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CON MAN - "FAN FICTION"

By JordynGiddens

Humor

Con Man - "Fan Fiction"

Act 1

FADE IN:

EXT. RUNDOWN OFFICE BUILDING - EARLY AFTERNOON

Shot of WRAY walking up to the building. A homeless man jumps out from behind a dumpster and hisses at Wray.

WRAY

(Startled)

Jesus!

The homeless man retreats and Wray enters the building holding his chest.

INT. RUNDOWN OFFICE BUILDING - EARLY AFTERNOON

Wray approaches what looks like a receptionist’s desk. A HAGGARD WOMAN is seated and playing with the phone cord.

WRAY

Hi, there.

(Wray waits a beat until the woman’s glazed eyes focus on him.)

Hello. Yes, I’m Wray Nerely. I’m here to see Bobbie.

The woman stares at him, uncomprehendingly. Wray is obviously uncomfortable with the situation. He pulls out his phone and checks his text messages.

WRAY

This is 1040 Beacon, isn’t it? Maybe I’m in the wrong place. There’s no one by the name of Bobbie here?

HAGGARD WOMAN

(Repeating absently)

Bobbie.

Wray puts his phone away and begins to back towards the door.

WRAY

You know what? My mistake. I must have the wrong building.

The woman’s expression suddenly clears.

HAGGARD WOMAN

(Shrieking)

Bobbie!!!

Wray stares at her in open-mouthed shock. BOBBIE enters from a side hallway.

BOBBIE

Oh, Wray. You’re early. Come with me.

She motions for him to follow her back down the hallway.

WRAY

This is...

(Glancing around nervously and swatting cobwebs out of his way)

...some office you’ve got.

BOBBIE

Oh, this isn’t my office.

WRAY

It isn’t?

BOBBIE

No, I don’t really have an office, per-se. I was just here to pick up something from my ...

(It’s clear she was going to say “dealer,” but she quickly rewords.)

...friend. It was just easier to have you meet me here.

WRAY

Speaking of which, what’s this all about?

BOBBIE

I think you’ll be pleased to know I got you an audition.

WRAY

Bobbie, you’re not even my...

(He stops himself.)

...wait, an audition? For what?

BOBBIE

Ha! I knew you couldn’t resist.

They exit out the rusted back door.

EXT. ROUGH-LOOKING ALLEY - A LITTLE LATER

Bobbie is walking towards the end of the alley and texting on her phone.

WRAY

So, let's hear more about this audition. Tell me, is it Wes Anderson? Please say it’s Wes Anderson.

BOBBIE

Can’t ever get any damn service in this alley.

WRAY

(Impatiently)

Bobbie! Focus! The audition?

A “Sons of Anarchy”-looking man pulls up on a motorcycle from out of nowhere.

BOBBIE

(Angrily)

Finally!

She climbs onto the back of the bike.

WRAY

Whoa, whoa. Hold up. What about the audition?

BOBBIE

(Over the sound of the motorcycle)

I texted you the information. Knock ’em dead, Nerely.

Wray watches Bobbie ride away on the back of the bike before scrambling to pull his phone out of his back pocket. As he reads the message, the text, “27 5TH ST. SAN DIMAS” appears in a chat bubble on screen.

WRAY

(Skeptically)

San Dimas. That seems-

The homeless man appears across the alley from Wray. He is staring creepily at Wray and licking his lips. Wray does a nervous double glance at him before cautiously putting his phone away and slowly backing out of the alley.

FADE OUT

End of Act 1

Act 2

FADE IN:

INT. BACKSEAT OF A HIRED CAR - AFTERNOON

Wray is video dialing on his cell phone. JACK answers, dressed in a scuba suit.

JACK

(O.S.)

Hey, buddy!

WRAY

Hey, buddy, great news! I’m on my way to an audition. It’s in San Dimas. Odd, I know, but...

(He squints and brings the phone closer to his eyes)

...are you on a boat?

EXT. SHARK DIVING TOUR BOAT - AFTERNOON

Jack is prepping to go shark diving. Crew members are helping him into the straps of his scuba tank.

JACK

Yeah, trying to cross one off the bucket list. Cage diving with Great Whites. Don’t you wish you were here?

Intercut between Wray and Jack

There is a sound of splashing water and a squawking bird. Wray makes a startled, disgusted face.

JACK

(O.S.)

Whoa! Look at that. That shark just devoured a seagull.

WRAY

That’s great. Look, I don’t want to take up your time, here, but do you have any advice for me?

JACK

For the audition? Don’t worry about it. You’ll do great. Have you given anymore thought to the “Spectrum” movie?

WRAY

About that...I just want to explore my other options right now.

JACK

Well, don’t take too long. I’m counting on you, man. What’s “Spectrum” without Cash?

A CREW MEMBER approaches Jack.

CREW MEMBER

We’ve got the all-clear, Mr. Moore. If you’re still planning on diving, you should go now.

JACK

Thanks. Be right there.

(To Wray)

I’ve got to go. Good luck, buddy.

Wray sits back in the seat and sighs.

EXT. SUBURBAN HOUSE - AFTERNOON

Wray exits the car and looks at the house in confusion. He leans on the car window to talk to the DRIVER.

WRAY

Are you sure this is the right address?

DRIVER

27 5th St. Here you are.

Wray steps away and the car squeals off. He turns and rubs a hand across his face. An attractive well-dressed SUBURBAN WOMAN opens the front door and calls to Wray.

SUBURBAN WOMAN

Mr. Nerely, welcome. The team is expecting you. Come on in.

Wray crosses the yard and enters the house.

INT. SUBURBAN HOUSE ENTRYWAY - A MOMENT LATER

Wray is looking around the house with a tentative expression.

WRAY

Is this where the auditions are being held?

The Suburban Woman makes a noise that is friendly but offers neither confirmation or denial.

SUBURBAN WOMAN

They’re just down the stairs there.

Wray looks at the basement stairs with hesitation.

WRAY

(Overly casually)

This wouldn’t be an audition for a snuff film, would it? See, I just don’t know if that would be my strongest genre.

The Suburban Woman laughs mechanically and exits to the kitchen, leaving Wray alone at the top of the stairs. He takes a deep breath and begins to descend them.

WRAY

(Talking to himself)

Please don’t let this be a human centipede situation. I swear, if I die, I’m going to haunt Bobbie so hard!

He reaches the bottom of the stairs and opens a door.

INT. SUBURBAN HOUSE BASEMENT - AFTERNOON

Wray enters a room that is covered in “Spectrum” merchandise. Posters line the walls, boxed action figures are proudly displayed on shelves, and the show is on the large television at the back of the room. Across from the TV, a group of nerdy young men are watching Wray in shocked admiration. One of the fans, GAGE, is dressed as Cash from “Spectrum.” He clambers to his feet and rushes to shake Wray’s hand.

GAGE

It’s an honor to meet you, Mr. Nerely. Would you like a soda? Maybe a water? I’d offer you something stronger, but my mom doesn’t let me drink in the house.

WRAY

(To himself)

I’m going to kill Bobbie.

GAGE

What’s that now?

WRAY

Oh, nothing. I was just saying I think there’s been a mistake. See, I thought this was supposed to be an audition for a movie.

Gage laughs and snorts, causing Wray to look repulsed and concerned.

GAGE

You don’t have to audition for us, Mr. Nerely. The camera’s all ready over here.

He grabs Wray by the arm and leads him to the middle of the room. One of the other guys hands Gage a stack of handwritten papers.

GAGE

And here’s your script.

WRAY

I’m still pretty sure there’s been a mistake. My booker, Bobbie, set this up and-

GAGE

Yes, she’s the one who negotiated your fee.

WRAY

(Mood brightening)

My fee?

GAGE

The five grand we paid for you to read our “Spectrum” scripts for an hour.

WRAY

Five grand?

Gage nods and shakes the stack of papers at Wray impatiently. He takes them reluctantly, and Gage returns to his spot on the couch.

GAGE

You can start with mine first. It’s titled...

(Proudly)

....“Foliage on the Breeze.”

Wray’s expression seems to say both “Why am I here, God?” and “This can’t be real.” He sighs in resignation, lifts the first script to read, and clears his throat.

FADE OUT

End of act 2

Act 3

FADE IN:

INT. SUBURBAN HOUSE BASEMENT - LATE AFTERNOON

Wray is halfheartedly reading the fan scripts as the guys watch in awe from the couch.

WRAY

Curse you, Minerva. Your lady parts have me all riled...

(Wray shuts his eyes and seems to encourage himself to continue)

...have me all riled up. Let me put this boat on auto pilot and let’s you and me do some navigating of our own.

Wray lowers the script and shuts his eyes as if he’s in pain. The guys on the couch erupt in applause.

WRAY

(Insincerely)

Thank you. Thank you. Well, looks like we’re all out of material. I’m going to head out now.

Wray moves towards the stairs, but Gage leaps to his feet.

GAGE

Lieutenant, wait! Can we ask one more favor?

WRAY

I wish you wouldn’t.

GAGE

Will you say it just once before you go? Please?

WRAY

(Under his breath)

Son of a bitch.

(Loudly, melodramatically)

I’ll see you in Hell!!

Gage and the others cheer loudly. Wray forces a smile and nods awkwardly before exiting.

EXT. SUBURBAN HOUSE - LATE AFTERNOON

Wray bursts from the house and whips his cell phone from his pocket. He dials and begins pacing the sidewalk. Bobbie’s voicemail can be heard over the line.

BOBBIE

(O.S.)

You’ve reached Bobbie. Sorry I missed your call. Leave a message and I’ll get back to you. Unless this is Jim. I already told you I’d have the rent next week. Don’t leave me anymore messages, jackass.

WRAY

Bobbie, it’s Wray. We need to talk about that “audition” you just sent me to. Call me back immediately.

Wray hangs up and begins trying to hail a cab. He is passed by several. His phone pings with a text message alert. He reads in. On-screen there is a text message bubble from Jack that reads, “BIG UPDATE ON THE SPECTRUM MOVIE. SWING BY MY PLACE WHEN YOU CAN. CAN’T WAIT TO HEAR HOW THE AUDITION WENT.”

WRAY

Just perfect.

A cab finally stops and Wray gets in.

INT. CAB - LATE AFTERNOON

CAB DRIVER

Where to?

WRAY

Haverford Avenue in the Palisades. I’ll tell you the house when we get there.

CAB DRIVER

You got it.

Wray sits back and covers his face with his hands in exhaustion. The Cab Driver keeps stealing glances at Wray in the rear view mirror. After a few beats, recognition dawns on his face.

CaB DRIVER

Hey, I know you! You’re that guy from the P.J. Hars show. You were the pilot, right?

WRAY

(Assuming a fake accent)

Uh, no. Is not accurate. I am not actor.

The driver studies him in the mirror.

CAB DRIVER

You didn’t have an accent before. No, you’re definitely that guy.

A car honks as it flies by.

WRAY

(Dropping the accent)

Alright, you got me. Maybe you could watch the road now?

The Cab Driver shrugs and turns his attention back to the road.

CAB DRIVER

You know, I never did care for your show much. Kind of made sense it was cancelled.

WRAY

(Sarcastically)

Always nice to meet a fan.

CAB DRIVER

That Jack Moore, though. What a never-ending faucet a talent, huh?

Wray lets his head fall back against the seat as the driver continues to talk. His expression says, “What’d I do to deserve this?”

FADE TO BLACK

End of show

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