Using the power of the Death Note, Light Yagami becomes Gotham’s God of Death and begins ridding Gotham of its criminals. Only one thing stands between him and a new world with no crime, The Batman.
I used to be in a film club back in college. Our first year we struggled to complete a short film. I must have wrote this script about three to four years ago. The only locations available to film in were the college so I tried to think of a college story that could happen. Out came this script. We didn’t end up shooting this script. I can’t recall what we did instead, but I learned a lot from writing this little script. So I’m posting it.
INT. SMITHSONIAN HALL – DAY
The inside of a standard college educational building. Recently painted white walls, and bland grey tiles. COLLEGE STUDENTS rush out of classrooms.
STEPH LEAF, 18, a brunette girl, walks a bit behind everyone. She stuffs her notebook into her dull purple purse. Suddenly a HAND grabs her arm!
She is whisked away into a dark, isolated corner where the lights are dim.
A HOODED FIGURE spins her around.
The man pulls his hood down REVEALING that he is ERIC DERING, 19, a Yankees fanatic who acts half his age.
Steph covers her mouth and averts her eyes! It’s the worst bed head that’s ever been in this or any universe. His hair stands on its edges, like he’s out of a Japanese anime.
Eric pulls the hood back down and starts banging his head into a nearby wall.
I’m nothing without that hat. Nothing. Nothing. Nothing.
Eric bangs his head into the nearby wall.
Eric slumps to the floor. Steph sits down next to him.
Can’t you get another one?
Yeah right, Steph! Another 1962 Vintage Yankees hat? Like my grandfather just has another one of those lying around, Steph! Oh gosh. What if my grandad finds out? He’ll kick me out of his will or worse, he’ll tell grandma! And she’ll tell Aunt Tes. And she’ll tell Uncle Riley. And then he’ll say “Not now I’m watching the game!” I HAVE TO FIND THAT HAT, STEPH! WHERE IS MY HAT?! OH GOD! WHERE DID I LEAVE IT!
Eric’s freaking out! Steph grabs him!
Chill! Can you do that?! Please. Stay chill and I’ll help you find it!
Eric nods his head. Steph lets go of him. Eric opens his mouth wide. Steph stares him down. Eric shuts his mouth.
When did you notice it was gone?
This morning. I can’t
Okay. Run me through your daily routine.
INT. ERIC’S ROOM – THIS MORNING
We see Eric sleeping in his bed. His room is disturbingly filled with Yankees Memorabilia. His walls are plastered with Yankees posters from the franchise’s history. His sheets are Yankee sheets. His chair has a giant Yankee TEDDY BEAR on it. Eric’s fast asleep under the covers with his butt in the air.
My usual routine for Monday. First I wake up for my morning class. I get up and make my bed first thing. I wan to start my day off good.
An alarm goes off and it scares the bejeesus out of him!
Eric flops out of bed like a fish. He’s only wearing underwear! Derek Jeter’s wide grin smiles from the center of his bum. He panics and runs right into his Yankee Teddy Bear. He holds his back in pain and limps toward the bathroom.
INT. ERIC’S BATHROOM- DAY
Eric’s bathroom is the same as his room, Yankees stuff. There’s even Yankees toothpaste.
Then I like put on deodorant. And then like brush my teeth. And try to catch a quick shower.
Eric stumbles into the room, still holding his back. He gazes into the mirror and tries to fix his horrendous hair. He takes out SPRAY DEODORANT with Alex Rodriguez on the side of it.
It’s empty. He shrugs his shoulders and chucks it behind him. It lands on a large pile of empty canisters.
He grabs his toothbrush. He brushes vigorously, so vigorously that it FLIES out of his hands and straight into the toilet!
Eric glances down into the toilet bowl. It’s filthy. Greenish-brown with a yellow tint.
He PLUNGES his arm into the depths of the toilet, splashing water all over himself.
Can you get to the hat already?
INT. ERIC’S ROOM – LAST MONDAY MORNING
I usually keep it in a special safe place. Nobody would ever think to look.
Eric unzips the back of the teddy bear. He checks to see if anyone’s around then pulls THE HAT of it. The hat is beat up and has several stains of questionable origin on it.
Eric breathes in the scent of the hat. Then places it on his head like a crown. It covers his head completely. He looks like a normal person now. Eric walks out of the room, beaming.
INT. SMITHSONIAN HALL – DAY
So you had the hat when you left your house today?
Yeah! That was the last time I saw it.
What was the first class you took today?
INT. SOCIOLOGY 101 – THIS MORNING
Boring lecture. Eric is in the back. His legs are propped up on his desk with his cap over his face. He’s snoring up a storm. He sporadically scratches his crotch to the disdain of the GIRL sitting next to him.
My socialism class.
No. I took that last semester.
INT. SMITHSONIAN HALL – DAY
Wait! Isn’t that the class with The Chad in it?!
The Chad. Eric you don’t know The Chad? He’s the biggest guy on campus! Really big. Not the good kind of muscly big. Not that I like muscles on guys that much anyway.
Steph extends her arms to show his size. Eric’s lost.
He definitely stole your hat!
INT. SOCIOLOGY 101 – THIS MORNING
THE CHAD, a behemoth of a man, waddles in behind Eric. He belly-laughs to himself then swipes Eric’s hat off his head.
How can you be so sure?
He’s a Red Sox fan, Eric! How could you not know that?
The Chad carefully places a Red Sox Hat on Eric’s head.
INT. HALLWAY- AFTERNOON
A Red Sox fan?! That explains this!
Eric whips out a Red Sox hat out of his backpack.
That son of a gun! I’ll throttle him! I’ll knock his block off!
Eric pops up from the floor with reinvigorated energy with his dukes up.
Do you even know where he lives?
Eric deflates like a popped balloon back to floor.
It’s over. I’ll never get it back.
(rolling her eyes)
He’s a sophomore so he lives in Parker Hall.
Eric springs back up.
To Parker Hall!
Eric kicks open a door in front of him and sprints away!
INT. OUTSIDE THE CHAD’S ROOM- DAY
A yellow door with a Boston Red Sox 2004 World Champions poster is seen. Below the poster is “THE CHAD’S CHAMBER” written in red marker.
Eric zooms down the hallway past the door. Steph walks down the hall and stops at the Chad’s door.
(panting and yelling)
Eric! His room’s down here!
Eric walks back to Steph. He bends over and pants.
Hat. I gotta get it back.
You got that figured out?
Course I do doll.
What did I tell about calling me, doll?
So here’s the plan. I’ll knock on the door. He’s a Red Sox fan. He’ll attack me out of sheer jealousy since his team sucks complete balls! Worse than the Mets! And they really suck! Then I’ll put the boots to him. He’ll beg for mercy. I’ll kick him while he’s down and get the hat back.
Put the boots to him? Have you seen this guy?
The bigger they are, the harder I hit.
Eric rolls up his sleeve and flexes his stringy arms.
Right. Go stand over there. I’ll get your stupid old hat.
Oh. I see where you’re going with this. You’ll lull him into a false sense of security and then I’ll clobber him.
Eric winks at her and then sneaks down the hallway out of sight.
Steph shakes her head and knocks on the door. Tremendous footsteps shake the hall way. The Chad swings his door open. He’s squeezed into a quadruple extra large Red Sox t-shirt. He glowers down at Steph. Inside of his room, in the middle of his desk is ERIC’S HAT.
The Chad’s voice is deep and booming.
Who dares to touch The Chad’s door?!
What business do you have with The Chad, woman?
Are you like serious with this third person talking?
The Chad is eternally serious.
You took my friend’s hat.
The Chad have not a clue what speak of woman.
Steph points at the hat. The Chad tilts his massive body slightly to the left to block the sight of it.
THE CHAD (CONT’D)
That is the Chad’s hat.
You expect me to believe you of all people would own a Yankees hat?
The Chad doesn’t expect you to believe anything. The Chad expects you to get out of the Chad’s face, stop wasting the Chad’s time and skee-daddle!
The Chad slams the door closed.
Right. Okay. I’ll leave.
Steph turns and starts to walk away.
THE CHAD (O.S.)
I’ll go home. Fire up my computer, go online. Maybe hop on twitter! So many people on there these days. Maybe I’ll tweet at the Red Sox. They’ll love to know all about how one of their biggest fans is starting a Yankees hat collection.
The Chad’s door bursts open!
No! Not Twitter! The Chad will become a laughingstock in front of all the Red Sox Nation! Woman have mercy on The Chad!
The Chad grovels at her feet.
Give me the hat.
It’s clobbering time!
Eric runs down the hall, right into a FAKE PLANT! He topples it over and falls flat on his face! The Chad and Steph shake their heads.
Just like a Yankees fan to get riled up over nothing.
The Chad hurls Eric’s hat out of his room.
THE CHAD (CONT’D)
Here! Take it! I don’t want the hat of a team that hasn’t won a championship in years. Haha! Suck it Yankee Doodle!
(picking himself off the floor)
Yeah well, at least I can see my own feet.
Hey! Shut up!
The Chad scurries away and slams the door shut. Steph holds her nose and picks up Eric’s hat. She hands it to him.
Eric grasps it like it is his first born son. He kisses the hat then smells it. Steph nearly vomits.
I missed you.
He places it on his head. The universal order has been restored.
EXT. OUTSIDE PARKER HALL- LATE AFTERNOON
Thanks Steph. I don’t know what I would have done without your help.
Just promise me, you won’t lose it again.
Sure thing doll.
A strong wind whisks the hat right off Eric’s head.
Eric runs after it. Steph rolls her eyes and heads off in the opposite direction
FADE TO BLACK.
In his book The Anatomy of Story, John Truby talks about the path to becoming a master storyteller. His first step is about developing the premise of your story. Truby states that nine of ten writers fail at this stage. I’d like to not be a part of those nine so I’m going to try out this exercise he suggests to do.
“Write down your wish list, a list of everything you would like to see up on the screen, in a book, or at the theater.” I’ll just do five. Otherwise this blog entry would go on and on and on.
An animated movie that removes the stigma from animation in the West
Animation can go to so many places that life action can’t. If you look at an animation like Miyazaki’s Spirited Away or Looney Tunes, these are worlds that wouldn’t work with live action at all or not nearly as well. Animation can exaggerate the rules of real life and get away with it. It’s another art form.
However it is limited because of the stigma that it appeals to children or can only be used for comedy. Pixar films are the closest to meeting this desire. but they are still seen as children’s films. I would love to see an animated movie that is not a comedy nor a family film. It’s possible that I haven’t looked hard enough and this movie does exist. If not, I would love to see this on the big screen.
A pedophile protagonist
This is a weird one but ever since I watched Hard Candy, a film with pedophile protagonist who is tortured and humilated, I’ve been wanting to see that sort of protagonist taken a different way. Can you get the audience to get behind a pedophile? They have to be the hardest people to have empathy for. You would have to be a great writer to make the audience feel sorry for a pedophile. It’s also very taboo in nearly every culture. It seems like an impossible task. I’d like to see this done in a book, or in a movie theater.
Decay/Evolution of Superhero’s morals
Batman doesn’t kill. Spider-man doesn’t. What would it take to push these guys over the edge? I know there have been plenty of Batman stories about this sort of thing, but I don’t think he ever actually snaps (Killing Joke is ambiguous). Whenever a hero finds themselves in a situation that would require them compromise their morals to solve their problem, they always find another way out. I’d like to read a story where they have no choice but to kill someone and they have to deal with it. Whenever someone asks, “Why doesn’t Batman just kill the Joker?”, a person always brings up the slippery slope argument that Batman will then start killing all his villains. I’d like to see a story about this slippery slope.
The thing that really prompted this was the end of Avatar: The Last Airbender. Aang spends the episode contemplating killing the Fire Lord. He is opposed to it because of his morals, but he has to do it to bring balance back to the world. Then he finds a lion turtle that gives him the special power to not have to deal with that dilemma.
Mike Haggar as a protagonist
Mike Haggar is a former professional wrestler who becomes the mayor of his city. He then decides to beat up crime with his own fists. His fighting style is over the top. I’d love to watch a show about him just breaking people.
The Other Side of the Prophecy
Countless stories have been told involving prophecies and chosen ones. It sure would suck to be on the other side of a prophecy. Imagine being a ruthless tyrant and you find out that some 14 year old kid is going to kill you. Or what if you weren’t a ruthless tyrant and you found that out? What if you’re just a regular king who’s good at his job and don’t deserve one of these things? What would you do? Try to kill the kid? Find another way? Can you talk your way out of a prophecy? That would be a fun story to read. Or better yet write.