Lilia! Script Lines
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Favorite Lines from Lilia!

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“I'm working at City Center in the lost and found office.”  (Lilia's answer to “What do you do between pictures?” on WOR radio the day of her Academy Award nomination)
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“All my life I wanted to be an actress.  But I never dared tell my parents.  To them acting was like prostitution.” 
-   [STEPHEN UNDERWOOD]
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“How does one explain to the average person the power of theatre to inspire, to transform lives, the significance?”
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“No, Mama. God is with all people.”      
- [MARTIN SKALA]             and              [DAVID HALL]
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“You call that ruling?  I call it muddling through.”
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“Darling, don’t suck your thumb!  It’s a very bad habit.  Do you know what the word 'habit' means?”
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“Your grandmother had great problems with her teeth.  They were knocked out by a seesaw and now I wear these machines in my mouth.”
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“The little princess has all good habits.  She is kind to her sister.  She listens to everything that her mommy and her daddy and her grandmother tell her. She would never suck her thumb.”
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“I was not educated to be a refugee.”
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“One chooses a profession very much the way one chooses a husband.  One doesn’t know what one gets into until it’s too late.”
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“But, I may say, that all things are possible to God.”
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“Very often newspaper reporters ask me, 'Miss Skala, how is it that you were on Broadway two years after arriving in the United States, when you didn’t even know English!?'  And you know – I won’t tell them, because the story is unbelievable and I wouldn’t want them to think I am a storyteller.”
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“What am I thinking?  (Glancing around)  'Now that girl should probably lose a little bit of weight.  And that one – the legs are much too heavy.  And that one the skirt is too short - oh my goodness.'  I am criticizing!  And yet here I sit waiting for God to perform some kind of miracle for me and introduce me to Mr. Begley.”
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“I will think loving thoughts. And preferably Godlike thoughts - which is very hard to do.  Have you ever tried?  Ja!  You know.  Even for two minutes it’s almost impossible.  But, I try.”

- [JEAN BURGDORFF]            and            - [ROBIN JONES]
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“I am convinced that I will meet Mr. Begley.  Because the motivation of the friend who has sent me is unselfish love.  Desire to help.”
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“[Libby:] I tried to make [the clay lion's] head go straight, but it kept falling over. [Lilia:] No, that's what gives him movement and life. You see? He's got his head cocked, waiting for his supper to come.”            -   [STEVEN MAY]
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“The talents God gives us, we must improve.”
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“I admit that I did play a nun and a nurse on the first episode of Ironside.  After all, it was in the shadow of Lilies of the Field.”
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“She starts another sales pitch and I say, no.  I can see she tries to talk herself into the idea.”
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“I love subways –  And I ride subways.  I do not use taxis.”
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“I am so impressed with myself that I say, 'NO!' to a million dollars.  Of course, after taxes it comes down to $400,000.”
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“I’ve reached the point in my career where I know I have a God-given talent, and I want to give what is important to me.”
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“Libby darling, your nose is much too large for your face.”
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“…pinch the nose.  That way it grows more narrow.”
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“I know why it grew so big. It’s because you picked it.  You didn’t know, but I watched you when you were a little girl.  That enlarges the nostrils.  Pinching will work the reverse action as picking.  At least it doesn’t grow bigger.”
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“Fortunately, the proportions in a woman’s face change as she grows older. For example, you will find that you look very different in your twenties than you do now.  Thank God!”
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“Why don’t you give that sweater to me?”
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“Do you love me?”
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“I knew you didn’t learn it. Darling, you don’t have the thoughts behind what you are saying with those lines.  You don’t know what you’re talking about.  This girl Viola - she thinks her brother has drowned, she is grieving, she is confused. She doesn’t know why she has the ring(Realizing) Oh! I’ll do the thoughts.  You do the lines. One by one. “ (Lilia coaching Libby as Viola in Twelfth Night)
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“You see, this is what I mean when I say you must work.  You must go over every line a hundred times until you memorize the thoughts behind them. It takes patience, discipline and trust.  Do you have those things?”
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“You can’t be spontaneous unless you know the material, so that you can say it in your sleep. What do the words sound like?  What do they mean?  Why does the writer choose these exact words?  Do you have a Webster? Look it up, then.”
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“Learning is very much like prayer. It requires tremendous listening.”                              - [GRACE POLK]
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“Imagine. We came to this country with nothing.  Nothing.  Like this girl Viola. She has to employ herself as a servant with this man Orsino or she can’t survive.  I worked behind a machine - day in, day out, day in, day out - the same movement over and over again.  Do you know what that was like after I had been a stage star in Vienna?  The first female architect in all of Austria?  To go to that menial work.  That’s what it’s like for her. Now she’s thrown this ring by a servant, who spits on her practically. People practically spat on me!” 
- [JOANNE JOSEPH]
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“That’s what I mean when I say you must work.  You don’t know what that is. Forget about acting. I suggest you be a sculptor.”
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“Puppet Theatre. Are they union?”        -  [STEVEN MAY]
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“A hotel for $30 a night? A flophouse costs more.”
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“Why do you accept these substandard conditions for yourself?  Come back to New York to stay. There is no reason why you can’t start out starring on Broadway.  I did it.”
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“I admit I am ambitious for you.  You have many talents that could contribute to the betterment of the world, with God’s help.  In Deuteronomy it is written, ‘the Lord shall make thee the head, and not the tail.  And thou shalt be above only.  Thou shalt not be beneath.’  That is a promise.  Shoot for the stars.  Our capacities are limitless.  Nothing is too high or too far.”
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“I know.  You listen, and you listen, and then you do exactly as you like.  I don’t know why you ask my advice.”
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“Darling.  I have something for you.  Your sweater.  I never wore it.”
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“I really must watch my thinking.”
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“Laughing is important. People need to laugh.”
- [LLOYD AND JUNE MAY]
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“What occurs to me is that if I were to deliver this obscene Freudian interpretation of a dream with a certain tongue-in-cheek attitude, it could be funny and that would take the sting away.”
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“David Mamet says, ‘Yes, Freudian professors often use jokes to illustrate points.  I’ll write you a new scene.  With laughs.’   Thank God!”
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“A few days later, I get the new scene.  In the middle of my speech is a dirty joke, which to me isn’t funny. But, I learn it.”
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“What is the difference between a diplomat and a lady? When a diplomat says, ‘Yes,’ he means ‘Perhaps.’ When he says, ‘Perhaps,’ he means, ‘No.’ But if he says, ‘No,’ he’s no diplomat. When a lady says, ‘No,’ she means, ‘Perhaps.’  When she says, ‘Perhaps,’ she means, ‘Yes.’  But if she says, ‘Yes,’ she’s no lady.”
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“When I get back to New York, the producer Mike Hausman calls me and says, ‘Lilia, when I saw the rushes, I laughed and David Mamet thanked me for getting you.’ Of course, they cut that scene from the movie.”
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“Happy marriage? I would say that it was ... successful. After all, I have two sons that I love and five grandchildren that I adore. I was permitted to pursue my career. I was married for thirty years. That is a very successful marriage.”
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“I have never been in love in my life. And that’s what makes me a good actress. When one falls in love, one becomes so absorbed in one’s own emotion, that one can’t view others objectively - which is essential for acting.  Thank God, I was never in love.  Thank God!”
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“I want my independence. So I say to my daddy, ‘Daddy, I would like to be a hausfrau.’ So, he goes to his rowing club and introduces me to several members.  I get handwriting samples from each one, and bring them to an analyst.  The analyst says, ‘You are strong-willed.  With that man’ – your grandfather – ‘you will get what you want.’”  
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“I start out in leading parts on the Viennese stage in Max Reinhardt’s theater, which the other actors still haven’t forgiven me.”
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“I have only slept with one man in my life.  And that’s how it should be.”  
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“Don’t marry because you are in love.  It leads to tremendous disappointment. You see, one has all these idealistic notions about the other person, that they’re so perfect in every way.  Then, one wakes up one day and finds out they have faults like everybody else.  Marry because the man has a similar background, similar values, has a good education, makes a good living.”
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“You have a lot to learn. A lot to learn.”
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“I think I only live this long because I am a slow learner.”
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“Write a part for me.”
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“Hollywood writers - they don’t know what to do with an old woman with an accent.  They think we love to scrub floors and have ten children.”
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“It’s not too late.”
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