Scarlett Ghosts

by

10/28/2011

Neighborhood: Clinton

Scarlett Ghosts
Photo by John Quilty

In a small basement theatre on West 50th Street and 8th Avenue I once photographed Scarlett Johansson accepting the Theatre World Award for her performance in “A View From The Bridge.” When she got to the part in her acceptance speech where she thanked Arthur Miller, the shutter speed on my new Nikon mysteriously slowed and I was unable to snap a close-up.

When I left the theatre I crossed the street and stood in front of a white apartment complex that had once been the hospital where Rudolph Valentino died and Marilyn Monroe was hospitalized while studying at the Actors’ Studio.

When I looked at my LCD screen to review the photos, Scarlett looked like Marilyn in all of her slow shutter-speed close-ups. A young girl, no more than 10 years of age was leaving the apartment complex, and  she asked me what I was photographing.

“Ghosts,” I answered.

“Well, ” she replied. “There’s a lot of them around here!”

John Quilty is a writer who lives in New York City.

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