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martin993
06-24-2006, 10:31 PM
Hey, guys. Never done this before. This is the first draft for the first issue of a mini-series idea. It’s very much a work in progress. I figured I’d try to get somebody else’s opinion on it before I sit down and try another draft. Feel free to tell me if you think it’s rubbish - It’s my first effort at a comic so it’s to be expected - but if you could point out where and why then I’d be eternally grateful. Cheers!

NIGHT OF THE LONG KNIVES

PAGE 1
[1] A beautiful 1860-era Texan landscape with a striking sunset. There is black smoke on the horizon.
CAP: TEXAS, 1866

[2] We are closer to the smoke but still can’t see the source. We’re in a field of dead cattle. They are more than a little ripe.

[3] The sun sets behind the remains of an Indian settlement. The tents are all torn or burned down. Dead horses are everywhere. Blood stains the earth. One man stands alone amidst the destruction, he is the Indian WITCH. His head is bowed in solemn prayer.

PAGE 2
[1] FORT MARION, an enormous prison of stone with walls surrounding the main building and yard area. It lies in a deep valley. Guard towers are manned by soldiers. A dust trail follows a stagecoach on its way down the hill towards the prison.
CAP: “MAJOR GENERAL MORRIS WITKIN ARRIVES TODAY. YOU WILL LEAVE TOMORROW. I CANNOT GUARANTEE YOUR SAFETY IF YOU STAY.”

[2] INT. WARDEN’S RESIDENCE. WARDEN JOHN BARNARD and his wife (ALICE) sit at the table in the dining room. A beautiful Indian girl eats with them (JAHODA, 18). She is dressed in the same manner as they are. She is their adopted daughter. John gives Jahoda a stern look.
ALICE: YES, HUSBAND.
JOHN: IT IS SETTLED?

[3] Close up of JAHODA swallowing her food and speaking.
JAHODA: YES, FATHER.

[4] Everybody eats. Jahoda looks troubled.
JAHODA: I READ OF GENERAL WITKIN. OF WHAT HE DID.

[5] ALICE looks up nervously.

[6] JOHN looks up at JAHODA. ALICE wipes her mouth with a napkin.
JOHN: REGRETTABLE. MOST REGRETTABLE. WHERE DID YOU READ THIS?
JAHODA: THE PAPERS SAY HE WIPED OUT AN ENTIRE TRIBE.
JOHN: THEY EXAGERRATE. WE’LL HEAR NO MORE OF IT. AN EIGHTEEN YEAR OLD GIRL SHOULD NOT CONCERN HERSELF WITH SUCH MATTERS.

PAGE 3
[1] EXT. WITKIN’S STAGECOACH as it approaches the prison gates. They open to greet it.
CAP: “FATHER… DID HE REALLY KILL ALL OF THOSE PEOPLE?”

[2] MAJOR GENERAL MORRIS WITKIN sits inside the stagecoach with an armed guard at either side (WILLIAM DAHLGREN and LEWIS ESKEW). His hands are shackled. He appears beaten and tired.
CAP: “NOT AT ALL.”

[3] A smiling WITKIN is led out of the stagecoach and into the yard where he receives a hero’s welcome from the other prisoners (mostly POWs). They cheer and shout. The guards, DAHLGREN and ESKEW, pull him along by his arms.
CAP: “HE HAD HIS MEN DO IT.”

PAGE 4
[1] In the middle of the crowd there is one man who does not cheer. He is PRIVATE AMBROSE SAMUELS. He stares towards Witkin (off frame) with intense hatred.

[2] Closer on PVT SAMUELS. WITKIN walks quickly by, a blur in the foreground.

[3] PVT SAMUELS follows him with his eyes.

[4] OVERHEAD SHOT. Birds in the foreground on top of the roof. WITKIN is led by DAHLGREN and ESKEW past the gathered crowd towards the main building. PVT SAMUELS has seperated from the group and walks paralell with Witkin on the other side of them.

[5] PVT SAMUELS walks behind the crowd, watching and waiting for the right moment to strike.

[6] Two people talk in the crowd (INMATE 1 and INMATE 2). Inmate 1 is a skinny guy and especially dumb-looking. He elbows Inmate 2, ignoring the fact that Inmate 2 looks like he could snap him in two, and laughs hysterically.
INMATE 1: THEY OUGHTTA GIVE THIS GUY A GODDAMN MEDAL FER WHAT HE DID. GODDAMN INJUNS DESERVE EVERYTHIN’ THEY GET!

PAGE 5
[1] SAMUELS leaps out from the crowd holding a hand sharpened piece of steel. DAHLGREN is surprised, ESKEW hasn’t noticed. WITKIN stops smiling.
DAHLGREN: HEY!

[2] SAMUELS grabs WITKIN in an embrace, slamming the knife into his side. Witkin’s face is white with fear. ESKEW turns and aims his rifle at Samuels. DAHLGREN moves to pull them apart.

[3] SAMUELS whispers into WITKIN’s ear. All the blood has drained from WITKIN’s face.
SAMUELS: WOMEN AND CHILDREN, GENERAL? NOT THE WOMEN AND CHILDREN?
WITKIN: THEM, TOO.

[4] DAHLGREN slams the butt of his rifle into SAMUELS’s jaw, knocking him away. WITKIN collapses as the horrified crowd watches. ESKEW still has his rifle trained on Samuels.
ESKEW: DROP THE KNIFE! GET ON THE FLOOR!

[5] OVERHEAD SHOT of SAMUELS being subdued by the DAHLGREN and ESKEW. WITKIN lies in a pool of blood, very scared, holding his wound.

[6] CLOSE UP of WITKIN’s face. He believes he’s dying. He’s afraid. He whispers.
WITKIN: KILL THEM ALL.

[7] The birds on the roof fly away.

PAGE 6
[1] Nighttime now. BIG PANEL. The darkness of SOLITARY CONFINEMENT. PVT SAMUELS sits against the wall in a shaft of moonlight, shaky through the heavy rain outside.
SFX: KER-CHICK

[2] The door to the cell opens. WARDEN JOHN BARNARD stands in the light with the guard LEWIS ESKEW.
JOHN: THAT WAS QUITE A THING, MR SAMUELS.

[3] SAMUELS stands and squints to see, holding his hand over his eyes. The WARDEN enters the cell.
SAMUELS: THAT’S PRIVATE. PRIVATE AMBROSE SAMUELS. I SERVED UNDER GENERAL WITKIN AT-
JOHN: I’M AWARE OF YOUR RECORD. I’M AWARE OF YOUR CRIME.
(LINK): AND I’M FULLY AWARE OF YOUR INTENTIONS REGARDING THE GENERAL.

[4] SAMUELS turns his head away as he speaks, remembering something painful.
SAMUELS: YOU DON’T KNOW. YOU DON’T KNOW ANYTHING. WHAT HE DID. WHAT WE DID. IT NEVER GOES AWAY. IT’S ALL I SEE. IT’S ALL I AM NOW.

[5] ESKEW moves around the WARDEN towards SAMUELS, drawing his SWORD.
JOHN: YOU KNOW WHAT YOU ARE NOW?

[6] ESKEW smashes SAMUELS in the jaw with his sword handle, breaking his teeth.

[7] The WARDEN watches with distaste.
JOHN: YOU’RE AN EXAMPLE.
(LINK): IF ANY HARM SHOULD COME TO MORRIS WITKIN I AM PERSONALLY RESPONSIBLE. THE MAN’S A GODDAMN HERO. IF HE DIES THERE’S GONNA BE ANOTHER WAR, ONE LIKE YOU NEVER SEEN.

[8] SAMUELS looks up from a foetal position on the floor with blood pouring from his mouth.
OFF: YOU’RE LUCKY HE SURVIVED. WE AREN’T GOING TO HANG YOU.
(LINK): WE’RE JUST GOING TO CRIPPLE YOU.

PAGE 7
[1] EXT. FORT MARION. The moon is full. The rain is pouring down as a storm approaches.
FORT MARION: PLEASE! NOOOOO!!!

[2] Reverse angle of a man standing in the rain facing the prison. It’s the INDIAN WITCH. The rain beats down off his naked chest. He mutters something. His eyes are closed.
WITCH: KAL-LA RAM. SUD-DAH RAM.
(LINK): KAL-LA RAM. SUD-DAH RAM.

[3] CLOSE UP. He opens his eyes. They glow an eerie blue colour.
OFF (GLOWING): KAL-LA RAM. SUD-DAH RAM.

PAGE 8
[1] EXT. WARDEN’S RESIDENCE. NIGHT. The rain is coming even harder now. The house is seperated from the main building and has a large chainlink fence surrouding it. It is within the prison walls but not near the prison itself. There is a small window into a basement at the bottom of the house. At the side there is a trapdoor that has been left open.

[2] CLOSER on the basement window. Through it we can see a small light.

[3] JAHODA from behind as she slides her dress from off her shoulders.

[4] JAHODA picks a sword off a wall rack.

[5] JAHODA spins around in her undergown and points the sword at a man standing near the trapdoor (f/g, back to us).
JAHODA: YOU’RE LATE.

[6] JAHODA prepares herself to fence. The man is WILLIAM DAHLGREN, the guard from earlier. He draws his sword while advancing and smiles as he speaks.
DAHLGREN: SPOT OF BOTHER WITH THE GENERAL. YOUR FATHER IS HANDLING IT.

[7] JAHODA jabs her sword at DAHLGREN. He dodges the blade with a look of surprise. Jahoda smiles.
DAHLGREN: SOMEONE’S BEEN PRACTICING.

PAGE 9
[1] JAHODA leans over with one hand in the air and lifts up DAHLGREN’s shirt with the point of her sword, exposing his flesh. She smiles.
JAHODA: SOMEONE’S BEEN EATING.

[2] DAHLGREN, frowning, parries away JAHODA’s sword.

[3] JAHODA swings for DAHLGREN’s side and he blocks with his sword.

[4] JAHODA spins the other way and grabs DAHLGREN by the collar.

[5] CLOSER. JAHODA presses her lips to DAHLGREN’s.

[6] WIDE SHOT. JAHODA and DAHLGREN stand together in the dim light of the basement, their swords lowered.
DAHLGREN: IF YOUR FATHER FOUND OUT… THIS IS GOING TO END SOON, YOU KNOW THAT.
JAHODA: DON’T LET IT BE NOW.

PAGE 10
[1] JAHODA walks to the other side of the room and replaces the sword in the wall rack.
JAHODA: I LEAVE TOMORROW.
OFF: YOUR FATHER IS WORRIED. I CAN UNDERSTAND WHY.

[2] DAHLGREN sits on a crate and spins the point of his sword on the ground.
DAHLGREN: THERE IS A VERY REAL DANGER THAT WITKIN’S MEN WILL TRY TO GET HIM BACK. HE’S A LEGEND IN THE SOUTH. HE’S DONE MANY BRAVE THINGS IN HIS TIME. NOT JUST…

[3] JAHODA takes his hand. He remains seated.
DAHLGREN: HE WILL STAND TRIAL. THE NORTH WANT A PUBLIC EXECUTION, SOMEONE HIGH UP. THE SOUTH WANT THEIR WAR HERO BACK. THE INDIANS… GOD ONLY KNOWS WHAT THEY WANT. IF HE DOESN’T SEE TRIAL THEN…
JAHODA: THEN, WHAT?

[4] CLOSER. DAHLGREN looks up.
DAHLGREN: WE’RE NOT GONNA HAVE A WAR, WE’RE GONNA HAVE A MASSACRE. THIS THING WILL NEVER BE SETTLED.
(LINK): DON’T YOU WANT PEACE?

[5] CLOSE UP on JAHODA.
JAHODA: I’VE NEVER WANTED FOR ANYTHING. EVER SINCE I CAME HERE I’VE BEEN SO HAPPY. IF MOTHER – MRS BARNARD, I MEAN – HADN’T FOUND ME, I WOULD HAVE DIED.

[6] JAHODA sits on DAHLGREN’s knee.
DAHLGREN: DO YOU EVER MISS YOUR OLD FAMILY, YOUR OWN PEOPLE?
JAHODA: THERE’S NOTHING OF MY FAMILY LEFT TO MISS.
(LINK): I DON’T REMEMBER THEM VERY WELL, ANYWAY. I WAS SMALL.

[7] CLOSER. They put their faces up next to each other. DAHLGREN smiles at JAHODA and touches her face. Jahoda smiles softly.
DAHLGREN: YOU’RE STILL SMALL.



The issue continues for another ten pages to include a couple of nasty deaths and a final reveal shot of a large undead Indian force storming towards the prison. The idea is that it turns into a Civil War-era supernatural Assault On Precinct 13. Let me know what you think! Ta very much!

ComicScribe
06-25-2006, 03:09 PM
Seems like a pretty cool idea you've got going on here mate. :cool: I would really like to read the rest of it. Keep up the good work! :har:

Knuckles
06-28-2006, 01:50 PM
This is an interesting beginning. Every seems to be paced well. I would just add a few shot angles to the script. You have have some with the close-up view, but maybe stating what is a large shot. And then some other crits I have are:
[3] SAMUELS whispers into WITKIN’s ear. All the blood has drained from WITKIN’s face.
SAMUELS: WOMEN AND CHILDREN, GENERAL? NOT THE WOMEN AND CHILDREN?
WITKIN: THEM, TOO.

He asks a question here? I would think it would be more of a statement since it happened in the past.


[8] SAMUELS looks up from a foetal position on the floor with blood pouring from his mouth.
OFF: YOU’RE LUCKY HE SURVIVED. WE AREN’T GOING TO HANG YOU.
(LINK): WE’RE JUST GOING TO CRIPPLE YOU.



And I think you mean FETAL position.

Hope this helps and good luck with this.

martin993
06-28-2006, 05:54 PM
Bloody word always gives me trouble. Thanks for the advice.

martin993
07-02-2006, 03:45 AM
This is the last half of the issue (gotta hate those word counts). It's already being re-written but a healthy bit of criticism can only help. Cheers - Martin


PAGE 11

[1] DAHLGREN kisses JAHODA.
JAHODA: BEAT YOU UP, DIDN’T I?

[2] DAHLGREN slides her underdress strap down her shoulder.
DAHLGREN: I LET YOU WIN. I’M A GENTLEMAN, DON’T YOU KNOW?

[3] JAHODA puts her arms aroound him.
JAHODA: HAD ME FOOLED.

[4] DAHLGREN lies JAHODA down on the ground. The basement window in the background lights up with a bright flash from some lightning, throwing the two lovers into silhouette.

PAGE 12

[1] Fork lighting comes from the dark sky.
SFX: KRAAK

[2] INT. PRISON CORRIDOR. We look through the bars to MORRIS WITKIN’s back. He has no top on. A large bandage s wrapped around his lower torso. He stands on tip-toes at his barred window, looking around eagerly.
OFF: WITKIN? GENERAL WITKIN? SOMETHING WRONG?

[3] Inside his cell. CLOSE on WITKIN’s worried face.
WITKIN: THERE’S SOMEONE OUT THERE. I CAN HEAR THEM.

[4] A GUARD peers into Witkin’s cell through the bars.
GUARD: THERE’S A HUNDRED ARMED GUARDS IN THIS PLACE. YOU’RE SAFE, GENERAL. GET SOME SLEEP.

[5] WITKIN slides his back against the wall and sits on the floor. He looks tired.
WITKIN: THERE’S SOMETHING OUTSIDE. SOMETHINGS. MAYBE A LOT OF SOMETHINGS.
OFF: NOW, ARE YOU GOING TO GET SOME SLEEP OR AM I GOING TO HAVE TO GET THE WARDEN DOWN HERE?

[6] WITKIN jumps to his feet to shout and wave his arms around.
WITKIN: I’M A GODDAMN WAR HERO, GOD DAMN YOU! I’M MAJOR GENERAL MORRIS WITKIN! I’VE WON MORE MEDALS THAN YOU’VE HAD BASTARD CHILDREN! WHO ARE YOU? WHO ARE YOU TO TELL ME THERE’S NOTHING OUTSIDE?

[7] CLOSE UP. WITKIN sticks his face between two of the bars and shouts angrily.
WITKIN: WHO ARE YOU, SIR? WHO ARE YOU?

[8] The GUARD walks away down the long corridor. WITKIN pushes his face further against the bars.
WITKIN: THERE’S SOMETHING OUTSIDE!!!

PAGE 13

[1] The GUARD walks out into another long corridor with no cells, muttering to himself.
GUARD: I’LL GIVE HIM MAJOR GENERAL…

[2] On a corner. The GUARD comes down one corridor, DAHLGREN comes down another, buttoning up his raincoat with his rifle slung over his back. He’s smiling.

[3] DAHLGREN and the GUARD almost bump into each other.
DAHLGREN: WOW. SCARED ME HALF TO DEATH THERE. EVERYTHING OKAY?
GUARD: DAHLGREN. YOU HEADED UP TO THE WALLS? FRANKLIN’S WAITING FOR YOU.
DAHLGREN: BETTER GET A MOVE ON. GOOD EVENING.

[4] DAHLGREN walks off grinning. The GUARD turns, confused.
GUARD: WHAT ARE YOU SO DARNED HAPPY ABOUT?

[5] DAHLGREN walks through a large, two-storey section filled with overcrowded cells. The men are pathetic-looking, former soldiers worn down through hunger and countless beatings.

[6] Another shot of the CELLS and the terrible conditions as DAHLGREN walks on by.

[7] DAHLGREN jogs up a flight of stone steps. FRANKLIN stands at the top opening the door to the outside.
DAHLGREN: I CAN’T APOLOGISE ENOUGH.
FRANKLIN: YOU'RE RIGHT, DAHLGREN. YOU CAN'T. WE’RE THIRTY MINUTES DUE ALREADY. THE DAYWATCHERS ARE GONNA PUNCH YOU IN THE MOUTH.

PAGE 14

[1] EXT. PRISON WALLS. Raining cats and dogs (continues through to the end of the issue). We’re looking down the long path on the wall towards the light from the open door where FRANKLIN and DAHLGREN stand. There’s nobody else around.
DAHLGREN: WELL, WHERE ARE THEY?

[2] DAHLGREN and FRANKLIN walk out along the wall. Franklin is angry. Dahlgren is curious.
FRANKLIN: THEY’VE ABANDONED THEIR POSTS FOR THE LAST TIME! THE WARDEN WILL HEAR OF THIS!

[3] DAHLGREN finds a rifle near a lookout point. FRANKLIN becomes concerned.
DAHLGREN: FRANKLIN, WHY WOULD THEY LEAVE THEIR RIFLES?

[4] FRANKLIN stares after Dahlgren (off frame). We can see the side of the top part of the wall. A INDIAN HAND clutches to the stones.

[5] DAHLGREN points to FRANKLIN, ordering him.
DAHLGREN: FRANKLIN, RAISE THE ALARM. DO IT NOW.

PAGE 15

[1] FRANKLIN stares at Dahlgren (at us) in complete horror.

[2] Same angle. FRANKLIN’s eyes roll upwards and a deep red line is traced along his neck.

[3] Same angle. FRANKLIN’s mouth falls open as his head slides off his neck. Blood sprays from the cleanly cut neck.

[4] WIDE SHOT. FRANKLIN’s corpse doubles over. An INDIAN WARRIOR stands behind him in a defensive stance holding an axe dripping with blood. He is in the darkness but appears almost skeletal and a strange blue light eminates from his eyes. He wears a large feather head-dress. DAHLGREN, on the other side of Franklin, stands frozen, his jaw dropped in shock. His rifle is slung over his back. His sword and pistol are on his belt.

[5] DAHLGREN growls and pulls a pistol from his belt.

PAGE 16

[1] The INDIAN WARRIOR leaps over FRANKLIN’s body and slices his axe through the air. DAHLGREN fires his pistol twice, stumbling backwards.
SFX: BAMM
SFX: BAMM

[2] The INDIAN WARRIOR lands before us (Dahlgren’s POV). He’s crouched down on the floor, his long black hair over his face, about to push himself up with his large axe.

[3] SIDE VIEW. The INDIAN WARRIOR starts getting up. DAHLGREN fires his pistol, which is now cut in half, the end falling to the floor.
SFX: CLICK

[4] DAHLGREN unsheathes his sword.
DAHLGREN: WHAT ARE YOU?

[5] The INDIAN WARRIOR. Our first FULL look at him as he stands in all his glory with his obscenely large axe in both hands. He is a rotten corpse. He grins unintentionally through torn flesh on his face. His eyes glow an eerie blue. The warrior’s body is complete but has been dead at least wo weeks, strong but thin. His clothing is all intact and he has war paint applied to his dried out skin. He speaks in a terrible, raspy whisper (lettering effects).
WARRIOR: I COME FOR YOUR WOMEN AND CHILDREN.

PAGE 17

[1] ALICE BARNARD sits in a rocking chair and knits at the fire. Behind her stands JAHODA. She is dressed again.
JAHODA: MOTHER?

[2] JAHODA sits down on the rug beside ALICE’s chair. Alice puts her knitting down.
ALICE: JAHODA, YOU LOOK TIRED.

[3] The rain is hitting the window.

[4] JAHODA looks away to the floor, embarrassed, nervous.
JAHODA: MOTHER, I’M IN LOVE WITH SOMEONE. A MAN. A GUARD AT THE PRISON.

[5] WIDE SHOT. JAHODA looks up at ALICE. Alice sits still, taking in her words.

PAGE 18

[1] BIG PANEL. Back on the prison walls in the hard rain. DAHLGREN has locked weapons with the undead INDIAN WARRIOR. He pushes his sword down against the Indian’s axe, struggling against his opponent’s great strength.
CAP: “HE IS A GOOD MAN, MOTHER. HE IS KIND AND STRONG. WE INTEND TO MARRY, WITH FATHER’S CONSENT.”
CAP: “YOU WILL NEVER GET IT.”

[2] The INDIAN WARRIOR lowers his axe and headbutts DAHLGREN, throwing him off balance.
CAP: “WE LEAVE IN THE MORNING. YOUR FATHER DOES NOT INTEND FOR US TO RETURN FOR SOME TIME… IF AT ALL.”

[3] DAHLGREN, on the defensive, tries to regain his footing. The INDIAN WARRIOR takes the advantage and readies his axe above his head, about to slam it down into Dahlgren.
CAP: “YOU WILL NOT SEE THIS MAN AGAIN. FORGET HE EVEN EXISTS.”

[4] From behind the Indian. DAHLGREN leaps to the side as the INDIAN WARRIOR strikes and slashes his stomach open in one swift movement.
CAP: “I DO NOT WISH TO KNOW HIS NAME. IT IS ENOUGH THAT YOU HAVE DECIEVED US THIS FAR. YOU WERE ALWAYS A STRONG-WILLED CHILD…”

[5] The INDIAN WARRIOR falls sideways. DAHLGREN spins on the spot and, with his back to his opponent, thrusts his sword halfway into his body, a killing blow.
CAP: “YOUR FATHER WILL HEAR OF THIS.”

PAGE 19

[1] DAHLGREN remains in the same stance with his bloody sword positioned behind him, the blade down as the INDIAN WARRIOR slides off it to the floor.

[2] DAHLGREN changes stance, ready to strike the INDIAN WARRIOR should he try another attack. The Indian crawls, trying to stand.
CAP: “MOTHER…”

[3] The INDIAN WARRIOR pushes himself up with his big axe. DAHLGREN watches, his sword ready, a look of disgust on his face.

[4] DAHLGREN swipes his sword with all his might clean through the INDIAN WARRIORS neck, sending his head in the other direction. Lightning strikes in the background. The rain falls hard on the castle wall.
CAP: “MOTHER, I AM IN LOVE.”

PAGE 20

[1] DAHLGREN, still in the same position with his sword held out by his side. An arrow strikes him in the side and he doubles over in pain.
SFX: FWWWP

[2] DAHLGREN leans on his sword, now on one knee. Two more arrows appear stuck in his chest. He looks down at them in disbelief.
SFX: FWWP
SFX: FWP

[3] DAHLGREN looks up slightly as he slides further down to the stone floor. He sees something that disturbs him to his very core.
DAHLGREN: OH, GOD, NO. SAVE US.

[4] BIG PANEL. DAHLGREN dies on the prison wall in the foreground with his back to us. Beyond the wall we see outside the prison, up the valley. Through the rain we see an ARMY OF UNDEAD INDIAN WARRIORS ready for battle. Their eyes glow in the darkness. A hundred or more advance down the hill towards the prison, on foot and on undead horses, a great mass of shadows with eerie blue eyes.
DAHLGREN (weak): JA…HO…DA…
CAP: TO BE CONTINUED…

END OF ISSUE.

JonHParrish
07-07-2006, 05:19 AM
It's different, but so far so good. Keep it up.