Trumbo

Synopsis: Trumbo is a 2015 American biographical drama film directed by Jay Roach and written by John McNamara. The film stars Bryan Cranston, Diane Lane, Helen Mirren, Louis C.K., Elle Fanning, John Goodman and Michael Stuhlbarg. The film follows the life of Hollywood screenwriter Dalton Trumbo and is based on the biography Dalton Trumbo by Bruce Alexander Cook.
Genre: Biography, Drama
Production: Bleecker Street Media
  Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 5 wins & 41 nominations.
 
IMDB:
7.5
Metacritic:
60
Rotten Tomatoes:
73%
R
Year:
2015
124 min
Website
2,170 Views


CUT TO:

EXT. LAZY-T RANCH - 1947 - DAWN

Alone in a vast, serrated mountain range a hundred miles

north of Los Angeles, it looks from the outside like a rustic

sprawl. The day is a gold sliver in a navy sky.

INT. LAZY-T RANCH - BATHROOM - DAWN

Writer DALTON TRUMBO, 41, debonair, heartfelt and combative,

is naked in a tub, his copyholder on a wood plank as the

steam rises.

INT. LAZY-T RANCH - TRUMBO’S STUDY - DAWN

Like the whole home, beautifully appointed. Trumbo, kindled

cigarette in its holder, attacks the keys of a typewriter on

his desk, the fastest two-fingered typist ever as we --

QUICKLY CUT AROUND HIS OFFICE,

Taking in:

-The American Booksellers National Book Award for his novel,

Johnny Got His Gun.

-The poster for his movie, Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo.

-His Oscar nomination for the screenplay of Kitty Foyle.

TIGHT ON TRUMBO’S TYPEWRITER

As the inky letters CHOP movie dialogue across the white

paper, Trumbo writing like a boxer working a speed bag --

MANNY:
What do you want?

(CONTINUED)

TRUMBO - JOHN MCNAMARA 2.

CONTINUED:

MORE QUICK POPS - TO SHELVES AND TABLETOPS

Thick with framed photos of:

-Trumbo with KATHARINE HEPBURN at a United Refugee Committee

dinner.

-Trumbo as a World War II correspondent in his dress

uniform, boarding a plane.

-Trumbo in muddy fatigues, among battered SOLDIERS on a

battle-scarred beach in the South Pacific.

BACK TO A TIGHT CLOSE-UP OF TRUMBO’S WRITING

Words racing across the page:

What we all want.

ATOP HIS DESK - FRAMED FAMILY PICTURES

In them, WE SEE both Trumbo’s furious pecking reflected on

glass, animatedly overlaying stills under glass of:

-Trumbo’s wife Cleo in a stunning portrait.

-Trumbo and Cleo with their three children, blowing out

Niki’s eighth birthday cake.

BACK TO TRUMBO AT THE TYPEWRITER

Lemony morning light now paints the windows. Trumbo writes:

To not die young, poor...

And now we HEAR --

EDWARD G. ROBINSON (PRE-LAP)

What do you want? What we all

want. To not die young, poor...

-- as the final words of Trumbo’s speech strike paper -

...or alone.

-- Trumbo SLAPS the return and in a WHITE BLUR we’re now -INT.

A NEW YORK ALLEY (MGM SOUNDSTAGE) - NIGHT

EDWARD G. ROBINSON

...or alone.

(CONTINUED)

TRUMBO - JOHN MCNAMARA 3.

CONTINUED:

EDWARD G. ROBINSON -- a charismatic, stocky man of 53, both

assertive and refined -- plays “MANNY,” stepping from a

sedan, moving toward a SUPPORTING PLAYER as “ROCCO,” on his

knees, bloody lip, torn jacket.

“ROCCO”

Manny, these guys... I don’t give

’em what they’re after, they’ll

kill me.

EDWARD G. ROBINSON/“MANNY”

Hold it, Rocco.

“Manny” takes out his revolver -- and aims it at “Rocco,” who

freezes as he stands.

EDWARD G. ROBINSON/“MANNY” (CONT’D)

If we don’t fight these guys,

sure, maybe you -

As “Manny” gestures with the gun, its cylinder dislodges from

the barrel -- and several bullets FLY out and comically

CLATTER to the stage floor at Robinson’s feet.

EDWARD G. ROBINSON/“MANNY” (CONT’D)

Sh*t.

The director is out of his chair and on his feet -- SAM WOOD,

early 60s, sharp, authoritative.

SAM WOOD:

Cut! Goin’ again, Eddie.

A BELL sounds. The CREW rustles in the shadows.

EDWARD G. ROBINSON

Sorry, Sam. Sorry, everybody. Of

course, the one day the author’s

among us.

Trumbo sits nearby, in a bespoke suit, calmly smoking.

Robinson settles in a canvas chair with his name on the back.

SAM WOOD:

(as he glides past to talk

to the CAMERAMAN)

“Among us.” Sure ain’t one of us.

EDWARD G. ROBINSON

(keeping it light)

What’s the brilliant line, Trumbo?

(CONTINUED)

TRUMBO - JOHN MCNAMARA 4.

CONTINUED:
(2)

DALTON TRUMBO:

“If we don’t fight these guys,

sure, maybe you get that long,

happy life we all want.”

EDWARD G. ROBINSON

Then what is it you’ve got me

fighting for again?

DALTON TRUMBO:

“Peace on Earth, good will toward

men.”

Nearby, Wood SNORTS. Yeah, right.

EDWARD G. ROBINSON

You can’t do that, this is America.

DALTON TRUMBO:

How about sex and money?

EDWARD G. ROBINSON

There you go, two things we all

love. None of your little sermons

on citizenship.

EXT. A BEVERLY HILLS MANSION - BACKYARD - NIGHT

A flat half-acre dominated by a massive pool that GLOWS with

a hundred floating candles. A PARTY where:

-MEN are in black tie, WOMEN in gowns, everyone smokes,

everyone drinks. Different time, different world.

-There’s MUSIC from a live BIG BAND.

VOICES overlap and compete as we snag snippets:

PARTYGOER 1

“...I don’t love it but Zanuck

does...”

PARTYGOER 2

“...make the Indians the good guys,

that’s the twist...”

PARTYGOER 3

“Now the actors want to go on

strike. Who’s next? Lassie?”

CLEO TRUMBO, 30s, hovers at the edge of a GROUP OF WOMEN

about her age.

(CONTINUED)

TRUMBO - JOHN MCNAMARA 5.

CONTINUED:

She’s beautiful, observant, sensitive, often silent, as she

is here, excusing herself with a warm smile to look for

someone at the party, passing by --

A GROUP OF MEN. Louder, more boisterous. Within that group,

Edward G. Robinson.

EDWARD G. ROBINSON

(in mid-sentence)

...still doing reshoots, what else?

Luckily, Mayer lined up the A Team,

Sam Wood to shoot, Dalton Trumbo

for rewrites, so, fingers

crossed...

From across the lawn, TWO MALE VOICES suddenly RISE, so we

hear before we see:

SAM WOOD (O.S.)

...Jesus, Trumbo, a goddamn six-

month strike, for what?

Rate this script:4.2 / 5 votes

John McNamara

John McNamara is a writer, producer, show-runner and television creator. He wrote and co-produced the feature film "Trumbo," for which Bryan Cranston was nominated for an Oscar, as Dalton Trumbo, one of The Hollywood Ten blacklisted screenwriters. The film was nominated by the WGA for Best Adapted Screenplay and McNamara was awarded the WGAW's .. more…

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