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Peter Jackson's 1st Draft King Kong Script (1996)

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Author Topic: Peter Jackson's 1st Draft King Kong Script (1996)  (Read 652 times)
Stacy Dohm
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« on: August 25, 2007, 11:25:43 pm »

CUT TO

EXT. SKULL ISLAND JUNGLE - NIGHT

Beyond the GREAT WALl., SKULL ISLAND is like no place you've ever seen
before ...

The VOLCANIC ROCKS form a JAGGED, TORTURED LANDSCAPE of DEEP ASSES and
TOWERING CLIFFS. The vegetation is THICK, the JUNGLE DARK. ANCIENT
KNARLED TREES twist out of the ground, thick LICHEN and long MOSSES
hang form branches and TANGLED VINES. STEAM RISES from festering
SWAMPS[PS ... DEEPER into the island, the steam is VOLCANIC - hissing
out of FISSURES and BUBBLING MUD POOLS. The way light and contrast
plays on the landscape is reminiscent of the etchings of 19th century
artist Gustave Dore.

It is into this "Jurassic Park from Hell" that JACK leads DENHAM and
the party of TWENTY SAILORS. HERB is limping along with the heavy
CAMERA & TRIPOD on his shoulder.

DENHAM suddenly looses his footing and SPRAWLS ON THE GROUND ... his
EYES WIDEN at the sight of the deep KONG FOOTPRINT he has just stepped
in.

DENHAM
Holy ****! Look at the size of that!

JACK
That's your monkey, Denham.

DENHAM
Kong ...

DENHAM'S EYES meet JACK'S - he is scared. So are the SAILORS ...
everyone suddenly has their FINGERS ON THE TRIGGER, eyes nervously
scanning the THICK JUNGLE.

A NOISE! Cracking BRANCHES ... heavy FOOTSTEPS The SAILORS PANIC! The
start FIRING in ALL DIRECTIONS, the flashes from TOMMY GUNS and RIFLES,
blinding in the darkness.

JACK
(yelling))
Hey! Stop! Cut it out!

SILENCE ... Smoke drifts away from the guns as the GROUP listens for
SOUNDS ...

Like a pair of mighty trees being felled, Two DEAD prehistoric
creatures - 30 foot tall LAMBEOSAURS -suddenly topple out of the gloomy
foliage and THUD TO THE GROUND in front of the startled SAILORS!!

They warily approach the DEAD DINOSAURS ...

DENHAM
Hey! I thought these things were supposed to be extinct!

JACK
(dryly))
They are now.

JACK and the SAILORS look in awe at the bodies of the HUGE BEASTS. JACK
pulls a LEAFY BRANCH out of a LAMBEOSAUR's MOUTH.

JACK (CONT'D)
They were just tasting the berries.

DENHAM
(grunts)
Yeah? ... Well, I gave 'em a taste of American lead ... and I don't see
'em coming back for seconds!

CUT TO

EXT. NATURAL AMPHITHEATER - NIGHT

KONG climbs down into a ROCKY HOLLOW - a vine-strewn natural
AMPHITHEATER. He DROPS ANN TO THE GROUND, and stands over her, poised
on his knuckles.

ANN Looks up at KONG ... She doesn't move ... He leans over her and
ROARS! ANN suddenly scrambles to her feet and RUNS! Within seconds KONG
has

OVERTAKEN HER and blocked her path ... ANN turns and runs in the other
direction. Again KONG blocks her path - it is clear that he is playing
CAT AND MOUSE.

ANN trips on something and falls over - A HUMAN RIB-CAGE juts out of
the MUDDY GROUND. ANN sobs as she SEES ALL AROUND HUMAN BONES, some
still encased in the remnants of BRIDAL DRESS and HEAD-WEAR ...

This place is KONG'S KILLING GROUND!

KONG scoops ANN up ... lifts her TOWARDS HIS MOUTH! She SCREAMS and
struggles in his grip. His MOUTH OPENS and she KICKS and BEATS HIS
FINGERS in a seemingly hopeless attempt to fight for her life.

Suddenly ... The NATIVE HEADDRESS FALLS OFF. Her LONG BLONDE HAIR falls
onto her shoulders.

KONG suddenly pauses ... ANN is frozen - she is looking into KONG'S
EYES, trying to anticipate his next move.

ANN
(scarcely audible)
"Lullaby and good night, Go to bed and sleep tight ...
 

KONG TOUCHES HER HAIR, as if mesmerized ...

ANN (CONT'D)
Pleasant dreams until dawn."

KONG'S LIPS peel back, exposing HUGE TEETH and PINK GUMS.

KONG suddenly pulls ANN PROTECTIVELY to his breast, ROARS FieRCELY and
DISAPPEARS into the DARK JUNGLE.

CUT TO

EXT. SKULL ISLAND VISTA - DAWN

The SUN rises over the ROCKY CRAGS of SKULL MOUNTAIN.

EXT. PINNACLE VALLEY - MORNING

CLOSE ON KONG'S FOOTPRINT ... in a SANDY dried-up stream bed. JACK
looks up at the direction KONG has taken ...

The tracks head towards a SHEER CLIFF on the side of a NARROW, DRY
VALLEY, an area deep in the heart of SKULL ISLAND, dominated by
spectacular PINNACLES of STONE, jutting out of the ground like giant
fingers. The VALLEY is less than 75 feet wide, flanked by sheer,
seemingly unscalable cliffs.

JACK wipes the sweat from his brow, looking for a possible route up the
cliff. Further down the valley, DENHAM and the SAILORS are grouped
around the camera ...

CLOSE ON An ANKYLOSAUR is being PELTED WITH STONES ...

HERB is filming, whilst DENHAM and the SAILORS try to coax some action
out of the slow-witted, cow-sized DINOSAUR ... It staggers around in
confusion.

DENHAM
(frustrated)
People'il think it's a Goddamn guy in a suit!

DENHAM suddenly gets an idea ...

DENHAM (CONT'D)
 
HEY! I GOTTA GREAT IDEA! WE COULD TURN THIS PLACE INTO A HUGE AMUSEMENT
PARK SORTA LIKE CONEY ISLAND WITH DINOSAURS!
(excited)
It's a goldmine! I'll cut you boys in for twenty percent! We're gonna
be rich!

The SAILORS CHEER.

JACK
Hey!

JACK is yelling from up the valley, waving for the group to join him.

JACK (CONT'D)
This way! Come on

Frowns at JACK.

DENHAM
Let's keep this between ourselves...****'s are not included!

SAILORS LAUGH.

AT THAT MOMENT ... The GROUND TREMBLES!

The SAILORS look around - ALARMED. JACK almost loses his footing as the
ground under him literally BOUNCES. He looks up the WINDING VALLEY ...

A DUST CLOUD suddenly spills out from around the next corner ...
immediately followed by the BREATHTAKING SIGHT of a herd of TWELVE
BRONTOSAURS, RUNNING in a WILD PANIC, down the narrow valley!! A PACK
of 15 CARNOTAURS - 9 foot tall MEATEATERS - are PURSUING THEM.

Spectacular TRACKING SHOT With the STAMPEDE ... A CARNOTAURUS leaps
onto the back of a FLEEING BRONTOSAUR, causing the it to falter and
slide against the cliff. TWO MORE CARNOTAURUS leap onto the ailing
BRONTOSAUR as the rest of the pack stream past.

JACK turns and starts running! The STAMPEDING DINOSAURS are stretched
across the valley behind him, less than fifty yards away and closing!
JACK runs down the rocky slope towards DENHAM and the SAILORS - who
seem to be frozen in fear!

JACK
(yelling)
Run!

EVERYONE TURNS and FLEES! GUNS and EQUIPMENT are abandoned ... HERB
hoists the TRIPOD & CAMERA on his shoulder and limps after the others!

JACK is running as fast as he can ... he glances over his shoulder -
the WALT. Of THUNDERING BRONTOSAUR LEGS are about to ENGULF HIM! JACK
changes direction slightly, to make sure he is BETWEEN DINOSAURS ...
They overtake JACK and he suddenly finds himself in a SEA of HUGE LEGS
-like wildly pounding Redwood trees! The CARNOTAURS are snapping and
snarling at the LEGS ... They see JACK! His only hope of survival is
too stay WITHIN THE STAMPEDE, out of reach of the MEATEATERS!

PEEK is running faster than the others He is way ahead, still clutching
his TOMMY GUN ... as the STAMPEDE engulfs DENHAM and the OTHER SAILORS.

QUICK IMAGES 20 SAILORS in the SEA OF LEGS ... A SAILOR trips and is
CRUSHED UNDER FOOT. A COUPLE OF SAILORS lump clear of the BRONTOSAURS -
only to be set on by the CARNOTAURS. DENHAM .. HERB . . . SAILORS,
everyone is running madly, dodging 'BRONTOSAURS, CARNOTAURS and trying
not to trip'

A CARNOTAUR focuses on JACK ... It skillfully weaves IN BETWEEN and
UNDER BRONTOSAURS and emerges right behind JACK, it's SNAPPING JAWS
inches away from his head! JACK suddenly SIDE-STEPS, bringing the
CARNOTAUR right along side ... he SHOULDER-BARGES it SIDEWAYS - under a
BRONTOSAURS LEGS. The CARNOTAUR is instantly trampled!

PEEK is managing to stay ahead of the stampede - possibility RUNNING
FASTER than any human before him! A CARNOTAUR races out in front of the
stampede and bears down on PEEK with incredible speed! PEEK desperately
waves the TOMMY GUN back towards the CARNOTAUR ...TOWARDS THE STAMPEDE!

JACK sees it coming ...

JACK (CONT'D)
(yelling)
NO!!!

PEEK FIRES, missing the CARNOTAUR ...

... but he hits the LEAD BRONTOSAUR in the chest. The BRONTOSAUR
COLLAPSES AT FULL SPEED! It CARTWHEELS OVER, it's huge NECK and TAIL
thrashing out. The OTHER BRONTOSAURS PLOUGH INTO IT, tripping and
rolling!

JACK, DENHAM and the SAILORS suddenly find themselves in the middle of
an amazing FLESHY FREIGHT TRAIN PILE-UP! SAILORS are crushed as
BRONTOSAURS come down on top of them! A CARNOTAUR is squashed when TWO
BRONTOSAURS slam together.

JACK throws himself onto the ground, rolling against a rock as
MOUNTAINS of BRONTOSAUR TUMBLE all around him. The space of seconds,
the MIGHTY HERD of BEHEMOTHS is reduced to a VAST PILE of DEAD or
WOUNDED ANIMALS ... The CARNOTAURS immediately go to work, leaping onto
BRONTOSAURS, ripping into fleshy stomachs.

Amazingly JACK, DENHAM, HERB and at least 9 SAILORS have survived ...
however, they must now escape from the blood crazed MEATEATERS.

JACK crawls past huge HEAVING BELLY'S and TWITCHING LEGS ... he looks
around for some escape route ... He spots PEEK - desperately scrambling
up a steep rocky slope. It leads to a narrow fissure in the cliff - a
possible way out.

JACK staggers out of the DINOSAUR PILE-UP ... he turns back at the
SOUND OF LOUD HISSING - A Carnotaur is climbing over a DEAD BRONTOSAUR,
intent on JACK ... he can do nothing! The CARNOTAUR leaps ...

BAM! BAM! BAM! The CARNOTAUR is suddenly riddled with BULLETS and falls
DEAD at JACK'S FEET!

KURT hurries towards JACK clutching his TOMMY GUN!

KURT
I'LL keep the bastards at bay'.

JACK nods ... he waves at SURVIVING SAILORS that are emerging from the
PILE-UP.

JACK
(yelling)
This way!
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"All that we see or seem
Is but a dream within a dream." - Edgar Allen Poe


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