Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Timmons Chronicles: Pilot - Act III

This is act III of the pilot script for The Timmons Chronicles. Any comments are welcome. If you have read the Theater Boy book, you might want to know that everything in the first 4 acts takes place before the scenes in Theater Boy, except parts of Act IV, which take place in the future.

Act III
INT. YOUNG BOBBY’S ROOM - DAY
Five months have passed, June 1972. Young Bobby’s room is filled with small robots. Some more sophisticated than others. Some are wind-up, some are radio-controlled. The most sophisticated work off voice-command. Young Bobby tinkers with one of them at his desk/workbench. He puts the finishing touches on it and sets it on the desk. Its eyes light up and its head turns toward Young Bobby.
YOUNG BOBBY
Take two steps forward, my mechanical friend.
The robot takes 3 steps forward.
YOUNG BOBBY
(cont) Hey, I taught you how to count better than that!
ROBOT
Sorry, master.
It takes two steps forward.
YOUNG BOBBY
That’s better.
Young Bobby’s door is open a crack and Lorie’s eyes peer through.
INT. HALLWAY - DAY
Lorie steps away from Young Bobby’s door.
LORIE
Do you really think he’s ready for this?
OLD MAN
(V.O.) Intellectually? He’s a college student.
LORIE
But physically, mentally, he’s still just six.
OLD MAN
(V.O.) It will give him time to get accustomed to the power. Besides, the arrangements have already been made. She’s on her way.
INT. YOUNG BOBBY’S ROOM - DAY
It’s later in the day. Young Bobby is playing chess with one of his robots. He moves the queen.
YOUNG BOBBY
Queen to E6, check.
The robot picks up a pawn and moves it.
ROBOT
Pawn to C6.
YOUNG BOBBY
You can’t do that. You’re still in check.
ROBOT
It was a valid move for the pawn.
YOUNG BOBBY
(sighs) That’s true, but part of the game is defending your King. Your King is in check, which means you have to do something to block it.
ROBOT
(Looks over the board) Chess is a hard game. How about checkers?
Young Bobby rolls his eyes. There is a knock on his door and Lorie opens it.
LORIE
Bobby, there’s someone we’d like you to meet.
A girl, YOUNG SASHA O’BRIEN, comes up behind her. She’s 7, black hair and eyes, with a pale complexion. Young Bobby stands.
LORIE
This is Sasha O’Brien.
Young Bobby looks her over, glances at his robots.
YOUNG BOBBY
Well just don’t stand there, bow to the lady!
About half of his robots turn and bow to Young Sasha. She giggles.
LORIE
I’m going to get Sasha settled. Why don’t you go take a bath and get ready for dinner?
Young Bobby rolls his eyes and heads for the bathroom.
INT. SECRET ROOM - DAY.
Lorie escorts Young Sasha into the same room where Young Bobby was for his birthday. It is dark. The old man appears from the shadows and the lights come on in the room.
LORIE
Have a seat, Sasha.
Young Sasha hesitates, then sits in the chair at the center of the room. The old man approaches her.
OLD MAN
Do you know me?
YOUNG SASHA
(Looks at him, shakes her head) No, should I?
Her accent has a New Jersey tang to it.
OLD MAN
(Shakes his head) I knew your parents before you were born. (Speaks a sentence in Russian, translates to ‘Can you understand me?’
YOUNG SASHA
What was that?
OLD MAN
Russian. Did it ring a bell?
YOUNG SASHA
(Shakes head) I only speak English.
OLD MAN
Fair enough. Start the procedure.
The ceiling opens and a helmet comes down. Young Sasha’s arms and legs are clamped down.
YOUNG SASHA
(Fearfully) What’s going on?
OLD MAN
Something to bring back old memories.
Sasha screams in pain as the helmet begins to glow. The process takes a minute, then stops. The helmet is lifted off her head. Young Sasha’s eyes glaze over a moment, then come back to life slowly. The clamps are removed from her arms and legs.
OLD MAN
What is your name?
Young Sasha shakes her head slightly. Her accent changes to Russian.
YOUNG SASHA
But Babushka, you know me. I’m your Sasha!
OLD MAN
(Speaking in Russian) Do you remember how to open minds?
YOUNG SASHA
(Speaking in Russian) Of course, one does not forget one’s gift.
She looks around herself.
YOUNG SASHA
But what is this? My skin is so young? (gasps) It worked? I am young again?
OLD MAN
(Nods) Your body is 7 years old.
YOUNG SASHA
But you are so old, darling. Why did you not make yourself young?
OLD MAN
(Smiles) I did. And he’s waiting to meet you for dinner.
He spreads his hands out.
OLD MAN
(cont) This body is just for show.
He vanishes. She gasps.
OLD MAN
(V.O.) Now I need you to open his mind as you did mine.
Lorie comes out of the shadows and offers her hand. Young Sasha takes it, gets up and they exit the room.
INT. DINING ROOM - DAY
Young Bobby sits at the table, playing with a robot. Lorie escorts Young Sasha in, whispers in her ear and leaves. Young Sasha sits next to Young Bobby. A moment later Brad comes in with dinner.
BRAD
Here you go. You kids eat alone. Us grownups will eat later.
Young Sasha stares at Young Bobby while he plays. He looks up and notices her staring.
YOUNG BOBBY
What? Did I forget to wash behind my ears?
YOUNG SASHA
(Shakes head, Russian accent) No, Babushka.
Young Bobby looks at her from the corners of his eyes.
YOUNG BOBBY
Huh? What’s with the accent?
YOUNG SASHA
(Catches herself, Jersey accent) Oh nothing. I learned I had Russian heritage and I’m trying something new.
YOUNG BOBBY
That’s better. I hope you like meatloaf.
YOUNG SASHA
I prefer a good stroganoff.
YOUNG BOBBY
Do that again, switching from American to Russian accents. That’s weird.
YOUNG SASHA
Haven’t you learned how to speak Russian?
YOUNG BOBBY
(Shakes head) Just a few words. We’re going to France in a week and I’ve been learning French, but not much Russian.
YOUNG SASHA
(Nods) You will learn.
YOUNG BOBBY
(Rolls eyes) Great.
INT. YOUNG BOBBY’S ROOM - NIGHT
Dinner is over and Young Bobby takes Young Sasha to his room to see the robots. Young Sasha sits on Young Bobby’s bed.
YOUNG SASHA
Come sit with me.
Young Bobby reluctantly sits next to her. Young Sasha looks him over.
YOUNG SASHA
(Cont.) They really haven’t told you anything?
YOUNG BOBBY
About what?
YOUNG SASHA
About me, about Russia, about your history?
YOUNG BOBBY
I don’t understand.
Young Sasha stands, grabs Young Bobby by the face and looks into his eyes.
YOUNG SASHA
Look at me.
Young Bobby struggles for a moment, but cannot move.
YOUNG SASHA
Don’t fight it. This is bigger than you know. Relax. Just look into my eyes and think nothing more.
Young Bobby’s eyes glaze over.
INT. WHITE ROOM - NIGHT
The room is completely white. No walls or edges can be seen. Young Bobby stands by himself, dressed completely in white. He shakes his head.
YOUNG BOBBY
Hello?
His voice echos. Young Sasha suddenly appears, also dressed in white.
YOUNG SASHA
Oh, it worked! Just like last time!
YOUNG BOBBY
I’m confused.
YOUNG SASHA
(Russian accent) Oh but of course you are Babushka. Let me explain. We’re in a kind of mind limbo. Our minds are joined together and it manifests itself like this. Like a blank piece of paper, waiting for writing or painting. Oh there’s just no end to what we cn do here!
OLD MAN
(V.O.) Get on with it!
YOUNG SASHA
(Looks up) Oh you were always so impatient. But we have time now, an infinite amount of time.
OLD MAN
(V.O.) Open his mind and then we’ll talk.
YOUNG SASHA
Oh all right. (turns to Young Bobby) Think of it as another way of communicating. Outside of this room, I’m touching your face while you sit on your bed. That’s the key: Tactile contact. I found that I have the gift naturally, but he somehow suppressed it, until he restored my memory. But the point is, as long as we touch, we can read each others’ minds, and go into our minds like this and create our own virtual reality!
A sofa appears, very regal.
YOUNG SASHA
I did that! With my imagination. Now you try. Think of something real to you.
Young Bobby still looks confused, then concentrates a moment. A robot appears.
YOUNG SASHA
That’s got it! I knew you’d get the hang of it. But there’s more. That bully you call grandfather wants me to rush through, not like the first time at all. We spent hours in here before I opened his mind.
YOUNG BOBBY
You opened his mind? But you’re my age.
YOUNG SASHA
He doesn’t want me to tell you. He thinks you’re not ready for it yet. But I’m ... we’re older than we look.
The old man appears, followed by an old woman. They dance for a moment, then disappear.
YOUNG SASHA
It was beautiful. (Sighs) He’s tapping on my shoulder now, threatening to break contact. Very well, we’ll rush it.
A door appears.
YOUNG SASHA
This is the door that opens your mind. Once you go through it, you’ll be able to read the minds of anyone you touch, but they won’t be able to read yours. They don’t have the gift. Go ahead and open it!
Young Bobby stands, watching the door.
YOUNG BOBBY
What if I don’t want to?
YOUNG SASHA
He’ll make your life miserable, your grandfather. But you must, because it opens up such a world of understanding. Oh the secrets I’ve learned.
Young Bobby approaches the door slowly, turns the know and the door opens. A faint glow comes from the other side.
YOUNG SASHA
Go ahead.
Young Bobby steps through.
INT. YOUNG BOBBY’S ROOM - NIGHT
Young Sasha stands in front of Young Bobby, hands on his face as before. Young Bobby blinks, looks around sleepily. Young Sasha also wakes and caresses his face. The door opens and Lorie comes in.
LORIE
Time to go Sasha.
YOUNG SASHA
But he doesn’t know how to use it, not fully.
LORIE
He’ll learn.
YOUNG BOBBY
Wait, what’s going on? Why do I feel so sleepy?
He lays down and goes to sleep.
YOUNG SASHA
He’ll think it’s all a dream now
Young Sasha turns to Lorie and touches her arm.
YOUNG SASHA
(Cont.) I can’t read you.
OLD MAN
(V.O.) No. It’s time to turn the clock back for you, Ms. Putin.
YOUNG SASHA
You won’t let me keep it? This isn’t what we agreed to. We agreed to be together forever if it worked!
OLD MAN
(V.O.) You agreed to be with me, Sasha, but he’s not me, not really.
YOUNG SASHA
Semantics. I won’t go!
Young Sasha falls over, asleep.
OLD MAN
(V.O.) Take her back to the memory room and we’ll see what we can do.

INT. YOUNG BOBBY’S BEDROOM - DAY
Young Bobby wakes, shakes his head a few times, gets up and plays with his robots. Lorie comes in.
LORIE
Bonjour Monsieur, etes-tu prete allons a France?
YOUNG BOBBY
Oui madame. (Pauses) Funny, I had a dream last night that someone came over.
LORIE
Mind playing tricks on you so close to our trip?
YOUNG BOBBY
Must be. (Shrugs and sighs, sings) Sur la pont, d’Avingnon, l’on y danse, l’on y danse.
EXT CHAMPS ELYSEE - DAY
Young Bobby sits on a bench overlooking the Champs Elysee in Paris, feeding pigeons. A short distance away, Lorie, Brad and the Old Man huddle.
LORIE
Are you certain you want this to happen?
OLD MAN
The earlier he meets his adversaries, the better.
LORIE
But he’ll meet her too. She won’t seem like an adversary to him.
OLD MAN
True, but it will be a fleeting memory. We’ll fill it with others.
Arthur Thomas, his wife JESSICA, Young Penny, Uncle Jack and his French girlfriend, YVETTE, approach the area. Young Bobby decides to bring out one of his robots, and sends it walking after a pigeon. Young Penny sees it, and is charmed. She sits next to him.
YOUNG PENNY
Bonjour!
YOUNG BOBBY
(Looks up) Bonjour.
Young Penny tilts her head.
YOUNG PENNY
English, or American?
YOUNG BOBBY
American. How did you know?
YOUNG PENNY
Your accent is flat. I’m American too!
YOUNG BOBBY
Really? I’m from Chicago.
YOUNG PENNY
I’m from a rinky-dink little town you’ve never heard of, but my family travels a lot.
Young Penny waves to her father and mother.
YOUNG PENNY
I’m Penny Thomas. What does your family do?
YOUNG BOBBY
Bobby, Bobby Timmons. Oh dad’s a lawyer and mom’s a doctor. This is the first trip we’ve taken outside the United States.
YOUNG PENNY
Oh, you’ll love Paris. It’s so... French.
She reaches out and touches Young Bobby’s arm. Young Bobby stiffens.
YOUNG PENNY
(Cont.) Well we’re on our way to Germany. My German isn’t very good, so I hope I learn more. Nice to meet you!
She blows him a kiss and rejoins her family. Lorie approaches Young Bobby.
YOUNG BOBBY
Nice girl. I (pause) felt something when she touched me. Like a soda can spraying out if you shake it too much. What does that mean?
LORIE
Sounds like she has an effervescent personality.
Young Bobby shrugs. A baseball drops from the sky and lands next to Young Bobby.
YOUNG BOBBY
Not again.
He picks up the baseball. Written on it: ‘Remember her. Penny Thomas. Save her.’ Young Bobby looks at Lorie, who turns away with a worried look on her face.
INT. ARTHUR THOMAS’ HOTEL ROOM, FRANKFURT - DAY.
The suite of rooms where the Thomas family is staying is filled with suitcases and other luggage. Jessica supervises valets. Young Penny comes in carrying a suitcase.
YOUNG PENNY
Mom, which one’s my room?
JESSICA
(points) At the far end, dear. Let the valets do their job.
YOUNG PENNY
I got it!
Young Penny drags her suitcase to her bedroom. Arthur Thomas comes in as the phone starts to ring. He answers.
ARTHUR THOMAS
Hello? Yes Felix, we’re just getting settled. (pause) Now? (crosses arms) I thought we went over this. (sighs) Oh very well. I suppose we can drive there. No, I don’t want to drag Penny all over Germany. She can stay with Yvette. Oh., I’m sure Jack won’t mind the drive. It will give us time to talk. All right, see you then.
He hangs up the phone.
ARTHUR THOMAS
(cont.) That bastard. I don’t know why I don’t fire him.
JESSICA
What is it?
ARTHUR THOMAS
Felix Lighter has called an emergency meeting of the Board of Directors in Bonn later today. He suggested we all drive down there, even Penny, but she’s tired enough from the plane ride here.
JESSICA
A nice leisurely drive down the autobahn sounds relaxing.
Arthur picks up the phone and calls Jack’s room.
ARTHUR THOMAS
Jack, Lighter called. Oh, he’s called you already? Fly? What do you think we’re made of, money? It’s a two hour drive at best. Besides, I’d like to talk to you. Penny can stay with Yvette if that’s all right with her. (sighs) All right, fly then, but it’s coming out of your pocket.
He hangs up the phone.
ARTHUR THOMAS
(Cont.) Says he’d rather fly in and out to spend more time with Yvette.
JESSICA
Why does he try to keep their relationship secret? Like we don’t know.
ARTHUR THOMAS
He’s trying to keep his reputation as a playboy.
INT. UNCLE JACK’S HOTEL ROOM - DAY
Uncle Jack hangs up the phone. Yvette sits on a couch.
UNCLE JACK
Can you watch Penny for a few hours?
YVETTE
Oui, She reminds me so much of Veronique.
UNCLE JACK
I think Arthur suspects, but Penny, she’s not to know, okay?
YVETTE
You think it would break her heart of she knew you were married?
UNCLE JACK
(smiles) Let’s just say I like being her role model.
INT. THOMAS CAR - DAY
The couple are driving on the autobahn. They are about halfway between Frankfurt and Bonn. A car comes up behind them. Arthur waves for it to pass. The car instead bumps them heavily from behind. Arthur barely maintains control.
ARTHUR THOMAS
What the devil is he doing?
Arthur slows down. The car behind him backs up a little, then roars past them. Just as the car passes, it bumps Arthur again. Arthur loses control and the car spins. They come to a stop in the middle of the road, perpendicular. A heavily laden truck crashes into them.
INT. CONFERENCE ROOM - DAY
Uncle Jack, Felix Lighter and several board members gather in the conference room. One of the phones rings, and Lighter answers.
LIGHTER
Yes? (Pause) What? (pause) Yes, he’s here. One moment.
Lighter hands the phone to Uncle Jack.
LIGHTER
There’s been a terrible accident.
Uncle Jack takes the phone. Lighter whispers to the other members of the board.
UNCLE JACK
This is Jack Thomas. (long pause, has a shocked look on his face.) Are you sure it’s them? (Pause) I see. Thank you. I’ll be in touch to (pause) make arrangements for the bodies.
Uncle Jack hangs up the phone. He turns to Lighter.
LIGHTER
Look Jack, we’re all very sorry to hear about this. And I realize this is a bad time, but we really need to talk about QSA.
UNCLE JACK
(sighs) Do what you think is best, Felix. I’m done here. I have to get back to Yvette and Penny and (pause) tell them the bad news.
Uncle Jack leaves, Lighter has a smile on his face.
INT. JACK THOMAS’ HOTEL ROOM - DAY
YOUNG Penny and Yvette play a game. The door opens Jack comes in. Young Penny jumps up and hugs him.
YOUNG PENNY
Uncle Jack! You’re back! Are mom and dad coming too?
Uncle Jack hugs her tightly.
YOUNG PENNY
Is something wrong?
UNCLE JACK
Your parents... were killed in an automobile accident. I came back as soon as I heard.
Young Penny stiffens in his hug.
UNCLE JACK
I want you to know that I’m here for you, sweetheart. I’ll take good care of you.
Yvette gives him a questioning look. Young Penny bursts into tears. Uncle Jack consoles here.
End of Act III