Vertigo Characters

Vertigo Character List

John "Scottie" Ferguson

Scottie has retired from the San Francisco PD because of an extreme fear of heights leading not only to vertigo but the death of a fellow cop. Turns out that vertigo is the least of Scottie’s problems: he’s also got a truly serious case of obsessive compulsive disorder that commingles with a distinctly unhealthy sexual predation focused on a single woman. You might call Scottie a vertiginous, acrophobic stalker…except that he's the hero of the movie!

Gavin Elster

Scottie knew Elster in college, and he calls upon his old chum for what is essentially private detective work. Elster wants Scottie to put his detective skills to work on a rather odd task: following his beautiful wife Madeleine who seems to be, well, possessed by the spirit of a long dead woman named Carlotta.


Midge is a fashion designer artist who was once engaged to Scottie. They are now just friends, although it is quite evident that Midge would not mind things getting back to where they were. She grounds Scottie and is very concerned that one more tragic occurrence may make him go completely off-kilter.

Madeleine Elster

Madeleine is Gavin’s wife, and harbors an obsession about the long-dead Carlotta. She is definitely acting strange, but she’s also extremely beautiful and alluring and it doesn’t take long for Scottie to become as obsessed with Madeleine as Madeleine is with the suicidal Carlotta. Things reach a boiling point on the bell tower at a Spanish mission when Madeleine’s possession by Carlotta leads to a death wish which Scottie cannot stop due to his fear of heights.

Judy Barton

After Madeleine’s death by falling from the bell tower is ruled a suicide, Scottie has a mental breakdown from grief and is nearly catatonic from guilt. Following his recovery and entry back into society, he spots a young brunette woman who bears an eerie resemblance to the blonde Madeleine. They develop a relationship that soon turns quite dark when Scottie goes to extreme lengths to intensify and heighten Judy’s resemblance to the dead Madeleine. Things get even darker when the makeover seems to suggest that Judy is no mere lookalike.

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