Get back - 21 march 2007.pdf

John's in love with Yoko, and he's no longer in love with the three of us.
The home of the University of Maryland, College Park is a pleasant town centering around the campus: Bookstores. Cafes. Restaurants. Everywhere you look, attractive students mill about. Many of them will be the leaders of tomorrow. .While others will graduate and get jobs at SPINNAKER RECORD SHOP. A too-hip-to-be-profitable record shop located near campus. Posters of good bands cover the wall: Radiohead, Johnny Cash, The Modern Lovers, and so on. However, the most well-represented band in the store is The Beatles. Their album posters are everywhere - Two clerks are working the store today. The first is a husky Peruvian named PIERO CHACON (late 20s). Piero is sifting through a number of USED ALBUMS. A male CUSTOMER stands nearby, trying to unload some of his collection. Piero stops on an album. He picks it up. It is the first Velvet Underground album with the BANANA cover. It was part of my dad’s collection.
CLOSE ON: The famous PEEL SLOWLY AND SEE command in the upper right hand corner of the album. The other clerk TED ARCHER (late 20s) eavesdrops on the conversation. Ted looks a bit worn down. Piero slides his hand into the sleeve, which makes the customer nervous. I already made sure it didn’t have any scratches. You should at least be wearing gloves or something. I cut my nails. I moisturize. I’ve handled thousands of records and the only one I scratched was Bon Jovi’s New Jersey album, which I scratched with a baseball bat. Your record will be fine. Piero slides the record out of its jacket. He looks at it and RECOILS. He stares at the customer. The customer looks ashamed of himself. Piero hands the record to Ted, who looks at the label and sees that it is REO SPEEDWAGON: GREATEST HITS. You were going to pass REO Speedwagon off as the Velvet Underground? Piero scrapes at the album sleeve. Specks of white paint come off on his finger. He holds up his finger to Ted. I should have noticed it the first time around. No. Whatever is inside these records.
Piero pats the stacks of the customer’s used records. .Has already infected the rest of our inventory. We’re going to have to quarantine the store. I don’t know what you’re talking about. That’s good. That’s a first step towards an honest life. Piero puts the REO Speedwagon record on a turntable and drops the needle on the third groove. The synthesizer-drenched power ballad “Can’t Fight This Feeling [Anymore]” erupts from the speakers. The other shoppers in the store look up with concern. Don’t worry. Everything is going to be fine. The customer exits the store a broken man. The moment he is gone, Piero pulls the needle off the record. It’s actually not a bad song, you know. For eighties power ballads. I’m sorry. I can’t hear you because my ears are full of blood. Lunchtime. Ted and his girlfriend JESSICA (30) eat sandwiches near the campus. Despite the hot day, Jessica wears heavy makeup, competing with the college girls. She sucks. And it’s at the Applebee’s on Baltimore Avenue? I didn’t know they had live music at Applebee’s. Maybe he can help you with a job. You could bartend. I already have two jobs. I work at the record shop and I’m a musician. You should come over before the show. We could fuck or something. You know that I can’t hang out Wednesday or Thursday afternoons. Right. Those are UFO Days or whatever the hell you and Piero call them.
I still don’t understand what you guys actually do out there in the woods. Ted takes a breath. He seems annoyed to have to tell this story again. There used to be a band called Parliament/Funkadelic, which was the best funk group of the 1970’s. EXT. SUBURBAN HOME, SUITLAND, MARYLAND - LATE A wake-and-bake ROADIE sits on a ratty couch watching television, drinking a BEER with his CEREAL. The legend is, when the band had money problems, its equipment somehow wound up in the garage of a roadie from Suitland who lived with his mom. PULL BACK TO REVEAL: the Roadie is living in the GARAGE. Next to his makeshift apartment is the MOTHERSHIP - the space chariot of George Clinton and his band Parliament/Funkadelic. The Mothership is huge, cone-shaped and covered in lights.
The garage door OPENS. The Roadie covers his eyes from the sun. His MOM is stands in front of him. When the roadie’s mom saw how much space the equipment was taking up, she told her son to get rid of it. LATER - The Roadie drives a pickup truck, hauling a FLATBED behind him. The Mothership sits on the flatbed. A couple of the ROADIE’S FRIENDS ride on top of it. The roadie took the band’s famous stage prop the “Mothership,” which landed at the beginning of their shows, and dumped it in the woods somewhere in Suitland.
The Roadie pulls the truck down a dirt road leading into the woods. Suitland is thirteen miles from here. If we find that thing, we can sell it to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. I could finally afford to move to a city with a music scene. I have condos to sell. I’ll see you tonight. Jessica gets up from the table and walks away. She leaves her sandwich trash behind. Ted drives his old Toyota Camry down the SUITLAND PARKWAY - a two-lane road bordered by trees. Piero studies a map of the parkway in the passenger seat. The map is peppered with RED X’s - the turf they’ve already canvassed. Of the six hundred and ten acres of woodlands along the Suitland Parkway, we’ve scoured about one hundred and four. Which means that - hypothetically - if the Mothership is located on the last acre we search- -It’ll take us five more years to find it. Ted and Piero tramp through the woods. They use sticks to smack away underbrush. They swat bugs and walk through webs. Ok. Top three rock atrocities of all time. Go. Three: The Rolling Stones continuing to record after 1972. If they quit after Exile on Main Street , they’d be remembered as the second-best band of all time, as opposed to just somewhere in the top twenty. I think the idea that the Stones would be considered second-best is high, but I see where you’re going with that. Two: Brian Wilson’s descent into schizophrenia, which meant no more albums like Pet Sounds and kept him from completing Smile when he was at the height of his powers. But mental illness is not something that could have been prevented.
You said atrocities. A man’s brain giving up on him is an atrocity. Ted and Piero use some tree branches to flatten a thorn bush.
For the sake of closure, you should finish the list. One: John Lennon meeting Yoko Ono in 1966 - a moment that led directly to the end of the Beatles.
There was tension in the band before Yoko Ono came along. Yoko Ono broke up the Beatles. An international tribunal should have put her on trial for crimes against humanity. She should have been locked in a special room in hell and forced to listen to her own records for eternity. Piero yawns. He’s heard all this before. Dude. You weren’t there. You don’t know what really happened. That’s right. I wasn’t there. Because if I was I would have made sure that Yoko Ono never got her claws into John Lennon. The Beatles would have stayed together. Piero shakes his head. He looks off into the woods. Nothing but thickets and brushwood ahead of them. I don’t think we’re going to find the Mothership today. The restaurant is packed with fat families and college drinkers watching the Terrapins basketball game at the bar. The place is loud and nobody is listening to Ted, who is sitting on a stool in the corner of the restaurant, near the kitchen. He holds an acoustic guitar. He leans into the microphone in front of him. His voice isn’t amplified. He taps on the microphone. Nothing. The Applebee’s MANAGER sees what is happening and walks over. Yeah. I didn’t realize the basketball game was on tonight, so we had to kill your mike.
Ted looks at the microphone cord. It’s unplugged. You know how it is. But you’re still more than welcome to play. The manager is signalled over by a waitress. Jessica sits at the bar, not paying any attention to Ted. She is flirting with a COLLEGE STUDENT. Ted gets off his stool and picks up the microphone cord. He is about to plug it in, but decides against it. No point. He drops the cord and leaves the restaurant with his guitar. Nobody sees him go. INT. SPINNAKER RECORD SHOP, BATHROOM - MORNING Ted brushes his teeth in the record shop bathroom. Next to the mirror is a photo of John Lennon. He looks at the picture while he brushes. Tell me there’s a bottle of aspirin in there. Ted looks at an aspirin bottle on the sink. Good. When you come out, I want you to shove the bottle of aspirin down my throat so that I choke to death. I won’t fight you. INT. SPINNAKER RECORD SHOP - MOMENTS LATER Ted and Piero sit across from each other behind the record shop counter. They drink tea from paper cups. I wasn’t made for these times. I don’t understand the modern world. Piero sits across from a pretty SPANISH GIRL. A crab dinner sits on the plate in front of him. He is wearing a bib. The Spanish Girl fiddles with a handheld smartphone-like device, not even paying attention to Piero. A plate of crabs sits in front of her too. The entire time she was fiddling with this chrome phone thing. Typing and talking. I was just looking up what kind of crabs these are. It says here that Pacific Dungeness crab has tastier meat. -No no no. I’m sure these will be fine. The Spanish Girl pokes at her crabs, disheartened. Piero cracks open his crab, unsure about himself. Crab juice squirts on his bib. Piero shakes his head, completely irritated. Because some gadget said her food wasn’t good, she was bummed for the entire dinner. She barely made eye contact with me. I hate the modern world. That’s just so I can carry my music around. I tell the iPod what to do, not the other way around. I think I’m nostalgic for an innocent time I didn’t actually experience. Is that even possible? You should date a customer. There are only two reasons a girl walks in here - she needs change for the parking meter, or she knows the lyrics to every song on Big Star’s first album. Date a customer. It’s not just about dating. It’s about this entire era . Plus, the only people who come in here are guys that look like that. Piero points to a PATRON with thinning blonde hair holding a stack of LPs. The customer looks at them and then nervously glances away. How was the show last night, by the way? Didn’t even get the chance to play it. But I’m sure they wouldn’t have cared either way. That’s not true. Some of the new songs are decent. Ted looks at Piero, who has apparently just betrayed his true opinion of Ted’s songwriting. ‘Decent’ and ‘good’ mean the same thing. If somebody is a decent person, it means they’re good. The words are interchangeable. I was born in the wrong decade, Ted. I should have been around in the sixties. I would have counted as exotic. Ted nods. He was born in the wrong decade too. Ted and Piero turn to look at older customer wearing a grease-splattered work shirt. This is POP (late 60s). Pop is an Englishman. He has the rheumy eyes of a drug addict. I was living in London in sixty-six. I would have just brought you to Sibylla’s nightclub and passed you off as Harry Belafonte. Pop holds up a copy of Harry Belafonte’s You do sort of resemble Harry Belafonte, in a Peruvian kind of way. I’d impersonate Osama bin Laden if it would get me girls. Your name is Pop, right?. You work at that auto shop down the street. You came in a few months ago and bought the Zombies’ first record. Ted looks like he has a hundred things to ask. Pop smiles and goes back to looking through the stacks of records. Behind Ted, Piero POUNDS his fist on the store computer keyboard. He unplugs the keyboard, throws it in the TRASH, and stomps on it until it breaks. Ted eats lunch with Jessica, who is covering up the bags under her eyes with makeup. I talked to the head of the real estate office and he said he’d be willing to bring you in for an interview. He was a Fine Arts major at Maryland, same as you. I don’t want to work in a real estate office. I like the record store. It will reflect poorly on me if you don’t show up. You know, there’s a difference between giving up and being reasonable. You could have a job that makes you more money and still play the types of gigs you play. Ted, be reasonable. You need to stop it with this ridiculous fantasy that you’re somebody. EXT. SUITLAND PARKWAY WOODS - LATE AFTERNOON Ted and Piero slash their way through the woods.
. Screw that . You’re not working real estate. Jessica doesn’t get the idea of being passionate about something. I honestly understand how you’ve been with her this long.
.She’s down-to-earth, we’ve been together forever. ‘We’ve been together forever’ is a lame excuse for staying with a person. I’m sure. Hell, she’s probably an apple computer when it comes to compatibility. What did I tell you when you first started dating her? Ted and Piero slosh through some marshy swampland. That’s right - never date a Jessica. I challenge you to find a man who has had a good experience with a Jessica. My high school Jessica cheated on me. My friend Billy’s Jessica stabbed him with a nail file. And now this Jessica is trying to crush your dreams. And maybe she has a point! I mean, something should have happened by now to validate the idea that I’m a musician. Maybe I should be more responsible in my life. Huey Lewis was 32 before he found any real success. Leonard Cohen was 33. Lets drop the Jessica conversation. I play open mike nights and I work in a record store. I’m not going to find anyone better. And what have you said you would do if you ever became a rich famous musician? That’s right. You know damn well there’s nothing wrong with working in a record store. That’s something Jessica is putting in your head. Ted and Piero slide through a tight grove of trees. Abruptly, they both stop in their tracks. They stare at something in front of them, in awe. Pull back to reveal: The legendary Parliament/Funkadelic MOTHERSHIP. A beam of sunlight shines down on it through the forest canopy. The Mothership is dirty from years of exposure to the elements, but aside from a bit of rust it’s structurally intact. Ted walks around the Mothership. It appears undamaged. Carefully, Ted grabs the sides of the door and SLIDES it open. INT. PARLIAMENT/FUNKADELIC MOTHERSHIP - CONTINUOUS Ted and Piero peer into the Mothership. From where they’re standing they can see a dashboard of multi-colored buttons and lights. There are a few passenger seats. Ted cautiously steps into the Mothership. The floor holds his weight. He ducks so he doesn’t hit his head on the ceiling. Piero follows him inside. The Mothership is barely big enough for the two of them. Ted sits down. He scrutinizes the console - lots of meters and different types of gauges. This thing has probably been out here for twenty-five years. There’s no way it could work. Ted locates a red SWITCH. He flicks it. Bit by bit, the Mothership begins to BUZZ AND The loudest sound is a RATTLING that drowns out the rest of the noise. When my Camry broke a fan belt that was the noise it made. Piero leans over Ted’s shoulder. They look down at three ELECTRONIC READOUTS - one marked PRESENT TIME, one marked DESTINATION COORDINATES and one marked DESTINATION TIME. Ted plays with a keyboard underneath the “Destination Time” readout. He punches in various dates - 11-22-1963. 7-4-1776. Ted looks over at the “Destination Coordinates” readout. It reads 38’50 N/76’55 W. The RATTLING sound is getting louder.
Do you think time machines count as imports? A small automotive repair shop filled with old Jaguars and BMWs. Pop is fiddling around beneath a Ted and Piero, dirty from the woods, stare at his feet. I think we have a slight problem with our. car. This is a strange request. But if you will come with us for a couple of hours, I will give you whatever you want from the store. Does that include the glass case underneath the counter? Everything but “Elvis: Aloha from Hawaii.” I could probably make time to help you tomorrow. Ted sits on his bed in his small room. An acoustic guitar rests on a stand in the corner. A few PAINTINGS hang on the wall - original work by Ted. They’re good. An unfinished canvas rests on an easel. He picks up the telephone and dials a number. He gets Jessica’s voicemail. You’ve reached Jessica! If I’m not picking up it probably means I’m out selling selling selling.
Ted hangs up the phone. He scans his bookcase, passing over ART BOOKS (notably one titled THE HAIRY WHO GROUP: A RETROSPECTIVE) until he finds what he’s been looking for: THE NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC ATLAS OF THE WORLD. He checks the index and finds the page for LONDON. CLOSE ON: The coordinates for London - 51’30 N/07’00 W. Ted dog-ears the page. He plucks another book from the case. It’s about the Beatles. The pages inside are heavily marked - this book has been well-loved. He flips through the chapters until he reaches his target paragraph: .The first encounter between John Lennon and Yoko Ono took place on November 9, 1966 at the Indica Art Gallery in London, when Ono handed Lennon a card that said “Breathe”. He puts a RECORD on a turntable and hits play. It’s “Can’t Fight This Feeling [Anymore]” by REO Speedwagon. He moves along to the song. He likes it. EXT. SPINNAKER RECORD SHOP - THE NEXT MORNING There is a CLOSED sign in the Spinnaker Record Shop window. A pale RECORD COLLECTOR looks at the sign and walks sadly away. Ted, Piero and Pop stand in front of the Mothership. Ted holds the Atlas. Pop holds a toolbox.
EXT. PARLIAMENT/FUNKADELIC MOTHERSHIP - LATER Pop stands on the side of the Mothership. He uses an electric drill to unscrew an exterior panel. Pop undoes the last of the exterior screws and lifts up the PANEL. It’s heavy. He hands it down to Ted and Piero, who place it carefully on the ground. INT. PARLIAMENT/FUNKADELIC MOTHERSHIP - LATER Ted and Pop inspect the dashboard, paying particular attention to the “Destination Time” and “Destination Coordinates” electronic readouts. Who knows? It might work. There wouldn’t be a reason for a band to build something this elaborate if they didn’t plan to put it to use. I wonder how they came up with the design. The band was from Motown. They were probably taking LSD and knew guys who built cars. Combine the two. bang. Time machine.
Piero pops his head through the door. He holds up the replacement FAN BELT. EXT. PARLIAMENT/FUNKADELIC MOTHERSHIP - LATER Pop finishes fiddling with the fan belt. Ted sits inside the Mothership. He flicks the red SWITCH and the power comes back on - but this time, the engine PURRS.
While you were up there did you see what the Mothership uses for fuel? MOMENTS LATER - Ted and Piero crouch on the side of the Mothership and stare into the engine. Pop points to a CENTERPIECE mounted on top of the engine. It looks like a cylinder filled with radiant pink GOO. I’ve been looking at it all day trying to figure out what it is. But I think I figured it out. Piero cautiously sticks his head inside the Mothership. He puts his ear against the cylinder. It’s making a LOW THROBBING SOUND. Gentlemen, I’m willing to bet that the Mothership is powered by funk. And there seems to be some left over from the seventies. INT. PARLIAMENT/FUNKADELIC MOTHERSHIP - LATER CLOSE ON: Ted’s hands adjusting his WATCH to the “Present Time” on the dashboard.
Piero and Pop are standing outside the door. Pop winds his own watch. Ted punches the date and “10:20” into the dashboard. The Mothership continues to buzz and whirr with electricity. Alright. I’m setting it for a couple of minutes into the future.
You know, if you die it’s going to put me in a bad spot, because I’ll have to pick up your shifts at the store. I’ll keep that in mind. Shut the door. Piero closes the door. Ted checks the readouts and waits for a moment. Nothing happens, though the Mothership is SHAKING like it wants to do something. He looks around and spots a LEVER on the floor that seems to have some potential.
Ted pushes DOWN on the lever. All at once, the Mothership begins to RAPIDLY VIBRATE and make ominous CREAKING NOISES. EXT. PARLIAMENT/FUNKADELIC MOTHERSHIP - SAME TIME The Mothership is QUAKING ferociously. Rivers of blue ELECTRICITY are running over its outer shell. The energy is knocking branches off nearby TREES. Piero and Pop back away from the Mothership. They watch as it LIFTS several feet off the ground. Thunderous TREMORS run through the Mothership. Ted shuts his eyes. Piero and Pop have taken refuge behind a group of ROCKS. They stare at the trembling Mothership. And then, the Mothership comes to a complete STOP. No movement, no noises, no anything at all - it just calmly HOVERS above the ground. Piero and Pop wait for whatever is next. .And so does Ted. He opens his eyes, confused by the sudden stillness. Then, the calm is followed by a tremendous SURGE OF ACCELERATION. Ted is THROWN from his seat and FLATTENED against the floor. Piero and Pop watch the Mothership BURST VERTICALLY INTO THE SKY and DISAPPEAR IN A FLASH OF WHITE LIGHT. A charred and smoking ELECTRIC DRILL clunks to the ground in front of them. Piero comes out from behind the rock and stands in the middle of the SCORCHED EARTH from where the Mothership launched. Pop checks his watch. FIVE SECONDS until 10:20. There is a CRACKLING of electricity in the air. Pop darts out from behind the rock and TACKLES PIERO. .At the same moment the MOTHERSHIP REAPPEARS ABOVE THEM and CRASHES right where Piero would have been standing. The Mothership door OPENS and Ted CRAWLS OUT. He is bruised from the trip. He lumbers to Piero and points to his WATCH. Piero holds up his WRIST. Ted compares their WATCHES. The times don’t match. Ted sits on top of a boulder near the Mothership eating a sandwich. Pop continues to tinker with the ship’s engine.
Piero laboriously climbs up the rock and sits next to Ted. He catches his breath. I’m thinking we should play with it before we sell it to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Forget the ‘we’ part of that sentence. No way. I saw what you looked like when you crawled out of there, and I bruise easier than you. Come on. Aren’t you curious? Anywhere in the world, anywhere in time. We could change history with that thing. Keep JFK from being shot, stop Bill Gates from inventing the computer. Bill Gates didn’t invent the computer. The only way I’m climbing inside the Mothership is if it’s for a really important reason. I mean, we’d have go back and kill Hitler or something. Fine. Done. We’ll kill Hitler. Nobody would disagree with that. Good. Then I’ll come with you. We’re killing Hitler. Of course, that will probably be pretty dangerous. It wouldn’t be dangerous if we killed baby Hitler or something. I don’t know. Even sneaking into Baby Hitler’s house. You know that any father who could raise a kid like that is going to have a shotgun. Probably a few shotguns. And you wouldn’t want to be lying there on the floor all shot up by Hitler’s dad, thinking about how you should have maybe had a little bit of fun before you tried something so risky, honorable though it may be. Piero looks at Ted, understanding the subtext. I could get girls if we went somewhere else. INT. PARLIAMENT/FUNKADELIC MOTHERSHIP - LATER Ted and Piero are strapped into their seats inside the Mothership. I’m not sure that’s such a good idea. Ted punches a series of numbers into the “Destination Time” readout - 11-9-66. He puts a set of coordinates into the “Destination Coordinates” readout - 51’30 N/07’00 W. London. The engine seems to be working fine. You shouldn’t have any problems. Of course. Where did you decide you would go? I’m going to stop Yoko Ono and John Lennon from meeting. Pop nods. He takes a scrap of paper from his pocket and scribbles something on it. He hands it to Ted. That’s the address of where I lived in London. You’ll need a home base for such a noble pursuit. Hold on. You said we were just going to London to get girls. I said you were going to get girls. And in the meantime, I’ll be saving rock and roll. Piero fiddles with his seatbelt, trying to loosen it. It’s stuck good. Rust. What should we tell the younger you when we show up? Tell me that Bob said you could stay at my flat. Ted and Piero are silent. Piero momentarily stops fiddling with the seatbelt. One more thing - if you see me back there, tell me to lay off the reds. They’re bad for you. Pop waves and SLAMS the door shut. Piero finally has his seatbelt off, and is holding it in his hand. Ted power ups the Mothership. Piero buckles up. Ted wraps his fingers around the emergency brake. EXT. ST. JAMES PARK, LONDON - LATE AFTERNOON St. James Park. Regal. A pair of ducks swim on the lake. An old man walks across a small bridge. Buckingham Palace is visible in the distance. The peace is shattered by a CRACKLING OF ELECTRICITY in the air, followed by the BOOM of the Mothership reappearing. It HITS A TREE as it PLUMMETS to the ground, which FLIPS it over. It lands upside down. The DOOR swings open. Ted and Piero crawl out and collapse on the ground. Ted’s lip is cut. Piero is covered in bruises.
Piero crawls over to Ted and starts HITTING him. Ted WRESTLES Piero to the ground. They scuffle while shouting at each other. You don’t have to help me if you don’t want to! This is something I’m doing. No shit I’m not helping you! Do you have any idea what the consequences of something like- -I know exactly what the consequences are! If Yoko and John don’t meet, the Beatles don’t break up. If they don’t break up, they cut more albums. And if they cut more albums, there’s more to make me feel good when I feel worthless. Piero stares at Ted. Aha, so that’s the reason. Piero coughs. Lets check to see if there’s any damage. Piero and Ted limp around the upside-down Mothership, inspecting it. Ted is standing in front of a wide-open exterior PANEL. Piero walks over. They stare down at the ENGINE. Ted points to the CENTERPIECE on top of the engine. All the pink GOO is gone. It’s too heavy to move. Pick up some sticks and we’ll hide it. Piero picks up some sticks. They start covering the Mothership with dirt and leaves. Ted and Piero CLIMB over a wall and out of the park, onto a wide road near Parliament Square. A group of female PASSERSBY stare at Piero. Maybe they think you’re Harry Belafonte. Say something to them. The eyes of the passersby light up. Piero gives them a smile. Holy shit. It’s working. They really do think I’m Harry Belafonte. Ted STEPS on a loose newspaper blowing around. He checks the date - 9 November 1966 . Let’s start asking some people if they know how to get to the Indica Gallery. Christ. You could have given yourself a little bit of a cushion. What for? This is easy - we show up at the gallery, I run interference, and John and Yoko never meet. Piero shakes his head and walks over to a female PASSERBY. Ted and Piero have clearly been walking around for awhile. In Soho, they’re starting to see hints of “Swinging London” - girls in short MOD dresses. Men dressed in velvet DANDY suits. Boutique SHOPS. But Ted and Piero look too tired to be enjoying it. The German tourists said they thought it was on Rupert Street. This is Rupert Street. You didn’t think you should maybe mention that those girls weren’t even from here? They were so hot that I just figured they knew where they were going.
-For God’s sake! Fine! I’ll ask somebody! The Mod Girl looks like a young Mia Farrow. Ted temporarily loses the ability to speak. Ted continues to look at her, not saying anything. Piero walks over to help. A mid-sized gallery in an expensive area. A MINI COOPER is parked outside the gallery, next to which the car’s CHAUFFEUR smokes a cigarette.
Ted and Piero stand across the street. Intimidated. Ted and Piero walk cautiously across the street. Ted takes the gallery’s doorknob in his hand. He TURNS IT. An epicenter of avant-garde cool. Politically radical books for sale. Art by Christo. A poster on display with the name of the current show: UNFINISHED CONCEPTS/PRESENT THOUGHT. Entering the gallery, Ted abruptly STOPS. He looks like he might pass out. At the opposite end of the room stands JOHN LENNON (late - circle glasses, well tailored clothing and a bit stoned. Lennon is standing across from a thirty-something Asian woman - YOKO ONO. Yoko is dressed in a black leotard. Ted and Piero watch as Yoko solemnly hands Lennon a piece of paper. CLOSE ON PAPER: There is a single word on the note - BREATHE.
Ted and Piero are witnessing John and Yoko’s first meeting. Lennon gives Yoko a smile, and walks over to a small table. A title card reading APPLE is propped up in front of a piece of fruit, next to which is a price tag - If you’re thinking about doing something, you should probably get going. Yoko points Lennon to a LADDER that leads to a BLANK CANVAS stuck to the ceiling. A chain with a SPYGLASS hangs from the canvas. Lennon climbs the ladder and uses the spyglass to read a single microscopic word on the canvas. Lennon smiles. Yoko leads Lennon to a table with a piece of PLASTERBOARD and a bucket of NAILS. A label attached to a HAMMER reads - “Instructions: Put Nails in Wood.” Nobody has done so yet. I’ll let you hammer a nail into it if you pay five shillings. I’ll give you an imaginary five shillings if you let me put in an imaginary nail. Yoko breaks a smile. She and Lennon are on the same wavelength. Ted sits on the curb, his head buried in his hands. Piero sits next to him. I mean, we ripped the fabric of space-time. Let’s just find the place where Pop told us to meet the younger him.
Ted and Piero turn onto Carnaby Street - the heart of Swinging London. It’s like a different city. Hip-looking young men wear colorful suits made of exotic materials. Young model-types in miniskirts zip about on scooters. Jazz and pop music pour out of cafes and boutiques.
The electric atmosphere is doing nothing to make Ted feel better. But Piero is loving it. Piero makes eye contact with a POSH YOUNG WOMAN - the spitting image of Twiggy. The woman smiles and walks past. Another WOMAN approaches. Do you know any Harry Belafonte songs aside from Day-O? Thirty-nine Carnaby Street. Let’s find it. MOMENTS LATER - Ted and Piero stand outside 39 Carnaby Street. The first floor is a boutique featuring trousers and jackets. .But the SECOND FLOOR is hosting what appears to be quite the happening party. A song by the Small Faces blasts out of the windows. Laughter bursts out into the night. Really think about the logic of what you just said. A COUPLE walks out the door and Ted and Piero slide inside. INT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT - CONTINUOUS Ted and Piero walk up a stairwell populated by stylish Boho-types. They reach the top of the stairs and get their first look at the apartment, which looks like a mod ballroom.
Colorful lights hang from the ceiling. Young SOPHISTICATES dance with each other or are otherwise occupied smoking hookahs and talking and being seen. Look at these women. Let’s go have some sex. Your girlfriend back home won’t be born for a decade. If you slept with one of these girls, there’s no way it could count as cheating. If we get stuck here, I’m thinking we should prevent Jessica from ever being conceived . Castrate her dad or kill her mom or something. We have an opportunity to change the world for the better. We won’t get stuck. We’ll find some funk for the Mothership. Gentlemen, we have strange visitants in our midst. They turn to see POP (26). In a room full of is perhaps the most dashing - slender and blonde and entirely in his element.
The INTELLECTUALS standing beside him look at Ted and Piero. I am Terence Bailey, and these are my associates, Robert Fraser and Alexander Plunkett-Greene. I’m Ted Archer and this is. Harry Belafonte. Bob said we should look you up when we got to London. I’m sure he did. At times I feel Bob is having me run a home for wayward Americans.
Please make yourselves at home. There are hors d’oeuvres on the table near the fireplace. All my food goes to waste. The lads here live on speed and the girls only eat birth control pills. Piero looks like he’s going to die of happiness. INT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT STAIRWAY - LATER Piero sits on the stairs surrounded by a group of young LOVELIES - breasts, long legs and short skirts everywhere. Piero looks completely uncomfortable. I would have thought you’d have a stronger accent. Piero looks at the lovelies. For some reason, they’re not repelled by him. He can’t believe this is happening. INT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT LIVING ROOM - SAME TIME Ted sits on a Persian rug with a circle of ARTISTS, sharing a HOOKAH. He takes a long pull on the HOSE, holds it, and exhales. Hash. Mr. David Jones here managed to procure it for us. Ted stares at a young man sitting in the circle - DAVID JONES. Ted recognizes him. How do you know I’m thinking of changing my name? He’s the biggest concert promoter in London. Ted takes another pull on the hookah. It all makes sense now. Across from Ted, a PARTY GUEST is plucking at an acoustic GUITAR. The Party Guest hands Ted the guitar. Ted begins to play the opening notes of “Purple Haze.” He’s great. Everybody around him watches, including JIMI HENDRIX, who is standing against a wall talking to another VISITOR. Man. That’s all I’ve ever wanted to do. Ted continues to play, getting into it. He’s stoned. Jimi watches him, defeated. INT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT LIVING ROOM - THE NEXT MORNING Ted and Piero sit with Pop at the kitchen table drinking tea. Between their dirty clothing and their hangovers, they look like shit. If you boys are going to be staying here, let me at least offer you some clothing. I can’t be seen with you if you’re dressed like that. MOMENTS LATER - Ted sits on Pop’s bed wearing VELVET TROUSERS and a PIRATE SHIRT. He looks ridiculous. Piero comes out of the bathroom wearing tight DANDY SUIT. He has a gauze SCARF tied around his neck. I think we should check on the Mothership. Holy shit. I know what you’re going to do. It’s the ultimate take-one-for-the-team. Ted sits on the curb outside the Indica Gallery. He writes something on a piece of PAPER he is holding in his hand. CLOSE ON PAPER: It is titled THINGS I KNOW YOKO ONO LIKES, under which he has written: ART NUMBERS FAME RUINING BEST BAND EVER LEOTARDS Ted pushes open the door to the gallery and steps inside. A few ART STUDENTS are walking around looking at the exhibit. .And in the corner of the room, Yoko Ono is adjusting what appears to be some sort of white sculpture. She is wearing a big sweater and a leotard, with tights. Ted walks towards her. Here goes nothing. Ted sees that the sculpture is actually a COMPLETELY WHITE CHECKERBOARD. All the CHECKERS have also been painted white. Yoko looks at him. Her eyes are big and dark - pretty. Ted is intimidated. MOMENTS LATER - Ted and Yoko sit across from each other over the all-white checkerboard. The point is to play until you forget whose checkers are whose. Ted is trying to come across as a great guy. Yoko seems to detect this. She moves one of her pieces. It’s nice to see another American artist over here. No. This is a vacation. But I do show back in the states. I’m actually part of the Hairy Who group out of Chicago. Yoko makes eye contact with Ted. She knows exactly what he is talking about. The Hairy Who that concentrates on acne and strange sexual encounters? I like the work you do with linoleum and human hair. Ted reaches across the board to move one of the checkers. It’s difficult because of his form-fitting pirate shirt. You mean this? Only when I’m traveling. You dress like a pirate when you go abroad? Pause. Yoko is smarter than Ted thought. If you’re looking for comfort, I suggest you switch over to big sweaters and leotards. I couldn’t pull off the leggings. My calves have a weird shape to them. Yoko lifts her leg onto the table. She’s right - even through her tights, her calf muscle looks strange. Ted scrutinizes Yoko’s leg. This is actually starting to be fun. You’re right. The Colorado River would run right through there.
Ted lifts his leg onto the table. He rolls up the leg of his pants. His calf muscle is weird too. You’re right. It is the Maine coastline.
And look - see how my knee is kinda triangular? Newfoundland. It’s like America the Beautiful was composed solely for our lower bodies. It’s you, me, and somebody out there whose leg hair looks exactly like amber waves of grain. Or whose cock looks like George Washington. Ted makes another move on the checkerboard. Piero trudges through St. James Park to the spot where the Mothership crashed. He looks down at his new CUBAN-HEELED BOOTS, which are covered in mud.
Goddamn Ted. Boots are ruined. Came for women, and now I’m doing this shit. Piero reaches the small grove where he and Ted covered the Mothership. and finds an empty IMPRINT where the Mothership should be. Ted and Yoko sit across from each other eating sandwiches. It looks like they’ve been intently talking about something. .I think that in the future nobody will have to eat food anymore, because science will have figured out a way to make everybody photosynthetic. Like plants. What do you think the future will be like? Well, I think computers will be hooked up to a database of all the world’s information, and we’ll use them to send mail to anybody anywhere without needing a stamp. And I think that the world will get much hotter. And I think that people will look back on right now and see it as a special time. Do you think people will know who I am in the future? Yoko SMACKS Ted. Meat pops out of his sandwich. He laughs. Piero searches for clues. He notices muddy TIRE TRACKS leading away from the site. Piero looks up to see a bobby-capped POLICEMAN standing in front of him. The Policeman scrutinizes Piero’s mod/dandy clothing. Perhaps you mean the sculpture that men were using as a hiding spot to fornicate with each other. Ted walks Yoko down the sidewalk, back to the Indica Gallery. Do you know what your next project will be? I’m deciding between traveling to India to record the sound of falling snow, or making a film montage of the navels of 365 people. Ted laughs. He seems genuinely entertained. Well, I’d like to volunteer my belly button if that’s what you decide on. Every artist is a conceptual artist. I’m a con artist. But it’s the only job that allows me to act like I’m in kindergarten all day, and get paid for it. I’ve already made plans with a friend. Ted stands on the street outside Pop’s apartment. Above him, Piero is sitting on the fire escape smoking a CIGARETTE. Piero drops the apartment keys down to Ted. INT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT - MOMENTS LATER Ted and Piero sit across from each other on overstuffed beanbag chairs. The policeman told me it was taken to the scrap heap. It was being used as a gay bathhouse. We have to sit in there on the way home. We’re not going home Ted. The Mothership is gone .
I wouldn’t worry. Nobody is going to just dismantle a thing like that. I’m sure it’s still around. Why are you acting so optimistic right now? I’m not acting optimistic. I just think we’ll get it back. Ted. What happened when you went to see Yoko? She is completely unlike I thought she would be- -Intelligent and funny and artistic and amazing and we went out- Piero grabs a nearby MAGAZINE and rolls it up. -To lunch and had a great conversation and- Stop . I still have drugs in my system from last night too. We’re both light-headed, but this is I am supposed to be here for women! Not you! I want women and I want you to not be seeing Yoko- Ted and Piero hear the sound of a key in the doorknob. The door opens and Pop enters. They silently look at him. Pop, do you know where London’s scrap heap is located? Of course. The Scrap Heap is an after-hours club. It’s quite a stylish crowd, really. If you’d like, I’ll take you gentlemen there this evening. Ted and Piero think about this. Not what they were expecting. You did promise to introduce me to girls. Well, I’m a man of my word, chronology be damned. Ted sits incognito across the street from the Indica Gallery. Yoko emerges from the gallery. She walks across the street and - to Ted’s surprise - quietly ducks into a BAR. Ted looks at the name of the bar - THE SCOTCH OF ST. JAMES. He tries to follow her inside, but is stopped by a DOORMAN. This is a private club. Ms. Ono was invited here by a member. EXT. ALLEY BEHIND THE SCOTCH OF ST. JAMES - MOMENTS LATER Ted walks towards a group of WAITERS gathered behind the bar, smoking cigarettes on their break. Can one of you let me in? I’m supposed to meet somebody. INT. THE SCOTCH OF ST. JAMES, UPSTAIRS - MOMENTS LATER The upstairs interior of The Scotch of St. James looks like a crowded speakeasy. Everybody is stylish. An exclusive place. Ted stands against a wall, BAREFOOT. He sees that the truly hip-looking people are walking DOWNSTAIRS into the basement. INT. THE SCOTCH OF ST. JAMES, DOWNSTAIRS - CONTINUOUS Lots of PRETTY GIRLS in miniskirts and YOUNG MEN who resemble Victorian poets. A BAND plays on a small stage in the corner of the room in front of which is a DANCE FLOOR. The ELITE of Swinging London crowd into booths along the perimeter of the room. Musicians. Artists. Fashion Models.
Ted walks among the booths. He steals a HIGHBALL GLASS from a table. Holding a glass makes it look more like he belongs. In the final booth, he spots Yoko. Sitting across from her - of course - is John Lennon. Yoko sees Ted and waves him over. He approaches the booth. I told the doorman I was in the Mamas and the Papas. Ted is suddenly immensely aware that John Lennon is talking to him.
British cuisine has done wonders for your physique, Mama. John, this is Ted. He’s part of the Hairy Who art collective out of Chicago. Ted and Lennon shake hands. Ted tries to hold himself together. Nice to meet you. John. I like your music very much. Ted’s work with the Hairy Who concentrates on bizarre sexual encounters. Join us at the table. We’ll order you a tropical drink and make a beach in your mind. Ted sits down in the booth next to Lennon, who holds up a hand for a waitress. Ted notices that a good part of the room is glancing over at them. I’d like a some sort of concoction of rum and blue liquor to make Mr. Mama Cass here feel like he is back in California. And furthermore, I’d like you to make something far too strong for Ms. Ono - if she snogs me by the end of the night, I’ll tip £100.
Yoko lightly shoves Lennon. A bit of jealousy crosses Ted’s face. Lennon asked me here to discuss art. And up until just now he was being a gentleman. A barefoot American joins our table and I find the urge to claim you, my dear. On to the topic of art at once.
Pop and Piero step out of a chauffeured vehicle in front of an innocuous looking building. Dozens of people are queued out front. Pop and Piero walk to the front of the line. The doorman lets them in. This is the most typical example of “Swinging” London we’ve yet seen - lots of swirling colors and Go-Go-ish dancers. Pop and Piero are led by a HOST to a balcony overlooking the room. A SERVER follows behind carrying a bucket of Champagne. The Host seats them at a private table where two comely YOUNG WOMEN - dressed in skirts and Nancy Sinatra boots - are waiting for them. Mr. Bailey, Mr. Belafonte, may I introduce Robin- Ladies, England enslaved the people of Jamaica for over 200 years. I promised Mr. Belafonte we’d make it up to him tonight. Ted, Yoko and John Lennon are scrunched together in the booth, laughing. Empty cocktail glasses are spread out in front of them. .And I was out of my skull going ‘round talking to the people outside the concert hall, so I introduce myself as Jesus Christ to a square-looking stranger. And this stranger looks me in the eye and says, “Oh really, well- Buzzed, Ted mouths along with the quote: record . Lennon doesn’t notice. Ted and Yoko laugh. Lennon stands up from the table. Excuse me. I’ll be right back. Just need to say hello to some people. Lennon gets up and walks over to a group of other musician-types - Keith Richards, etc. People stare at him as he makes his way through the room. I like him. A little cynical, and before you got here he kept asking me to call him Dr. Winston O’Boogie. But I like him. I do think I could help him with his music, though. Don’t you think he’s already maybe got the music thing covered? He should be more raw. I think he needs to scream more. I thought you two might like to meet the family. Pop and Piero drink champagne with Robin and Charlene. You don’t sound like you do on your records, Harry. The girls wait for an explanation. Pop is clearly trying to silently will Piero to come up with something clever. And then, silence. Piero just stares at the girls, breathing heavily. Panicking. Sweating. Robin and Charlene seem perplexed by Piero’s complete lack of charm. Excuse us. I think we’re going to go dance. The girls head down the stairs towards the dance floor. From the balcony, Piero watches them go. Piero sees the POLICEMAN from the park dancing below on the floor. Piero gets up from his seat. Pop takes a bag of RED PILLS out of his pocket. He looks around to make sure nobody is looking, then pops a couple and washes them down with champagne. He leans back in his chair, getting stoned. The chauffeured Mini pulls up in front of a regal white building. Ted stares at it. Lennon and Yoko climb out of the back seat. Come on, lad. There’s work to be done. Lennon heads for the front door of a building, his arm around Yoko. Ted follows. Piero taps the Policeman on the shoulder, but the Policeman doesn’t want to stop dancing. INT. ABBEY ROAD STUDIOS, STUDIO TWO - SAME TIME Lennon leads Ted and Yoko into Studio Two, holy ground of rock & roll. Three musicians are inside tinkering around with instruments, working on a song that sounds like it belongs on the Sgt. Pepper’s . These are the Beatles - PAUL, GEORGE and RINGO. Gentlemen, may I introduce you to my dinner companions Yoko Ono and Mama Cass, also called Ted. The Beatles say their hellos. Ted shakes their hands, but doesn’t even try to speak. George seems suspicious of Yoko. Lennon grabs a guitar and joins his bandmates. Lennon becomes wrapped up in playing around with the band. Ted and Yoko are unsure what they’re supposed to do. If you’d like, there’s tea in the other room. Ted and Yoko get the hint. They head into the SOUNDBOARD ROOM, where a prim GEORGE MARTIN sits at the controls. Ted notices a cart with a KETTLE and TEACUPS next to George Martin. Ted looks around - Abbey Road, the Beatles on the other side of the glass, George Martin pouring him tea. Holy shit. George Martin hands him a CUP and SAUCER. Ted’s hands tremble as he takes a sip. INT. SCRAP HEAP NIGHTCLUB, BACK ROOM - SAME TIME A BOUNCER waves the Policeman and Piero through the door to a back room. The room is an OPIUM DEN. Blissed-out REVELERS smoke together. Men and women are openly amorous. In the center of the room is the MOTHERSHIP, which has been psychedelically painted. Beads hang over its open door. HASH SMOKERS greenhouse the interior. The Policeman points to a wall. It’s actually a GARAGE DOOR.
INT. ABBEY ROAD STUDIOS, SOUNDBOARD ROOM - SAME TIME Ted seems to have visibly relaxed. He drinks his tea and talks to Yoko, barely paying attention to the Beatles playing on the other side of the glass. Tomorrow I think I’m going to build a crying machine, if you want to help. It sheds tears every time a coin is deposited. INT. ABBEY ROAD STUDIOS, STUDIO TWO - SAME TIME From the other side of the glass, Lennon watches Ted and Yoko talking and laughing together. He’s distracted. He isn’t focusing on his music. He isn’t playing his guitar. You know the rules. No wives or girlfriends at the studio. George is right. We don’t need the distraction. The entire band has stopped playing their instruments. What does their body language look like to you? Lennon doesn’t like this. On the other side of the glass, Yoko signals that she and Ted are going to leave. Lennon puts down his guitar and walks into the Soundboard Room. It was good meeting you, Ted. Where are you staying? Piero and Pop sit next to each other in the back seat of the chauffeured town car. Piero seems depressed. A pity you were in such a hurry to leave. The girls wanted to give you another chance. You know, I always thought the reason I couldn’t find anybody good was the girls’ fault. But I’m starting to realize it’s me. I’m the problem. Forgive me for asking, but when was the last time you were actually with a girl? Dear God. I will help you, Piero. I will find somebody for you to shag. Ted and Yoko walk down the sidewalk. Ted pulls at the locked gates to a FOOD SHOP. Let’s go fishing in the Thames. I’ll make a line out of my skirt and you dig for worms. There’s food in the apartment where I’m staying. That might be easier. Yoko looks at Ted. He’s inviting her back to the apartment. Hmm . In the kitchen, Pop swallows down a few RED PILLS with a glass of water. He is stoned out of his mind. On the couch, he notices something RECTANGULAR and WHITE. He walks over to it. .It’s Piero’s iPod . Headphones and all. Pop puts on the headphones. He presses a button. The iPod lights up. He presses ARTISTS and fumbles through the choices. Finally, he chooses an artist - THE BEE GEES. EXT. OUTDOOR STAGE, AUSTRALIA - SAME TIME The young BEE GEES - BARRY, ROBIN and MAURICE GIBB are performing a song in front of a small crowd. Where is the sun. That shone on my head. The sun in my life. Suddenly - POOF! The Bee Gees disappear in a puff of smoke. INT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT - SAME TIME The Bee Gees listing DISAPPEARS from the iPod. A class of cute LITTLE GIRLS dance BALLET. One of the little girls, MADONNA CICCONE (8) is having a blast. She’s clearly more talented than the rest of the class. Petite, pretty Madonna goes up on her tippy toes. POOF! She disappears in a cloud of smoke. Little girls scream. The smoke drifts over the class. The Ballet Teacher stares through the smoke at where Madonna used to be. INT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT - SAME TIME The Madonna listing DISAPPEARS from the iPod.
Irate, Pop tries one last time, picking NIRVANA. INT. THE COBAIN HOME, ABERDEEN, WASHINGTON - SAME TIME Visibly pregnant WENDY COBAIN putters around her living room, talking to some FRIENDS. And if it’s a boy we’re going to name him Kurt. .and Wendy’s pregnant belly starts to DEFLATE. She stares down at her mid-section in disbelief, too shocked to scream. INT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT - SAME TIME The Nirvana listing DISAPPEARS from the iPod. Pop removes the headphones and tosses the iPod aside. He stumbles to his bedroom. INT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT, EXTRA BEDROOM - SAME TIME In the next room, Piero lies in bed staring at the ceiling. He can’t sleep. He looks at the clock. 2:30 in the morning. He flicks on the light. He looks around. Bundled in with Ted’s dirty clothing is Ted’s JOURNAL. Piero takes it and opens it. Piero flips to a random page and begins to read. I read today that giraffes only sleep half an hour per day. I wish I was a giraffe, because that way I’d have more time to play music and paint. Man. This is really what goes on in your head. CLOSE ON: The PAGE, where Ted has written the LYRICS to “Can’t Fight This Feeling [Anymore]” by REO Speedwagon: I can’t fight this feeling any longer And yet I’m afraid to let it flow What started out as friendship has grown stronger! I only wish I had the strength to let it show. Piero busts out laughing. Then, he hears the sound of the FRONT DOOR shutting. He puts the journal back. Piero hears the sound of female GIGGLING. He walks out to investigate and sees Ted and Yoko RAIDING THE FRIDGE. Ted walks over. Piero pulls him into the bedroom. INT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT, EXTRA BEDROOM - CONTINUOUS Yeah, that’s the only reason you brought her back here. There’s a difference between trying to keep John Lennon and Yoko Ono from meeting, and actively trying to seduce Yoko Ono. I’m not trying to do anything. We just get along. I found the Mothership. It’s in a nightclub garage being used as an opium den. I hung out with the Beatles at Abbey Road. From the street below comes the sound of a man SHOUTING. Ted and Piero walk into the other room, where they see Yoko standing on the fire escape, looking down at Carnaby Street. EXT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT - CONTINUOUS Lennon stands underneath the fire escape, looking up at Yoko. A small crowd of people watches the spectacle. A PHOTOGRAPHER snaps a picture of Lennon. Heaps of food back at the studio. There is a boar turning on a spit in the piano room. Ringo killed it with his voice. Yoko laughs. Ted joins her on the fire escape. I’m pretty sure you’d be Caesar in this case. Yoko nods and ducks through the window, back into the apartment. Ted, Piero and Pop are having a continental breakfast. There are two empty Bloody Mary glasses in front of Pop, and he is drinking a third.
Ah. The spring thaw after the long winter. I was the Beatles’ public relations man until John fired me. He was jealous I was seeing a bird he used to be with, and then I was gone. The other guys in the band didn’t try to stop him? They were happy to see me go. John is a good man, but he can get a bit paralyzed by jealousy. And when that happens, he stops playing music. Ted and Piero putter outside the cafe. Inside, Pop waits outside the bathroom. Ted and Piero are standing in front of a poster of JAMES BROWN with the caption: THE HARDEST WORKING MAN IN SHOW BUSINESS, LIVE! ONE NIGHT ONLY! NOVEMBER 17 IN HYDE PARK, LONDON. Ted points to the picture of James Brown. James Brown is the closest anybody in the sixties came to playing funk. That could be our way back. In 1966 I think he would still be considered R & B. In 1964 he released “Out of Sight,” which is considered one of the first funk singles.
Alright, well even if James Brown does count as funk, how do we get the Mothership to the concert? We have some time to figure that out. Where’s the club where you went with Pop? Pop exits the cafe, shaking his hands dry. Do you know anything about this James Brown concert? I’m promoting it. Last stop on his European tour. INT. ABBEY ROAD STUDIOS, STUDIO TWO - LATER Lennon isn’t at the studio. The three other Beatles stare down at a late edition of the DAILY MIRROR newspaper. The front page is a picture of Lennon staring up at Yoko on the FIRE ESCAPE, along with the headline: JOHN LENNON TURNS CYRANO LATE NIGHT ON CARNABY STREET. Yoko and Lennon are in Lennon’ townhouse, sitting in front of a reel-to-reel TAPE RECORDER hooked up to a MICROPHONE. They’ve been up all night. Yoko HOWLS into the microphone. Lennon runs these ‘vocals’ through the machine, creating overdubs. Lennon bangs together a pair of SHOES, adding this sound effect to the recording.
Lennon hits PLAYBACK on what they’ve done. It’s a mishmash of babbling dialogue and conceptual sound. I think it’s the best thing I’ve ever done. You needed to free yourself from the constraints of form. Lennon takes Yoko by the hand. He puts his arms around her waist and moves in to KISS her. Whatever he wants to buy, I’ll pay double. You’re sweet. But it would be rude for me to break an appointment. He’s just different. I have fun with him. He doesn’t think like anybody else. He makes me laugh. Let’s not do this, John. I consider you a good friend. Lennon deflates at the word ‘friend.’ INT. SCRAP HEAP NIGHTCLUB, BACK ROOM - SAME TIME Ted, Piero and Pop stand in front of the Mothership. The opium den is empty aside from some WORKERS cleaning. They are in the midst of a conversation with the NIGHTCLUB OWNER. The man who alerted me to it said that it had been abandoned in St. James Park. I won’t part with it. It’s an attraction. EXT. SCRAP HEAP NIGHTCLUB - MOMENTS LATER Ted, Piero and Pop stand outside the nightclub. I’m unclear why you want to take that thing to the James Brown concert. The ship runs on funk. James Brown is the closest you get to funk in 1966.
I’m sorry, but I don’t know what funk is. It’s a mixture of jazz and R&B targeted at the ass instead of the ears. Half the people I know say they’re from the future. It’s London. No. We need to come up with a plan for getting the Mothership out of there. Astronauts are normally in better shape, Piero. You don’t need to be an astronaut to be from the future. It doesn’t mean I would need to be a robot, either. Ted stands outside a dingy building, looking up. Yoko drops a key attached to a small PARACHUTE out of window. The key floats down to Ted. A spacious, cheap-looking workspace/apartment. Yoko’s installations are everywhere: A grapefruit in an aquarium labeled WATER/GRAPEFRUIT. A punching bag with the word OUCH written across it. Yoko stands over a damp cardboard box hooked up to a series of TUBES. Yeah, but every time it cries the cardboard gets wet and rips. It needs to at least be able to make it through a show. Too depressing. A machine that cries forever ? Think about it. You’re right. It’s better if it cries itself out and dies naturally. Yoko sips a cup of something. Ted notices she has dark BAGS under her eyes. She notices him looking. John and I didn’t sleep together, if that’s what you’re thinking. I told him that I just wanted to be friends with him. He’s a little clingy and out there. I’ve decided you’re more my type. I think you should make the crying machine out of egg cartons to handle the moisture.
INT. THE SCOTCH OF ST. JAMES - SAME TIME John Lennon is at his usual table, drinking hard alcohol in the middle of the afternoon.
You need to stop putting these schoolboy crushes above the band. You’re right, Paul. That’s exactly what I need to do - put aside what I feel about something so that I can rush back to the studio and listen to you rhyme go and know and car and star . Paul nods. Accepted. They’ve done this before.
The band seems less important than that, right now. I need some time to myself. Piero and Pop sit on the curb outside a construction site where an office building is going up. Sure. I’d love to hear what happens to me. I’m not kidding. You told me to give you a message. You said to lay off the reds. They’re bad for you. Pop’s face drops - how does Piero know about his pills? You also told me to tell you to sign Led Zeppelin. A stocky construction FOREMAN walks over to Piero and Pop. You the lads who were asking about a forklift? CLOSE ON: The CRYING MACHINE sitting in the center of a small candlelit dinner table. It is made out of egg cartons. Ted inserts a coin into it. It drips water. It looks sad.
You were right about the egg cartons. They’re more durable.
Yoko is preparing some absinthe. Yoko melts sugar in a spoon and stirs it into a glass of the green liquid. It doesn’t get serious until you have three or four glasses. We’re only having one. It’ll just make things a little brighter. They clink glasses. They drink. Ted is looking at something. Ted points to a long piece of CANVAS on which JAMES BROWN is written in psychedelic script. I’m making a banner for the James Brown concert. I tried to make the first banner out of cookie dough but it fell apart. CLOSE ON: A pile of cookie dough in the corner. INT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT, EXTRA BEDROOM - SAME TIME Piero slumps down on his bed, exhausted from the day. He picks up his iPod and puts on the headphones. He scrolls down to the BEATLES. He selects ABBEY ROAD. But something doesn’t seem to be right about the famous album cover. He leans in and looks a bit more closely at the cover.
In the picture, there are only THREE BEATLES walking across Abbey Road. Ted and Yoko are finishing a simple meal. They’ve switched from absinthe over to wine. I was born in Tokyo - my dad was a banker who wanted to be a pianist, and my mother came from a rich family. After the war we moved to America, and after I graduated from college, I went to New York City. I thought all the Hairy Who artists were from Chicago. That’s the first time we’ve mentioned art tonight. I try not to date artists, but I always do. My life is strange enough. I don’t need weirdness in my relationships. I just want people to be straight with me. Well, that’s probably because you haven’t been straight with me. Come on, I know who you are. Or who you aren’t, actually. Yoko walks over to her BOOKSHELF. She removes a thin ART SHOW CATALOGUE from the stacks, which she holds up to Ted. The catalogue’s title is THE HAIRY WHO: HYDE PARK ART CENTER, CHICAGO 1966. Ted is busted. I took a look to see what you painted. Turns out that there is no Ted Archer in the Hairy Who. You don’t seem as mad as you should be. At least you have good taste in your art collectives. I wanted to meet you. I didn’t know how else to break the ice. I’m a musician who works at a record store. I’ve always wanted to work in a record store. I’m flattered that you deemed me worthy of such an elaborate lie. I’d find something more air-tight if I had to do it again. You’ll see me tomorrow. But I’m penalizing you tonight. When I got to London, I lied about my credentials too. Ted starts to exit. Yoko pulls him back and KISSES him. He kisses her back, surprised. Then, they don’t say anything. Yoko waves. Ted exits. Ted enters the apartment, happy. Piero GRABS him immediately. A struggle ensues. Piero holds Ted down on the ground. Ted focuses on the iPod, which is clicked to the ABBEY ROAD album cover. There are still only three Beatles in the photograph, but now a couple of strange elements are also visible in the scene: There is a RAM in the foreground, and Paul is now carrying a ROSE in his mouth. Let me explain something. Right now, you are Yoko Ono. Piero clicks through the Abbey Road songs. Do you know what the first song on Abbey Road is now, instead of Do you know what comes next? Instead of Something ? One of the best songs ever written? Well, it’s apparently a new Paul song- Love , Love , Superlove (Rainbow) . With the word rainbow in parentheses. The iPod is probably just malfunctioning. No, Ted . The iPod is not malfunctioning . What’s happening is that you’re somehow changing history so that John ends up leaving the band too soon. And without John in the band to balance out Paul, Paul is about to hit his Wings stage too early. By preventing Yoko and John from getting together, you’re jeopardizing the albums the Beatles made in spite of them falling in love. Right now you’re saying that you’re willing to sacrifice albums loved by you and the rest of the world, for the sake of a girl. Face it. The plan backfired . Fix it. Ted looks at the small Abbey Road album cover on the iPod. The iconic image has been destroyed. Pop sits in a hotel room with JAMES BROWN, whose hair is being put in CURLERS by a STYLIST. MUSICIANS mill about in the hallway. James Brown keeps an eye on them through the open door. I’m pleased you arrived a few days early, James. There are still several issues pertaining to the concert to work out. All your backstage amenities have been handled.
But we unfortunately still haven’t been able to book an opening act. James Brown don’t go on cold. This ain’t the Apollo no more, baby. Ted stands across the street from the Indica Gallery. He looks like he hasn’t slept. Ted opens the door to the gallery. Yoko is inside cataloguing some slides. She glances at a clock on the wall. Ted and Yoko sit across from each other at the sidewalk cafe where they had their first lunch together. Ted barely touches his food. Then you’re breaking up with the chance of us being something good. Did you already know you were going to leave when you started hanging around with me? Well, we didn’t sleep together, so I don’t think this counts.
You should have given it a few more days. Then it would have counted. She means it. Ted tries not to show his disappointment. INT. ABBEY ROAD STUDIOS, STUDIO TWO - LATER Paul, George and Ringo are playing something that sounds like “Lovely Rita.” Lennon is nowhere to be seen. A SECRETARY walks up to George Martin in the Soundboard Room, holding a phone. It’s that lad Ted who John brought here the other day. MOMENTS LATER - Paul is inside the Soundboard Room, talking to Ted. He isn’t here. I’m afraid he has been rendered catatonic by the girl you had with you the other night.
Presumably, you can do something to fix this situation. The band doesn’t sound as good as a trio. Though it does offer me a bit more freedom. I’m going to try, but I need his address. Ted knocks on Lennon’ front door. A BUTLER answers. The Butler disappears inside the house. Ted looks over the imposing property. A Rolls-Royce is parked in the driveway. A GARDENER tends to the roses. The Butler reappears. I’m sorry. Mr. Lennon says he doesn’t know a Ted Archer. Tell him Mama Cass is here to see him.
Piero examines the LOCK securing the back garage of the Scrap Heap. He tries to cut it with a set of BOLT CUTTERS, but it’s too heavy-duty. Piero looks up and sees ANNA MILES (22) watching him. She is very pretty and wearing waitress clothing. Don’t worry. I don’t care if you’re breaking in.
I’m a waitress. But I hate it. I’m leaving as soon as I save enough money to get to America. I want to follow a band called the Velvet Underground. That’s impossible. Their debut album won’t be released until next year. I have a friend who works at a studio in New York who sent me a copy. I’m going to America to convince Lou Reed to kick Nico out of the band. Her vocals ruin “Femme Fatale.” She’s only in the band because of her looks, not her talent. Gold records on the walls. Expensive furniture. A white piano in the corner. Lennon is sitting up in bed, surrounded by empty food trays and liquor bottles. The discordant tape-to-tape music that Lennon and Yoko made together is playing in the background. Look. It was a bad idea for me to get between you two in the first place. I made a mistake. I want to fix this. Because I have a picture of you that I look at when I brush my teeth. INT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT, EXTRA BEDROOM - NIGHT Piero and Anna are sitting next to each other on the bed. A pair of wine glasses sit on the nightstand. INT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT - SAME TIME Ted listens to Piero and Anna’s conversation through the door. Pop sits on the couch reading the There is a KNOCK at the door. Pop looks through the peephole. He opens the door. Lennon is standing there. To what do I owe the honor of such a royal visit? Do you mind if I come in? If I go back outside I’ll be mobbed. In the BATHROOM, Pop stares down at two REDS in the palm of his hand. He is debating whether to take them. He drops them back in his drug bag and puts the bag in his pocket. In the MAIN ROOM, Ted and Lennon sit on Pop’s couches, drinking coffee. Lennon is chain-smoking. If you’re going to do this, you have to think like Paul. Straight-forward. Honest. Look, in your band, you’re the artistic one, while Paul writes the things everybody understands - “I Love You Girl”“You’re my girl”. Stuff about girls. You write “I am the Walrus.” The thing about Yoko is that her life is abstract enough - she’s a conceptual artist. She just wants somebody who can be straight with her. An ALARM CLOCK rings in a nearby room. Ted ignores it. Pretend that you’re Paul and tell her how you feel. Piero and Anna exit the BEDROOM, looking disheveled, and, in Piero’s case, triumphant. Ted, you and I need to go do that. thing. Piero drives the FORKLIFT down the road. Ted, Anna and Pop are stuffed into the passenger seat. But the reason the Beatles are great is that none of them think like each other. Underneath the artistic facade, Yoko is a simple girl who wants to know where she stands. She’s not a gold digger. She’s an amazing person. Isn’t there a rap song about a gold digger? Ted stares at Anna. He turns slowly to Piero. Jesus Christ, man. What have you been telling her? Everything. But it doesn’t matter. She’s coming back with us to Maryland. Piero appeals to Anna. She seems unsure about this. Ted uses a pair of BOLT CUTTERS to cut the PADLOCK on the Scrap Heap garage door. He and Piero slide open the door, revealing the MOTHERSHIP. Lennon sits on his bed, guitar in his lap, notebook open in front of him. Balled-up scraps of PAPER are scattered around the room. Lennon scribbles something in his notebook. CLOSE ON NOTEBOOK: The lyrics are familiar. yourself in a boat on a river, with tangerine trees and marmalade skies . Piero drives the forklift in the opposite direction, precariously carrying the MOTHERSHIP. Ted, Anna and Pop ride shotgun. Take a left up here. Hyde Park is just down the road. The Mothership TEETERS, and then CRASHES to the ground, whacking a steel FIRE EXTINGUISHER, which breaks on impact. Water gushes everywhere. Ted, Piero and Pop guide ANNA - who is operating the forklift - in picking up the Mothership. The forklift ELEVATES the Mothership. Anna winks at Piero. Lennon vacantly stares down at his empty notebook. He’s crumpled up all the sheets of paper, which are scattered in heaps everywhere. The forklift arrives in Hyde Park carrying the Mothership. The lawn in front of the STAGE is empty, aside from a small grouping of TENTS - concert-goers getting to the show early. On the stage. That way, everybody will think it’s part of the set. I can’t believe you’re letting us do this. What’s James Brown going to say about having the Mothership up there? James Brown is getting a double-handed MANICURE, tended to by a pair of WOMEN. A tired-looking Pop sits across from him. Spaceship ? Hell no. James Brown got nothing to do with no spaceships.
Kids here love anything with a space theme. It’s just a prop. Boy, James Brown is the only star in the sky tonight. Don’t talk to me about no space . What do I have to do to get you to keep it? INT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT - SAME TIME Ted is asleep on the couch, wearing yesterday’s clothes. The PHONE rings and rings. Ted’s eyelids flutter. The phone stops ringing. It starts again. Ted looks over at it. It’s not going to stop. Ted stands outside Lennon’ townhouse. The BUTLER opens the door and escorts him inside. Lennon is lying on the floor, stripped to his underwear. He is once again listening to the discordant tape-to-tape music he made with Yoko. He has scrawled abstract LYRICS on the WALLS and on his BODY. He looks like Howard Hughes. Big crowds are amassing in front of the stage.
Yoko is attempting to hang her James Brown BANNER above the stage with the help of a pair of STAGE HANDS. But it’s going to be hard to see because of that thing. What is that? It’s a spaceship. Mr. Brown requested it. INT. CARNABY STREET APARTMENT - SAME TIME Anna sits on the bed. Piero packs up his belongings - his velvet suit, an album, and a poster. There is tension in the room. They might have had a fight. “England’s Newest Hitmakers” by the Rolling Stones. Mint copy. It’s worth a lot. I like being alive. Traveling to the future seems a bit dangerous. But we’ve got great stuff in the future. Like. mobile phones that let anybody in the world contact you at any time. Everyone I know is here. My friends. My family. Even if we made it safely, chances are my parents would be dead when we arrived. I don’t think I could deal with that. The field in front of the stage is packed. A big crowd waits for the show. James Brown sits in his DRESSING ROOM. His hair is being worked on by a stylist with a professional PLASTIC-HOODED HAIR DRYER. On Pop’s signal, stage hands bring trays of DESIGNER SHOES into the room. Some leather. Some buckled. Some mod. Some casual. One-hundred and twenty-five pairs of shoes. You’re due to go on in less than an hour. Then you better start loosening those laces, Mr. Promoter Man. Yoko stands unhappily near the front of the stage, next to a few stage hands. She studies her hanging James Brown banner. It is crooked and difficult to see behind the spaceship.
Pop’s fingers are cracked and bleeding. He slides a pair of alligator loafers onto James Brown’s feet. James Brown looks down at the shoes, satisfied. Then, Pop’s ASSISTANT taps Pop on the shoulder. INT. HYDE PARK BACKSTAGE, HALLWAY - MOMENTS LATER The opening act cancelled ? I’ve never heard of such a thing.
The lead singer of the band we booked had a bit of an. episode, it seems. James Brown won’t go on without an opener. This is a disaster. Pop turns to look at Ted, who is standing behind him, holding an ELECTRIC GUITAR. Ted nods to John Lennon, who is looking over a batch of hastily scrawled LYRICS. Piero and Anna stand somewhere in the middle of the crowd. They can just see the Mothership on stage. I guess I’ll just push my way up front when the show starts. It might be easier if you push your way up now. If you’re in Maryland in a few decades, I’ll take you out to crab cakes. Whenever I eat crabs I feel like I’m eating aliens. I don’t like them either. I just eat them because everybody else does. Piero pushes his way through the crowd towards the stage. His eyes are wet. Ted peeks out from behind the stage at the massive crowd. He turns to Pop. The stage hands typically watch the show from the railing stage left.
Ted takes another look at the crowd and sees Yoko behind a metal railing in front of the stage. Lennon and Pop make eye contact. They’re cool with each other. Pop signals to a TECHNICIAN controlling the LIGHTS. The lights go down over the crowd. Pop clicks the ON button on a MICROPHONE. Pop’s voice rings out of LOUDSPEAKERS on every side of the stage. .On behalf of the Hyde Park and Terence Bailey productions, please give a warm hand to. Ted Archer! I’ve waited my whole life to hear that. Nothing to worry about, mate. You’re a terrific musician. It’s the most important thing anybody has ever said to Ted - validation for everything in his life. He takes a deep breath and walks onto the stage. Ted makes his way to the microphone. He nods to Yoko. She is stunned to see him on stage. Ted stares out at the biggest crowd he’s ever seen. Applebees, this is not. The crowd alternately waits for him to say something, and shouts at him about the show: James Brown!. Get off the stage, wanker! Hello. Man, there are a lot of you. I’m Ted. I was going to play some of my songs, but a. friend of mine asked if he could play something new. You see, my friend is supposed to be with a girl who’s here tonight. She’s right there, actually. Ten thousand people crane their necks to look at Yoko, including Piero, who is standing a few feet away. James Brown is listening to Ted’s speech. He turns to his BASSIST. tonight to wake the people up after this bullshit. Gonna have to make these mothers dance .
.And having her stuck in this crowd is maybe the only way to make sure that she’d stay and listen. Lennon walks out of the wings. He takes a seat at the PIANO. After a moment of shock, the crowd ROARS. Lennon speaks into the microphone. A friend of mine told me that I needed to be more direct with the people I love. So, here you go, Yoko. Lennon starts playing the piano. It’s a familiar melody. Then Ted comes in on the guitar, and there is no doubt about what Lennon is playing: “Can’t Fight This Feeling (Anymore)” by REO Speedwagon.
I can’t fight this feeling any longer! And yet I’m still afraid to let it flow. What started out as friendship has grown stronger! I only wish I had the strength to let it show. It’s time to bring this ship into the shore Ted solos on his guitar. It’s sweet. He looks over at Lennon, who nods, impressed. Ted shakes his head, disbelieving. Lennon finishes out the song. Cause I can’t fight this feeling anymore! I’ve forgotten what I started fighting for! And if I have to crawl upon the floor! Come crushing through your door!Baby, I can’t fight this feeling anymore. Lennon plinks the final piano notes. The song is over. Lennon hops from the stage and walks over to Yoko. That was the cheesiest thing I’ve ever heard. Lennon leans over the partition and KISSES Yoko. Huge approval from the crowd. Ted watches from the stage, a little bummed. And then, there is a HAND around his microphone. He looks over and sees JAMES BROWN. James Brown’s band are taking their places. You want me to play guitar. For you. James Brown. Go hard tonight. That spaceship runs on funk. You already invented it with “Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag” and some other songs. Just emphasize the one-three beats instead of the two-four.
That’s what I’m saying. Give it up or turn it loose. Ted spots Piero at the front of the crowd. He motions at him. Let’s go. Piero climbs over the railing. SECURITY GUARDS step in. Holy shit. I didn’t know you could do that. I saw somebody bootlegging the show. You’re a part of rock history. Say that again. My ears are still ringing. A guy was bootlegging the show. People were taking photographs, writers were scribbling in their notebooks - this is a real thing. Ted gets a strange expression on his face. I’ve never been a part of something people would remember. Tonight mattered. This is it. This is all I ever wanted to feel. Ted looks at James Brown waiting in the wings. He looks at John Lennon, still kissing Yoko Ono. This is the best moment of his life. James Brown stands with his back to the audience. His Bassist introduces him. Are you ready for Star Time?! Mr. Dynamite! The Hardest Working Man in Show Business! Mr. James Brown ! The band launches into “Papa’s Got a Brand New Bag.” Ted and Piero reach Pop. They shake his hand. Thanks for everything you’ve done for us. Of course. And thank you for the business advice. Piero nods, sheepishly. Ted shoots him a look. From the stage, we hear a low, throbbing BASSLINE. Ted and Piero creep on stage to the Mothership while James Brown’s band plays. They check the ship’s engine. It is steadily filling with PINK GOO. Drip. Drip. They open the Mothership’s door. Ted takes a final look at John Lennon and Yoko Ono, who are in the front row of the crowd. Lennon has his arms around Yoko, pulling her close. Lennon and Ted make eye contact. A mutual thank you. Piero looks at ANNA, who has also made her way to the front of the stage. She has a sad smile on her face. She waves goodbye to him. Piero looks at Anna. He looks at the Mothership. He looks back at Anna. I’m staying here. I want to be with Anna. There’s nothing for me back in Maryland. My job is terrible. My entire family lives in Peru. Women hate me. As long as you promise to be there when I land. I’ll need a ride. I’ll be the fat senior citizen in the wheelchair. You’re going to age terribly. You’re already falling apart. Piero holds his iPod up to Ted. The Abbey Road cover has been fully restored. Four Beatles. Ted climbs into the Mothership. Piero shuts the door behind him. Piero climbs offstage and walks over to a stunned Anna. He kisses her.
I guess this means you’re stuck with me. Ted powers up the ship. He sets his destination coordinates to Maryland. He sets his destination time back to when he left. Ted pushes down on the EMERGENCY BRAKE. The Mothership starts to tremble ferociously. Rivers of blue electricity run over the Mothership. It just makes the James Brown band play harder. Ted holds on to his seat. Then, comes the familiar PAUSE, followed by a wild SURGE OF ACCELERATION. The Mothership BLASTS through the ROOF of the Hyde Park stage. James Brown and his band duck and dive to get out of the way of the falling wood and lights. The music stops. In a flash of LIGHT, the Mothership DISAPPEARS into the night sky. After a moment of shocked silence, the crowd ROARS its approval. Pop looks at the streak of light in the sky. He takes his bag of REDS out of his pocket and drops them in the TRASH. No more drugs. On stage, James Brown stares at the spot the Mothership used to be. He’s impressed. With a tremendous CRACK, the Mothership CRASHES through trees into the middle of the Suitland Parkway Woods. The DOOR opens and Ted crawls out. He collapses onto the ground, trying to get his wind back. No response. He looks at the Mothership. It is smashed and battered. It’ll never be used again. Goddammit, Piero. I told you to pick me up. Ted walks along the side of the road, hitchhiking. He looks like hell. Nobody gives him a ride. A TAXI pulls up in front of SPINNAKER RECORD SHOP. Ted climbs out and gives the driver a few loose dollars and POUND NOTES he has in his pocket. The driver looks down at the money, perplexed. The store looks exactly the same. A pony-tailed HIPSTER stands behind the cash register. Ted clearly doesn’t know who this guy is. About time you got here. My shift is over. There’s a box of blues records that need to be scanned into the system. Other than that, it’s been slow. Ted is all alone. He looks around the store. Nothing is different. Beatles posters. Radiohead. The Modern Lovers. We see a BEE GEES poster on the wall. A NIRVANA poster hangs nearby. It seems rock history has worked itself out after all. He bends down to open the box of blues records, when he spots something at the bottom of a LED ZEPPELIN IV poster. He leans in close to look at it: A BAILEY/CHACON RECORDING CORPORATION RELEASE Ted walks over to a small shelf filled with rock biographies. He takes a BEATLES BIOGRAPHY off the shelf. He opens it and flips through the PHOTOGRAPHS in the middle. He stops abruptly on one of the photos. It’s a PICTURE of him on stage with John Lennon. He reads the caption: A photo from the evening John and Yoko began their romance. The performance of “Ted Archer” that night, and his subsequent disappearance, remains a legendary part of rock and roll history. The DOOR opens. PIERO (early 70s) and POP (late 60s) enter the store. Both of them are dressed in stylish suits. Pop looks great. Piero looks good, but he’s put on weight. We hit traffic coming down from New York. You got even fatter than I thought you would.
Come on. The limo is waiting outside. I’ve got a record contract for you to sign. You’re shaking your head. You must have suffered brain damage during the trip- The door opens AGAIN. This time it’s JESSICA who walks into the store. She’s pissed. You missed the real estate interview I set up for you! You made me look like an idiot! Ted’s not working real estate. He’s coming to New York to sign a record contract. This is insane. What, did you get Piero’s grandfather to dress up like a bigshot to make me think you were going somewhere with this music thing? Let’s go. Maybe I should do this one person at a time. Jessica. A lot happened recently. I don’t expect you to understand, but I’ve learned something. I’ve learned that you suck. You suck so, so hard. You never supported me doing the things I love. You made me think you were the only person who would ever want me. You told me to get a job you knew would make me miserable, just so you’d save face in front of your friends. But I love this store and I’m staying here, and if that’s not enough for you, you can go. Well then. Goodbye, Ted. Good luck being poor. Bye, Jessica. You made me feel bad right up until the end. Jessica exits the store. Ted, Piero and Pop watch her go. I’ve waited fifty years to see you do that. Ted thinks about what he’s going to say. When I was playing with John, I looked over at him and thought, there is a guy who operates on a different level than the rest of us. And in that moment, I realized something - I’m a better fan than I am an artist. I mean, I’ve written a few songs, but none of them have been spectacular. And the older the get, the more I realize that my satisfaction in life comes from having these songs. Ted gestures to stacks of records all around the store. .In my life. This place makes me happy. For as long as I can remember, I wanted to be part of something bigger than me. And now I kinda think I am. I felt something I always wanted to feel, and I think that might be enough. I don’t need anything else. How about we at least buy you the store so you can work better hours. And the building next door. I want a separate jazz room. INT. TED ARCHER’S RECORDS - WEEKS LATER The sign for Spinnaker Records has been removed. A new one has been put in its place - TED ARCHER’S RECORDS. The WALL has been knocked down between the main store and the place next door. Drywall and bits of wood are everywhere. It’s a construction site. Sheets of plastic protect the records in the main store. Ted works side-by-side with Piero and Pop, who are still strong workers. Ted stops hammering. He turns around to see YUKO (20s), a pretty Japanese girl. Great. I didn’t want to mess with the plastic. Maybe you can help me find something. I’m looking for the Green Vinyl pressing of And as Ted leads Yuko to a stack of records while Pop and Piero look on.


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