SCRIPT!! 4 days left!
Here are the first few pages of the script from "The Tale Heart"'s opening scene as it was originally intended. With filming and great actors so much changes from script to screen. This is was a great film to make. I certainly enjoyed adapting it from Poe as "The Tell Tale Heart" is my favorite short story of his works.
Debbie Rochon as the Narrator
Desiree Gould as Nurse Malliard
Lesleh Donaldson as Evelyn Dick
David Marancik as Fritz
"THE TELL-TALE HEART"
FADE IN: INT. DARK ROOM
The SOFT SOUND of a heart beating begins over the SNDTRACK.
It is very calm and soothing.
NARRATOR (V.O) True! ... nervous..very, very, dreadfully nervous I had been and am; but why will you say that I am mad?
An intense slice of rectangular light illuminates on the NARRATOR’S eyes. Her eyes are wet, dark with mascara smearing her sockets.
NARRATOR (V.O) The disease… it sharpened my senses…not destroyed… not dulled them. Above all was the sense of hearing acute. Narrator looks down. A roach crawls across the dark room. We hear every sound of its feet hitting the floor.
NARRATOR (V.O) I heard all things in heaven and in all the earth. I heard many things in hell.
The VOICES of madness slowly begin to fade up on the SOUNDTRACK permeating the darkness: The sounds of people screaming crying, laughter, moaning and pain.
NARRATOR (V.O) How then am I mad?
A door opens letting in a burst of intense white light. The Narrator protects herself from the light. A large shadow of person hovers over the Narrator inching itself closer to her.
NARRATOR (V.O) Listen! Observe how healthily… how calmly I can tell you the whole story. CLOSE UP on Narrator’s face looking up to the person that inch closer to her. Heart beating calmly.
CUT TO: INT. PSYCHIATRIC WARD HALLWAY – DAY
The place is zoo of patients. Welcome to the ward! Narrator comatose and disheveled sits in her wheelchair as she is wheeled down the hallway. Nurse Maillard, a woman who loves her job and loves her patients, maybe a bit too much, rolls Narrator in the wheel chair. As Nurse Maillard passes patients she greets by them name.
NURSE MAILLARD Hello, Mr. Bertram? How are you feeling today?
Mr. Bertram sits on the floor turning from her.
NURSE MAILLARD His son tried to kill him, terrible. Well, don’t you worry you will see how pleasant it is here at The Bernice Estates
INT. PSYCHIATRIC WARD RECREATION ROOM – DAY
Nurse Maillard wheels the narrator into the ward’s cafeteria where patients are sitting, roaming, talking themselves. Guards are at stations observing. Nurse Maillard wheels Narrator over to FRITZ, young man in a straight jacket. He is smiling and rolling his eyes back, drool seeps out of his mouth.
NURSE MAILLARD Well, here we are sweetie. I am putting you right next to my best boy, Fritz. Fritzie, oh, look at you.
She cleans up his drool, but as she does so her touches are a bit much. Fritz just smiles and rocks himself.
NURSE MAILLARD Fritz, I want you to say hello to our new club member. Right behind Nurse Maillard is EVELYN DICK resident mad woman, schizophrenic, not pleasant, who holds her stuffed toy, bunny Annabel Lee for security. She thinks she runs the ward. Evelyn stares at the Narrator curiously then points even before speaking.
EVELYN Nurse Maillard, who is she to be here?
NURSE MAILLARD (not amused with Evelyn) Hello, sweetie. How are you and Annabel Lee doing today? We have a new club member here would you like to meet her. Evelyn Dick, I want you to meet our new member…
FRITZ (repeat over and over) Evil Lynn! Evil Lyn! Evil Lynn! Evil Lyn!
Evelyn sees that everyone around her is laughing and erupts like Mount Vesuvius.
EVELYN Fuck you, Fritz!
Evelyn jumps at Fritz as the guards come to control her. A guard pulls Evelyn off of Fritz.
EVELYN I’ll rip your fucking pecker off and shove it down your throat.
Fritz is hysterical laughing. Nurse Maillard approaches Evelyn in the guard’s arms. Maillard is preparing a needle in front of Evelyn with no worries or remorse.
NURSE MAILLARD Evelyn, honey, if you don’t calm yourself down and stop that un-lady like talk it’s the dark room again. Now, you don’t want to go there do you, honey?
The guard slowly places Evelyn down and slowly takes his eager fingers from off her waist. Evelyn understands completely as she holds her bunny tight and sits next to the narrator. Nurse Maillard knows she has control again with a bright smile. She exits.
NURSE MAILLARD Lunch soon, everyone.
Evelyn motions at Fritz. Fritz is in his own world. Evelyn gets close to Narrator. Evelyn wants a reaction so she cackles in narrator’s face. No reaction. TWO SHOT
Evelyn gets closer to Narrator face.
EVELYN So, why are you here? Are you as mad as I am? (pause) What’s your story? I bet your story is not as good as mine is. (pause) Tell me why you’re here or I’ll the cut your cunt out of you… Just like I did to my husband’s pretty little slutsssssssss.
Evelyn cackles as she sits back. No response from Narrator. Evelyn tries to slap Narrator, but Narrator is quick to grab Evelyn’s arm
NARRATOR Mad people know nothing! Do you fancy me mad? Evelyn’s eyes grow wide. Narrator swipes Annabel from Evelyn with quick speed. Fritz is attentive to Narrator. A roach scurries across the room. Narrator looks to roach and hears it loud and clear.
NARRATOR Listen…how calmly I can tell you the whole story. FADE OUT.