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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