Think outside the box
Posted by Dan Straw
Written by Dan Straw
Short Script, 9 pages (Drama, Adventure)
Viewed by: 7 Members
Uploaded: Jun 10, 2012
Latest Draft: Jun 10, 2012
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The short is a combination of live action and animation, telling the story of father and son who make a bond that will have an impact on their lives forever. Together Derek and Adam travel in to a magical animated world built around imagination, emotions and art.
The art creative process runs along side the main story as a sub plot. It helps to create the magical world which the two build together. The aim is to use a variation of art styles/techniques within the sequence to help distinguish the differences in characters moods, feelings and perspectives.
The story begins with a man and his son gathered in front of a chest, they sit in an attic. The man's name is Peter, he is telling his son Derek a story of excitement and adventure.
To help aid him in his story Peter improvises with items scattered about the room and from within the chest. The items include a sketchbook, a toy boat, marbles and a slingshot. Derek, interacts with them as he listens to his father's story.
On reaching the end of the story the scene fades and a older version of Derek is introduced. No longer is Derek in the attic but his study. He lifts his head up from his desk, he was dreaming of now a distant memory. Derek is around the age of forty and has recently lost his father. The death has taken its toll on Derek, he looks tired and worn down. Since the event he has taken refuge within his study away from his wife Susanne and their son, Adam.
In the study he is left with nothing but time and his own thoughts, he flicks through a sketchbook from the previous scene and turns to the last page, it is a blank page. In the middle of the room sits the chest, like Derek it is aged and worn. Putting the sketchbook aside he stands from his desk and moves over towards it only to be distracted from opening it by a voice from outside the room, it is his wife Susanne.
With no response from the study Susanne turns away from the double doors. She turns to look at the far end of the living room. Adam, a boy around the age of ten sits drawing. Scattered around him lie a range of coloured crayons, he looks up as Susanne announces it is time for him to go to bed. Quickly he adds the finishing touches to his picture and hands it to Susanne, she looks over his work smiling at what he has produced.
Seeing approval in his mum's eyes he asks if his dad will like the picture. Susanne looks Adam in the eyes and promises him that it will make his father happier than he can ever imagine. Susanne then tells him that they will show it him in the morning. A little disappointed, Adam heads off to bed.
Back in the study Derek sits sketching at his desk. The sketchbook now leans against a urn on the desk, open on a page of a watercolour of lake and lush green hill side. Derek looks back and forth from his own drawing to the sketchbook and in frustration he screws up the paper, throwing it across the room. It hits the chest and falls on the floor in front of it. Calming himself Derek gets up from his chair and approaches the chest. Opening it his eyes become wide with awe.
Adam lies in his bed thinking of his mothers words. Failing to wait for the morning he gets out of bed taking his picture from his drawers and leaves the room. He re-enters the living room quietly and tip toes across to the double doors. He stands in front of them explaining his reasons for being out of bed in a whisper.
Having no reply from inside the study Adam pulls the doors apart to discover that the room is vacant. Derek is no where to be seen. Adam enters the room a little dumbstruck at his father's absence. He sees the sketchbook on the table, picks it up and begins to look through; walking as he does so. He arrives at the blank page and then feels a crunch from underneath his foot. He looks down to discover the screwed up paper ball from earlier.
Placing the sketchbook aside Adam unscrews the paper to find a rough sketch of some woodlands. He looks up from the drawing and discovers the chest in front of him. Adam looks in to the chest, his eyes wide in amazement.
As the scene fades, a new landscape is introduced in a animation world. A sketched woodlands stretches off in to the distance, Adam lies on the floor. He lifts his head taking in his surroundings; the trees are twisted, the grass dead and a storm battles with the sky. It is Derek's sketch.
Adam too has changed and now takes on the form of a cartoon character drawn in a childish manner. Taking a moment to get over his confusion Adam remembers his missing father, he take a step forward. As he does a path magically sketches itself leading off into the clutter of the woods.
The scene opens to watercolour landscape of the lake and lush green hillsides that were seen from the sketchbook. Derek sits in a boat in the middle of a lake, he too like Adam has taken on a new form. He is black and white. He sits staring down at the sketchbook, tapping a pencil on the blank page.
Adam has now moved further in to the woodland and the sky is no longer to be seen. Lightening flashes and a shadow moves quickly amongst the trees. Adam is scared. In his panic he begins to back himself in to the trees as more noises are heard. Suddenly he trips and another flash of lightening strikes. Adam sits up to see a slingshot and a bag of marbles at his feet. The marbles glow with colour and standing out in the colourless environment.
Picking each item up, Adam places the marbles in to his pocket, loading one in to the slingshot. Suddenly a shadow creature jumps at Adam, he panics and fires the marble in to the air. It disappears in to the sky and more creatures come out of no where surrounding Adam. He screams for help.
Back at the lake Derek sits staring when suddenly water splashes on to his lap. He looks in to the water to see a marble glisten in the sunlight before it sinks. Curious he moves forward and looks in to the water to see not his reflection but his father, Peter looking back at him. Peter points at Derek's chest, in reaction Derek moves his hand over his heart. Peter winks with a glisten similar to that of the marble and disappears. Derek reaches in to his shirt pocket and discovers a folded up piece of paper. Magically Adam's drawing has appeared.
Looking at it, Derek smiles. Colour begins to flow through Derek, he is no longer black and white. The picture has changed something within. Suddenly all noises of the world return to Derek and he hears Adam's cry, he looks over in the distance to see the sketched woodland and rows in the direction of the woods.
Derek arrives in the woods moments later, he sees a swarm of shadow creatures surrounding something. A figure moves and in the middle lies Adam. He is motionless and all colour has now been drained from him. Adam is black and white as Derek once was. Seeing his son Derek charges at the crowd, shouting Adam's name. The shadow creatures scratch and grab him as he passes. They pull him to the floor but Derek keeps moving towards his Adam. He reaches him grabbing his hand and explains that Adam's drawing made him so happy. They break hands as Derek is pulled in to the woods by the creatures. Adam's hand glows with a child like colour from Derek's touch. The colour flows through his body.
The shadows laugh as they kick and punch Derek. They stop as they hear a noise, turning they see Adam now glowing with strong colours. He holds up the slingshot and fires. The marble hits one of the creatures exploding with colour on impact, the creature screams and fades away. Adam fires a few more shots at the shadows, they quickly begin to retreat.
Colour has now spilled on to the surroundings of where the marbles exploded. Adam runs over to his father, they hug. The world around them becomes much more colourful and dream like. The two get up and walk in to the distance, they have created Adam's picture.
The animation finishes and the story returns to the study. The chest now open, Derek sits slumped against it, looking down at Adam's picture. This is the first time the audience sees the picture. He smiles as he places it on his desk, looking around he sees all the items from the story sprawled across the floor. One by one he packs them away, back in to the chest. The sketchbook is the last of the items to go in, he holds it in his hands and then looks towards Adam asleep on the chair and then at the urn on his desk.
The next day Derek drives along in his car looking more fresh faced. Susanne sits in the passenger seat, holding the sketchbook and Adam in the back with the urn. They arrive at a destination unknown to the audience but to which Adam seems impressed.
The three are then see walking up a hill while Adam runs a head, he stops to look at the view. They are in the lush green countryside from the watercolour. Derek joins Adam to look at the view, after a moment of talking Derek hands Adam the sketchbook and talks to Adam about life and his new found meaning of it. At the end of the conversation Adam looks to the last page of the book, his picture now fills the blank page.
After a moment they look down at the lake to see the boat. Derek asks Adam if he wants to go in it. Excited Adam jumps up and runs down the hill. Susanne takes Derek's arm and they walk behind, down the hill, peacefully.