A Richer Dust
A Richer Dust is a short story by Noel Coward, adapted into a one-act play.
In 1940 Los Angeles, movie star couple Morgan and Lenore live in alcohol- and sun-soaked luxury. But Morgan’s sailor-brother Sid is on leave and pays the couple a surprise visit.
Fighting for Britain in the war, Sid unwittingly brings with him all the stories about Morgan’s ignoble origins, for Morgan Kent is really Leslie Booker from Southsea. Lenore revels in the ammunition this gives her against her husband.
Morgan’s always been aware that he’s lucky whereas Sid is actually good, and when a gossip columnist traps Sid into dishing the dirt, Morgan’s career, along with his piece of mind, is under attack.
Away from gilded, make-believe Hollywood, Sid boldly continues to protect democracy and save the Empire, while Morgan is makes movies about it. His feeling of inadequacy is so great, he becomes ill. His publicist works overtime to salvage the situation and make the best of his star’s declining fortunes.
While Lenore sues for divorce, a final family reunion back in Southsea rams home the difference between the two men, and provokes the final humiliation for Morgan.