Waiting for Lightning

Synopsis: A documentary on pro skateboarder Danny Way's tough childhood and his contributions to the sport, including footage of his jump over the Great Wall of China.
Genre: Documentary
Director(s): Jacob Rosenberg
Production: Samuel Goldwyn Films
  1 win & 3 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
96 min

I said,

"Are you crazy?

What do you think

you're doing?"

I didn't see it

as being a positive.

I saw it as Danny

gettin' killed.

Anyone can learn

anything they want.

It's all in your head.

You've just got

to spend time on it.

I don't know that a

lot of people really get Danny Way.


a lot of guys that...

that'll do whatever it

takes to win.

Then there's guys that do whatever

it takes to push themselves,

guys that do whatever it takes

to progress their sport.

Danny's doing what he was meant

to do, and you can see that.

And very few people get to

experience that in their life.

When we first got

to the Great Wall,

We were just like,

"Oh, my god.

This guy

is gonna kill himself".

They would never let anyone

build something like that here.

There was a mountain biker

that jumped the wall

and careened

to the bottom, dead.

His ramp wasn't

built properly.

It was

gut-wrenching for me.

The outcome

of the end of it

was what I was

always afraid to face.

I'd heard

about China for years.

Danny was on a flight

and actually saw

the Great Wall from the plane.

And I remember

him joking like,

"Yeah, I'm gonna jump

over that thing".

I don't remember hearing

how it all came together.

I just kind of remember

hearing it was going to happen.

The role of a manager

is to make your visions

and your dreams real.

Danny wanted to jump

the Great Wall of China,

and Ray and I felt

that we could help do that.

This is

what the next chapter

of Danny's life

was all about,

and we were the guys

selected to make that happen.

So we go

to China fueled by a dream

and ambition

and nothing much else.

We pull up

to Juyoungguan Gate...

and it's impressive.

The wall,

in some spots is...

I guess it's just not as big

as I envisioned in some spots.

I wouldn't want

to cheat on this one,

so I'm trying to find

some section on...

We're trying to find

a section here

that would actually be

a legitimate jump for me.

There's definitely spots

on the wall that are enormous,

but there are some

that aren't, and I just...

you know,

I wouldn't feel right

unless I found a spot

that was really magnif...

magnisi... nificent.

Sorry, it's freezing out.

I can barely talk.

So, I think right here...

jumping from there

over to here

is the widest spot

of the wall,

which I feel does the most

justice for skateboarding

and the possibility of breaking

the world record.

We come

back from China,

and Danny's on the phone

with me at midnight

going, "Dude,

is this real?"

And I'm like,

"I don't know.

"But here's your job:


have your bag packed,

and you're jumping until I'm

telling you you're not jumping".

I think

the story really started

before my brother

and I were even born.

It started out with my mom

and my father getting together,

and then taking off

and going up the coast

in their VW van

and following the hippie trail.


that Dennis

ever told me

about life happened.

Within 45 minutes

of me first meeting him,

he told me that I was

gonna have two sons with him,

and that he was put

on this earth

to teach me

how to be a survivor.

From that moment on,

we were connected.

Dennis and I

were on an adventure.

We went up to Oregon,

and all the pieces

of the puzzle

started being

put together.

Damon was so mellow,

and Danny wore me down.

That first year,

I thought I was gonna lose

my mind with him.

Little did I know

years down the road

I would go through

a lot more

than what I went through

the first year of life with him.

We got tired

of the rain in Oregon,

so we ended up moving

back to Carlsbad.

Dennis's ex-wife worked

for the gas

and electric company.

When we went to get

our electricity hooked up,

that's when she found out

Dennis was back in town,

and she had him

put in jail

for 90 days

for a $50 child-support payment.

And nine days

after he was in there,

he got hung

in jail.

That day was

the worst day of my life.

And that's where the kids

and I began our journey

as the three musketeers,

I call it.

I don't really remember

my father dying.

I don't really remember

the period of time

before him

and our stepdad, Tim,

but I clearly remember

us living with Tim

after my mom and him

got married.

Tim was like

a kid himself,

so when he met Damon

and Danny, it was on.

Tim came into

my brother and mine's life

and took on

that father-figure role.

He surfed every day,

and lived that

surfer/bohemian lifestyle.

We started tuning in

to that piece of culture

that was really free.

He gave my kids

exactly what they needed

at that point

in their lives.

He was really good

with his hands and wood,

and he would build

us skateboards.

He wouldn't go buy us a skateboard,

he'd actually build it,

and the thing would have

its shape and everything.

It was amazing.

We really little, and we'd ride

them around out front.

Danny was a three-year-old,

and he mastered how to make

that skateboard work for him.

He figured out that

if he put a knee on the board

and pushed

with his other foot,

he could keep up with Damon

trying to get

away from him on his bike.

Danny rode

it fearlessly.

Tim gave them an opportunity

to experience that,

wasn't overprotective,

wasn't afraid

of them getting hurt.

Everywhere we went,

we had to take the skateboard.

So, the skateboard was...

Rate this script:0.0 / 0 votes

Bret Anthony Johnston

Bret Anthony Johnston is an American author. He wrote the novel Remember Me Like This and the story collection, Corpus Christi: Stories. He is also the editor of the non-fiction work, Naming the World and Other Exercises for the Creative Writer. He won the 2017 Sunday Times Short Story Award. more…

All Bret Anthony Johnston scripts | Bret Anthony Johnston Scripts

0 fans

Submitted on August 05, 2018

Discuss this script with the community:



    Translate and read this script in other languages:

    Select another language:

    • - Select -
    • 简体中文 (Chinese - Simplified)
    • 繁體中文 (Chinese - Traditional)
    • Español (Spanish)
    • Esperanto (Esperanto)
    • 日本語 (Japanese)
    • Português (Portuguese)
    • Deutsch (German)
    • العربية (Arabic)
    • Français (French)
    • Русский (Russian)
    • ಕನ್ನಡ (Kannada)
    • 한국어 (Korean)
    • עברית (Hebrew)
    • Gaeilge (Irish)
    • Українська (Ukrainian)
    • اردو (Urdu)
    • Magyar (Hungarian)
    • मानक हिन्दी (Hindi)
    • Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Italiano (Italian)
    • தமிழ் (Tamil)
    • Türkçe (Turkish)
    • తెలుగు (Telugu)
    • ภาษาไทย (Thai)
    • Tiếng Việt (Vietnamese)
    • Čeština (Czech)
    • Polski (Polish)
    • Bahasa Indonesia (Indonesian)
    • Românește (Romanian)
    • Nederlands (Dutch)
    • Ελληνικά (Greek)
    • Latinum (Latin)
    • Svenska (Swedish)
    • Dansk (Danish)
    • Suomi (Finnish)
    • فارسی (Persian)
    • ייִדיש (Yiddish)
    • հայերեն (Armenian)
    • Norsk (Norwegian)
    • English (English)


    Use the citation below to add this screenplay to your bibliography:


    "Waiting for Lightning" Scripts.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 25 May 2024. <https://www.scripts.com/script/waiting_for_lightning_22986>.

    We need you!

    Help us build the largest writers community and scripts collection on the web!

    Watch the movie trailer

    Waiting for Lightning

    Browse Scripts.com

    The Studio:

    ScreenWriting Tool

    Write your screenplay and focus on the story with many helpful features.