The First Scene, In Novella Form, Of The ‘Big Chill’ Homage I’m Developing

by Shelton Bumgarner

I have vowed to myself that I’m not buying Final Draft until I finish a novella of the screenplay concept I’m currently noodling with. I am a complete novice and generally have no idea what I’m doing, but here’s a glimpse of what I’ve managed to write so far. This is the first scene where people are making their way into the house where they’re going to stay for a weekend to celebrate someone’s 50th birthday. It’s not much, I know, but it’s a start. You’ve got to start somewhere.

Anyway, in my fevered imagination, I see someone like Erykah Badu or Janelle Monae playing the Gaia part. Ms. Badu is the proper age for this vision, but I’m a big fan of Ms. Monae as well. Anyway, you’re not supposed to talk about who you want to play parts, but I always do what I’m not supposed to do.

It’s just fun to daydream and it keeps me motivated to daydream about who I would want to play this or that part. But I will try to control myself. Though, my birthday is coming up on the 26th, so I guess I am allowing myself to have a little fun.

The Big Shrug
A novella by Shelton Bumgarner
Blaze Union and his Korean wife Union looked at each other and grinned. This weekend was going to be an exciting one, no matter what, given the people involved. Soon enough, as expected, the door opened and a middle-aged man wearing a red Make America Great Again hat walked in and gave each of them a hug.
“Jackson!” Union said as she did. “My, your politics sure have changed since we last met.”
Jackson Colburn mugged sheepishly as he turned to hug Blaze as well.
“Well, you know,” Jackson said. “Things change. I’ve changed. Who else is here? I looking forward to catching up.”
Jackson shook Blaze’s hand and told him happy birthday.
“You’re the first person here, but the rest right behind you,” Blaze said. “There’s an envelope on the kitchen table explaining where everything is.”
As Jackson nodded and made his way past them, a gorgeous African American woman squealed and hugged them both passionately. She kissed them each on the lips as she did.
“Gaia!” Blaze said, his eyes wide open. “You haven’t changed a bit. What have you been up to since Seoul? Last I heard you were modeling in Phuket”
“Yeah,” Gaia said in a deep, silky voice. “I’ve been up to this or that. Seoul was so long ago. I try to keep my eyes on the future, not the past. Happy birthday, baby,”
She, too, pushed past the couple on her way to the kitchen.
Soon, a middle-aged man and a much younger, stunning woman appeared at the door. The mood was significantly different. It was more somber.
“Hey, Tagger,” Blaze said shaking Tagger’s hand firmly. “I don’t think I’ve met your daughter.”
Tagger looked at the couple smiled, then looked down for a moment and laughed.
“This is Manhattan,” Tagger said. “She’s my WIFE and you know it, you old bastard .”
The two couples shared a knowing laugh and the tension was broken.
“I haven’t seen you in person in close to 20 years,” Tagger said. “You haven’t changed a bit.”
“Neither have you,” Blaze said. “You seem to have done well for yourself since then. How many times have you gotten the Vogue cover in the last few years, half a dozen times?”
Tagger looked at his wife, squeezed her hand and nodded.
“Yeah, something like that.” Tagger said. “Life isn’t a straight line, you know. But it all started in Seoul. The whole thing changed my life.”
“Well,” Union said, “it’s good to see you are doing well. Like I told the others, just go straight into the kitchen and you’ll find the information you need for the weekend.”
And with that, Tagger and Manhattan pushed pass the couple with their luggage.

Author: Shelton Bumgarner

I am the Editor & Publisher of The Trumplandia Report

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