unrealized scripts

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

The Shrimp Boater: a work in progress

Tagline: "He's Got a Bucket For a Hand"

Synopsis: Crotchety old shrimperman develops a fantastic new video game about shrimp-boats. He loses touch with his roots and alienates all his friends. He dies craggy and alone and on top of a gigantic pile of money made from his amazing video game.

The first ninety minutes will be a stereotypical story of an old salty seadog, seeking redemption and understanding and sympathy and all that. At the end there'll be like eight minutes about the video game and how popular it becomes and how rich he gets and how dissolute and perverse he becomes all that shit. Then he dies and is buried with his billions of dollars. The End.

Treatment: Hiram tugs slowly on the rusty chain, pulling the bucket up from the fjord's floor. He pours the water and sediment through a strainer and sifts through the rocks and weed. Once again the bucket came up dry; once again the wily shrimp have eluded old Hiram. Hiram scratches his cheek with his nub and squirts a jet of black fluid out of the side of his mouth. Harvest time is almost over, and Hiram's shrimp-tank lies almost empty.

They're all gone now. Blizzy, Fatback, Tsetse, Firpo, even the old ball and chain and that damn crying baby, all up and gone and fled to bluer waters. Waters where the skies smile bashfully and the shrimp skitter head-first into buckets with limitless joy. All except for the missus, who's probably still being eaten by these very same shrimp Hiram's failing to wrangle. Probably why they're such assholes.

Light's almost lost and the wind is picking up; time for Hiram to head in. It's been a long, fruitless day, and the comforts of his warm bed lay enticingly in Hiram's head like a ham hock at a dogtrack. In time sleep will come, and in time those shrimp shall be his, if only in the secret alcove of his slumbering mind.

While dreaming Hiram catches a first glimpse of his startling future. He sees a typical American family sauntering into a Dave and Buster's. The two children gleefully run towards the video arcade, passing the horse-racing game, the Star Wars simulator, the virtual reality pterodactyl battles, and even the life-size video-golf chamber. They head straight to the greatest video game experience ever devised, Shrimp-Boat: Buckets of Shrimp. The kids dump buckets of tokens into the game, playing until their intestines unload in all possible directions. There's a line of future shrimp-boaters that extends past the front door, through the parking lot, and into the Hardee's next door, winding concentrically throughout the restaurant and ending inside the broken stall in the men's room. Yes, Shrimp-Boat is truly the most popular video game of all time, and all Hiram has to do is somehow develop it.

Hiram awakes in a cold sweat. The dream has revealed to him his destiny.

The next morning Hiram sets straight to work. He somehow develops the fantastic new video-game about shrimp-boats. Later that afternoon Dave buys Hiram a gold-plated helicopter, while Buster dumps a truck full of cash on his bed and fulfills his every sexual fantasy. Within minutes all three men are naked and glistening, with hundred-dollar bills stuck to the fluids that coat their entire bodies. Hiram's friends, hearing of his success, return to make amends, but Hiram turns them all down, and returns to his cash- and shrimp-fueled homosexual orgy. After collapsing into a giant quivering mass, Hiram and Dave and Buster fall blissfully into sleep. Before Hiram can begin another prophetic dream, his poor li'l heart gives out, and the lucky old shrimp-boater passes on with a massive smile on his face and a Sacajawea dollar stuck to the tip of his penis. And through it all, he had a bucket for a hand.


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  • At 5:53 AM, Blogger ice said…

    This is perfect. I can see Gus Van Sant doing a good job with it.

  • At 10:35 AM, Anonymous JG said…

    Great job, Dark. I see this being a lot like Kids, Inc., for some reason.
    I'm a little curious about something, though. What does this mean: "the comforts of his warm bed lay enticingly in Hiram's head like a ham hock at a dogtrack"?

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    jesus christ dont click on the JG link. not only did i puke but i also got fired.

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