Synopsis: A thrilling and inspiring true story begins at the precipice of World War II as, within days of becoming Prime Minister of Great Britain, Winston Churchill (Academy Award nominee Gary Oldman) must face one of his most turbulent and defining trials: exploring a negotiated peace treaty with Nazi Germany, or standing firm to fight for the ideals, liberty and freedom of a nation. As the unstoppable Nazi forces roll across Western Europe and the threat of invasion is imminent, and with an unprepared public, a skeptical King, and his own party plotting against him, Churchill must withstand his darkest hour, rally a nation, and attempt to change the course of world history.
Genre: Biography, Drama, History
Year:
2017
336 Views

On BLACK SCREEN:
Run CAPTIONS:

MAY 9TH 1940:
HITLER HAS INVADED CZECHOSLOVAKIA, POLAND,

DENMARK, AND NORWAY. HE IS NOW POISED TO CONQUER THE REST OF

EUROPE.

IN BRITAIN, PARLIAMENT HAS LOST FAITH IN ITS LEADER, NEVILLE

CHAMBERLAIN.

THE SEARCH FOR A REPLACEMENT HAS ALREADY BEGUN…

FADE IN....

INT. HOUSE OF COMMONS CHAMBER - DAY

...is in an uproar. The PRIME MINISTER, NEVILLE CHAMBERLAIN

(71), sits with the MAJORITY, RULING CONSERVATIVE PARTY onone side of the house...

...whilst the LEADER of the MINORITY, OPPOSITION LABOUR

PARTY, CLEMENT ATTLEE (57) sits with the OPPOSITION PARTIESon the other side.

They face each other like two warring armies. Shouting.

Accusations. Wild gesturing. Paper darts thrown. Mayhem.

CAPTION:
MAY 9, 1940

ATTLEE rises to his feet, amid jeers and heckles, to denounceCHAMBERLAIN, directly opposite him across the aisle

ATTLEE:

Mr Speaker! Mr Speaker!

SPEAKER:

The Honourable Leader of the

Opposition, Clement Attlee!

ATTLEE:

Mr Speaker--Mr Speaker--it seems I

have not been clear enough. Thenlet me leave no doubt regarding myfeelings about Mr Chamberlain’s

future as Prime Minister.

(over boos and applause)

Owing to his years of inactivityand incompetence -

(cheers and boos)

(MORE)

2.

ATTLEE (CONT'D)

-we find him personallyresponsible, personally responsiblefor leaving our nation ruinouslyunprepared to face the present Naziperil. We are at war, Mr Speaker.

At war. And leaving aside whetherhe is fit to be a leader in peacetime

he has proven himselfincapable of leading us in wartime.

Cries of support to this -

Looking down from the LORDS GALLERY is - VISCOUNT HALIFAX(59), appalled by what he is seeing. He exchanges a look withthe bereft CHAMBERLAIN.

ATTLEE (CONT’D)

Therefore, in the national

interest, we the Opposition, arewilling to enter into a GrandCoalition--with the “ruling”

Conservative Party, so-called!...

An OPPOSITION MP stands and starts singing "Rule Britannia".

Others soon begin to join in.

SPEAKER:

Order! Order!

ATTLEE:

...but not, and I stress this,

never, under the leadership of MrChamberlain...

(angle on CHAMBERLAIN)

...who has lost the confidence of

this House!

A REBEL CONSERVATIVE MEMBER rises and crosses the floor to

stand with the OPPOSITION MPs, betraying Chamberlain.

ATTLEE (CONT’D)

(directly to CHAMBERLAIN)

In the country’s interest man,

resign! Step down! And let usfind a new leader!

UPROAR, and many cry “HEAR-HEAR!” and “GO!”

SPEAKER:

I said, ORDER!

The camera passes along the CONSERVATIVE benches to findANTHONY EDEN (43), behind him sits KINGSLEY WOOD (59).

KINGSLEY WOOD:

(into EDEN’s ear)

Where’s Winston?

3.

On the bench beside EDEN, as if to reserve a space, is an oldRoyal Naval Yacht Club CAP.

EDEN:

Ensuring his fingerprintsare not on the murder weapon.

The singing of “Rule Britannia” continues over -

INT. DINING ROOM/ SIR JOHN SIMON’S COUNTRY HOUSE - NIGHT

NEVILLE CHAMBERLAIN addresses the other CONSERVATIVE guestsgathered around a circular dining table.

CHAMBERLAIN:

Accordingly--tomorrow--I will

resign as Prime Minister.

GREAT FEAR in the faces of the NOBLES. CUT BETWEEN their

FACES, during the following -

CHAMBERLAIN (CONT’D)

(suppressing emotion)

As the Opposition refuse to join agovernment headed by me, we mustselect my successor.

(beat)

I will step down tomorrow but Iwanted my own party, the gentlemenI most respect, to know first.

LORD LONDONDERRY.

Halifax. There’s no question!

Our Foreign Secretary -

SIR JOHN SIMON:

No contest! HALIFAX

HALIFAX:

I appreciate your confidence but mytime has yet to come. However, onwhomever the task may fall, heshall be charged with the securityof these islands and of our Empire,

and shall be required to exploreall avenues.

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Anthony McCarten

Anthony McCarten (born 1961) is a New Zealand-born novelist, filmmaker, and playwright. He is best known for producing and writing the screenplays for The Theory of Everything (2014), which earned him Academy Award nominations for Best Picture and Best Adapted Screenplay, and Darkest Hour (2017), which earned him another Best Picture nomination. He divides his time between London and Los Angeles. more…

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"Darkest Hour" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2018. Web. 18 Jun 2018. <https://www.scripts.com/script/darkest_hour_1389>.

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