On January 17th, Jess and I decided to do another script writing challenge for 48 Hour Film Project practice. Our trial had the following specifics:
Name: Kasey (male) / Karan (female) Troutman
Occupation: Nuclear Engineer
Line of Dialogue: Moscow is a dirty place.
We came up with a loose plot:
The main character is lonely. His sister is getting married and wants to make sure he doesn’t show up stag. For both reasons, he has agreed to go on dates to find a potential companion. He stands up the first blind date, putting his sister on edge. He is in danger of upsetting their nuclear family. His best bud, a known womanizer, convinces him to attend a speed dating event in hopes of finding a date. He doesn’t find anyone. They’re all awful and not right for him. His sister makes him pick up her friend for the wedding – the one he stood up but he doesn’t know it. She turns out to be lovely and just what he’s looking for. (She can even mention she’s glad he’s not like this jerk who stood her up.) New girl is a veterinarian. He’s a dog walker. They hit it off.
Apartment or car or office, on phone – Adam on phone with his sister talking about how she wants him to not show up alone to her wedding, and that she had set him up on a blind date but he didn’t show. (“That’s not how I get to know people.” “Well, how would you know how to meet people? All you do is ”)
Restaurant – Scene with his buddy setting him up for speed dating; Same restaurant – Speed dating scene – goes through several speed date encounters, various cover stories
Same as first scene – Adam on phone with sister again, being asked to pick up her friend for the big day
Car – Picking up the friend for the big day, hitting it off, indirect reveal that she’s the blind date (not to her)
The script follows:
THE BLIND LEADING THE BLIND
INT. OFFICE - DAY Adam is talking on a PHONE, standing next to his DESK. We hear only his side of the conversation, with brief pauses between. Adam: (Impatient) No. No blind dates. No fixing me up. Adam’s face looks pained. He holds the phone at arms length while his sister berates him. Then he brings the phone to his ear. Adam: Yes. I’m an ass because she had to eat lunch by herself. Adam: People go to weddings alone all the time. It’s not the end of the world. Adam: You sure it’s the only time? Half of all weddings end in divorce. Adam: (Bordering on angry) Whatever. Have a nice bachelorette party. Adam hangs up the PHONE and sighs heavily. The phone rings again. Adam: (Angry) What?! Adam: (Really friendly) Oh, hey, man! What’s up? Adam: (continues friendly) Yeah, wings, beer, trivia. What’s not to like? See you tonight! Adam hangs up the phone again, putting it in his pocket.
INT. RESTAURANT - NIGHT Adam and best friend sit in a booth at a hip downtown bar having buffalo wings and drinks. Place gets crowded around them. Mike: I’m telling you, dog walking business is going to get you so much tail! Adam: (Gulping down beer) That’s gross. No, not the beer. Mike: Lady tail, not dog tail. Ladies love a man who’s good with animals. Maybe I could come by, help you out from time to time. Adam: Sure. Like when I’m lava surfing in Argentina or sky diving in Peru. Mike: Hell yes. If you die, can I get your shit? Hold that thought. I’ll be right back. Mike gets up from table. Crowd fills in the restaurant. Adam receives a text from sister: Text: Need you to pick up boutonnieres Saturday morning. Mike comes back. Adam: That was fast. Did you forget to shake it? Mike: I never forget to shake it. Speed Dating Emcee: (over microphone) Hi everyone! What a great night to meet some great people. Am I right? Adam: What’re we doing here? Mike: Getting you a date. Adam (CU) (face frozen in shock) Mike: I know what you’re thinking. Adam: How? Mike: It’s time to get back on the horse. Adam: No. No. No. No. Mike: Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Adam: No. No. No. Mike: Yes. Yes. Adam: No. Mike: YES! C’mon son! Hot woman walks up to the table. HOT WOMAN: Hi! I’m a little nervous. This is my first speed date. Are you guys doing this too? Mike and Adam: Yes. HOT WOMAN: Great. Hope to see you out there. Hot woman walks away. Mike: And you doubted me. (Clicks tongue) Mike holds name tag sticker out. Adam grabs it.
INT. RESTAURANT - NIGHT Adam sits at a table for two sipping his BEER. Main emcee table is next to him. BELL dings. Michelle sits down at the table opposite from him. Michelle: Hi there. Why don’t you tell me a little bit about yourself? Adam: Well, I’m not sure why I’m here. My friend kind of dragged me into this and my sister wants me to find a date for her wedding. Michelle: (unenthusiastically) How nice. Joanne sits opposite of him. All business Joanne: I like water skiing, biking and horses. I work as an analyst for an IT Firm. I’ve just recently moved here and I’m looking to meet new people. Adam: That sounds exhausting. I like to play video games and cry my loneliness into buckets of popcorn. Wendy sits opposite of him. Wendy: So, John, you’re a good-looking fellow. Why are you here? Adam: (rapid-talking auctioneer) Well, when I was 12 years old I had my first kiss behind the barn with a thirteen year old. After that I had a few different girlfriends in high school then I went to college where I met the woman who broke my heart nine different ways from Sunday. I dropped out of college and decided to work in an office part time while I got my dog walking business off the ground. Now my sister wants me to find a date for her wedding and my best friend thought it’d be a good idea to do that here. How do you do? Wendy: Um... what? Sarah sits opposite of him. Goth. She has blacked out the entire NAME TAG with the SHARPIE. She wears an ironic, happy shirt with a picture of lemons and the words, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” Cut back and forth twice each between Adam and Sarah, neither saying anything. Bell Dings. Sarah stands up and walks away. Adam: Well, good to get to know you. Karan sits opposite of him. Karan: I’m Karan Troutman. What do you do? Adam: I’m a nuclear engineer. Karan: Me too! What’s your alma mater? Adam: I went to school in Russia. Karan: Wow. That must’ve been exciting. Adam: Not really. Moscow is a dirty place. Karan: I’ve never been. Adam: Good. You’re lucky. Karan: Would you like my number? Adam: No. Karan: But I’m a nuclear engineer. You’re a nuclear engineer. That must mean something Adam: It means we’re done here. Adam reaches over and dings the main table bell
EXT. STREET - DAY Adam pulls up to the curb outside Tracy’s house. Tracy comes out of the house carrying BOUTONNIERES. She has a dog keychain. Adam gets out of the car and opens the door for her. Adam: Didn’t realize boutonniere means “beautiful woman.” Tracy: Thank you. Tracy gets in the car.
INT. CAR - DAY Tracy’s eyes follow Adam. Adam gets in the car. Tracy: Thanks for the ride. My car got impounded. Adam: Impounded? Tracy: I planned a pretty wild party. Adam: Did you have midgets? Tracy: They’re called little people. And no. But I’m pretty sure there was a goat involved. I was a little worried I would’ve had to take a cab. Adam: Why’s that? Tracy: Last time I was supposed to meet up with a guy, he never showed. Adam makes a pained face Tracy: Don’t worry. I’m sure you’ll show next time. Adam glances over at Tracy and smiles.
Our first read-through came in just under 5 minutes. Our second was more like 4:25. We decided we would actually like to shoot this one to give us practice doing over-the-shoulder shots. If it turns out, I’ll share the video! In the script, the only thing we missed for 48 Hour Film was the prop – lemons – but we figured there would be plenty of opportunity for having lemons in the scene somewhere.