Sunset Boulevard is chock full of memorable moments. But one moment that has always stood out to me isn’t one of the obvious ones. As Norma Desmond is making her infamous trip down the stairs, there is a brief shot of Hedda Hopper watching with a look of absolute pity. I’m obsessed with that little shot. It’s always made me wonder if there possibly could have been some kind of back story between Norma and Hedda. As a gossip columnist, Hedda was known for being pretty ruthless. Her column earned her a swift kick in the rear from Spencer Tracy and Joan Fontaine once sent her a skunk as a Valentine’s Day gift. So such a pitiful reaction from Hedda seems a little unusual unless there was some kind of history there. Before becoming a gossip columnist, Hedda was an actress and worked during the time that Norma would have been at the height of her career. Perhaps they could have been in some movies together or had been friends during that time. Or maybe she just thought that Norma Desmond’s story was too tragic to revel in the way everybody else was. Either way, I’ve gotta hand it to Hedda for making the most out of her cameo appearance.