Category Archives: Negotiated project: Planning

Negotiated project: Planning

My original idea was to create a short film idea, where a friendship – which later turns into a suggest romance – takes place between a male zombie and a human woman. (See my script below)
Treatment for idea one:
A young woman named Laura is busy finishing off uni work during a freak storm. Just as she’s finishing off her broth rings her, giving her a cryptic warning not to come home. But the power goes off before Laura can ask anything else. When power returns Laura comes face to face with a zombie named Jack. She soon learns that he means no harm. The two end up playing Go fish, and reach a mutual understanding. When the storm finally stops, Jack departs after giving Laura the information on his grave. Marcus rings Laura again, and is suprised to hear that she’s ok. The film leaves on an open ending where we think Laura will visit Jack.

FIRST IDEA
Black screen with words written in white.

‘I prefer you, just as you are, to those who, under a human form, hide a treacherous, corrupt and ungrateful heart’
– Beauty and the Beast

Words fades to black. There is a black screen when suddenly we hear the patter of rain, a rumble of thunder, the taping of computer keys, and ‘Natalia Kills – Zombie’ playing at a low level.

FADES IN

Long shot of Laura, with her back to the camera, typing away on her laptop – camera moves to the open door.

CUT TO

Laura’s phone as it starts to ring. Music stops. Laura answers it.

LAURA
Marcus?

MARCUS
Laura! Don’t go outside! IT’S NOT SAFE! Make sure-

LAURA
Whoa – Marcus slow down, what-

The lights switch off. Suddenly Laura’s face can be seen as the screen lights up. She frowns.

LAURA
No signal?

Laura moves the phone away from her, then up and then she turns around.

LAURA
Why is there no signal?!

The lights suddenly flick back on, and a zombie named JACK, wearing a dirty and wet suit that looks old fashioned, he looks like a fresh corpse – but you can tell he’s a zombie, stands before her. Laura freezes. Then Laura screams, and jumps out of her seat – she falls backwards.

CUT TO:

Laura landing on her side. She quickly scrambles back up.

CUT TO:

An over the shoulder shot of Laura as she backs away from Jack who raises his arms – he looks worried.

CUT TO:

Laura grabs her media book, and lobs it at Jack.

CUT TO:

Jack, who just manages to duck. He looks behind him.

JACK
Ughhh-

Suddenly a pencil case hits him on the back of the head. Jack whips back to face Laura.

JACK
(anger first, then fear holding his hands in surrender)
HEY! – Mam, put that chair down… please.

CUT TO:

Laura holding the chair.

LAURA
(she lifts it higher and steps forward)
St- stay back! I’m warning you.

CUT TO:

Jack standing across from Laura. He backs up feeling behind him. His hand grasps a chair. Jack gives Laura a small smile, who is still holding the chair.

JACK
(stand behind the chair)
Ok, Ok. Let’s just take a breather here – no need to be unlady like.

Laura says nothing, but begins to lower her seat. Jack slowly sits in the chair, at the same time, when he does finally sit – a look of relaxation.

CUT TO:

A side shot of Jack. Laura lowers the chair completely, but keeps her distance. For a few moments there is an awkward silence, Jack taps his hands on his knees.

JACK
Well this is nice – Course, I’d prefer to listen to a bit of jazz, me.

CUT TO:

Close up of Jack leaning back in the chair.

JACK
Good for the soul – relaxing I mean. A chance to unwind – and just let go.

CUT TO:

¾ shot of Laura leaning on the table, Jack sits in front of her. We can hear a thud. They both look down, and Laura yelps jumping onto the table. Jack gets up from the chair rubbing his neck.

JACK
(points to his hand)
Um, don’t worry I’ll get that.
(leans down to get the hand, then looks up slightly)
HEY! Get back here!

CUT TO

Straight ahead shot of Jack runs by Laura. Then he runs back the other way. As he enters back into the screen he looks ticked. Laura smirks slightly.

LAURA
Need a HAND?

Jack looks at her.

JACK
Ha, Ha, very funny…
(points to the hand off screen)
but seriously-

Laura looks from him to the hand. Hops down her head follows it’s movements. Suddenly she stamps her foot down. She bends down.

CUT TO

Close up of Laura getting up she holds the hand out, off screen, looking grossed out.

LAURA
Here.

CUT TO

Jack taking the hand off screen.

JACK
You know you didn’t need to stamp on it.
(puts hand back off screen)
But thanks.

CUT TO

Straight ahead shot as Jack rubs his wrist. Laura is rubbing her hand on her jeans. A rumble of thunder can be heard. They both look up.

JACK
(reaching into his pocket)
Well, looks like we’re not going any where for a while.
(pulls out a pack of cards)
Poker? Or Go Fish?

LAURA
(Backing up)
Whoa, slow down there Casanova. I helped you get your hand back – but for the duration of this storm we are going to be standing approximately –
(moves a good distance away from him)
THIS far apart – and if I see you move one inch towards me – I’m smashing your brains in… if you’ve still got any – and you are sure as hell not having mine! So don’t-
(notices Jack grinning and then he looks down at his cards as he’s shuffling them. Laura folds her arms.)
What’s so funny?

JACK
(looks at her slightly)
You – not you personally, but you squealers in general. Your reactions are getting old, but still hilarious.

LAURA
(looking seriously pissed)
Well, how else do you expect me to react?! You want to eat me – you want kill me, for my flesh.
JACK
(sitting down in the chair, shuffling the cards still not looking at her – calm)
And how do you get your burgers again?

LAURA
(looks embarrassed, but then angered)
Well, you’re a mindless killing machines!

JACK
(still shuffling the cards – still calm)
And many squealers have been known to kill each other, for no other reason than the self-satisfaction of taking a life.

LAURA
(still looking miffed)
Well, your kind are sneaky – you pretend to be slow, when really you’re actually fast!

CUT TO

Close up of Jack still shuffling the cards.

JACK
(still calm)
And what’s your excuse when at work?

CUT TO

Laura still looking angered, but now looks a little embarrassed – since Jack makes sense that Humans are not much different to zombies.

CUT TO

Jack leaning back in the chair. He looks at Laura as if he’s done this before.

JACK
Look, miss…

LAURA
Laura.

JACK
Laura. The storm’s not goanna let up any time soon.
(a clap of thunder can be heard to emphasises his point)
And though I could play Solitaire, and you could do your research, I think we both know that it’ll be more fun, if we play a card game together.
(notices that Laura still looks uncomfortable)
Look. Play a couple of games, and if you still feel uncomfortable. Then on my word – as a gentleman, I’ll leave you be. Deal?

Laura looks as if she’s debating with herself. Then slowly she pulls the chair to sit across from Jack. With a smile Jack deals the cards.

CUT TO

Close up of side shot of Jack’s face.

JACK
Does ‘Go fish’ sound, ok?

CUT TO

Close up of side shot of Laura’s face.

LAURA
(shrugs)
Why not… so if you’re not here to eat our flesh, and take over the earth – causing a worldwide apocalypse… then why are you out and about?

CUT TO

Over the shoulder shot from Laura’s side of Jack’s face.

JACK
Would you stay in your house if it was flooding?

CUT TO

Side shot of Laura and Jack sitting at the table. Laura has a look of realization on her face. Laura gives a silent ‘oh’ making Jack smile as he picks up his cards. Laura does so as well.

JACK
Do you have any threes?

LAURA
Go fish
The screen FADES to black.

FADE IN

INT. CLASSROOM LATER AFTERNOON

To Jack scooping the cards back up – ready to deal again. Laura looks more relaxed, and is actually smiling slightly.

JACK
Another round?

LAURA
You’re on… you know you’re not that bad company for a zombie.

JACK
Same to you, squealer. You’re certainly a lot more lively than the others… they’re a right load of dead beats. Heh, get it?

LAURA
(shakes her head, then looks up)
Can you hear that?

JACK
All right, all right, I know my jokes are bad – but no need to tell me you can hear crickets-

LAURA
No, Jack, there’s nothing to hear. Listen,

Jack looks up and together they listen. Upon hearing nothing, Jack pockets his cards. He stands up.

JACK
Well I guess I better take my leave.

Laura looks at him then gets up. Camera zooms in as Laura steps closer to Jack.

LAURA
You don’t have to go yet do you?

CUT TO

Over the shoulder from Laura.

JACK
I better. I have to make sure the others… if some are still walking… get back into their graves. Humans can get a bit edgy if we hang around.
CUT TO

Over the shoulder shot from Jack as Laura who looks dis- heartened.

LAURA
I suppose.

CUT TO

Over the shoulder from Laura. Jack looks at Laura for a bit, and then gets out a pad and pen. He scribbles something. As Jack pulls the paper off, Laura looks at him. Jack hands the piece of paper to Laura. Who looks at Jack then at the paper.

CUT TO

A shot of the paper in her hand saying ‘Jack Herbert, 9th October 1945 – 29th April 1966’.

CUT TO

Over the shoulder shot from Laura. Laura looks at the paper. Jack hops from foot to foot as if embarrassed.

JACK
So… I’ll see you around?
CUT TO

Over the shoulder shot from Jack. She’s still looking at the paper.

LAURA
I don’t know.
(looks up at Jack straight faced)
I hear that graveyards only serve spirits.

CUT TO

Jack and Laura. Jack cringes slightly with a smile. Laura is smiling.

JACK
And I thought my puns were bad.

Laura still has a smile. Jack returns the smile, before holding out his hand. Laura shakes it with out hesitation. Jack walks off.

CUT TO

Jack walking to the door, then he stops to look back. Jack, still smiling, nods to Laura.
JACK
See ya around, squealer.

CUT TO

Laura still smiling.

LAURA
See ya around, dead beat.

CUT TO

Jack, smiling, then turning walk out of sight.

CUT TO

Laura looking at the door, then at the paper. Suddenly her phone goes off. She takes it out of her pocket.

LAURA
Marcus?

MARCUS
Laura?! Thank god, you’re ok! You’re not goanna believe what’s been going on – Laura, you’re not hurt are you?

LAURA
No, why do you ask?

MARCUS
… What… have you been doing?

LAURA
Nothing much, just relearning a valuable lesson.

MARCUS
Ok… what lesson?

LAURA
(looking down at the paper, not really paying attention)
Not to judge a person based on their looks.

MARUCS
How- What – Never mind, just stay there help is on the way- will you be ok?

LAURA
I’ll be fine.

MARCUS
If you’re sure – hang tight.

Laura ends the call, and looks at the paper once again. The camera zooms in on her face

LAURA
(smiling)
I’ll be just fine.

CUTS TO BLACK.

However due to the length of the script, and the time I have to complete this idea – I cut down on my idea into a book trailer.
(See second script)
Treatment for second idea:
Laura has gone to the graveyard in secret, after knowing that she is not being followed Laura heads to the house. Once she reaches the gate, she takes the key out, and enters the house. She reaches the study where her boyfriend – Jack, a zombie – is waiting for her. She goes to hand him the meat, but instead he pulls her into a hug.

SECOND IDEA
EXT. GRAVEYARD – DAY

Young woman named Laura enters the shot. While looking over her shoulder, She touches the gate, and places the keys, to unlock it.

CUT TO

Her unlocking the gate.

CUT TO

Laura opens the gate and slips through.

FADE TO BLACK

TITLE
A world wide secret…

FADE IN

Laura walking towards a house that sits in the cemetery.

FADE OUT TO BLACK

FADE IN

INT. HOUSE CORRIDOR – DAY

Laura walks down a corridor.

CUT TO

The bag in her hand with some meat in.

CUT TO

Side shot of Laura as she reaches a door. She stands outside of it looking at it. Hesitant. Then grasping the door handle she opens it.

FADE TO BLACK

TITLE
A complicated love…

FADE IN

Close up a young man, named Jack’s, eyes as he looks out the window.

CUT TO

Laura standing behind Jack. The young man turns around, we can see he’s a zombie, the camera can see him smile slightly.

CUT TO

Laura walks up to Jack and he walks to her. They meet in the middle looking hesitant. Laura holds out the bag. Jack takes the bag, and then holds Laura in a gentle hug.

FADE TO BLACK

TITLE
A test of patience…

FADE TO BLACK

FADE IN

Book front cover saying HONEST HEARTS.

Since I’ll be following the second script idea I have drawn up a story board:

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