Episode 20. Jane was steaming out a gown that was draping, gathered, a form fitting sheath with a train and veil that looked like it had been stored pristinely, waiting for this day, since the 1930s. “Madeleine Vionnet,” Jane explained, “she did this for my grandmother.”

Chapter 18 begins with a quote from Bette Davis:

I’d marry again if I found a man who had fifteen million dollars, would sign over half to me, and guarantee that he’d be dead within a year.

On a Saturday following the first week of shooting, I woke, and for a few brief moments didn’t know how old I was, what house I was in, where my parents were, if I was married, or had a child; I was just Billie, waking. Light was streaming into the windows, and I felt buoyant, rising, free. I stretched. I filled my lungs and splayed my fingers, watching the wavering silhouette of a branch on the illuminated bright white weave of the curtains — just beyond my reach — and then with a tangible rush and cognitive snap I was anchored again in my body, three decades of life accounted for, and a son asleep across the hall. Film hours can do odd things to your brain.


Subscribe to Podcast