After Annie has been fired from her internship at Abbott Playhouse, she is looking for a new job. An ad for a personal assistant in Hollywood Hills catches Annie's attention. Marla is introduced as Annie shows up at her house for a job interview. Marla is first cold and distant. She is living alone in a complete mess of a house. She tells Annie that she needs someone to sort out her things and clean up the mess. After asking Annie a couple of short and straight-to-the-point questions, she hires her. Annie is quite surprised of how easy it was. Marla says that there's something she likes about her and she also admits that no one else applied for the job. She then offers a thousand dollars a week for it, which makes the decision quite easy for Annie.
While talking on the phone with Liam, Annie knocks over a trinket, which breaks. After hanging up, she looks for a broom and discovers that Marla was a famous celebrity. She finds a Hollywood start, a magazine with Marla on the cover and a picture with Peter Fonda. Marla catches Annie looking through her stuff. Annie is happy about this discovery, but Marla simply says that she used to be famous. She doesn't seem happy to be reminded of the good old days. Annie manages to reach out to Marla by bringing up her dreams of becoming an actress. Marla is quite nice about it and she seems to enjoy discussing with Annie. Later Marla brings Annie to Musso & Frank, the restaurant where she used to party and enjoy a good night out. While there are talking, Annie receives a call from her mom, and says she'll ignore it and call her back later. Marla tells her never to ignore one's mother. After her call, Annie comes back to sit with Marla who looks quite dismayed. Marla is suddenly rude and doesn't seem to recognize Annie. When her mind slowly comes around, she looks all upset and vulnerable. Then, she sips her drink and starts pick up their conversation like nothing happened.
On another day, while cleaning Marla's desk, Annie find pamphlets and articles about assisted suicide. Annie decides to confront her about it. Marla gets angry at Annie and threatens to fire her. But Annie is very insistant and asks Marla to talk to her. Then Marla reveals that she has Alzheimer's disease. Annie is very sympathetic and Marla tries to reassure her by telling her that she is 'investigating' her options of dying while she is still herself.
Reading through various events invitations with Marla, Annie convinces her to attend at least one. Marla randomly picks one, which is a screening of one of Marla's old films. She does not want to go as she doesn't like watching herself in a movie, but Annie makes her go telling her that she promised she'd go to one event.
One the way to the screening, Marla and Annie ride a limousine joined by Liam, Naomi, Ivy and Raj. The situation seems quite awkward. Liam tries to make conversation with Marla, but she does not seem interested nor excited about any of it. She is not expecting a lot of people to show up. Though when they arrived, a big crown is waiting and Marla is warmly greeted. She is stunned at how many people showed up and at how excited they are to see her.
During the film, it seems like everyone is having a good time. Marla is enjoying the movie and remembers her lines. The screening is a success and Marla gets a standing ovation at the end. She gives Annie a nice hug.
At the after party, Marla breaks apart from the crowd and Annie comes to join her. Marla thanks any for this 'fabulous' night. She then give Annie her beautiful necklace and Annie modestly accepts it.
The next morning, Annie enters Marla's house with the newspaper talking about last night's event. Annie is very excited to show Marla. It looks like Marla is not in her house, but then, Annie finds a letter addressed to her. After reading that last night was a 'marvelous sendoff', Annie runs into the bedroom. The curtains are closed and it is strongly implied that Marla has gone through with a dignified death, which leaves Annie in tears.
Then, at Marla's funeral, Annie briefly meets Brooke Templeton, Marla's daughter.
- Marla was once nominated for an Academy Award.
- Her date for the event was Warren Beatty.
- She had been fighting Alzheimer for about five years prior to her death.
- Until her funeral, it was unknown if Marla had any living relatives.