Carnival script
Carnival (2017)
Synopsis: A documentary that follows a family owned carnival company as they go on the road for the year.

FADE IN:

A CIRCUS FLIER:

Floating in the night air like a falling Autumn leaf.

“Shiv” is the name of the KNIFE THROWER, written in sharp,

gleaming font. A stylish illustration depicts a hooded man

hurling knives at us, blades reflecting a cheering crowd.

A sharp WHISTLE - the poster TEARS as:

A REAL KNIFE:

Cuts right THROUGH it...

Time slowing down as we follow it FLY...

WHOOSH! WHOOSH! - twisting and turning...

WHOOSH! WHOOSH! - the blade reflecting fleeting GLIMPSES of

its surroundings:

Circus tents BURNING in the night...

SHIV (V.O.)

I hear them talk. They all talk so

much. About the war.

Shadows outlined against crackling flames... GANGBANGERS

firing semiautomatics...

SHIV (V.O.)

I hear them say it was about

revenge.

Carnival PERFORMERS defending their territory... a LION TAMER

cracks her WHIP at a chain-wielding THUG arching in pain...

SHIV (V.O.)

That it was about betrayal.

A FIRE BREATHER blows a plume of FIRE... torching two THUGS

alive...

SHIV (V.O.)

About money.

The KNIFE keeps flying... STABS into a THUG’s neck...

SHIV (V.O.)

But that’s just part of it.

2.

Blood SPURTS against the side of a trailer, and the CIRCUS

FLIER glued to it: “Zodiac” is the name of the FORTUNE

TELLER, written in sensual red font.

SHIV (V.O.)

It was also about fate...

The poster depicts a gypsy beauty holding a fan of tarot

cards. Wild eyes reflect flickering flames. A jewel-encrusted

circlet adorns her head.

SHIV (V.O.)

And about love.

CUT TO:

EXT. THE CARNIVAL - NIGHT

CIRCUS TENTS clustered together like a mountain range,

surrounded by trailers and rides. An oasis of color nested in

a high DESERT AREA.

MIDWAY:

Bright. Loud. Sword swallowers and beds of nails. Music and

laughter. Rigged game stands with stuffed animal prizes.

Carnies conning money out of townies.

CLACK!

A knife THRUSTS between two fingers spread on a table. We’re

now at...

INT. BACKSTAGE TENT - NIGHT

A hooded man sits in darkness playing five-finger fillet.

CLACK! CLACK! CLACK! - he stabs back and forth - faster and

faster while muttering something to himself.

It’s the knife thrower from the flier. SHIV (20). One of the

carnival’s star performers. We will never see him smile.

The knife CHANGES hands - now he stabs with his left - his

blade a BLUR of speed as he effortlessly repeats tongue

twisters:

3.

SHIV:

I thought a thought. But the

thought I thought wasn't the

thought I thought I thought. If the

thought I thought I thought had

been the thought I thought -

AYLEEN (O.S.)

-- then I wouldn't have thought so

much.

AYLEEN (22), his ever-cheerful sister and assistant, walks in

and places her hand by his -

The knife now flies over TEN FINGERS as:

AYLEEN:

We’re up, bro. Crowd is huge. Crowd

is hungry. How about we give them

something special tonight?

SHIV:

We do that every night.

AYLEEN:

Not talking about your knives. I’m

talking about...

She pushes the corners of his mouth up with her fingers,

forcing a smile.

AYLEEN:

There we go.

But the smile doesn’t last long.

She pulls his hood back.

AYLEEN:

And stop hiding that pretty face of

yours.

INT. BIG TOP - PERFORMANCE RING - LATER

A spotlight slices the darkened ring with white light. It

follows Ayleen as she enters alone, speaking through a

wireless MIC.

AYLEEN:

Howdy!

CHEERS from the public, an eclectic mix of scum:

4.

Gangsta types too young to afford the gold they wear. Chronic

drunks holding hipflasks. Rich assholes with silicone trophy

wives seated on their laps.

Ayleen’s mood suddenly darkens as...

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Matías Caruso

Matias Caruso is an Argentinean writer who broke out when “Carnival” made the Black List. more…

All Matías Caruso scripts | Matías Caruso Books

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"Carnival" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2017. Web. 14 Dec. 2017. <http://www.scripts.com/script/carnival_1242>.

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