Friday, August 19, 2011

What? It could work!

Okay, here's the pitch: Think... reworking "The Dead Zone":

Josh Brolin plays The Presidential Candidate and Daniel Radcliffe plays the troubled amnesiac who's come out an eleven year coma to find he has magic powers and becomes obsessed with heading off a future Armageddon.

SNAP FROM BLACK: It's eleven years ago. Open on a car speeding along rain swamped rural highway, after dark. It's a harrowing ride. Way too fast for conditions  CUT TO: interior of the car showing a young boy, about ten years old, lying unconscious in the back seat with his head being cradled in the lap of an unidentified woman; presumed to be his mother. There is a deep gash in the boy's forehead. CUT TO: her perspective past the back of the driver's head out the windshield showing headlights reflecting off sheets of rain and glimpses of rapidly passing foliage at the side of the road, but little else. Are those the oncoming lights of a truck too close to avoid?  CUT TO: Extreme closeup of the terror in the drivers eyes.

There is a scream. Then silence. Then BLACK

FADE FROM BLACK: A closeup of the sleeping boy's face slowly morphs showing the passage of years.
During the change, we hear snippets of conversation as though coming in and out of a sonic cloud: " sad it is that his parents died in the crash..." "...a miracle the boy lived..." "...the fact he was already unconscious when the accident happened probably saved his life...." old man's voice accepting responsibility of the boy's care... ...the same elderly voice singing Happy Birthday... " ...why won't he wake up?..." "...we can't find anything wrong..." "'s all up to him now..." " ...sounds of a TV progressing through a decade of news and events... ... etc.

Then silence.  Then WHITE

FADE FROM WHITE: View from an upstairs window out to a shady well manicured residential back yard. It's a beautiful late summer's day. Pulling back reveals an adult version of the sleeping boy: Jimmy Smith (Daniel Radcliffe). Long steady-cam panning shot takes in the surroundings: A typical farmhouse interior shows pictures hung on the wall showing his life as a boy with his parents. In some of the pictures we can see an older bearded man with his arm around Jimmy's mother. There's a well broken in easy chair beside his bed with a pile of books next to it. The topmost one: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows has a bookmark not quite half way through it. We hear the television in another room and The Candidate (Josh Brolin) is making a speech at a large rally. Through the sonic cloud we can hear the crowd roar its approval on almost each line he utters. He is a phenomenon. As this happens the tracking shot has now found Jimmy's face again and begins a slow zoom in towards it.

CUT TO TV: SLOW ZOOM to  The Candidate saying:
"My friends, I have been watching and I have been praying for God to tell me what to do about the threat we are facing as a Nation when it comes to how our OWN GOVERNMENT has begun to take over our lives. And do you know what he said?"
The crowd shouts "YES!" in unison.
"He said, 'Man'," the crowd cheers, "He said 'Man, you gotta take this one on yourself.'"
The crowd shouts "YES!"
"He said, 'You gotta take this one on yourself because there just in't gonna be anyone gonna do it for you.'"
Scattered "That's right's" and "Amens" can be heard from the crowd.
"He said, 'Rick,'"
The crowd shouts "YES!"
"You gotta run for President of the United States and you gotta WIN! Because I'm FED UP!"
The crowd shouts "FED UP!"  "He said 'I'm FED UP with this government, and you gotta do something about it!'"
We are now zoomed in on  The Candidate 's eyes showing the naked ambition in them. As the crowd goes wild...

CUT TO CLOSE UP: Jimmy Smith,
the sonic "clouds" part and the sound becomes crystal clear. Jimmy's eyes snap open. He is awake.


....WHAT? It could work!....

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