FILM SCRIPTS

Short Film Scripts (10 mins):

The Call | Whitesands | Chaz The Friendly Crocodile of Dumfries | Sacrifice

Full Length Feature Film Scripts:

Operation Oboe | The Last Shepherd

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THE CALL

A short educational film script

FADE IN:
1 EXT. TOWN HIGH STREET – DAY

SANDY (12) hair unbrushed, wearing an Arctic Monkeys T-shirt, denims and trainers, drags a wooden stick along the wall of the town street. He observes an occupied hearse coming into view proceeding stately along the High street. He freezes. He watches as the hearse passes. He reads the word MUM (CLOSE ON) in white carnations on the side of the coffin. He turns round as the hearse goes by contemplating the contents of the flower draped box. He is stupefied. He watches till the hearse is out of sight. He wipes a tear from his eye. He turns and proceeds to his home street walking slowly and contemplatively, gently tapping the stick in his hand.

2 INT. SITTING ROOM – GROUND FLOOR FLAT – DAY

Elderly grey haired GAIL HANSON (87) sits reading the Daily Record by a lit fire. Her long skirt almost touches the floor. Her cardigan cuffs overlap her wrists. She hears the postman’s delivery splatter to the hall floor, puts down her paper, picks up her stick and moves towards the edge of her chair.
GAIL (V/O)
One, two, three….. up. …….. More fuel for the fire, no doubt.
She slowly gets up, walks through the hall to the front door.
3 INT. HALLWAY – DAY
GAIL (V/O)
Ah!, I wish they wouldn’t put leaflets through the mailbox.
She discards the mail drop items to the left with her stick. Then sees an officially marked brown envelope. She drags it with her stick to the hall wall, then props it up. She bends slowly to pick it up. She supports her back against the wall, opens the letter and reads it. She smiles. She shakes her head ruefully.
Dearie me, dearie me.…..£5 of Council Tax rebate!
4 EXT. PAVEMENT – DAY

Sandy reaches his home street. He sees something lying on the road by the kerb. He approaches. It is a cat. He cautiously bends over it. His right foot nudges it. The cat is clearly dead. He uses his stick to turn the cat over. His bully classmate MALKY is taller and fatter than Sandy. He approaches. He wears jeans, trainers and blue top marked MIKA with ‘Love Today’ written underneath the singer’s name.
MALKY
Sandy! What are you doing?
Leave it alone. It’s dead…….Come on.
SANDY
Yup, it’s dead all right. I suppose the bin man will get it.
Malky looks about the houses.
MALKY
Guess who’ll be dead next?
Sandy is puzzled by the remark.
SANDY
I don’t know. (pause)
Expect it could be my Dad.
MALKY
Your Dad? He’s not old, Sandy.
More likely to be your Mum. She’s an Alki.
Sandy is angry about the remark. He raises his voice.
SANDY
My Mum drinks because my Dad’s in hospital.
MALKY
(PAUSE)
Ok Ok …Then What about MR. Clark at number 36?
He’s not got long to go.
SANDY
But He still goes to football matches.
Malky points to Gail’s ground floor flat.
MALKY
Then what about that old lady at number 47?
I think she’s half dead anyway.
Yea, I don’t see much of her.
Malky puts his hands on his hips. He turns to Sandy.
MALKY
Maybe she is dead! (pause) Go and ring her belL Then we’ll know.
Malky looks threateningly at Sandy. Sandy frowns, he suspects trouble ahead.
SANDY
Don’t Malky. I don’t want to do it.
Malky grabs Sandy by his collar. Their heads are inches apart.
MALKY
I’ll beat you up!
You going to do it, or not?
Sandy is terrified. He speaks in a frightened high pitched voice.
SANDY
Ok. Ok Malky, I’ll do it. Let me go.
Malky takes his hands off Sandy. He takes a pace back.
MALKY
There’s nothing to it.
Ring her bell.
Then run round to that hedge over there.
Her eyesight’s no good.
Sandy walks along the pavement. He stops and looks back at Malky.
MALKY
Go on. …..Remember?…..
Malky raises his fists as if to challenge. Sandy starts off again and sees Malky enter a garden with a privet hedge to hide him. He looks around but no one is about. He walks more quickly to Number 47, he approaches the front door and places his finger on the doorbell.
5 INT. GAIL’S SITTING ROOM – DAY
Gail turns over a page of her newspaper as the doorbell rings. Gail sets off to open the door. She reaches the Hallway.
6 INT. HALLWAY – DAY
GAIL
I’m coming… I’m coming.
She opens the door but no one is there. An approaching man (GEORGE 76) in a flat cap, old sports jacked, bent and with a stick sees this activity.

7 EXT. FRONT DOOR PAVEMENT – DAY

GEORGE,
Miss Hanson, it’s dreadful what these kids are up to.
Nothing to do with themselves.
I know who he is.
I’ll speak to his mother. That is, if she’s sober.
A pity they can’t belt the kids these days.
GAIL
Ah nonsense!
This gives me some exercise
and they haven’t done any damage George. Let’s forget it.
Gail closes the front door with a smile on her face and a shake of her head.

8 INT. SITTING ROOM – LATER

The clock approaches three. The telephone rings beside Gail’s chair. She lifts the receiver.
GAIL (V/O)
Hello, …speak up….Aye, Miss Hanson.
…Oh I see… Yes. Oh don’t bother.
It was not so bad. I was not upset….
To hospital this evening? …OK …Yes……Well, all right then. Tomorrow morning at 10 am? Aye, that’s fine by me.
Thank you. Thanks for ringing. Bye.
9 INT. HALLWAY – NEXT DAY

At 9.55am Gail with her stick walks to the hallway. She takes the latch off the front door and leaves the door slightly ajar. She returns to her Sitting Room, leaving the front door open and the sitting room ajar.

10 INT. SITTING ROOM DAY

She places a log on the fire and sits down. She does not have to wait long. The doorbell rings.
GAIL
(shouts) The door’s open, come in. I’m expecting you.
10 INT. HALLWAY DAY

Sheepishly Sandy opens the door. He is wearing smart grey trousers and a clean white Tottenham Hotspur jersey. His hair is smartly combed. He steps into the hall and looks around the stairwell. He looks apprehensive. He feels guilty. He stands still in the hall.
GAIL (V/O)
Well, close the front door and come away through. I don’t want to die of a chill!
Come on, I won’t bite you!
Sandy walks through the hall. He stops at the Sitting Room door and knocks twice on the wooden panel.

11 INT SITTING ROOM – DAY
GAIL
Well, well. So you do have some manners after all!
In you come. Come over here.
Let me see you. Aha. Just a young lad.
Sandy stands uneasily looking down. He places his left shoe on top of his right shoe. He looks at his feet.
GAIL
Well sonny, what have you to say?
SANDY
I’m sorry Miss.
GAIL
Sorry? (pause) What for?
There is a further pause. Sandy struggles for a moment to think what to say.
SANDY
Sorry for……. ringing your bell.
Gail nods her head.
GAIL
Then you must have wanted to visit me?
Sandy looks at Gail briefly then looks back at his awkward stance. His hands are clasped behind his back. He does not speak.
GAIL
Here, bring me two tangerines from the fruit bowl.
Sandy looks up and to the left, he sees the table on which the fruit bowl stands. He approaches it and takes two tangerines. (CLOSE ON) He brings them to Gail. She gives him one then points him to a chair and he sits down.
They peel their tangerines and delicately eat each segment in silence. Gail throws her peel into the fire. Sandy copies her. Occasionally Sandy looks up to catch Gail’s eye. She smiles at him when he does.
GAIL
So what’s your name then?
SANDY
Sandy Grant.
GAIL
Alexander Grant. That’s Your Sunday name. A fine name too.
So do you want to be a campanologist when you grow up?
Sandy draws a blank expression. Gail smiles.
GAIL (CONT’D)
A campanologist rings bells.
So he dose. It doesn’t pay well! But if you want to do that, well, that’s ok.
Gail laughs to herself. Sandy does not laugh but a smile begins to appear on his face as he warms to this seemingly eccentric old woman.
GAIL (CONT’D)
Now, I don’t think a clever lad like you wants to ring bells
all his life.
But let’s leave it there.
You said sorry and I know you’ll not do that again.
Because you know, I’m not so good on my feet you see.
Sandy looks concerned for her.
SANDY
Have you sore feet?
GAIL
Yes Sandy, sore feet…all right,
(Pause) sore back, (pause)…sore legs
and sore eyes too.
It’s not fun being as old as I am.
Sandy looks up at Gail.
SANDY
When you’re old, is it just that you get slow or is it always sore as well?
GAIL
I can’t move as quickly as I used to but sometimes it’s my head that bothers me most.
When I think of my life (pause)
I was in charge of all the school cleaners, you know?
Then I think of what’s left of it……(pause)..ah..(pause)
You see that picture on the mantelpiece?
Sandy stands up and approaches the mantelpiece. (CLOSE ON) Picture of a young man is in a frame on the mantelpiece.
GAIL (CONT’D)
That was my son, John. Fell off his motorbike. No crash helmet. Going too fast. He was only eighteen. He was a Spurs fan too! Just like you! I’ll tell you something else.
When he was your age,(pause)
He used to ring doorbells and run away too!
Gail smiles at the memory while Sandy looks reflective.
Sandy looks into the fireplace. (CLOSE ON) The flames lick around the logs. Tears well up in his eyes. He looks distressed.
GAIL (CONT’D)
Now, now, what’s upsetting you?
Sandy wipes his eyes and sobs. He opens his hankie wide and cries into it, slowly revealing more of his troubled face, he talks slowly.
SANDY
The Hospice phoned last night, not long after we visited him.
My Dad died at tea time.
He had cancer.
Gail gathers Sandy to her bosom. She rocks him gently. She pats his back, her head resting on his shaking shoulder.
GAIL
You poor soul. You poor wee soul.
After a few more moments, Sandy breaks away from Gail to face her. He is sobbing. Yet also smiling at Gail.
SANDY
Would you come with me and Mum to the funeral on Saturday?…. Please.
Gail smiles at him. She nods her head. She gives him another hug. While still hugging him, she turns her head towards the mantelpiece to view her deceased son, while her face rests on Sandy’s shoulder.
GAIL
Of course I will, my wee man. Of course I will.

The camera pulls back then focuses on flames licking the logs. Reds and oranges mingle and slowly go out of focus.
(FADE OUT)


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EXT WHITESANDS DUMFRIES DAY

Elderly man (DEREK) walks slowly with his stick along by
Deer Park. He feels a sharp pain in his calf. He stops,
bends down to rub it and sees a conker roll away from him.
He looks around him. He sees nothing and continues to walk.
He finds a bench and sits down. He rubs his leg again.

Author: Miller Caldwell
Date published: To be confirmed
Format: Adobe PDF
Number of pages: 12
Size: 113 Kb

 

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Chaz The Friendly Crocodile of Dumfries

A short educational film script
AN EDUCATIONAL ANIMATED SHORT FILM SCRIPT FOR PRIMARY SCHOOL CHILDREN

1 EXT DUMFRIES DEVORGILLA BRIDGE DAY.

A car crashes over Deverogilla Bridge in the centre of Dumfries town landing upside down in the River Nith. Crowds run to the banks to see the tragic scene but are more horrified to see a Crocodile appear from the churling waters. Shouts of horror are heard. Chaz gives a splash with his tail and goes under water to bring a 5 year old child, Colin, his mother and his father up one by one onto the upturned car. People applaud his actions…….

Author: Miller Caldwell
Date published: 28th Feb 2008
Format: Adobe PDF
Number of pages: 12
Size: 112 Kb

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Chaz The Friendly Crocodile of Dumfries


Sacrifice

FADE IN:

EXT 1918 LAVENTIE TRENCH 23RD. APRIL DAY

Mist rolls over the resting Seaforth Highlanders in the
Laventie Trench where letters are being read, tea drunk
from tin mugs and Sergeant RUARI GRANT (32) passes by
giving words of encouragement. He stops briefly beside a
private holding three letters.

SERGEANT GRANT
What, more letters for you?

PRIVATE REID
Aye Sarge. ‘Am a loved man.
A gentle roar greets Private Reid’s comment…..
Author: Miller Caldwell
Date published: 07-04-08
Format: Adobe PDF
Number of pages: 9
Size: 58 Kb

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Operation Oboe

FILM SCRIPT by Miller Caldwell
Adapted from his novel of the same name.

THE PREMISE

Widowed Fleur returns to Scotland briefly on the eve of the Second Word War with her son lost to the German Army. But this loner is sent by the British MI 6 to West Africa on an espionage mission finding a dark truth amid the compromised Basel Mission station and when personal disaster strikes, a new romance evolves.

Author: Miller Caldwell
Date published: 07-04-08
Format: Adobe PDF
Number of pages: 9
Size: 58 Kb

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The Last Shepherd

A story by Jim Ramsay
Film script by Miller Caldwell

THE PREMISE

A successful but arrogant banker has a spring holiday with his family in rural south west Scotland where his values and his attitude cause mayhem. The last shepherd shows the errors of his city ways with assistance of a mysterious mute benefactor whose actions climax in a tragic but resolute ending touched by romance.

The Last Shepherd film script

AN OUTLINE

This film is set in rural south west Scotland over one week in Spring. The Protagonist is a recently widowed shepherd, Jim McKenzie, who is the victim of a road accident. This unfortunate status does not prevent him uttering frequent rebukes to Rupert, the antagonist, throughout the story. Rupert Parker – Smyth is on holiday with his wife Suzanna and their two children, Edward and Victoria. They fail to understand the lifestyle of the country and its significance to their urban and social life back home in the Home Counties. Rupert knocks over Jim and his loyal collie Jess, failing to report the accident. The theme of the morality of individuals is established early.

Frequent misunderstandings are at the heart if the story. As the antagonist learns the ways of the countryside and its economy, the rites of passage for the city family are underway. But there is a natural desire for justice when Rupert falls foul of the law. His hit and run motoring incident brings him into the local court, where a magistrate settles the matter creatively making Rupert the shepherd’s helper for the duration of his spring holiday.

In this unique film, a main actor is Tam, who acts mute throughout. We learn of his heroic past later on in the script and why he wears a mask but his silence is overcome by dramatic and quick thinking actions of supreme fitness, again, the antagonist fails to understand his actions and his motivation as they are not verbal. Tam not only has foresight but brings a panacea to each successive problem. In saving Jim Mckenzie’s life at the start of the film, Tam ensures the respect and trust of the last shepherd. For Jim, It is a debt he has to re-pay.

The community rally round Jim McKenzie, none more so than a young female veterinary surgeon, Jo. She provides practical support for Jim’s farming problems and his injured sheepdog Tess but there is an observable romantic relation flourishing by investigative means initially. Jim is slow to appreciate her advances but true love surfaces before the final scene. By the conclusion, we have a devoted loving couple.

The mysterious Tam’s past comes to light when two SAS officers turn up presuming he had died. They explain Tam’s activities water divining while serving in Afghanistan as an Oxfam Aid worker, assisting the Royal Engineers’ Regiment. For his security, he wares the uniform of that Regiment. They find Tam very much alive to their astonishment. (This story within a story could be filmed as action, rather than a lengthy narrative dialogue.)

Edward and Victoria are very much the children of Rupert with their comments supporting their father. However when they seek a mobile phone signal to assuage their text and call desires, they place themselves in extreme danger as the weather closes in. They go missing and Tam takes on the responsibility to find them. Still Rupert finds fault in what he sees as the ineptitude in the efforts of Jim, the SAS men, Jock, Jo and Bob in organising an immediate rescue as snow mounts in driving blizzards. Jim places his trust in Tam but when he discovers Tam’s empty sleeping bag on Edward’s bed, his anxiety for his safety increases.

A dramatic helicopter rescue saves both children and draws the story to its penultimate conclusion but not before Jim sets off in Rupert’s Range Rover on a mercy mission to save Tam. It is a journey no man would wish to repeat as the Range Rover topples over a snowy ravine and lands on its roof. Tipped over by a JCB, Jim continues shakily with an impromptu Police escort to Dumfries and Galloway Royal Infirmary. As he comes round in his hospital bed with Jo and Bob by his bedside, a sudden realisation why he is there motivates Jim to see how Tam is faring in the same hospital. Another spat with Rupert ensues as they confront each other in the ward corridor but a Consultant takes Jim and the party aside to reveal the extent of Tam’s injuries. As his next of kin, the consultant seeks their permission to turn off the life supporting machine which was keeping him alive. Brain dead, the switch is turned off. Tam’s life ends.

At his funeral, Jim slips and lets the coffin dip. Rupert steps forward to retrieve the falling coffin but Jim recovers and declares him not worthy in his eyes to even touch the coffin of one so brave. It is his final venomous spat. The whole village turns out to honour Tam as he is laid to rest.

Rupert calls on Jim prior to his family’s departure home, where Jim points out the selfish borrowing of Tam’s sleeping bag contributed to his friend’s death. But Jim is tired of berating Rupert. Instead he seeks Rupert’s word not to mention the sleeping bag and its fatal consequences to Edward.

The final scene shows Jo to be an integral part of Jim’s new life and into that budding relationship Jo produces a new collie pup. With no hesitation Jim names the dog Tam and together Jim takes the puppy out on to the hills as if to begin his initiation as a sheep dog. The puppy yelps, Jim looks up to the horizon. Poignantly, an image of a masked man appears in the distant mist and waves; the man has an uncanny resemblance to the late Tam and leaves the viewer with a thought of revelation as he then withdraws into the advancing mist. Then it’s time for Jim and wee Tam to return home.

Footnote:

The Last Shepherd is a Personal Drama with a strong sense of The Desire for Justice. Tam, a fascinating silent character, is also the Character Who Can Not be Put Down and has his own story to tell, within the story. The genre of Dramatic Romance drifts though the script and for ‘Townies’ viewing, the Rites of Passage are gained though understanding rural working practices. It is a family film to be enjoyed and a timely comeuppance for a wealthy banker. The film brings knowledge of rural ways, excitement throughout and romance set in spectacular rural scenery in Dumfries & Galloway.

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