CLOSE-UP of a gold framed miniature portrait of JOHN MERRICK'S
MOTHER (tune or melody over her picture, heartbeat), which
DISSOLVES TO CLOSE-UP of real Mother smiling A shadow comes
over her face. CLOSE-UP of elephant ears, trunks, faces
Dark, heavy feet stomping elephant trumpet, rearing up.
Powerful hit and the Mother falls. Darker. Trunk slides over
Mother's face and breasts and stomach, leaving a moist trail.
MOTHER’S POV of elephant's mouth, eyes, skin. Mother's face
twists and freezes in a blurred snap roll.
BLACK again. Knock, knock sound. Curtain opens to horrified
CUT TO BLACK AND SILENCE
FADE IN TO steam shooting out of a huge old half-rusted
calliope. The music is very loud and raucous. Moving up and
back we see the black awning entrance to the freak tent,
where FREDERICK TREVES, Resident Surgeon and Lecturer on
anatomy at the London Hospital, is standing with his back to
us observing the posters of the freaks.
Coming along a muddy walkway at the side of the tent is
Treves' wife, ANNE, and their two DAUGHTERS. The shrill over-
whelming music seems to engulf her.
She looks discomfited, vulnerable, and protective of her
daughters. The girls, oblivious to any fear, are finishing
their chocolate sweets.
CLOSE-UP of Treves looking at a poster.
Treves turns and looks down to a chocolate-covered face. He
smiles at the children and Anne.
Anne sees the dirty faces and begins cleaning one of them.
The other daughter looks into the freak tent.
Poppa... may we go in there?
Alright... Your turn.
She turns the girl away from the freak tent and begins
cleaning her face.
Her kerchief pulls and distorts the little daughter's face.
Suddenly the girl sees a ring of elephants in the distance.
Oh,look M-ummy! Elephants!
Oh, elephants! We'll go see them.
You won't be long?
I'll join you shortly.
She takes the children off toward the elephants.
Treves watches them go for a moment, then turns and we go
with him into the dark freak tent. He pauses to pay admission
at a small booth, then disappears within.
DARKNESS. We hear what could be the trumpeting of an elephant.
Treves parts the black canvas and enters the main part of
the tent. Off to his left he sees a man wrapped in a black
cape, holding a conch shell aloft and blowing powerfully
into it. The tent is dimly lit with flickering oil lamps.
People mill about through the weaving corridors. To Treves'
right, he sees a sign reading, "The Deadly Fruit of the
Original Sin," over a small, very dark corridor.