Crash script
Crash (2005)
Synopsis: Writer-director Paul Haggis interweaves several connected stories about race, class, family and gender in Los Angeles in the aftermath of 9/11. Characters include a district attorney (Brendan Fraser) and his casually prejudiced wife (Sandra Bullock), dating police detectives Graham (Don Cheadle) and Ria (Jennifer Esposito), a victimized Middle Eastern store owner and a wealthy African-American couple (Terrence Dashon Howard, Thandie Newton) humiliated by a racist traffic cop (Matt Dillon).

EXT. AIRFIELD - DAY

We are moving through a small airfield full of parked light

planes. There are no people around. We move through the cluster of

planes towards a hangar on the edge of the field.

INT. HANGAR - DAY

We are still moving through light planes, but now we are inside

the hangar. Some of the planes have their engine covers open,

parts strewn around. Others are partially covered with tarps or

have sections missing. There is even a sleek executive jet parked

in one corner.

As we float past the planes we notice a woman leaning against the

wing of a Piper Cub, her chest against the wings trailing edge,

her arms spread out to each side, as though flying herself. As we

get closer we see that her jacket is pulled open to expose one of

her breasts, which rests on the metal of the wing.

CLOSEUP - Breast on metal.

CLOSEUP - Hard nipple and rivets.

CLOSEUP - WOMAN - CATHERINE

Early thirties, dark, short hair, stylish executive clothes. Her

eyes are wide open but unfocussed. A hand grips her shoulder from

behind. We follow the hand down behind Catherine and discover a

man crouched behind her, kissing her back.

Catherine is standing on a low mechanic's platform and her skirt

has been raised and hooked over the wing's flap. She wears garters

and stockings but no panties.

The man, handsome, cruel-looking, rises up behind her, enters her,

kisses her neck. Catherine half closes her eyes. She rotates her

pelvis gently against his thrusting.

EXT. FILM STUDIO - DAY

We are floating towards the modest gates of a small film studio -

the sign above the gates says "CineTerra" in Art Deco script

INT. FILM STUDIO - DAY

We now float through a film set on which a commercial for a min-

van is being shot. Lights are being reset, the van polished for a

beauty tracking shot.

We pick up an Assistant Director as he strides through the action,

looking for someone.

ASSISTANT DIRECTOR

I'm looking for James. Has anybody seen

James Ballard? You know who I mean? The

producer of this epic?

A Dolly Grip with very close-cropped hair looks up from a section

of dolly track which he is adjusting with small wooden wedges.

GRIP:

I think I saw him in the camera

department.

INT. FILM STUDIO - CAMERA ROOM - DAY

We float towards the door marked "Camera Dept." Inside the room we

find a young woman, a Camera Assistant, wearing a T-shirt and

heavy woolen socks and work boots and nothing else. She is draped

across a table strewn with camera parts, stomach down, head

resting on a black, crackle-finish camera magazine, her legs

spread.

Camera parts and cases, tripods, changing bags everywhere.

A man is behind her, kissing the backs of her thighs.

We hear the sound of the Assistant Director approaching with

deliberately heavy footsteps. The Assistant Director pauses just

outside the door.

ASSISTANT DIRECTOR (O.S.)

James? James, are you in there? Could we

please get your stamp of approval on our

little tracking shot?

The man, James, looks up from the woman's thighs.

JAMES:

Of course. Be there in a minute.

The Camera Girl twists around onto her back and throws her legs

over James's shoulders.

CAMERA GIRL:

It'll take more than a minute.

EXT. BALLARD APT. BALCONY - NIGHT

Catherine stands at the railing of the balcony of the Ballard

apartment, which overlooks a busy expressway near the airport. Her

arms are spread wide as they were in the airplane hangar, only

now, it is James, her husband, standing, who is behind her. They

are both half-naked, and he is inside her.

Their sex-making is disconnected, passionless, as though it would

disappear if they noticed it. An urgent, uninterrupted flow of

cars streams below them.

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Paul Haggis

Paul Edward Haggis (born March 10, 1953) is a Canadian director, screenwriter, and producer. He is best known as screenwriter and producer for consecutive Best Picture Oscar winners, 2004's Million Dollar Baby and 2005's Crash, the latter of which he also directed. more…

All Paul Haggis scripts | Paul Haggis Books

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