I wrote this script as part of a TV module in Uni. Myself and the other members of the production team didn’t want to create a cop drama as our tutor suggested. Instead we decided to create a scifi Television pilot. Complete opposite ! And we where pretty happy with the result =) If you like the show “Falling Skies” you might like this to, as its a similar concept. The formatting isn’t great because I had to paste it from a script program, so everything had to be re organised.
I hope you can spare some time and give it a read.
Blinding Lights.Draft3.Pilot.Episode1. Series1
In the darkness there is the sound of crackling from a fire. Two men are crouched close by the flames for warmth. The soft splashing of water can be heard as it hits a young man’s face. The young man turns his soaked face towards his companion’ to listen to their conversation. The older of the two men is sitting up straight and alert. The other man, younger and more relaxed pokes the fire with a stick while pulling apart a piece of bread with his teeth.
Tim (telling a dramatic story)
He dived under a car. He watched them from come from everywhere. Pale, wrinkly things and their eyes as black as night. When the light was gone, they were gone…
The older of the two men speaks without looking at the other man. He takes a moment before speaking, looking out towards the trees.
He seen all of that from under a car did he?
Yeah, and this other guy who said they look like us but their all bald.
Benjamin continues to look into the distance.
Its more likely he hide under that car, pissed himself and hoped they wouldn’t smell him.
Alex you seen them before, tell our pale here what they look like.
Alex settles himself on the other side of the fire but makes sure not to block Ben’s view of the surroundings behind him.
Oh yeah, I’d even say they were translucent. Some say you can even see their hearts beating in their chests.
Tim crunches up his face with annoyance and throws the small piece of bread into the fire. Ben continues to look out ahead but with a small smile showing on his lips.
TIM [angrily but not shouting]
Well I believe what people are saying!
Alex is warming his hands by the fire.
It’s all just talk. Ghost stories people tell each other.But all the same, if I see pale men running about I will make sure to tell them to consider getting a tan so people like you Tim, won’t shoot them on the spot.
Tim is about to voice his argument when Ben interjects.
That’s enough… your both talking too much. So close your mouths… eat your food… and Tim… your taking first watch. Please try to do your duty and keep us alive.
Tim gets to his feet without uttering a word in defiance and moves off into the darkness to find a spot to settle in.
The sound of a woman screaming can be heard. A blinding light is distorting all vision. Someone is calling Alex’s name.
3. EXT.TENT.EARLY MORNING
Alex is lying inside a tent tossing and turning in his sleep.
The Blinding light is still covering all vision. It is impossible to distinguish between anything and anyone. A loud screeching covers the vicinity.
Alex scans around him. It is quiet. The only noise to break the silent peace is snores that can be heard coming from Tim Lying by the extinguished fire. The darkness gives way to the rising sun that is coming over the horizon. Alex finds Ben hidden up one of the larger ones.
I see you still prefer to hide up in trees.
Ben looks down at Alex.Ben smiles down at Alex briefly and hops down from the tree.
Better for seeing whats coming.
They walk back towards the camp. They walk in silence for a little while until Ben starts talking in a hushed voice.
We need to get moving with the supplies. Its not safe here anymore. I seen a small group by the river. Get Tim to help you take down the tents.
The light from the sun shines in between the gapes in the trees. The crunching of the leaves and heavy breathing echoes in the air. There are no birds chirping, no animals scurrying along the ground. A man is hiding himself behind a tree. Across from him a woman hides behind another. She looks scared. The man puts a finger to his lips to indicate to her to stay quiet. A loud screeching covers the forest. The woman winces with pain and so does the man. After a few moments the sound begins to dwindle. The woman goes to move but the man shakes his head. She stops and tenses her body. After a few minutes the man looks around the tree he is hiding behind for any sign of anything. He moves over to the woman still hiding tensely behind a tree. There is blood trickling from the woman’s ear. The Man draws up his sleeve in his hand and wipes the woman’s ears.
The man touches his own ear. She was right, he is bleeding form the ears too.
We should keep going.
Laura looks at Rick exhausted.
We have been walking hour hours can we not just rest for a while?
No, We should keep going. Its not safe stopping
Not safe? No where is safe !
Rick looks around him then turns sharply towards Laura.
Are you mad? Shouting like that… They have just gone. Do you want them back here again already?
Laura looks unabashed at Rick who looks at her incredibly.
LAURA [angry whisper]
Of course not, but how do you expect us to find him or anyone for that matter in the middle of nowhere. And we are starving. If we don’t find food soon it wont matter how safe we are.
Rick looks away as if trying to find his answer. He looks back at Laura defeated.
Your right… We can try finding some food closer to the city… but we’re not going to close. I’m not risking us been taken again.
Laura moves closer to Rick.
But they let us go… their not going to come after us again.
Rick moves away from Laura but stops and moves back towards her.
Do you really want to chance that?
But he could be in the city, if we could only…
Rick walks back and forth.
Why not take us again and this time, send us back dead. How will we find him then?
Alex and Ben are walking cautiously along a road. Tim is walking behind them more relaxed. The road is thin and has become overgrown. Grass and weeds jut out from cracks in the concrete. All three are wearing big heavy rucksacks.
We would be back at the camp by now if you didn’t keep taking us off route.
Alex continues to walk at Ben’s side and does not look back at Tim when he replies.
Yeah and we also could be spotted, safer this way.
Ben stops them abruptly and directs wordlessly for them to take cover. Alex moves off to the right to hide amongst the grass. Tim does the same but goes to the left. Ben crouches down where he is. All three go quiet. There are figures moving up ahead. Ben moves off to the side and towards where Alex is hidden.
They must have turned back.
Alex keeps his eyes in the direction of the stranger’s and whispers to Ben.
Ben looks towards the strangers.
three, one is a little future back.
Alex continues to keep his eyes on the strangers.
What should we do?
Stay hidden until they pass by.
The strangers are getting closer.
But they might need our help?
We cant bring them with us.
The strangers have nearly passed were Ben, Tim and Alex were moments ago. Alex looks at Ben in frustration.
They could help us.
look at them, they’re half dead. They probably even have the disease.
So what? we leave them to fend for themselves because they may have the disease?
Not everyone returned with the disease, they could be fine.
I’m not taking that chance.We don’t even have any weapons.
Medicine isn’t a priority missing which means, no weapons.
The could tell us so much. us where they were, who took them. They could even know others that were taken!
Ben faces Alex. He looks angry but keeps his voice low and cam.
Its to risky. Let it go Alex.
Alex looks longingly back over to where the strangers are. They have passed them now and are walking slowly away.
9. EXT.OUTSIDE AN OLD BUILDING.NIGHT.
It is night and a fire light flickers inside an old building.Laura is a little back behind Rick. Nature is slowly retaking it wrapping its weeds around the open windows and scrawling up its sides. Frank nears the building and as he does so he calls out softly but clearly.
Is anyone inside? My name is Rick and this is Laura.
There is no answer from within the building. Rick looks behind him to where Laura is standing. Laura encourages him to call again.
We are just looking for somewhere to rest.
Before he makes a move towards the building a mans voice speaks from behind both him and Laura. Rick turns to look for the source of the voice. What he finds is an old man slightly bent over holding a very large knife.
Can’t be too careful. There’s a lot of liars in this new world of ours. Lets have a look at your arms.
Rick looks at Laura. Laura is closer to the old man looks at the man inquisitively.
We have marks.
The old man tightens his grip on the knife. Rick notices.
Then you best walk away.
Rick moves closer. The old man notices this and points the knife at him suggestively. Laura moves in front to block Rick.
Wait! , just hold on for a minute. It’s just a mark.
The old man speaks to Laura but kept his eyes on both of them.
Just a mark ay?
Laura looks directly at the old man.
The old man surveys Laura.
And neither of you have been sick? No fever, no coughing blood?
Laura replies to quickly at first but relaxes herself as she continues giving her reply to the question. The Old man’s eyes are on Laura.
No, neither of us. We are just tired and hungry. You’re the first person we have come across.
The old man relaxes himself ever so slightly.
All I have is rat.
Laura looks back at Rick, he didn’t look like he had any answer so she turns her attention back to the old man.
We won’t eat your food,just… please don’t tell us to leave.
The old man stays quiet for a few moments. Then he speaks to both of them.
You can stay.
The old man puts the knife into his jacket and hunches towards the building.
I only have rat left. It should last until the scouts pass and lucky for you that shouldn’t be for another few days. You two should be gone before then.
10. INT.OLD BUILDING.NIGHT
The old man sits down stiffly beside the fire.
They won’t think twice about killing you dead.
Both Laura and Rick walked around the fire and set themselves across from the old man. Rick takes in the surroundings while Laura introduces them to their new companion.
My name is Laura and this is my Fiance Rick.
The old man answers Laura but keeps his attention on his hands that are now warming themselves close to the fire.
The Old man
He said. I’m Rick
Laura looks at the old man confused.
Old man takes his hands away from the fire and looks towards Laura across the fire.
Yes Rick, Rick, ruler, leader, king. Richard. Yes, Richard.
Are you out here alone?
The old man has returned to warming his hands by the fire. Rick is still looking at the old man.
Yes.safer. Only seen when I want to be. They…
Laura looks up from the fire at his words. The old man pauses on his last words.
Right.. Have they been any 16 year old’s? I’m looking for my brother, he would have been 16….
The old man takes something from the ground beside him. It is a piece of some sort of small rodent that has been skinned. He attaches the meat to a stick.
Laura doesn’t quite understand her meaning fast enough and before she can answer the old man repeats her question vigorously.
Yes, what year… What year! does it help it i say it differently or slower ? what year…… What Year!
Rick answers first. He replies softly. The old man reverts his attention back to the meat. He hangs the meat on the stick over the fire.
Old man is watching the meat start to cook over the fire.
The old man looks away from the meat and turns his head sharply to look at Laura
4 years. 16, now 20 and a man grown.
The old man turns the meat on the stick that is over the fire. Laura sits in silence watching him dumbstruck. Rick looks at nothing in particular and mulls over the words that have just come from the old man. He speaks while still not focusing on anything.
If he is still alive?
The old man continues to turn the meat on the fire while she answered.
Hiding somewhere or resisting. Either way you won’t find him.
Rick looks up at the old man’s last words. Laura is still sits in silence.
The old man looks up from the fire and looks at Rick. As he finishes he is brandishing meat at both of them.
If he with resistance they will kill you before you get near their camp. If he is hiding and hasn’t been taken then it means he is good at it. How do you find a shadow? … Now! It taste like rat but close your eyes and think of chickens.
The old man takes a piece of the cooked meat for himself and begins ripping the meat from the bones. Laura watches him for a while until Rick nudges her and passes her some meat. She bites into the meat. By morning they will have left this Batty old man to continue their search for their for her brother.
The light is so bright you would assume the sun was up but the light was not coming from the sun but out of the darkness. The light is blinding and is distorting all vision. Ben is shouting at Alex and Tim. Tim drops his heavy rucksack and sprints away from the scene not even glancing back once. Ben shouts after him, his last words a meager whisper from a distance.
Tim!! TIM! You coward….
Ben grabs Alex by the arm roughly. Ben shouts an order at Alex through the blinding light.
Get the Bag!
Alex tries to argue and turns to look in every direction hopefully.
We can kill them!
With what exactly ! Get the Bag!
Alex runs over to where the bag Tim dropped is lying. He picks up the abandoned bag with one hand and throws his gun over his shoulder. Ben runs over to Alex. A screeching noise begins to cover the surrounding area.
We have to move! Their coming!
Alex runs for cover with Ben on his heels. They run in the direction of trees. The cover from the trees diminishes the screeching. Alex almost trips but Ben catches him and they both keep running.
12. EXT.OFF ROAD.DAY
It is late in the day. The sun is at its highest. Ben is carrying his own rucksack on his back and Tim’s discarded rucksack. Alex is walking behind him.
Gollum hides around here.
Ben scans out in front.
That’s not his name.
I thought you said he doesn’t have a name?
Well then I think Gollum works.
Ben ignores Alex’s last comment and walks on.
There’s an old house up ahead, We will have to wait. He wont be back until dark.
Alex looks ahead to try and spot the old house.
Can we not just keep on going back to camp?
If we don’t stop off he will leave here without a trace.
Doesn’t sound to bad.
An old building is slightly obscured by trees up ahead. There is no sign of any inhabitants.
You wont say that when your starving and have no were to shelter. He helps us, we help him.
Ben had been smiling but it was wiped cleaning very quickly. Ben stops abruptly. Alex stops dead behind him
There’s something lying in the grass over there.
Ben lowers the bags to the ground. He moves slowly to the left circling whatever is lying in the grass. Alex moves circling the object from the right. They both reach the object at the same time.
It must have happened recently.
Ben looks down at the body solemnly. Alex looks the body over, taking in every detail.
Why kill him?
Ben crouches down over the body. Tim was pale with blood shot eyes. His face is ridged giving him the appearance of someone who was scared to death. Ben pulls up Tim’s sleeve. There is a bandage underneath covering his arm. Ben removes the bandage. A distinctive mark is etched on the inside of Tim’s arm. Alex sees the mark.
It looks old.
Alex looks at Ben solemnly. Ben continues to look at Tim.
He ran because he was afraid of been taken.
Ben looks back at Alex. All pity on face vanished.
Then he shouldn’t have joined the resistance. We didn’t run.
If we had guns…
you would have done what exactly? tried to kill them? you against them all ?
Better then running..
Better to be alive.
Ben pulls Tim’s sleeve back over his arm and closes his eyes with his fingers.Ben ignores Alex’s last comment completely.
We can’t start a fire. Not so close to the building. We will have to wait until we’re leaving.
Ben walks back over to where he left the bags on the ground, picks them both back up. They both walk cautiously inside the building.
13. INT.OLD BUILDING.NIGHT.
The night is quiet except for the scratching of flint. Ben is standing by the entrance keeping watch while Alex is bent down on his knees trying to relight the embers of a fire long extinguished. Ben’s eyes narrow. His then face relaxes.
A cat in the night.
A figure walks closer. The figure is hunched slightly but tall. The person is carrying a brown bag which is dripping from the ends. The brown bag is dripping blood.
is cleverer then a mouse and sees a lot better than any man.
except for you. What in the bag? rats?
The old man lifts the bag up higher at his side and calls back.
The old man walks by Ben into the building. He throws the brown bag roughly to the side. The Old Man walks straight over to Alex and makes Alex move aside.
CAT, Move, please now.
The old man takes the flint from Alex’s hands and picks up some dried moss growing near the fire. He lights the fire with a few strokes of the flint.
see, done. and all before I die of frost bite.
Alex watches the fire begin to grow with his embarrassment growing with it.
The old man looks at Ben slightly disappointed.
What have you brought me today.
Ben walks over to one of the rucksacks.He takes out what looks like jars of different spices. The old man walks swiftly over to him, snatches the contents out of his hand and investigates them.
Ah Benjamin… wait I think that’s my name. ah yes Benjamin, Hebrew for son of my right hand.
Ben’s smile fades again. He looks at Cat tasting the contents of one of the jars.
Hello again Benjamin.
The old man looks up from the jar.
Old MAN BENJAMIN
The dead boy, is he your or theirs?
Alex looks up from the fire and looks over at the old man.
His name was Tim.
Old Benjamin turns from facing Ben to look over at Alex with the jars or spices still in his hand.
dead Tim, Tim with the funny smell, it makes not matter. I suggest fire. When people are hungry enough they will eat anything even dead Tim. I’ll do it after you leave.
The old man returns to investigating his new items.
Thank you, now are you going to put them to work or not? It has been a while since I’ve had your famous spiced rat.
The old man looks back at Ben.
OLD MAN BENJAMIN
I found a fox. It was trying to dig out a rabbit, so I killed the fox, dug out the rabbit and bashed it over the head with the fox. Which would you like?
Ben doesn’t get the chance to answer. Old Benjamin moves abruptly over to the other rucksacks that Ben and Alex brought and starts to root through one.
Has anyone come through this part?
OLD MAN BENJAMIN
What? People… no, just Benjamin here.
The old man continues to look through the rucksack. Alex looks over at him as he does so.
We passed a group that may have come from this way. You didn’t see them?
The old man looks back at Alex with a confused expression on his face.
OLD MAN BENJAMIN
Branded is likely.
So you think they were Branded?
OLD MAN BENJAMIN
I thought you resistance don’t like the Branded? Why so curious?
Alex looks at him a little more tensely.
They might have information on where they were taken. They could even know other groups like theirs.
The old man looks at him curiously for a few moments then continues to root through one of the rucksacks when he answers. Alex shifts uncomfortably.
OLD MAN BENJAMIN
Not for over a week…
Old Benjamin gets up awkwardly and walks right up to Alex and moves his face over Alex’s taking in every crease.
OLD MAN BENJAMIN
How old are you?
Alex tries to back away unnoticed but the old man moves with Alex in unison.
Eh 20 …
The old man looks back at him curiously. The abruptly speaks.
OLD MAN BENJAMIN
16 becomes 20….
The old man walks away from Alex leaving him looking bewildered. After watching old Benjamin walk towards the blood stained brown bag he had previous thrown on the ground, Alex moves closer to the fire and settles down. The light from the fire catches the features of Alex’s face when he moves closer to it. He looks very like his sister.