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Characters
Kelly McLuhan
Kelly is in her mid twenties. She has brown hair, pale blue eyes and has a plain, stern look to her. I always
pictured Maggie Gyllenhaal when writing her. Kelly always seems like she has the weight of the world on
her shoulders. Something is eating away at her, but she tries to put on a brave face for those around her.
Brandon McLuhan
Brandon is Kelly's son. He's aged about five. He has a cherubic look to him, with a shock of red hair and
freckles. He has a playful and inquisitive nature. Everything and anything is a puzzle and wonder to him. His
attention flits from stimulus to stimulus, hinting at problems beneath the surface.
Angie Douglas
Angela Douglas is Kelly's co-pilot/sensor operator in the drone program. She's slightly older, and more
experienced, than Kelly. Where Kelly is cautious and introspective, Angela is impulsive and snarky. Despite
their different personalities the pair are friends outside of work. She's a good friend to Kelly, but her
personal outlook on the work they do is a million miles away from Kelly's -- Douglas sleeps easy at night.
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PAGE ONE (7 PANELS)
1.1
EXTERIOR. DAY. BLACK SMOKE coils up towards a cloudless, pale blue sky.
1 CAPTION: I’ve been here before.
2 CAPTION: A family barbecue. Flames licking at burnt flesh.
1.2
PAN UP - a BLACK DOT is visible in the sky as the smoke thins.
3 CAPTION: A smiling stranger. The wrong word in the right context.
1.3
The BLACK DOT moves towards us. Wings are visible. Clearly a DRONE.
4 CAPTION: Date at the movies. Images the viewer may find disturbing.
5 CAPTION: Never apart. Breadcrumbs back to you.
1.4
Nothing but black.
Letterer’s note: Anytime a callsign has a caption (Shogun,GreenPred, Ayrie, etc) it should look like it’s been
taken from an IRC chat screen. Maybe give different text colours to each user.
(
http://cdn.makeuseof.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/xchat.jpg?2129ca
).
6 LEATHERFOOT (CAP): Target neutralised, Ayrie.
7 GREENPRED (CAP): Don’t worry about the boy.
1.5
WIDE PANEL. INTERIOR. MORNING. We’re in a small, cluttered bathroom as KELLY’s tired reflection
stares back at us from the mirror above the sink. She wears a tank top and jogging bottoms, her hair up,
her eyes puffy and red.
8 CAPTION: Back to the desert half a world away.
9 CAPTION: Back to the desert I carry with me.
10 GREENPRED (CAP): Looked like it was just a dog.
(CONT’D)
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PAGE ONE CONTINUED
1.6
WIDE, FIXED PANEL: Suddenly, standing behind KELLY, near the bathroom door, is an expressionless
YOUNG AFGHAN BOY aged about five or six dressed in simple clothes
(http://i.telegraph.co.uk/multimedia/archive/03040/Kabulmain_3040221b.jpg).
11 CAPTION: The vultures pick at my salvation.
12 CAPTION: I’m walking in circles.
13 AYRIE (CAP): Leatherfoot, can you confirm?
1.7
INSET PANEL: CLOSE UP on KELLY. Intense. Unflinching. Staring straight at us.
14 CAPTION: I’m walking in circles.
15 CAPTION: Lost.
16 AYRIE (CAP): Leatherfoot?
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PAGE TWO (6 PANELS)
2.1
WIDE PANEL. MORNING. CUT TO: KELLY standing near a formica table in the middle of a small, but
homely, kitchen. A sink, a small worktop and a microwave sit underneath the only window. A yard or two
away, in the middle of the room is the table. Out of shot, on the other side of the kitchen, is a fridge.
KELLY wears the same clothes as the previous page as she serves PANCAKES onto a plate in front of her
son, BRANDON. He sits at the table wearing pyjamas and, oddly, a NECKTIE tied around his head,
bandana style. He looks more interested in the TOYS in front of him than anything resembling breakfast.
1 CAPTION: You’re being bolder than usual. Louder.
2 KELLY: Breakfast, Brandon. Toys after.
3 BRANDON: Iknowbut --
4 KELLY: We had a deal, remember?
5 SFX (From Kelly’s pocket): Boop boop ding
6 CAPTION: No name. No face. Just dislodged feelings rising from the depths.
2.2
KELLY turns her back to the table, glancing at the CELL PHONE now in her hand (lets just make it an
iPhone).
7 CAPTION: You never leave.
8 CAPTION: You were never welcome.
2.3
Kelly’s phone fills the panel, on the screen we can a chat thread in the Messages app. The name at the top
of the chat thread is Asshole. The thread reads:
ASSHOLE: I need to see him, Kel. He’s my son too.
KELLY: You said this before.
ASSHOLE: I know. This is different. We do this your way, okay?
2.4
BRANDON has set his toys down. He eyes the pancakes suspiciously.
9 CAPTION: A wound full of regret grown septic.
(CONT’D)
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PAGE TWO CONTINUED
2.5
View from inside the FRIDGE, the door open, as KELLY reaches in to grab some milk.
10 CAPTION: Ripe, full and ready to burst, your mantra smeared across my brainpan.
11 KELLY: Alright, Brandon...
2.6
We’re looking at the open fridge door, we can see KELLY leaning into the fridge still, but the focus of the
panel is a LETTER pinned by magnets to the fridge door. The letter is emblazoned with the header from
Brandon’s elementary school. It’s to a Miss Kelly McLuhan. The legible part reads:
Dear Miss McLuhan,
This letter is a reminder of your appointment at 11:30AM on Friday, March 31st with Principal Metcalfe. The
meeting is to discuss Brandon’s recent performance and behaviour at school.
12 KELLY (OFF): you’d better be finished.
13 CAPTION: “Trust the mission”.
14 SFX: Boop boop ding
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PAGE THREE (7 PANELS)
3.1
KELLY is back at the table, phone still in one hand, carton of milk in the other. BRANDON looks up at her
from his empty plate, beaming with pride.
1 KELLY: Are you kidding me?
2 BRANDON: What?
3 CAPTION: I close my eyes.
3.2
Beneath the kitchen table, BUTCH, a Jack Russell, eats what’s left of Brandon’s pancake.
4 BRANDON (OFF): I ate it all.
5 CAPTION: White hot infrared flickers into life.
3.3
On BRANDON. Butter wouldn’t melt.
6 KELLY (OFF): Have you seen Butch?
7 BRANDON: Nope.
8 CAPTION: I open my mouth to scream.
3.4
On KELLY, now sitting, smiling back at Brandon.
9 CAPTION: Signals burst and fire across continents.
10 KELLY: You sure? Small dog. Loves badly burnt pancakes.
11 SFX: Boop boop ding.
3.5
CUT TO: the phone screen. The message log looks glitched. Two new messages read:
UNKNOWN SENDER: Ayrie.
UNKNOWN SENDER: Eyes on target.
3.6
TIGHT ON KELLY, weary and resigned, the phone on the table in front of her.
12 CAPTION: Always running, always in the spotlight.
(CONT’D)
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PAGE THREE CONTINUED
3.7
MATCH CUT TO: KELLY in the same position as the last panel (panel size should be the same too), but
we’ve changed location. She now wears a HEADSET and FLIGHT OVERALLS (http://bit.ly/1rb0VHL) and
sits in a high backed chair. We can’t see where we are yet, but it’s darker here, the dim glow of a bank of
monitors coming from in front of Kelly from off panel.
13 CAPTION: The collective coalesce in the datastream, waiting on my word.
14 GREENPRED (CAP): Give us a clear picture.
15 KELLY: That’s five. Pay up, Douglas.
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PAGE FOUR (7 PANELS)
4.1
KELLY leans forward in her chair. She smiles smugly. Next to her sits DOUGLAS, smirking. DOUGLAS
wears flight overalls too.
1 DOUGLAS: Four. You’re counting the guy with the limp twice.
2 KELLY: Youth trumps experience. My eyes actually work.
3 DOUGLAS: Your goddamn mouth works, I’ll give you that.
4.2
CUT TO: a monitor feed. An IRC chat program. We can see various chat names. We’ve got the “customer”
(GreenPred) the person running the mission, we have the drone (Ayrie), and even teams on the ground
(Shogun/Leatherfoot). There are other names in the chatroom, but they don’t have to be speaking. They’re
all watching. Wilful observers. The transcript reads:
GREENPRED: Feed’s still glitchy this end.
OVERSEER: Copy, Treehouse. We have
five
MAM’s*, all armed. Objective Sentinel is with them.
SHOGUN: Confirmed, compound in sight from the ground. We see the vehicles.
LEATHERFOOT: We have eyes on the crossroads, no activity here.
4.3
WIDE PANEL: Our first glimpse at where we are. KELLY, her back to us, sits at a drone control panel.
DOUGLAS, the Sensor Operator, sits in the seat next to her. The trailer is cramped and claustrophobic (8 ft
wide, 8 ft tall and 20 ft long).
On the main monitor (and a few others) we see a compound somewhere in Afghanistan. It consists of a
large, flat structure with a few small buildings scattered around it, surrounded by a high wall and the desert.
Parked outside the main compound building are an SUV and two TECHNICALS.
Reference: https://www.evernote.com/l/AARRiYPrzmlPtZsaaVDcEfYd0-5pgcadikI
4 KELLY: You think any of them know?
5 DOUGLAS: About your mouth? Probably.
6 KELLY: Can it, asshat.
(CONT’D)
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PAGE FOUR CONTINUED
4.4
WIDE PANEL: On the drone’s feed we see five ARMED MEN in robes and headscarves making their way to
the vehicles. In the middle of the group is a TALL MAN wearing similar clothes to the others, but with an
M65 field jacket over his robes. This is the target, OBJECTIVE SENTINEL. He waves away a DOG bounding
around him in circles.
7 SHOGUN (CAP): Ayrie, Objective Sentinel is on the move. We’re going to lose them once they
leave the compound.
8 DOUGLAS (OFF): Do I think they’re about to die? No. I think they’re clueless.
4.5
INSET inside 4.4: TIGHT ON KELLY.
9 DOUGLAS (OFF): No-one sees it coming, Kel.
10 AYRIE (CAP): Roger, Shogun. Eyes on convoy, now heading east away from the compound.
4.6
WIDE PANEL: The drone feed. The image now ‘white hot’ infrared as the CONVOY drives down a dusty
road. Nothing but desert surrounds them.
Infrared reference:
http://www.bible.ca/archeology/bible-archeology-jerusalem-temple-mount-infrared-al-kas-552am.jpg
11 DOUGLAS (OFF): That’s half the fun.
12 GREENPRED (CAP): Ayrie, JTAC is coming online, prepare for 9-line.
13 AYRIE (CAP): Roger that.
4.7
INSET inside 4.6; TIGHT ON Kelly’s HAND pressing the button on top of the joystick.
14 KELLY (OFF): Boom.
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PAGE FIVE (6 PANELS)
5.1
WIDE PANEL: A drone feed, ‘white hot’ infrared. An AERIAL SHOT as the CONVOY begins to pull over.
1 KELLY (OFF): They’re stopping.
2 KELLY (OFF): Why are they stopping?
5.2
On DOUGLAS, amused at this turn of events.
3 DOUGLAS: When you gotta go, you --
5.3
On KELLY, confused at the absurdity of what she thinks is going on.
4 KELLY: Jesus, are they running?
5 KELLY: You can’t --
5.4
KELLY, pale as a ghost. Maybe lose the background to ratchet focus on her reaction.
6 KELLY (SMALL): Shit.
5.5
WIDE PANEL: A drone feed, normal imagery, as we focus on the idled SUV, the rear door flung open. A
WOMAN, dressed in traditional garb, clutches a YOUNG BOY as she runs away from the SUV.
It may not be apparent straight away, but this is the same YOUNG BOY that Kelly saw in the mirror in the
first scene.
7 AYRIE (CAP): GreenPred, we have a raven and crow with the objective.
5.6
INSET PANEL: On KELLY, panicked.
8 KELLY: Where the hell did they come from?
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PAGE SIX (6 PANELS)
6.1
On DOUGLAS, grim.
1 AYRIE (CAP): GreenPred, are you seeing this?
2 DOUGLAS: Too late to guide it wide.
6.2
On KELLY, confused, one of her hands gripping her headset, trying to adjust it.
Letterers note: the radio dialogue here should have musical notes around them to signify song lyrics.
3 RADIO (LYRICS): I know you’re hurting.
4 KELLY: -- the hell is going on?
6.3
CUT TO: the drone feed, white hot infrared -- the WOMAN and BOY continue to run into the desert.
NO COPY
6.4
TIGHTER ON the BOY, phantom-like in white hot infrared as he points up at the drone.
NO COPY
6.5
On KELLY, losing her shit, hand clutched around the microphone on her headset.
5 RADIO (LYRICS): But I just need you to stop.
6 KELLY: Can you hear that? Where is it --
6.6
FIXED PANEL: ON KELLY, mouth agape, as the gloom of the control room is lit up by the flare of an
explosion on the monitors.
7 CAPTION: This isn’t fire and forget anymore.
8 LEATHERFOOT (CAP): Target neutralised, Overseer.
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PAGE SEVEN (5 PANELS)
7.1
The glare from the monitors dims, bathing KELLY in shadow.
1 GREENPRED (CAP): Don’t worry about the boy.
2 GREENPRED (CAP): Looked like it was just a dog.
7.2
MATCH CUT TO: KELLY, in civilian clothes, as she stares straight ahead solemn faced. She’s sat in a chair
in a brightly lit office. We can’t see it yet, but this is the principal’s office at Brandon’s school.
3 CAPTION: I go home.
4 CAPTION: I remember.
5 VOICE (OFF): Miss McLuhan...
7.3
On the PRINCIPAL sat behind his desk -- a jovial looking man in his late forties. Behind him we can see a
bookshelf, a few diplomas on the wall maybe or some bright and cheery art.
6 CAPTION: I sleep.
7 CAPTION: I remember.
8 PRINCIPAL: ...you don’t need to worry.
7.4
FIXED PANEL: The PRINCIPAL, still smiling. A used car salesman selling bullshit Kelly isn’t buying.
9 CAPTION: I look at my son.
10 CAPTION: And I remember.
11 PRINCIPAL: We just feel Brandon would be better served at a school suited to his needs.
7.5
Back ON KELLY, concerned.
12 KELLY: I don’t -- what’s wrong with him?
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PAGE EIGHT (7 PANELS)
8.1
On the PRINCIPAL, the same rictus grin, skipping around the words he can’t use.
1 PRINCIPAL: Look, Brandon’s a bright boy.
2 PRINCIPAL: But he has real trouble engaging with others...
3 GREENPRED (CAP): You’re straying outside mission parameters, Ayrie
8.2
CUT TO: BRANDON in a chair outside the office, idly kicking his feet back and forth, not a care in the
world.
4 PRINCIPAL (FROM DOOR): ...and, if I’m honest, with the curriculum too.
8.3
Back in the office - ON KELLY as she begins to lose her composure.
5 GREENPRED (CAP): Keep your eyes on the objective.
6 PRINCIPAL (OFF): Are you okay, Miss McLuhan?
8.4
KELLY steels herself. She’s not going to cry in front of this jerk.
7 KELLY: Okay, so what are my options?
8.5
Back on the PRINCIPAL. The back wall of the office has disappeared. Instead we see endless DESERT and
a pale blue, cloudless sky.
8 PRINCIPAL: Only one I’m afraid.
8.6
CUT TO: a WORM’s EYE VIEW of KELLY, back in her flight overalls, and no longer in the principal’s office.
Above her is that familiar blue sky.
9 GREENPRED (CAP): Trust in the mission.
8.7
WIDE PANEL: we ZOOM OUT to establish the location as KELLY walks away from the DRONE TRAILER,
on the left side of the panel, and towards a CHAIN LINK FENCE on the right. Beyond the fence lies nothing
but desert.
10 KELLY (SMALL): Shit.
11 KELLY: Goddamn fuck and piss.
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PAGE NINE (5 PANELS)
9.1
KELLY leans forward, interlocking her fingers with the chain link fence.
NO COPY
9.2
KELLY, fingers still clutching the fence, doubles over and vomits.
1 KELLY: Huuahk
9.3
A shot from Kelly’s POV. We’re looking down at the sandy floor and a puddle of VOMIT.
2 VOICE (OFF): You gonna eat that or what, McLuhan?
9.4
MATCH CUT TO: a shot looking down at a PLATE of FRIES and a greasy looking BURGER. The table and
cutlery look cheap and tacky.
3 VOICE (OFF): Kel?
9.5
INTERIOR. NIGHT. KELLY, in civilian clothes, sits in a booth in a small diner. It’s late evening. The food
from the previous panel sits in front of her on the table along with an empty bottle of beer and a freshly
opened one. She’s deep in thought, toying with her food. Her PHONE also sits on the table.
4 DOUGLAS (OFF): You’ve been making eyes at that burger for ten minutes.
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PAGE TEN (6 PANELS)
10.1
DOUGLAS, also in civilian clothes, sits across from Kelly in the booth. She’s nursing a bottle of beer, her
food already polished off.
1 DOUGLAS: Look, Brandon will be okay. You’ll be okay. It’ll all be okay.
10.2
KELLY stops toying with her food as she finally makes eye contact with Douglas.
NO COPY
10.3
On DOUGLAS, *so* tired of this shit.
2 DOUGLAS: Shit on a stick, Kel. This again?
3 DOUGLAS: Quit picking that scab.
10.4
WIDE PANEL: a TWO SHOT on the pair sat opposite each other. DOUGLAS on the left, KELLY on the right.
The diner isn’t busy. Just a few customers here and there.
5 DOUGLAS: It was a dog. You have to trust --
6 KELLY: No. Don’t feed me their crap.
7 KELLY: You can’t seriously believe them.
10.5
On DOUGLAS, mulling the question over, fingers fidgeting with the neck of her beer.
NO COPY
10.6
FIXED: On DOUGLAS.
8 DOUGLAS: I don’t.
9 DOUGLAS: But what’s the alternative?
10 CAPTION: The needle’s already skipping.
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PAGE ELEVEN (6 PANELS)
11.1
TWO SHOT on DOUGLAS and KELLY as a WOMAN and CHILD pass their table in the foreground. .
1 CAPTION: Your song starts over.
2 KELLY: The truth.
3 DOUGLAS: The truth is we’re pilots. We fly. We follow orders. Things go right, things go wrong.
That’s it.
4 JUKEBOX (LYRICS): I know baby.
11.2
ON KELLY as she turns in the booth to face the wall behind her.
5 CAPTION: But I’m tired of dancing.
11.3
ON the JUKEBOX sitting against a wall. The YOUNG BOY from the drone feed leans nonchalantly against
the jukebox, blood streaming down his face.
6 JUKEBOX (LYRICS): I know you’re hurting.
7 CAPTION: I’m coming apart
11.4
WIDE PANEL. CUT TO: the drone feed, white hot infrared. The WOMAN and YOUNG BOY, both staring up,
like rabbits in the headlights.
8 JUKEBOX (LYRICS/TAILLESS): But I just need you to stop.
9 CAPTION: ...and you’re seeping through the cracks.
11.5
WIDE PANEL. Back ON KELLY in the diner as she continues to stare towards us/the jukebox.
10 JUKEBOX (LYRICS): I just need you to breathe.
11 SFX: Boop boop ding
11.6
WIDE PANEL. CUT BACK TO: the drone feed, white hot infrared. The convoy in flames, a smaller fire
burning where the young boy and woman were seconds ago.
12 CAPTION: Where does it all end?
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PAGE TWELVE (6 PANELS)
12.1
CUT TO: KELLY, in the control room. Flight overalls, etc. Solemn. Taking in what just happened.
Letterer’s note: Unknown Sender captions should be rendered as if they’re from the iPhone Messages app
we glimpsed earlier in the kitchen scene.
1 UNKNOWN SENDER (CAP): You know when it ends.
12.2
On DOUGLAS, solemn too, staring straight ahead.
NO COPY
12.3
On KELLY, breaking the silence.
2 VOICE (OFF): Mom...
12.4
MATCH CUT TO: KELLY, in civilian clothes, sitting in the drivers seat of a beat up station wagon.
3 UNKNOWN SENDER (CAP): When you complete your mission.
4 BRANDON (OFF): ...Butch kinda smells.
5 KELLY: I know, buddy. But we’re almost there.
12.5
INSET PANEL: Tight on KELLY’s eyes checking the rear view mirror.
6 UNKNOWN SENDER (CAP): Keep your eyes on the objective.
12.5
WIDE PANEL: KELLY driving, her eyes still focused on the rear view mirror. The shot is through the
windshield. We can see BRANDON sitting in the back. Behind him, in the boot, is BUTCH, separated by a
cage divider. Outside, the desert landscape rushes by.
7 BRANDON: What are you looking for?
8 KELLY: Birds.
9 BRANDON: Do birds live in the desert?
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PAGE THIRTEEN (5 PANELS)
13.1
On KELLY, eyes still on the rear view mirror.
1 KELLY: Sure, they live in all kinds of places.
2 RADIO (LYRICS): I just need you to stop.
3 BRANDON (OFF): Where are we going?
13.2
On KELLY as she reaches in to change gear.
4 RADIO (LYRICS): I just need you to breathe.
5 KELLY: The park, baby, I already told you that.
6 RADIO (LYRICS): Tell me, baby --
13.4
CUT TO: a CLOSE UP on Kelly’s HAND on the joystick in the drone control room.
7 SFX: Boop boop ding
8 UNKNOWN SENDER (CAP): Do you see now?
13.4
KELLY leans forward, the glow from the monitor illuminating her.
NO COPY
13.5
WIDE PANEL: an AERIAL view of Kelly’s CAR as it drives down the desert highway. The angle and
composition of the panel shouldn’t be a million miles away from the drone feed shots we’ve seen.
9 GREENPRED (CAP): Do you have eyes on the objective?
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PAGE FOURTEEN (6 PANELS)
Note: A vertical panel runs down the entire left side of the page. The panel consists of texts back and forth
between Kelly and her ex, John (AKA Asshole).
14.1
VERTICAL PANEL: A shot of the Messages transcript between Kelly and her ex. As indicated, this panel
runs the full height of the page on the left hand side:
ASSHOLE: Thanks for doing this, Kel. Be there shortly.
ASSHOLE: What did you tell him btw?
KELLY: Little as I could. You ran out on *both* of us.
ASSHOLE: I know. But couldn’t have been any kind of father back then.
KELLY: Never tried.
ASSHOLE: I just want to start over. Things are different now.
KELLY: Are they?
14.2
CUT TO: KELLY standing in the middle of a beautiful looking park. She paces back and forth looking at her
CELLPHONE as other PARENTS and CHILDREN mill around her in the background. BUTCH bounds
around her, barking at the sky.
1 BRANDON (OFF): Mum!
14.3
WIDE PANEL: BRANDON stands atop a climbing frame/activity centre
(http://www.madfun-climbing-frames.co.uk/images/mega-climbing-frame-s.jpg), calling out, and waving to
his Mum. A few other CHILDREN play around him as PARENTS look on.
2 BRANDON: Mum! Look!
14.4
A WIDE, thin, horizontal panel - a flock of BIRDS fly in formation across the sky.
NO COPY
14.5
WIDE PANEL: tight on KELLY, her eyes wide as she looks towards us.
3 BRANDON (OFF): Are you watching, Mum?
14.6
WIDE PANEL: BRANDON continues to wave wildly at his Mum whilst standing at the top of the slide. At the
bottom stands the YOUNG BOY from the bathroom mirror and the drone feed. He’s covered in blood and
just standing there, pointing up at the sky.
4 BRANDON: Can you see?
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PAGE FIFTEEN (7 PANELS)
Note: Once again, a vertical panel containing the texts transcript runs on the page, this time on the right
side. It’s listed here as Panel 7.
15.1
KELLY begins to run towards Brandon, past a pack of worried looking PARENTS.
1 KELLY: Brandon! Don’t move!
15.2
TIGHT ON KELLY’s ARM as someone grabs it.
NO COPY
15.3
KELLY turns to see one of the worried PARENTS has grabbed her arm. She’s a plain, wholesome-looking,
blonde SOCCER MOM in her late twenties. The other concerned PARENTS look towards Kelly, silently
judging her.
2 KELLY: Please let go.
3 SOCCER MOM: You’re scaring the children.
15.4
SOCCER MOM faces us, a concerned look on a face used to fake smiles and laughter. Over her shoulder
we see blue sky and trees.
4 SOCCER MOM: Just take a moment. Calm down.
15.5
FIXED PANEL: SOCCER MOM goes out of focus. Over her shoulder a BLACK DOT descends in the sky.
Letterer’s note: SOCCER MOM should have a speech balloon here, but it should be blank.
NO COPY
15.6
On KELLY, struggling to get free, her eyes widening in horror.
5 KELLY: Please...
(CONT’D)
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PAGE FIFTEEN, CONTINUED
15.7
Another VERTICAL PANEL showing the text transcript between KELLY and her ex. Towards the end, when
the other messages begin to appear it might be worth putting a kind of glitch effect to indicate something’s
wrong:
ASSHOLE: Okay, we’re not getting anywhere. I’ll be there in 5.
KELLY: Need to leave. Maybe another time.
ASSHOLE: WHAT?!!
ASSHOLE: Stay there!
UNKNOWN SENDER: This will be over soon.
UNKNOWN SENDER: We can try again.
UNKNOWN SENDER: It’ll be different next time.
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PAGE SIXTEEN (6 PANELS)
16.1
WIDE PANEL: KELLY lashes out at the SOCCER MOM with a right hook, sending her to the floor.
1 UNKNOWN SENDER (CAP): Assailant.
2 UNKNOWN SENDER (CAP): Victim.
16.2
WIDE PANEL: In the foreground we see the SOCCER MOM as she starts to pick herself up. In the
background we see KELLY sprinting towards BRANDON and the climbing frame.
2 UNKNOWN SENDER (CAP): Mother.
3 UNKNOWN SENDER (CAP): Killer.
16.3
TIGHT on KELLY, running flat out.
4 UNKNOWN SENDER (CAP): You are so many things, Ayrie.
5 UNKNOWN SENDER (CAP): But you can be so much more.
16.4
CUT TO: a tight shot on KELLY. We’re back in the control room. She’s not wearing her flight overalls, but
the civilian clothes she was wearing in the park.
6 UNKNOWN SENDER (CAP): We just need you to do one thing for us.
7 UNKNOWN SENDER (CAP): Trust the mission.
16.5
A shot of the drone feed, no infrared. We see Kelly’s CAR speeding out of the play-park car-park.
8 SHOGUN (CAP): Ayrie, Objective Sentinel is on the move. We’re going to lose them once they
leave the compound.
16.6
CLOSE on KELLY, in the control room seat, back in her flight overalls.
9 AYRIE (CAP): Roger, Shogun. Eyes on convoy, now heading east away from the compound.
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PAGE SEVENTEEN (7 PANELS)
17.1
MATCH CUT TO: KELLY in the driver’s seat of the car, frantic, still wearing the flight overalls as the desert
scenery speeds past outside the window.
1 KELLY: Don’t be scared, Brandon, okay?
17.2
On BRANDON in the back seat, frightened and confused.
2 BRANDON: But
17.3
CUT TO: the drone control room - ON Kelly’s HAND as it presses the button atop the joystick.
3 KELLY (OFF): Boom.
17.4
CUT TO: the car, BRANDON in tears.
4 BRANDON: ...we forgot Butch.
5 KELLY (OFF): It’s okay, baby.
17.5
CUT TO: KELLY, in the drone control room -- eyes dead ahead, empty and cold.
6 KELLY: It’s just a dog.
17.6
MATCH CUT TO: KELLY, in the drivers seat, wearing civilian clothes as she looks into the rear view mirror,
seeing her son in tears. Tears are forming in her own eyes. Something has registered. Realisation. What the
hell is she doing?
NO COPY
17.7
WIDE PANEL: CUT TO: a thin horizontal panel showing the lit empty fuel light on the car’s dashboard.
7 KELLY (TAILLESS): They’re stopping.
8 KELLY (TAILLESS): Why are they stopping?
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PAGE EIGHTEEN (5 PANELS)
18.1
CUT TO: DOUGLAS in the control room.
1 DOUGLAS: When you gotta go, you --
2 CAPTION: My eyes are finally open.
18.2
On KELLY in the drone control room, flight overalls, etc. The light from the monitors has dimmed. She’s
mostly in shadow, backlit by the instruments behind her.
3 KELLY: Jesus, are they running?
4 KELLY: You can’t --
5 CAPTION: Searing white light dims in the shade of realisation.
18.3
WIDE PANEL - the drone’s camera feed is focused on the idled STATION WAGON at the side of the desert
highway. The rear door has been flung open. Running away from the vehicle is KELLY, clutching
BRANDON in her arms.
6 KELLY (OFF): Shit.
7 KELLY (OFF): Where the hell did they come from?
8 CAPTION: The staccato beats of static-based orders wilt under the sun of a new dawn.
18.4
CUT TO: in the desert with KELLY as she runs with BRANDON in her arms. Perhaps we can see the
STATION WAGON behind them.
9 CAPTION: Time to stop running.
18.5
TIGHT ON BRANDON as he peers over his mother’s shoulder and points up at the sky.
10 AYRIE (CAP): GreenPred, we have a raven and crow with the objective.
11 CAPTION: Time to face up to it all.
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PAGE NINETEEN (7 PANELS)
19.1
On KELLY, BRANDON in her arms, as she turns to face whatever’s chasing her, a shadow falling across
her face.
1 CAPTION: You’re being bolder than usual. Now I see you.
2 CAPTION: You’re something I can fight.
3 AYRIE (CAP): GreenPred, are you seeing this?
19.2
CUT TO: KELLY, in the drone control room, confused, one of her hands gripping her headset, trying to
adjust it.
4 RADIO (LYRICS): I know you’re hurting.
5 KELLY: -- the hell is going on?
6 KELLY: Can you hear that?
7 CAPTION: Keep coming. I’m done running.
19.3
WIDE PANEL: CUT TO: a POV SHOT of whatever’s approaching KELLY. She’s still holding BRANDON,
looking up at what’s approaching. Collected and calm.
8 CAPTION: Wounds scar. Heal. Become a part of you.
9 RADIO (LYRICS): But I just need you to --
19.5
WIDE PANEL: TIGHT on KELLY and BRANDON. KELLY is absolutely fearless here. The look of a lioness
protecting her cub. Hell itself couldn’t shake this woman’s focus right now.
10 RADIO (LYRICS): -- stop.
11 CAPTION: Fuck the mission.
12 BRANDON: Mom, look.
19.6
WIDE PANEL: Nothing but black.
13 BRANDON (TAILLESS): A bird.
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PAGE TWENTY (7 PANELS)
20.1
Day. BLACK SMOKE coils up into the cloudless, pale blue sky once more.
1 CAPTION: I haven’t been here before.
20.2
PAN UP - the smoke clearing. Nothing but sky.
2 CAPTION: A heated argument, a count to ten.
20.3
FIXED: We stay on the beautiful, empty, pale blue sky.
3 CAPTION: Misery on a 24 hour loop, change the channel.
4 CAPTION: Never apart. Breadcrumbs back to you.
20.4
WIDE PANEL: INTERIOR. MORNING. CUT TO a small, cluttered bathroom. Tight on KELLY’s reflection in
the mirror above the sink, as she looks at herself. She’s wearing a tank top and jogging bottoms, her hair
up.
She grips the edges of the sink with both hands. Her eyes are puffy and red. Not from tiredness. But from
crying. There are no ghosts here, just catharsis and the start of something new.
5 CAPTION: Back to the one right thing in a world gone mad.
6 CAPTION: Back to the compass that will guide me home.
20.5
WIDE, FIXED PANEL: Behind KELLY, near the bathroom door, stands BRANDON, he’s wearing his
pyjamas, hear messy, rubbing his eyes. Adorable personified.
7 BRANDON: Mom?
8 CAPTION: You are my salvation. I’m walking towards you.
20.6
INSET PANEL inside 20.5: TIGHT on KELLY, smiling.
NO COPY
20.7
WIDE, FIXED PANEL: We stay on the mirror, watching as KELLY walks towards her son, arms wide, ready
to lift him up and carry him into a brave new world.
9 CAPTION: One step at a time.