Midnight Cowboy script
Synopsis: Convinced of his irresistible appeal to women, Texas dishwasher Joe Buck (Jon Voight) quits his job and heads for New York City, thinking he'll latch on to some rich dowager. New York, however, is not as hospitable as he imagined, and Joe soon finds himself living in an abandoned building with a Dickensian layabout named Enrico "Ratso" Rizzo (Dustin Hoffman). The two form a rough alliance, and together they kick-start Joe's hustling career just as Ratso's health begins to deteriorate.

JOE:

Say, look, uh, I gotta have a word

with you, if you got a second.

MANAGER:

Later. Later maybe.

The Manager hurries away, carrying a basket of dishes.

RALPH:

You ain't coming to work?

JOE:

Don't guess. Just come for my day's

pay owing and to tell you I'm

heading East.

Joe tilts his Stetson as the Waitress appears at the door...

WAITRESS:

Cups!

... but she disappears without noticing Joe. Ralph offers his

hand. Joe takes it, holds it.

RALPH:

What you gonna do back there, East?

JOE:

Lotta rich women back there...

RALPH:

Yeah?

JOE:

Men, they mostly faggots.

RALPH:

Must be some mess back there.

JOE:

Well, ain't no use hanging around

here.

RALPH:

Ain't gonna collect your pay?

JOE:

I got me two hundred twenty-four

bucks of flat folding money...

(slaps hip)

He know what he can do with that

chicken-shit day's pay. And if he

ain't man enough to do it for

himself, I be happy to oblige!

INT. SUNSHINE CAFETERIA - DAY

The door marked EMPLOYEES ONLY swings open and Joe appears,

measuring his effect on the customers and his fellow

employees as he crosses the sterile white dining room,

observing the drab details of the life he has left behind -

garbage on greasy dishes, limp food in steam table trays,

coffee-soaked cigarette butts, caked mustard and ketchup on

formica table tops -- two pimply high school girls slurping

suggestive noises after Joe through the straws of empty coke

glasses. O.S. a Tiomkin-tradition chorus sings, "From this

valley they say you are going -- we will miss your bright

eyes and sweet smile for they say you are taking the

sunshine..."

EXT. TOWN MAIN STREET - DAY

The song ends as Joe comes from the cafeteria "... that

brightened our pathway a while."

JOE:

Tough tiddy, ladies, you had your

chance.

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Waldo Salt

Waldo Miller Salt was an American screenwriter who was blacklisted by the Hollywood movie studio bosses during the era of McCarthyism. He later won Academy Awards for Midnight Cowboy and Coming Home. more…

All Waldo Salt scripts | Waldo Salt Books

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"Midnight Cowboy" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2017. Web. 19 Nov. 2017. <http://www.scripts.com/script/midnight_cowboy_327>.

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