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FADE IN - THE SEA
SUCCESSIVE SHOTS - DISSOLVING...
*BOILING, ROLLING - GREEN, DARK BLUE, WINE PURPLE, then SLATE GREY, CURLING like a MOUNTAIN falling on top of us, the stuff of NIGHTMARES...
TITLE OVER:
This is the story of a man who wanted to go home...
MORE VISIONS OF THE SEA...UNDULATING...BY MOONLIGHT...WITH LIGHTNING and RAIN...then -
TITLE OVER:
THE ODYSSEY
*The WATER becomes CALM and TURQUOISE - we are in the AEGEAN, the isles of Greece...
Now a WAVE CRASHES ON SHORE, bringing us up to a WHITE BEACH with trees above, REVEALING
A RAVISHINGLY BEAUTIFUL GIRL of 16
as she emerges from the woods and runs happily towards the surf, where she stops in surprise.
HER POV
something lying in the water, sloshing about...
WIDER
she moves down to where the WAVES CRASH ONSHORE, WASHING OVER...
THE NAKED BODY OF A MAN. The girl studies the corpse, whose arms and legs writhe with the movement of the waves -
HER POV (CLOSER)
he's forty-five, muscular, grizzled, an unkempt beard and greying hair, matted and sopping - it too undulates with the tide. His skin is a salt-encrusted hide.
CLOSER
the girl bends and attempts to tug the man up the beach.
CU THE MAN
his eyes FLICKER, then OPEN
HIS POV
the troubled face of an innocent girl peering down, then backing off with recognition and alarm. She SCREAMS...
THE RIVER MOUTH
nearby. TEN YOUNG WOMEN stand in the fresh water, washing LAUNDRY and spreading clothes upon rocks to DRY...
In response to the SCREAM they look up in alarm. One starts RUNNING towards the sound and the others follow...
ON THE BEACH
the GIRLS emerge running but are startled to a stop by what they see:
THEIR MISTRESS
squatting on her knees amid the pounding surf, propping up the exhausted MAN. She sees her companions.
THE GIRL
Help me! (they hesitate) HELP ME.
It is a command. They race to the shore and help drag the MAN out of the brine.
WATER spews from his lungs. He coughs. They help him sit up.
He squints at his rescuer, trying to see...
Slowly her beautiful smiling features come into FOCUS...
THE MAN
(a hoarse croak)
Are you a goddess, too?
They giggle at the suggestion, though the girl is clearly flattered - as he intended her to be. He looks about...
THE MAN (cont'd)
What place is this?
THE GIRL
This is the kingdom of Phaeacia. (proud) I am the princess Nausicaa.
THE MAN
Happy the parents of so beautiful a maid. (realizing) I blush to appear before you thus.
He coughs again; can barely speak. She melts.
THE GIRL
Whatever misfortune you have endured, you are safe now. Here...
She gives him some of the laundry, a TOGA with which to drape himself. With hands accustomed to the task, he covers his nakedness.
NAUSICAA (cont'd)
Now, you look quite presentable - well almost.
She laughs. So open. So friendly. So innocent. They all smile at him. One produces a leather flask of FRESH WATER, which the stranger GULPS greedily, spilling as he drinks.
NAUSICAA (cont'd)
Now I have told you my name - you must tell me yours.
CU CLOSER
Long pause. He looks at her sadly. Another croak -
THE MAN
Nobody. (off her look) My name is
Nobody.
He volunteers no more. The girls look at one another, some suppressing another urge to giggle. Nausicaa extends her hand. After a moment's hesitation, the man CLASPS it.
WIDER
They help him to his feet and begin to lead him to the trees. As they are about to withdraw to the woods, he turns and faces the ocean as Nausicaa watches, wondering.
CU THE MAN
THE MAN
The sea is my enemy.
He's mesmerized by the WAVES. Gently she pulls him away.
LATER
ON THE ROAD
Nausicaa drives in her little mule-driven CHARIOT; the stranger walking beside her, struggles to keep up. The WOMEN follow, chattering and watching the two.
NAUSICAA
(gaily)
I think you must be enchanted...
The notion dimly startles him.
THE MAN
Enchanted?
NAUSICAA
Under a spell of some sort. You know. You are well-spoken and bear yourself as one accustomed to authority, yet I find you with nothing to call your own save your skin. (shrugs) Perhaps it's only my imagination - about the spell, I mean. (tests it) "Nobody..."
He looks at her.
THE MAN
You have much imagination?
NAUSICAA
I am told I have a great deal too much.
THE MAN
(looks dead ahead)
Imagination - imagination can be a curse.
NAUSICAA
(unheeding)
I am waiting for my prince.
THE MAN
(looks around)
Where is he?
NAUSICAA
No, foolish man. I mean the prince who will one day carry me off this
island and make me queen of his own.
At this phrase, the Man looks pained, then, before he can answer, she sees something ahead -
NAUSICAA (cont'd)
Stranger, do you hear what I say?
THE MAN
(touched by her)
I hear, my lady.
NAUSICAA
Then attend me well. We are coming to the town and to the palace of my father, King Alcinous. You must walk farther behind my chariot. No, farther still, (waves her hand), for I do not wish to cause gossip among the common folk - "Nausicaa has found a man for herself on the BEACH..." (impatient) You know...
The Man can hardly suppress his smile, but he falls back
amongst the women folk as they approach the TOWN.
THE MAN
(a harsh whisper)
Athena be my shield...
EXT. THE TOWN - DAY
SEVERAL ANGLES
Nausicaa's chariot wends its way through the high street and the TOWNSFOLK watch the unkempt MAN trotting behind it, the WOMEN running and giggling, still further back, barely suppressing hoots of laughter at the whole thing.
No expression on the faces of the TOWNSFOLK as they watch the little procession travel uphill towards the PALACE.
It's not a big kingdom but it seems comfy...
CU A RAZOR SCRAPING A BEARDED CHEEK
SEVERAL SHOTS
*THE MAN being CLEANED. WASHED. His GREY BEARD TRIMMED. His body SCRAPED and OILED, his hair carefully untangled and COMBED. - (We see the PARTS, but not the entire result.) All this grooming is performed by smiling WOMEN. Then -
ALCINOUS' VOICE OVER
Hear us, Great Poseidon, Earth-shaker, lord of the wine dark sea, from whose bounty we take our nourishment...
CU BLOOD RED WINE
poured into an ornate GOBLET before the FEARSOME BUST of POSEIDON, his features threatening in green bronze...
WIDEN TO REVEAL
INT/EXT. KING ALCINOUS' PALACE - EVENING
The SUN low on the sea's HORIZON, visible in the distance.
Nausicaa's father, a handsome man with an intelligent face, wears the royal DIADEM as he holds a GOBLET of wine before the altar of the God, the distant OCEAN, behind...
ALCINOUS (cont'd)
...accept this libation from our hands... to thee, O Poseidon, we offer our thanks and gratitude for our happiness...
Alcinous pours the DARK WINE into a brazier before the STATUE with its implacable snarl.
THE STRANGER'S FACE
cleaned up, but we still don't have a total look at him - only his extreme REACTION to the statue and the toast as it is echoed by Alcinous' COURTIERS -
COURTIERS
Poseidon! Lord of the wine dark sea!
PAN DOWN TO THE STRANGER'S FIST
*clenching at Poseidon's name... the STATUE seems to grimace just for him...
ALCINOUS
plunges a TORCH into the LIBATION BRAZIER and FLAME erupts, filling the SCREEN. Then -
ALCINOUS' VOICE OVER
I trust you have dined well, stranger...
WIDEN TO REVEAL
The BANQUET TABLE - LATER
groaning even with leftovers. The King and his guests recline on COUCHES as they conclude their meal. All DINERS are MEN, save smiling Nausicaa. They are served by WOMEN.
ALCINOUS (cont'd)
...and that the pleasures of our table have restored you a little to yourself. I do not address you by name since you desire to remain unknown to us.
Now we see THE MAN. What a transformation! He wears a proper TOGA and ROBES that seem inately appropriate. Clearly this is SOMEBODY, not NOBODY. When he speaks he no longer croaks; his VOICE and ELOQUENCE will be the most compelling evidence of his stature.
THE MAN
(spreads his empty hands)
Since even the clothes I stand in are not my own, I can only repay such generosity with my gratitude. To both


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