lucy & desi: a home movie


Lucy and Desi: A Home Movie (1993), Lucie Arnaz’s Emmy winning documentary about her parents, featuring personal home movies. This video is enlisted so you’ll need this link to view. I personally believe this is the most informative piece, movie or book, put out about them and their marriage. Enjoy! 


Happy 76th Wedding Anniversary, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz // November 30, 1940

Lucy and Desi spoke once more in the final days before his death on December 2, 1986. As Lucie remembers, “I got on the phone with my mother and said, ‘He’s barely speaking. He didn’t eat any of the dinner we fixed. He hasn’t eaten in three days. I don’t even know if he’ll understand what you’re saying, but I’ll put the phone up to his ear.’ She said, ‘Oh, okay.’ She was always trying to be so brave. You could hear her voice cracking. I put the phone up to Dad’s ear in the bed. And he gave me a look that said, ‘Who is it?’ And I said, ‘It’s the redhead.’ He just listened, and I heard what she said. She just said the same thing over and and over again. It was muffled, but you could clearly make out it was the same thing over and over again.

“It was, ‘I love you. I love you. Desi, I love you.’ You could even hear the intonations of the voice change, how she meant each one, the interpretations. And I just sat there, trying not to show him I was listening, because I had to hold the phone. I couldn’t get out of the room. He couldn’t hold the phone. And he said, ‘I love you, too, honey.’ Really, my mother was the last person he talked to, because he died about forty-eight hours later.”

“Until I went back into my little diary,” concludes Lucie, “I never put it together that the date this happened was November 30 - the same date as their wedding anniversary.”


Happy 76th Wedding Anniversary, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz // November 30, 1940

“He would sit with me and cry. He would actually cry sometimes, talking about how much he loved her, and how terrible it was that they were divorced. And he loved her to his dying day.” -Marcella Rabwin

“I think of her everyday - even her voice echoes in my conscience. You can’t just erase your soulmate away.” -Desi Arnaz

“She visited him in Del Mar a week before he died. By this time his ailments included emphysema and the colostomy he’d had for a couple of years. Desi was out of it, disoriented. When it came time for Lucy to leave, Desi said, ‘Where are you going?’ ‘I’m going home,’ Lucy responded. ‘You are home,’ Desi said. So, Lucy stayed a while longer.” -William Asher

“At the end, we drove down to Del Mar, where she went to see Desi a few days before he died. She was very, very shook-up. She left that place and broke down and said, ‘That was the one love…’” -Lillian Briggs Winograd

[Quoting Lucy’s second husband, Gary Morton, following Lucy’s death] “I guess she’s happy now, she’s with Desi.” -Paula Stewart


I want to marry you and I want to marry you tomorrow. I don’t want to just live together. I want to marry you and I want to have some children with you and I want to have a home. I’m not like the image you have of me. Now, do you want to marry me or not?

Of course I want to marry you, you idiot!

-Desi Arnaz’s proposal to Lucille Ball. They eloped the next day: November 30, 1940


Rest in Peace Desiderio Alberto Arnaz y de Acha III // March 2, 1917 - December 2, 1986

It’s so hard to believe that he is gone. I’m the only one left now. I remember the very last time I spoke with him. It was November 30, our anniversary, and he was in Del Mar with Lucie. He was very weak. Lucie held the phone up to his ear, and we said “I love you” over and over again to each other.

On December 2, 1986 I was in the car coming home from taping an episode of Password when I heard Desi died. I could not stop crying. I felt lost, and like my own life had come to some kind of end. Lucie arranged the funeral and Danny Thomas gave the eulogy. It was funny and touching, but so very hard for me to sit through.

With Desi’s passing I had lost my youth, my greatest success, and the only man I ever wanted to be the father of my children. Besides DeDe, Fred and Cleo, he was the one person who had been in my life the longest, and made the greatest impact. I didn’t want to even consider what my life would have been without him.

-Lucille Ball

REMINDER: Too Many Girls will be on TCM (Turner Classic Movie) on April 12th at 10:30 AM!! It’s the very first movie that they both starred together before The Long Long Trailer (1953) and Forever Darling (1956) also the tv series I Love Lucy (1951-1956) and The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour (1957-1960). Not only that, during the process of filming of this movie, Lucy and Desi both fell in love and starting dating - just six months later, they got married and had 20 years of marriage. Fate would have it, they both would own the RKO Studios where they first met on this movie and renamed it as “Desilu Studios” where they filmed and produced the most iconic television series of our lifetime; I Love Lucy, The Untouchables, The Andy Griffith Show, Star Trek, Mission Impossible, and etc.


Desi recalling his second glance at Lucy during the rehearsals for the film Too Many Girls (His first glance at Lucy was when she was wearing a gold dress, her hair messy with a black eye with a band-aid above on her eyebrow due to a fight scene with Maureen O’ Hara in Dance, Girl, Dance. He didn’t like how she looked, until much later on in the afternoon where he saw her coming into the room after she had changed into a casual outfit and he hardly recognized her.)


June 19, 1949, Our Lady of the Valley Church: We had been married for nine years but when I saw her coming down the aisle with her bouquet and wedding dress and hat, I got as much of a thrill as the first time, perhaps even more. The church and all made it seem so much more real. Lucy looked lovely, with those big blue eyes looking straight at me.

-Desi Arnaz (A Book)


“I loved her very much and in my own and perhaps peculiar way, I will always love her.”