Dixon was featured prominently in the teaser trailer ("I'm Dixon") & this subplot was included in the preview screening done in Australia in late August 1999 & Fall 1999 in New York (critics screenings).
Here are some of PTA's comments on why it was cut out: "there was more of that, and I took it out, but here's the thing. I stand by the fact that it does function really well the way it is now. It is the most truncated and elliptical bit of the movie, but I thank God that there is something truncated and elliptical in the movie, which does pretty much hit its points. The movie needs something that has mystery, and this one is sort of a representation of spending a couple of days in the Valley: that's how much color would come into your life." Courtesy of Nitrate Online - Cynthia Fuchs - 1/7/00
"Yeah, the worm stuff. There’s sort of, a little bit more of a follow through on the mystery character, who’s in it now. It’s better to remain sort of a mystery character. The brown jacket and the little kid (Dixon). And that stuff is sort of better served as something to truly think about as opposed to something to answer and in an effort to make it more mysterious and make it shorter…I just took it out." © 2000 cigarettes & coffee - Greg Mariotti - 12/11/99
Here's the complete script excerpt. As you know, Magnolia is constantly switching back & forth between the various plots & characters. To make things easier, I've combined all the various segments below (with a quick description of where they fit in the movie).
(After Kurring loses gun, during Partridge's monologue)
INT. HOLDING ROOM - THAT MOMENT
CAMERA pushes in on Marcie. She's crying and looking down. She lifts her head, speaks to an UNSEEN OFFICER nearby, guarding her cell;
MARCIE I wanna confess what I've done.
(Frank meets Phil right before his "reunion" with Earl)
INT. LAMPLIGHTER - THAT MOMENT
CAMERA with Stanley, sitting alone in a booth with a Coke and a cookie. He's reading a book. BEAT, HOLD, THEN:
CAMERA pans/dollies away and booms up -- moving across the restaurant -- across the way, sitting in a booth by the opposite window, out of view from Stanley;
Dixon, the little kid from earlier, sitting in a booth with a young black male, WORM (20s) This is clearly the back figure we've been seeing glimpses of --
ANGLE, AT THE BOOTH.
Dixon eats same pudding. Worm mumbles to him, various jabs. "...sit up straight..." "...world is hard..." "..little brat..."
HOLD. Worm glances across the coffee shop -- he sees Stanley.
Worm HOLDS his look, thinks a moment. He looks up at the WOMAN behind the counter...she's doing a crossword puzzle.
Worm looks back to Dixon, subtle mumbles and gestures and few moments later, Dixon stands from the booth and exits the coffee shop.
HOLD w/WORM. He sticks a finger down his throat, makes himself well with tears. He stands up OUT OF FRAME.
ANGLE, COUNTER NEAR STANLEY. Worm sits into FRAME, near to Stanley. Stanley glances up, they make a quick moment of eye contact, then look away. BEAT. HOLD.
EXT. PARKING LOT/BEHIND LAMPLIGHTER - MOMENTS LATER
CAMERA follows Dixon as he walks towards an old beat up PARKED CAR. He stops, hesitates, looks across the way -- LINDA'S MERCEDES is parked.
He hesitates a moment, looks left and right and all around and then he starts to walk over to the car...
AT LINDA'S CAR. Dixon sees that she's passed out, knocks on the window...
DIXON Lady...hey Lady...Lady....you ok? you alive...huh...hey?
He looks around again, then gets in the passenger's side of the car, shakes her same more.
DIXON Lady. Lady. Hey wake up. Lady?
Dixon reaches down and takes her PURSE, takes the MONEY out of the WALLET and then reaches for her CEL PHONE and dials 911.
DIXON Hello? Hello? I have an emergency situation -- this lady -- this lady seems like she's dead -- hello? She's in the parking lot -- (etc. gives information regarding location. etc.)
Then he gets out, walks back across parking lot...and into the concealed parked car he came from –
(Jimmy confesses to Rose)
INT. LAMPLIGHTER - THAT MOMENT
Through the window, the AMBULANCE passes in the b.g., heading nearby...and OC we hear the siren throughout scene;
Stanley looks up at Worm, who's crying harder now, they make another moment of eye contact. BEAT, THEN:
STANLEY It's ok.
STANLEY Are you alright?
Worm looks up.
(Frank with Earl on his deathbed)
INT. LAMPLIGHTER - THAT MOMENT
Worm is in tears, talking to Stanley. SLOW ZOOM IN.
WORM ....you have it...easy....you know? You have a father who loves you, huh?
WORM You know what it's like to come home scared, scared that maybe if you don't have the money you're supposed to go out each day and get that you're gonna get beaten....by a belt...he hits me with a belt, Stanley....
I'm supposed to sell those candy bars, and if I don't, I come home without the money....
STANLEY ....Why does he do it...?
WORM Cause he hates me....he hates me so much.
STANLEY It's not right.
WORM I hate it.
CU - Worm. He hesitates...looks at Stanley and says:
WORM I'm sorry to put all this on you, Stanley --
STANLEY I have money.
STANLEY I have money to give you.
WORM No. No. I have to do this on my own.
STANLEY I can take you to get money. I don't need it...I don't need it -- listen to me: I can let you have money so your father won't hit you ever again -- you'll have the money because I don't need it.
CAMERA pushes in a little on Worm, he looks up. 30fps.
WORM Where do you have it?
CAMERA holds 2-shot, looking out the window onto the street. We PUSH PAST THEM AND THROUGH THE WINDOW, picking up with a YELLOW CAB as it drives by, PAN with it....
(The rain of frogs has begun.)
INT. LAMPLIGHTER - THAT MOMENT
Stanley and Worm. CAMERA holds as all around...through the glass windows...it RAINS FROGS....smashing to the ground.....hitting a couple odd parked cars...they sit, watching, stunned...in a sort of daze. Stanley seems almost happy. Worm shocked, scarred;
WORM What is that?
STANLEY It's frogs. It's raining frogs.
WORM ...fuck you mean, it's raining frogs?
STANLEY It's raining frogs from the sky.
WORM ....what the fuck, what the fuck....
STANLEY This happens....this is something that happens.
WORM What the fuck is goin' on, WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON?
CU - STANLEY. HOLD ON HIS FACE extremely tight.
In the reflection of his eye, we see the Frogs falling.... past the neon sign that reads "Fresh Coffee."
ANGLE, DIXON. He comes running into the Lamplighter and over to Worm and Stanley....he's scarred shitless and frantic --
DIXON DADDY! DAD! DAD WHAT THE HELL IS GOIN' ON?
WORM Stay quiet...stay quiet, son --
DIXON LET'S GO, LET'S GO, LET'S GET HIS MONEY AND GO -- DID YOU GET HIS MONEY? DID YOU GET IT? DID YOU GET HIS MONEY, DAD?
WORM No, Son...be quiet...be quiet now...
DIXON C'mon, Dad. We gotta just GET HIS MONEY AND GO, LET'S GO. Let's get the money --
WORM We're not gonna do that now. We're not gonna do that now and that's over.
DIXON BULLSHIT. BULLSHIT, DAD WE NEED TO GET HIS MONEY AND GO.
Dixon takes out a large POLICE ISSUED REVOLVER, AIMS at STANLEY'S FACE.
DIXON GIVE US YOUR MONEY MAN.
WORM Son, don't --
DIXON BULLSHIT, BULLSHIT DAD WE GOTTA GET HIS MONEY --
WORM -- no.
DIXON (to Stanley) GIVE US YOUR MONEY.
WORM Put the gun down, please, boy.
DIXON GIVE US YOUR MONEY, KID.
WORM Son, please, now....
DIXON DAD --
WORM Please, boy, put it down and it's ok.
Dixon starts to get nervous and well with tears...he shakes a little....
WORM It's ok --
DIXON We gotta get his money so we can get outta here -- we gotta --
WORM That idea is over now. We're not gonna do that now.
Dixon starts crying and shaking and backing away --
DIXON DADDY, FUCK, DADDY, DON'T GET MAD AT ME. DON'T GET MAD AT ME -- (to Stanley) JUST GIMME YOUR MONEY.
WORM I'm not mad, son, I will not be mad at you and it's ok and please put it down and I won't be mad and I won't --
Dixon starts to lower the gun a bit, crying and shaking....He lowers the gun and hands it over to his Father....Dixon is sort of flinching....the possibility that his Father may strike him...
...Stanley is frozen...Dixon is hyperventilating....
DIXON I - just - thought - that - I - didn't want - I - didn't - I - didn't -
WORM It's ok, boy.
HOLD. Que. "Bein Green," by Kermit the Frog/Aimee
EXT. LAMPLIGHTER/VENTURA BLVD. - THAT MOMENT
CAMERA holds a wide angle on the Lamplighter Coffee Shop. Frogs falling from sky onto and around the streets....
EXT. THE SKY - THAT MOMENT
CAMERA up with the Falling Frogs....CAMERA is moving down with them... it becomes almost musical....like Busby-Berkely-style choreography of Frogs That Fall In The Sky...
MUSIC/KERMIT THE FROG "It's not that easy bein' green... Having to spend each day the color of the leaves..."
EXT. EMPTY PARKING LOT AREA - DAWN
CU - Dixon as he gets into the old beat up car with Worm. Their call pulls away and drives off. Dixon looks at Linda's Mercedes which is still parked way across the lot -- they exit FRAME.
EXT. MAGNOLIA - DAWN
Worm's car drives down the street. LONG LENS. ANGLE, at the car, Dixon leans up and out the window a bit....he's got the gun wrapped in newspaper, taking the fingerprints from the gun....he throws the POLICE ISSUED WEAPON from the speeding car...
INT. LAMPLIGHTER - DAWN
Stanley sits in the back of a squad car....an OFFICER watching him...probably supposed to be comforting him, but instead drinking coffee, chatting with other OFFICERS questioning the coffee shop employees --
(Right after Earl's body is taken away)
INT. POLICE STATION - MARCIE
Marcie looking down at the table in front of her, tape recorder and microphone in front of her, (and all that goes along w/full confession/etc.)
MARCIE I killed him. I killed my husband. He hit my son and he hit my grandson and I hit him. I hit him with the ashtray and he was knocked out and I killed him, I strangled him. I strangled my husband to protect my boys. I protected my boys.