Margaret Warrington's Paper Tray


Margaret Warrington/The Shining


Leather-bound office paper tray


Insanity via repetition




Proximity over times

Collected by

Warehouse 13


Film & Theater Wing

Date of Collection

Nov 16, 1991



Very little is documented about the life of Margaret Warrington besides the fact that she was secretary to director Stanley Kubrick as he worked on The Shining. Ever the perfectionist, Kubrick insisted every page in the now iconic "Typewriter Scene", where Shelley Duvall's character finds hundreds of pages filled with the phrase "All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy" be typed out not only in English, but in multiple other languages for translated releases.

This task fell to Warrington, who spent hours upon hours typing out page after page. The exact number has never been revealed, but is suspected to be well over 500. Coincidentally, the scene following, where Jack Nicholson's character threatens Duvall on a stairwell, has the current world record for the most repeated takes of a single scene, totaling 127. The distress shown by Duvall in the final release was very real, as the takes were done consecutively and she was on the brink of madness.


The effects of the paper tray, used to store the countless typewritten sheets on Warrington's desk, only appear after prolonged exposure. Eventually anyone who is exposed will begin to find repetitive activities extremely frustrating, a compounding effect that eventually results in violent outbursts and manic behavior.

The iconic phrase can be found stained into the leather liner, barely visible.


This artifact was collected from the Royal Oak USPS Office in Michigan following the deaths of five employees at the hands of a former coworker.

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