“Rum Runners” Episode #1: Pilot
Original Screenplay written by Jason Wiese
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese
FADE IN EXT. – ATLANTIC OCEAN – NIGHT The pitch darkness of the night is broken by a SCHOONER cutting through the heavy fog that sits over the water. The boat speeds through the ocean, seemingly running from something. EXT. – SCHOONER, DECK - NIGHT Fedora-wearing GEORGE MCCARTHY, a gentlemanly sea captain and booze smuggler in his early forties, is at the wheel of the ship personally directing it through the dark. He’s cool, calm and collective as the group of DECK HANDS scurry all around making preparations to defend the boat. One of the deck hands, THOMAS, is in such a rush to approach George, he trips over a few crates labeled “Caribbean Rum, Made In Bahamas.” One of the crates busts open and the six bottles inside roll across the deck. The man quickly gets up and gathers himself. THOMAS Sir, we have a boat fast approaching us from the stern. They look hostile. GEORGE MCCARTHY How far away you reckon them to be? Suddenly a mortar shell shot from the hostile boat explodes right next to the ship when it hits the water. THOMAS Pretty close sir. GEORGE MCCARTHY I can see. THOMAS What would you like us to do sir? George turns around and takes out a handheld telescope to look at the pitch dark water behind him.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese He can’t see anything until the next mortar shell is fired which finally lights up the other boat’s size and location; it’s about one nautical mile away but closing fast. The second mortar shell lands within meters of George’s boat on the other side. GEORGE MCCARTHY Oh, he’s a big boy alright, looks like a pirate ship, probably followed us right out of Bimini. Yeah, definitely a bunch of pirates on that boat. THOMAS What’s your orders sir? GEORGE MCCARTHY Mount the machine gun and fire at will. Nobody’s going to steal our hard stolen rum. The deck hands frantically run around the boat preparing to set up the machine gun perch on the aft of the boat as mortar shells continue to EXPLODE all around. GEORGE MCCARTHY (impatiently) Come on men, those pirates aren’t always going to miss us. A shell will hit eventually. Just as he says that, a mortar shell lands so close to the boat that it kicks up water and sprays the deck. GEORGE MCCARTHY See? They’ve had the distance, now they almost have the accuracy. The deck hands finish setting up the machine gun and immediately start firing through the darkness towards the pirate ship. They’re so quick to start shooting that one of the men standing in front of the gun literally has to dive out of the way to avoid being shot. Both ships engage in a heated battle with George’s men trading machine gun fire with the pirate’s mortar shells.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese George continues calmly watching the action through his handheld telescope. The machine gun becomes much more accurate as the pirate ship gets closer to the schooner. Soon, a bullet makes a direct hit into flammable material on the pirate ship which causes an EXPLOSION on its deck. This causes a chain reaction of several other miniexplosions when other explosives catch fire. GEORGE MCCARTHY Don’t let up until they let up men. The deck hands continue firing the machine gun towards the pirate ship until it stops dead in the water. The FIRE and BILLOWING SMOKE has become too much for them so the pirate ship stops their pursuit. With George’s ship continuing at full speed, it doesn’t take long for the pirate ship to fade into the distance. The men cheer and high five each other once they realize the pirates are no longer a threat. GEORGE MCCARTHY Job well done men! (pauses) Thomas, front and center. THOMAS Aye aye, sir. Thomas promptly rushes across the deck and stands before George who is looking down at the busted crate. GEORGE MCCARTHY You busted one of my crates. I did sir. THOMAS Sorry sir.
GEORGE MCCARTHY Those bottles could’ve broken due to your carelessness. That could’ve cost me a lot of money.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese THOMAS I know sir, I’m sorry sir. GEORGE MCCARTHY Since those six bottles are already out of the crate, open them up and pass them around to the men. Consider that my personal thank you. THOMAS (smiles) Thank you sir. GEORGE MCCARTHY (smiles) Just be careful next time when you’re running across my deck. THOMAS I will sir. GEORGE MCCARTHY Slow our speed to cruise and set our course for the Bay. THOMAS Aye aye, sir. George takes a moment to relax so he walks up to the bow and leans over it as the ship enters Biscayne Bay. The dim lights of Miami slowly become visible as the ship gets deeper into the Bay. TITLE CARD: “Miami – 1921” LATER ON EXT. – MIAMI RIVER, BISCAYNE BAY – NIGHT George’s schooner cruises deep up the Miami River, passing several small buildings and houses, both new and rundown, that border the water. On board, the deck hands are cheering and very boisterous, no doubt drunk from the rum that George gave them.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese Off in the distance is a dock that leads to a brightly lit building which sits at the tip of the Miami River on the mainland. Music can be heard emanating from the building as the ship gets closer. The boat docks at one of the slips right in front of the building, known as Rum Runners Speakeasy, which is George’s biggest and best customer in the city. GEORGE MCCARTHY OK men, knock the shit off and compose yourselves. We’re professionals, so act like it. Start unloading the cargo. EXT. – RUM RUNNER’S SPEAKEASY, BACK DOOR – NIGHT George KNOCKS on the door as several DOCK WORKERS stand behind him in a line holding CRATES filled with rum. After several moments, the door is opened by JAMES “JIMMY” CONRAD, a laid back, friendly and well put together native Miamian in his early forties, who owns the large speakeasy. He’s literally a friend of everyone in the city, criminals and businessmen alike, and is just as comfortable in beachwear as he is in a crisp suit or tuxedo. JAMES CONRAD George, thank god you’re here. come on in. INT. – RUM RUNNERS SPEAKEASY, KITCHEN James leads the men into the kitchen. The dock workers start stacking the crates on top of each other in the corner as James and George stand in the middle talking. GEORGE MCCARTHY Sorry, I ran into some maritime issues offshore. JAMES CONRAD Everything OK? GEORGE MCCARTHY Yes. Nothing too out of the ordinary, I took care of it. Come,
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD Good. I was getting worried that I wouldn’t have rum for tonight. GEORGE MCCARTHY You already ran out of rum? Jesus, Jimmy, I delivered a shipment two days ago to you. JAMES CONRAD I know, but Mayor Beck had his birthday party here last night. I think his mistresses drank all my rum. Getting them drunk was the only way he could keep them separated from each other. GEORGE MCCARTHY Mayor Beck had his birthday celebration here? JAMES CONRAD Oh yes, he’s here almost every night. In fact he’s one of my best customers. GEORGE MCCARTHY You have to love Miami, it certainly is an open city. JAMES CONRAD What gave that away? The fact that I named my social club “Rum Runners” and built a big sign on my roof to promote it? Or the fact that I can pretty much run my place with impunity from the local authorities? GEORGE MCCARTHY You do have the biggest balls of any man I’ve ever met. JAMES CONRAD As I like to say, Prohibition? What, Prohibition? Can you believe the northern states are actually following this ridiculous amendment? GEORGE MCCARTHY Not just that, but northern counties in your very own state too.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD Everyone’s just a bunch of fools.
GEORGE MCCARTHY Yes, but those fools are keeping me in business and making me wealthy, very wealthy. JAMES CONRAD And I appreciate you for that. GEORGE MCCARTHY You’re not doing so bad yourself because of this either. JAMES CONRAD It’s not like Prohibition is enforced around these parts though. I run a speakeasy named Rum Runners out in the open. You can barely even call it a speakeasy because anyone who’s been in Miami for more than two minutes knows about it. GEORGE MCCARTHY Miami may be open, but you’re allowed to operate the way you do because of your connections. You know everyone worth knowing and even those that aren’t. Believe me, if it wasn’t for Prohibition there’d be four or five social clubs on every block in town. But for now, you’re the big fish in a mildly populated pond. JAMES CONRAD One day I hope to be that big fish in a big pond. A man can dream. Come, let me pour you a drink. GEORGE MCCARTHY Jimmy, you know I don’t drink. JAMES CONRAD Never? GEORGE MCCARTHY Never in my life.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD You don’t know what you’re missing. James grabs a bottle of rum from a counter and pours himself a drink. GEORGE MCCARTHY Sadly, I do, I’ve seen many people drunk off of my supply. Because of that, I’m OK with not drinking. JAMES CONRAD A man with discipline, I don’t understand that, but I can respect it. I’m glad I don’t have as much discipline. James takes a long look at the bottle before putting it back down on the counter. JAMES CONRAD Ahh, the real “McCarthy,” unadulterated, uncut and clean. Just the way my guests like it. GEORGE MCCARTHY Just the way everyone likes it, that’s why it’s so popular. Sure my margins aren’t as high as the other guys, but I make up for it in volume. I have customers from Maine to Miami. JAMES CONRAD I’m glad to see I’m not the only man that gets hard over money. James raises his glass to George… JAMES CONRAD (cont’d) Here’s to Prohibition, may we both continue to prosper. …and takes a large sip of his drink. LATER ON EXT. – RUM RUNNER’S SPEAKEASY, PARKING LOT – NIGHT CARS packed with revelers are pulling into the almost full parking lot in front of the speakeasy.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese One automobile accidentally drives into the bumper of another automobile that’s just pulling into a spot. Both DRIVERS quickly get out of their cars and angrily shout at each other over whose fault the fender bender was. The driver whose car got hit PUNCHES the other man, this is quickly followed by a return punch. Another car pulls up to a prime parking spot towards the front of the club. ROBERT GRAVES, a handsome, MIDDLE-AGED GENTLEMAN dressed in a suit, and a beautiful, younger woman, named PENELOPE, dressed in an evening gown exit the vehicle and walk, handin-hand, towards the front door. Robert knocks three times once they get to the closed door. After a few seconds of silence, the door is opened by JEEVES, a tuxedo-clad middle-aged African-American male. JEEVES Ahh, good evening sir and madam. Please, come in and make yourself at home. ROBERT GRAVES Thank you Jeeves. Jeeves steps to the side so that the couple can enter. INT. – RUM RUNNER’S SPEAKEASY MAIN ROOM Showcasing a panoramic view of the inside, the cavernous club is filled with people milling about or sitting at one of the many tables spread throughout. Each seat in the huge bar area, located off to the side of the room, is occupied with the spaces between the seats being filled with one to two people deep. Boisterous patrons walk in front, behind and around the couple as they make their way into the club and towards a waiting table that is being set up by the attentive STAFF.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese Ever the host, James, who’s in mid-conversation with a male patron at the bar, excuses himself when he sees the couple sit down so he can walk over and greet them. JAMES CONRAD Good evening folks, how are you tonight? ROBERT GRAVES Very good, thanks. Jimmy, I’d like to introduce you to my new girl, Penelope. James takes her hand and kisses it. JAMES CONRAD Penelope, a beautiful name for a beautiful young lady. PENELOPE Thank you. JAMES CONRAD I hope you enjoy my humble little club. PENELOPE It looks really beautiful. JAMES CONRAD Well then, isn’t everything just beautiful tonight? ROBERT GRAVES It certainly is. James signals a WAITER close by with his fingers. JAMES CONRAD Let me get you both a glass of champagne to start your evening off. PENELOPE Oh no, that’s not necessary. JAMES CONRAD Nonsense, consider it my small token of appreciation to you for stopping by my humble establishment and a congratulations to the new, beautiful couple.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese James shakes Robert’s hand then walks away where he’s quickly intercepted by JOHN PELHAM, a degenerate, middleaged professional gambler who spends most of his nights in the speakeasy, specifically the casino. JOHN PELHAM I saw what you did there James. You know, just when I think you don’t have a heart, you go and do something like that. You’re a very complex man Jimmy Conrad. JAMES CONRAD What? That back there? That’s the sixth woman he’s brought into this place in the last month. She’ll be lucky if the relationship lasts through dessert. JOHN PELHAM So why did you buy them a drink if you think it’ll be over before it starts? JAMES CONRAD That man’s weakness is champagne. You get two glasses in him then the money starts flying out of his wallet. A bottle of wine here, a shot of rum there, he even sometimes sends a glass of whiskey or two over to the next table for good measure. JOHN PELHAM (smiles) Maybe you’re not so complex a man after all. JAMES CONRAD I never said I was. I’m easy to figure out actually, I follow the money. Where it is, I’m not that far behind if I’m not already there. Speaking of which, have you hit the tables yet? JOHN PELHAM Oh I’m not sure if I’m going to play tonight.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD John, you say that every night, but every night I see you tied to the roulette table for hours at a time like it was your mistress. JOHN PELHAM I know, but I’m not sure I’m feeling it tonight. JAMES CONRAD No? You’re favorite dealer is working though. JOHN PELHAM (eyes light up) Peter!?! JAMES CONRAD The one and only. JOHN PELHAM Excuse me Jimmy. JAMES CONRAD No problem. John rushes off and heads over to another room that houses the speakeasy’s illegal casino. JAMES CONRAD (to himself) See, just follow the money. Jimmy then walks over to MAYOR BECK, a jovial, portly middle-aged man, standing at the corner of the bar with a companion. JAMES CONRAD Mayor Beck, I’m surprised to see you here two nights in a row. MAYOR BECK What can I say? I had such a good time at my birthday party last night that I just had to come back to make sure it wasn’t a dream.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD Did your wife have a good time as well? MAYOR BECK She must’ve since she barely spoke to me. JAMES CONRAD That’s usually how a married couple can keep the passion alive. What do they say? Absence makes the heart grow fonder. MAYOR BECK That and mistresses…a lot of mistresses. JAMES CONRAD You said it, not me. MAYOR BECK Please, I’m the mayor, I can do whatever I want. JAMES CONRAD Ahh yes, the illusion of power by the politicians in this city. I’m very familiar with it. MAYOR BECK Ever the comedian. JAMES CONRAD Well I don’t try to be, I just state the facts. The mayor takes a big sip of his rum cocktail then looks around and sees a club packed with drinkers and a few obvious prostitutes at the bar. MAYOR BECK James, with all this illegal booze and fraternizing with women of ill repute… JAMES CONRAD (interrupts) Don’t forget the gambling in the back. MAYOR BECK And the gambling, I feel like I should (MORE)
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese MAHYOR BECK (cont’d) register a complaint with someone, but I just feel like no one would listen. JAMES CONRAD (sarcastically) Oh Mr. Mayor, I’m sure there’s someone out there that listens to you. MAYOR BECK By the way Jimmy, allow me to introduce you to my guest. This is Gerald Novak, Miami’s new chief of police. CHIEF GERALD NOVAK, a large, strong, physically imposing man with an intimidating personality, shakes Jimmy’s hand. CHIEF NOVAK How do you do Mr. Conrad? JAMES CONRAD I’m doing good, just another day in paradise. CHIEF NOVAK (looking around) Mr. Conrad you have a wonderful place here. My compliments. JAMES CONRAD Thank you. So tell me chief, what do we need a chief of police in this city for? CHIEF NOVAK Whatever do you mean? JAMES CONRAD I always looked at Miami as an open city for anyone and everyone to do business, legitimate or otherwise. If there are no laws, why do we need law enforcement? CHIEF NOVAK Mr. Conrad, respectfully I disagree. Miami is part of the United States last time I checked and America is a country of laws.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD Says you. CHIEF NOVAK So you don’t think we’re a country of laws? JAMES CONRAD No, I question whether or not Miami is truly a part of the United States. MAYOR BECK (laughs) Chief, once you get to know Jimmy you’ll see that he’s a man that likes to play by his own rules, which are no rules at all. CHIEF NOVAK (laughs) OK Mr. Conrad, I can understand you but make no mistake, I am the chief of police and I will corral the lawlessness that permeates this city by enforcing the laws of this city, state and country. Gerald gets the attention of JOE THE BARTENDER, a large, rough and tumble older man, to order a drink. CHIEF NOVAK My friend, I’ll take another rum cocktail. JAMES CONRAD (smiles) Selectively of course? CHIEF NOVAK But of course. I’m not crazy after all and I know how to appreciate a good time. Jimmy shakes Gerald’s hand as he tries to move on to the next group of people he wants to mingle with. JAMES CONRAD Well good luck to you. You have a friend here with me. CHIEF NOVAK I should hope so.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese James signals the bartender to get his attention then points to the mayor and police chief. JAMES CONRAD Joe, these two gentlemen drink on the house tonight, OK? Get them whatever they want. MAYOR BECK Ever the gentleman. James shakes the mayor’s hand before finally walking away. JAMES CONRAD Enjoy the evening gentlemen. James greets several other GUESTS on the other side of the bar. AT A TABLE ACROSS FROM THE BAR WILLIAM CARR, a wiry, rough-looking, struggling writer in his early-thirties with a macho attitude who’s drunk more often than not, is engaged in a heated arm wrestling match with a MAN twice his size. After putting up a good fight for the first few seconds, the larger man makes quick work of him and wins the match to the applause of the handful of PATRONS who have gathered around to watch. The man lifts his arm in victory then walks away. William stands up, staggers around a little bit and starts shouting at anyone who will listen to him. WILLIAM CARR Big deal, big deal. The man was twice my size! Come on, I’ll take on anyone else and I’ll kick their ass! Who wants it? Who wants a piece of me? I’ll take you on, hell I’ll take you all on! Jimmy walks over and puts his arm around William to try to calm him down. JAMES CONRAD William, come sit down and relax.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese WILLIAM CARR I am relaxed Jimmy. JAMES CONRAD Well you could me more relaxed. Jimmy leads him back down to his seat at the table. JAMES CONRAD I’ll get you another drink. As soon as Jimmy walks away, William goes back to his nearly incoherent shouting. WILLIAM CARR Come on, who wants it?!? PHILLIP, a handsome but roughneck-looking young man in his early twenties, emerges through the crowd to accept the challenge. I’ll do it. PHILLIP I’ll be next.
WILLIAM CARR Little boy, you don’t even know what you just got yourself into. PHILLIP Well educate me. William leans over and pats the other side of the table where the open chair is. WILLIAM CARR Take a seat so I can take you to school. Phillip rolls up his sleeve, sits down and prepares himself to arm wrestle while the patrons around them are CHEERING and passing money around as they make bets with each other. WILLIAM CARR Are you ready lad? PHILLIP (smiles) Yes.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese WILLIAM CARR Go! The two begin arm wrestling and, just like the match before, after William puts up a good fight for a few seconds, Phillip quickly begins to dominate and nearly breaks William’s arm on his way to victory. The crowd is boisterous with half of them applauding and ecstatic that they won money, while the other half groans knowing they just lost money. Phillip nonchalantly stands up, takes his winnings from a man standing close by then walks away while William stands up and kicks the table repeatedly in anger. WILLIAM CARR God damn it, motherfucker. Son-of-a-bitch! BAR AREA Jimmy, who has his back towards William’s antics, is busy getting a drink for someone when a PATRON taps him on his shoulder to get his attention. BAR PATRON Excuse me, Mr. Conrad. JAMES CONRAD What is it? BAR PATRON Is that man OK? Oblivious to William’s actions since he’s so used to seeing him act up, James reluctantly turns to look at him. Who? JAMES CONRAD Oh, William? Stupid asshole!
BAR PATRON Yes. I think you might need to step in before he hurts someone or hurts himself. JAMES CONRAD Come now, don’t be foolish. Carr. That’s William
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese BAR PATRON The famous writer? JAMES CONRAD Yes, he’s hit some hard times lately. This is recurring behavior for him. It’s best to just stay away, he’ll tire himself out eventually. Getting involved will only aggravate him and make him act up more. BAR PATRON Why’s that? JAMES CONRAD He likes the attention, just like every other author in America. BAR PATRON OK, I’ll make sure I keep my distance. Jimmy takes the drink and walks over to a table by the bar where CHARLES FRANKLIN a short, middle-aged real estate speculator whose recently moved down from the north with dreams of making a quick fortune, is sitting by himself. CHARLES’ TABLE JAMES CONRAD Is this seat taken? CHARLES FRANKLIN There’s always a seat open for you, Jimmy. JAMES CONRAD Thanks. James sits down and hands Charles the drink. CHARLES FRANKLIN Is this for me? JAMES CONRAD It’s not mine, so by process of elimination it must be yours. CHARLES FRANKLIN Thank you Jimmy.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD How’s the market treating you Charles? CHARLES FRANKLIN It’s prosperous so far. I’ve been buying up a good amount of property in an area north of Biscayne Bay and the buyers have been lining up. I can hardly keep up with the demand, so I’m looking to develop a couple projects in south Dade too. JAMES CONRAD Good, that means you can start paying your tab. CHARLES FRANKLIN Absolutely. Charles immediately takes out his wallet and throws several bills on the table. CHARLES FRANKLIN (cont’d) In fact, here you go. What do I owe, $40? Here’s $40. JAMES CONRAD Probably a little more than that, but I’ll tell you what, for being a gentleman and paying up without me harassing you, I’ll give you a discount. I’ll take the $40 and we’ll call it even. CHARLES FRANKLIN Oh no, I couldn’t possibly. If I owe you more, please tell me and I will pay it. JAMES CONRAD You’re all settled in my book. CHARLES FRANKLIN But Jimmy… JAMES CONRAD (interrupts) Stop while you’re ahead Charles or I’ll kick you out of here and you won’t be welcomed back.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese CHARLES FRANKLIN I certainly don’t want that to happen, I’d be forced to pick up a hobby then. JAMES CONRAD Then just say thank you and we won’t discuss it again. CHARLES FRANKLIN (sheepishly) Thank you Jimmy. JAMES CONRAD No problem, just continue to be a loyal customer. CHARLES FRANKLIN You don’t have to worry about that. I have nowhere else to go on my nights. Charles takes a gulp of his drink. JAMES CONRAD That’s what I like to hear. James takes out a CUBAN CIGAR from an inside jacket pocket and carefully lights it. The two men remain silent as James takes a couple of deep puffs to relax in the middle of another tense work night. JAMES CONRAD There’s very few things better than a good Cuban cigar between my lips. CHARLES FRANKLIN Surely the touch of a woman must be better. JAMES CONRAD Overrated my friend. Overrated? CHARLES FRANKLIN You can’t be serious.
JAMES CONRAD Don’t get me wrong, I love the touch of a woman, and to touch a woman, as (MORE)
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD (cont’d) much as the next man, but there’s something about a good Cuban cigar. CHARLES FRANKLIN And what’s that? JAMES CONRAD Well for one, a good Cuban cigar will never break your heart. CHARLES FRANKLIN Ahh James, who knew you were such a romantic? JAMES CONRAD I’m not, I’m a realist. CHARLES FRANKLIN I feel like there’s a good story behind your comment, care to share? JAMES CONRAD Maybe one day Charles, but not with you. CHARLES FRANKLIN (laughs) Jimmy, I have a feeling you’re a more complex man than you let on. JAMES CONRAD I’ve been getting that a lot lately. Charles looks across the room and notices that William Carr is sitting at his table alone, talking to himself and periodically hitting himself on the side of the head. CHARLES FRANKLIN Look at William over there. James doesn’t bother turning to look at him. JAMES CONRAD Quite frankly I’m tired of looking at him tonight. CHARLES FRANKLIN He’s mumbling to himself. (MORE)
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese CHARLES FRANKLIN (cont’d) (perplexed) And he’s punching his head for no apparent reason. JAMES CONRAD I assure you there’s a reason. CHARLES FRANKLIN And what’s that? JAMES CONRAD Somebody has to knock some sense into him. It might as well be him. CHARLES FRANKLIN Everybody goes through their rough patches. JAMES CONRAD That’s true. But it never seems to end with him, he’s on a slow path to a quick self-destruction. CHARLES FRANKLIN Better him than us I guess. JAMES CONRAD Maybe so, but I’d prefer if the final act in his self-destruction doesn’t happen in my club. I have a business I’m trying to run here. CHARLES FRANKLIN Instead of sitting idly by and watching him kill himself, I’m going to do something for him. JAMES CONRAD And what’s that? CHARLES FRANKLIN (thinking) I’m not sure. But if I’m going to have to see him every night, I might as well try to cheer him up. Otherwise it’ll get pretty damn depressing pretty damn quickly watching this.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese James pats the back of Charles’ hand then stands up to excuse himself. JAMES CONRAD Well let me know when you figure it out. Call me curious. In the meantime, excuse me while I greet the rest of my guests. CHARLES FRANKLIN No problem Jimmy. Good seeing you. Enjoy the rest of the night. BAR AREA Three well-dressed, middle-aged GANGSTERS are in midconversation with each other at the corner end of the bar, opposite from where the Mayor and police chief are situated. The three gangsters are well-known in Miami crime circles MICKEY MARINO, a short, stocky rough-looking Italian, MICHAEL RICCI, a tall clean-cut looking Italian, and ELIJAH BERNSTEIN, a short, stocky but well-dressed Jewish man. While the three men are in mid-conversation, Mickey’s eyes and mind are concentrated on the three very pretty, welldressed PROSTITUTES sitting next to them at the bar. MICHAEL RICCI Isn’t that right, Mickey? Michael waits for a response from Mickey that never comes, so he backhands him in the shoulder to get his attention. MICHAEL RICCI Yo, Mickey, I’m talking to you. a matter with you?!?! MICKEY MARINO What? MICHAEL RICCI What do you mean what? You want to get back into the conversation here? Or should me and Elijah go outside and continue our conversation out there? What’s
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese MICKEY MARINO (still distracted) Sorry. I can’t take my eyes off these broads over here. MICHAEL RICCI (looks at the girls) The whores?
MICKEY MARINO Hey, have a little respect. ELIJAH BERNSTEIN But they are whores. MICKEY MARINO They’re working girls, just like we’re working guys. MICHAEL RICCI Don’t lump me in with them whores. MICKEY MARINO Why? It’s all the same. We all hustle for money. MICHAEL RICCI I’m not going to get into an argument with you over this. MICKEY MARINO I think I’m going to talk to the redhead. ELIJAH BERNSTEIN Be careful. I hear she likes to play hard to get. Elijah and Michael both laugh at Mickey’s expense. MICKEY MARINO Shut up guys. ELIJAH BERNSTEIN We just don’t want to see our friend get hurt, that’s all. Elijah and Michael laugh again at Mickey’s expense which begins to anger him so he pulls a gun out of his jacket and points it at them.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese MICKEY MARINO (agitated) Fuck you motherfuckers! I’ll shoot both of you motherfuckers right here, in front of everybody. You think I care? MICHAEL RICCI (laughs) OK, OK, relax, put the gun down. Michael pushes the gun down to his waist. Suddenly, James appears behind Mickey…he’s seemingly everywhere in his club at all times. JAMES CONRAD Gentlemen, you know the rules. You’re more than welcome to patronize my establishment as long as there’s no gunplay or violence of any kind here. I run a clean club and I intend to keep it that way. Mickey’s tough exterior melts away when he’s chastised by James. MICKEY MARINO (sheepishly) Sorry Jimmy. I know your rules and I respect them. It won’t happen again. JAMES CONRAD It better not. (smiles) You gents enjoy the rest of your evening, stay out of trouble. James whispers in Mickey’s ear before James walks away. JAMES CONRAD (whispers) I don’t know which one you’re considering but I have it on good authority that the blonde may have syphilis. After James leaves, Mickey makes an announcement to his two gangster friends.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese MICKEY MARINO Excuse me boys, but I got a redhead to talk to now. MICHAEL RICCI She looks expensive, I hope you brought your wallet. MICKEY MARINO Ohh, I’m not paying for it. ELIJAH BERNSTEIN But she’s a hooker. MICKEY MARINO So? I’m going to make this girl want me so bad that she’ll consider paying me. MICHAEL RICCI (laughs) Good luck with that. MICKEY MARINO I don’t need luck, not with my charm and personality. Mickey grabs his drink then slowly approaches the redhead from behind. He squeezes himself in between her and the blonde prostitute sitting next to her. MICKEY MARINO (smiles) Hello there pretty young lady. DOROTHY Hi. MICKEY MARINO I’m Mickey, what’s your name? I’m Dorothy. DOROTHY So Mickey, what do you do?
MICKEY MARINO I make love to women, a lot of them. I’m quite good at it too, or so I’ve (MORE)
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese MICKEY MARINO (cont’d) been told. I guess it’s true, practice does make perfect. DOROTHY Is that right? MICKEY MARINO Yeah, you out of anyone in this place should know what I’m talking about. Cute. DOROTHY So what else do you do?
MICKEY MARINO I rob, cheat, steal and kill. You name it, I do it. You have a problem, I solve it. DOROTHY How adventurous. MICKEY MARINO And dangerous. I am dangerous. like danger? Do you
DOROTHY Look, Mickey. There’s a lot of rich, successful, lonely men in here tonight, so let me get right to the point. $50 gets me for the night, $25 gets me until you come. MICKEY MARINO Mmmm, I like it when you talk dirty like that. DOROTHY Cut the shit. Those are my prices and they’re non-negotiable. MICKEY MARINO But… DOROTHY (interrupts) Listen, the only butt you’ll be seeing tonight is your gay friend’s over there if you don’t pay my price.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese Michael and Elijah, who are standing at the corner of the bar watching them interact, are having their own quiet conversation. ELIJAH BERNSTEIN Wow, I can’t believe she called you gay. MICHAEL RICCI Are you kidding me? That was absolutely directed towards you. Me? it. ELIJAH BERNSTEIN She was looking at you when she said
MICHAEL RICCI No she wasn’t. She meant you, she just couldn’t see you because you’re so short. ELIJAH BERNSTEIN Classy. You always have to bring it back to my height. Fuck you. MICHAEL RICCI Fuck you. DOROTHY So Mickey, what do you say? MICKEY MARINO (thinking for a moment) Ummm… DOROTHY No time for thinking. Time is money. MICKEY MARINO Are you sure you won’t consider a free fuck this time around? I’m a powerful man, ask anyone here. DOROTHY So are most of the other men here. The difference between them and you though is that they’re willing to pay me for my company. Which puts them way ahead of you in my book.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese MICKEY MARINO I’m really good at fucking though. DOROTHY (dismissively) OK, you can leave me now so I can get back to work. MICKEY MARINO But… Dorothy puts her arm up in front of Mickey to dismiss him. DOROTHY (interrupts) Stop wasting my time little boy. MICKEY MARINO (aggravated) OK honey, but you don’t know what you’re missing out on. DOROTHY I know, it’s my loss. Enjoy tongue stroking your friend’s cock tonight. Mickey walks back to his friends dejected. MICHAEL RICCI (whispers to Elijah) Seriously, why does she think you’re gay? ELIJAH BERNSTEIN Don’t start this shit again. MICHAEL RICCI Swung and miss, huh Mickey. MICKEY MARINO Clearly. MICHAEL RICCI What should we do now? MICKEY MARINO I need to let off some steam. Let’s go down to the docks and steal something.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese ELIJAH BERNSTEIN Like what? MICKEY MARINO I don’t know, there’s got to be valuable cargo somewhere just sitting around. If I can’t get laid tonight maybe I can at least make some money. MICHAEL RICCI Sounds like a plan, let’s do it. MICKEY MARINO First, we do shots. Mickey signals the bartender who immediately pours the three men shots, which they do quickly and then leave. As Mickey walks by Dorothy he can’t resist saying one last comment. MICKEY MARINO Last chance honey. DOROTHY Drop dead cheap bastard. Mickey looks at the blonde sitting next to her. MICKEY MARINO Nice, do you let her eat your pussy with that mouth? DOROTHY Creep. MICKEY MARINO Fuck you too. Michael and Elijah quietly push Mickey away from her and towards to exit. MICHAEL RICCI One last question, who do you think the gay one is? DOROTHY Eat a dick.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese MICHAEL RICCI Does that mean me? Dorothy just flips them off with her middle finger. AT A TABLE ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE ROOM FROM THE BAR J.R. RANDOLPH, a jovial older, very well dressed banking tycoon with a monocle, is holding court at a table in the middle of six much younger, very attractive FEMALES. His arms are tight around the shoulders of the immediate girl on either side of him. All the women are laughing and very engaged with what J.R. is saying. James walks up to the table and joins in on the laughter just as J.R. finishes up telling another story. JAMES CONRAD I love seeing my patrons having such a good time. J.R. RANDOLPH Jimmy, how are you? J.R. reaches all the way across the table to give James a firm handshake. JAMES CONRAD I’m good J.R. I’d ask you the same question but from the looks of it, I think I know the answer. J.R. RANDOLPH Right you are! James, these are the six best secretaries from my New York office. I decided to take them down here for the week as a “thank you” for all their hard work. One of the young ladies sitting next to J.R. cozies up and starts gently kissing him on the cheek which makes him giggle. How nice. JAMES CONRAD Ladies, it’s a pleasure.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese J.R. RANDOLPH And the best part is that my wife is shopping in Paris right now so I have the house all to myself. JAMES CONRAD Well not really to yourself, I assume you have six houseguests? J.R. RANDOLPH Of course! I can’t throw a party without guests. JAMES CONRAD You certainly know how to treat your employees, J.R. J.R. RANDOLPH I always say a happy employee is a productive employee. JAMES CONRAD Well I’ll leave you be so you can continue enjoying the night with your bevy of beauties, but before I go, since you’re my favorite successful banking baron, do you any investment advice for a semi-legitimate man like myself? J.R. RANDOLPH It’s 1921! Every investment is a great investment, especially in this city! Just remember though, buy low, sell high, and don’t be afraid to use your gut instincts on deals, it’s helped me get where I am today. JAMES CONRAD That’s good advice, anything else I should know? J.R. RANDOLPH If things ever do go south, although I can’t imagine that happening anytime soon, make sure you have a chair when the music stops.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD I’ll keep that in mind. Enjoy the rest of the evening. J.R. RANDOLPH How can I not? The young lady on the other side of J.R. cuts up some food on his plate and feeds him while the woman next to her grabs a napkin and dabs his face after he’s finished chewing. J.R. RANDOLPH Ladies, this has been a lovely night out but I think it’s time for us to retire back to my mansion for our clothing-optional party…and since I’m the boss I’m making no clothes mandatory. Sound good? The ladies all nod in agreement. J.R. RANDOLPH OK, let’s go then. They all stand up and walk towards the door while J.R.’s hands are on the asses of the girls on either side of him. AT THE BAR William Carr has been sitting at the bar enjoying a drink and watching J.R.’s interaction with his ladies while the bartender stands close by washing some glasses. WILLIAM CARR God, what I wouldn’t give to be that man’s penis for one night. JOE THE BARTENDER I’d settle for a night with his bank account. WILLIAM CARR Money. Power. Pussy. That’s how the world works, in that order. Doesn’t matter what you look like or what kind of personality you have. See Joe, that’s where I’ve gone wrong, I have (MORE)
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese WILLIAM CARR (cont’d) all the intangibles, but I’m lacking in the tangibles right now. JOE THE BARTENDER Don’t worry Willy, you’ll get your groove back. I have faith. WILLIAM CARR I’m going to get it back or die trying. JOE THE BARTENDER That’s what I’m afraid of. ON THE OTHER END OF THE BAR ESTHER HARRIS, a stately older socialite in her early 50’s, the 1920’s version of a cougar, is sitting at the bar enjoying a MARTINI when she looks to her right and sees Phillip drinking a cocktail by himself. ESTHER HARRIS My, my, well aren’t you just a strong, handsome boy? PHILLIP Thank you ma’am. ESTHER HARRIS Oh please, the children in my neighborhood and the servants at my country club call me ma’am. You can call me Esther. And you are? PHILLIP Phillip. Esther offers him her hand which he takes. ESTHER HARRIS That’s a lovely name. What do you do Phillip? PHILLIP I’m a dock worker. ESTHER HARRIS Dock worker? That sounds hot and sweaty. What exactly does a dock worker do?
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese PHILLIP I unload the boats that come in and transfer the cargo onto trains and trucks. Building supplies, produce, ammunition and an assortment of other things during the day, rum at night. Esther flirtatiously feels one of his muscles. ESTHER HARRIS Feels like you’ve been doing this for a while. Curiously, Phillip looks around the bar which makes Esther think he’s looking for her husband. ESTHER HARRIS You needn’t worry if you’re looking for my husband. He’s long since passed away. He was a wealthy railroad magnate up in Cleveland, I moved down here to Miami after he died so I could enjoy some peace, serenity and beautiful weather. PHILLIP What’s Cleveland? Esther laughs and pats Phillip on his hand. Precious. ESTHER HARRIS You know you are just adorable.
PHILLIP So what do you do in Miami? ESTHER HARRIS I’m a socialite. PHILLIP What’s a socialite? ESTHER HARRIS Someone that sits around and spends her dead husband’s money. PHILLIP Must be nice.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese ESTHER HARRIS Inheritance always is. You get all of the money with none of the work. PHILLIP Maybe one day I’ll have money. ESTHER HARRIS Honey, you’re in Miami where anything is possible. PHILLIP I hope so. ESTHER HARRIS Say, have you ever seen a house with a pool? PHILLIP A house with a pool? No. ESTHER HARRIS Would you like to? PHILLIP I suppose so, do you have one? ESTHER HARRIS (laughs) Sugar, I have two pools. Why don’t we finish our drinks and I’ll have my driver take us to my home? PHILLIP Sure. Later, James is walking through the club with a MALE PATRON when Esther walks by arm-in-arm with Phillip. ESTHER HARRIS (smiles) Ciao Jimmy. I’ll see you tomorrow night. JAMES CONRAD (to the bar patron) There goes Esther’s next young victim. I almost feel bad for the kid, he has no idea what he’s getting himself into. No, I haven’t.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese EXT. – DOCK ON MIAMI RIVER, CLOSE TO RUM RUNNER’S – NIGHT Under the cover of darkness with only a full moon providing any light, three SMUGGLERS are in their BIMINI BOAT unloading crates of rum and placing them on the dock. SMUGGLER #1 This was an especially good haul tonight gentlemen. SMUGGLER #2 This should make the boss happy. SMUGGLER #3 At least for tonight. Hiding on the dock behind boat equipment with their guns drawn are Mickey, Michael and Elijah who are waiting for the perfect opportunity to hi-jack the smuggler’s load. One of the smugglers carelessly drops a crate in the boat as he tries to transfer it up to the dock. The crate busts open and the six rum bottles inside break on the floor. SMUGGLER #3 Shit. SMUGGLER #1 Be careful over there asshole, this is valuable merchandise. Smuggler #2, who is now standing on the dock organizing the crates, looks down in disgust at the smuggler. SMUGGLER #2 That’s coming out of your end, we’re not covering you for that. SMUGGLER #3 Fine, fine, I’ll take care of it. What do I care? We’re going to make plenty of money off this one shipment alone. MICKEY MARINO No you’re not.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese The two smugglers are startled to see the three gangsters standing on the dock with their guns drawn. Michael is holding the other smuggler, who is on the dock, by his neck from behind. SMUGGLER #1 What the fuck? MICHAEL RICCI Thanks for doing all the heavy lifting boys. We’ll take it from here though. SMUGGLER #3 Oh no, you will not. ELIJAH BERNSTEIN Yes we will, we claim this load as our property now. SMUGGLER #2 Over my dead body! ELIJAH BERNSTEIN OK. The smuggler tries to reach for his gun in his waistband, but he’s not quick enough. Mickey and Elijah shoot and kill the two smugglers on the boat. Michael shoots the smuggler on the dock at point blank range and the man falls down dead. After being shot, one of the smugglers on the boat falls over the side and into the water. Michael uses his foot to kick the dead smuggler off of the dock and into the water below. MICKEY MARINO OK, let’s load up the boat. ELIJAH BERNSTEIN Don’t you mean unload the boat? MICKEY MARINO Well, the way I see it, if we’re already stealing the rum, we might as well steal the boat too.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese MICHAEL RICCI Yes, it’s not like those poor saps have any use for it anymore. ELIJAH BERNSTEIN Good thinking. MICKEY MARINO I am a criminal innovator. Mickey and Elijah climb down to the boat and pick up the remaining dead smuggler from the floor. ELIJAH BERNSTEIN This is a heavy motherfucker. MICKEY MARINO Maybe you’re just a weak little bitch. ELIJAH BERNSTEIN Shut the fuck up. After struggling initially, the two get the body up and over the side of the boat, throwing it into the water. Once the body is out of the way, Michael quickly hands the crates down to Mickey and Elijah in the boat. Michael climbs down to join the other two on the boat when the last crate is passed down. MICHAEL RICCI Let’s get the hell out of here. Elijah unties the boat from the mooring and Mickey drives the boat out of its’ slip and down the river. As the boat speeds down the river, Mickey shoots his PISTOL off in the air while taking big gulps from a bottle of rum. Whoo hoo! MICKEY MARINO Whoo hoo! I love Miami!
INT. – RUM RUNNER’S SPEAKEASY William is sitting at the bar, hammered, with a near empty cocktail in front of him.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese WILLIAM CARR (looks at the bartender) Joe, Joe, I’ll take another one, then another one after that. Charles takes a seat next to William. CHARLES FRANKLIN William my friend. Are you OK? WILLIAM CARR Charles, look at me. I’m so far from being OK. CHARLES FRANKLIN What’s wrong this time? WILLIAM CARR Same story, different day. CHARLES FRANKLIN William, you ever think things would turn around if you weren’t stumbling drunk everyday? WILLIAM CARR Yes. CHARLES FRANKLIN So why do you continue drinking? I mean don’t get me wrong, 10, 12 cocktails a night is fine, but you take it to an extreme level. WILLIAM CARR Why bother doing something if you’re not going to take it to the extreme? Joe drops off a cocktail to William. WILLIAM CARR Joe, you might as well leave the bottle. JOE THE BARTENDER You’re the customer. Joe leaves the bottle in front of William then walks away.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese WILLIAM CARR Now, what were we talking about? CHARLES FRANKLIN Your drinking. WILLIAM CARR It’s pretty good, isn’t it. I finally found something I’m good at. CHARLES FRANKLIN Says the best-selling author. WILLIAM CARR What’s that supposed to mean? CHARLES FRANKLIN You got talent my friend, but I fear you’re wasting it away at the bottom of that rum bottle. WILLIAM CARR Life isn’t as easy as you think. CHARLES FRANKLIN It doesn’t have to be unnecessarily hard either. WILLIAM CARR (stares at Charles) Do you want to arm wrestle? CHARLES FRANKLIN (laughs) No, that’s quite alright. WILLIAM CARR Because I’ll take you on. I’ll even give you a two second head start. CHARLES FRANKLIN William, I see a lot of good in you, and I love your writing. And because of that I want to do something for you. WILLIAM CARR What’s that?
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese CHARLES FRANKLIN You’re a man in need of a release. WILLIAM CARR How so? CHARLES FRANKLIN You see that sexy redhead sitting a few seats down from you? William looks down the bar and sees Dorothy sitting there smiling at him. She gives him a flirtatious wave so he awkwardly waves back. WILLIAM CARR Yes, she’s pretty. CHARLES FRANKLIN And she’s yours. At least for the night. WILLIAM CARR Why? CHARLES FRANKLIN I figure it’s time for you to put down the bottle, at least for a few hours. And maybe the touch of a woman will reinvigorate you, jumpstart your mind again. WILLIAM CARR I can’t pay you for this. CHARLES FRANKLIN (laughs) Don’t worry about it my friend, my desired payment is your promise to get back to writing again. WILLIAM CARR I’ll see what I can do. CHARLES FRANKLIN I know that’s the best I can probably ask for under the current circumstances. So enjoy. WILLIAM CARR I hope I just not too drunk to fuck.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese CHARLES FRANKLIN William, I wouldn’t be too worried. She is drop dead gorgeous, her looks should certainly be a cure for whiskey dick. WILLIAM CARR I hope so. Unbeknownst to William, Dorothy has sneaked up from behind and put her arm around him. Before he realizes who it is, Dorothy plants a firm kiss on his lips. DOROTHY You ready for me baby? WILLIAM CARR That depends, did you hear anything I just said? DOROTHY No. WILLIAM CARR Then I’m ready. DOROTHY Let’s go back to your place. WILLIAM CARR Just give me one second. (calls out to Joe) Joe, I’ll take my next drink to go. William stands up and shakes Charles’ hand. WILLIAM CARR Thank you Charles. William grabs the drink that Joe just placed in front of him and holds Dorothy’s hand. DOROTHY Yes, thank you Charles. Charles secretly places some folded-up bills in the palm of Dorothy’s hand.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese CHARLES FRANKLIN My pleasure. You kids have fun tonight. Go easy on my friend. DOROTHY I will, unless your friend wants it rough. WILLIAM CARR Let’s see how the night progresses first. Charles remains at the bar by himself, drinking his cocktail while sporting a big smile on his face, satisfied with his accomplishment. Just as he’s about to stand up, Mayor Beck walks over and places his hand on Charles’ back so he remains seated then he sits down next to him. Mr. Franklin. MAYOR BECK Mr. Charles Franklin.
CHARLES FRANKLIN Good evening Mr. Mayor. MAYOR BECK I hear you’re doing pretty good with your real estate ventures these days. CHARLES FRANKLIN Business is great, I can’t complain. MAYOR BECK I also hear you’re planning on developing some property to the south of here. CHARLES FRANKLIN I’m thinking about it. MAYOR BECK Construction can be tricky in this city. Ships can get stuck in the harbor, trains can get derailed. I’ve heard of stories where real estate developers had all these buyers lined up, but the supplies never showed up. No supplies, no building. Without the building, the buyers bailed and the developer went belly up.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese CHARLES FRANKLIN That’s unfortunate. MAYOR BECK You know what I’m saying? CHARLES FRANKLIN I’m not sure exactly, why don’t you enlighten me? MAYOR BECK I’m saying that these misfortunes can hit any developer at any time. CHARLES FRANKLIN (curiously) What do you want from me? MAYOR BECK It’s really what you should want from me. CHARLES FRANKLIN And what’s that? MAYOR BECK I can make sure those ships don’t get grounded and the trains don’t derail so that you can freely develop whatever property you want. CHARLES FRANKLIN I see. MAYOR BECK To put it more bluntly, if you can pay off that redheaded whore to fuck your degenerate writer friend, then you can pay me off for the betterment of your business. CHARLES FRANKLIN Now I understand what you’re saying. MAYOR BECK I’ll take $500 for now. I’ll also be monitoring your business. If you become more successful, I’ll be coming back for more.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese CHARLES FRANKLIN Does the police chief know you do this? MAYOR BECK Who do you think takes a ten percent cut? Feel free to ask him about my business ethics, he’s around here somewhere. Charles takes out his wallet and hands the Mayor a stack of money. CHARLES FRANKLIN Lucky for you I’m primarily a cash business and I carry a lot of it around. MAYOR BECK Maybe I should’ve asked for $1,000? CHARLES FRANKLIN $500 is good enough. MAYOR BECK You are right, it does work for me. The Mayor quickly counts the money then puts most of it in his jacket pocket. He stands up and pats Charles on the face. MAYOR BECK Pleasure doing business with you Mr. Franklin. Believe me, you made the right decision. CHARLES FRANKLIN The pleasure’s all yours. MAYOR BECK It’s time for me to go home and make love to my wife. To add insult to injury, Mayor Beck takes Charles’ halfdrank cocktail and walks off. CHARLES FRANKLIN You’re going to take my drink too?!?
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese MAYOR BECK I’ll need it if I’m going home to make love to my wife. On his way out the door, Beck walks by Chief Novak, who is standing towards the entrance talking to a MIDDLE-AGED COUPLE, and very nonchalantly hands him some cash from the bribe he just took from Charles. INT. – WILLIAM CARR’S HOUSE, BEDROOM William is on top of Dorothy, slowly and rhythmically fucking her while simultaneously drinking straight from a bottle of rum. DOROTHY (moaning) Oh William, oh William, you feel so good. WILLIAM CARR You too baby doll. DOROTHY Do you have to drink while we fuck though? William stops fucking and just looks at her in the eyes. WILLIAM CARR (deadpans) Yes. (pauses) May I continue? DOROTHY Go ahead. William continues fucking her. DOROTHY (cont’d) Freak. William stops fucking her again. WILLIAM CARR I’m not a freak. OK? I’m not a freak.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese DOROTHY Whatever you say. Say it. OK. WILLIAM CARR Say that I’m not a freak.
DOROTHY You’re not a freak.
WILLIAM CARR May I go back to fucking now? DOROTHY Why don’t you give me a sip of that rum first? William takes a big sip from the bottle of rum then positions his mouth right over hers and spits the rum into her mouth. Next he arches Dorothy’s back and pours the bottle of rum on her neck. The rum slowly drips down her chest, over and between her breasts, down her stomach and into her crotch. He places his head in her crotch and works his way up her body, licking the rum off her stomach, chest and neck. He moves above her neck and makes out with her passionately. While kissing her, William lifts the bottle up and pours it on their lips. There’s so much rum being poured that Dorothy almost drowns under it. She coughs and pushes William away. DOROTHY You’re naughty. WILLIAM CARR I am. DOROTHY I like that. WILLIAM CARR Do you want me to get naughtier? DOROTHY Yes.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese William takes Dorothy’s stockings off and ties her wrists to the bedposts with them. DOROTHY Kinky. WILLIAM CARR Ever fuck a writer before? DOROTHY No, but I did blow a reporter once. WILLIAM CARR (looks at her condescendingly) Not the same thing honey. DOROTHY Oh, OK. WILLIAM CARR I can tell you fucking a writer is a majestic experience. DOROTHY That’s quite the ego you have there. WILLIAM CARR It’s justified though. DOROTHY I’ll be the judge of that. WILLIAM CARR I’m not too worried. We’re creative thinkers, so get ready for some weird shit. DOROTHY Like what? William sees a clear plastic bag sitting on his floor. WILLIAM CARR I want to suffocate you. I want to bring you to the brink of unconsciousness at which point we’ll orgasm together. Once I’m done coming, I’ll (MORE)
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese WILLIAM CARR (cont’d) take the bag off your head and we’ll fall asleep. DOROTHY That sounds dangerous. WILLIAM CARR (smiles) It is. DOROTHY I…I don’t know… WILLIAM CARR (interrupts) Don’t forget, I’m the one paying. (pauses) Come on, it’ll be fun. DOROTHY You promise it’ll be OK? WILLIAM CARR Yes, don’t worry, I’ll take care of you. William reaches down and picks the bag up from the floor. Dorothy grabs his hand to stop him just as William is about to put it over her head. DOROTHY One last thing, I want to make sure I’m safe so if I start to get scared or things become too intense, I’m going to squeeze and twist your balls to get you to stop. That’ll be our safe sign. WILLIAM CARR Vicious, but fair. Just don’t twist too hard. DOROTHY I’ll twist hard enough to get you to stop.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese William gives Dorothy a soft kiss on the lips before putting the bag over her head and securing it tightly around her neck. WILLIAM CARR You good? A wide-eyed Dorothy pretty nervous but after she shakes her head “yes” William mounts her and engages in rough sex. She breathes deeply in the bag as it contracts with every inhale and expands with every exhale. INT. – RUM RUNNERS SPEAKEASY CASINO ROOM Within a crowded, smoke-filled backroom sits the casino which is stuffed with several tables featuring popular games – blackjack, craps, poker and roulette. John Pelham is standing anxiously at a roulette table with several other gamblers as the ball spins endlessly around the wheel. John gets more nervous as the ball slows down. ball settles in its final resting spot. PETER, THE ROULETTE DEALER Red 23. John loses again and takes out his anger by pumping his fist in the air. JOHN PELHAM Oh darn. James, who has been making his way around the room, walks up to John. JAMES CONRAD Lost again John? JOHN PELHAM I should’ve went with my original instinct and just not play tonight. Finally the
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD Nonsense, you can’t win if you don’t play. JOHN PELHAM But I’m not winning. I don’t get it, I’m even at Peter’s table and I’m not winning. He’s my lucky charm, I never lose this much when I’m at his table. JAMES CONRAD How much are you down by? JOHN PELHAM $20, $25 dollars. JAMES CONRAD Oh come on now, that’s peanuts to a high roller such as yourself. JOHN PELHAM It adds up quickly though. JAMES CONRAD Well listen, if you stop now you’ll end the night a loser. You don’t want to be a loser, do you? John takes a cigarette out from a case inside his jacket and James lights it for him. JOHN PELHAM I suppose not. JAMES CONRAD At this point, continuing to play is the only way you’ll win tonight. Peter spins the ball around the wheel. PETER, THE ROULETTE DEALER All bets on the table. Without asking, James picks up one of John’s chips and nonchalantly places it on black 35. PETER, THE ROULETTE DEALER Black 35.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD (smiles) See. Your luck is turning around already. After showing off his usual incredible luck, James casually walks away from John, considering his job of getting him to spend more money done. JOHN PELHAM (happily) Oh, thank you Jimmy. Thank you very much! JAMES CONRAD Just keep on spending. JOHN PELHAM I will! As James continues walking through the casino, he’s approached by Jeeves who is escorting two well dressed, middle-aged DETECTIVES with him. JEEVES Excuse me sir. JAMES CONRAD What is it Jeeves? JEEVES Sorry to interrupt your night but these two gentlemen from the police department were looking for you. JAMES CONRAD Is that right? So you brought them back to the casino? JEEVES I’m sorry sir, I was unable to find you and these men were quite insistent. DETECTIVE JOHNSON Mr. Conrad I assure you we have no interest in your gambling activities. James looks approvingly around the casino, noticing just how full it is.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD You seem to be the only two men that don’t. James sits down at a table and lights a cigarette while the two detectives remain standing around him. JEEVES I’m sorry sir, but may I be excused so I can return to my post. JAMES CONRAD Go ahead Jeeves. JEEVES Thank you sir. JAMES CONRAD So what can I do for you gentlemen? DETECTIVE JOHNSON I’m Detective Johnson and this is Detective Smith from the Miami police department. JAMES CONRAD Does Chief Novak know you’re here? DETECTIVE JOHNSON No sir. JAMES CONRAD Well he’s at the bar, probably on his eighth rum and coke by now. You may want to stop by and have a drink with him on your way out, would probably be good for your careers. DETECTIVE JOHNSON We may just do that. JAMES CONRAD (slightly annoyed) OK, I assume we’re done with the pleasantries now, so why are you here? DETECTIVE SMITH As Detective Johnson said, we’re not (MORE)
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese DETECTIVE SMITH (cont’d) interested in your gambling activities or your bootlegging operations, but what we do have an interest in is a murder that occurred after a patron left this establishment last night. JAMES CONRAD Where was he killed? DETECTIVE SMITH At his house. JAMES CONRAD (unfazed) Miami is a dangerous city, you’re not even safe at home. DETECTIVE SMITH Didn’t used to be that way until you carpetbaggers came down here to jump on the real estate boom and ignore Prohibition. JAMES CONRAD You might want to brush up on your detective skills, detective. You’ve been misinformed, I’m a native, born and raised in this great city of Miami. DETECTIVE SMITH That doesn’t change the fact that you offer a sanctuary for garbage to congregate. JAMES CONRAD Surely, you’re not blaming me for the problems that come with Prohibition? DETECTIVE SMITH What I’m… Sensing that Smith might be starting an argument, Detective Johnson decides to cut him off. DETECTIVE JOHNSON (interrupts) What Detective Smith is saying is that (MORE)
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese DETECTIVE JOHNSON (cont’d) he wants to stick to the crime at hand and not get into an intellectual debate over a Constitutional amendment. JAMES CONRAD (still annoyed) Let me know if you gentlemen find another intellectual for me to have a debate with. DETECTIVE JOHNSON I’ve heard that you could be a little ornery. JAMES CONRAD Only when I’m sober. DETECTIVE JOHNSON Perhaps I shall buy you a drink then. JAMES CONRAD I don’t like drinking alone. James raises his hand to get the waiter’s attention. JAMES CONRAD I’ll have three rum cocktails for me and my two new friends. The waiter takes the order and walks away at which point James kicks a chair out from the table signaling the detectives to sit down. JAMES CONRAD Please, have a seat. DETECTIVE SMITH Mr. Conrad, we’re on duty and can’t drink. JAMES CONRAD That’s a damn shame. I guess I’ll have the three for myself. DETECTIVE JOHNSON No, we’ll humor Jimmy and have a cocktail.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD I think I just figured out who the other intellect is. DETECTIVE JOHNSON (cont’d) As long as Jimmy humors us and talks. JAMES CONRAD I don’t usually have much to say. DETECTIVE SMITH Did you know a Richard Braun? JAMES CONRAD What kind of question is that? course I did. DETECTIVE SMITH How did you know him? JAMES CONRAD He’s the man that was murdered, right? DETECTIVE SMITH Yes. JAMES CONRAD And you already said he was a patron here, right? DETECTIVE SMITH Yes. JAMES CONRAD As the owner and host of this establishment it’s my job to know all my guests. I wouldn’t be a very good host if I didn’t. I see. well… DETECTIVE SMITH So if you know your guests so Of
JAMES CONRAD (interrupts) Hold on, don’t put words in my mouth. I said I know them, but knowing them well is another story. Take a look (MORE)
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD (cont’d) around here, this is a place filled with characters from all walks of life, every one of them has a thousand stories to tell. To get to know them well would be a major undertaking and I just don’t have the time, or interest, in that. The waiter comes back and drops off the drinks for the three men. DETECTIVE SMITH Did you know him well enough to know if he had any enemies? JAMES CONRAD This is Miami, everyone has enemies. DETECTIVE SMITH Do you? JAMES CONRAD Not that I know of. DETECTIVE SMITH (to Detective Johnson) This is going nowhere. DETECTIVE JOHNSON Patience. JAMES CONRAD Detective, I’m just answering your questions, I’m not trying to be difficult. DETECTIVE SMITH But you are difficult. JAMES CONRAD That probably explains why I’m still a single man in my forties. DETECTIVE SMITH Did you know of any specific enemies to Mr. Braun?
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese DETECTIVE JOHNSON We heard he was in the smuggling business, do you know anything about that? JAMES CONRAD A man’s business affairs are none of my concern, neither are his personal ones. DETECTIVE SMITH It stands to reason he’d be a smuggler if he hung out here every night. JAMES CONRAD That’s an unfair criticism. DETECTIVE SMITH How so? JAMES CONRAD I host politicians, business tycoons, actors, actresses, socialites, doctors, lawyers, newlyweds, average Jack & Jills and dockworkers. There’s bad seeds everywhere, why should my club be any different? DETECTIVE JOHNSON So Jimmy, you don’t know who might’ve killed him? Not even a list of usual suspects? JAMES CONRAD No, but it is unfortunate that he’s dead, he was always a good tipper… and he paid his bill every night. He’ll be missed. The two detectives stand up with Johnson taking one more sip from his drink. DETECTIVE JOHNSON Thank you for the drink. JAMES CONRAD My pleasure.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese DETECTIVE JOHNSON Please let us know if you hear anything. JAMES CONRAD Sorry gentlemen, but snitching is bad for business, particularly my business. You’ll have to figure this one out on your own. DETECTIVE JOHNSON So you’re not going to help us out? JAMES CONRAD I only help myself out. DETECTIVE SMITH I’ll be keeping an eye on you Mr. Conrad. Detective Johnson grabs Smith’s shoulder to lead him away. DETECTIVE JOHNSON Let’s leave Jimmy alone now Detective. JAMES CONRAD Feel free to stop on by again gentlemen. Your credit is good here as long as you pay it off in a timely manner. James stands up just as the two detectives leave and walks over to the bar in the casino where George is hanging out drinking a glass of water. GEORGE MCCARTHY What was that about, Jimmy? JAMES CONRAD Two detectives came by investigating a murder. A murder? GEORGE MCCARTHY Who died?
JAMES CONRAD The list is too long to remember. GEORGE MCCARTHY OK, but who was it in this particular case?
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD Richard Braun. GEORGE MCCARTHY (surprised) Dick Braun? JAMES CONRAD One in the same. James takes another cigarette out of his inside jacket pocket and lights up. GEORGE MCCARTHY Jesus, he was one of my biggest buyers. JAMES CONRAD Mine too. GEORGE MCCARTHY (thinking) Who the hell am I going to replace him with? JAMES CONRAD Hang around here long enough and I’m sure you’ll have them lining up to replace him. GEORGE MCCARTHY Who did this? JAMES CONRAD The cops don’t know. GEORGE MCCARTHY But do you know? JAMES CONRAD Not at all. GEORGE MCCARTHY You have your suspicions though. JAMES CONRAD I always have suspicions. GEORGE MCCARTHY So who do you think it was?
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD A gentleman never tells on the nefarious actions of others. That’s lesson one for living a long life. GEORGE MCCARTHY But Jimmy, I need retaliation, I can’t just have my buyers clipped. JAMES CONRAD I understand that. But I have my own business to maintain as well. GEORGE MCCARTHY Jimmy… JAMES CONRAD (interrupts) George, I’d help you out if I could, but I can’t. GEORGE MCCARTHY You said you know who did it though. JAMES CONRAD Listen carefully when I speak George, I never said I knew, I said I have my suspicions. There’s a big difference… and a man shouldn’t take any rash action based on pure speculation. GEORGE MCCARTHY And you won’t even tell me who you’re suspicious of? JAMES CONRAD That wouldn’t be fair to the man if my suspicions are wrong. George takes a sip from his glass of water. GEORGE MCCARTHY Jimmy, you’re certainly a hard nut to crack. JAMES CONRAD I don’t think I am, you just need to know how to crack me.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese GEORGE MCCARTHY Well regardless, I can’t believe someone would kill Dick Braun, he was a good man. I didn’t think he had any enemies. JAMES CONRAD That’s the difference between you and I George, you think there’s good in people, I know there’s bad. GEORGE MCCARTHY (laughs) That’s an interesting way of looking at life. JAMES CONRAD It’s the only way. George takes another sip of water. JAMES CONRAD Good night George, and enjoy your water, it’s about time for me to close up for the night. James shakes George’s hand and walks away. NEXT MORNING INT. – ESTHER’S MANSION, BEDROOM Phillip is pumping away on top of Esther in bed as the morning light shines through the window. Her bra is pulled down below her chest while her girdle is rolled up to her stomach, the sheets only covering the two of them up to their thighs. Esther’s head is slightly tilted back as they both moan in ecstasy. After several moments, Esther suddenly grabs Phillip by the arms and turns him over so that she’s on top riding him while her ass gyrates above and below the sheets. ESTHER HARRIS Fuck me big boy, fuck me hard you hot, handsome young stud.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese Showing her predilection of rough sex, she clenches his chest, slaps his face and chokes him at different points while she fucks him. PHILIIP God damn it. ESTHER HARRIS Phillip, you’re so hung like a horse. PHILLIP I am. ESTHER HARRIS So I’m going to ride you like one. PHILLIP Do it. ESTHER HARRIS You like me fucking you, right? PHILLIP Yes, it’s a little rough though. ESTHER HARRIS Take it like a man and don’t act like such a bitch. She grinds on him until they both let out one last scream in unison as they get off at the same time. With the sex over, Esther climbs off Phillip and lays down next to him. She takes a cigarette out from the pack on her nightstand and lights up, taking a deep puff and letting out an impressive circle of smoke. Esther looks at Phillip and patronizingly pats him on the head. ESTHER HARRIS You’re a good kid. PHILLIP And you fuck like a nineteen year old.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese ESTHER HARRIS (laughs) Cute. It’s decades of experience kid. Once you have a fifty-three year old, it’s hard to go back to ladies your age, isn’t it? PHILLIP Yes. They’re just dumb little girls compared to you. ESTHER HARRIS You want to go again? PHILLIP Jesus, I need at least five minutes to recover. Esther puts her right hand below the sheets and starts giving him a hand job. ESTHER HARRIS I’ll give you two. Then she puts her cigarette down on the nightstand and slinks completely below the sheets to give him a blow job. EXT. – DOCK ON MIAMI RIVER, CLOSE TO RUM RUNNER’S – DAY James is smoking a cigarette by himself while hosing down the dock on a peaceful early afternoon with only the sounds of the exotic birds flying above breaking the silence. After finishing his cigarette he puts the hose down and sits on a bench along the dock. He takes out another cigarette and lights it up as he watches the birds fly around the Bay to relax. INT. – WILLIAM CARR’S HOUSE, BEDROOM William is sleeping in his bed with Dorothy fully underneath the covers next to him. The bright light from the rising sun wakes him up. William, completely hung over, rubs his eyes and wonders to himself where he is.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese He sees a nearly empty rum bottle sitting on the nightstand next to him, so he instinctively grabs it and drinks the very last drops left. After he’s done, William turns to his side and realizes there’s a lump in his bed. He pulls the covers to the side around Dorothy’s midsection revealing her hip. She’s sleeping on her stomach so he decides to slip his hand under the covers and caress her ass. WILLIAM CARR Good morning, honey. That was incredible last night, wasn’t it? I told you it was going to get weird. William notices that Dorothy isn’t saying anything. WILLIAM CARR I guess you’re not much of a morning person, neither am I which is why I usually sleep until two. William grabs a firm hold of her ass looking for a reaction but she still doesn’t say anything. WILLIAM CARR Dorothy? (shakes her hip) Dorothy? (shakes her harder) Dorothy! Finally, William pulls the blanket completely off, revealing Dorothy’s dead, lifeless body with the plastic bag still secured over her head. WILLIAM CARR (screaming) What the fuck!?! William crawls up to the corner of his bed and covers himself in the blanket as he screams uncontrollably. After gathering himself, he unties the plastic bag and takes it off her.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese He slaps her in the face a couple times to see if there’s any signs of life but she remains motionless. Baby! Baby! WILLIAM CARR Come on, wake up!
William lifts Dorothy up from the mattress and hugs her against his chest as he runs his fingers through her hair. Come on! WILLIAM CARR (cont’d) Don’t die! Don’t die on me!
Dorothy’s death slowly starts to register with him as he sways from side to side with her lifeless body. WILLIAM CARR Fuck. Fuck!!! William begins to cries and then kisses her on the cheek. EXT. – RUM RUNNERS SPEAKEASY – AFTERNOON A crying, disheveled William knocks on the front door, after a few seconds it’s opened by James who immediately notices something’s wrong with him. JAMES CONRAD Damn William, you look like more of a mess than usual. What’s wrong? WILLIAM CARR I, I, I fucked up. I need help Jimmy. James Conrad It certainly looks like you do. WILLIAM CARR (weeping) Please Jimmy. JAMES CONRAD Come in. INT. – RUM RUNNERS SPEAKEASY James leads William into the vacant club and over to the bar.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD What happened? WILLIAM CARR I…I…I don’t know. JAMES CONRAD Come, have a seat at the bar. William sits down as James walks behind the bar and prepares a drink for him. JAMES CONRAD (cont’d) Let me make you a drink. WILLIAM CARR Make it a double. JAMES CONRAD I’ll make it a triple just to be on the safe side. James makes a drink for himself after passing one to William. JAMES CONRAD So? WILLIAM CARR I fucked up. JAMES CONRAD I got that already. WILLIAM CARR No, but I really fucked up. JAMES CONRAD What exactly do you mean? WILLIAM CARR Remember that hooker I took home with me last night? JAMES CONRAD (cautiously) Yes. Cute redhead, no syphilis as far as I know.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese WILLIAM CARR She’s dead. William quickly follows that comment up with two long gulps of his drink. JAMES CONRAD (coldly) How’d that happen?
Really? I don’t fucking up this next to
WILLIAM CARR know, one minute I was on top her and the next I was waking afternoon and she was lying me, cold and lifeless. (thinking) Maybe I was drugged. JAMES CONRAD I don’t think you needed drugs to pass out, I think the 26 rum cocktails you had took care of that just fine. WILLIAM CARR I don’t know what the hell happened. JAMES CONRAD You don’t have any idea. WILLIAM CARR No. She woke up with a bag on her head though, I don’t know what that was about. Maybe she was into some really sexually deviant behavior. JAMES CONRAD Or maybe you were. So you don’t know how a bag ended up on your hooker’s head? WILLIAM CARR No, no idea how that could’ve… William abruptly stops in the middle of his sentence when he finally remembers what happened. WILLIAM CARR (cont’d) …Oh shit. I think accidentally killed her.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD How did you manage that? WILLIAM CARR I remember now, I was playing a game of asphyxiation with her. JAMES CONRAD Sounds a little dangerous for two drunkards to play that. WILLIAM CARR I must’ve passed out before I took the bag off her head. JAMES CONRAD So she suffocated? William pounds on the bar with his fist a few times. WILLIAM CARR Shit, shit, shit. I’m such a fucking drunk. JAMES CONRAD That goes without saying. WILLIAM CARR What am I going to do? I’m screwed, I’m so fucking screwed. Do you know what they’ll do to me in prison? A good looking gentleman like myself? JAMES CONRAD You’re not going to jail. WILLIAM CARR (ignoring James) They’re going to slice me up in there. JAMES CONRAD (annoyed) What did I say? You’re not going to jail. WILLIAM CARR How do you know?
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD William, I like you. You’re a good customer of mine and I respect that. WILLIAM CARR Thank you Jimmy. JAMES CONRAD So if you listen to me and you do what I say, you’ll avoid prison. WILLIAM CARR OK. JAMES CONRAD Tonight’s the 4th of July right? You’re going to bring the body here and you’ll help a couple of my men load it onto one of the boats docked out back. Then you’ll dump the body offshore during the height of the fireworks. No one at the club will notice anything, they’ll all be on the other side of the dock watching the show. WILLIAM CARR We’re just going to throw her out like last week’s leftovers? JAMES CONRAD William, she was a prostitute. She had no family, and few friends, in this city. From what I know, she came down to Miami from some small town in Indiana. Her parents, if they’re still alive, won’t know where to begin looking for her, if they ever find out she’s disappeared in the first place. No one will miss her. So take my advice, bring her body here tonight and you’ll take care of this little problem with my men. OK? WILLIAM CARR I…I can’t do that.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD You are going to do it. It’s the only way out for you. WILLIAM CARR (reluctantly) OK, I’ll do it. JAMES CONRAD You’re making the right choice William. WILLIAM CARR I feel like shit though. JAMES CONRAD You should, you’re not a bad person, you just screwed up, but we’ll fix it. Be here at 8 o’clock with the body. LATER THAT NIGHT EXT. – RUM RUNNERS SPEAKEASY, PARKING LOT – NIGHT William pulls into the packed parking lot and finds one of the last remaining spaces. He gets out of his car and walks to his trunk, looking around cautiously to make sure no one’s watching him. Sweating profusely from his nervousness, he takes a very large bag out of the trunk and walks with it across the parking lot while struggling with the heavy weight of it. Suddenly a voice comes out of nowhere. DR. ERNEST STRATFORD, a tall, lanky, middle-aged gentleman is standing in the parking lot with his pretty, middle-aged wife, SALLY. William? DR. ERNEST STRATFORD What do you got there?
WILLIAM CARR (startled) Doctor, what are you doing here? DR. ERNEST STRATFORD Don’t be silly, I’m here to enjoy the Fourth of July festivities with my wife. (MORE)
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese DR. ERNEST STATFORD (cont’d) Speaking of which, please forgive my poor manners. William, this is my lovely wife, Sally. Sally, this is William Carr, one of the preeminent American writers of our time. Sally extends the back of her hand to William. SALLY STRATFORD How do you do Mr. Carr? William, still startled but not wanting to offend her, puts the bag down and kisses Sally on the back of her hand. WILLIAM CARR Your husband has a doctorate in hyperbole, but it is certainly a pleasure to meet you Ms. Stratford. DR. ERNEST STRATFORD So what do you have in the bag? WILLIAM CARR (nervously) What? The bag. DR. ERNEST STRATFORD What’s in it?
WILLIAM CARR Oh…umm…just fishing equipment. DR. ERNEST STRATFORD You’re going fishing now? WILLIAM CARR No, tomorrow morning. I just wanted to get everything on my friend’s boat now, rather than doing it at 6 am tomorrow. DR. ERNEST STRATFORD I hear it’s been some pretty good fishing these days. WILLIAM CARR Yeah. Well Dr. Stratford I don’t mean to sound rude but I really must be going.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese DR. ERNEST STRATFORD Oh sure, certainly. Will I see you inside? WILLIAM CARR Yes, later on. William grabs his bag and continues walking over to the dock while Ernest and his wife head to the club. SALLY STRATFORD Mr. Carr seemed very flustered and fidgety. DR. ERNEST STRATFORD Yes, he’s quite the eccentric personality. SALLY STRATFORD Well do you think he’s OK? DR. ERNEST STRATFORD He’s fine, he probably just hasn’t had a drink in a couple of hours. Nothing a strong shot of rum can’t take care of. Ernest knocks on the front door three times and, after a few moments, Jeeves opens it. DR. ERNEST STRATFORD Good evening Jeeves. JEEVES And to you doctor. INT. – RUM RUNNERS SPEAKEASY James Conrad, dressed in a crisp white tuxedo, walks up to door and greets the happy couple with a hearty handshake for Ernest and a kiss on the cheek for Sally. JAMES CONRAD Ernest, good to see you chap. DR. ERNEST STRATFORD Word has it this is the place to be for the Fourth of July.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD I’d like to think that this is the place to be for the other 364 days of the year as well. DR. ERNEST STRATFORD Well that goes without saying. JAMES CONRAD Come on in, the liquor is flowing and the band just started up. Dr. Stratford and his wife walk into the main room of the club and see that the tables have been cleared away for the night’s celebration. The open area is filled in tuxedos and women in other to the jazz music ORCHESTRA in the corner with very well dressed patrons, men evening gowns, dancing with each being played by the BIG BAND of the room.
Ernest and Sally immediately join the rest of the revelers and begin to dance. After some time James casually walks over to ALBERT, the band leader, who is in the middle of conducting the orchestra. Not content to wait for the song to be over, James puts his hand on his elbow to get his attention. ALBERT (whispers) James, can this wait until the end of the song? JAMES CONRAD (whispers) Albert, can you play something a little more up-tempo? ALBERT Sir? JAMES CONRAD (whispers) Not everyone is dancing, I want every single person in the house on the dance (MORE)
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD (cont’d) floor. This is supposed to be the best party in Miami tonight, let’s act like it. ALBERT Yes sir. Albert abruptly stops the orchestra in mid-song then instructs them to play quicker, more upbeat jazz music. James stands there for a few moments listening to the song and watches as the handful of patrons who weren’t dancing join the rest of the crowd on the dance floor. He smiles as he watches this and pats Albert on the shoulder as a sign of approval before walking away. JAMES CONRAD Very good Albert. ALBERT Thank you sir. EXT. – DOCK ON MIAMI RIVER, CLOSE TO RUM RUNNER’S – NIGHT William is walking down the dock carrying the bag when he sees EDWARD, a Rum Runners’ employee, standing in a boat waving him over. EDWARD William. WILLIAM CARR Who are you? EDWARD Edward, I work at Rum Runners, Jimmy told me I had to take care of a favor for you. WILLIAM CARR I practically live at Rum Runners, how come I don’t know you? EDWARD I work in the kitchen.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese WILLIAM CARR OK. (looks at the other man in the boat) And who’s that? EDWARD This is Ralph, he also works for Jimmy. He’s coming along to provide protection in case we run into any law enforcement. WILLIAM CARR Do you think we’ll run into any trouble? EDWARD No, but you can never be too sure. (looks at the bag) Is that the body? WILLIAM CARR Yes. EDWARD Throw it down to me. Edward stretches out his arm to accept the bag from the dock. WILLIAM CARR (hesitates) Ummm… EDWARD (interrupts) Come on, she’s already dead, what could you possibly do to hurt her? Kill her twice? William throws the bag down to Edward who catches it and places it on the floor of the boat. EDWARD Good, she’s not that heavy. Edward opens the bag to take a look but can only see her face which is partially covered by her flowing red hair. EDWARD She’s a pretty girl. Such a shame.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese William climbs down into the boat. WILLIAM CARR Let’s just get this over with. RALPH, a younger man with a rough and tumble look to him, walks over and takes a peek into the bag as well. RALPH I brought some cinderblocks to help weigh down the body, let’s load them into the bag. The three men each take a cinderblock and put it into the bag, then Edward closes it up. EDWARD That should do it. WILLIAM CARR Are you sure? EDWARD William, she’ll never be found. Either she’ll live forever on the bottom of the Bay, or she’ll be eaten by a shark. No one will ever know, but at the very least she’ll be out of your life. WILLIAM CARR OK, let’s just go and do this. EDWARD (looks at Ralph) Untie us. Ralph unties the boat from the mooring then Edward drives it away from the dock. INT. – RUM RUNNERS’ SPEAKEASY James steps up on the bar to get everyone’s attention. JAMES CONRAD (yells) Excuse me ladies and gentlemen! me!
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese The band notices that James is speaking so they stop playing so he can get the attention of the crowd. JAMES CONRAD Thank you to all for coming out to Rum Runners tonight, and I hope this Fourth of July celebration is the first of many here to come. With that said, we have an excellent fireworks display planned for you all tonight that’ll be shot off over the bay. They’re scheduled to begin fifteen minutes from now, so please, grab another drink, come outside and claim a prime spot of real estate on the lawn. But please exit in an orderly fashion, every spot will have an unobstructed view of the fireworks, so you needn’t rush. James steps off the bar as many of the patrons begin to file out the back of the club while others make a mad dash to the bar to get another drink. As soon as James gets down, a DRUNK REVELER stumbles into him and jovially puts his arm around his shoulders. DRUNK REVELER (smiling) Jimmy you son-of-a-bitch.
JAMES CONRAD How are you doing friend? DRUNK REVELER This is the best, greatest party I’ve ever been too, I hope it never ends. JAMES CONRAD Such a ringing endorsement for a 4th of July party that hasn’t even set off its’ fireworks yet. DRUNK REVELER (slurring) No seriously, I hope it never ends.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD You’re in luck, we’re staying open until dawn tomorrow so it just might feel like it’ll never end. DRUNK REVELER That’s the best news I’ve heard all summer. James looks at the drunk man’s champagne glass and notices it’s nearly empty… JAMES CONRAD Come friend, let me pour you another glass of champagne. …So he grabs a bottle of champagne that’s sitting on the bar and pours him a glass. DRUNK REVELER Thank you Jimmy! Thank you Jimmy! are the definition of a gentleman. You
JAMES CONRAD If that’s true then the definition of a gentleman must have changed in recent years. DRUNK REVELER Always quick with the wit, aren’t you James? That’s why everyone loves Jimmy Conrad. The drunkard gives Jimmy a bear hug. JAMES CONRAD (smiles) Go enjoy the fireworks. James subtly pushes him off leaving the drunkard to stumble mightily across the main room. EXT. – BACK LAWN, RUM RUNNERS SPEAKEASY – NIGHT James is standing on the edge of the river facing the club patrons who have gathered on the lawn, most standing but some sitting on blankets.
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese JAMES CONRAD Ready to celebrate America? There’s a dull roar throughout the crowd. JAMES CONRAD Come on, folks. Is everyone ready to celebrate America?!? The crowd responds this time with a loud, enthusiastic roar. JAMES CONRAD That’s more like it. James turns to Albert, whose orchestra is set up along the river, and gives him a sign to start playing music. JAMES CONRAD Now without further ado, enjoy the show. James points up to the sky where the first firework goes off. Soon the sky is lit up everywhere with fireworks as the orchestra plays jazz music. The crowd looks on in awe as many applaud in appreciation. EXT. – BISCAYNE BAY, AT THE MOUTH OF MIAMI RIVER – NIGHT Edward’s boat is floating in the middle of the Bay while the huge fireworks display explodes in the air behind them. As he begins to lift the bag with Dorothy’s body in it, he notices that William is standing back doing nothing. EDWARD William, you want to give me a hand? William points to Ralph who is looking out across the water and guarding the boat with a machine gun. WILLIAM CARR Why can’t he do it? EDWARD Because he’s our lookout. I’m not planning to be caught in the middle (MORE)
“Rum Runners” Original Screenplay by Jason Wiese EDWARD (cont’d) of disposing a body into the fucking bay. WILLIAM CARR (reluctantly) OK, fine. William walks over and lifts up the other side of the bag. The two men dump the body overboard and into the bay below as the fireworks show reaches its crescendo behind them. William watches the bag as it slowly sinks down into the murky water below and disappears. WILLIAM CARR So long my love. FADE OUT