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Monthly Archive for November, 2011

Movies You’ll Never See/Empires of Crime/Part 13


*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13

*Heywood Gould is the author of 9 screenplays including “Rolling Thunder,”Fort Apache, The Bronx,”Boys From Brazil”and “Cocktail.”


EMPIRES OF CRIME /Part 13

By Heywood Gould

ACT 7 Cont’



INT. BRIDAL SUITE. DAY.

Anne is standing forlornly by the window as the door bursts open. Esther Siegel, rushes in.

        ESTHER
Annie, whaddya mopin’ on
this beautiful day?

        ANNE
I was supposed to go for
a ride on the boardwalk
with my new husband.
What do the boys do when
they run off with each
other?

        ESTHER
I don’t care what Benny does
as long as he don’t stink of
cheap perfume when he comes
home. C’mon, there’s a Saks
in this town just like the
one on Fifth Avenue..


INT. CONFERENCE ROOM. DAY.

Meyer is selling hard.

        MEYER
We got enough power to
create a Syndicate that’ll
be bigger than any
corporation in the country.

        CAPONE
Who do you think you are,
Henry Ford? You’re a bandit.
You steal from the suckers,
you steal from the feds. A
guy gets in your way you
take him out…

        MEYER
That’s a good description of
Henry Ford, Al.

        CAPONE
Only Henry Ford don’t hit
guys with pipes.

        CHARLEY
He don’t have to. And neither
do we. It’s time we stopped
killin’ each other and
started lookin’ at this
business the way other
guys look at their’s. We
negotiate, we make deals.
We don’t look over our
shoulders when we go home
at night.

        MEYER
Instead of fightin’ let’s go
in partners.

        BERNSTEIN
How do we do that?

        MEYER
We set one price for liquor.
No one is allowed to sell
booze out of his territory,
no one is allowed to undercut
the other guy’s prices.

        CHARLEY
No hijackin’ or musclin’ in..

        MEYER
We organize bookmaking. You
got fifteen, twenty thousand
independent bookies takin’
action every day. We give
them a central spot financed
by the Combination where
they can lay off their bets.
We guarantee their action
and in return we take a
piece. We’re the house, we
win big.

        CHARLEY
Only time we lose is when
we fight among ourselves.

        MEYER
We got wide open towns where
you can own the Chief of
Police for a fifty dollar
bill. Newport, Kentucky,
Hot Springs, Arkansas,
Phoenix City, Alabama…

        CAPONE
Hick towns…

        MEYER
We’ll put’em on the map.
Build big,classy places
where we own the liquor,
the bands, the knives and
forks, even the toilet paper.

        CAPONE
What about side action? Drugs, Casa di toleranza…

        CHARLEY
(translating)
Whorehouses for our American
friends.

        MEYER
To me a whorehouse is a
waste of good real estate.
Drugs is a big risk for a
small market.

        CHARLEY
But we’ll let our members
make side deals on any
proposition…

        MEYER
As long we have some rules
we all abide by…

        LAZIA
Like what?

        MEYER
Like publicity for one.
Gettin’ your picture taken,
gettin’ your name in the
columns.

        CHARLEY
It makes our policemen friends
look bad. Makes it tough for
our politicians to get elected.

        MEYER
We can’t kill cops or reporters.

        BENNY
How about killin’ our own?

        MEYER
It’ll come up,let’s face
it. And when it does we
put it to a vote.

        DALITZ
Just like throwin’ a guy
off the Board of Directors,
huh Meyer?.

        MEYER
Yeah. If you wanna kill me
one day, Al you’re gonna
have to get the okay from
these nice fellas.

There is a moment of silence as Capone ponders his response. Then, he smiles and wraps his arm around Meyer.

        CAPONE
Why would I wanna hurt a hair
on your head? You’re gonna
make me rich.

        MEYER
Or die tryin’…

The others laugh and add their approving voices. “Where do I sign?” “Count me in,” etc. The room breaks into handshakes and mutual congratulations…

INT. RESTAURANT. DAY.

In a back room, Charley nurses a glass of wine and watches with quiet distaste as Masseria gorges himself.

        MASSERIA
I hear you made yourself
big boss in Atlantic City.
CHARLEY
I walked outta that meeting
with a piece of every liquor
operation in the country…For you
(offers a fat ENVELOPE)
This is just the beginning.

Masseria takes the envelope with a greedy look.

        MASSERIA
How much you give that
son of a whore Maranzano?

        CHARLEY
Not as much as I give you,
I swear on my mother…

        MASSERIA
You earn for me, Charley.
You got a nice American
personality. All the big
Broadway types like to buy
their booze from Good Time
Charley. But there are
jealous people making
plans against you. When you
need protection and your
Broadway pal Ziegfield
can’t help you. And the
great Maranzano won’t lift
a finger. Who will you
come crawling to?

        CHARLEY
(grabbing Masseria’s hand)
You, Don Giuseppe. I kiss
your hand. I swear eternal
loyalty.
(offers another envelope)
Please take my share as well.
Out of respect and gratitude…


INT. CAR. DAY

A DRIVING RAIN pounds the windshield. We get a dim view of a sign reading GENNARO’S RESTAURANT. Charley Workman sits behind the wheel, watching the street. He sees:

CHARLEY

stepping out of the restaurant… FOUR MEN rush out of a car and grab him. Charley slugs one of them and tries to run, but two BIG HOODS block his path. His arms are pinned. He is punched in the stomach. As he doubles over a blackjack is brought down hard on the back of his head. And he is dragged away, unconscious.

CHARLEY WORKMAN

jumps out, drawing his gun . But a MAN wielding a PIPE steps out of a storefront and blind sides him, knocking him down.

INT. BACK SEAT. DAY

Charley is thrown into the back, his head bouncing off the seat. A GLOVED HAND pulls his head back..

        VOICE
Big shot…

CURTAINS are drawn around the windows. The car speeds away.

END PART ONE & TWO


Next: PART THREE/Part 14/Act 1 (Monday, Dec. 5)

In a new department the Daily Event will reoffer some of these scripts. Read them and decide: would you like to have seen this movie?

Our first script is EMPIRES OF CRIME. Seven years in development it is a six part mini-series commissioned by a broadcast network and later reacquired by a cable station.

The story is about the founders of Organized Crime, Meyer Lansky, and “Lucky” Luciano, their fifty year partnership and the empire they created. Their friendships and families, lives and loves. It is also about their implacable enemy Thomas Dewey, a young Republican attorney who built a political career prosecuting the Mob that propelled him to the NY Governor’s Mansion and almost to the White House.

*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13.  Use Contact Us, above, for submissions.

Movies You’ll Never See/Empires Of Crime/Part 12

*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13

*Heywood Gould is the author of 9 screenplays including “Rolling Thunder,”Fort Apache, The Bronx,”Boys From Brazil”and “Cocktail.”

EMPIRES OF CRIME /Part 12


By Heywood
Gould

ACT 7


EXT. EL FAY’S. DAY

In broad daylight, a TRUCKER is unloading cases of BEER, while his HELPERS roll them into the club. VINCENT “MAD DOG” COLL,a wild eyed Irish gangster crosses the street with his CREW.

        MAD DOG
Get lost. Maranzano’s supplyin’
this joint.

        TRUCKER
(squaring off)
This is a Dutch Schulz
territory.

        MAD DOG
Not anymore.

Mad Dog draws a gun and pistol whips him down. The Trucker’s helpers run to his aid, guns drawn. Coll and his crew start shooting, spraying the truck,the beer, the helpers.  BYSTANDERS run screaming for cover.

A LITTLE GIRL

is shot. Her FATHER tries to shield her and is also hit.

MAD DOG

drags a WOUNDED TRUCKER into a car and speeds away.

INT. US ATTORNEY’S OFFICE. DAY

A BULLETIN comes off the POLICE TICKER…FIVE SHOT ON BROADWAY OUTSIDE SPEAKEASY…A SECRETARY tears off the sheet and brings into an office where Tom Dewey sits behind a mountain of paperwork.

INT.CHARLEY’S BEDROOM. DAY

Gay Orlova is lounging languidly on Charley’s yellow silk sheets. The PHONE RINGS. Charley comes out of the dressing room, resplendent in a golfing outfit—knickers, high socks and two toned golf shoes.

        GAY
You look like somethin’
out of Esquire magazine,
Charley.

        CHARLEY
I’m goin’ golfin’ with
Walter Chrysler. He’s
puttin’ up a big office
buildin’ and he wants me
to help with the unions…
(picks up the phone with a
wink at Gay)
Luciano residence…Hiya
Meyer, guess who I’m goin’
golfin’ with…Yeah, yeah,
I’ll be right there.
(slams down the phone)
You believe these crums.
I’m tryin’ make a business
out of this thing and
they’re runnin’ around
blastin’ little girls…


INT. MEDAILLIE’S OFFICE. DAY.

Tom, quivering with indignation, confronts Medaillie.

        TOM
A five year old girl was
killed instantly. Her
father is in critical
condition. All this took
place in front of El Fays,
a known speakeasy frequented
by mobsters and celebrities
and operating in flagrant
violation of the law! We
need more manpower, George.
How can we expect people
to take us seriously if we
can’t protect them on the
streets?

        MEDAILIE
One of the last things
Rothstein did was to get
our Republicans in
Washington to cut our
funding.

        TOM
We can get it back. This
is our chance, George. We
can use this to mobilize
public opinion. Press
conference, radio coverage.
Cause an uproar. If we can
make an arrest in this case
the tide will turn.


INT. DUCORE’S BACK ROOM. DAY

DUTCH SCHULZ, stocky, sloppy in a cheap suit, a borderline psychotic is ranting at Meyer and Benny.

        SCHULZ
Your guys are too rough,
Dutch, you said. Keep’em
off Broadway. We’ll take
care of your operations.
But you didn’t so I took
over.

        MEYER
And you shot a five year
old girl, Now Dewey’s
gettin’ a posse after us…

        SCHULZ
It’ll blow over like it
always does.

        MEYER
Dewey’s gonna splash that
little girl’s funeral all
over the paper. He’ll make
a big name for himself and
then he will be a problem.


Charley enters,impeccable in a dark suit.

        CHARLEY
Thought I gave orders, nobody
from the Bronx was allowed in.
What’s with the cheap suit,
Dutch? A man in your position
oughta dress the part.

        SCHULZ
Only queers wear silk shirts.

        BENNY
You oughta know…

        CHARLEY
C’mon we’re all friends here.
We told ya we’d handle your
beefs in Manhattan, Dutch.
Why the gunplay?

        SCHULZ
That greaseball Maranzano is
tryin’ to take my spots in
the Bronx. He hired this
Irishman, Mad Dog Coll,
Guy’s been shootin’ up my
joints…

        BENNY
And you been shootin’ back.

        SCHULZ
Whaddya expect? Mad Dog’s
snatchin’ my collectors.
Beats the crap outta them,
hangs ‘em from meat hooks
and holds ‘em for ransom.
I’m at war with this guy,
Charley.

        CHARLEY
And you’re bringin’ heat
down on the whole
organization.

        SCHULZ
Who’s gonna bother us? We
run the city.

        CHARLEY
Only as long as nobody
knows we do. We got the
Mayor, the DA and the
Commissioner, but they can’t
help us if we’re on the front
page blastin’ each other. Now
you gonna listen to your Uncle
Charley?

        SCHULZ
If I like what I hear.

        CHARLEY
Tell us which one of your
marksmen hit that little
girl. We slip his name to
our cops. He’s killed
resistin’ arrest.
(offers his hand)
Case closed?

        SCHULZ
You get Maranzano off my
back?

        CHARLEY
Deal.

They shake.

INT. MARANZANO’S OFFICE.DAY.

A luxurious suite overlooking Park Avenue. Seated in a thronelike chair behind a mahogany desk, a HOOD lights Maranzano’s cigar as another HOOD pours demi tasse.

        MARANZANO
So business is good?


Charley produces an ENVELOPE bulging with cash.

        CHARLEY
Very good.

        MARANZANO
(beaming)
You’re a good earner.

        CHARLEY
Because of your good decisions,
Don Salvatore. I’ve watched
and I’ve learned as you built
up this organization. But if
I could respectfully offer a
suggestion…

        MARANZANO
Go ahead my friend.

        CHARLEY
Ease up on Dutch Schulz for
awhile.

        MARANZANO
Salvatore, my gumbare Tom
Gagliano controls the
Bronx for me. This animal
Schulz burns out our spots,
kills our people on the
street.

        CHARLEY
He’s nuts. We all know
we’re gonna have to do
somethin’ about him. But
startin’ a war is the
wrong way.

        MARANZANO
You know the Pax Romana,
Salvatore? The Roman legions
killed all their enemies and
ruled conquered territory
with an iron hand. And there
was peace in the world for
five centuries.

        CHARLEY
With respect, this ain’t
Rome. In America the public
rules.

        MARANZANO
(points out of the window)
You mean those frightened
people running to get out
of the rain?

        CHARLEY
Yeah, them. See they let us
live because we give ‘em
what they want. But we
start shootin’ little girls
they’ll howl for our blood.
A thousand guns and all the
money in the world won’t do
us no good. Sit down with
Schulz. Make a deal, you can
break it later on.

        MARANZANO
You’ve gone soft in your
Waldorf Astoria penthouse
with your fancy friends,
Salvatore.

        CHARLEY
I’ve got a position to
protect. I can’t solve
my problems on the street.
Neither can you.

        MARANZANO
(negotiating)
I won’t lower myself to sit
down with your animal Schulz.
But I will call off my Irish
mad dog. If you return the
favor.

        CHARLEY
Fair enough.

        MARANZANO
This pig Masseria: He shouldn’t
breathe the same air that I do.

        CHARLEY
I got some boys who can
take him out nice and
quiet…

        MARANZANO
Not quiet. Not with poison
or a garrotte, but with a
gun so the world can see
he has been executed. And
not by a killer with no
name. I want it to be
known that you, one of his
lieutenants, have done
this with the approval of
his soldiers.

        CHARLEY
So you can come in later
like it wasn’t your idea.
Albert Anastasia works for
Masseria. He can do it.

        MARANZANO
It must be you, personally,
Salvatore.

        CHARLEY
I know the rules in our thing.
Kill a boss you can’t take
his place.

        MARANZANO
The man who sits at my right
hand will have incredible
power. But only I can be the
boss of all bosses…

        CHARLEY
(rising)
I kiss your hand, Don
Salvatore, I give you all
my respect, but I won’t
lower myself to be your
hired killer.

        MARANZANO
You defy me? You present
yourself as my equal?

        CHARLEY
This is America, Don Salvatore.
All men are equal here.


INT. CATERING HALL. DAY.

Meyer’s wedding day. The GUESTS applaud as Meyer in tie and tails and Anne, radiant in a white bridal gown take the first turn around the dance floor.

AT CHARLEY’S TABLE

A PHOTOGRAPHER moves in for a picture as Genovese and Anastasia snarl at each other.

        ANASTASIA
You got three whore houses
by the docks…You think I
don’t know?

        GENOVESE
Whores are a separate
business…

        CHARLEY
You guys are makin’ millions
runnin’ booze and you’re
goin’ to war over a two
dollar cathouse…


He applauds vigorously as Meyer and Anne dance by.

        COSTELLO
Hey Annie I got a car waitin’
if you wanna change your
mind….

        CHARLEY
Annie, I haven’t gotten a
chance to know you yet, but
if you could trap this night
owl you must be one hell of
a woman.

Everybody laughs. Charley puts his arm around Meyer.

        CHARLEY
But this guy… I gotta say
there is no more finer or
more loyal friend on earth
than Meyer Lansky. I trust
this man with my life. And
I know you can, too.

        MEYER
Thanks, Charley. That means
a lot to me.


As they hug, Benny slips in and lifts the envelopes out of Meyer’s pocket. Everybody laughs as he runs away.

        MEYER (CONT’D)
Hey, somebody call a cop.

EXT. ATLANTIC CITY BOARDWALK. DAY.

A balmy, May afternoon. TOURISTS stroll past THE PRESIDENT  hotel.

INT. BRIDAL SUITE. DAY.

Sun drenched. Strewn with gifts and flowers. Meyer is on the couch reading the paper. Anne, tousled and dreamy in a white negligee, sneaks up and puts her hand over his eyes.

        ANNE
Guess who…

        MEYER
Pola Negri? Mary Pickford?
Oh, it’s little Annie
Citron, the grocer’s
daughter.

There is a loud KNOCK on the door. Outside we hear:

        BENNY
This is the house detective.
Do you have a woman in
there?

Laughing, Meyer opens the door and Benny comes bursting in.

        MEYER
What are you doin’ here?

        BENNY
I came down for the weekend
with Esther. Look who I
found pickin’ pockets in
the lobby…


Charley enters, respectfully, hat in hand.

        CHARLEY
What a coincidence, huh.

        BENNY
We’re gonna steal the
blushing groom away for
a second. Give him some
pointers…

        MEYER
(kisses Annie)
I won’t be long…


INT. HOTEL CORRIDOR. DAY.

Charley, Meyer and Benny walk quickly down the corridor.

        CHARLEY
Capone’s here..

        MEYER
Ricca and Guzik are the
brains behind the Chicago
mob, Charley…

        CHARLEY
Yeah, but Capone’s the balls.

        BENNY
How you gonna con these
hardheads into making you
boss?

        CHARLEY
Just like AR said: Give
‘em a good proposition.
Then step back and hope
they don’t kill each other…

They walk past a BEEFY HOOD into:

INT. CONFERENCE ROOM. DAY.

It looks like a gathering of prosperous businessmen, amiable, well-dressed. They are grazing around a buffet table stocked with plates of cold cuts and bottles of premium whiskey.

        CHARLEY
Gentlemen, having a good time?

AL CAPONE, stocky and moonfaced, responds:

        CAPONE
Where’s the broads, Charley?

        CHARLEY
I gotta play Cupid for Al
Capone? Meyer, make the
introductions.

Meyer steps to the table. CAMERA PANS where he points.

        MEYER
This, of course, is Al
Capone, the boss of
Chicago…Over here,from
Boston, we got King Solomon
who’s as wise as his name.
Lou Rothkopf–all the
showgirls call him Uncle
Louie–from Cleveland, along
with, Moe Dalitz and Chuck
Polizzi. Joe Bernstein from
Detroit, Commodore of the
Little Jewish Navy, bringing
all that premium liquor down
from Canada. Nig Rosen from
Philly,the City of Brotherly
Love, we hope. My good friend
Longie Zwillman from Newark.
John Lanzia, representing Mr
Prendergast in Kansas City.
Frank Erickson and Benny
Siegel from New York along
with Mr. Buchalter from the
Garment Center. And I’d like
to thank our host, Mr. Nucky
Johnson, a very influential
man here in Atlantic City…

        SOLOMON
It’s nice that you’re pickin’
up our rooms, Charley. But
what do we gotta do for you?

        LUCIANO
Well, for openers, you can
stop shootin’ each other.

END ACT SIX

Next: Part 13/Act Eight: Board Meeting (Wednesday, 11/30/11)

In a new department the Daily Event will reoffer some of these scripts. Read them and decide: would you like to have seen this movie?

Our first script is EMPIRES OF CRIME. Seven years in development it is a six part mini-series commissioned by a broadcast network and later reacquired by a cable station.

The story is about the founders of Organized Crime, Meyer Lansky, and “Lucky” Luciano, their fifty year partnership and the empire they created. Their friendships and families, lives and loves. It is also about their implacable enemy Thomas Dewey, a young Republican attorney who built a political career prosecuting the Mob that propelled him to the NY Governor’s Mansion and almost to the White House.

*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13.  Use Contact Us, above, for submissions.

MOVIES YOU’LL NEVER SEE/Empires Of Crime/Part 11

*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13

*Heywood Gould is the author of 9 screenplays including “Rolling Thunder,”Fort Apache, The Bronx,”Boys From Brazil”and “Cocktail.”

 

EMPIRES OF CRIME /Part 11    


By Heywood
Gould

ACT 6


EXT. STREET.NIGHT.


Charley hits the street and walks down the block to a SHINY BLACK PIERCE ARROW. Charley Workman jumps out and opens the rear door. Charley slides in and finds:
INT.PIERCE ARROW.NIGHT. Masseria is in the back seat, his cigar glowing in the dark.

       MASSERIA
What does he want?

       CHARLEY
Rothstein’s business.

       MASSERIA
What did he say about me?

       CHARLEY
That you’re a thief.

       MASSERIA
You were smart to tell me
you were going to meet him.

       CHARLEY
I told you because I knew
you would find out.

       MASSERIA
And you will tell me
everything.

       CHARLEY
I’ll be your spy, Don
Giuseppe.

       MASSERIA
And you will get rid of
Rothstein.

       CHARLEY
We don’t have to kill AR.
All we have to do is scare
him a little.


EXT. EL FAY’S. NIGHT

Rothstein emerges with a TIPSY SHOWGIRL, who can’t stop giggling. He slips a few bills into the Doorman’s pocket.

       ROTHSTEIN
Get me a cab, Barney. I’m
gonna take this little
buttercup home.

At that moment a SEDAN speeds by.. IN THE SEDAN (CROSSCUT) Charley Workman leans out and rakes the club with a TOMMY GUN. Windows shatter and everyone ducks for over. Rothstein’s Tipsy Showgirl goes into hysterics. He crawls over and tries to calm her…

INT. LO CHEN’S. NIGHT.

An opulent brothel. Silk curtains and lacquered tables. WOMEN in kimonos lounge at the entrance A chubby MADAM leads Meyer down a narrow hallway. He knocks at a door..

       MEYER
Charley…

INT. ROOM. NIGHT.

Small. Just enough room for a bed and a table. Luciano is sitting on the bed playing Gin Rummy with a half naked CHINESE GIRL. He slams down his cards.

       LUCIANO
Gin! She’s a great lay but
a lousy card player…

       MEYER
AR’s been callin’ around town.
Wants to see us.

        CHARLEY
(suddenly all business)
I threw a coupla shots at him
tonight…Benny’s in the next
pew…

Meyer steps out into the hallway and walks a few steps to the next door. He enters to find:

BENNY being massaged by a CHINESE WOMAN. On the bed a BLONDE lies in a stupor, an OPIUM PIPE dangling between her fingers.

         BENNY
I must be seein’ things.
(with a stoned out chuckle)
You wouldn’t have a piece of
apple strudel on you…

Meyer sniffs in disgust.

         MEYER
Jeeze Benny, you got a pregnant
wife at home. Besides, anybody
could come and blow your brains
out.

         BENNY
Now, who’d wanna do that to
a nice guy like me?

         MEYER
AR wants to see us right away.

         BENNY
You and Charley go. Anything
you decide is okay with me…

He passes the Chinese girl an OPIUM PIPE.

         BENNY
Light me up, honey…


INT. ROTHSTEIN’S STUDY. NIGHT.


Charley and Meyer sit in the shadows watching Rothstein unlock a cabinet and remove a file.

         ROTHSTEIN
Once a month I go down to DC.
There’s a guy there, Harry
Daugherty. He was Harding’s
Attorney General and he’s
still the bag man for the
Republicans. Meet him in the
Mayflower Hotel. Fifty G’s in
hundreds. As long as the
Republicans are in office
they’ll never repeal
Prohibition. Once in awhile
he’ll come to New York. Show
him a good time.

         CHARLEY
What kinda girls does he like,
fat, skinny, white, black or
yellow?

         ROTHSTEIN
He likes boys…

         CHARLEY
Fat, skinny…White, black..?

         MEYER
Are you sure you wanna get
outta the business, AR?

         ROTHSTEIN
Oh yeah. Tonight was the
capper for me. I’m a nice
Jewish boy from Park Avenue.
I like to make a phone call,
send an envelope and
everything’s jake.I don’t
wanna wake up one morning
with a bullet in my gut.
The Italians, Masseria,
Maranzano. You know these
guys?

         CHARLEY
I’ve heard of ‘em.

         ROTHSTEIN
They’re tryin’ to muscle in.
I thought I could pull strings,
but tonight they started
shootin’.

         CHARLEY
They were just tryin’ to scare you.

         ROTHSTEIN
It worked.I don’t wanna
live in a world where the
gun closes the deal. Pay
me twenty five cents on
the dollar and the liquor
business is yours.

EXT. ROTHSTEIN’S TOWNHOUSE. NIGHT

As Charley and Meyer walk away.

         MEYER
So who we gotta pay off?

         CHARLEY
Both of them.

         MEYER
Masseria and Maranzano. That
was your brilliant scheme?

         CHARLEY
I’m a threat to these guys.
I gotta keep makin’ money
for them or they’ll kill me.
Trust me, Meyer, we’ll have
it all one day.

INT. CHARLEY’S LIMO. DAY.

A sparkling, Spring morning. Workman drives down a country road, while Charley sits in the back reading the “funnies.” They turn onto a long gravel driveway, past a sign reading JOHN J. RASKOB

         WORKMAN
What do these guys want with
us?

         CHARLEY
Raskob owns the Empire State
Building. Maybe he’s got a
union beef. Remember the
address. We’ll come back
later and hit the house.

INT. DINING ROOM. DAY

Jimmy Hines walks Charley over to a lavish buffet.

         HINES
They asked me to bring the
most powerful people in town…
You were the first guy I
thought of.

Mayor Jimmy Walker offers a smile and a glad hand.

         MAYOR WALKER
Hey Charley…

         CHARLEY
Gonna give us a song, Mr.
Mayor.

He is astonished when CARDINAL DAUGHERTY, Archbishop of New York, steps out of a private room.

         HINES
Have you met Cardinal Daugherty?

         CHARLEY
(kisses Daugherty’s hand)
Your Eminence. My mother’s never
gonna believe that I had breakfast
with the Archbishop of New York.

         DAUGHERTY
Bring her to mass at St.
Patrick’s. We’ll sit her
in the front row.

         HINES
This is Mr. Raskob, our host.

         RASKOB
Welcome, Mr. Luciano.

         HINES
And here’s the guest of honor,
the next President of the
United States, Al Smith…

Smith, an exuberant Irishman with a thick New York accent. pumps Charley’s hand.

         SMITH
Thanks for gettin’ up so early.

         CHARLEY
I ain’t been to sleep yet.
Why am I in such illustrious
company?

         HINES
It’s time we put a Catholic
in the White House, Charley.
We need your help.

         CHARLEY
Smart money’s bettin’ on
Franklin Roosevelt to get
the nomination.

         RASKOB
Roosevelt is a menace to
all we stand for. He may
come from a prominent family,
but he’s got the Communists
behind him.

         SMITH
I’m a Catholic and a big city
politician. I gotta convince
the party I can win.

         CHARLEY
You gotta get out the vote.
You gotta pay off a lotta
people and you gotta rough
up the Roosevelt side

         HINES
Nobody does that stuff better
than you, Charley.

         CHARLEY
Why should I help you,Governor?
You been runnin’ around for
four years sayin’ you’re gonna
repeal Prohibition.

         HINES
Al’s a New York boy, Charley.
One hand washes the other.
You help him win, he’ll keep
the cops off you. Smith is
silent, but he nods his
confirmation.

         CHARLEY
Al Smith for President.

INT. DUCORE’S BACK ROOM. NIGHT.

Cigarettes glow in the shadows. Workman stands guard at the door as Charley, Meyer, Benny and Costello huddle over NEWSPAPER where a BANNER HEADLINE proclaims; DEWEY DECLARES WAR ON THE MOB.

         COSTELLO
They couldn’t find nobody
for the job so they plugged
him in. I called around.
This guy won’t do business.

         CHARLEY
(examines DEWEY’S PHOTO)
Dewey. I met this kid.
He’s definitely got a
grudge.

         MEYER
I don’t like these dark
horses lookin’ to make a
reputation.

         BENNY
He’s just another shyster with
no juice. Why are we worryin’?

         MEYER
‘Cause we worry about everybody.
Let’s keep him busy, give him
Waxey Gordon. We been lookin’
to dump him anyway.

         CHARLEY
How you gonna do it?

         MEYER
I own two IRS guys in Philly.
We’ll give them information
on Waxey and they’ll pass
it to Dewey. He’ll never
know where it came from.

         BENNY
That’s a dirty trick even
for us.

         CHARLEY
Anything else before we join
the ladies?

         COSTELLO
Rothstein’s tryin’ to make a
big bet on the election.
He’ll lay five hundred G’s
for Hoover over Al Smith,
but he can’t get nobody to
take his action.

         MEYER
Smith doesn’t have a chance.
Have you heard him on the
radio?

         BENNY
The guy sounds like he should
be rollin’ beer barrels on
Hudson Street.

         CHARLEY
Smith has a lotta Catholic
money behind him. I think
he’s gonna take it. Book it,
Frank. Do it through our
guys in Midtown so AR don’t
know it’s us takin’ his
action.

         MEYER
AR only bets sure things,
Charley.

         CHARLEY
So do I.


EXT. WALDORF ASTORIA (STOCK)

New York’s “swankiest” hotel.

INT. CHARLEY’S PENTHOUSE SUITE. NIGHT.

Election eve. The SKYLINE twinkles outside the picture window. Marinelli, Hines. Anastasia and Genovese are in a crowd of giggling PARTY GIRLS. The Broadway crowd is at the piano where Mayor Walker is singing. As the girls gather around him he raises his glass to a blown up CAMPAIGN PHOTO of AL SMITH. WALKER Here’s to the next President of the United States, the Happy Warrior, Al Smith. Everyone cheers. “To President Smith…”

INT.CHARLEY’S BEDROOM. NIGHT

Meyer is on the phone. Charley sits by the radio with a stony look as:

         ANNOUNCER
Although returns from the
traditionally Republican
West and Far West have not
come in yet it is clear
that Al Smith has failed
to capture the big city
vote…

         MEYER
That was Costello. AR’s been
callin’ our bookie for his
money.

         CHARLEY
Tell the guy to say final
returns ain’t in yet. I
ain’t payin’ off on a race
when the horses are still
in the far turn.

         MEYER
The cowboys ain’t gonna vote
for this guy, Charley. Better
get that five hundred G’s up.
You’re a loser.

         CHARLEY
Not yet I ain’t.

INT. HOTEL ROOM. NIGHT

A high stakes poker game. All the PLAYERS have huge PILES OF CHIPS in front of them except for Rothstein who is hastily scribbling an I.O.U.

         ROTHSTEIN
Okay deal. Here’s my marker.

         DEALER
Two hundred thousand bucks
is a lot of money, AR.

         ROTHSTEIN
I can cover it. I’m collecting
on a big bet tonight.

A BOUNCER hangs up the house phone.

         BOUNCER
That was the desk. There’s
a guy downstairs to see ya…

         ROTHSTEIN
(getting up)
Deal me in, I’ll be right
back with the cash…


INT. PARK CENTRAL HOTEL BACK ENTRANCE. NIGHT.

A man in a dark overcoat waits in the shadows. Rothstein comes down the stairs. His face lights up.

         ROTHSTEIN
Hey, what are you doing here?

The man draws a gun and shoots Rothstein twice in the stomach. With an astonished look, Rothstein crumples to the floor.

INT. PARK CENTRAL BACK ENTRANCE. NIGHT.

A short time later. A dying Rothstein is being taken away on a stretcher. A DETECTIVE leans over him.

         DETECTIVE
Tell us who did it, Arnold.
We’ll get even for you.
Rothstein shakes his head with a feeble smile.

         ROTHSTEIN
You work your side of the
street, I’ll work mine.


INT. ROTHSTEIN’S BILLIARD ROOM.

NIGHT SHADOWS flit through the darkness. A FLASHLIGHT illuminates a safe as someone grasps the handle and pulls it open. CHARLEY is revealed in the light, removing black notebooks, papers. He turns to Charley Workman, who is holding the flashlight.

         CHARLEY
It’s all here. Who ships the
booze. Who fixes the races.
Who pays off the politicians.
Who’s the bag man for the
cops. We got the dirt on
everybody… We’re gonna be
the big fixers now.


END ACT SIX

Next: Part 12/Act Seven: In dutch (Monday, 11/28/11)

In a new department the Daily Event will reoffer some of these scripts. Read them and decide: would you like to have seen this movie?

Our first script is EMPIRES OF CRIME. Seven years in development it is a six part mini-series commissioned by a broadcast network and later reacquired by a cable station.

The story is about the founders of Organized Crime, Meyer Lansky, and “Lucky” Luciano, their fifty year partnership and the empire they created. Their friendships and families, lives and loves. It is also about their implacable enemy Thomas Dewey, a young Republican attorney who built a political career prosecuting the Mob that propelled him to the NY Governor’s Mansion and almost to the White House.

*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13.  Use Contact Us, above, for submissions.

MOVIES YOU’LL NEVER SEE/Empires of Crime/Part 10

*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13

*Heywood Gould is the author of 9 screenplays including “Rolling Thunder,”Fort Apache, The Bronx,”Boys From Brazil”and “Cocktail.”

 

EMPIRES OF CRIME /Part 10 By Heywood Gould

ACT 5 (Con’t)

EXT. BROADWAY. NIGHT (STOCK)

The Great White Way. Theaters, bustling crowds. A MARQUEE reads: GEORGE WHITE’S SCANDALS

INT. THEATER. NIGHT.

In the crowded Standing Room, Tom is watching ecstatically.

ON STAGE

Frances playing a very demure ingenue, is singing:

        FRANCES
He married the girl/
With the strawberry curl/
And the band played on…

In the chorus, Gay Orlova twirls her parasol and winks at Charley, who is sitting in the front row with Charley Workman, applauding vigorously and whistling between his teeth.

INT. BACKSTAGE. NIGHT.

After the show. Tom, clutching a SMALL BOUQUET is buffeted by a wave of SHOWGIRLS, STAGEHANDS, FANS. He asks:

        TOM
Where can I find Miss
Frances Hutt?

Suddenly he is shoved face first into the wall by Charley Workman, carrying a huge FLORAL PIECE. He is followed by TWO HOODS with armfuls of ROSES and bringing up the rear of this regal procession is Charley Luciano…

        WORKMAN
Make way for the King…

His bouquet crushed, Tom watches as Charley walks by, trading jokes with the onlookers. “Hey Charley, enjoy the show?”

        CHARLEY
I oughta, it’s the tenth
time I seen it.

        CHARLEY
You twirl a parasol better
than any broad I ever seen…

        GAY
Did you like it, Charley.
Was I better than last
night?

        CHARLEY
I’ll tellya tomorrow morning.

Everybody laughs except Tom who is disgusted by this ribaldry. Then, Charley hands a dozen roses to Frances.

        CHARLEY
Here y’are, kid. Sweets
to the sweet as Mr.
Barracini says.

        FRANCES
You’re a sweetie yourself,
Charley. Oh look, there’s
my boyfriend. Tom, say
hello to Charley Luciano…

        CHARLEY
(offers his hand)
Hey Tom, got quite a
gal there. Don’t take
her outta circulation
before I can make her
a star.

Tom grabs Frances by the arm.

        TOM
Let’s go.

        CHARLEY
Just offerin’ my good wishes,
pal. Every pretty girl needs
a little help.

         TOM
Not from you. Don’t even
let her name come out of
your dirty mouth.

Charley bridles, but controls himself.

         CHARLEY
Maybe you think I’m a
disreputable character.
But every human being
deserves respect.

         TOM
You’ll get what you deserve.
I’ll see to that.
(pulls Frances)
Let’s go, Frances.

She says a quick “good bye” as Tom pulls her out of the room. Workman starts after him, but Charley restrains him.

         WORKMAN
You gonna let that bum
talk that way to you?

         CHARLEY
Ah, he’s just jealous…

EXT. STAGE DOOR ALLEY.NIGHT

Tom tries to hustle Frances away.

         FRANCES
Stop being such a prig,
Tom. People like Charley
make this town run. He
may not be refined, but
he’s a gentleman in his
own way.

         TOM
He’s a pimp, a murderer,
a dope peddler, a cheap
extortionist gouging the
last pennies off the poor
people of this city. And
I’m gonna prove it to you,
Frances…

INT. JUDGE’S CHAMBERS. DAY

JUDGE McCOOK, stern, elderly, administers the oath of office. Tom repeats with a grimly determined look.

         TOM
I swear to uphold and
enforce the laws of the
State of New York without
fear or favor.

END ACT FIVE

ACT SIX

FEBRUARY 1927


INT. THEATER. NIGHT

NEWSREELS… Cops step over the bodies of slain gangsters. ST. VALENTINE’S DAY MASSACRE…AL CAPONE walks out of a courtroom waving to the reporters…Anne is watching in horror, while Meyer munches popcorn.

         ANNE
That Capone is a monster.

         MEYER
He just don’t want nobody
peddlin’ booze in his
territory.

INT. FAT AL’S. NIGHT.
Meyer and Anne are greeted by a HOOD.

         HOOD
Evening, Mr. Lansky.

         ANNE
How come they call you,
Mr. Lansky?

         LANSKY
‘Cause if they called me
Mr. Steinberg, I wouldn’t
know who they were talkin’
to.

         GAMBLER
Hey Meyer, I got a live
one here. Says you can’t
do the chip trick.

A sleek HIGH ROLLER waves a fistful of bills.

         HIGH ROLLER
A G note says you can’t
do it.

         MEYER
For a G note I can do
anything.

Anne is shoved aside by the excited crowd. The STICK MAN throws chips in a bucket. Meyer turns his back to the table. The Stick man dumps them on the table.

         MEYER
Thirty one…

The Stick man counts the chips and looks up in amazement.

         STICK MAN
Thirty one..

The crowd cheers…”The guy’s a magician…” “He can tell by the sound…” “Better not try to cheat in this joint…”
CHARLEY
pushes his way through the crowd.

         CHARLEY
Hey did I miss the floor
show?

A desperate BEDRAGGLED GIRL accosts him.

         BEDRAGGLED GIRL
Charley, Little Davey won’t
let me outta the room to see
my mother. He keeps bringin’
guys in.
(pulls up her dress))
He burned me with cigarettes…

LITTLE DAVEY BETILLO, grown into a vicious ferret of a man, runs up and pushes her away.

         BETTILO
Don’t fall for that sob
story, Charley. She was
holdin’ out…

Anne is mortified. She turns and runs out.

         CHARLEY
Whatsa matter with her,
she sick?

Meyer catches up to her in the lobby.

         MEYER
Annie, wait.

         ANNE
You said it was just a
night club.

         MEYER
It is. See anybody who
isn’t having the time
of their life?

         ANNE
That girl is a prostitute.
That place is vicious and
depraved.

         LANSKY
Gimme time. Next year I’ll
have it all cleaned up and
legal. I’ll be a respectable
businessman…

         ANNE
My father would never set
foot in a place like this.

         LANSKY
Tell your father I own a
garage. I’m up to my elbows
in grease all day long. Tell
him I love his daughter and
I’m gonna make her rich and
happy if she gives me a
chance…

         ANNE
I’m not the kinda girl
that gets a cheap thrill
out of goin’ to places
like this, Meyer.

         LANSKY
I don’t like that kinda
girl, Annie. I like you.

Annie relents and allows him to kiss her.

         ANNE
I like you, too, God
help me.

INT. BANQUET HALL.NIGHT

A HUNDRED ITALIAN RACKETEERS have gathered to pay homage to SALVATORE MARANZANO, a tall, imposing, mustachioed man dressed in an old world black suit. Frank Costello stands at Maranzano’s right hand, applauding his every utterance. In the crowd Genovese explains to Charley.

         GENOVESE
It’s Salvatore Maranzano. The
bosses in Palermo sent him to
get into the booze business.
He’s got big Sicilian money
behind him.

         MARANZANO
(a heavy accent)
We come into America like
Julius Caesar came into
Gallia. Vini vidi vinci.
I come, I see, I conquer….

The men applaud enthusiastically. Charley looks at Costello “Is this guy nuts?” Costello shrugs as Maranzano continues in stentorian tones.

         MARANZANO
In America the races mix,
but the race that maintains
its purity will conquer the
others. It is for this that
we will admit no foreigners,
to our inner circles. We
will maintain our codes of
morality in this immoral
country. We will not seduce
the wife or daughter of a
brother, will not steal from
a brother, nor cheat him,
nor fight among ourselves.
We will organize in groups
of ten as did our Roman
ancestors. Every group will
have a captain, from the
decime or ten, through the
hundreds and the thousands.
At the top will be the man
of unquestioned authority,
the Boss of All Bosses…
Me…

Enthusiastic applause and shouts of acclamation. The Racketeers line up to pay tribute, kissing Maranzano’s hand, slipping him envelopes. Genovese is the first in line with the biggest smile and the fattest envelope.

INT. COFFEE HOUSE. NIGHT.

Dark and narrow, SMOKE hanging in the air, murmuring voices. In a corner Charley and Maranzano confer in terse whispers.

       MARANZANO
I can tell a lot about
a man from where he
comes from, Salvatore.

       CHARLEY
I’m from Freggia, Don
Salvatore, where black
clouds of stinkin’ smoke
cover the sun. My old man
burnt his lungs out in the
sulphur mines. Between the
Mafiosi and the aristocrats
he couldn’t get a break so
he came to America

       MARANZANO
Join with me and you
will return to your town
as a conqueror. Our men
of honor have great wealth
and are welcome in the
best homes in Sicily.

       CHARLEY
I got nothin’ to prove
in the old country. I’m
happy here.

       MARANZANO
You are respected and well
liked among the younger
men. I want you to sit at
my right hand.

       CHARLEY
You want me to bring my
boys into line, that’s
what you want. But I got
a lotta Irish and Jewish
with me. We do things
American style.

       MARANZANO
So we will be the
invisible hand that
makes the puppets move.

       CHARLEY
American boys won’t jump
for you like the paisans
do.

       MARANZANO
Then they will fall like
the barbarians fell before
the Roman legions. I can
bring five hundred men here
tomorrow to kill anyone who
sets up as my enemy. Do you
doubt me?

       CHARLEY
No. But as you know I’m
with Don Giuseppe Masseria…

       MARANZANO
Masseria has not been
responsible to his
friends in Sicily.

       CHARLEY
You mean he hasn’t been
kickin’ back enough and
that’s why you’re here.
Okay, I can blow with
the wind. But don’t go
to sleep on Joe. He’s
smart and he’s established.

       MARANZANO
So we go slow. No need
to let him know about
our…friendship…We
build our power. This
Jew Rothstein has a
flourishing whiskey
business, but no
soldiers to protect him.
He should be easy to
eliminate.

       CHARLEY
AR’s power is based on
favors and connections.
He makes money for a
lotta people…

       MARANZANO
He walks alone, no men
around him. A man like
that is either so powerful
no one can touch him. Or
so stupid he deserves to
die…

       CHARLEY
AR’s been square with me.

       MARANZANO
I respect your loyalty to
your bosses. But Rothstein
has no guns. Masseria has
stolen from his brothers
in Sicily. He, too, is
doomed. What is in your
future, Salvatore?

Charley kisses Maranzano’s hand.

       CHARLEY
My future is with you,
Don Salvatore…

Next: Part 11/ACT Six: (Wednesday, 11/23)

In a new department the Daily Event will reoffer some of these scripts. Read them and decide: would you like to have seen this movie?

Our first script is EMPIRES OF CRIME. Seven years in development it is a six part mini-series commissioned by a broadcast network and later reacquired by a cable station.

The story is about the founders of Organized Crime, Meyer Lansky and “Lucky” Luciano, their fifty year partnership and the empire they created. Their friendships and families, lives and loves. It is also about their implacable enemy Thomas Dewey, a young Republican attorney who built a political career prosecuting the Mob that propelled him to the NY Governor’s Mansion and almost to the White House.

*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13 (Calendar at right.) Use Contact Us, above, for submissions.

MOVIES YOU WILL NEVER SEE/Empires of Crime/Part 9

*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13

*Heywood Gould is the author of 9 screenplays including “Rolling Thunder,”Fort Apache, The Bronx,”Boys From Brazil”and “Cocktail.”


EMPIRES OF CRIME /Part 9
By Heywood Gould

ACT FIVE

INT. DISTILLERY. NIGHT.

A maze of gleaming VATS and PIPES. Meyer walks through, with FRANK COSTELLO.

        MEYER
See, we cut out the
middleman. Make the
booze ourselves.

        COSTELLO
But what’s it gonna taste
like?

        MEYER
Who cares? After two
drinks they can’t tell
the difference.

They walk through a door into a distillery into a WHOLESALE BAKERY. BAKERS in whites, pull breads out of huge OVENS.

        MEYER
We had to open this
bakery to hide the
smell of the alcohol.
So now we’re in the
bread business. We
just need one thing.

        COSTELLO
Money…

        MEYER
Sugar. Can’t make alcohol
without it. The government’s
watchin’ all large sugar
transactions. We need a
supplier who’s not afraid
of the feds…But I think
I found one.

        COSTELLO
Who?

        MEYER
Me.

EXT. EL FAY’S. NIGHT.


A Broadway speakeasy. A LIVERIED DOORMAN welcomes FLAPPERS and their COLLEGE BEAUS, WALL STREETERS in top hats, LADIES in gowns and JEWELS. LARRY FAY, the proprietor, in his signature outfit, black suit, black shirt, purple tie, glad hands everybody.

        FAY
C’mon in, the party’s just
startin’.
(snatching a FLASK out of a
college kid’s hand)
You won’t need that,
professor. We got plenty
in there.


A CONVOY of TAXIS rolls to the curb. The Doorman rushes to open the door and gasps as BABE RUTH gets out accompanied by a BEVY of BROADWAY BEAUTIES.

         DOORMAN
Larry, it’s Babe Ruth..

         FAY
The Bambino himself. You got
three cabs goin’ tonight,
huh Babe.

         RUTH
Yeah, one for the girls.
One for the booze. And
one for Benny.


Benny Siegel, in a white top coat and fedora gets out of a third cab with more SHOWGIRLS.

         DOORMAN
(awed)
Hey, it’s Bugsy Siegel.

         FAY
Better not call him Bugsy
to his face…Mr. Siegel,
welcome to my humble abode.

         BENNY
Yeah, you don’t mind that
we brought our own liquor,
Larry. We don’t want the
Babe gettin’ poisoned on
your rotgut.

         RUTH
Hope you’re closin’ at noon,
Mr. Fay. I got a game at
one o’clock and I’ll need
at least an hour to sober
up…


INT. EL FAY’S. NIGHT.

A lavish, glittering nightclub. A CHORUS LINE is doing a wild CHARLESTON. Everything is festive and luxurious, but the CUSTOMERS are all drinking out of COFFEE CUPS.

AT A CORNER TABLE

Charley, dapper in a tux with his customary yellow and black handkerchief is seated with GAY ORLOVA,a blonde bombshell of a showgirl. Behind him stands his bodyguard, CHARLEY “THE BUG” WORKMAN. Next to him is Jimmy Hines, the former block captain, now a Tammany big shot.

ON THE BANDSTAND

The spotlight shines on JIMMY WALKER, a baby faced Irish tenor, singing his hit song:

         WALKER
Will you love me in December/
As you did in May/Do you
swear to remember/The vows
you made today…


AT CHARLEY’S TABLE

Hines leans over with a smile.

         HINES
That’s Jimmy Walker our
next Mayor.

         CHARLEY
That warbler?

         HINES
Yeah. Charley Murphy heard
him sing and made him a State
Assemblyman. People like him.
When he gets in we’ll
be runnin’ the city.

         CHARLEY
I don’t wanna run it,
Jimmy. I just want a
piece of it.


TEXAS GUINAN

blonde and brassy in a low cut gown sparkling with sequins, comes on stage, blowing a POLICE WHISTLE and banging on a wooden CLAPPER. She throws a SPOTLIGHT on the crowd.

         TEXAS
How’s your coffee, suckers?
The audience cheers its
approval.

         TEXAS
Better keep spendin’ or
I’ll shut the lights and
send the girls home.


The crowd laughs. One very drunk MIDDLE AGED MAN jumps up and stuffs bills down the chorus girls’ cleavage.

         TEXAS
That’s the spirit. And
now look what the wind
blew in… The Babe
himself. See you brought
your trainers with you,
huh Babe?


The spotlight follows Ruth, arm in arm with two girls. He waves to the cheering crowd.

         TEXAS
Fellas, watch your wives,
Ben Siegel is in town…


Now the spot pans to Siegel, surrounded by girls. Behind him two HOODS push a WHEELBARROW full of bottles. They go around the room, putting a bottle on every table.

         TEXAS
Drinks on you, Ben?

         BENNY
Everywhere I go, Texas.


The band starts, the girls come out. Benny passes, Charley’s table with no sign of recognition.

         TEXAS
Hey Ben, like you to
meet an old pal of mine,
Broadway Charley…


Charley rises in the spotlight and the two exchange handshakes and “pleasure to meet ya’s…”

         TEXAS
Say hello to Charley’s
enamorata, Ben. Miss Gay
Orlova. She’s wowin’ em in
the Scandals and when that
closes, Charley’ll back her
in any show she wants to do,
won’t ya Charley?


Charley kisses Gay on the cheek.

         CHARLEY
Anything the little lady wants.


The band starts and the dancers crowd the floor, but a worried Larry Fay pushes through the crush to Charley’s table. Then, in a groveling, pleading manner:

         FAY
Charley, Benny’s killin’ my
business, bringin’ his own
liquor into the joint.

         CHARLEY
So buy from him.

         FAY
I can’t. I gotta deal with
Big Bill Dwyer in Brooklyn
or he’ll burn me down. He
comes every night to check
on me…


BIG BILL DWYER (CROSSCUT)

Thick and florid and bulging out of his tuxedo, is sitting at a table with some of his henchman.

         CHARLEY
Brooklyn? Ain’t they still
got Indians there?

         FAY
C’mon Charley, nobody does
nothin’ in this town without
your personal okay…

         CHARLEY
Hey Larry, you’re blockin my
view.


Fay has been dismissed. He backs away without another word.

         HINES
I know what you’re thinkin’,
Charley. Big Bill runs the
Brooklyn docks, Charley.
He’s got an army around him
at all times.

         CHARLEY
I just wanna give him the
name of my tailor. He
needs his tux taken in.


INT. KITCHEN. NIGHT.

Yetta Lansky has a linen napkin over her face and is blessing the Sabbath candles. Meyer and his girlfriend ANNE CITRON, a homely but spirited brunette hold hands under the table as Yetta finishes the blessing and Max pours the wine.

         YETTA
You should be honored, Anne.
You’re the first girl Maier
ever brought home…

         MEYER
She’s the first girl I
ever took out, Mama…

         ANNE
(poking him)
Oh yeah, tell me another
one.


They stop as Max says the blessing over the wine.

         YETTA
He’s a good boy, my
Maier. Comes home every
Friday night


They stop again as Max says the blessings over the bread.

         YETTA
(ladling the soup)
I got a nice boiled chicken…

         MEYER
My mom boils everything.
I brought a turkey home
once and she tried to
boil it.

         YETTA
Who knows from turkeys?
In the old country we
had geese and ducks and
capons.We would have ten,
for Shabbas dinner. My
husband had a store.
Beautiful fabrics…

         MAX
Fabric from all over the
world, even from India
and China.

         YETTA
Meyer’s doing very well
with his garage business
for a boy who didn’t even
go to high school.

         MEYER
My mom’s still mad about
that.

         MAX
What does your father do,
Anne? If may I ask.

         ANNE
He imports sugar and
molasses from Cuba.
Meyer’s gonna work for
him as a salesman

         YETTA
Molasses? Vus es dus?

         MEYER
It’s made outta sugar, Ma.
They use it for candy and
pancake syrups…

         MAX
(with a sly look at Meyer)
They use sugar for making
alcohol.

         MEYER
No kiddin, they do Pop?


EXT. RIVER CAFE. NIGHT.


A dive under the Brooklyn Bridge. A bunch of HOODS are standing guard as a MAIL TRUCK drives up. Three MAILMEN get out, backs to the CAMERA, and walk to the door.

INT.CAFE. NIGHT.

In a smoke filled room, Big Bill Dwyer is playing cards with his “boys.” The Mailmen enter.

         DWYER
You guys sellin’ tickets
to the Postman’s ball?


The Mailmen draw guns. CAMERA comes around on their leader, Benny Siegel

         MAILMAN
We’re here to pick up a
package.


EXT. TIMES SQUARE (STOCK) DAY.

Dawn and the city takes a breath for a few hours. The streets belong to the MILK WAGONS and LATE NIGHT STRAGGLERS.

EXT. DUCORE’S. DAY

An all night drug store on Forty seventh and Broadway. Meyer jumps out of a cab and enters, walking past a BORED CLERK.

         MEYER
Mix me a bicarbonate,
willya Mo, I just had
my mother’s matzoh balls.


INT. CHARLEY’S OFFICE.

A spare, windowless room. A few bridge chairs and a rickety card table. Charley is wolfing down a corned beef sandwich. Charley “the Bug” stands at his perennial post behind him. In a corner, reading the newspaper is a short, wiry, impeccably dressed hood named FRANK COSTELLO. Meyer enters.

         MEYER
Don’t you ever stop eating?

         CHARLEY
Gotta keep my strength up.


There is a knock. Benny enters.

         BENNY
Special delivery.


The mailmen drag a sack into the middle of the room. They slit it open, revealing:

BIG BILL DWYER

hogtied and gagged. Benny yanks the gag off his mouth.

         DWYER
(sputtering)
Sonsabitches! You can’t do
this to me.

         CHARLEY
Tell the truth, Bill.
If we asked you nice
would you have come?

         MEYER
Mr. Costello tells us you
got a  nice operation in
Brooklyn.

         COSTELLO
He’s got these speed boats,
cigarette boats they call
‘em right, Bill? They can
bring the booze over from
Jersey faster than the Coast
Guard can catch ‘em. He’s
got a fleet of taxis that
do nothin’ but make
deliveries.

         MEYER
They should pick up passengers,
too when they’re idle.

         CHARLEY
See, Bill, already Meyer came
up with an idea to double your
money. You ain’t gonna lose
nothin’ when you throw in with
us.

         DWYER
Whaddya mean when? I got
my own business. I got
friends.

         CHARLEY
Ain’t we your friends, Bill?
Benny was gonna dump you in
the river, but me and Meyer
saved you.

         BENNY
It’s like I always tellya,
Charley. You’re too nice.

         MEYER
Stick him back in the
sack. Let him call his
big shot friends…

         DWYER
(frightened)
Wait a second…You guys
got a proposition?

         CHARLEY
We wanna make you rich,
is that so bad? Frank’ll
knows all the cops and
the politicians so
nobody’ll bother you.
I’ll give you my personal
OK, which means you can
do business anywhere in
the city.

         DWYER
What do you get for
this OK?

         CHARLEY
Fifty per cent, we’re
partners, right? If you’re
not makin’ more money in
six months I’ll cover the
difference outta my own
pocket.

         DWYER
(resigned)
You guys wanna run every
racket in town?

         CHARLEY
Don’t wanna run’em, just
want a piece of ‘em.


INT. COURT ROOM. DAY.

A civil trial,an empty courtroom, a yawning judge, but Tom works himself into an eloquent frenzy in his summation. Pointing to his client, a plain elderly lady:

         TOM
If poor widow challenged
a powerful financial
institution in any other
country she would lose.


IN THE REAR OF THE COURTROOM

Tom’s boss, GEORGE MEDAILIE, slight, bald, middle aged, watches proudly.


TOM

But in America, no bank
however large can be allowed
to mismanage an account
however small. I implore you
gentlemen, give this woman the
justice she deserves.

INT. COURT OFFICE.DAY

Medailie is waiting as Tom enters.


TOM

Mr. Medailie, I’m honored.
The senior partner coming
to a minor civil suit.

         MEDAILIE
Always like to watch a
good lawyer in action.
We’ve got a new client
Tom—the Government.
I’ve been appointed US
Attorney for New York
City. My job is to
prosecute the gangster
bosses.

         TOM
You’ll need a thousand
lawyers to do the job
right.

         MEDAILIE
One is all I can afford.
So I want the best I can
get. Job pays twelve
hundred a year. What do
you say?

         TOM
It’s less than I make
now and I’m getting
married. Frankly, George,
my fiancee says these men
are harmless…

         MEDAILIE
Oh I know. People hate
Prohibition. Bootleggers
are really quaint characters
they say. Do you want to
see what these quaint
characters do?


INT.MORGUE. DAY.

Dewey and Medailie watch as MORGUE ATTENDANTS pull pallets out of wall. Dewey winces at four GRUESOME HOMICIDES.


MEDAILIE

These men were killed to
stop them from testifying.
Tortured and mutilated as
warning to others.

         TOM
(appalled)
Who did this?

         MEDAILIE
Irving Wexler, also known as
Waxey Gordon. Very refined,
a family man, collector of
first editions. A cheap
thief and a dope peddler..
Here’s another harmless
playboy.
(another MUG SHOT)
Arthur Flegenheimer also known
as Dutch Schulz. Beer, booze
and bookmaking in the Bronx
and Harlem. Brags publicly
about the men he’s killed.


Another MUG SHOT. They’re coming thick and fast.

         MEDAILIE
Frank Costello. He’s in
charge of bribing police
and politicians. Salvatore
Lucania, now known as
Charley Luciano.

         DEWEY
I’ve seen him.

         MEDAILIE
Passes himself off as a
sportsman, a Broadway
character, but he’s a
convicted drug dealer and
runs most of the bootlegging
operations in Manhattan.
Meyer Lansky, his partner.
Ben Siegel,a pathological
killer known as Bugsy. They
rent trucks to the bootleggers
and have a subsidiary that
contracts murders for other
mobsters. We have to show
people like your fiancee that
they are not Robin Hoods, but
depraved killers who are
destroying the moral fabric of
society.


Next: Part 10/ACT FIVE/Part 2: A Vendetta Is Born (Monday, 11/21) 

In a new department the Daily Event will reoffer some of these scripts. Read them and decide: would you like to have seen this movie?

Our first script is EMPIRES OF CRIME. Seven years in development it is a six part mini-series commissioned by a broadcast network and later reacquired by a cable station.

The story is about the founders of Organized Crime, Meyer Lansky and “Lucky” Luciano, their fifty year partnership and the empire they created. Their friendships and families, lives and loves. It is also about their implacable enemy Thomas Dewey, a young Republican attorney who built a political career prosecuting the Mob that propelled him to the NY Governor’s Mansion and almost to the White House.

*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13 (Calendar at right.) Use Contact Us, above, for submissions.

MOVIES YOU WILL NEVER SEE/Empires of Crime/ Part 8

Blog is updated.

WE ARE HAVING TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES WITH OUR SITE.
HOPE TO HAVE THEM RESOLVED SOON.
*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13 *Heywood Gould is the author of 9 screenplays including"Rolling Thunder,"Fort Apache, The Bronx, "Boys From Brazil"and "Cocktail." 

EMPIRES OF CRIME /Part 8
By Heywood Gould                            ACT FOUR/Part 2 INT. ROTHSTEIN’S LIBRARY. NIGHT. A meeting is just beginning. Rothstein’s valet is passing out cigars as he introduces the participants.                      ROTHSTEIN              This is Harry Greenberg              from Saint Louis. Abner              Zwillman from Newark.                      ZWILLMAN                     (very tall)              Everybody calls me,              Longie.                      ROTHSTEIN              Harry Solomon from              Boston...Charley Luciano,              Meyer Lansky, Ben Siegel...              Herman Wexler...                      CHARLEY                    (laughing)              Herman who? This is Waxey              Gordon, the hophead’s               friend. Whaddya goin’ by              an alias, Waxey?                      GORDON                (squat, dark and ugly)              I don’t answer to that              name.                      MEYER              Except when they’re              passin’ out money, huh              Waxey?                      ROTHSTEIN              Remember when cocaine was                           legal, boys? Coupla broken                          broken down old whores used                          used to use it. Then it was                       illegal and all of a sudden              the smart set wanted a sniff                         Well that's small change              compared to booze. Everybody              takes a drink, from the               college kids right down to              Grandma who likes a shot of              elderberry wine on her              birthday. Everybody who has                         a drink tonight is gonna              want one tomorrow  and we’re              gonna give it to them.                      MEYER              But they’re closin’ the              breweries, and the              distilleries. Where we              gonna get the booze?                      ROTHSTEIN              We bring it in ourselves.              From Canada, from Europe.              I’ve got a deal with              biggest distillery in              Scotland. There’s a              boatload of premium scotch              whiskey headin’ for the              states right now. I’m              talkin’ to Bronfman and              Rosenstiel in Montreal               about sellin’ me Canadian              whiskey. Rothshild’s gonna              ship wine in from France              and Italy.                      MEYER              How you gonna get a              Rothschild to break the              law?                      ROTHSTEIN              He won’t have to. The              freighters stop just              outside the twelve mile              limit so they’re outta               US waters. Then, we              send launches out to              meet ‘em.                      CHARLEY              Where ya gonna get the              boats?                      ZWILLMAN              I’ll take care of that.              Every fisherman in Jersey              gets a coupla bucks plus              a free case of booze for              the use of his boat.                      CHARLEY              You’ll have to fix              everybody from the Coast              Guard to the cop on the              beat.                      ROTHSTEIN              Fix a coupla Senators               and the President too              if I have to. This is              gonna be the biggest              business in America.              There'll be plenty of              cash to bribe the              politicians.                      MEYER              You’re gonna need trucks              to bring it into the              city.                      ROTHSTEIN              You’re good with cars. You              can get the wheels for me.              We’re gonna move ten              thousand cases every few              weeks. King Solomon’s              gonna bring it in from              Canada.                      SOLOMON              I can smuggle it through              an old logging road in              Vermont. I got a Boston              banker, Joe Kennnedy.              He'll front us all the              money we need...                      GORDON              How do we make money?                      ROTHSTEIN              I’ll cover the up front              expenses and pay a flat              fee to anyone who delivers              to my clients. You guys              will each have your              customers. You’ll reimburse              me my costs plus twenty              five per cent of your              action.                      CHARLEY              But booze is gonna be              like gold. People will              be robbin’ each other              left and right.                      ROTHSTEIN              It’ll be up to you guys              to protect your own              shipments. We’ll have to              work together. If we start              fighting among ourselves              it’ll turn into a free for              all and nobody will make              any money. Agreed? The men shoot mistrustful looks at one another.                      CHARLEY              Well, let’s give it a              try anyway. The men nod...”Give it a try...” As they start making plans, Charley approaches Rothstein with an admiring look.                      CHARLEY              You just put together              a big corporation, AR.                      ROTHSTEIN              Not yet. I got a lotta              smart guys together.              Gave ’em a good proposition.              Answered all their questions.              Now let’s hope they don't              kill each other. LITTLE ITALY 1921 INT. BAKERY. NIGHT. Joe "The Boss" Masseria is chewing on a cigar. Behind him, a big scowling hood named JOE NAPOLI. Charley, plays the courtier, anxious to please. Meyer stands behind him.                      LUCIANO              See Joe. My boys wanna              give you a little token              of their appreciation              for you doin’ business              with them. OUTSIDE Benny opens the rumble seat of a PIERCE ARROW, revealing a case of SCOTCH WHISKEY.                      CHARLEY              They got a load of premium              Scotch, exclusive for you.                      MASSERIA                     (in Italian)              How much do the Jews              want?                      LUCIANO                   (in Italian)              Fifty dollars a case,              five thousand cases...                      MASSERIA                    (in Italian)              Give 'em twenty five.                      CHARLEY               (turns gruffly to Meyer)              Twenty five a  case.              Take it or leave it.                      MEYER              Can you get thirty,              Charley?                      MASSERIA                    (in Italian)              Twenty seven. No more              talkin’ or the deal’s              off...                      CHARLEY              Twenty seven. Be happy              you’re gettin’ it.                      MEYER              Anything you say,              Charley.               (bowing to Masseria)              An honor doing business              with you, Mr. Masseria. On the way out, Charley whispers, triumphantly.                      CHARLEY              He went for twenty seven               Meyer, just like you              said.                      MEYER              Always gotta make the               other guy think he beat              you down...                      LUCIANO              How'd you get so smart?                      MEYER               (taps his forehead)              Chicken soup. MASSERIA watches them walk out and turns with a sneer to Napoli.                      MASSERIA              Cornudo. Thinks he’s              foolin’ me. How many guns              you got?                      NAPOLI              Ten.                      MASSERIA              Bring twenty...The trucks              come back. The drivers              don’t. EXT. L&S GARAGE. NIGHT. On Clinton Street in Lower Manhattan. Trucks roll in and out as Rabinowitz and some DAIRY TRUCK DRIVERS enter..                      DRIVER              L&S is Lansky and Siegel.              I don’t wanna get mixed              up with the Bugs and              Meyer mob.                      RABINOWITZ              Don’t worry. Meyer says              this is just a simple              driving job. Benny, stylish in a Chesterfield and homburg comes out with a manic smile. Meyer follows him with a clipboard.                      MEYER              Hey fellas, ready to              make money?                      BENNY              We’re gonna take a nice              moonlight ride to the              Jersey shore...Next time              bring your girlfriends,              we’ll go dancin’. EXT. EGG HARBOR, NEW JERSEY. NIGHT. OFF SHORE  a FREIGHTER is anchored. Charley, Meyer and Benny watch as LAUNCHES head out to meet it.                      MEYER              Five thousand cases of              premium scotch? What's              Masseria gonna get for              ‘em.                      CHARLEY              Three hundred a case.               He’ll be sold out              tomorrow morning. They turn at the sight of MOTORCYCLE POLICE pulling up.                      CHARLEY              It’s our police escort.              Fifty bucks per cop, five              grand to the Commander              plus a case of scotch.              And they take us right to              the New York border. EXT. COUNTRY ROAD. NIGHT. A CONVOY OF TRUCKS rolls down the road, their side panels emblazoned with the sign: L&S TRUCKING. INT. TRUCK. NIGHT. Meyer is driving, Next to him Charley looks out the window. Benny is hunched in the back seat.                      CHARLEY              It’s dead in the sticks.              Them farmers are all in              bed by ten o”clock.                      BENNY              You wanna come out              tomorrow? Esther's got              a girlfriend she wants              you to meet.                      MEYER              Friday night I go to              my mother's... Suddenly, a VOLLEY of BULLETS shatters the WINDSHIELD. A SPOTLIGHT blinds them. THE HOOD POPS AND SMOKE POURS out of the busted radiator. Meyer jams on the brakes.                      BENNY              It’s a stick up! SEVERAL SEDANS are parked across the road, blocking their way. Behind the light, a HARSH VOICE  commands:                      HARSH VOICE              Everybody out, Hands up! Charley grabs a shotgun and fires blind out of the window. Meyer pulls a.38.and both men jump out of the truck, while Benny sneaks out from the back. OUTSIDE Rabinowitz and his drivers are standing by their trucks with their hands up. Meyer waves to them.                      MEYER              Get down. Charley fires a blast at the sedans. Another VOLLEY of SHOTS rings out from behind the spotlight. A driver goes down. Charley fires into the darkness. Meyer stays low and watches. BENNY moves around behind the truck. He sees SILHOUETTES in the trees.. He fires a BURST and a silhouette disappears. Fires again and the SPOTLIGHT SHATTERS. THE HIJACKERS fire back, their pistols flaming in the darkness. BENNY jumps into the open with insane courage and advances on the sedans, firing point blank. Meyer and Charley move in behind him, firing. There is an ear splitting bout of gunfire. In the eerie silence that follows we hear GROANS and HURRIED FOOTSTEPS mixing with the chirping of CRICKETS. The boys stumble over bodies in the dark. IN A BLOOD SPATTERED SEDAN a MAN is slumped over the wheel, his brains blown out. There is another BURST of MACHINE GUN FIRE. Meyer and Charley run into the woods. In a clearing they find Benny standing over a WOUNDED MAN.                      BENNY              This guy ain’t dead...              Yet. They turn him over. It’s Joe Napoli, Masseria’s bodyguard.                      CHARLEY              Joe Napoli. Fat Joe send              you?                      NAPOLI                 (gasping in pain)              Gimme a break, Charley.              Ain’t I always been fair              with you? Benny kicks              him, savagely.                      BENNY              Answer the man.                      NAPOLI               (pleading for his life)              Don Giuseppe set you up.              He said you were workin'              with the Jews against              him. You’re my gumbare,              Charley. I didn’t wanna              do this to you, but he              made me..Please Charley,               I'll work for you. I’ll               spy on the fat bastard.              Don’t kill me.                      CHARLEY              You’re already dead, kid.              Don Giuseppe won’t let you              live for bunglin’ this              heist...                      MEYER                (as they walk away)              You better get Masseria              now.                      CHARLEY              Can’t. He feeds too he'll              deny it. He’ll say Napoli              was freelancin’ and he              didn’t know nothin’ about              it.                      MEYER               Yeah, but he’ll take               another shot at you.                      CHARLEY               He’s gotta be careful.               He knows he can’t knock               me off for no reason               ‘cause it’s a sign of               weakness and it might               give other guys ideas.               They swore an oath of               loyalty, but they’ll               turn on him overnight               if they think I’m               stronger. I’m gonna               keep kissin’ his ring               until that happens. Another BURST from Benny’s Tommy gun silences Joe Napoli’s pleading. Charley turns with a smile to Meyer.                      CHARLEY              Don’t worry. Our time’ll              come. END ACT FOUR Next: Part 9/ACT FIVE: Taking Control(Wednesday, 11/16)  In a new department the Daily Event will reoffer some of these scripts. Read them and decide: would you like to have seen this movie? Our first script is EMPIRES OF CRIME. Seven years in development it is a six part mini-series commissioned by a broadcast network and later reacquired by a cable station. The story is about the founders of Organized Crime, Meyer Lansky and "Lucky" Luciano, their fifty year partnership and the empire they created. Their friendships and families, lives and loves. It is also about their implacable enemy Thomas Dewey, a young Republican attorney who built a political career prosecuting the Mob that propelled him to the NY Governor's Mansion and almost to the White House. *For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13 (Calendar at right.) Use Contact Us, above, for submissions. *Pt 1/Oct. 19, Pt 2/Oct. 23, Pt 3/Oct. 26, Pt 4/Oct 31, Pt 5/Nov. 3, Pt 6/Nov. 7, Pt7/Nov. 13

MOVIES YOU WILL NEVER SEE/Empires of Crime/Part 7

WE ARE HAVING TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES WITH OUR SITE.

HOPE TO HAVE THEM RESOLVED SOON.

*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13. Use Contact Us, above, for submissions. *Heywood Gould is the author of 9 screenplays including "Rolling Thunder,"Fort Apache, The Bronx, "Boys From Brazil"and "Cocktail." 

EMPIRES OF CRIME /Part 7
  By Heywood Gould

                           ACT FOUR/Part 1  EXT. DELANCEY STREET. DAY A balmy spring day. The streets teem with IMMIGRANT HUMANITY.Tom Dewey, sweating in a black suit, is speaking earnestly to a group of PEDDLERS, who keep shouting him down.                       TOM               Look, give me a chance.               I’ve come all the way               downtown to convince you               people that Republican               is not a dirty word. Moans and groans. OLD PEDDLER               Take off your coat, have a               cold drink. It’s a long               subway back ride up town.                       TOM               Honest government will               put money in your pockets.               It will provide for your               families. Insure a better               future for your children.               You don’t have to accept               intimidation or threats.               You don’t have to pay off               every cop or thug. This is               a free country...                       PUSHCART PEDDLER               For the rich.                       TOM               For you, too. You can               change things. Your vote               counts.                       OLD PEDDLER               I know, I voted four times               last week. Fifty cents a               vote.                       TOM               I understand your cynicism.               But we have laws that               protect your right to do               business without bribery or               corruption...                       PUSHCART PEDDLER               There’s our protection... ACROSS THE STREET Charley and his boys, Davey, Vito and Albert, are back slapping, shaking hands, flipping coins to the kids.                       TOM               Who can Luciano protect               you from?                       PUSHCART PEDDLER               From Luciano, who else? Everyone laughs.                       OLD PEDDLER               When we need money, your               upstanding Republicans at               the bank won’t lend it to               us. So we borrow from               Charley Luciano...                       TOM               And he makes you pay it               back twenty cents on the               dollar.                       PUSHCART PEDDLER               Maybe, but he comes through               with the cash, no questions               asked.                       FISHMONGER               Business is done in a               different way down here, Mr.               Dewey. You won’t change that. INT. ARNOLD ROTHSTEIN'S BILLIARD ROOM. NIGHT. Leather and dark wood. The valet serves drinks on a silver tray. Meyer watches, cue in hand as AR is circles the table.                       ROTHSTEIN               Two to one I make the nine               ball in the corner, off two               cushions into the side,               Meyer.                       MEYER               I wouldn't give you odds               if you said the balls were               gonna roll in by themselves,               AR. Rothstein laughs and turns to Charley, who is sitting on the couch with Rabinowitz, the union organizer.                       ROTHSTEIN               And if I laid a hundred to               one that I could get               Weinberg and the Dairy               Owners Association to offer               the truck drivers a raise to               a dollar an a half an hour..?                       CHARLEY               I’d never bet against you,               AR.                       ROTHSTEIN               Smart boy, I already fixed it.               Just waiting for you to sign               on the dotted line, Mr.               Rabinowitz.                       RABINOWITZ               What do I do to get this raise?                       ROTHSTEIN               Lepke and Gurrah Shapiro have               been very helpful in these               negotiations.                       RABINOWITZ               They’re the bosses’ goons.                       MEYER               So make ‘em vice presidents.               Then they’ll be the union’s               goons.                       CHARLEY               All you gotta do is raise               the dues a dollar a month               and kick it back to Lepke.                       RABINOWITZ               I’m gonna be the front man               while the gangsters control               the union.                       MEYER               You wanna get more money               for your members, don’t               you?                (offers a wad of bills)               Don’t worry, the front               man don’t get left out in               the cold.                       CHARLEY               Gotta take bribes, kid.               People get nervous dealin’               with an honest man. Gotta               be a crook if you want’em               to trust you. Rabinowitz senses the subtle threat. He takes the money. INT. WAREHOUSE. NIGHT. A CRAP GAME. HIGH ROLLERS  shoving, shouting, throwing money down. Meyer, watches the stickman handle thousands of dollars. Charley, in a dark suit with a yellow and black handkerchief peeking out of the breast pocket, plays the host, smiling and backslapping, but always with a cold eye on the action. Benny, groomed and dapper, flirts with the DEBS at the door. Meyer takes a stack of bills off the craps table. The other two gravitate toward him and they walk toward the office.                       MEYER               We’re up over fourteen               G’s.                       BENNY               AR’s gotta be happy with               that.                       MEYER               That don’t even cover               expenses. You know how much               he gives out?                       CHARLEY               He don’t tell nobody.                       MEYER               He don’t have to. Do the               numbers. He controls four               hundred pool rooms in New               York, takin’ bets, sellin’               lotteries. Each one pays               three hundred a month to               the local cops. Five               hundred crap games, each               payin’ a hundred and fifty,               two hundred card joints,               hundred fifty a month.               Twenty fancy casinos for               the carriage trade. Five               hundred a month to stay in               business.                       CHARLEY               My head’s achin’ from all               this arithmetic.                       MEYER               Two hundred and thirty               five G’s a year to the               cops just to stay in               business. And whaddya               think he gives the District               Leader and Assemblyman?                       CHARLEY               Marrone, AR’s got the whole               city fixed. INT. OFFICE. NIGHT. The three enter a cramped, windowless room. At a desk, a BOOKKEEPER in a green eyeshade is counting money. In the corner RED LEVINE, a hulking, red headed hood is playing solitaire. Lansky picks up a stack of bills, tied with a rubber band.                       MEYER               What’s the count?                       BOOKKEEPER               Thirty nine hundred in               twenties...Without removing               the rubber band, Lansky               riffles the bills.                       MEYER               Thirty-eight sixty....                       BOOKKEEPER               I counted those bills three               times... Benny cuffs him in the back of the head.                       BENNY               Whaddya arguin’... Meyer throws the stack back at him.                       MEYER               I told ya: put the twenties               in four hundred dollar piles,               twenty bills to a stack.               Fives, fifty, singles a               hundred. Charley yanks               Levine’s tie loose and begins               to retie it.                       CHARLEY               You know what a gavone is?               You walk around like a slob               you don’t represent me.                       MEYER                 (to the Bookkeeper)               Get the numbers right to               the penny. Treat my money               with the respect it               deserves...                       BOOKKEEPER               Your money. I thought it               was Rothstein’s.                       MEYER               Some of it. But none of               it’s yours, remember               that. Benny cuffs him again.                       BENNY               Yeah. You got a future... The boys walk out, laughing. INT. ROTHSTEIN’S CASINO. NIGHT. A festive, glittering cross section of New York night life. SOCIALITES in evening clothes, GAMBLERS, POLITICIANS, SHOWGIRLS. Rothstein circulates, gladhanding, signing chits. CHARLEY, MEYER AND BENNY enter and walk cockily to the back, stopping to laugh and back slap at a few tables before reaching Rothstein.                       ROTHSTEIN               Hey boys, did we break even? Meyer whispers a figure.                       ROTHSTEIN (CONT'D)               Any winners? Always gotta               send one sucker home happy.               Stick around I got a big               surprise. At his signal a JAZZ BAND strikes up and marches out, followed by WAITERS carrying buckets of champagne, Rothstein mounts a roulette table and announces:                       ROTHSTEIN (CONT'D)               Bar’s open, kids. Eat, drink               and be merry for  tomorrow               we’ll be dry.                       BENNY               Somebody’s birthday?                       ROTHSTEIN               Yeah, ours. He holds up the front page of the New York Times. VOLSTEAD ACT PASSES. ALCOHOL DECLARED ILLEGAL. The Daily News: THE PARTY’S OVER... ALCOHOL DECLARED ILLEGAL..                       ROTHSTEIN               The geniuses in Washington               just passed the Volstead               Act. As of midnight tonight               alcohol consumption is                 illegal in the US of A.               Know what that means?                       MEYER               A lotta sober people in               the morning.                       ROTHSTEIN                  (pouring champagne)               Not for long. Look at these               people. You think they’re               gonna stop drinkin’ because               Congress says so? They’re               gonna drink even more. And               we’re gonna give ‘em all               they want.                       (toasting)               Here’s to our leaders in               Washington. They just                handed the whole country               over to us. INT. REPUBLICAN CLUB. NIGHT. A celebration. Champagne corks are popping. The normally dour Republicans are toasting each other. Tom is standing off to the side watching with disapproval. A YOUNG REPUBLICAN offers him a glass.                       YOUNG REPUBLICAN               C’mon Tom, have your last               legal cocktail.                       TOM               I’m not much of a drinker.               Guess I won’t miss it.                       YOUNG REPUBLICAN               You won’t have to. I’ve got               three cases of scotch in the               basement. And I’ve got a guy               who’ll get us all we want...                       TOM               Who’s this guy?                       YOUNG REPUBLICAN                        (with a wink)               You know. A friend of Arnold               Rothstein’s.                       PORTLY REPUBLICAN               C’mon boy crack open another               case of that French seltzer               water... Tom sees the irony.                       TOM               So we’re all going to               end up making the gangsters               rich.                       YOUNG REPUBLICAN               Richer my boy... A lot richer. END Part 1/Act Four Next: Part 2/Act Four: An Empire is Born In a new department the Daily Event will reoffer some of these scripts. Read them and decide: would you like to have seen this movie? Our first script is EMPIRES OF CRIME. Seven years in development it is a six part mini-series commissioned by a broadcast network and later reacquired by a cable station. The story is about the founders of Organized Crime, Meyer Lansky, and "Lucky" Luciano, their fifty year partnership and the empire they created. Their friendships and families, lives and loves. It is also about their implacable enemy Thomas Dewey, a young Republican attorney who built a political career prosecuting the Mob that propelled him to the NY Governor's Mansion and almost to the White House. *For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13 Use Contact Us, above, for submissions.

 


		

MOVIES YOU WILL NEVER SEE/Empires of Crime/Part 6

*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13. Use Contact Us, above, for submissions.

*Heywood Gould is the author of 9 screenplays including “Rolling Thunder,” Fort Apache, The Bronx,” Boys From Brazil,” and “Cocktail.”

EMPIRES OF CRIME/Part 6

By

Heywood Gould


ACT THREE


NEW YORK, 1918

INT. MOVIE THEATER. NIGHT.

ON SCREEN—a NEWSREEL shows AMERICAN TROOPS disembarking from a ship, greeted by CHEERING CROWDS…The AUDIENCE SINGS “OVER THERE” The subtitle reads:”WAR OVER…`100,000 AMERICAN TROOPS COME HOME VICTORIOUS. PAN TO the AUDIENCE where Meyer and Benny watch with their young GIRLFRIENDS… The AUDIENCE is singing the popular WWI tune:

         AUDIENCE
And we won’t give up/’Til
it’s over/Over there…

         BENNY
(singing)
Eighteen bucks a month
them doughboys were
gettin’. Over there…

         MEYER
(sings back)
Eighteen bucks a month.
A hundred thousand guys.
We coulda run some crap


INT. FAT AL’S NIGHT.

A raucous Lower East Side dive, smoke filled, festive, crude. A JAZZ BAND swings. Meyer, Benny and their girls push through the writhing COUPLES on the dance floor to their table.

         BENNY’S GIRL
I never been to a place like
this….

         BENNY
Yeah and you learned how
to smooch from a rabbi…

         MEYER
(to his girl)
Get a drink, doll, I’m gonna
look over the action…


He walks over to a noisy CRAP TABLE.

         CHARLEY
Stick’ em up, pal…


Meyer turns and sees Charley older and harder, but with the same mischievous glint in his eye. He is dressed in the loud colors of a street pimp. There are two cold eyed THUGS standing behind him.

Meyer hugs him, gleefully.

         MEYER
Hey Salvatore.

         CHARLEY
(returning the hug)
Not Salvatore no more. It’s
Charley, Charley Luciano,
Maier.

         MEYER
It’s Meyer Lansky now. I
got sick of people callin’
me the Mayor.

         CHARLEY
Yeah and I learned my lesson
in the can. All these guys
callin’ me Sally like I was a
girl.

         MEYER
I bet you made ‘em sorry.
The two laugh and pound
each other on the back.

         CHARLEY
I missed you guys.

         MEYER
Yeah me too. We don’t know
where to go for the good
spaghetti…

         CHARLEY
You still with that bughouse
shlammer?


Benny runs over, laughing and grabs Charley in a bear hug.

         BENNY
What’d you call me?

         CHARLEY
(fingers Benny’s loud suit)
How many guys you rob to
get those rags?

         BENNY
A broad bought it for me.

MEYER
So, you makin’ money?

         CHARLEY
(flashing a HUGE ROLL)
What do you call this?


Benny pulls out a big WAD of BILLS.

         BENNY
Mine’s bigger.

         CHARLEY
How about you, Meyer?


Meyer takes out a couple of crumpled bills.

         MEYER
I hide my money in my
sister’s drawers…

         BENNY
And if you know his sister
that’s the safest place in
the world…

         CHARLEY
You guys wanna go for corned
beef?

         BENNY
We’ll dump our girls. You
dump yours.


The two thugs move up with menacing glares, but Charley restrains them.

         CHARLEY
This here’s Albert Anastasia
and Vito Genovese.

         MEYER
Hiya boys…Just jokin’.
Seeya at Bernstein’s,
Charley..


As they walk away…

         ANASTASIA
Whaddya wanna hang out with
those Hebes?

         CHARLEY
I was runnin’ with Meyer
before I knew you was
alive. Them guys are my
best friends.


INT. DELICATESSEN. NIGHT

Charley is wolfing down a corned beef sandwich while Benny tells a war story.

         BENNY
So the guy says you gonna
fight me you little shrimp
and Meyer knocks him ass
over tin cup…

         CHARLEY
You gotta have a little
Sicilian in you, Meyer. The
way you drop a guy just for
lookin’ funny at you.

         MEYER
And you gotta have a little
Jew, the way you love that
corned beef. Hey, see that
guy sittin’ with Lepke.


ARNOLD ROTHSTEIN

Mid forties, elegant in a top hat and evening clothes is gobbling deli with Buchalter and Shapiro. He waves over at Meyer.

         MEYER
That’s Arnold Rothstein.
They call him The Brain…
The guy owns every politician
in town.

         CHARLEY
So what’s he doin’ with those
headbusters?

         MEYER
He owns them, too. Sets up all
the labor deals. High class
gamblin’ joints. Does it with
class. No shlammin’, no shootin’.
If you woulda known him you
wouldn’t have spent a minute in
jail.

         BENNY
How’d you get caught anyway,
a smart guy like you?

         CHARLEY
Cops grabbed me with a hatbox
of full of nose candy.

         MEYER
You still sellin’ hop to
hooers?

         CHARLEY
It’s a good business. Little
package big money. I’d be
walkin’ around today if that
pimp Motchie hadn’t ratted
me out.

         BENNY
Can’t let these rats think
they can get away with
squealin’.

         CHARLEY
Motchie’s in with the cops.
I touch him they’ll be all
over me.

         MEYER
So we’ll get him for you.

         CHARLEY
You’d do that for me?

         MEYER
Yeah. And then you get
somebody for us. Deal?

         CHARLEY
(hugging him, laughing)
I shoulda known you weren’t
doin’ no friendly favors…
Deal…


INT. NEW YORK REPUBLICAN CLUB. NIGHT.

A paneled club room. A group of portly businessmen, more interested in their cigars than their guest speaker, Fiorello La Guardia. All except for Tom who listens with interest.

         LA GUARDIA
For too long the Republican
Party has been content to
control the upstate vote and
leave New York City to the
crooks in Tammany Hall.

         AN OLD REPUBLICAN
We have no influence with the
foreign element, Mr. La
Guardia.

         LA GUARDIA
You’re not trying. These people
come from cultures of bribery
and intimidation. They have to
be educated in the American
way of life..

         ANOTHER REPUBLICAN
The police are corrupt. The whole
area is a sinkhole of graft and
depravity.

         TOM
The gangsters get away
with murder in broad daylight.
They are accepted in the
community.

         LA GUARDIA
They’re not accepted, sir.
They’re feared and hated.

         TOM
So if a young Republican
challenged them in their
territory…

         LA GUARDIA
The first politician who stands
up to the racketeers will be a
hero to thousands of new voters.


Tom nods; he’s getting an idea.

EXT. ESSEX STREET. NIGHT

Motchie parades down the street with his “girls,” speaking loudly, brushing people aside. He meets Meyer and Benny coming the other way.

         BENNY
Well look who’s here.

         MEYER
You meet the best people
on Essex Street, dontcha know.

         MOTCHIE
Hey boys. Haven’t seen you
around lately, Benny.

         BENNY
Not crazy about the
merchandise, Motchie.
If I wanna screw an old
broad I can go to my cousin
Ruthie.

         MOTCHIE
Hey, I’ll get you anything
you want. Come down to my
joint on Bayard Street.
Getcha a pipe, too.

         BENNY
That’s more like it…

EXT.CHINATOWN.NIGHT

Motchie leads the boys down a dark, narrow street. CHINESE bustle by, heads down.

         MOTCHIE
I been hearin’ a lot about
you boys. Workin’ with
Lepke.

         MEYER
Industrial management. We
been hearin’ a lot about you,
too…

         MOTCHIE
Yeah, I’m spreadin’ out. Got
a joint uptown at the Abbey
Hotel.


Meyer looks around; the street is empty. He grabs Motchie and walks him toward a basement entrance.

         MOTCHIE
Hey, this ain’t the place.


From behind, Benny jams an ICE PICK into Motchie’s spine. He screams and goes rigid. Meyer drags him down the steps. Benny jumps down after and plunges the ice pick into the back of his neck. He goes limp. The boys jump out and walk away, Benny tossing the pick as they turn the corner.

INT. SINGING CLASS. NIGHT.

Tom Dewey, now in his early twenties, is standing at a piano, straining to hit the high notes in Pagliacci. In the class: FRANCES HUTT, a petite, pretty soprano winces at every clinker. The MAESTRO, a temperamental Italian, rises from the piano.

         MAESTRO
Mr. Dewey, may I ask: are
you studying another
profession?

         TOM
I’m at Columbia Law School.

         MAESTRO
Well don’t ever sing in
front of a jury. You’ll
lose the case…


INT. DRUGSTORE. NIGHT.

Frances and Tom sit in a booth sipping sodas.

         FRANCES
You have to work up to the
high notes.


She demonstrates, singing a flawless scale. The CUSTOMERS applaud and Tom shakes his head with an admiring smile.

          TOM
I’ll never sing like that.
I’ll never hold an audience
spellbound.

          FRANCES
There’s no better stage
than a courtroom.

          TOM
Or a political debate. I’m
getting active in the
Republican Club…

          FRANCES
Won’t get much applause
there. Democrats run this
town.

          TOM
Not for long. I heard a
man named La Guardia speak
the other night. He says
the party needs young men
to carry its message to
the people.

          FRANCES
Tom Dewey the pride of
Oswosso, Michigan, rides
into the big city on his
white horse guns blazing,
and throws all the bad
guys out.

          TOM
Makes a good story,
doesn’t it?

          FRANCES
Let’s just say you’ll sing
the lead in Rigoletto
before you clean up New
York.


INT. ITALIAN BAKERY. NIGHT.

Benny and Meyer sit at a marble table eating cheesecake. Across the room Charley is standing, hat in hand, in front of Joe Masseria, who has gotten fatter since we first saw him. The boys watch in amazement as Charley kisses his ring.

         BENNY
You see that?


Charley returns with a smile.

         CHARLEY
Okay you’re in. I told
Masseria you were workin’
with me.

         MEYER
What does that get us?

         CHARLEY
Protection. We can run any
racket we want in this
neighborhood as long as we
throw him somethin’.

          BENNY
What makes him so big?

          CHARLEY
He’s kinda the head of the
club that runs everything.

          MEYER
How do we join this club?

          CHARLEY
You don’t, it’s for Italians
only. This guy snaps his finger
and a thousand greaseballs kiss
his hand and call him Don
Giuseppe like he’s still in the
old country. He’s a fat pig,
don’t know from nothin’.
But the crumbs off his table is
like the biggest loaf of bread
you ever seen.

         BENNY
I could stroll over there
right now and cut open that
tub of guts.

         MEYER
Then you’d have a thousand
Italians with a vendetta
against you. We oughta go see
Rothstein. He does business
the American way.


EXT. ROTHSTEIN’S TOWNHOUSE. NIGHT

Meyer and Charley stand at the door, looking around in awe.

         MEYER
Not bad, huh? They don’t
call him The Brain for
nothin’.


The door opens. A BUTLER greets them.

         BUTLER
Good evening, gentlemen. Mr.
Rothstein is waiting.

They follow him through a glittering vestibule.

         CHARLEY
How does a little putz like
you get to the great Arnold
Rothstein?

         MEYER
I met him at the Weinberg
Bar Mitzvah. See, we got
a club, too.

         CHARLEY
How do I join?

         MEYER
First, you get a painful
operation.


ROTHSTEIN, in a silk smoking jacket, greets them with a smile.

         ROTHSTEIN
Meyer, Charley, thanks for
coming.

         CHARLEY
It’s an honor, Mr. Rothstein.


Rothstein puts his arms around both boys and walks them into the dining room.

         ROTHSTEIN
Everybody calls me AR…


INT.ROTHSTEIN’S DINING ROOM. NIGHT.

An opulent table under a crystal chandelier. The butler serves and pours. Meyer and Charley, are intimidated by the surroundings, confused by the array of cutlery.

         ROTHSTEIN
A cop is a crook with no
guts. He’ll always be
happy with a small piece
of your action. That’s
your fish knife, Charley.

         CHARLEY
Oh yeah, my fish knife…

ROTHSTEIN
Now the politicians, they’re
just a bunch of hypocrites.
Whorehouse on Saturday,
church on Sunday.

         MEYER
What does that make us AR?

         ROTHSTEIN
Businessmen, backbone of
America. We give people
what they want. How you
makin’ the rent, Charley?

         CHARLEY
I help the boys downtown.
Sell a little hop…

         ROTHSTEIN
Good business to invest in
on the sly. Let somebody
else do the dirty work.
How about you, Meyer?

         MEYER
I like to run a crap games.

         CHARLEY
He’s a whiz with numbers,AR.

         ROTHSTEIN
That’s what I’m lookin’ for.
Ford makes a car, everybody
buys it,. Post makes a cereal
everybody eats it. I have a
product–gambling, which I can
turn into the biggest industry
in America. But I need talented
guys to run it. You boys are
real executive material. We
just have to smooth out some
of the rough edges.


INT.WANAMAKER’S. DAY.

A conservative haberdasher. Meyer is being fitted for a suit under Rothstein’s watchful eye.

         MEYER
I coulda gone to
Hennigsberg’s on Rivington
Street for half price.

         ROTHSTEIN
Forget those greenhorns, you
gotta use an American tailor.
Somebody sees you in a John
Wanamaker suit they know you
got class…

         CHARLEY
steps out of a fitting room,
a man transformed in a pin
striped suit.

         CHARLEY
What do you think?

         ROTHSTEIN
You look like the Chairman
of the Board.

         MEYER
Ironing board maybe.


Charley admires himself in the mirror.

         CHARLEY
Clothes make the man they
say.
(pokes Meyer)
From now on, call me Chairman
of the Board.
</>

END ACT THREE

Next: Part 7/Act Four: Billions & Booze (Wednesday, 11/09/11)

In a new department the Daily Event will reoffer some of these scripts. Read them and decide: would you like to have seen this movie?

Our first script is EMPIRES OF CRIME. Seven years in development it is a six part mini-series commissioned by a broadcast network and later reacquired by a cable station.

The story is about the founders of Organized Crime, Meyer Lansky, and “Lucky” Luciano, their fifty year partnership and the empire they created. Their friendships and families, lives and loves. It is also about their implacable enemy Thomas Dewey, a young Republican attorney who built a political career prosecuting the Mob that propelled him to the NY Governor’s Mansion and almost to the White House.

*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13.  Use Contact Us, above, for submissions.

 

MOVIES YOU WILL NEVER SEE/Empires of Crime/Part 5

*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13.  Use Contact Us, above, for submissions.

Heywood Gould is the author of 9 screenplays including “Rolling Thunder,” Fort Apache, The Bronx,” Boys From Brazil,” and “Cocktail.”

EMPIRES OF CRIME/Part 5

By

Heywood Gould

ACT TWO

EXT. BOWERY. NIGHT.

A few weeks later. The Bowery is the Broadway of downtown New York, featuring VAUDEVILLE THEATERS, SALOONS, crowds of ROWDIES out for a night on the town. Maier and Benny stand outside a saloon gaping at the painted WHORES and their flashy PIMPS. Maier has a cigarette dangling out of the corner of his mouth. Benny ogles the women.

         BENNY
Salvatore gettin’ us
broads?

         MAIER
Nah. Business before
pleasure.

They peek into saloon thick with smoke and honky tonk music

SALVATORE

is talking to a FIDGETY MAN at the bar. A YOUNG WHORE pushes through the swinging doors, dragging a giggly, staggering DRUNK.

         YOUNG WHORE
C’mon honey, let’s get some
air.

TWO YOUNG MEN jump out and drag the drunk into an alley. They blackjack him to the ground, then “roll” him, taking his pocket watch and billfold. IN THE BAR a buxom singer is drawing cheers with her song.

         BUXOM SINGER
The wealthy Four Hundred in
mansions reside/ With fronts
of brown stone and stoops high
and wide/While the poor working
people in poverty deep/ In
cellars and shanties are huddled
like sheep

INT. OSWOSSO LUTHERAN. NIGHT

A church social. YOUNG TOM DEWEY is singing as MARY SIMMONS, a young girl accompanies him on the piano. COUPLES take their last dance and wander out hand in hand as the song ends.

         YOUNG TOM
Good night Irene, Irene/
Good night Irene/ Good
night Irene, Good night
Irene/ I’ll see you in
my dreams.

EXT.SALOON. NIGHT.

Salvatore returns with a bottle of gin and a small package.

         SALVATORE
Keep chickie for the cops…


He draws a VIAL OF COLORLESS LIQUID out of his pocket. Reaches into his pants pocket for several small GLASS JARS.

         SALVATORE
Used to buy opium in a drug
store like cough syrup. Then
the law said it wasn’t legal
no more. But people still
want it so I give it to ‘em.

         MAIER
How you make money?


Salvatore pours a small amount of opium into the jars, then fills them up with gin.

         SALVATORE
I buy the dope off that
junkie in the saloon. Five
bucks a bottle. Cut it with
gin and sell it for three
bucks a jar to the girls on
Essex Street.

         MAIER
You could get guys on the
street to sell it for you
so you don’t gotta worry
about cops.

         BENNY
The broads like this stuff?

         SALVATORE
They love it. You should
see ‘em jump when I come
around.

INT. ROSIE SOLOMON’S. DAY

A brothel in the back room of a saloon. Through a beaded curtain, we can see MEN drinking and hear a PIANO playing. Under red lights, YOUNG GIRLS in camisoles, giggle and gossip with CLIENTS, WORKING MEN of all ages. Salvatore, Maier and Benny enter and are immediately surrounded by GIRLS flirting, entreating “Sal, you bring me a present?”..”Got any of that nose candy, Sal..?” Salvatore brushes them off with a laugh “I don’t see you givin’ nothin’ away.” MOTCHIE, the pimp steps out with a desperate grin. He is young and full of bluster, but wary of Salvatore.

         MOTCHIE
I supply the girls around
here.

         SALVATORE
They like my product better.
(menacing)
That okay with you, Motchie?

Motchie is about to defy him, but Benny moves in with a crazy look and he backs off with an ingratiating smile.

         MOTCHIE
Sure as long as they’re
happy.

         SALVATORE
These are my friends, Benny
and Maier. Take good care of
‘em.

Benny goes for a CURVY BRUNETTE.

         BENNY
I’ll take that zaftig one…

He thrusts a few crumpled bills at Motchie, but Salvatore slaps his hand away.

         SALVATORE
Put your money away. Only
crums pay for it, right
Motchie? It’s my friend
Maier’s birthday. Get
somethin’ nice for him.

         MOTCHIE
Sure Sal…Hey Pearl, where
ya hidin’?

PEARL

a consumptive redhead in a black shift steps out of a room.

         PEARL
Where ya think?

         SALVATORE
(gives Maier a shove)
What are you waitin’ for?
Go, have a good time…

Maier walks timidly down the hall, turning to protest:

         MAIER
But it ain’t my birthday.

INT. PEARL’S ROOM. DAY.

An old iron bedstead, rumpled sheets. Maier watches shyly as Pearl lights an oil lamp. A reddish glow spreads through the room.

         PEARL
So how old are you?

         MEYER
I told ya. It ain’t my
birthday.

All business, Pearl pulls her shift over her head.

         PEARL
You gotta get a little
closer, or it don’t work
so good…

Meyer sits next to her. She tousles his hair.

         PEARL (CONT’D)
This your first time?

         MEYER
Yeah…

         PEARL
Don’t be scared honey,
it’s easy…
(pushes him down onto the bed)
Mama’ll do all the work…

INT. SALVATORE’S ROOM.NIGHT.

A basement room. A bed and a rickety table. JARS and BOTTLES. Salvatore and the boys enter in the darkness.

         SALVATORE
This here’s my office.

         BENNY
You live here too?

         SALVATORE
(lights a candle)
Yeah. My old man threw me
out. I slip money to my
brother to give to my mother…

         BENNY
I had to leave Brooklyn.
Toomany guys lookin’ for
me. But I’ll go back there
one dayflippin’ gold pieces,
broads hangin’ offa me…

         SALVATORE
You still livin’ at home,
Maier?

         MAIER
Yeah.

         SALVATORE
Your mother know what
you’re doin’?

         MAIER
She gets mad. But I’m
goin’ to school for
mechanic work.

         BENNY
You ain’t gonna get a
job are you?

         MAIER
Why not? A lotta guys do
it.

         SALVATORE
That’s ‘cause they can’t
scheme like you. You think
those crums would work for
a dollar a day if they could
make thirty bucks hustlin’
crap games?

         BENNY
Everybody wants to be like
us…

         MAIER
Like us, huh. Freezin’ in
a basement with rats runnin’
around…

         SALVATORE
At least we’re on our own
and no crum is makin’ money
off our backs…My old man’s
gonna die poor.

         MAIER
Mine, too.

         SALVATORE
See what I mean? At least
we got a chance to get rich.

EXT. COUNTRY ROAD. NIGHT.

A peaceful world. Quiet, starry, leaves rustling, crickets chirping. Tom and Mary walk up to a farmhouse..

         YOUNG TOM
I’m goin’ out for football.
(makes a muscle)
That farm work’s makin’ me
real strong for the tryout

         MARY
(feels his bicep)
You’ll make the team for
sure.

         YOUNG TOM
I’m joinin’ Debating Club.
I’m gonna need public speaking
when I go into politics…

         MARY
You gonna make those long
boring speeches at the
July Fourth picnic?

         YOUNG TOM
Maybe I’ll just sing a
song…

         MARY
(laughs)
Tom Dewey, the singing
Senator.

         YOUNG TOM
(a mock song)
And if elected I will
uphold our cherished
Republican values.

         MARY
You’re a sketch, Tom. I
almost think you could
do it.
(offers her hand )
Well, thanks for walkin’
me home.

Tom moves in and “steals” a kiss. Mary laughs and pushes him away.

         MARY
Why Tom Dewey. I thought
you were such a good boy…

         YOUNG TOM
(puts his arms around her)
Only when I have to be.

This time the kiss is mutual

EXT. LOWER EAST SIDE STREET. NIGHT.

Only a year has passed. The boys are seventeen, but look older, more sure of themselves. Salvatore and Benny and are keeping“lookout” as Meyer jumps in the front seat of a Model T.

         SALVATORE
How you gonna start it, you
don’t got the key?

         MAIER
(fiddling with the wires)
Just watch the guy don’t
come out.

Sparks fly under the wheel as he makes a connection. He jumps out and turns the crank. The Model T sputters into action.

         BENNY
How’d you do that?

         MAIER
Get in.

But as they move away, the OWNER runs out, followed by THREE MEN. “Hey, where ya goin’” Maier tries to speed away, but the car bucks and stalls. Benny jumps out wielding a wrench and rushes them, swinging wildly knocking three men down. Salvatore pulls a knife and holds the other man at bay. Maier runs around and cranks the car until it starts again. Salvatore jumps in.

        MAIER
Benny!

Benny runs back and jumps into the car and it clatters away, leaving the three men lying in the street.

EXT. LIVERY STABLE. DAY’

Early morning. The place is half stable, half garage, horses on one side, MODEL T’s and STUTZ BEARCATS on the other. Benny, clothing torn, nose bloody, watches as Maier and Salvatore negotiate with a BURLY BLACKSMITH.

        BLACKSMITH
Where’d you get the car?

        MAIER
My father gave it to me
for my Bar Mitzvah, what
do you care? Fifty bucks
is a fair price.

        BLACKSMITH
I’ll give you twenty.

        SALVATORE
C’mon you’ll get two
hundred…

        BLACKSMITH
You stole this heap. I
could call a cop friend
and get it for nothin’.

Benny looks around with a casual smile; he has developed a new technique for intimidating people.

        BENNY
Better call a fireman friend,
too.

        BLACKSMITH
What for?

        BENNY
To put out the fire when
I burn this joint down
with you in it.

The Blacksmith is about to answer. Benny just shrugs.

        BENNY
Nice place you got here.

        BLACKSMITH
Okay. Fifty bucks.

        MAIER
(smells his fear)
Make it a hundred for
hollerin’ copper.

Salvatore laughs and puts his arm around the Blacksmith’s shoulders.

        SALVATORE
Make it a hundred fifty
and throw in your horse…
Partner.

EAST SIDE 1917

EXT. RAPPAPORT’S RESTAURANT.DAY
A few years later. Meyer and Benny have grown up and found their personal styles. Meyer is understated in a gray topcoat, hat pulled low. Benny is brash in a cashmere coat with a fur collar. He stops to tilt it at a rakish angle.

        MEYER
C’mon, I’m hungry…

INT. DAIRY RESTAURANT. DAY.

Noisy, crowded with ORTHODOX JEWS,GARMENT WORKERS,etc. MOTCHIE the pimp is at a table with his GIRLS. The girls wave and call “Hiya Benny…” At a round table in the back, gorging themselves on bagels and lox, are LEPKE BUCHALTER, squat and fierce and his partner GURRAH SHAPIRO, gross, thick lipped, with an uncaring stare.

        SHAPIRO
The toughest boys on the
East Side.

        BENNY
Toughest boys in the world.

        LEPKE
Wanna make some easy
money?

        MEYER
Nah, I wanna sew buttons
twelve hours a day.

        LEPKE
There’s a strike at the
Weinberg Bakery. Mr.
Weinberg is a good friend…

        MEYER
Yeah and you’re a silent
partner.

        SHAPIRO
We want you to break up
the strike, send the boys
back to work…Fifty bucks.

        MEYER
Hundred’s the goin’ rate,
Lepke.

        LEPKE
A hundred? It’s ten minutes
work.

Benny takes a bite out of Lepke’s bagel.

        MEYER
For us. Anybody else you’ll
need a mob and it’ll cost a
G note.

        BENNY
We’re savin’ you money,
Lepke.

A blustery winter day. STRIKERS shiver on a picket line, Exhorting PASSERSBY to “Pass’em by…”

A TAXI

pulls up. Meyer and Benny get out..

        BENNY
Keep the meter runnin’, we’ll
be back…

        RABINOWITZ
Meyer’s childhood friend, is
shouting instructions.

        MEYER
Rabinowitz. You the boss
here?

        RABINOWITZ
You one of Lepke’s shlammers,
Maier?

        MEYER
If I have to be. You gotta
go back to work, kid.

        RABINOWITZ
Weinberg’s profit has doubled,
but he won’t pay us a living
wage, Maier. Whaddya think of
that?

        LANSKY
I think it’s smart business
if he can get away with it
and we’re here to see that
he does…

        BENNY
Back to work baker, your
bagels are gettin’ cold…

        RABINOWITZ
You guys don’t scare me…

Benny punches the Rabinowitz flush in the face. Grabs him as he falls forward and gut punches him. The other STRIKERS run to their leader’s defense. A TOUGH STRIKER advances on Maier.

        TOUGH STRIKER
Think you can fight
thirty-five guys?

Benny leaps at the Tough Striker, knocking him to the ground, beating him with the wooden handle of his placard.

        BENNY
Now it’s thirty-four…
Who wants to try for
thirty-three?

        MEYER
Hold it Benny…
(and faces the Strikers)
You know the Golden Rule?
The guy with the gold rules.
Weinberg’s gonna win in the
end so go back to work, you
got mouths to feed.

BENNY

leans over the bleeding semi-conscious Rabinowitz and shoves a few bills in his pocket.

        BENNY
Here, take your girlfriend
out dancin’ on Ben Siegel…

INT. HAT STORE. DAY

Salvatore is loading JARS OF MORPHINE and “raviolis” of COCAINE in a hat box, then concealing them under DERBY HATS.

        OWNER
(o.s.)
Ready for the deliveries,
Salvatore?

        SALVATORE
Ready, Mr. Gordon.


EXT. ESSEX STREET. DAY


Salvatore struts happily, three hatboxes in each hand.

MOTCHIE

is standing on the corner with two cops. He steps into the shadows as the cops block Charley’s way.

        RED FACED COP
What’s in the boxes,
Tony?

        SALVATORE
Hats from the Gordon Hat
Company.

The red faced cop opens a box and comes up with a “ravioli.”

RED FACED COP
Hats, huh?

Salvatore tries to run, but the red faced cop flicks his nightstick between his feet and he goes down. The fat cop kneels on his back, pushing his face into the ground.

        FAT COP
Who told you could sell hop
around here?

        SALVATORE
Who I gotta ask?

        FAT COP
Who you think, you dumb
wop?

        SALVATORE
That pimp Motchie’s sellin’
it,too.

        RED FACED COP
(snapping on the cuffs)
Motchie’s with us. You’re
not.

        SALVATORE
Take my load. I got eight
bucks in my sock. Take it
for lettin’ me go.

        FAT COP
We’ll takin’ it for not
bustin’ your head. You’re
gonna go cool off up the
river. When you come back
maybe you’ll know how
things work.

They jerk Salvatore to his feet and start to march him away. He turns with a cold, vengeful look toward Motchie.

        SALVATORE
Yeah. I’ll know how things
work.


END ACT TWO

Next: Part 6/Act Three: Getting Some Class (Monday, 11/07/11)

In a new department the Daily Event will reoffer some of these scripts. Read them and decide: would you like to have seen this movie?

Our first script is EMPIRES OF CRIME. Seven years in development it is a six part mini-series commissioned by a broadcast network and later reacquired by a cable station.

The story is about the founders of Organized Crime, Meyer Lansky, and “Lucky” Luciano, their fifty year partnership and the empire they created. Their friendships and families, lives and loves. It is also about their implacable enemy Thomas Dewey, a young Republican attorney who built a political career prosecuting the Mob that propelled him to the NY Governor’s Mansion and almost to the White House.

*For Introduction with submission guidelines go to Oct 13.  Use Contact Us, above, for submissions.