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Hollywood — First TDays on the Movie Lot stirred to action only by telephonic vibrations. However, his expression lightened. We hadn't tricked him that time. " Mr Von Sternberg's on stage," he said. " I know," I answered, " but he left word that we were to come out to him there." " Tell that to the Horse Marines," said his face. " That is an old one." But his voice only answered mechanically: " Got no 'thority t'pass you through t'Mist Von Sternberg on th'set." " But Mr Von Sternberg said he would leave word." " Mr Von Sternberg got no 'thority have you passed through t'him on t'set." " But do you mean to say " I was beginning. " Got no 'thority," he repeated. His face was still fixed in its expression, but the gleam had intensified; he was up to our game, yes, he was. " Well, then," said Jo, " ask for Mr Ornitz." Once more the telephone stirred him to action. Gloomily he made out the pink slips, but as he handed them to us he added threateningly: " That don't give you 'thority to go on t'sets, mind." An apprentice watch-dog escorted us to the Stenographic Department and along the corridor. Behind the door we could hear the typewriters chattering as the hired authors were tearing romance to pieces. Romance past, present, and future. Here they were treating the world's masterpieces like newly plucked grapes, tossing them on to the pressing floor, squeezing out their juices, redistilling them, flavouring them anew, making the fine wines of past genius into a movie cocktail. Oh for one new movie plot! ... Oh to think of something that nobody has thought of before ! Oh to be able to make one of the twenty-three possible dramatic situations look like a twenty-fourth ! But reflect, only twenty-three dramatic