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Products of Conception
by Jane Windsor

Rated: R   Genre: Drama   User Review: ****
An 18-year-old, emotionally abused girl is forced to give up her son for adoption. Driven by guilt, she convinces a doctor to sterilize her so she cannot bring any more children into the world and 'damage' them as she believes she has damaged her son. From then on, her only desire in life is to protect her son's happiness and security by keeping his identity (and the adoption) a secret. She becomes a successful writer. The father of the child, who has now gotten another woman pregnant, finds her and blackmails her. Pay up, or he will expose her son's whereabouts and identity, thereby destroying his life. The blackmail forces her to break through her wall of secrecy and shame, with life-changing consequences.


This screenplay is copyrighted to its author. All rights reserved. This screenplay may not be used or reproduced without the express written permission of the author.



FADE IN:

INT. TELEVISION STUDIO - DAY
                                                            
A bustling television studio where television interviewer
CHRISTOPHER WINTER, late 50s, self-possessed with an
aggressive edge, piercing eyes, walks towards a television
set in preparation for an interview. He is known to be the
top television interviewer in America, but looks as though
he would be more at home in a sweaty press office behind a
rickety typewriter. An ASSISTANT hurriedly sets him up with
his microphone as the program is about to air.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
      (to the assistant)
Be gentle with her back there.
Keep her calm while I'm doing the
intro. She's fragile. We don't
want her bolting.
                                                            
Assistant shoots him a look of surprise.
                                                            
                       CHRIS (CONT'D)
      (smiles)
Listen to me. She's turned me into
a mother hen.
      (beat)
Do you think I'm losing my touch?
                                                            
 
INT. TELEVISION INTERVIEW SET - DAY
                                                            
Interview in progress. Christopher Winter looks JULIA MORGAN
directly in the eyes. He is famous for his trademark ability
to see right through to the core of his guests.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
Julia, before this interview
started you told me not to pull
any punches.
      (beat)
And I won't.
                                                            
He looks down at his hands for a moment. They are brought
together like he's praying. He then raises his piercing eyes
again to burn into Julia's.
                                                            
                       CHRIS (CONT'D)
Julia, what goes through a woman's
mind at that precise moment when
she is signing away all rights to
her own baby.
      (beat)
            (MORE)

2.

                       CHRIS (cont'd)
Knowing that from that moment on
she will never see him again?
                                                            
The audience is packed but there is complete silence.
                                                            
JULIA MORGAN, 50, nervy, housewifey-looking, not
unattractive, sits bolt upright in her chair clutching a
handkerchief as though her life depends on it.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (hushed shakey
       voice)
Well, Chris, of course I can't
possibly know what goes through
the minds of other women. It's
something so ... so ... well of
course I can't possibly know that.
                                                            
Julia looks down at her handkerchief, trying to compose
herself. She then looks back up at Chris.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
      (more firmly now)
In my own case, I had no doubt
whatsoever that my baby was better
off without me.
      (pause)
I felt ... well I knew I wasn't
good enough for him. He was so
precious.
      (beat)
He deserved much better than me.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
Why Julia? Why were you not good
enough for him?
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (sighs)
It's not the kind of thing that
fits into a neat explanation. It's
not the kind of thing you can ...
      (sighs)
I was living in one tiny room with
a shared bathroom down the hall. I
had a casual low-paying job. There
were no creches in those days. I
mean, we're talking 30 years ago.
Who would look after him while I
worked? I had no family support.
      (beat)
My mother hated me.
      (beat)
            (MORE)

3.

                       JULIA (cont'd)
I was alone. I had ... nothing to
offer.
      (beat)
Only a miserable life.
      (pause)
A life without hope.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
I see, well ...
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (edgy)
No you don't see. You can't
possibly see. It's like I said,
there are no neat explanations.
      (sighs)
I'm sorry. I'm sorry. The main
thing was ... the thing was ... I
was afraid I'd do to him what I'd
had done to me. I was afraid.
      (beat)
I knew he'd be better off without
me ... that he'd have a better
life without me.
      (to the audience)
I didn't want to spoil his chance
at happiness you see.
      (back to Chris)
He was better off without me.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
      (very carefully)
You say you were afraid to do to
him what you'd had done to you.
Tell me about that.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (edgy)
It's not relevant. It has nothing
to do with anyone.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
I'm sorry, I didn't mean to ...
                                                            
                       JULIA
No, no, it's okay, I'm sorry, it's
okay.
                                                            
Julia breathes out softly through pursed lips. Looks down
again at her handkerchief and twists it around her finger.
                                                            

4.

                       JULIA (CONT'D)
Well, Chris, I was destroyed ...
inside. I had no self esteem, no
self worth.
      (beat)
I'd never been allowed to grow any
you see.
      (beat)
I just felt like ... I just felt
like the worst human being that
had ever been born. I felt I was,
well, I was totally worthless ...
useless.
      (beat)
No better than something you'd
scrape off the bottom of your
shoe.
      (pause)
So I was afraid I would destroy my
baby too. That I'd bring him down
with me.
                                                            
Julia is dangerously close to breaking down.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
      (walking on
       eggshells)
It's okay Julia, it's okay.
      (pause)
So, your baby was being looked
after by the father's family,
temporarily, or so you thought.
You are ... what ... 18 years of
age?
                                                            
She nods shamefully.
                                                            
                       CHRIS (CONT'D)
You are trying to get your life
together so you can get your baby
back.
      (beat)
You'd found a job, albeit a low
paying job. You had a room,
albeit a tiny space, but hey, you
were getting things together as
best as you could.
      (beat)
You then get a phone call from
some lawyer telling you to come in
to the office ...
                                                            
 

5.

INT. LAWYER'S OFFICE 30 YEARS AGO - DAY
                                                            
FLASHBACK - Julia sits opposite MR. HARRIS, the lawyer. He
is fatherly-looking but with a sinister undercurrent. Fat.
Late 50s. Obviously-dyed brown hair. Wears an expensive suit
but still looks grungy.
                                                            
                       JULIA
But they can't do that! How could
they do that? It's illegal for
Christ's sake.
                                                            
She stares at him. He doesn't reply.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
Well it is ... isn't it?
                                                            
Mr. Harris shifts uncomfortably and clears his throat.
                                                            
                       MR. HARRIS
Julia, these are good people.
Great people. Professionals. They
have it all. A nice home. A good
income. Good Christian people
Julia.
      (beat)
The only thing they haven't got is
a baby.
      (beat)
And that's the only thing in the
world they want.
                                                            
He hones in for the kill.
                                                            
                       MR. HARRIS (CONT'D)
Your son ... er David ... David
loves them as much as they love
him. He's happy Julia. He has a
home Julia, a lovely home. And a
great future.
                                                            
                       JULIA
What! All this time they've been
lying to me that everything is
fine. As soon as I get on my feet
I can have David back. And all
this time they've been secretly
arranging to ... to take him away
from me. To have him adopted?
                                                            
The enormity of the situation hits her.
                                                            

6.

                       JULIA (CONT'D)
My God! And when it's all done and
over with I finally get to hear
about it so I can sign the papers?
      (screams)
How could this happen without my
even signing any papers?
                                                            
                       MR. HARRIS
      (patronizingly)
Well now that's exactly why we're
here today Julia.
                                                            
                       JULIA
Fuck you!
                                                            
She flings her chair back and starts pacing.
                                                            
                       MR. HARRIS
Julia calm down. You have to calm
down.
                                                            
She stands still and stares at him in disbelief.
                                                            
                       JULIA
No I will not calm down you
arsehole. Don't you dare tell me
to calm down!
                                                            
Mr. Harris leans across the desk towards Julia.
                                                            
                       MR. HARRIS
      (carefully)
Now look Julia, these people know
the legal system first-hand from a
high standpoint if you catch my
drift. A very high standpoint
indeed. Like I said, these are
professional people.
                                                            
Julia spreads both hands on the desk in front of her and
leans forward until he's eating her spit.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (disgusted)
And that makes it okay for them to
steal babies does it Mr. Harris?
Professional baby stealers are
they?
                                                            
He leans back in his chair, visibly shaken by her intensity.
                                                            

7.

                       MR. HARRIS
      (softly)
Julia, I'm sorry to have to say
this, but David doesn't even
remember who you are. As far as he
is concerned, they are his mom and
dad.
                                                            
Julia falls back into her chair and stares at him
dumbfounded.
                                                            
Mr. Harris leans more towards her.
                                                            
                       MR. HARRIS (CONT'D)
      (softly but
       deliberately)
He doesn't even remember who you
are Julia. Don't be selfish Julia.
If you love David, I mean really
love him, then you'll put him
first. That's what a real mom
would do Julia. A real mom would
not, could not be selfish.
      (beat)
And to take him away from his home
and family now would be just plain
selfish.
      (beat)
To take him away from the best
life a kid could have would be
just plain selfish.
      (beat)
Now I know you can see that Julia.
I know you can.
                                                            
She starts to break down.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (in a whisper)
But ... he's my son.
                                                            
                       MR. HARRIS
      (sighs impatiently)
So what you are going to do Julia?
What are you going to do?
      (beat)
Break down their door? Grab him?
Run away with him?
      (beat)
And let's say you do that Julia.
Let's just say you do. Then what
Julia? What would you do with him
then?
      (beat)
            (MORE)

8.

                       MR. HARRIS (cont'd)
What could you possibly offer him
Julia?
                                                            
In a terrible silence, Mr. Harris carefully pushes the
paperwork towards Julia and slowly stands up.
                                                            
                       MR. HARRIS (CONT'D)
      (quietly)
I'm going to leave you alone to
think things through. Do the right
thing Julia. Do what's best for
David.
      (beat)
Do what's best for him.
                                                            
Julia slowly picks the papers up, then puts them back down.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (voice shaking)
Who are these people? Who are
they?
                                                            
                       MR. HARRIS
      (softly)
Now you know I can't tell you that
Julia. You already know that,
right?
                                                            
Mr. Harris slowly walks out of the room leaving Julia alone.
She sits bolt upright, staring ahead, numb. Slowly, her head
falls forward as she starts to sob.
                                                            
 
INT. TELEVISION STUDIO - DAY
                                                            
PRESENT TIME - Back to interview. Julia is flushed as she
re-lives the day she signed away her baby. But she very
definitely does not what anyone's pity and fights to regain
her composure.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
      (softly)
How could it happen? How indeed?
But it did happen to you Julia. To
you and your baby. I don't think
anybody watching this would blame
you for signing those papers
Julia. You were simply a young
mother ... still a child yourself
... trying to do the best for your
son.
                                                            

9.

                       JULIA
      (looking down at
       her handkerchief)
But I did blame myself. Terribly.
      (beat)
For years.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
      (carefully)
As if you hadn't been through
enough already, that was really
just the beginning for you Julia.
      (beat)
That blame.
      (beat)
That guilt that overwhelmed you.
Where did it take you next Julia?
Can you tell us where it took you
next?
                                                            
 
INT. DOCTOR'S OFFICE 30 YEARS AGO - DAY
                                                            
FLASHBACK - DR. STEVENS, young-looking 40s, crisp, all teeth
and tan, all business, crappy bedside manner, arrogant.
                                                            
                       DR. STEVENS
      (brusquely)
Out of the question Julia. You're
20 years old for God's sake.
There's no way you're going to get
any doctor to agree to sterilize
you, no matter how much you may
think you want it right now.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (irritated)
Dr. Stevens, I have no doubt that
you would have no problem giving
someone my age multiple abortions
because ...
      (she makes the
       'quotes' sign)
it is her body and she has the
right to choose.
                                                            
Dr. Stevens shifts uncomfortably in his chair. An
'hysterical' girl is the last thing he needs.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
Well, don't I have the right to
choose too?
                                                            

10.

                       DR. STEVENS
I think we're talking apples and
oranges here Julia. A therapeutic
abortion is definitely a woman's
right if she chooses not to bring
a baby into the world.
                                                            
                       JULIA
Well, most of the time she also
had the right to choose not to get
pregnant in the first place.
                                                            
She stares at him waiting for him to reply. He doesn't.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
      (raising her voice)
Well didn't she?
                                                            
                       DR. STEVENS
      (groans)
Julia, let's not turn this into a
...
                                                            
                       JULIA
No! Hear me out! All I'm asking
is the right to choose never to
get pregnant.
      (beat)
Ever again!
                                                            
                       DR. STEVENS
Look Julia, given your age ...
                                                            
                       JULIA
Oh God! There he goes with the age
again.
      (beat)
Okay Dr. Stevens. I'm pregnant.
      (beat)
I don't want it.
      (beat)
Can you kill it for me please?
                                                            
                       DR. STEVENS
Well if that were the case Julia,
then we'd have something to
discuss.
                                                            
                       JULIA
Ha! So I actually have to BE
pregnant before we have something
to discuss.
                                                            

11.

                       DR. STEVENS
      (sighing heavily)
We would be able to discuss
evacuating the products of
conception.
                                                            
Julia's mouth drops open. 'Products of conception?'
                                                            
                       JULIA
So ... if it's not wanted ... it's
a 'Product of Conception?'
      (pause)
So ... what is it if it IS wanted?
                                                            
                       DR. STEVENS
      (irritated)
Stop it Julia. I'm not going to
allow you to turn this into a
political debate. You are angry
right now. You are simply not
thinking logically.
      (pause)
You have lost your child. You
don't want to bring anymore
children into the world because
you ...
      (clears his throat)
and I use your own words here
Julia ...
      (clears his throat
       again)
because you are not even raising
the one you already have.
      (pause)
I can understand how you must
feel.
                                                            
                       JULIA
Oh sure you can.
                                                            
                       DR. STEVENS
      (snaps)
So just take the pill like
everyone else Julia. It's that
simple.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (pleading)
Dr. Stevens the pill makes me
sick. It makes me vomit.
      (beat)
And you have to believe me when I
tell you I will not ever want to
have another child as long as I
            (MORE)

12.

                       JULIA (cont'd)
live. Never!
      (beat)
So what do I do?
      (beat)
Put crap in my body for the rest
of my life to stop myself from
getting pregnant?
                                                            
                       DR. STEVENS
      (flippant)
Have you ever thought of the
'morning after' pill.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (irritated)
Well, for people who can't be
bothered to take the 'night
before' pill, that may seem
appealing.
      (beat)
I would prefer a 'no pill' kind of
situation. Call me picky.
                                                            
He groans.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
My choice, right Dr. Stevens.
      (beat)
So what are you going to do about
that choice that I make for my
body?
                                                            
                       DR. STEVENS
      (stands up)
That's enough! I'm not on trial
here Julia and I won't have you
...
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (pissed off)
Oh so I don't have a choice over
my own body. Not really. Not
unless that choice means I kill
another life?
      (beat)
So how about I choose to make
damned sure I don't make another
life in the first place.
      (beat)
That way I don't have to choose to
kill it?
      (pause)
            (MORE)

13.

                       JULIA (cont'd)
Right?
                                                            
                       DR. STEVENS
      (exasperated)
Julia, we're not talking about
killing life! It's not a life!
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (quietly)
Then what is it Dr. Stevens? You
tell me. What do you call
something that lives but isn't a
life?
      (pause)
Oh yeah, a 'Product of
Conception.'
      (beat)
Well you call it whatever the hell
you want to help you sleep nights
Dr. Stevens.
      (beat)
Me? I call it a life.
      (beat)
And I'm against murder.
      (getting louder)
And you have to believe me when I
tell you I will not, ever, make
another baby as long as I live.
      (pointed diction)
I have made my choice Dr. Stevens.
                                                            
She stares at him intently.
                                                            
There's an uneasy silence between them. Dr. Stevens sits
back down and looks Julia directly in the eyes. She meets
his gaze head on. He makes a brief note in her chart and
slams it shut.
                                                            
                       DR. STEVENS
Alright Julia. Here's the deal.
You have one year to think this
over. If you come back in one year
and you still want this, then I'll
consider sterilizing you.
      (beat)
But know this young lady. Once
it's done, it's done for good. No
going back.
      (beat)
Don't forget to factor that in
when you do your thinking.
                                                            

14.

He gets up and makes for the door, but suddenly remembers
something and turns round to face her. He is smug, as though
he has found the one thing that will deter her.
                                                            
                       DR. STEVENS (CONT'D)
Oh, and of course I'll need a
psychiatric assessment before I
make my final decision.
                                                            
He marches out of the office smiling and leaves the door
wide open. The nurse pokes her head in hesitantly.
                                                            
                       NURSE 1
      (to Julia)
So ... are we all done here?
                                                            
 
INT. HOSPITAL 1 YEAR LATER - DAY
                                                            
Julia is in a hospital bed being wheeled down a hospital
corridor. She is prepped for OR, with cap, hospital gown, IV
drip, etc. A nurse walks beside the bed wheeling the IV
drip.
                                                            
                       NURSE 2
      (in a loud whisper)
Look, I know this is none of my
business dear. But it's not too
late to change your mind you know.
You don't have to go through with
this if you're not sure. If you
have any doubts ...
                                                            
                       JULIA
Don't! Just don't okay?
                                                            
                       NURSE 1
But it's so final dear. I mean,
sterilization at your age. It's
just so ...
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (shouting)
I said don't! Stop it!
                                                            
Dr. Stevens meets them at the OR entrance.
                                                            
                       DR. STEVENS
Everything okay here?
                                                            
He looks down at Julia and takes her hand, showing an
uncharacteristic display of tenderness.
                                                            

15.

                       DR. STEVENS
Well Julia, shall we do this?
                                                            
 
INT. HOSPITAL - DAY
                                                            
Julia packs up her hospital bag and leaves her hospital
bedside. She slowly walks down the corridor towards the main
exit. NURSE 2 who tried to persuade her not to go ahead with
the sterilization is at the nurse's station with NURSE 3.
They watch her with a mixture of pity and disapproval,
tutting and shaking their heads as she walks away. She
stares fixedly ahead as she walks, as if she'll break apart
if she looks back.
                                                            
 
INT. TELEVISION STUDIO - DAY
                                                            
PRESENT TIME - Back to interview. The audience is silent.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
Wow. Well Julia, so here you are
... what ... 20 years of age? You
have had a child who has been
adopted out. And now you have just
had yourself sterilized because
you didn't want to ever bring
another child into the world when
...
      (pause)
as you yourself tell it Julia ...
      (pause)
when you weren't raising the one
you already had.
      (a beat)
Is that how it was Julia? I just
want to be absolutely clear we are
understanding your side of things
here.
                                                            
Julia almost smiles at his somber tone.
                                                            
                       JULIA
That's right Chris. I absolutely
did not want to have anymore
children.
      (to the audience)
Well how could I? What would
David think? How could I raise
another child when I could not
raise him? It would be
unconscionable.
      (to Chris)
Well, at least, that's what I
            (MORE)

16.

                       JULIA (cont'd)
thought.
      (pause)
And it was more than that somehow.
A lot more. It was ... well, I
felt I'd done enough damage
already and I didn't want to take
any chances that I'd do more.
      (pause)
I didn't want to do any more
damage.
                                                            
Chris is momentarily stunned. The audience is silent.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
What then? What then Julia?
                                                            
                       JULIA
Well, it took a long while. A lot
of drifting. A lot of limbo times.
But eventually I just got on with
my life as best as I could.
      (beat)
What else could I do?
                                                            
 
EXT. A WORKING CLASS AMERICAN STREET, 15 YEARS AGO - DAY
                                                            
FLASHBACK - Snow falls on the small rancher houses. We enter
one particular house. Julia's house. She's grabbing her
coat and gulping down a cup of coffee at the same time.
                                                            
                       JULIA
Okay I'm off! Don't forget to
take the meatloaf out of the
freezer. Love you!
                                                            
She rushes out and slams the door.
                                                            
ROBERT MORGAN, late 30s, solid build from years of being a
laborer, beer gut, medium height, starting to bald, has the
look of a typical 'nice guy' but with an edge. He is
clearing the breakfast dishes away.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
      (quietly to
       himself)
Love you too hon. Have a good
one. God knows, one of us has to.
                                                            
He throws a plate in the sink.
                                                            

17.

                       ROBERT (CONT'D)
Ah the hell with it!
                                                            
He grabs his jacket from the back of the kitchen chair and
storms out of the house.
                                                            
 
INT. NURSING HOME 15 YEARS AGO - DAY
                                                            
Julia, a resident care attendant, marches briskly down a
corridor giving an offhand wave to MARILYN, her friend and
co-worker, as she walks.
                                                            
                       MARILYN
Hey! Who pissed in your
cornflakes? Don't I even get a hi
Marilyn, nice to see ya Marilyn?
                                                            
Julia turns to Marilyn, but keeps walking, backwards.
                                                            
                       JULIA
Got to see Ralph before I start my
shift. Only got a few minutes. See
you at break.
                                                            
Disappears around the corner towards Ralph's office.
                                                            
                       JULIA (OC)
Hi Marilyn. Nice to see ya
Marilyn.
                                                            
                       MARILYN
      (laughing)
Blow it out yer arse Julia.
                                                            
RALPH, 60s, nicotine fingers, wizened looking, crusty but
kind hearted, sits behind a messy desk drinking coffee from
a huge mug. Sees Julia in the doorway and groans.
                                                            
                       RALPH
Don't you ever knock?
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (in mock
       indignation)
I did knock Ralph. You were
mid-guzzle and didn't hear, that's
all.
                                                            
                       RALPH
      (stifling a smile)
Yeah yeah. Quite the comedian.
What's up, dare I ask?
                                                            

18.

                       JULIA
Ralph, I need an advance.
                                                            
                       RALPH
Oh come on Julia, you're still in
hock on last month's pay. You're
going to get me fired!
                                                            
                       JULIA
Robert got layed off again. You
know how the logging industry is
Ralph.
      (beat)
Unemployment still owe him money
from his last claim. Soon as he
gets that, I'll settle up.
      (beat)
I swear Ralph.
      (beat)
I won't ask again. I swear.
                                                            
                       RALPH
Oh you swear do you? Oh well that
makes everything just dandy.
      (groans)
This is the last time Julia. Don't
ask again. I mean it!
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (relieved)
I owe ya Ralph.
                                                            
                       RALPH
      (as she leaves)
Yeah right, who doesn't?
                                                            
 
INT. NURSING HOME LOUNGE - DAY
                                                            
Julia is supervising an activities session. Residents are
sitting in a circle with Julia throwing a large ball from
one resident to another. Old time big band music is playing
in the background.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (throwing the ball)
Good job Leona. Your arms are
getting stronger. Now throw it
back to me.
                                                            
Julia catches the ball and throws it to the next resident.
                                                            

19.

                       JULIA (CONT'D)
Great job Bob. Now can you throw
it back to me? Oh come on now
Bob, just give it a whirl.
                                                            
As the activities session is in full swing Julia sees Robert
standing in the doorway, watching her. She signals five
minutes with her hands.
                                                            
 
EXT. OUTSIDE THE BACK DOOR OF THE NURSING HOME - DAY
                                                            
Julia gives Robert a quick kiss.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (stepping back)
Have you been drinking?
                                                            
                       ROBERT
      (defensively)
Just a quick one. Jesus Julia,
I've got to do something to keep
me sane.
      (lightens up)
How'd it go with Ralph?
                                                            
                       JULIA
He said yes, but this is the last
time Robert. I can't ask him
again.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
      (murmurs)
Good ol' Ralph.
                                                            
                       JULIA
Yeah.
                                                            
Uneasy silence. Julia takes a cigarette out of her pocket.
Robert lights it. Julia draws on the cigarette and blows it
out.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
Thanks.
                                                            
Robert fidgets and avoids looking at Julia. Julia takes a
long drag of her cigarette, all the while watching Robert's
face. She blows the smoke out slowly, squinting up at him.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
What's up?
                                                            

20.

                       ROBERT
Nothing.
                                                            
She stares at him, not letting him off the hook.
                                                            
                       ROBERT (CONT'D)
It's nothing.
      (beat)
Really.
      (beat)
Forget it.
                                                            
                       JULIA
Aw come on Robert. Don't do this.
I'm not in the mood.
      (beat)
What is it?
                                                            
                       ROBERT
Well ... I know you don't want to
hear this again ... but it's
probably a lucky break we can't
have kids.
                                                            
He sees Julia wince but carries on anyway.
                                                            
                       ROBERT (CONT'D)
I mean, how in hell would we
support them? You on the casual
list. Me never knowing from one
week to the next if I'm going to
get layed off.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (snaps)
You mean it's a lucky break I
can't have kids don't you Robert?
Why don't you just say what you
mean? I can't have kids, right
Robert?
                                                            
                       ROBERT
Jesus Julia, no need to go
overboard ...
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (cutting him off)
Look Robert, for the last
goddamned time, what I did before
I met you is none of your
business.
      (beat)
Got it?
                                                            

21.

                       ROBERT
Yeah but you were so young. To
have something like that done.
Something so ... final. I can't
imagine ...
                                                            
                       JULIA
Well it's not for you to imagine
Robert. And get this, I haven't
regretted it for one minute. Not
one single minute.
      (beat)
How in hell could I bring more
kids into this godforsaken world
when I couldn't even raise the one
I had?
                                                            
She glares at him.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
If I had it to do over, I'd do
exactly the same thing again.
      (beat)
Even if I knew I was going to meet
you Robert.
      (beat)
Now do you get that?
                                                            
She stumps her cigarette out and starts towards the door. As
she pushes the door open she glances back at him.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
I was honest with you right from
the start Robert. Remember?
      (beat)
And anyway, what do you want?
      (beat)
A wife or a mare?
                                                            
 
INT. JULIA'S HOUSE - NIGHT
                                                            
Julia lets herself into a dark house.
                                                            
                       JULIA
Hi.
                                                            
No answer.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
      (louder)
I said hi. Anybody home? Robert?
                                                            

22.

No answer. No lights on. She realizes she's alone.
                                                            
She sighs and wanders from room to room, putting lights on,
closing curtains, etc. Still calling Robert's name even
though she knows it's futile. Her CAT, Millie, black,
overweight, comes to greet her.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
Oh hey Mills.
                                                            
Julia picks Millie up and nuzzles her.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
Had a good day?
                                                            
She kisses Millie's head.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
Nah, me neither.
                                                            
She gently puts Millie down and walks towards the kitchen.
Millie follows her.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
No use whining Millie. Nobody
listens anyway.
      (beat)
You hungry darlin?
                                                            
 
INT. JULIA'S LIVING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
The house is in darkness. Julia sits alone in the living
room smoking a cigarette. Robert lets himself in the front
door, doesn't see her, and walks straight past her on his
way upstairs. He's drunk.
                                                            
                       JULIA
Nice of you to drop by.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
      (startled)
Oh Jesus Julia you scared the shit
out of me.
                                                            
He laughs a drunken laugh and staggers towards her, leaning
on the doorway.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
Went down to the bar for a quick
one and bumped into some of the
guys. You know how it is.
                                                            

23.

                       JULIA
No, I don't know Robert. But I'm
sure you're going to tell me.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
For Christ's sake Julia, ease off.
                                                            
                       JULIA
Just showing an interest Robert.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
Aw come on Julia. It hasn't been
easy.
      (beat)
Nothing ever gets any easier.
      (beat)
I don't know how much longer I can
...
                                                            
                       JULIA
You can what Robert? Spit it out
Robert, you know you want to.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
      (in a whiny voice)
Oh you know Julia. No money. No
fun. No ... no ...
                                                            
                       JULIA
No kids Robert? Why don't you just
say it. No kids. See. It's easy
once you get the hang of it
Robert. No kids. Now you say it.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
Don't Julia. Not now. Just don't.
Ah hell I'm going to bed.
                                                            
He turns around and stumbles towards the stairs.
                                                            
                       JULIA
Well, you being a good Catholic
boy and all. Surrounded by all
your hundreds of nieces and
nephews.
                                                            
Robert turns around and glares at her.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
Shut up Julia! Just shut up!
                                                            

24.

                       JULIA
Well it can't be easy for you
Robert. With your huge family.
Babies everywhere. Every time you
turn around someone else drops
another one, just for the hell of
it. And here's poor you stuck with
a useless barren woman.
      (beat)
Must be awful for you Robert.
                                                            
He lurches towards her and raises his hand.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
Shut up bitch!
                                                            
Julia flinches and puts her hand in front of her face.
Robert lets his hand drop.
                                                            
                       ROBERT (CONT'D)
Ah fuck it.
                                                            
He stumbles towards the stairs and starts climbing them.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
      (mumbling)
Just shut up. A man needs a bit of
peace in his own house for God's
sake. Shut the fuck up.
                                                            
 
INT. THE LOCAL BAR 2 YEARS LATER - NIGHT
                                                            
Julia with Marilyn and a group of their friends sit around a
table drinking beer from the bottle. They are drunk. A live
country band is performing and people are up dancing.
                                                            
                       MARILYN
Well, good riddance, that's what I
say. Good riddance to bad rubbish.
                                                            
                       THE GROUP
      (raising their
       bottles)
Yeah! Good riddance. Here's to it.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (half-heartedly)
Yeah, here's to it.
                                                            
                       MARILYN
Oh come on darlin. The guy was a
complete nut job. One minute the
good little Catholic boy. Next
            (MORE)

25.

                       MARILYN (cont'd)
minute he's giving you a black
eye. Never knew when he was gonna
snap.
      (pause)
And the way he rubbed your nose in
it that you couldn't have ...
well, you know what I mean hon.
                                                            
                       JULIA
Yeah, I know what you mean. But
maybe he had a point. Maybe if we
could have had ... could have had
kids, maybe things would have been
different.
                                                            
                       MARILYN
      (groaning)
Aw com on Julia!
                                                            
                       THE GROUP
Yeah Julia, come on! Jesus!
                                                            
                       MARILYN
The guy was a loser. What kind of
father do you think he would have
made anyway? You deserve better
kiddo.
                                                            
She notices a cute guy walking up to the table.
                                                            
                       MARILYN (CONT'D)
Speaking of which ...
                                                            
The guy smiles at Julia.
                                                            
                       CUTE GUY
      (to Julia)
Hey.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (embarrassed)
Hey.
                                                            
The group nudge each other.
                                                            
                       CUTE GUY
So, would you like to dance?
                                                            
                       JULIA
Oh no, no thanks. I'm not in the
mood.
                                                            

26.

                       CUTE GUY
Well, how about a beer. Can I get
you a beer?
                                                            
                       MARILYN
She'll take the beer mister. It
might give her dutch courage to
get up and dance!
                                                            
They all laugh as the country music swells.
                                                            
 
INT. JULIA'S BEDROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Julia is drunk from her night out with the girls. She takes
a bottle of beer up to bed and at first she is laughing as
she remembers the night. Then, the laughter turns to tears
and she cries herself to sleep.

Next we see her tossing and turning in the throes of a
nightmare which comprises a MONTAGE of abusive childhood
memories.

A bitterly jealous MOTHER telling her pretty young daughter,
Julia, that her father hates her. He has always hated her
and always would. She says the words in a soft, kindly
voice, making them more evil.

A FATHER who has become a vicious drunk cruelly taunting a
young Julia, telling her she is ugly and stupid and good for
nothing. He leans down and puts his face up close to hers.
He reeks of booze and belligerence. He tells her to wipe
that ugly look off her face or he'll wipe it off for her.
She is terrified and crying.

A young Julia desperately trying to win her father's
approval. She shows him a story she wrote in class that
earned her an A grade. He slaps her and calls her a liar.
He tells her that she copied it out of a book because she is
too stupid to have written it herself. When she protests he
slaps her again and again and makes her 'confess' that she
copied it out of a book.

Julia at 17 being forced to leave home with nothing but a
plastic grocery store bag containing her meagre belongings.
Her mother watching her leave, cold like stone.
                                                            
 
INT. JULIA'S RENTED ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
FINAL NIGHTMARE - Julia, 17, sits alone on a single bed in a
scruffy room. She's staring in front of her, wild eyed. She
has emptied a bottle of pills on the bed beside her. She has

27.

a large glass of water in her hand.

She picks up some pills.
                                                            
Very methodically, she puts the pills in her mouth. She
raises the glass and takes a gulp.

She picks up more pills and puts them in her mouth. She
raises the glass and takes a gulp.

She starts to weep gently.

She picks up more pills and puts them in her mouth. She
raises the glass. This time, something stops her. The few
remaining shards of her broken soul somehow get through to
her.

Time stands still for a beat.

She spits the pills out, throws the glass across the room
and scatters the pills off the bed.

She runs into the bathroom and kneels over the toilet.

She thrusts her fingers down her throat and heaves and sobs
violently.
                                                            
 
INT. JULIA'S BEDROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Julia is sobbing as she awakens from her nightmares about
her childhood. She sits up in bed and feels her wet cheeks.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (through tears)
Bastard. Bitch.
                                                            
 
INT. TELEVISION STUDIO - DAY
                                                            
PRESENT TIME - Back to the interview. The audience is
silent.

Christopher Winter sits silent for a long moment, looking
into Julia's face.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
Those nightmares weren't just
dreams, were they Julia?
                                                            
Julia sits quietly for a moment. Full of dignity.
                                                            

28.

                       JULIA
      (very softly)
Unfortunately no, they were not
just dreams.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
Was that what you meant earlier
when you said you didn't want to
do to David what you'd had done to
you?
                                                            
                       JULIA
Something along those lines, yes.
      (pause)
It is so ... so easy to destroy a
child. To destroy a child from the
inside.
      (sighs)
Then of course we blame them when
they're still broken in adulthood.
Like it's their own fault.
      (beat)
Like, by some miracle, they should
be healed just because they became
adults.
      (pause)
I mean, if a person had two broken
legs nobody would expect them to
run a marathon. But when you're
broken inside, nobody can see the
break.
      (pause)
I mean, you look absolutely normal
on the outside. No broken limbs.
      (pause)
So they expect you to carry on
like you're not broken ... and of
course you try ... God knows you
try.
      (beat)
If only to hide the shame you
feel.
                                                            
Julia looks at the audience, searching their faces.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
      (to Chris)
I was very young ... and I was
broken.
      (beat)
I was afraid I'd break him too.
                                                            

29.

Chris looks at the audience. They are silent. A lady dabs at
her eyes with a tissue.
                                                            
Chris smiles gently at Julia.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
But those nightmares on that
particular night served as a
turning point for you Julia. A
very important turning point ...
                                                            
 
EXT. JULIA'S PORCH - DAY
                                                            
FLASHBACK - It is dawn. The morning after the nightmares.
Julia sits nursing a coffee and a cigarette. Her cheeks are
still wet and her eyes are red and swollen. She sits and
stares up at the dawn sky, deep in her own thoughts.
                                                            
 
INT. JULIA'S BEDROOM CUPBOARD - DAY
                                                            
It is still dawn time. Julia, still in her pyjamas, takes
down a large box from the cupboard shelf.
                                                            
 
INT. JULIA'S LIVING ROOM - DAY
                                                            
Early morning. Julia, still in her pyjamas, is going through
the contents of the box. She comes across the story she
wrote as a child, the one in her nightmare. We see the 'A'
grade on the front page.
                                                            
                       JULIA
I wrote it you bastard. I wrote
it, I wrote it, I wrote it.
Bastard!
                                                            
Julia takes a fat file out of the box. She sits back on her
couch and starts thumbing through it. Millie, the cat, jumps
on her lap and purrs.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
      (to Millie)
Imagine your stupid mother
thinking she could actually write
something someone would actually
want to read.
      (beat)
Your stupid mother Millie.
      (beat)
What a joke.
                                                            
 

30.

INT. JULIA'S KITCHEN - DAY
                                                            
Julia is about to throw the file of papers in the garbage.
Millie stares up at her intently.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (to Millie)
What? You don't think I should
chuck it? But it's just garbage
written by a stupid person Mills,
you know that.
                                                            
Millie keeps staring at her.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
      (laughing)
Oh Millie ...
                                                            
She pats Millie.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
Okay ... let's look it over. We
could both use a laugh.
                                                            
 
INT. JULIA'S KITCHEN - DAY
                                                            
It is still morning, Julia is still in her pyjamas. She sits
at her kitchen table typing on an old typewriter. She's
completely engrossed in her work. Millie sleeps on a folded
blanket on the table by Julia's side.
                                                            
 
INT. JULIA'S KITCHEN - NIGHT
                                                            
Julia is still working, in her pyjamas.
                                                            
 
INT. JULIA'S KITCHEN - DAY
                                                            
It is dawn the next day. Julia is still working, still in
her pyjamas.
                                                            
 
INT. JULIA'S LIVING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Julia is sleeping on her back on the couch with Millie lying
asleep on her stomach. A pile of papers are neatly stacked
on the coffee table by her side.
                                                            
 

31.

INT. NURSING HOME - DAY
                                                            
It is 6 months later. Julia is helping MONA, a resident, eat
her lunch in the dining room. The resident has had a stroke
and is drooling down the left side of her mouth.
                                                            
                       JULIA
You're doing so well Mona. Just a
little bit more to keep your
strength up, hm?
                                                            
Marilyn walks over to Julia and Mona.
                                                            
                       MARILYN
      (to Julia)
I'll take it from here kiddo.
There's a call for you in the
staff room. Some agent.
                                                            
She mouths 'Go' to Julia.
                                                            
                       MARILYN (CON'T)
You don't mind do you Mona?
                                                            
 
INT. STAFF ROOM AT NURSING HOME - DAY
                                                            
Julia picks up the phone.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (into the phone)
Hello? Yes, yes this is she ...
                                                            
 
INT. TELEVISION STUDIO - DAY
                                                            
PRESENT TIME - Back to the interview.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
So, you get a call from an agent,
telling you what?
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (smiling)
Well, telling me he liked my work
and wanted to pitch it to the
studios.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
      (smiling)
And?
                                                            

32.

                       JULIA
      (laughing)
And? Well, the studio bought it
and made it into a great movie.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
And they all lived happily ever
after?
      (becoming somber)
That's certainly what we would all
hope for. I mean, hadn't this
woman been through enough for
crying out loud? But the devil
had one more card up his sleeve
...
                                                            
 
EXT. LOCAL PARK - DAY
                                                            
FLASHBACK - Julia and Robert (her ex-husband) sit on a park
bench. Julia is frowning.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
Look honey ...
                                                            
                       JULIA
Don't honey me Robert. Don't you
dare honey me. You gave up that
right long ago, remember?
                                                            
                       ROBERT
Now don't be like that Julia ...
                                                            
                       JULIA
And how's that baby-making machine
of yours doing these days? What's
her name? Tina isn't it? And how
old is Tina again Robert? Young
enough to drop at least a couple
of dozen of kids for you is she?
That should keep the Pope happy.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
Aw Julia, I didn't come here to
...
                                                            
                       JULIA
Ha! I thought we'd never get to
it. What exactly did you come here
for Robert? I'm all ears.
                                                            
Roberts shifts his weight on the park bench and clears his
throat.
                                                            

33.

                       ROBERT
Well, Tina and I were just
wondering if you could ... well
...if you could, help us out a
little.
                                                            
                       JULIA
Help you out?
                                                            
                       ROBERT
You know what I mean.
                                                            
Julia stares at him for a long moment. She truly doesn't
know what he means. Then the penny drops. Her mouth gapes
open.
                                                            
                       JULIA
You want money?
                                                            
Awkward silence.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
You're actually asking me for
money?
                                                            
Robert fidgets and looks around furtively.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
      (laughing)
Jesus Robert, you will never cease
to amaze me.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
      (defensively)
Now don't get me wrong Julia.
We're not asking for much. Just a
little to tide us over until I get
another job.
                                                            
Julia gapes at him.
                                                            
                       JULIA
You're joking right?
      (beat)
Tell me you're joking Robert.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
      (snaps)
Now look Julia, we all know you
must have a shit load of cash in
the bank, what with selling your
screenplay and all. I mean,
everyone knows you get a shit load
of money for that kind of thing.
            (MORE)

34.

                       ROBERT (cont'd)
      (softens up)
All we're ... Tina and me ... all
we're asking is for a little help.
She's due any time now and ...
well ... just a little help,
that's all.
                                                            
Julia stares at him for a long moment. First she laughs.
Then her face turns to anger.
                                                            
                       JULIA
Fuck off Robert.
                                                            
She stands up and walks away without looking back. Robert
runs after her, grabs her arm and turns her toward him. She
yanks her arm away.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
Don't you touch me.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
      (threatening)
Well now you wouldn't want all
your new high and mighty movie
friends to get wind of what you
did all those years ago, now would
you Julia?
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (aghast)
What are you saying?
                                                            
                       ROBERT
Well, giving up your baby. Signing
him away, just like that! That
wouldn't look very nice now would
it?
      (beat)
And think of what it would do to
him. To your precious son, David.
      (beat)
Cos you can bet he'd get involved
at some point. How could he not?
      (sniggers)
Now that would be a real shame
don't you think Julia? To drag
poor David into this?
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (furious)
You leave him out of this!
                                                            

35.

                       ROBERT
      (triumphant)
Well I will if you will.
                                                            
                       JULIA
So you're blackmailing me? Is that
it Robert? Your actually
blackmailing me?
                                                            
                       ROBERT
      (patronizingly)
Oh come on Julia, no need to put
it quite like that.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (shouting)
Well how else do you expect me to
put it? You're fucking
blackmailing me, you bastard.
                                                            
Bystanders in the park stare at them.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
      (furtively)
Keep it down for Christ's sake.
All I want is a little bit of
help, that's all Julia. A little
bit of help.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (through gritted
       teeth)
And how much ... help ... do you
want Robert? Just how much HELP
are we talking?
                                                            
 
EXT. PARK EXIT - DAY
                                                            
Julia and Robert walk out of the park. Julia is wooden,
flat. Robert is triumphant and doesn't try to hide it.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
I knew you'd see it my way hon. I
knew you'd do what was best. For
David's sake.
                                                            
He adds, as an afterthought.
                                                            
                       ROBERT (CONT'D)
You know Julia, you would probably
have made a great mother.
                                                            

36.

                       JULIA
Go to hell.
                                                            
Roberts walks away from her backwards so she can see his
smiling face.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
So call me when you have it. I'll
be waiting. Any time. Any place,
I'll be there.
                                                            
 
INT. JULIA'S LIVING ROOM - NIGHT
                                                            
Julia nurses a beer. FLASHBACKS of David come into her mind.
She relives the day in Mr. Harris' office when she signed
David away, giving him up for adoption.
                                                            
                       MR. HARRIS
      (as in a dream)
If you love David, really love
him, you'll do what's best for
him.
                                                            
Julia picks up the phone and dials.
                                                            
                       ROBERT (OC)
Hello?
                                                            
                       JULIA
I have it. I'll meet you at the
bar. Tomorrow night. Nine sharp.
                                                            
She slams the receiver down and takes a long swig of her
beer. Tears trickle down her face.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
      (whispers)
I'm sorry David. I am so sorry.
                                                            
She slowly picks up the receiver and dials.
                                                            
 
INT. BAR - NIGHT
                                                            
It's 9 o'clock. Julia sits with a beer, looking around
nervously. Robert joins her, smiling widely.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
Hey hon. Buy you another?
                                                            
                       JULIA
I'm fine.
                                                            

37.

Robert decides not to order a beer.
                                                            
                       ROBERT
So, d'you have it?
                                                            
                       JULIA
Of course, why else would I be
here?
                                                            
                       ROBERT
Well, may as well get it over
with. No use letting the grass
grow ...
                                                            
Julia looks around nervously. She slowly reaches into her
purse and takes out an envelope. Very slowly, she hands it
over to Robert. As Robert takes the envelope out of her
hand, he is suddenly surrounded by POLICEMEN.
                                                            
                       POLICE OFFICER
Robert Morgan you are under arrest
for the attempted blackmail of
....
                                                            
 
INT. TELEVISION STUDIO - DAY
                                                            
PRESENT TIME - Conclusion of television interview.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
Well folks, it's pretty much a
matter for the record what
happened next. Julia, will you
tell it please?
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (direct)
Well, the bastard is behind bars.
                                                            
The audience applause.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
It wasn't an easy decision to
make. I mean I didn't care for
myself. I didn't care what people
would think of me. But I couldn't
bear him ... that is my son,
David, I couldn't bear the thought
of him being dragged into the
whole mess. That was my only
concern.
                                                            

38.

                       CHRIS
What you did was magnificent
Julia. Let me tell you, you acted
magnificently.
                                                            
The audience applause.
                                                            
                       CHRIS (CONT'D)
      (softly)
Unfortunately, it did draw a great
deal of attention from the media.
Not only to yourself, but of
course, to your son as well. And
that was always your biggest fear.
                                                            
Julia looks down at the handkerchief she has been clinging
to all through the interview.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (softly)
All I can do is hope he can
understand the situation I was in.
      (beat)
And that he won't hate me for it.
                                                            
There is a long pause and complete silence.

Chris takes a sip of water, preparing himself for the final
moments of the interview.

Julia twists the handkerchief around her finger.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
Julia Morgan, you gave your son up
for adoption over 30 years ago.
      (pause)
You then went on to have yourself
sterilized at a very young age,
rather than bring any more
children into the world when you
could not raise the one you had.
                                                            
Julia looks down at the handkerchief. For the first time,
we see it is a child's handkerchief with a large blue letter
'D' in the corner.
                                                            
                       CHRIS (CONT'D)
You battled through who-knows-what
in the way of personal turmoil,
including blackmail, and you came
through Julia.
      (beat)
You came through.
                                                            

39.

He smiles warmly at her.
                                                            
                       CHRIS (CONT'D)
You not only came through, but you
created a wonderful screenplay
that was picked up by a major
studio and ... can I tell them
Julia?
                                                            
She laughs and nods.
                                                            
                       CHRIS (CONT'D)
Julia's screenplay has won an
Oscar nomination folks. It doesn't
get much better than that!
                                                            
The audience bursts into applause.
                                                            
Julia is embarrassed, but pleased. She looks at the
audience, smiling, mouthing 'Thank you' over and over.
Eventually, the applause dies down.
                                                            
                       CHRIS (CONT'D)
      (warmly)
So tell me about this movie.
What's it about?
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (sighing through a
       smile)
What's it about? Oh, everything
Chris. Everything.
                                                            
The audience laughs.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
      (more serious)
What's it about? Well ... it's
about human beings.
      (beat)
People.
      (beat)
Real people.
      (pause)
So often we think we're alone ...
that we're the only ones going
through something awful. But
that's not true. There are always
people going through the same
thing, thinking that they're
alone.
      (pause)
It's about shame. About how people
feel shame when they really
            (MORE)

40.

                       JULIA (cont'd)
shouldn't.
      (pause)
It's about fear. About how people
live their lives based on fear.
      (beat)
Fear of people finding out about
their shame.
      (beat)
So it's a debilitating vicious
circle.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
And the title?
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (smiling)
Products of Conception.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
Direct.
                                                            
                       JULIA
No sense being mealy-mouthed about
it.
                                                            
The audience laugh and applause. When the applause dies
down, Chris' voice takes on a somber quality.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
There's one more question I have
to ask Julia.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (softly)
I know.
                                                            
She looks down at the handkerchief. A long pause.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
I know.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
Julia, because of the attempted
blackmail, and all the press and
hullabaloo and oh my goodness on
and on it goes ... your son David
is now aware of who you are.
      (pause)
Are you going to get in touch with
him?
                                                            

41.

                       JULIA
      (without
       hesitation)
No Chris, I am not.
                                                            
The audience gasps. Julia looks around at them for a long
moment until they fall silent.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
      (calmly)
No Chris, I am not going to get in
touch with David.
                                                            
The audience gasps again.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
      (talks loudly over
       the audience)
I do not believe I have the right
to get in touch with David. I
signed away that right many years
ago.
                                                            
Julia looks at the audience for a long moment, then back at
Chris.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
David has wonderful parents. They
raised him as their own. He may
even have brothers and sisters. I
don't know.
      (beat)
And I believe with all my heart
that it would be wrong of me to
contact him.
                                                            
The audience murmurs. Julia looks at them, trying to read
their mood. Then she turns back to Chris.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
      (trying to explain)
When he was a child, I wanted so
badly to find him ... to knock on
their door, just to see him, to
tell him who I was.
      (pause)
But that was selfish of me. That
would only have confused him.
      (beat)
It would have interfered with his
sense of stability ... security.
      (beat)
It would have got in the way of
            (MORE)

42.

                       JULIA (cont'd)
his happiness.
                                                            
The audience becomes silent.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
And to this day I still think it
would be a selfish act ... my
contacting him.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
      (shocked)
So that's it? End of story?
      (pause)
Can that really be it Julia?
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (hesitantly)
Well ... if David feels he would
like to ... that is to say if ...
if David would like to contact me,
he would be very welcome.
      (resolutely)
It's entirely up to him to decide.
                                                            
The audience applause.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
So how would you feel Julia if ...
say ... you get a phone call
tomorrow morning.
      (getting excited)
So you're sitting there, the phone
rings, you pick it up and the
voice on the other end says, 'Hi,
it's David.'
                                                            
The audience is silent.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (softly)
Well Chris, I would be very, very
nervous.
                                                            
The audience murmurs loudly. That was not the response they
expected of her.

She looks at them for a long moment, then smiles.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
Nervous in a very, very happy way.
                                                            
The audience erupts.
                                                            

43.

                       CHRIS
      (carefully)
And if he doesn't call?
                                                            
The audience holds its breath. A very long silence.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (quietly)
Then I would understand. I would
understand. Of course ... I would
understand.
      (pause)
I would also like to apologize to
David if he is watching this. I
would never have brought him into
the public eye. Not for anything.
      (pause)
But when my ex husband tried to
blackmail me, he tried to make it
sound like having him ...
                                                            
Julia looks directly, intensively into the camera. She is
talking only to David now.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
He tried to make it sound like
having you, David, was somehow a
dirty, shameful thing. Something
so shameful that I would have to
pay to keep it quiet.
      (beat)
That hurt me more than anything
I've ever known David.
                                                            
She looks down at the handkerchief, composing herself for
this, the most important moment of her life. Finally, she
looks back directly into the camera, addressing only David.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
Having you was never a shameful
thing David. Never.
      (beat)
Your birth was a great blessing.
Please always know that.
      (beat)
The greatest blessing in the
world.
                                                            
The audience is silent. Some members are openly crying.

Chris motions to the camera man to zoom in on Julia.
                                                            

44.

Julia's eyes well up, but her voice remains steady. She is
determined not to evoke pity from anyone. Least of all
David. That is not what she is about.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
As for your adoption ... how could
that be shameful?
      (pause)
I had nothing to offer you ... I
was so messed up inside, I didn't
even have myself to offer.
      (pause)
Even my love was a broken kind of
love.
      (beat)
Because I, myself, was broken.
                                                            
She looks at Chris. He nods at her, encouraging her to carry
on.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
So you see David, none of it added
up to being shameful.
      (beat)
So why should I let a miserable
blackmailer turn it into something
shameful?
      (pause)
It would have been a dishonor to
you David.
      (beat)
To the beautiful life that is
yours to live.
                                                            
Without a trace of self pity, she smiles warmly at David
through the camera.
                                                            
                       JULIA (CONT'D)
Just be happy David. That's all I
want from you.
      (beat)
Nothing more.
                                                            
Silence. Audience members are crying.

Chris reaches over and squeezes her hand.

She smiles radiantly, as though years of worry have been
lifted off her shoulders.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
      (throaty)
In all my years of journalism, I
don't think I've ever met a more
            (MORE)

45.

                       CHRIS (cont'd)
genuine, more gutsy lady than this
woman sitting opposite me now.
                                                            
The audience erupts.
                                                            
                       CHRIS (CONT'D)
I have one more question.
                                                            
Julia gives in to gentle tears. She wipes them away from her
baby's tiny handkerchief. The camera gets a close up of the
handkerchief and the blue 'D'.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (wiping her tears)
I don't think there's anything
else to say is there?
                                                            
                       CHRIS
      (warmly)
Have you a date for Oscar night?
                                                            
The audience applause and laugh.
                                                            
                       JULIA
      (laughing and
       dabbing her eyes)
Not yet.
                                                            
                       CHRIS
Well Julia, will I do until the
right person calls?
                                                            
The audience goes wild and rise to their feet as Chris winds
up the interview.
                                                            
 
EXT. RED CARPET AT THE OSCARS - DAY
                                                            
Noise, confusion, glamour, flashing bulbs, stars walking the
carpet waving at the crowds.

Christopher Winter stands waiting at the beginning of the
red carpet where the cars are pulling up. His eyes are fixed
on the stars getting out of the cars. Suddenly his eyes
widen.

SLOW MOTION - A driver opens a car door and Julia gets out.
She looks stunning, but very nervous and timid. She sees
Chris and takes a few steps towards him.

Chris looks down, disappointed and upset. Julia on her own
is not what he had hoped for.

46.


Julia meets his eyes and slowly smiles. She turns around and
faces the car. David hesitantly gets out. He also looks very
nervous and timid. Julia walks to him and takes his arm.
They look into each other's eyes and smile.

Julia breaks into a radiant smile as she walks with her son
David toward Chris. The three of them beam at each other as
they are surrounded by press and flashing bulbs. The music
swells and we soar upwards and see the whole wonderful scene
from a bird's eye view.
                                                            


FADE OUT.


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From Sabrina Date 4/17/2012 ****
Very interesting. It definately appealed to me. I love how the flashbacks were put into place. Has some really great potential, i my own opinion.


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