls on a t-shirt)
    First there's this one...

  The t-shirt is white with a horrible looking plastic alien
  coming out of it, jaws open, blood everywhere.  It says 'I Love
  Blood.'

        WILLIAM
    Yes -- might make it hard to strike a
    really romantic note.

        SPIKE
    Point taken.

  He heads back up the stairs... talks as he changes...

        SPIKE
    I suspect you'll prefer the next one.

  And he re-enters in a white t-shirt, with a large arrow,
  pointing down to his flies, saying, 'Get It Here.'

        SPIKE
    Cool, huh?

        WILLIAM
    Yes -- she might think you don't have
    true love on your mind.

        SPIKE
    Wouldn't want that...
      (and back up he goes)
    Okay -- just one more.

  He comes down wearing it.  Lots of hearts, saying, 'You're the
  most beautiful woman in the world.'

        WILLIAM
    Well, yes, that's perfect. Well
    done.

        SPIKE
    Thanks.  Great.  Wish me luck.

        WILLIAM
    Good luck.

  Spike turns and walks upstairs proudly.  Revealing that on the
  back of the t-shirt, also printed in big letters, is written
  'Fancy a fuck?'

  EXT. PORTOBELLO ROAD - DAY

        WILLIAM (V.O.)
    And so it was just another hopeless
    Wednesday, as I set off through the
    market to work, little suspecting
    that this was the day which would
    change my life forever.  This is
    work, by the way, my little travel
    book shop...

  A small unpretentious store... named 'The Travel Book Co.'

        WILLIAM (V.O.)
    ... which, well, sells travel books
    -- and, to be frank with you, doesn't
    always sell many of those.

  William enters.

  INT. THE BOOKSHOP - DAY

  It is a small shop, slightly chaotic, bookshelves everywhere,
  with little secret bits round corners with even more books.
  Martin, William's sole employee, is waiting enthusiastically.
  He is very keen, an uncrushable optimist.  Perhaps without
  cause.  A few seconds later, William stands gloomily behind the
  desk.

        WILLIAM
    Classic.  Absolutely classic.
    Profit from major sales push -- minus
    £347.

        MARTIN
    Shall I go get a cappuccino?  Ease the
    pain.

        WILLIAM
    Yes, better get me a half.  All I can
    afford.

        MARIN
    I get your logic.  Demi-capu coming up.

  He salutes and bolts out the door -- as he does, a woman walks in.
  We only just glimpse her.

  Cut to William working.  He looks up casually.  And sees
  something.  His reaction is hard to read.  After a pause...

        WILLIAM
    Can I help you?

  It is Anna Scott, the biggest movie star in the world -- here --
  in his shop.  The most divine, subtle, beautiful woman on earth.
  When she speaks she is very self-assured and self-contained.

        ANNA
    No, thanks.  I'll just look around.

        WILLIAM
    Fine.

  She wanders over to a shelf as he watches her -- and picks out a
  quite smart coffee table book.

        WILLIAM
    That book's really not good -- just
    in case, you know, browsing turned to
    buying.  You'd be wasting your money.

        ANNA
    Really?

        WILLIAM
    Yes.  This one though is... very
    good.

  He picks up a book on the counter.

        WILLIAM
    I think the man who wrote it has
    actually been to Turkey, which helps.
    There's also a very amusing incident
    with a kebab.

        ANNA
    Thanks.  I'll think about it.

  William suddenly spies something odd on the small TV monitor
  beside him.

        WILLIAM
    If you could just give me a second.

  Her eyes follow him as he moves toward the back of the shop and
  approaches a man in slightly ill-fitting clothes.

        WILLIAM
    Excuse me.

        THIEF
    Yes.

        WILLIAM
    Bad news.

        THIEF
    What?

        WILLIAM
    We've got a security camera in this
    bit of the shop.

        THIEF
    So?

        WILLIAM
    So, I saw you put that book down your
    trousers.

        THIEF
    What book?

        WILLIAM
    The one down your trousers.

        THIEF
    I haven't got a book down my trousers.

        WILLIAM
    Right -- well, then we have something
    of an impasse.  I tell you what --
    I'll call the police -- and,  what can
    I say? -- If I'm wrong about the whole
    book-down-the-trousers scenario, I
    really apologize.

        THIEF
    Okay -- what if I did have a book down
    my trousers?

        WILLIAM
    Well, ideally, when I went back to
    the desk, you'd remove the Cadogan
    guide to Bali from your trousers, and
    either wipe it and put it back, or
    buy it.  See you in a sec.

  He returns to his desk.  In the monitor we just glimpse, as does
  William, the book coming out of the trousers and put back on the
  shelves.  The thief drifts out towards the door.  Anna, who has
  observed all this, is looking at a blue book on the counter.

        WILLIAM
    Sorry about that...

        ANNA
    No, that's fine.  I was going to
    steal one myself but now I've changed
    my mind.  Signed by the author, I see.

        WILLIAM
    Yes, we couldn't stop him.  If you
    can find an unsigned copy, it's
    worth an absolute fortune.

  She smiles.  Suddenly the thief is there.

        THIEF
    Excuse me.

        ANNA
    Yes.

        THIEF
    Can I have your autograph?

        ANNA
    What's your name?

        THIEF
    Rufus.

  She signs his scruffy piece of paper.  He tries to read it.

        THIEF
    What does it say?

        ANNA
    Well, that's the signature -- and
    above, it says 'Dear Rufus -- you
    belong in jail.'

        THIEF
    Nice one.  Would you like my phone
    number?

        ANNA
    Tempting but... no, thank you.

  Thief leaves.

        ANNA
    I think I will try this one.

  She hands William a £20 note and the book he said was rubbish.
  He talks as he handles the transaction.

        WILLIAM
    Oh -- right -- on second thoughts
    maybe it wasn't that bad.  Actually
    -- it's a sort of masterpiece really.
    None of those childish kebab
    stories you get in so many travel
    books these days.  And I'll throw in
    one of these for free.

  He drops in one of the signed books.

        WILLIAM
    Very useful for lighting fires,
    wrapping fish, that sort of things.

  She looks at him with a slight smile.

        ANNA
    Thanks.

  And leaves.  She's out of his life forever.  William is a little
  dazed.  Seconds later Martin comes back in.

        MARTIN
    Cappuccino as ordered.

        WILLIAM
    Thanks.  I don't think you'll believe
    who was just in here.

        MARTIN
    Who?  Someone famous?

  But William's innate natural English discretion takes over.

        WILLIAM
    No. No-one -- no-one.

  They set about drinking their coffees.

        MARTIN
    Would be exciting if someone famous
    did come into the shop though,
    wouldn't it?  Do you know -- this is
    pretty incredible actually -- I once
    saw Ringo Starr.  Or at least I think
    it was Ringo.  It might have been
    that broke from 'Fiddler On The Roof,'
    Toppy.

        WILLIAM
    Topol.

        MARTIN
    That's right -- Topol.

        WILLIAM
    But Ringo Starr doesn't look
    anything like Topol.

        MARTIN
    No, well... he was quite a long way
    away.

        WILLIAM
    So it could have been neither of them?

        MARTIN
    I suppose so.

        WILLIAM
    Right.  It's not a classic anecdotes,
    is it?

        MARTIN
    Not classic, no.

  Martin shakes his head.  William drains his cappuccino.


        WILLIAM
    Right -- want another one?

        MARTIN
    Yes.  No, wait -- let's go crazy --
    I'll have an orange juice.

  EXT. PORTOBELLO ROAD - DAY

  William sets off.

  INT. COFFEE SHOP - DAY

  William collects his juice in a coffee shop on Westbourne Park
  Road.

  EXT. PORTOBELLO ROAD - DAY

  William swings out of the little shop -- he turns the corner of
  Portobello Road and bumps straight into Anna.  The orange
  juice,  in its foam cup, flies.  It soaks Anna.

        ANNA
    Oh Jesus.

        WILLIAM
    Here, let me help.

  He grabs some paper napkins and starts to clean it off -- getting
  far too near her breasts in the panic of it...

        ANNA
    What are you doing?!

  He jumps back.

        WILLIAM
    Nothing, nothing... Look, I live just
    over the street -- you could get
    cleaned up.

        ANNA
    No thank you.  I need to get my car
    back.

        WILLIAM
    I also have a phone.  I'm confident
    that in five minutes we can have you
    spick and span and back on the street
    again... in the non-prostitute sense
    obviously.

  In his diffident way, he is confident, despite her being
  genuinely annoyed.  She turns and looks at him.

        ANNA
    Okay.  So what does 'just over the
    street' mean -- give it to me in yards.

        WILLIAM
    Eighteen yards.  That's my house
    there.

  He doesn't lie -- it is eighteen yards away.  She looks down.
  She looks up at him.

  INT. WILLIAM'S HOUSE - CORRIDOR - DAY

  They enter.  She carries a few stylish bags.

        WILLIAM
    Come on in.  I'll just...

  William runs in further -- it's a mess.  He kicks some old shoes
  under the stairs, bins an unfinished pizza and hides a plate of
  breakfast in a cupboard.  She enters the kitchen.

        WILLIAM
    It's not that tidy, I fear.

  And he guides her up the stairs, after taking the bag of books
  from her...

        WILLIAM
    The bathroom is right at the top of
    the stairs and there's a phone on the
    desk up there.

  She heads upstairs.

  INT. KITCHEN - DAY

  William is tidying up frantically.  Then he hears Anna's feet on
  the stairs.  She walks down, wearing a short, sparkling black
  top beneath her leather jacket.  With her trainers still on.  He
  is dazzled by the sight of her.

        WILLIAM
    Would you like a cup of tea before
    you go?

        ANNA
    No thanks.

        WILLIAM
    Coffee?

        ANNA
    No.

        WILLIAM
    Orange juice -- probably not.

  He moves to his very empty fridge -- and offers its only contents.

        WILLIAM
    Something else cold -- coke, water,
    some disgusting sugary drink
    pretending to have something to do
    with fruits of the forest?

        ANNA
    Really, no.

        WILLIAM
    Would you like something to nibble --
    apricots, soaked in honey -- quite
    why, no one knows -- because it stops
    them tasting of apricots, and makes
    them taste like honey, and if you
    wanted honey, you'd just buy honey,
    instead of apricots, but nevertheless
    -- there we go -- yours if you want
    them.

        ANNA
    No.

        WILLIAM
    Do you always say 'no' to everything?

  Pause.  She looks at him deep.

        ANNA
    No.
      (pause)
    I better be going.  Thanks for your
    help.

        WILLIAM
    You're welcome and, may I also say...
    heavenly.

  It has taken a lot to get this out loud.  He is not a smooth-
  talking man.

        WILLIAM
    Take my one chance to say it.  After
    you've read that terrible book,
    you're certainly not going to be
    coming back to the shop.

  She smiles.  She's cool.

        ANNA
    Thank you.

        WILLIAM
    Yes.  Well.  My pleasure.

  He guides her towards the door.

        WILLIAM
    Nice to meet you.  Surreal but nice.

  In a slightly awkward moment, he shows her out the door.  He
  closes the door and shakes his head in wonder.  Then...

        WILLIAM
    'Surreal but nice.'  What was I
    thinking?

  ... He  shakes his head again in horror and wanders back along
  the corridor in silence.  There's a knock on the door.  He moves
  back, casually...

        WILLIAM
    Coming.

  He opens the door.  It's her.

        WILLIAM
    Oh hi.  Forget something?

        ANNA
    I forgot my bag.

        WILLIAM
    Oh right.

  He shoots into the kitchen and picks up the forgotten shopping
  bag.  Then returns and hands it to her.

        WILLIAM
    Here we go.

        ANNA
    Thanks.  Well...

  They stand in that corridor -- in that small space.  Second time
  saying goodbye.  A strange feeling of intimacy.  She leans
  forward and she kisses him.  Total silence.  A real sense of the
  strangeness of those lips, those famous lips on his.  They part.

        WILLIAM
    I apologize for the 'surreal but nice'
    comment.  Disaster...

        ANNA
    Don't worry about it.  I thought the
    apricot and honey business was the
    real lowpoint.

  Suddenly there is a clicking of a key in the lock.

        WILLIAM
    Oh my God.  My flatmate.  I'm sorry --
    there's no excuse for him.

  Spike walks in.

        SPIKE
    Hi.

        ANNA
    Hi.

        WILLIAM
    Hi.

  Spike walks past unsuspiciously and heads into the kitchen.

        SPIKE
    I'm just going to go into the kitchen
    to get some food -- and then I'm going
    to tell you a story that will make your
    balls shrink to the size of raisins.

  And leaves them in the corridor.

        ANNA
    Probably best not tell anyone about
    this.

        WILLIAM
    Right.  No one.  I mean, I'll tell
    myself sometimes but... don't worry
    -- I won't believe it.

        ANNA
    Bye.

  And she leaves, with just a touch of William's hand.  Spike
  comes out of the kitchen, eating something white out of a
  styrofoam container with a spoon.

        SPIKE
    There's something wrong with this
    yogurt.

        WILLIAM
    It's not yogurt -- it's mayonnaise.

        SPIKE
    Well, there you go.
      (takes another big spoonful)
    On for a video fest tonight?  I've
    got some absolute classic.

  INT. WILLIAM'S LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

  The lights are off.  William and Spike on the couch, just the
  light from the TV playing on their faces.  Cut to the TV full
  screen.  There is Anna.  She is in a stylish Woody Allen type
  modern romantic comedy, 'Gramercy Park,' in black and white.

  INT. MANHATTAN ART GALLERY - DAY

  Anna's character -- Woody Anna -- is walking around the gallery
  with her famous co-star, Michael.  They should be the perfect
  couple, but there is tension.  Anna is not happy.

        MICHAEL
    Smile.

        ANNA
    No.

        MICHAEL
    Smile.

        ANNA
    I've got nothing to smile about.

        MICHAEL
    Okay in about 7 seconds, I'm going to
    ask you to marry me.

  And after a couple of seconds -- wow -- she smiles.

  INT. WILLIAM'S LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

        SPIKE
    Imagine -- somewhere in the world
    there's a man who's allowed to kiss
    her.

        WILLIAM
    Yes, she is fairly fabulous.

  INT. BOOKSHOP - DAY

  The next day.  William and Martin quietly co-existing.  An annoy-
  ing customer enters.  Mr. Smith.

        MR. SMITH
    Do you have any books by Dickens?

        WILLIAM
    No, we're a travel bookshop.  We only
    sell travel books.

        MR. SMITH
    Oh right.  How about that new John
    Grisham thriller?

        WILLIAM
    No, that's a novel too.

        MR. SMITH
    Oh right.  Have you got a copy of
    'Winnie the Pooh'?

  Pause.

        WILLIAM
    Martin -- your customer.

        MARTIN
    Can I help you?

  William looks up.  At that moment the entire window is suddenly
  taken up by the huge side of a bus, obscuring the light -- and
  entirely covered with a portrait of Anna -- from her new film,
  'Helix.'

  INT. WILLIAM'S HOUSE - CONDOR/LIVING ROOM - DAY

  William heads upstairs and pauses.  Spike coming down, wearing
  full body scuba diving gear.

        SPIKE
    Hey.

        WILLIAM
    Hi...

  INT. WILLIAM'S KITCHEN - DAY

  The two of them fixing a cup of tea in the kitchen.

        WILLIAM
    Just incidentally -- why are you
    wearing that?

        SPIKE
    Ahm -- combination of factors really.
    No clean clothes...

        WILLIAM
    There never will be, you know, unless
    you actually clean your clothes.

        SPIKE
    Right.  Vicious circle.  And then I was
    like rooting around in your things,
    and found this, and I thought -- cool.
    Kind of spacey.

  EXT. WILLIAM'S TERRACE - DAY

  The two of them on the rooftop terrace, passing the day.
  William is reading 'The bookseller.'  The terrace is small and
  the plants aren't great -- but it overlooks London in a rather
  wonderful way.  Spike still in scuba gear, goggles on.

        SPIKE
    There's something wrong with the
    goggles though...

        WILLIAM
    No, they were prescription, so I could
    see all the fishes properly.

        SPIKE
    Groovy.  You should do more of this
    stuff.

        WILLIAM
    So -- any messages?

        SPIKE
    Yeh, I wrote a couple down.

        WILLIAM
    Two?  That's it?

        SPIKE
    You want me to write down all your
    messages?

  William closes his eyes in exasperation.

        WILLIAM
    Who were the ones you didn't write
    down from?

        SPIKE
    Ahm let's see -- ahm.  No.  Gone
    completely.  Oh no, wait.  There was --
    one from your mum: she said don't
    forget lunch and her leg's hurting
    again.

        WILLIAM
    Right.  No one else?

        SPIKE
    Absolutely not.

  Spike leans back and relaxes.

        SPIKE
    Though if we're going for this
    obsessive writing-down-all-messages
    thing -- some American girl called
    Anna called a few days ago.

  William freezes -- then looks at Spike.

        WILLIAM
    What did she say?

        SPIKE
    Well, it was genuinely bizarre...
    she said, hi -- it's Anna -- and then
    she said, call me at the Ritz -- and
    then gave herself a completely
    different name.

        WILLIAM
    Which was?

        SPIKE
    Absolutely no idea.  Remembering one
    name's bad enough...

  INT. WILLIAM'S LIVING ROOM - DAY

  William on the phone.  We hear the formal man at the other end of
  the phone.  And then intercut with him.

        WILLIAM
    Hello.

        RITZ MAN (V.O.)
    May I help you, sir?

        WILLIAM
    Ahm, look this is a very odd
    situation.  I'm a friend of Anna
    Scott's -- and she rang me at home the
    day before yesterday -- and left a
    message saying she's staying with
    you...

  INT. RITZ RECEPTION - DAY

        RITZ MAN
    I'm sorry, we don't have anyone of
    that name here, sir.

        WILLIAM
    No, that's right -- I know that.  She
    said she's using another name -- but
    the problem is she left the message
    with my flatmate, which was a serious
    mistake.

  INT. WILLIAM'S LIVING ROOM

        WILLIAM (cont'd)
    Imagine if you will the stupidest
    person you've ever met -- are you
    doing that...?

  Spike happens to be in the foreground of this shot.  He's read-
  ing a newspaper.

        RITZ MAN
    Yes, sir.  I have him in my mind.

        WILLIAM
    And then double it -- and that is the
    -- what can I say -- git I'm living
    with and he cannot remember...

        SPIKE
    Try 'Flintstone.'

        WILLIAM
      (to Spike)
    What?

        SPIKE
    I think she said her name was
    'Flintstone.'

        WILLIAM
    Does 'Flintstone' mean anything to
    you?

        RITZ MAN
    I'll put you right through, sir.

  Flintstone is indeed the magic word.

        WILLIAM
    Oh my God.

  He practices how to sound.

        WILLIAM
    Hello.  Hi.  Hi.

        ANNA (V.O.)
    Hi.

  We hear her voice -- don't see her.

        WILLIAM
      (caught out)
    Oh hi.  It's William Thacker.  We,
    ahm I work in a bookshop.

        ANNA (V.O.)
    You played it pretty cool here,
    waiting for three days to call.

        WILLIAM
    No, I've never played anything cool
    in my entire life.  Spike, who I'll
    stab to death later, never gave me the
    message.

        ANNA (V.O.)
    Oh -- Okay.

        WILLIAM
    Perhaps I could drop round for tea or
    something?

        ANNA (V.O.)
    Yeh -- unfortunately, things are
    going to be pretty busy, but... okay,
    let's give it a try.  Four o'clock
    could be good.

        WILLIAM
    Right.  Great.
      (he hangs up)
    Classic.  Classic.

  EXT. RITZ - DAY

  William jumps off a bus and walks toward the Ritz.  He carries a
  small bunch of roses.

  INT. RITZ HOTEL - DAY

  He approaches the lifts.  At the lift, he pushes the button and
  the doors open.  As he is getting in, William is joined by a young
  man.  His name is Tarquin.

        WILLIAM
    Which floor?

        TARQUIN
    Three.

  William pushes the button.  They wait for the doors to close.

  INT. RITZ CORRIDOR - DAY

  The lift lands.  William gets out.  So does Tarquin.  Rooms
  30-35 are to the left.  35-39 to the right.  William heads right.
  So does Tarquin.

  William is puzzled.  He slows down as he approaches room 38.  So
  does Tarquin.  William spots, so does Tarquin.  William points
  at the number.

        WILLIAM
    Are you sure you...?

        TARQUIN
    Yes.

        WILLIAM
    Oh.  Right.

  He knocks.  A bright, well-tailored American girl opens the door.

        KAREN
    Hello, I'm Karen.  Sorry -- things
    are running a bit late.  Here's the
    thing...

  She hands them a very slick, expensively produced press kits,
  with the poster picture of Anna, for the film 'Helix.'

  INT. THE TRAFALGAR SUITE ANTE-ROOM - DAY

  A few seconds later -- they enter the main waiting room.  There
  are a number of journalists waiting for their audience.

        KAREN
    What did you think of the film?

        TARQUIN
    Marvellous.  'Close Encounters'
    meets 'Jean De Florette.'  Oscar-
    winning stuff.

  They both turn to William for his opinion.

        WILLIAM
    I agree.

        KAREN
    I'm sorry.  I didn't get down what
    magazines you're from.

        TARQUIN
    'Time Out.'

        KAREN
    Great.  And you...

        WILLIAM
      (seeing it on a coffee
       table)
    'Horse and Hound.'  The name's
    William Whacker.  I think she might
    be expecting me.

        KAREN
    Okay -- take a seat.  I'll check.

  They sit down as Karen goes off.

        TARQUIN
    You've brought her flowers?

  William goes for the cover-up.

        WILLIAM
    No -- they're... for my grandmother.
    She's in a hospital nearby.  Thought
    I'd kill two birds with one stone.

        TARQUIN
    I'm sorry.  Which hospital?

  Pause.  He's in trouble.

        WILLIAM
    Do you mind me not saying -- it's a
    rather distressing disease and the
    name of the hospital rather gives it
    away.

        TARQUIN
    Oh sure.  Of course.

        KAREN
    Mr. Thacker.

  Saved by the bell.

  INT. TRAFALGAR SUIT CORRIDOR - DAY

        KAREN
    You've got five minutes.

  He is shown in through big golden doors.  Karen stays outside.

  INT. THE TRAFALGAR SUITE SITTING ROOM - DAY

  There Anna is, framed in the window.  Glorious.

        WILLIAM
    Hi.

        ANNA
    Hello.

        WILLIAM
    I brought these, but clearly...

  There are lots of other flowers in the room.

        ANNA
    Oh no, ho -- these are great.

  A fair amount of tension.  These two people hardly know each
  other -- and the first and last time they met, they kissed.

        WILLIAM
    Sorry about not ringing back.  The
    whole two-names concept was totally too
    much for my flatman's pea-sized
    intellect.

        ANNA
    No, it's a stupid privacy thing.  I
    always choose a cartoon character --
    last time out, I was Mrs. Bambi.

  At which moment Jeremy, Karen's boss, comes in.  A fairly grave,
  authoritative fifty-year-old PR man consulting a list.

        JEREMY
    Everything okay?

        ANNA
    Yes, thanks.

        JEREMY
    And you are from 'Horse and Hound'
    magazine?

  William nods.

        ANNA
    Is that so?

  William shrugs his shoulders.  Jeremy settles at a little desk
  in the corner and makes notes.  A pause.  William feels he has to
  act the part.  They sit in chairs opposite each other.

        WILLIAM
    So I'll just fire away, shall I?

  Anna nods.

        WILLIAM
    Right.  Ahm... the film's great...
    and I just wondered -- whether you
    ever thought of having more...
    horses in it?

        ANNA
    Ahm -- well -- we would have liked to
    -- but it was difficult, obviously,
    being set in space.

        WILLIAM
    Obviously.  Very difficult.

  Jeremy leaves.

  William puts his head in his hands.  He was panic.

        WILLIAM
    I'm sorry -- I arrived outside -- they
    thrust this thing into my hand -- I
    didn't know what to do.

        ANNA
    No, it's my fault, I thought this
    would all be over by now.  I just
    wanted to sort of apologize for the
    kissing thing.  I seriously don't
    know what got in to me.  I just wanted
    to make sure you were fine about it.

        WILLIAM
    Absolutely fine about it.

  Re-enter Jeremy.

        JEREMY
    Do remember that Miss Scott is also
    keen to talk about her next project,
    which is shooting later in the summer.

        WILLIAM
    Oh yes -- excellent.  Ahm -- any horses
    in that one?  Or hounds, of course.  Our
    readers are equally intrigued by both
    species.
        ANNA
    It takes place on a submarine.

        WILLIAM
    Yes.  Right... But if there were horses,
    would you be riding them yourself or
    would you be getting a stunt horse person
    double sort of thing?

  Jeremy exits.

        WILLIAM
    I'm just a complete moron.  Sorry.
    This is the sort of thing that happens
    in dreams -- not in real life.  Good
    dreams, obviously -- it's a dream to
    see you.

        ANNA
    And what happens next in the dream?

  It's a challenge.

        WILLIAM
    Well, I suppose in the dream dream
    scenario.  I just... ahm, change my
    personality, because you can do that
    in dreams, and  walk across and kiss the
    girl but you know it'll never happen.

  Pause.  Then they move towards each other when... Jeremy
  enters.

        JEREMY
    Time's up, I'm afraid.  Sorry it was
    so short.  Did you get what you wanted?

        WILLIAM
    Very nearly.

        JEREMY
    Maybe time for one last question?

        WILLIAM
    Right.

  Jeremy goes out -- it's their last seconds.

        WILLIAM
    Are you busy tonight?

        ANNA
    Yes.

  They look at each other.  Jeremy enters, with another journalists
  in tow.  Anna and William stand and shake hands formally.

        ANNA
    Well, it was nice to meet you.
    Surreal but nice.

        WILLIAM
    Thank you.  You are 'Horse and Hound's'
    favorite actress.  You and Black
    Beauty.  Tied.

  INT. TRAFALGAR SUITE CORRIDOR - DAY

  William exits fairly despondent and heads for the door.  Tarquin
  is in the corridor calling on his mobile phone.

        TARQUIN
    How was she?

        WILLIAM
    Fabulous.

        TARQUIN
    Wait a minute -- she took your
    grandmother's flowers?

  William can't think his way out of this.

        WILLIAM
    Yes.  That's right.  Bitch.

  He turns to go, but is accosted by Karen.

        KAREN
    If you'd like to come with me we can
    rush you through the others.

        WILLIAM
    The others?

  INT. RITZ INTERVIEW ROOM - DAY

        KAREN
    Mr. Thacker's from 'Horse and Hound.'

  A forty-year-old actor with great presence warmly shakes
  William's hand.

        MALE LEAD
    Pleased to meet you.  Did you like the
    film?

        WILLIAM
    Ah... yes, enormously.

        MALE LEAD
    Well, fire away.

        WILLIAM
    Right, right.  Ahm -- did you enjoy
    making the film?

        MALE LEAD
    I did.

        WILLIAM
    Any bit in particular?

        MALE LEAD
    Well, you tell me which bit you liked
    most -- and I'll tell you if I enjoyed
    making it.

        WILLIAM
    Ahm right, right, I liked the bit in
    space very much.  Did you enjoy
    making  that bit?

  INT. RITZ INTERVIEW ROOM - DAY

  Same room same seat, minutes later, with a monolingual foreign
  actor and an interpreter.

        WILLIAM
    Did you identify with the character
    you were playing?

        INTERPRETER
    Te identicaste con el personaje que
    interpretabas?

        FOREIGN ACTOR
    No.

        INTERPRETER
    No.

        WILLIAM
    Ah.  Why not?

        INTERPRETER
    Por que no?

        FOREIGN ACTOR
    Porque es un robot carnivoro
    psicopata.

        INTERPRETER
    Because he is playing a psychopathic
    flesh-eating robot.

        WILLIAM
    Classic.

  INT. RITZ INTERVIEW ROOM - DAY

  And now William is sitting opposite an eleven-year-old American
  girl.

        WILLIAM
    Is this your first film?

        GIRL
    No -- it's my 22nd.

        WILLIAM
    Of course it is.  Any favourite among
    the 22?

        GIRL
    Working with Leonardo.

        WILLIAM
    Da Vinci?

        GIRL
    Di Caprio.

        WILLIAM
    Of course.  And is he your favourite
    Italian film director?

  INT. RITZ CORRIDOR - DAY

  William emerges traumatized into the corridor.  It is full of
  camera crews.  And there is Karen.

        KAREN
    Mr. Thacker?

        WILLIAM
      (so weary)
    Yes?

        KAREN
    Have you got a moment?

  INT. ANNA'S SUITE SITTING ROOM - DAY

  They knock on her door.

        ANNA (V.O.)
    Come in.

  William enters.  A certain nervousness.  They are alone again.

        ANNA
    Ahm.  That thing I was doing tonight
    -- I'm not doing it any more.  I told
    them I had to spend the evening with
    Britain's premier equestrian
    journalist.

        WILLIAM
    Oh well, great.  Perfect.  Oh no --
    shittity brickitty -- it's my sister's
    birthday -- shit -- we're meant to be
    having dinner.

        ANNA
    Okay -- fine.

        WILLIAM
    But no, I'm sure I can get out of it.

        ANNA
    No, I mean, if it's fine with you,
    I'll, you know, be your date.

        WILLIAM
    You'll be my date at my little sister's
    birthday party?

        ANNA
    If that's all right.

        WILLIAM
    I'm sure it's all right.  My friend
    Max is cooking and he's acknowledged
    to be the worst cook in the world, but
    you know, you could hide the food in
    your handbag or something.

        ANNA
    Okay.

        WILLIAM
    Okay.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S KITCHEN/LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

  Bella and Max are in the kitchen.

        MAX
    He's bringing a girl?

        BELLA
    Miracles do happen.

        MAX
    Does the girl have a name?

        BELLA
    He wouldn't say.

        MAX
    Christ, what is going on in there?

  The oven seems to be smoking a little.  Then the bell rings.

        MAX (cont'd)
      Oh God.

  It's bad timing.  Max shoots out of the kitchen.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S CORRIDOR - NIGHT

  Max heads for the door impatiently.  He opens it and turns back
  without looking at William and Anna standing there.

        MAX
    Come on in.  Vague food crisis.

  William and Anna move along the corridor to the kitchen.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S KITCHEN/LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

  Bella is there.

        BELLA
    Hiya -- sorry -- the guinea fowl is
    proving more complicated than
    expected.

        WILLIAM
    He's cooking guinea fowl?

        BELLA
    Don't even ask.

        ANNA
    Hi.

        BELLA
    Hi.  Good Lord -- you're the spitting
    image of...

        WILLIAM
    Bella -- this is Anna.

        BELLA
    Right.
      (pause)

        MAX
    Okay.  Crisis over.

  He rises from his stove position.

        WILLIAM
    Max.  This is Anna.

        MAX
    Hello, Anna ahm...
      (He recognizes her -- the
       word just falls out)
    Scott -- have some wine.

        ANNA
    Thank you.

  Door bell goes.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S CORRIDOR - NIGHT

  Max opens the door -- it is Honey.

        MAX
    Hi.

  She does a little pose, having worn a real party dress.

        MAX
    Yes, Happy Birthday.

  They head back along the corridor.

        MAX
    Look, your brother has brought this
    girl, and ahm...

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S KITCHEN/LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

  They enter the kitchen.

        HONEY
    Hi guys.
      (sees Anna)
    Oh holy fuck.

        WILLIAM
    Hun -- this is Anna.  Anna -- this is
    Honey -- she's my baby sitter.

        ANNA
    Hiya.

        HONEY
    Oh God this is one of those key moments
    in life, when it's possible you can be
    really, genuinely cool -- and I'm going
    to fail a hundred percent.  I absolutely
    and totally and utterly adore you and I
    think you're the most beautiful woman
    in the world and more importantly I
    genuinely believe and have believed for
    some time now that we can be best
    friends.  What do you think?

        ANNA
    Ahm... I think that sounds -- you know
    -- lucky me.  Happy Birthday.

  She hands her a present.

        HONEY
    Oh my God.  You gave me a present.
    We're best friends already.  Marry
    Will -- he's a really nice guy and
    then we can be sisters.

        ANNA
    I'll think about it.

  The front door bell goes.

        MAX
    That'll be Bernie.

  He heads out into the corridor to the front door.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S CORRIDOR - NIGHT

  Max opens the door.

        MAX
    Hello, Bernie.

        BERNIE
    I'm sorry I'm so late.  Bollocksed up
    at work again, I fear.  Millions down
    the drain.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S KITCHEN/LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

  They enter the room.

        MAX
    Bernie -- this is Anna.

        BERNIE
    Hello, Anna.  Delighted to meet you.

  Doesn't recognize her -- turns to Honey.

        BERNIE
    Honey Bunny -- happy birthday to you.
      (hands her a present)
    It's a hat.  You don't have to wear
    it or anything.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S KITCHEN/LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

  A minute or two later -- they are standing, drinking wine before
  dinner.  Bernie with Anna on their own -- William helping Max in
  the kitchen.

        MAX
    You haven't slept with her, have you?

        WILLIAM
    That is a cheap question and the answer
    is, of course, no comment.

        MAX
    'No comment' means 'yes.'

        WILLIAM
    No, it doesn't.

        MAX
    Do you ever masturbate?

        WILLIAM
    Definitely no comment.

        MAX
    You see -- it means 'yes.'

  Then on to Bernie's conversation.

        BERNIE
    So tell me Anna -- what do you do?

        ANNA
    I'm an actress.

        BERNIE
    Splendid.  I'm actually in the stock-
    market, so not really similar fields,
    though I have done some amateur stuff
    -- P.G. Wodehouse, you know -- farce,
    all that.  'Ooh -- careful there,
    vicar.'  Always imagined it's a
    pretty tough job, though, acting.
    I mean the wages are a scandal,
    aren't they?

        ANNA
    Well, they can be.

        BERNIE
    I see friends from university --
    clever chaps -- been in the business
    longer than you -- they're scraping
    by on seven, eight thousand a year.
    It's no life.  What sort of acting
    do you do?

        ANNA
    Films mainly.

        BERNIE
    Oh splendid.  Well done.  How's the
    pay in movies?  I mean, last film you
    did, what did you get paid?

        ANNA
    Fifteen million dollars.

        BERNIE
    Right.  Right.  So that's... fairly
    good.  On the high side... have you
    tried the nuts?

        MAX
    Right -- I think we're ready.

  They all move towards the kitchen.

        ANNA
      (to Bella)
    I wonder if you could tell me where
    the...?

        BELLA
    Oh, it's just down the corridor on
    the right.

        HONEY
    I'll show you.

  A moment's silence as they leave -- then in a split second the
  others all turn to William.

        BELLA
    Quickly, quickly -- talk very quickly
    what are you doing here with Anna
    Scott?

        BERNIE
    Anna Scott?

        BELLA
    Yes.

        BERNIE
    The movie star?

        BELLA
    Yup.

        BERNIE
    Oh God.  Oh God.  Oh Goddy God.

  The horror of his remembered conversation slowly unfolds.
  Honey re-enters.

        HONEY
    I don't believe it.  I walked into the
    loo with her.  I was still talking when
    she started unbuttoning her jeans...
    She had to ask me to leave.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S CONSERVATORY - NIGHT

  A little later.  They are sat at dinner.  Bella next to Anna.

        BELLA
    What do you think of the guinea fowl?

        ANNA
      (whispering)
    I'm a vegetarian.

        BELLA
    Oh God.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S CONSERVATORY - NIGHT

  Moving on through the evening -- they are very relaxed, as they
  eat dinner.  A few seconds watching the evening going well -- Anna
  is taking this in -- real friends -- relaxed -- easy, teasing.
  And there's a cake.  Honey wears Bernie's unsuitable hat.  Anna
  watches William laughing at something and then putting his head
  in his hands with mock shame.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S CONSERVATORY - NIGHT

  Coffee time.

        MAX
    Having you here, Anna, firmly
    establishes what I've long suspected,
    that we really are the most desperate
    hot of under-achievers.

        BERNIE
    Shame!

        MAX
    I'm not saying it's a bad thing, in
    fact, I think it's something we should
    take pride in.  I'm going to give the
    last brownie as a prize to the saddest
    act here.

  A little pause.  Then William turns to Bernie.

        WILLIAM
    Bernie.

        BERNIE
    Well, obviously it's me, isn't it --
    I work in the City in a job I don't
    understand and everyone keeps getting
    promoted above me.  I haven't had a
    girlfriends since... puberty and,
    well, the long and short of it is,
    nobody fancies me, and if these cheeks
    get any chubbier, they never will.

        HONEY
    Nonsense.  I fancy you.  Or I did
    before you got so far.

        MAX
    You see -- and unless I'm much mistaken,
    your job still pays you rather a lot of
    money, while Honey here, she earns
    nothing flogging her guts out at
    London's seediest record store.

        HONEY
    Yes.  And I don't have hair -- I've got
    feathers, and I've got funny goggly
    eyes, and I'm attracted to cruel men and
    ... no one'll ever marry me because my
    boosies have actually started
    shrinking.

        MAX
    You see -- incredibly sad.

        BELLA
    On the other hand, her best friend is
    Anna Scott.

        HONEY
    That's true, I can't deny it.  She
    needs me, what can I say?

        BELLA
    And most of her limbs work.  Whereas
    I'm stuck in its thing day and night,
    in a house full of ramps.  And to add
    insult to serious injury -- I've
    totally given up smoking, my favourite
    thing, and the truth is... we can't
    have a baby.

  Dead silence.

        WILLIAM
    Bella.

  Bella shrugs her shoulders.  Bernie is totally grief-struck.

        BERNIE
    No.  Not true...

        BELLA
    C'est la vie... We're lucky in lots
    of ways, but... Surely it's worth a
    brownie.

  William reaches for her hand.  Max breaks the sombre mood.

        MAX
    Well, I don't know.  Look at
    William.  Very unsuccessful
    professionally.  Divorced.  Used to
    be handsome, now kind of squidgy
    around the edges -- and absolutely
    certain never to hear from Anna again
    after she's heard that his nickname
    at school was Floppy.

  They all laugh.  Anna smiles across at William.

        WILLIAM
    So I get the brownie?

        MAX
    I think you do, yes.

        ANNA
    Wait a minute.  What about me?

        MAX
    I'm sorry?  You think you deserve the
    brownie?

        ANNA
    Well... a shot at it.

        WILLIAM
    You'll have to prove it.  This is a
    great brownie and I'm going to fight
    for it.  State your claim.

        ANNA
    Well, I've been on a diet since I was
    nineteen, which means basically I've
    been hungry for a decade.  I've had a
    sequence of not nice boyfriends -- one
    of whom hit me: and every time my heart
    gets broken it gets splashed across
    the newspapers as entertainment.
    Meantime, it cost millions to get me
    looking like this...

        HONEY
    Really?

        ANNA
    Really -- and one day, not long from
    now...

  While she says this, quiet settles around the table.  The thing
  is -- she sort of means it and is opening up to them.

        ANNA
    ... my looks will go, they'll find out
    I can't act and I'll become a sad
    middle-aged woman who looks a bit like
    someone who was famous for a while.

  Silence... they all look at her... then.

        MAX
    Nah!!!  Nice try, gorgeous -- but you
    don't fool anyone.

  The mood is instantly broken.  They all laugh.

        WILLIAM
    Pathetic effort to hog the brownie.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S KITCHEN/LIVING ROOM/CORRIDOR - NIGHT

  Anna and William are leaving.

        ANNA
    That was such a great evening.

        MAX
    I'm delighted.

  He holds out his hand to shake.  She kisses him on the cheek.
  He stumbles back with joy.

        ANNA
    And may I say that's a gorgeous tie.

        MAX
    Now you're lying.

        ANNA
    You're right.  I told you I was bad
    at acting.

  Max loves this.

        ANNA
      (to Bella)
    Lovely to meet you.

        BELLA
    And you.  I'll wait till you've gone
    before I tell him you're a
    vegetarian.

        MAX
    No!

        ANNA
    Night, night, Honey.

        HONEY
    I'm so sorry about the loo thing.
    I meant to leave but I just...
    look, ring me if you need someone to
    go shopping with.  I know lots of
    nice, cheap places... not that money
    necessarily...
      (gives up)
    nice to meet you.

  And Honey gives her a huge hug.

        ANNA
    You too -- from now on you are my
    style guru.

  Anna and William head out... Bernie tries to save some dignity.

        BERNIE
    Love your work.

  They move to the door and wave goodbye.

  EXT. MAX AND BELLA'S HOUSE - NIGHT

  William and Anna step outside.  From inside they hear a massive
  and hysterical scream of the friends letting out their true
  feelings.  William is a little embarrassed.

        WILLIAM
    Sorry -- they always do that when I
    leave the house.

  The house is in Lansdowne Road, on the edge of Notting Hill.
  They walk for a moment.  A bit of silence.

        ANNA
    Floppy, huh?

        WILLIAM
    It's the hair!  It's to do with the
    hair.

        ANNA
    Why is she in a wheelchair?

        WILLIAM
    It was an accident -- about eighteen
    months ago.

        ANNA
    And the pregnancy thing -- is that to
    do with the accident?

        WILLIAM
    You know, I'm not sure.  I don't
    think they'd tried for kids before,
    as fate would have it.

  They walk in silence for a moment.  Then...

        WILLIAM
    Would you like to come... my house is
    just...?

  She smiles and shakes her head.

        ANNA
    Too complicated.

        WILLIAM
    That's fine.

        ANNA
    Busy tomorrow?

        WILLIAM
    I thought you were leaving.

        ANNA
    I was.

  EXT. NOTTING HILL GARDEN - NIGHT

  A little later in the walk.

        ANNA
    What's in there?

  They are now walking by a five foot railing, with foliage
  behind it.

        WILLIAM
    Gardens.  All these streets round
    here have these mysterious communal
    gardens in the middle of them.
    They're like little villages.

        ANNA
    Let's go in.

        WILLIAM
    Ah no -- that's the point -- they're
    private villages -- only the people
    who live round the edges are allowed
    in.

        ANNA
    You abide by rules like that?

        WILLIAM
    Ahm...

  Her look makes it clear that she is waiting with interest on
  the answer to this.

        WILLIAM
    Heck no -- other people do -- but not
    me -- I just do what I want.

  He rattles the gate, then starts his climb -- but doesn't quite
  make it, and falls back onto the pavement...

        WILLIAM
      (casually)
    Whoopsidaisies.

        ANNA
    What did you say?

        WILLIAM
    Nothing.

        ANNA
    Yes, you did.

        WILLIAM
    No, I didn't.

        ANNA
    You said 'whoopsidaisies.'

  Tiny pause.

        WILLIAM
    I don't think so.  No one has said
    'whoopsidaisies,' do they -- I mean
    unless they're...

        ANNA
    There's no 'unless.'  No one has said
    "whoopsidaisies" for fifty years and
    even then it was only little girls
    with blonde ringlets.

        WILLIAM
    Exactly.  Here we go again.

  He fails, and unfortunately, spontaneously...

        WILLIAM
    Whoopsidaisies.

  They look at each other.

        WILLIAM
    It's a disease I've got -- it's a
    clinical thing.  I'm taking pills and
    having injections -- it won't last
    long.

        ANNA
    Step aside.

  She starts to climb.

        WILLIAM
    Actually be careful Anna -- it's
    harder than it looks...

  But she's already almost over.

        WILLIAM
    Oh no it's not -- it's easy.

  A few seconds later.  Anna jumps down into the garden.

        ANNA
    Come on, Flops.

  William clambers over with terrible difficulty, dusts himself
  off, and heads towards where she stands.

        WILLIAM
    Now seriously -- what in the world
    in this garden could make that
    ordeal worthwhile?

  She leans forward -- and, for the firs time since the first
  time -- she kisses him.  This time a proper kiss.  A tiny pause.

        WILLIAM
    Nice garden.

  EXT. MAGIC GARDEN - NIGHT

  They walk around the garden.  It's a moonlit dream.  We see
  the lights of the houses that surround the garden.  They come
  across a single, simple wooden bench.

        ANNA
    'For June, who loved this garden --
    from Joseph who always sat beside
    her.'

  We cut in and see an inscription carved into the wood.  She
  doesn't read the dates, carved below -- 'June Wetherby, 1917
  - 1992.'  She is slightly chocked by it.

        ANNA
    Some people do spend their whole
    lives together.

  He nods.  They are standing on either side of the bench,
  looking at each other.  The camera glides away from them, up
  into the night sky, leaving them alone in the garden.  Music
  plays.

  INT. WILLIAM'S LIVING ROOM - EVENING

  William in a towel rushes downstairs, having just had a shower.
  He shoots past Spike.

        WILLIAM
    Bollocks, bollocks, bollocks.  Have
    you seen my glasses?

        SPIKE
    No, 'fraid not.

        WILLIAM
    Bollocks.
      (still searching --
       with no help from
       Spike)
    This happens every time I go to the
    cinema.  Average day, my glasses are
    everywhere -- everywhere I look,
    glasses.  But the moment I need them
    they disappear.  It's one of life's
    real cruelties.

        SPIKE
    That's compared to, like,
    earthquakes in the Far East or
    testicular cancer?

        WILLIAM
    Oh shit, is that the time?  I have to
    go.

  INT. WILLIAM'S LIVING ROOM/CORRIDOR - EVENING

  He sprints downstairs, now fully dressed.

        WILLIAM
      (not meaning it)
    Thanks for your help on the glasses
    thing.

        SPIKE
      (sincerely)
    You're welcome.  Did you find them?

        WILLIAM
    Sort of.

  INT. CINEMA - NIGHT

  Mid-film.  We move across the audience.  And there is in the
  middle of it, we see Anna, watching the screen, and next to
  her, William, watching the film keenly, through his scuba-
  diving goggles.

  INT. RESTAURANT - NIGHT

  A very smart Japanese restaurant.  We see Anna and William
  sitting, near the end of their meal.

        ANNA
    So who left who?

        WILLIAM
    She left me.

        ANNA
    Why?

        WILLIAM
    She saw through me.

        ANNA
    Uh-oh.  That's not good.

  We've been aware of the conversation at a nearby table --
  now we can hear it.  Two slightly rowdy men.

        LAWRENCE
    No - No- No!  Give me Anna Scott any
    day.

  William and Anna look at each other.

        GERALD
    I didn't like that last film of hers.
    Fast asleep from the moment the
    lights went down.

  Again -- Anna reacts.

        LAWRENCE
    Don't really care what the films are
    like.  Any film with her in it --
    fine by me.

        GERALD
    No -- not my type at all really.  I
    prefer that other one -- blonde --
    sweet looking -- has an orgasm every
    time you take her out for a cup of
    coffee.

  Anna mouths 'Meg Ryan.'

        LAWRENCE
    Meg Ryan.

  William and Anna smile -- they're enjoying it.

        GERALD
    Drug-induced, I hear -- I believe
    she's actually in rehab as we speak.

        LAWRENCE
    Whatever, she's so clearly up for it.

  Anna's twinkle fades.

        LAWRENCE
    You know -- some girls, they're all
    'stay away chum' but Anna, she's
    absolutely gagging for it.  Do you
    know that in over fifty percent of
    languages the word for "actress" is
    the same as the word for "prostitute."

  This is horrible.

        LAWRENCE
    And Anna is your definitive actress
    -- someone really filthy you can just
    flip over...

        WILLIAM
    Right, that's it.

  He gets up and goes round the corner to the men.  There are in
  fact four of them, the two meeker men, Gavin and Harry, hanging
  on the other guys' witty words.

        WILLIAM
    I'm sorry to disturb you guys but --

        LAWRENCE
    Can I help you?

        WILLIAM
    Well, yes, I wish I hadn't overheard
    your conversation -- but I did and I
    just think, you know...

  He's not a very convincing or frightening figure.

        WILLIAM
    ...the person you're talking about
    is a real person and I think she
    probably deserves a little bit more
    consideration, rather than having
    jerks like you drooling over her...

        LAWRENCE
    Oh sod off, mate.  What are you, her
    dad?

  Anna suddenly appears at his side and whips him away without
  being recognized.

        WILLIAM
    I'm sorry.

        ANNA
    No, that's fine.  I love that you
    tried... time was I'd have done the
    same.

  They walk on and then...

        ANNA
    In fact -- give me a second.

  And she walks straight back to their table.

        ANNA
    Hi.

        LAWRENCE
    Oh my God...

        ANNA
    I'm sorry about my friend -- he's
    very sensitive.

        LAWRENCE
    No, look, I'm sorry...

        ANNA
    Please, please -- let's just leave
    it there.  I'm sure you meant no harm,
    and I'm sure it was just friendly
    banter and I'm sure you dicks are all
    the size of peanuts.  A perfect match
    for the size of your brains.  Enjoy
    your meal.  The tuna's really good.

  And she walks away.  Gerald turns to Lawrence.

        GERALD
    You prick.

  EXT. RITZ ARCADE - NIGHT

  They are walking.

        ANNA
    I shouldn't have done that.  I
    shouldn't have done that.

        WILLIAM
    No, you were brilliant

        ANNA
    I'm rash and I'm stupid and what
    am I doing with you?

        WILLIAM
    I don't know, I'm afraid.

        ANNA
    I don't know either.

  They have arrived at the end of the arcade.

        ANNA
    Here we are.
      (pause)
    Do you want to come up?

        WILLIAM
      (he hoes)
    There seem to be lots of reasons
    why I shouldn't.

        ANNA
    There are lots of reasons.  Do you
    want to come up?

  His look says yes.

        ANNA
    Give me five minutes.

  He watches her go -- and stands in the street.  Music plays.

  INT. RITZ CORRIDOR/ANNA'S SUITE - NIGHT

  William coming along the hotel corridor.  He knocks on the
  door.

        ANNA
    Hiya.

  There's something slightly awry.  He doesn't notice.

        WILLIAM
    Hi.

  He kisses her gently on the cheek.

        WILLIAM
    To be able to do that is such a
    wonderful thing.

        ANNA
      (pause)
    You've got to go.

        WILLIAM
    Why?

        ANNA
    Because my boyfriend, who I thought
    was in America, is in fact in the
    next room.

        WILLIAM
    Your boyfriend?

  He is duly shocked.  She's trying to be calm.

        ANNA
    Yes...

        JEFF (V.O.)
    Who is it?

  Jeff drifts into view behind.  He is a very famous film star and
  looks the part -- well built, very handsome.  Unshaven, he has
  magic charm, whatever he says.  Over a t-shirt, he wears a
  shirt, which he unbuttons as he talks.

        WILLIAM
    Ahm... room service.

        JEFF
    How you doing?  I thought you guys
    all wore those penguin coats.

        WILLIAM
    Well, yes -- usually -- I'd just
    changed to go home -- but I thought
    I'd just deal with this final call.

        JEFF
    Oh great.  Could you do me a favour
    and try to get us some really cold
    water up here?

        WILLIAM
    I'll see what I can do.

        JEFF
    Still, not sparkling.

        WILLIAM
    Absolutely.  Ice cold still water.

        JEFF
    Unless it's illegal in the UK to
    serve liquids below room temperature:
    I don't want you going to jail just
    to satisfy my whims...

        WILLIAM
    No, I'm sure it'll be fine.

        JEFF
    And maybe you could just adios the
    dishes and empty the trash.

        WILLIAM
    Right.

  And he does just that.  Scoops up the two used plates and heads
  to the bin.

        ANNA
    Really -- don't do that -- I'm sure
    this is not his job.

        JEFF
    I'm sorry.  Is this a problem?

        WILLIAM
    Ah -- no.  It's fine.

        JEFF
    What's your name?

        WILLIAM
    Ahm... Bernie.

  Jeff slips him a fiver.

        JEFF
    Thank you, Bernie.
      (to Anna)
    Hey -- nice surprise, or nasty
    surprise?

        ANNA
    Nice surprise.

  He kisses her.

        JEFF
    Liar.
      (to William)
    She hates surprises.  What are you
    ordering?

        ANNA
    I haven't decided.

        JEFF
    Well, don't over-do it.  I don't want
    people saying, 'There goes that
    famous actor with the big, fat
    girlfriend."

  He wanders off taking off his t-shirt.

        WILLIAM
    I better leave.

  Anna just nods.

        WILLIAM
    -- this is a fairly strange reality
    to be faced with.  To be honest, I
    don't realize...

        ANNA
    I'm sorry... I don't know what to
    say.

        WILLIAM
    I think goodbye is traditional.

  INT. RITZ CORRIDOR - NIGHT

  William walks away.

  EXT. RITZ - NIGHT

  William walks down the arcade outside the hotel.  He is
  stunned.

  EXT. LONDON BUS - NIGHT

  William sits alone on a bus.  We see him through the side
  window.  As it drives away, we see that the whole back of the
  bus is taken up with a huge picture of Anna.

  INT. WILLIAM'S BEDROOM - NIGHT

  He gets into his room and sits on the bed.

  INT. SPACESHIP - NIGHT

  Space Anna, in the very hi-tech environment and a serious
  moods, fastens the last clasps on her uniform.  She takes a
  helmet type thing, and places it on her head.

  INT. CONNECT CINEMA - NIGHT

  Cut round to the Coronet cinema where this film is showing.
  It's not full.  The camera moves and finds, sitting on his
  own...William.  Just watching.  We see a momentous flash of
  light from the screen explode, reflected in his eye.

  INT. WILLIAM'S LIVING ROOM - EVENING

  William is looking out the window, lost in thought.  Spike
  enters.

        SPIKE
    Come on -- open up -- this is me --
    Spikey -- I'm in contact with some
    quite important spiritual vibrations.
    What's wrong?

  Spike settles on the arm of a chair.  William decides to open
  up a bit...

        WILLIAM
    Well, okay.  There's this girl...

        SPIKE
    Aha!  I'd been getting a female vibe.
    Good.  Speak on, dear friend.

        WILLIAM
    She's someone I just can't -- someone
    who... self-evidently can't be mine --
    and it's as if I've taken love-heroin
    -- and now I can't even have it again.
    I've opened Pandora's box.  And there's
    trouble inside.

  Spike nods thoughtfully.

        SPIKE
    Yeh.  Yeh... tricky... tricky... I
    knew a girl at school called Pandora
    ... never got to see her box though.

  He roars with laughter.  William smiles.

        WILLIAM
    Thanks.  Yes -- very helpful.

  INT. TONY'S RESTAURANT - NIGHT

  Only two tables are being used.  William and his friends are
  on their first course.  Bernie reads an "Evening Standard,"
  with a picture of Anna and Jeff at Heathrow Airport.

        MAX
    You didn't know she had a boyfriend?

        WILLIAM
    No -- did you?

  Their looks make it obvious that everyone did.

        WILLIAM
    Bloody hell, I can't believe it --
    my whole life ruined because I don't
    read 'Hello' magazine.

        MAX
    Let's face facts.  This was always a
    no-go situation.  Anna's a goddess
    and you know what happens to mortals
    who get involved with the gods.

        WILLIAM
    Buggered?

        MAX
    Every time.  But don't despair -- I
    think I have the solution to your
    problems.

        WILLIAM
    Really?

  They all look to him for wise words.

        MAX
    Her name is Tessa and she works in
    the contracts department.  The hair,
    I admit, is unfashionable frizzy --
    but she's as bright as a button and
    kisses like a nymphomaniac on death
    row.  Apparently.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S KITCHEN/LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

  The kitchen.  William is looking uneasy.  A doorbell rings.

        MAX
    Now -- try.

  William nods.  Max heads off to the door.  We stay with William
  -- and just hear the door open and a voice come down the
  corridor.

        TESSA (V.O.)
    I got completely lost -- it's real
    difficult, isn't it?  Everything's
    got the word 'Kensington' in it --
    Kensington Park Road, Kensington
    Gardens, Kensington bloody Park
    Gardens...

  They reach the kitchen.  Tessa is a lush girl with huge hair.

        MAX
    Tessa -- this is Bella my wife.

        TESSA
    Oh hello, you're in a wheelchair.

        BELLA
    That's right.

        MAX
    And this is William.

        TESSA
    Hello William.  Max has told me
    everything about you.

        WILLIAM
      (frightened)
    Has he?

        MAX
    Wine?

        TESSA
    Oh yes please.  Come on, Willie, let's
    get sloshed.

  She turns to take the wine and William has a split second to send
  a message of panic to Bella.  She agrees -- it's bad.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S KITCHEN/CONSERVATORY - NIGHT

  Max walks over to the table.  Honey, Bella, William and another
  girl.

        MAX
    Keziah -- some woodcock?

        KEZIAH
    No, thank you  -- I'm a fruitarian.

        MAX
    I don't realize that.

  It is left to William, who has been set up here, to fill the
  pause.

        WILLIAM
    And ahm -- what's a fruitarian exactly?

        KEZIAH
    We believe that fruits and vegetables
    have feelings so we think cooking is
    cruel.  We only eat things that have
    actually fallen from the tree or bush
    -- that are, in fact, dead already.

        WILLIAM
    Right.  Right.  Interesting stuff.
      (pause)
    So these carrots...

        KEZIAH
    Have been murdered, yes.

        WILLIAM
    Murdered?  Poor carrots.  How beastly.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S CONSERVATORY - NIGHT

  Time for coffee and chocolates.  Beside William sits the final,
  perfect girl.  She is Rosie, quite young, smartly dressed,
  open-hearted.  It is just Max and William and Bella and her.

        ROSIE
    Delicious coffee.

        MAX
    Thank you.  I'm sorry about the lamb.

        ROSIE
    No -- I thought it was really, you know,
    interesting.

        WILLIAM
    Interesting means inedible.

        ROSIE
    Really inedible -- yes that's right.

  They all laugh.  It's going very well.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S CORRIDOR - NIGHT

  William is with Rosie by the door -- just about to say goodbye.

        ROSIE
    Maybe we'll meet again some time.

        WILLIAM
    Yes.  That would be... great.

  She kisses him gently on the cheek.  He opens the door -- she
  walks out.  He shuts the door quietly and heads back into the
  living room...

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

  Max and Bella wait excitedly.

        MAX
    Well?

        WILLIAM
    She's perfect, perfect.

        BELLA
    And?

  William makes a gentle, exasperated gesture, then...

        WILLIAM
    I think you have forgotten...
      (he looks at them)
    what an unusual situation you have
    here -- to find someone you actually
    love, who'll love you -- the chances
    are... always miniscule.  Look at me
    -- not counting the American -- I've
    only loved two girls in my whole life,
    both total disasters.

        MAX
    That's not fair.

        WILLIAM
    No really, one of them marries me and
    then leaves me quicker than you can
    say Indiana Jones -- and the other,
    who seriously ought to have known
    better, casually marries my best
    friend.

        BELLA
      (pause)
    Still loves you though.

        WILLIAM
    In a depressingly asexual way.

        BELLA
      (pause)
    I never fancied you much actually...

  They all roar with laughter.

        BELLA
    I mean I loved you -- you were terribly
    funny.  But all that kissing my ears...

        WILLIAM
    Oh no -- this is just getting worse.
    I am going to find myself, 30 years
    from now, still on this couch.

        BELLA
    Do you want to stay?

        WILLIAM
    Why not -- all that awaits me at home
    is a masturbating Welshman.

  Music starts to play to take us through these silent scenes.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

  Max lifts Bella off her couch and carries her upstairs.

  Mix through -- William sits on the couch downstairs -- eyes wide
  open -- thinking.

  INT. MAX AND BELLA'S KITCHEN/LIVING ROOM - DAY

  Morning.  Max, all in his suit for the city... Bella kisses him
  goodbye.  William sees this from the kitchen.  She is also
  dressed for work -- and moves back into the kitchen to pack her
  briefcase with law books from the kitchen table.

  EXT. MAX AND BELLA'S HOUSE - DAY

  William emerges from the house, a little ruffled from a night
  away from home, a heads off.

  EXT. NEWSAGENT - DAY

  William walks past the newsagent, heading for home.  We see,
  though he doesn't, a rack of tabloid papers, all of which seem
  to have very grainy, grabbed pictures of Anna on their front
  page.  Headlines --'Anna Stunna'-- 'It's Definitely Her!'
  and 'Scott of Pantartica.'

  INT. WILLIAM'S BATHROOM - DAY

  William is shaving.  The bell goes.  He heads out to answer it.

  EXT./INT. WILLIAM'S HOUSE -DAY

  William arrives at the door and opens it.  There stands a dark-
  glassed Anna.

        ANNA
    Hi.  Can I come in?

        WILLIAM
    Come in.

  She moves inside.  Her hair is a mess -- her eyes are tired.
  Nothing idealized.

  INT. LIVING ROOM - DAY

  The two of them.

        ANNA
    They were taken years ago -- I know
    it was... well, I was poor and it
    happens a lot -- that's not an excuse
    -- but to make things worse, it now
    appears someone was filming me as
    well.  So what was a stupid photo-
    shoot now looks like a porno film.
    And well... the pictures have been
    solid and they're everywhere.

  William shakes his head.

        ANNA
    I don't know where to go.  The hotel
    is surrounded.

        WILLIAM
    This is the place.

        ANNA
    Thank you.  I'm just in London for two
    days -- but, with your papers, it's the
    worse place to be.

  She's very shaken.

        ANNA
    These are such horrible pictures.
    They're so grainy... they make me
    look like...

        WILLIAM
    Don't think about it.  We'll sort it
    out.  Now what would you like -- tea
    ... bath...?

        ANNA
    A bath would be great.

  INT. WILLIAM'S CORRIDOR - DAY

  Spike enters through the front door.  William doesn't hear him.
  Spike is reading newspapers with the Anna pictures in it.

        SPIKE
    Christ alive... brilliant... fantastic
    .... magnificent...

  He heads up the stairs.  Opens the bathroom door, walks in.

  INT. WILLIAM'S BATHROOM - DAY

  Spike heads for the toilet -- undoes his zip...

        ANNA
    You must be Spike.

  She's in the bath.  Spike turns in shock -- and sidles out of the
  bathroom.

  INT. WILLIAM'S CORRIDOR - DAY

  Spike calms himself down.  He then opens the bathroom door
  again -- and looks in.

  INT. WILLIAM'S BATHROOM - DAY

  Anna is still lying low in the bath.

        ANNA
    Hi.

        SPIKE
    Just checking.

  INT. CORRIDOR - DAY

  Spike comes back out into the corridor.  Looks to heaven.

        SPIKE
    Thank you, God.

  INT. WILLIAM'S KITCHEN - DAY

  William and Anna at the kitchen table, eating toast, dringking
  tea.

        ANNA
    I'm really sorry about last time.  He
    just flew in -- I had no idea -- in fact,
    I had no idea if he'd ever fly in again.

        WILLIAM
    No, that's fine.  It's not often one
    has the opportunity to adios the plates
    of a major Hollywood star.  It was a
    thrill for me.
      (she smiles.  Pause)
    How is he?

        ANNA
    I don't know.  It got to the point where
    I couldn't remember any of the reasons
    I loved him.  And you... and love?

        WILLIAM
    Well, there's a question -- without
    an interesting answer.

        ANNA
    I have thought about you.

        WILLIAM
    Oh no no -- no.

  He doesn't think she has to talk about this.

        ANNA
    Just anytime I've tried to keep
    things normal with anyone normal --
    it's been a disaster.

        WILLIAM
    I appreciate that absolutely.
      (changing subject
       tactfully)
    Is that the film you're doing?

        ANNA
    Yes -- start in L.A. on Tuesday.

        WILLIAM
    Would you like me to take you through
    your lines?

        ANNA
    Would you?  It's all talk, talk, talk.

        WILLIAM
    Hand it over.  Basic plot?

        ANNA
    I'm a difficult but brilliant junior
    officer who in about twenty minutes
    will save the world from nuclear
    disaster.

        WILLIAM
    Well done you.

  EXT. TERRACE - DAY

  A little later.  They're in the thick of the script.

        WILLIAM
    'Message from command.  Would you like
    them to send in the HKs?'

        ANNA
    'No, turn over 4 TRS's and tell them we
    need radar feedback before the KFT's
    return at 19 hundred -- then inform the
    Pentagon that we'll be needing black
    star cover from ten hundred through
    12.15' -- and don't you dare say one
    word about how many mistakes I made in
    that speech or I'll pelt you with
    olives.

        WILLIAM
    'Very well, captain -- I'll pass that
    on straightaway.'

        ANNA
    'Thank you.'  How many mistake did I
    make?

        WILLIAM
    Eleven.

        ANNA
    Damn.  'And Wainwright...'

        WILLIAM
    Cartwright.

        ANNA
    'Cartwright, Wainwright, whatever
    your name is, I promised little Jimmy
    I'd be home for his birthday -- could
    you get a message through that I may
    be a little late.'

        WILLIAM
    'Certainly.  And little Johnny?'

        ANNA
    My son's name is Johnny?

        WILLIAM
    Yup.

        ANNA
    Well, get a message through to him
    too.

        WILLIAM
    Brilliant.
      (the scene's over)
    Word perfect I'd say.

        ANNA
    What do you think?

        WILLIAM
    Gripping.  It's not Jane Austen, it's
    not Henry James, but it's gripping.

        ANNA
    You think I should do Henry James
    instead?

        WILLIAM
    I'm sure you'd be great in Henry James.
    But, you know -- this writer's pretty
    damn good too.

        ANNA
    Yes -- I mean -- you never get anyone
    in 'Wings of a Dove' having the nerve
    to say 'inform the Pentagon that we
    need black star cover.'

        WILLIAM
    And I think the book is the poorer for
    it.

  Anna smiles her biggest smile of the day.  He is helping.

  INT. WILLIAM'S DINING ROOM

  Anna and William.  Sat down at table.  There's a picture
  hanging on the wall behind.

        ANNA
    I can't believe you have that picture
    on your wall.

  It is a poster of a Chagall painting of a floating wedding couple,
  with a goat as company.

        WILLIAM
    You like Chagall?

        ANNA
    I do.  It feels like how being in love
    should be.  Floating through a dark
    blue sky.

        WILLIAM
    With a goat playing a violin.

        ANNA
    Yes -- happiness wouldn't be happiness
    without a violin-playing goat.

  Spike enters with three pizzas.

        SPIKE
    Voila.  Carnival Calypso, for the
    Queen of Notting Hill -- pepperoni,
    pineapple and a little more
    pepperoni.

        ANNA
    Fantastic.

        WILLIAM
    I don't mention that Anna's a
    vegetarian, did I?

        SPIKE
      (pause)
    I have some parsnip stew from last week.
    If I just peel the skin off, it'll be
    perfect.

  INT. WILLIAM'S LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

  Later in the evening.  William and Anna on their own.  They're
  sipping coffee.  A few seconds of just co-existing.  Anna looks
  up.

        ANNA
    You've got big feet.

        WILLIAM
    Yes.  Always have had.

        ANNA
    You know what they say about men with
    big feet?

        WILLIAM
    No.  What's that?

        ANNA
    Big feet -- large shoes.

  He laughs.

  INT. WILLIAM'S LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

  A few hours later -- eating ice-cream out of the tub.

        ANNA
    The thing that's so irritating is that
    now I'm so totally fierce when it comes
    to nudity clauses.

        WILLIAM
    You actually have clauses in your
    contact about nudity?

        ANNA
    Definitely.  'You may show the dent at
    the top of the artist's buttocks -- but
    neither cheek.  In the event of a stunt
    person being used, the artist must have
    full consultation.'

        WILLIAM
    You have a stunt bottom?

        ANNA
    I could have a stunt bottom, yes.

        WILLIAM
    Would you be tempted to go for a
    slightly better bottom than your own?

        ANNA
    Definitely.  Ths is important stuff.

        WILLIAM
    It's one hell of a job.  What do you put
    on your passport?  Profession -- Mel
    Gibson's bottom.

        ANNA
    Actually, Mel does his own ass work.
    Why wouldn't he?  It's delicious.

        WILLIAM
    The ice cream or Mel Gibson's bottom?

        ANNA
    Both.

  INT. WILLIAM'S UPSTAIRS CORRIDOR - NIGHT

  They are walking up the stairs -- and stop at the top.

        ANNA
    Today has ben a good day.  Which under
    the circumstances is... unexpected.

        WILLIAM
    Well, thank you.
      (awkward pause)
    Anyway -- time for bed.  Or...
    sofa-bed.

        ANNA
    Right.

  Pause.  She leans forward, kisses him gently, then steps into
  the bedroom and closes the door.

  INT. WILLIAM'S LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

  William downstairs -- on a sofa -- under a duvet.  Eyes open.
  Thinking.  Pause and pause.

  He waits and waits -- the ultimate 'yearn.'  But nothing
  happens.  William gets off the sofa decisively.  Sits on the
  side of it.  Then gets back in again.

  Pause, pause, then... in the darkness, a stair creaks.  There's
  someone there.

        WILLIAM
      (to himself)
    Oh my God...
      (then...)
    Hello.

        SPIKE
    Hello.  I wonder if I could have a
    little word.

  He drifts round the corner, half-naked.

        WILLIAM
    Spike.

        SPIKE
    I don't want to interfere, or anything
    ... but she's split up from her boy-
    friend, that's right isn't it?

        WILLIAM
    Maybe.

        SPIKE
    And she's in your house.

        WILLIAM
    Yes.

        SPIKE
    And you get on very well.

        WILLIAM
    Yes.

        SPIKE
    Well, isn't this perhaps a good
    opportunity to... slip her one?

        WILLIAM
    Spike.  For God's sake -- she's in
    trouble -- get a grip.

        SPIKE
    Right.  Right.  You think it's the
    wrong moment.  Fair enough.
      (pause)
    Do you mind if I have a go?

        WILLIAM
    Spike!

        SPIKE
    No -- you're right.

        WILLIAM
    I'll talk to you in the morning.

        SPIKE
    Okay -- okay.  Might be too late, but
    okay.

  Back to William thinking again.  Dreamy atmosphere.  And then...
  more footsteps on the stairs.

        WILLIAM
    Oh please sod off.

        ANNA
    Okay.

        WILLIAM
    No! No.  Wait.  I... thought you were
    someone else.  I thought you were Spike.
    I'm delighted you're not.

  The darkness of the living room.  We see Anna in the shadow.

  INT. WILLIAM'S LIVING ROOM - NIGHT

  A few moments later.  William and Anna stand in the middle of
  the room.  He kisses her neck.  Then her shoulder.  What a
  miracle it is just to be able to touch this girl's skin.  Then
  he looks at her face.  That face.  He is suddenly struck by who
  it is.

        WILLIAM
    Wow.

        ANNA
    What?

  And then gets over it straight away.

        WILLIAM
    Nothing.

  And kisses her.

  INT. WILLIAM'S BEDROOM - NIGHT

  The middle of the night.  They are both asleep -- a yard apart.
  In sleep, her arm reaches out, touches his shoulder and then
  she wriggles across and re-settles herself, tenderly, right
  next to him.  He is not asleep and knows how extraordinary this
  all is.

  INT. WILLIAM'S BEDROOM - DAY

  The morning.

        WILLIAM
    It still strikes me as, well, surreal,
    that I'm allowed to see you naked.

        ANNA
    You and every person in this country.

        WILLIAM
    Oh God yes -- I'm sorry.

        ANNA
    What is it about men and nudity?
    Particularly breasts -- how can you be so
    interested in them?

        WILLIAM
    Well...

        ANNA
    No seriously.  I mean, they're just
    breasts.  Every second person in the
    world has got them...

        WILLIAM
    More than that actually, when you think
    about it.  You know, Meatloaf has a very
    nice pair...

        ANNA
    But... they're odd-looking.  They're
    for milk.  Your mum's got them.  You
    must have seen a thousand of them --
    what's the fuss about?

        WILLIAM
      (pause)
    Actually, I can't think really -- let
    me just have a quick look...

  He looks under the sheet at her breasts.

        WILLIAM
    No, beats me.

  She laughs...

        ANNA
    Rita Hayworth used to say -- 'they go to
    bed with Gilda -- they wake up with me.'
    Do you feel that?

        WILLIAM
    Who was Gilda?

        ANNA
    Her most famous part -- men went to bed
    with the dream -- and they didn't like
    it when they woke up with the reality --
    do you feel that way with me?

        WILLIAM
      (pause)
    You're lovelier this morning than you
    have ever been.

        ANNA
      (very touched)
    Oh.

  She looks at him carefully.  Then leaps out of bed.

        ANNA
    I'll be back.

  INT. WILLIAM'S BEDROOM - MORNING

  William on the bed.  The door opens.  It is Anna with a tray of
  toast and tea.

        ANNA
    Breakfast in bed.  Or lunch, or brunch.

  She heads across.  She smiles and sits on the bed.

        ANNA
    Can I stay a bit longer?

        WILLIAM
    Stay forever.

        ANNA
    Damn, I forgot the jam.

  The doorbell goes.

        ANNA
    You get the door, I'll get the jam.

  INT./EXT. WILLIAM'S CORRIDOR - DAY

  William heads down the corridor and opens the door.  Outside
  are hundreds of paparazzi -- an explosion of cameras and
  questions, of noise and light.  The press seem to fill the
  entire street.

        WILLIAM
    Jesus Christ.

  He comes back inside, snapping the door behind him.  Anna is in
  the kitchen.

        ANNA
    What?

        WILLIAM
    Don't ask.

  She heads back the corridor, with no suspicion.

        ANNA
    You're up to something...

  She thinks he's fooling around.  She opens the door, the same
  explosion.  In a split second she's inside.

        ANNA
    Oh my God.  And they got a photo of you
    dressed like that?

        WILLIAM
    Undressed like this, yes.

        ANNA
    Jesus.

  INT. WILLIAM'S KITCHEN - DAY

  Anna is on the phone.  Spike is blithely heading downstairs to
  the kitchen in just his underpants.

        SPIKE
    Morning, daring ones.

  He does a thumbs up to William -- very excited about what he knows
  was a 'result.'

        ANNA
      (on the phone)
    It's Anna.  The press are here.  No,
    there are hundreds of them.  My
    brilliant plan was not so brilliant
    after all.  Yeh, I know, I know.  Just
    get me out then.
      (she hangs up)
    Damnit.

  She heads upstairs.

        WILLIAM
    I wouldn't go outside.

        SPIKE
    Why not?

        WILLIAM
    Just take my work for it.

  The moment William goes upstairs, Spike heads for the front
  door.

  EXT. WILLIAM'S HOUSE - DAY

  From outside -- we see this scrawny bloke in the frame of the
  doorway, in his grey underpants.  A thousand photos.  Spike
  poses athletically.

  INT. WILLIAM'S CORRIDOR - DAY

  Spike closes the door and wanders along to a mirror in the hall-
  way, muttering.

        SPIKE
    How did I look?

  Inspects himself.

        SPIKE
    Not bad.  No bad at all.  Well-chosen
    briefs, I'd say.  Chicks love grey.
    Mmmmm.  Nice firm buttocks.

  INT. WILLIAM'S BEDROOM - DAY

  William enters.  He's unhappy for her.  She's almost dressed.

        WILLIAM
    How are you doing?

        ANNA
    How do you think I'm doing?

        WILLIAM
    I don't know what happened.

        ANNA
    I do.  Your furry friend thought he'd
    make a buck or two telling the papers
    where I was.

  She's packing.

        WILLIAM
    That's not true.

        ANNA
    Really?  The entire British press just
    woke up this morning and thought 'Hey --
    I know where Anna Scott is.  She's in
    that house with the blue door in Notting
    Hill.'  And then you go out in your
    goddamn underwear.

        SPIKE
      (dropping in)
    I went out in my goddamn underwear too.

        WILLIAM
    Get out, Spike.
      (he does)
    I'm so sorry.

        ANNA
    This is such a mess.  I come to you to
    protect myself against more crappy
    gossip and now I'm landed in it all
    over again.  For God's sake, I've got
    a boyfriend.

        WILLIAM
    You do?

  It's a difficult moment -- defining where they stand.

        ANNA
    As far as they're concerned I do.  And
    now tomorrow there'll be pictures of
    you in every newspapers from here to
    Timbuktu.

        WILLIAM
    I know, I know -- but... just -- let's
    stay calm...

        ANNA
    You can stay calm -- it's the perfect
    situation for you -- minimum input,
    maximum publicity.  Everyone you ever
    bump into will know.  'Well done you --
    you slept with that actress -- we've
    seen the pictures.'

        WILLIAM
    That's spectacularly unfair.

        ANNA
    Who knows, it may even help business.
    Buy a boring book about Egypt from the
    guy who screwed Anna Scott.

  She heads out.

  INT. STAIRS/LIVING ROOM - DAY

        WILLIAM
    Now stop.  Stop.  I beg you -- calm down.
    Have a cup of tea.

        ANNA
    I don't want a goddamn cup of tea.  I
    want to go home.

  The doorbell goes.

        WILLIAM
    Spike, check who that is... and for
    God's sake put some clothes on.

  Spike leans merrily out of the window.

        SPIKE
    Looks like a chauffeur to me.

  INT. WILLIAM'S KITCHEN/CORRIDOR - DAY

  They move from the kitchen into the corridor.

        ANNA
    And remember -- Spike owes you an
    expensive dinner.  Or holiday --
    depending if he's got the brains to get
    the going rate on betrayal.

        WILLIAM
    That's not true.  And wait a minute...
    this is crazy behavior.  Can't we just
    laugh about this?  Seriously -- in the
    huge sweep of things, this stuff
    doesn't matter.

        SPIKE
    What he's going to say next is -- there
    are people starving in the Sudan.

        WILLIAM
    Well, there are.  And we don't need to
    go anywhere near that far.  My best
    friend slipped -- she slipped down-
    stairs, cracked her back and she's in a
    wheelchair for the rest of her life.
    All I'm asking for is a normal amount
    of perspective.

        ANNA
    You're right: of course, you're right.
    It's just that I've dealt with this
    garbage for ten years now -- you've had
    it for ten minutes.  Our perspectives
    are different.

        WILLIAM
    I mean -- today's newspapers will be
    lining tomorrow's waste paper bins.

        ANNA
    Excuse me?

        WILLIAM
    Well, you know -- it's just one day.
    Today's papers will all have been
    thrown away tomorrow.

        ANNA
    You really don't get it.  This story
    gets filed.  Every time anyone writes
    anything about me -- they'll dig up
    these photos.  Newspapers last forever.
    I'll regret this forever.

  He takes this in.  That's the end.

        WILLIAM
    Right.  Fine.  I will do the opposite,
    if it's all right by you -- and always be
    glad you came.  But you're right -- you
    probably better go.

  She looks at him.  The doorbell goes again.  She opens the door.
  Massive noise and photos.  Outside are her people, including
  Karen, a chauffeur, two bodyguards.  And then the door is shut
  and they're all gone.  Silence.

  INT. WILLIAM'S KITCHEN/CORRIDOR - DAY

  Spike and William sitting there.  Pause.

        WILLIAM
    Was it you?

        SPIKE
    I suppose I might have told one or two
    people down the pub.

        WILLIAM
    Right.

  He puts his head in his hands.  It's over now.

  EXT. LONDON - DAY

  As full, sad music plays -- William begins to walk through
  Notting Hill.

  This walk takes six months... as he walks, the seasons actually
  and magically change, from summer, through autumn and winter,
  back into spring...

  First it is summer -- summer fruits and flowers -- a six-month
  pregnant woman -- Honey with another leather-jacket boyfriend.

  As he walks on the rain starts to fall -- he turns up his coat
  collar -- umbrellas appear.  Followed by winter coats --
  chestnuts roasting -- Christmas trees on sale and the first hint
  of snow.

  Then he comes to Blenheim Crescent, which is startling snowscape,
  for the hundred yard, right across Ladbroke Grove.

  By the time he reaches the purple cafe, the snow is melting and
  in a few yards, it is spring again.  He passes Honey again --
  arguing with her boyfriend, walking away tearful.  Then turns
  past 'the pregnant woman' -- now holding her three-month baby.
  The camera holds on her.

  INT. BOOKSHOP - DAY

  A grey day in the bookshop.  Martin and William.  As ever.  A
  feeling that things in there ever change.

  Ten seconds pass.  Honey rushes in.  Spike, still feeling in
  disgrace, comes in with her but lingers in the doorway.

        HONEY
    Have we got something for you.
    Something which will make you love me so
    much you'll want to hug me every single
    day for the rest of my life.

        WILLIAM
    Blimey.  What's that?

        HONEY
    The phone number of Anna Scott's agent
    in London and her agent in New York.
    You can ring her.  You think about her
    all the time -- now you can ring her!

        WILLIAM
    Well, thanks, that's great.

        HONEY
    It is great, isn't it.  See you tonight.
    Hey, Marty-- sexy cardy.

  And she rushes out.  William looks at the piece of paper, folds
  it and then places it gently in the garbage bin.

  INT. TONY'S RESTAURANT - NIGHT

  Bella bangs a spoon on a wine bottle.  All the friends are
  gathered in the restaurant.

        BELLA
    I have a little speech to make -- I won't
    stand up because I can't... be bothered.
    Exactly a year ago today, this man here
    started the finest restaurant in London.

        TONY
    Thank you very much.

        BELLA
    Unfortunately -- no one ever came to eat
    here.

        TONY
    A tiny hiccough.

        BELLA
    And so we must face the fact that from
    next week, we have to find somewhere
    near to eat.

  Tony's brave face breaks.  The dream is over.

        BELLA
    I just want to say to Tony -- don't take
    it personally.  The more I think about
    things, the more I see no rhyme or reason
    in life -- no one knows why some things
    work out, and some things don't -- why
    some of us get lucky -- and some of us...

        BERNIE
    ... get fired.

        BELLA
    No!

        BERNIE
    Yes, they're shifting the whole outfit
    much more towards the trading side --
    and of course...
      (he owns up)
    I was total crap.

  They're all rather stunned.

        TONY
    So we go down together!  A toast to
    Bernie -- the worst stockbroker in the
    whole world!

  They toast him.

        HONEY
    Since it's an evening of announcements
    ... I've also got one, Ahm... I've
    decided to get engaged.

  Total bewilderment from the others.

        HONEY
    I've found myself a nice, slightly odd
    looking bloke who I know is going to
    make me happy for the rest of my life.

  Special cut to Bernie -- the shot shows he had special feelings
  for Honey.

        WILLIAM
    Wait a minute -- I'm your brother and I
    don't know anything about this.

        MAX
    Is it someone we know?

        HONEY
    Yes.  I will keep you informed.

  As she sits down, Honey leans towards Spike and whispers.

        HONEY
    By the way -- it's you.

        SPIKE
    Me?

        HONEY
    Yes.  What do you think?

        SPIKE
    Well, yes.  Groovy.

        MAX
    Any more announcements?

        WILLIAM
    Yes -- I feel I must apologize to
    everyone for my behavior for the last
    six months.  I have, as you know, been
    slightly down in the mouth.

        MAX
    There's an understatement.  There are
    dead people on better form.

        WILLIAM
    But I wish to make it clear I've turned
    a corner and henceforward intend to be
    impressively happy.

  INT. TONY'S RESTAURANT - NIGHT

  Two hours later.  They've had a very good time.  There's been a
  chocolate cake.  Lots of alcohol.  Tony is playing 'Blue Moon'
  on the piano, and Bernie joins him, singing.

  At one table Bella and Honey sit -- beer and wine on the table.

        BELLA
    I'm really horribly drunk.

  Elsewhere, Max an William are relaxed together.

        MAX
    So -- you've laid the ghost.

        WILLIAM
    I believe I have.

        MAX
    Don't give a damn about the famous girl.

        WILLIAM
    No, don't think I do.

        MAX
    Which means you won't be distracted by
    the fact that she's back in London,
    grasping her Oscar, and to be found
    filming most days on Hampstead Heath.

  He puts down a copy of the 'Evening Standard' with a picture of
  Anna on its cover.

        WILLIAM
      (immediate gloom)
    Oh God no.

        MAX
    So not over her, in fact.

  EXT. HAMPSTEAD HEATH - DAY

  Cut to the wide sweep of Hampstead Heath.  William entirely
  alone.  He marches up a hill... goes over the crest of it -- and
  sees a huge film crew and hundreds of extras in front of the
  radiant white of Kenwood House, with its lawn and its lakes.

  EXT. KENWOOD HOUSE - DAY

  Now closer to the house, William approaches a barrier -- where
  he is himself approached.

        SECURITY
    Can I help you?

        WILLIAM
    Yes -- I was looking for Anna Scott...

        SECURITY
    Does she know you're coming?

        WILLIAM
    No, no.  She doesn't.

        SECURITY
    I'm afraid I can't really let you
    through then, sir.

        WILLIAM
    Oh right.  I mean, I am a friend -- I'm
    not a lunatic but -- no, you basically...

        SECURITY
    ... can't let you through.

  At that moment -- thirty yards away, William sees trailer door
  open.  Out of it comes Anna -- looking extraordinary -- in a
  velvet dress; full, beautiful make-up; rich, extravagant hair.
  She has a necessary cluster of people about her.  Hair, make-up,
  costume and the third assistant who has collected her.

  She walks a few yards, and then casually turns her head.  And
  sees him.  Her face registers not jut surprise, certainly not a
  simple smile.  His being there is a complicated thing.
  Cut back to him.  He does a small wave.  She pauses as the whole
  paraphernalia of the upcoming scene passes between them.  The
  movie divides them.  But then she begins to walk through it, and
  followed by her cluster, she makes her way towards him.  When
  she reaches him, the security guard stands back a pace, and her
  people hold back.  She doesn't really know what to say...

        ANNA
    This is certainly... ah...

        WILLIAM
    I only found out you were here
    yesterday.

        ANNA
    I was going to ring... but... I didn't
    think you'd want to...

  The third assistant is under pressure.

        THIRD
    Anna.

  She looks around.  The poor third is nervous -- and the first is
  approaching.

        ANNA
      (to William)
    It's not going very well -- and it's
    our last day.

        WILLIAM
    Absolutely -- you're clearly very busy.

        ANNA
    But... wait... there are things to say.

        WILLIAM
    Okay.

        ANNA
    Drink tea -- there's lots of tea.

  She is swept away, four people touching her hair and costume.

        KAREN
    Come and have a look...

  EXT. KENWOOD PARK - DAY

  As they make towards the set...

        KAREN
    Are you a fan of Henry James?

        WILLIAM
    This is Henry James film?

  EXT. KENWOOD HOUSE - DAY

  A complicated shot is about to happen -- with waves of extras --
  and a huge moving crane.  They end up next to the sound desk.

        KAREN
    This is Harry -- he'll give you a pair of
    headphones so you can hear the dialogue.

  Harry the sound man is a pleasant, fifty-year-old balding
  fellow.  He hands him the headphones.

        HARRY
    Here we go.  The volume control is on
    the side.

        WILLIAM
    That's great.

  William, the headphones on, surveys the scene -- the cluster is
  a full 100 yards from the action, to allow a gracious sweeping
  wide-shot.  He watches Anna.  She is with her co-star in the
  Henry James film -- let's call him James.

        JAMES
    We are living in cloudcuckooland --
    we'll never get this done today.

        ANNA
    We have to.  I've got to be in New York
    on Thursday.

        JAMES
    Oh, stop showing off.

  He studies an actress a few yards to the left.

        JAMES
    God, that's an enormous arse.

        ANNA
    I'm not listening.

        JAMES
    No, but seriously -- it's not fair -- so
    many tragic young teenagers with
    anorexia -- and that girl has an arse
    she could perfectly well share round
    with at least ten other women -- and
    still be beg-bottomed.

        ANNA
    I said I'm not listening -- and I think,
    looking at something that firm, you and
    your droopy little excuse for an 'arse'
    would be well-advised to keep quiet.

  Back by the desk, William is listening and laughs.  That's his
  girl.  Anna prepares.

        ANNA
    So I ask you when you're going to tell
    everyone, and you say...?

        JAMES
    'Tomorrow will be soon enough.'

        ANNA
    And then I... right.

        JAMES
    Who was that rather difficult chap you
    were talking to on the way up?

        ANNA
    Oh... no one... no one.  Just some...
    guy from the past.  I don't know what
    he's doing here.  Bit of an awkward
    situation.

  EXT. HAMPSTEAD HEATH - DAY

  Cut back to William -- he has heard.

        WILLIAM
    Of course.

  He takes off the headphones and puts them gently down.

        WILLIAM
    Thank you.

        HARRY
    Anytime.

  William walks away.  The moment of hope is gone.  He couldn't
  have had a clear reminder.

  INT. WILLIAM'S LIVING ROOM - EVENING

  William is emptying Anna Scott videos into a box.

        SPIKE
    What's going on?

        WILLIAM
    I'm going to throw out these old videos.

        SPIKE
    No.  You can't bin these.  They're
    classics.  I'm not allowing this.

        WILLIAM
    Right -- let's talk about rent...

        SPIKE
    Let me help.  We don't want all this
    shit cluttering up our lives.

  INT. BACKROOM OF THE BOOKSHOP - DAY

  The next day.  William is hard at work, doing the accounts in a
  dark small room with files in it.  Martin pops his head in.

        MARTIN
    I have to disturb you when you're
    cooking the books, but there's a
    delivery.

        WILLIAM
    Martin, can't you just deal with this
    yourself?

        MARTIN
    But it's not for the shop.  It's for you.

        WILLIAM
    Okay.  Tell me, would I have to pay a wet
    rag as much as I pay you?

  They head out, Martin behind him, incomprehensively rubbing
  his hands -- he's in a very good mood.

  INT. BOOKSHOP - DAY

  William enters -- and there stands Anna -- in a simple blue
  skirt and top.

        ANNA
    Hi.

        WILLIAM
    Hello.

        ANNA
    You disappeared.

        WILLIAM
    Yes -- I'm sorry -- I had to leave... I
    didn't want to disturb you.

        ANNA
    Well... how have you been?

        WILLIAM
    Fine.  Everything much the same.  When
    they change the law Spike and I will
    marry immediately.  Whereas you...
    I've watched in wonder.  Awards, glory
    ...

        ANNA
    Oh no.  It's all nonsense, believe me.
    I had no idea how much nonsense it all
    was -- but nonsense it all is...
      (she's nervous)
    Well, yesterday was our last day
    filming and so I'm just off -- but I
    brought you this from home, and...

  It's quite a big wrapped parcel, flat -- 3 foot by 4 foot,
  leaning against a bookshelf.

        ANNA
    I thought I'd give it to you.

        WILLIAM
    Thank you.  Shall I...

        ANNA
    No, don't open it yet -- I'll be
    embarrassed.

        WILLIAM
    Okay -- well, thank you.  I don't know
    what it's for.  But thank you anyway.

        ANNA
    I actually had it in my apartment in New
    York and just thought you'd... but,
    when it came to it, I didn't know how to
    call you... having behaved so... badly,
    twice.  So it's been just sitting in the
    hotel.  But then... you came, so I
    figured... the thing is... the thing is
    ...

        WILLIAM
    What's the thing?

  Then the door pings.  In walks the annoying customer, Mr. Smith.

        WILLIAM
    Don't even think about it.  Go away
    immediately.

  Mr. Smith is taken aback and therefore completely obedient.

        MR. SMITH
    Right.  Sorry.

  And he leaves.

        WILLIAM
    You were saying...

        ANNA
    Yes.  The thing is... I have to go away
    today but I wondered, if I didn't,
    whether you might let me see you a bit...
    or, a lot maybe... see if you could...
    like me again.

  Pause as William takes this in.

        WILLIAM
    But yesterday... that actor asked you
    who I was... and you just dismissed me
    out of hand... I heard -- you had a
    microphone... I had headphones.

        ANNA
    You expect me to tell the truth about my
    life to the most indiscreet man in
    England?

  Martin edges up.

        MARTIN
    Excuse me -- it's your mother on the
    phone.

        WILLIAM
    Can you tell her I'll ring her back.

        MARTIN
    I actually tried that tack -- but she
    said you said that before and it's been
    twenty-four hours, and her foot that
    was purple is now a sort of blackish
    color...

        WILLIAM
    Okay -- perfect timing as ever -- hold
    the fort for a second will you, Martin?

  Martin is left with Anna.

        MARTIN
    Can I just say, I thought 'Ghost' was a
    wonderful film.

        ANNA
    Is that right?

        MARTIN
    Yes... I've always wondered what
    Patrick Swayze is like in real life.

        ANNA
    I can't say I know Patrick all that
    well.

        MARTIN
    Oh dear.  He wasn't friendly during the
    filming?

        ANNA
    Well, no -- I'm sure he was friendly --
    to Demi Moore -- who acted with him in
    'Ghost.'

  She's kind in here, not sarcastic.

        MARTIN
    Oh right.  Right.  Sorry.  Always been
    a bit of an ass.

  William returns a little uneasy.

        MARTIN
    Anyway... it's lovely to meet you.  I'm
    a great fan of yours.  And Demi's, of
    course.

  Martin leaves them.

        WILLIAM
    Sorry about that.

        ANNA
    That's fine.  There's always a pause
    when the jury goes out to consider its
    verdict.

  She's awaiting an answer.

        WILLIAM
    Anna.  Look -- I'm a fairly level-
    headed bloke.  Not often in and out of
    love.  But...

  He can't really express what he feels.

        WILLIAM
    ... can I just say 'no' to your kind
    request and leave it at that?

        ANNA
    ... Yes, that's fine.  Of course.  I...
    you know... of course... I'll just...
    be getting along then... nice to see
    you.

        WILLIAM
    The truth is...

  He feels he must explain.

        WILLIAM
    ... with you, I'm in real danger.  It
    took like a perfect situation, apart
    from that foul temper of yours -- but my
    relatively inexperienced heart would,
    I fear, not recover if I was once again
    ... cast aside, which I would
    absolutely expect to be.  There are too
    many pictures of you everywhere, too
    many films.  You'd go and I'd be...
    well, buggered, basically.

        ANNA
    I see.
      (pause)
    That reality is a real 'no,' isn't it?

        WILLIAM
    I live in Notting Hill.  You live in
    Beverly Hills.  Everyone in the world
    knows who you are.  My mother has
    trouble remembering my name.

        ANNA
    Okay.  Fine.  Fine.  Good decision.

  Pause.

        ANNA
    The fame thing isn't really real, you
    know.  Don't forget -- I'm also just a
    girl.  Standing in front of a boy.
    Asking him to love her.

  Pause.  She kisses him on the cheek.

        ANNA
    Bye.

  Then turns and leaves.  Leaving him.

  INT. TONY'S RESTAURANT - DAY

  The restaurant is in the middle of being deconstructed.  The
  pictures are gone off the walls -- a kettle on a long extension
  lead is on the bare table behind.  They're all sitting there.

        WILLIAM
    What do you think?  Good move?

        HONEY
    Good move: when all is said and done,
    she's nothing special.  I saw her
    taking her pants off and I definitely
    glimpsed some cellulite down there.

        BELLA
    Good decision.  All actresses are mad
    as snakes.

        WILLIAM
    Tony -- what do you think?

        TONY
    Never met her, never want to.

        WILLIAM
    Brilliant.  Max?

        MAX
    Absolutely.  Never trust a vegetarian.

        WILLIAM
    Great.  Excellent.  Thanks.

  Spike enters.

        SPIKE
    I was called and I came.  What's up?

        HONEY
    William has just turned down Anna Scott.

        SPIKE
    You daft prick!

  Bella is casually looking at the painting that sits beside
  William.  It is the original of the Chagall, the poster of which
  was on his wall.

        BELLA
    This painting isn't the original, is
    it?

        WILLIAM
    Yes, I think that one may be.

        BERNIE
    But she said she wanted to go out with
    you?

        WILLIAM
    Yes -- sort of...

        BERNIE
    That's nice.

        WILLIAM
    What?

        BERNIE
    Well, you know, anybody saying they
    want to go out with you is... pretty
    great... isn't it...

        WILLIAM
    It was sort of sweet actually -- I mean,
    I know she's an actress and all that, so
    she can deliver a line -- but she said
    that she might be as famous as can be --
    but also... that she was just a girl,
    standing in front of a boy, asking him
    to love her.

  They take in the line.  It totally reverses their attitudes.
  A pause.

        WILLIAM
    Oh sod a dog.  I've made the wrong
    decision, haven't I?

  They look at him.  Spike does a big nod.

        WILLIAM
    Max, how fast is your car?

  EXT. TONY'S RESTAURANT - DAY

  Max's car arrives in the street outside.  They pile into the
  car.

        MAX
    If anyone gets in our way -- we have
    small nuclear devices.

        BERNIE
    And we intend to use them!

        MAX
    Where's Bella?

        HONEY
    She's not coming.

        MAX
    Sod that.  Bernie -- in the back!

  He shoots out of his door, rushes round and grabs Bella out of
  the chair.

        MAX
    Come on, babe.

  EXT./INT. CAR. STANLEY CRESCENT/NOTTING HILL GATE - DAY

  Max's car is shooting up Stanley Crescent.  We are inside and
  outside the car.

        BELLA
    Where are you going?

        MAX
    Down Kensington Church Street, then
    Knightsbridge, then Hyde Park Corner.

        BELLA
    Crazy.  Go along Bayswater...

        HONEY
    That's right -- then Park Lane.

        BERNIE
    Or you could go right down to Cromwell
    Road, and left.

        WILLIAM
    No!

  Suddenly the car slams to a halt.

        MAX
    Stop right there!  I will decide the
    route.  All right?

        ALL
    All right.

        MAX
    James Bond never has to put up with this
    sort of shit.

  EXT. PICCADILLY - DAY

  The car turns illegally right across Piccadilly the wrong way
  down a one-way street and ends up outside the Ritz.  William
  sprints into the hotel.  Bernie follows.

        BERNIE
    Bloody hell, this is fun.

  IT. RITZ LOBBY - DAY

        WILLIAM
    Is Miss Scott staying here?

  It is the same man.

        RITZ MAN
    No, sir.

        WILLIAM
    How about Miss Flintstone?

        RITZ MAN
          No, sir.

        WILLIAM
    Or Bambi... or, I don't know, Beavis or
    Butthead?

  Man shakes his head.

        RITZ MAN
    No, sir.

        WILLIAM
    Right.  Right.  Fair enough.  Thanks.

  He turns despondent and takes two steps when the Ritz Man stops
  him in his tracks.

        RITZ MAN
    There was a Miss Pocahontas in room 126
    -- but she checked out an hour ago.  I
    believe she's holding a press
    conference at The Savoy before flying to
    America.

  William is very grateful.  He kisses the Ritz Man.  Bernie's also
  gratuful.  He kisses him too.

        BERNIE
    We have lift off!!

  A Japanese guest assumes this is the way to behave and the Ritz
  Man gets kissed a third time.

  EXT. LONDON STREET - DAY

  The car speeds through London.  It gets totally stuck at a
  junction where no one will let them in.

        SPIKE
    Bugger this for a bunch of bananas.

  He gets out of the car and boldly stops the traffic coming in the
  opposite direction.  Our car shoots past him.

        SPIKE
    Go!

  They leave him behind.  Honey leans out the window and shouts...

        HONEY
    You're my hero.

  Spike waves wildly -- he loses concentration and is very nearly
  hit by a car.

  EXT. THE SAVOY - DAY

  They pull to a stop.  William leaps out.

        MAX
    Go!

  INT. THE SAVOY - DAY

  William rushes up to the main desk.

        WILLIAM
    Excuse me, where's the press
    conference?

        MAN AT SAVOY
    Are you an accredited member of the
    press?

        WILLIAM
    Yes...

  He flashes a card.

        MAN AT SAVOY
    That's a Blockbuster video membership
    card, sir.

        WILLIAM
    That's right... I work for their in-
    house magazine.
      (mimes quotation marks)
    'Movies are our business.'

        MAN AT SAVOY
    I'm sorry, sir...

  Honey shoots into shot, pushing Bella's chair.

        BELLA
    He's with me.

        MAN AT SAVOY
    And you are?

        BELLA
    Writing an article about how London
    hotels treat people in wheelchairs.

        MAN AT SAVOY
    Of course, madam.  It's in the
    Lancaster Room.  I'm afraid you're very
    late.

        HONEY
      (to William)
    Run!

  INT. SAVOR ROOM - DAY

  William runs, searching.  At last finds the room, and enters.

  INT. LANCASTER ROOM - DAY

  Huge room -- full of press.  Row after row of journalists,
  cameras at the front, TV cameras at the back.  Anna clearly
  gives press conferences very rarely, because this one is
  positively presidential.  She sits at a table at the end of the
  room, beside Karen: on her other side is Jeremy, the PR boss,
  firmly marshalling the questions.

        JEREMY
    Yes... You -- Dominic.

        QUESTIONER 1
    How much longer are you staying in the
    UK then?

        ANNA
    No time at all.  I fly out tonight.

  She's in a slightly melancholic and therefore honest mood.

        JEREMY
    Which is why we have to round it up now.
    Final questions.

  He points at a journalist he knows.

        QUESTIONER  2
    Is your decision to take a year off
    anything to do with the rumours about
    Jeff and his present leading lady?

        ANNA
    Absolutely not.

        QUESTIONER 2
    Do you believe the rumours?

        ANNA
    It's really not my business any more.
    Though I will say, from my experience,
    that rumours about Jeff... do tend to
    be true.

  They love that answer, and all scribble in their note books.
  Next question comes from someone straight right next to
  William.

        QUESTIONER 3
    Last time you were here, there were some
    fairly graphic photographs of you and a
    young English guy -- so what happened
    there?

        ANNA
    He was just a friend -- I think we're
    still friends.

        JEREMY
    Yes, the gentleman in the pink shirt.

  He is pointing straight at William, who has his hand up.

        WILLIAM
    Yes -- Miss Scott -- are there any
    circumstances in which you two might be
    more than just friends?

  Anna sees who it is asking.

        ANNA
    I hoped there might be -- but no, I'm
    assured there aren't.

        WILLIAM
    And what would you say...

        JEREMY
    No, it's just one question per person.

        ANNA
    No, let him... ask away.  You were
    saying?

        WILLIAM
    Yes, I just wondered whether if it
    turned out that this... person...

        OTHER JOURNALIST
      (to William)
    His name is Thacker.

        WILLIAM
    Thanks.  I just wondered if Mr. Thacker
    realized he'd been a daft prick and got
    down on his knees and begged you to
    reconsider, whether you would...
    reconsider.

  We cut to Max, Bella, Bernie and Honey, all watching.  Then back
  to Anna.

        ANNA
    Yes, I'm pretty sure I would.

        WILLIAM
    That's very good news.  The readers of
    'Horse and Hound' will be absolutely
    delighted.

  Anna whispers something to Jeremy.

        JEREMY
    Dominic -- if you'd like to ask your
    question again?

        QUESTIONER 1
    Yes -- Anna -- how long are you
    intending to stay here in Britain?

  Pause.  Anna looks up at William.  He nods.

        ANNA
    Indefinitely.

  They both smile -- suddenly the press gets what's going on --
  music -- noise -- they all turn and flash, flash, flash photos
  of William.  Max and Bella kiss.  Bernie kisses a total stranger.
  Spike finally makes it -- he's bright red from running.

        SPIKE
    What happened?

        HONEY
    It was good.

  Honey hugs him.  It's a new experience for Spike.

  Cut to William's face -- flash after flash -- still looking at
  Anna.  They are both smiling.

  INT./EXT. THE HEMPEL ZEN GARDEN WITH MARQUEEN - DAY

  Anna and William at their wedding -- they kiss and walk into the
  crowd.

  Honey, a bridesmaid in peach satin -- she is surrounded by at
  least four other bridesmaids, all under five.

  Nearby, Tony standing, glowing, beside his fabulous,
  pyramidical wedding cake.

  William's mother is not quite happy with how he's looking.  She
  tries to brush his hair.

  Max, dressed in the most devastating Bond-like white tuxedo is
  dancing with Anna -- thrilled.  He does a rather flashy little
  move.  Cut to Bella who is watching and laughing.

  Martin, in an awkward tweed suit, is jiggling to the beat of a
  song, entirely happy in the corner.

  EXT. LEICESTER SQUARE - NIGHT

  A huge premier -- screaming crowds -- Anna and William get out
  of the car, she holding his hand --  looking ultimately gorgeous
  -- he in a black tie that doesn't quite fit.  He's startled.

  EXT. GARDEN - DAY

  A pretty green communal garden.  Children are playing, watched
  by mothers, one of whom holds a new baby in a papoose.  A very
  old couple wander along slowly.

  A small tai chi group moves mysteriously.  And as the camera
  glides, it passes a couple sitting on a single, simple wooden
  bench overlooking the garden.  He is reading, she is just
  looking out, totally relaxed, holding his hand, pregnant.  It
  is William and Anna.

        THE END

  --------------------------------------------------------------

Notting Hill



Writers :   Richard Curtis
Genres :   Comedy  Romance  Drama


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