*For Introduction with submission guidelines, Part 1 & 2 visit heywoodgould.com
*Heywood Gould is the author of 9 screenplays including "Rolling Thunder," Fort Apache, The Bronx," Boys From Brazil," and "Cocktail."
EMPIRES OF CRIME/Part 3
Act 1 (cont)
EXT. DELANCEY STREET. DAY.
ELECTION DAY. A gray drizzle cannot dampen the festivities. BANNERS reading MURPHY FOR ASSEMBLY flutter from lampposts. A BAND PLAYS. CHESTNUT VENDORS hawk their wares. POLITICOS in DERBIES with GOLD WATCH CHAINS slap backs and kiss babies.
INT. LANDING. DAY
Two men climb the stairs, chatting amiably. One is TIM SULLIVAN, the Tammany Man, the other FIORELLO LA GUARDIA, short,round, bursting with energy. La Guardia carries a bouquet, Sullivan a fresh killed turkey. They knock at a door.
The Republicans are gonna
catch up on you guys today.
Only underdogs vote in the
Ah now, we'll get the vote out.
An ITALIAN LADY opens the door. La Guardia bows.
Fiorello La Guardia, Signora,
from the Republican Party,
the party of Lincoln, Teddy
Roosevelt, the party of the
Sullivan laughs and interjects.
Don't believe him, mama. The
Republicans are rich.
Rockefeller, J.P. Morgan…
(thrusting the turkey at her)
Big Tim Sullivan.
That turkey won't get you
a fair wage…
But it'll feed your kids.
I see you've got your
husband Vittorio and three
boys here. That's five votes.
My boys is too young to vote.
Mama, we don't discriminate.
(with a scornful look at La Guardia)
We ain't sellin' fancy ideas. We're
in business to help good Democrats.
EXT. BOWERY. DAY.
A cold rain falls over the district where the streetwalkers prowl. Salvatore stands in a doorway pouring liquid opium into small jars, while little Davey keeps watch. A YOUNG PROSTITUTE, wet and shivering, stumbles in.
Hey Salvatore, I was lookin'
for you on Pell Street.
Can't help ya now, toots, I
got work to do.
Maier jumps, shivering into the storefront followed by BENNY SIEGEL, a scrawny kid with a crazy look in his eye, who looks avidly at the Prostitute.
Okay we're here.
I told ya to bring some
tough guys, not this skinny
I can take care of myself.
A WAGON rolls up and Hines shouts:
Hey you guys, no brawlin'
on Election Day. Who can
Whaddya think we're stupid?
See this list? These people
are all dead, but they like
Charley Murphy so much we're
gonna bring 'em back to life
to vote for him.
MONTAGE…The BOYS get out the vote.
A BOWERY GIN MILL…DRUNKS mumble in their beers. Salvatore and his boys burst through the swinging doors, shouting:
And drag the drunks off their stools, promising:
After you vote all the
drinks are on Mr. Charley
OUTSIDE A KOSHER RESTAURANT…Maier and Benny recruit voters in a crowd of ORTHODOX JEWS.
Two bits every time you
Two bits. Vus es two
The crowd is impressed. "A quarter…"
A BROTHEL…Maier and Benny hang back shyly as Salvatore emerges with a PROSTITUTE, pale and depleted from drugs.
I'm sick Salvatore.
Vote for Charley Murphy,
I'll give you the cure…
Suddenly, several gaudily dressed PIMPS burst out. "Where ya think you're goin'?"
Ah, we'll bring 'em right
Take a walk.
Benny jumps in and kicks him in the groin. The other pimps jump him, but Benny fights them off furiously.
Okay, Benny they had
Not 'til I say so.
Benny knocks a pimp to his knees and kicks him in the face Pulls another pimp down by his hair and slams his head into the ground. Salvatore steps back and watches in amazement.
This kid's nuts…
They call him Bugsy on
the block. Everybody's
scared of him.
But not you?
Benny's my best friend. He
wouldn't hurt me.
EXT. POLLING PLACE. DAY.
A long line of VOTERS, some illiterate, some underage, herded together by Salvatore and his boys. PRECINCT CAPTAINS with DERBIES and GOLD WATCH CHAINS, speaking Yiddish, English and Italian with thick New York accents, escort VOTERS into the booths and mark their ballots for them. " Charley Murphy's the people's choice.."
escorts an old Jewish man up to a corrupt ELECTION OFFICIAL.
What's his name?
Vus es die nommen?
(reads haltingly from
(checks off the name)
A fine Irish name.
Salvatore brings up a PROSTITUTE.
Rabbi Nathan Goldberg.
Right this way, Your Holiness...
EXT. POLLING PLACE. DAY.
As the voters emerge, Salvatore and his boys march them to the back of the line. Salvatore grabs a BOWERY LUSH.
Where ya goin, pal, you're voting
again. Everybody's votin'
EXT. ELIZABETH STREET. NIGHT.
The boy gather eagerly around Salvatore as he counts off the money from a big roll.
Twelve bucks for Benny.
Twelve for Maier. Twenty
four for me. I get double
'cause it's my proposition.
Okay. I got a proposition
ESSEX STREET. NIGHT.
Maier, Salvatore and Benny stand in the shadows watching a CRAP GAME. A YOUNG GAMBLER with a FLASHY YOUNG LADY in a low cut dress, is rolling the dice.
Gimme eight dollars I'll
give you sixteen back.
(hands him the money)
THE YOUNG GAMBLER turns to his lady friend.
Here doll, blow on these for luck.
The Young Lady bends, giving the players a good look and blows flirtatiously on the dice.
darts into the crowd, throwing the money down. The Young Gambler rolls a SEVEN.
He throws some bills back at the Young Man. Maier jumps in.
Hey Mister, what about
The Stick man looks up at the BANKER, another Italian.
Kid got lucky. Pay him off.
It's s'posed to be three to
Kid's a bookkeeper.
SALVATORE AND BENNY
are waiting in the shadows.
How did you know this guy
was gonna roll a natural?
It 's a trick. He palms the loaded
dice. While everybody's watchin'
the pretty girl he switches 'em.
Salvatore gives him an affectionate smack.
You got some eyes on you to spot this
racket. We're gonna make big money,
me and you.
Next: Part 4/Dirty Money
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, Part 1 & 2 visit heywoodgould.com
Causes Heywood Gould Supports
Leukemia and Lymphomia Association
American Cancer Society
St. Jude's Children Research Hospital