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Writing Excalibur: The Movie [PG-VL]


Manic Webb
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Note: This is based on the Marvel Comics X-Men splinter group named Excalibur, not the mythical sword of King Arthur.

As a fan of the X-Men films, I've often wondered what a movie based on the Britain-based mutant team, Excalibur, would be like. This is a fan-script I'm in the process of writing. It is based on the previous two X-Men films released by 20th Century FOX. Basically, it's a spin-off. The story picks up where [i]X2: X-Men United[/i] left off, and ignores any & all [i]X-Men 3[/i] plot rumors currently floating around the internet.

With that said, let the fanscript begin...



[font=Courier New][center][b]EXCALIBUR[/b]
by Kevin Webb[/center]


FADE IN:

EXT. XAVIER?S SCHOOL - SUNSET

The school is completely abandoned. The garden and fields grow unchecked, and the front gate is chained up.

WOMAN?S VOICE (V.O.)
Mutation. It is the key to our
evolution. It has enabled us
to evolve from a single-celled
organism into the dominant
species of the planet. This
process is slow and normally
takes thousands and thousands
of years. But every few hundred
millennia, evolution leaps forward.

Standing alone in the COURTYARD is a girl in her late teens. She is revealed to be...

SHADOWCAT (V.O.)
This was Charles Xavier?s
School for the Gifted, a safe
haven for young mutants to
learn to control their
abilities without the risk of
harming ordinary people. My
name is Katherine Pryde, and I
used to be a student here.
Those days are over.

It begins to rain. Shadowcat turns toward the main gate, and walks through it as if it wasn?t there. She looks down both sides of the empty road, then begins to walk along the edge of the street.

A car eventually slows down and drives alongside her. The DRIVER roles down the passenger-side window.

DRIVER
Hey. You need a ride?

She looks a him, ponders a moment, and walks closer to the car. She talks to the driver while inspecting the car.

SHADOWCAT
It?s just a couple of miles.

DRIVER
Well you?d better get in. It?s
not safe for a girl like
yourself to be this far out at
night. The rain don?t help
none.

SHADOWCAT gets in the car. They drive off.

SHADOWCAT
Thank you. And I?m sorry if I
get your seats wet.

DRIVER
Don?t worry about it. What?s a
girl like you doing in the
middle of the woods, anyway?

SHADOWCAT
I was visiting someone. My cab
sort of drove off without me.

DRIVER
Who were you visiting?

She doesn?t answer, and looks straight forward.

DRIVER
(continuing)
A kid like you... I?m guessing
you used to go to that mutant
school, right? Xavier?s?

She looks at the driver.

DRIVER
(continuing)
You don?t got to be scared of
me. I got nothing against
mutants. I got a nephew back
home who?s a mutant... turns
his hair a different color, is
all. For every one of you that
can blow up a building,
there?s another with really
big ears. You don?t deserve
the bad rap.

SHADOWCAT
Thank you.

EXT./INT. MOTEL - NIGHT

It is no longer raining. SHADOWCAT, holding a bucket of ice and two canned soft drinks, walks toward her room.

UNKNOWN POV

SOMEONE watches her reach into her pocket for her key, unlock the door, and walk into her room.

BACK TO SCENE

SHADOWCAT places the bucket of ice and drinks on a dresser, sits on the bed, and turns on the TELEVISION. The NEWS is on.

TV JOURNALIST
In recent news, the private
prep school, Charles Xavier?s
School for the Gifted, has
been closed down for its
staff?s alleged involvement in
a recent mutant terrorist
attack against not only the
white house, but possibly the
general American population.
As many viewers may remember,
several weeks ago, countless
people across the world
instantly fell ill with
unexplained migraines, which
placed thousands of people in
intensive care in the United
States alone.

UNKNOWN POV

SOMEONE approaches the window to SHADOWCAT?S motel room, and silently watches her.

TV JOURNALIST
(continuing)
As a result, Congress is in
the midst of writing several
new bills to create more
restrictive laws toward the
use of mutant powers by mutant
members of the general public.

SHADOWCAT hears a BRUSHING outside her window, and gets up to check.

BACK TO SCENE

Shadowcat looks through the window. No one is there.

TV JOURNALIST
(continuing)
The president has been quoted
as saying, ?This is not about
war between mutants and humans.
This is about the safety of
all Americans.?

There is a loud BAMF. Shadowcat turns around to see NIGHTCRAWLER standing in the corner of her room.

SHADOWCAT
Kurt! Nightcrawler, you?re
alive.

NIGHTCRAWLER
I?m surprised to say the same,
Katzchen.

They hug.

SHADOWCAT
Where were you? Do you know
where the X-Men are? Can you
take me?

NIGHTCRAWLER
Calm down, Kitty. I lost the
staff when I was evacuating
the students. I don?t know if
the Professor and the others
were captured... or if they?re
still alive. Why did they raid
your mansion again?

SHADOWCAT
I don?t know. Didn?t you guys
go to Washington to convince
the president to take an
alternative? I got all of
Stryker?s documents and
everything.

NIGHTCRAWLER
Ja. And Stryker?s operation
was ended.

Shadowcat and Nightcrawler turn to the television after briefly hearing Xavier?s name.

TV JOURNALIST
When we return, we?ll cover
the recent disappearance of
Charles Xavier, and his mutant
paramilitary terrorist group
known as the X-Men.

SHADOWCAT
?Paramilitary??

NIGHTCRAWLER
?Terrorist??

SHADOWCAT
Kurt, they?re talking about
anti-mutant laws. It?s not
safe. And if we can?t find
the X-Men?-

NIGHTCRAWLER
Kitty, my devices no longer
work.

SHADOWCAT
What?

NIGHTCRAWLER
The communicator they gave me-
it no longer works.

SHADOWCAT
Is it broken? Because if it
is, I--

NIGHTCRAWLER
It?s not broken. They?re just
not answering. Where ever the
X-Men are, they do not want to
be found. You were right,
Katzchen. It?s not safe. You
have to run. Find some place
to live. Can you stay with
your family?

SHADOWCAT
The school had my name and
powers on file. They say us
students can go free, but I?m
not getting my family involved
in this. What about you?

NIGHTCRAWLER
I have no family. I can still
manage.

SHADOWCAT.
No. You have to come with me.

NIGHTCRAWLER
Where?

SHADOWCAT
The United Kingdom. England or
Scotland, I don?t know.
Professor Xavier said he had
friends there?- sanctuaries
like the school. The only
problem is getting you on a
transatlantic plane.

NIGHTCRAWLER
Do not worry about me, Kitty.
I was born in Europe,
remember? I have ways of
sneaking around.[/font]
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[font=Courier New]INT. TRASK WEAPONS FACILITY, 20 YEARS LATER - NIGHT

SUPER - TRASK Weapons Facility. 20 years from now.

A much older KATE PRYDE secretly leads a team of FIVE OTHER MUTANTS into the facility. As a GUARD walks by, Kate grabs her companions, drags them through a wall, and into the next room. This room is DARK, small, and empty.

Among the team are KELLER, a dark-haired man; BOHUSK, a teenaged boy with feathered arms and a steel baseball bat in hand; NORIKO, a woman with large, metal gauntlets on her arms; RAMSEY, a blonde man roughly Kate?s age; and RACHEL, a red-headed young woman.

KATE PRYDE
Ramsey, you and Keller go
search for Ahab?s office, but
don?t engage in battle if you
see him. He?s no doubt
guarded. Rachel, you?re with
me. Noriko and Bohusk, watch
our backs and make sure we get
through. Check?

They all nod in agreement.

KATE PRYDE
Good. Let?s move out.

Kate grabs her companions, and they walk back through the wall. RAMSEY and KELLER run in one direction, while the others proceed forward.

While running, BOHUSK trips a laser sensor on the floor and sets off an ALARM.

BOHUSK
Oops.

NORIKO
Great job, Bohusk.

BOHUSK
I?m sorry.

KATE PRYDE
This isn?t the time. Just get
ready to cover our asses.
Rachel, let?s go.

A small group of ARMED GUARDS approach them from behind. Bohusk and Noriko begin to fight them, with Noriko releasing electrical bolts from her arms. KATE and RACHEL leave them behind and continue.

RACHEL eventually stops in her tracks.

KATE PRYDE
Rachel?

RACHEL
They?re here. I can sense
them.

KATE PRYDE
We?re almost there. We can do
this. We just have to move
quickly. Now.

Kate Pryde grabs Rachel, and pulls her through a door marked ?CONTROL CENTER.? Kate begins to type commands on a control panel.

RACHEL
Can?t you just phase through
it?

KATE PRYDE
If I just wanted the systems
to malfunction and reboot,
yes. But I tried that once.
This is a bit more permanent.

CLOSE ON MONITOR

The blueprints of a SENTINEL appear on the screen.

BACK TO SCENE

Another ALARM sounds. Rachel looks at the monitors.

RACHEL
What did you do?

KATE PRYDE
Vented and shut off the
coolant system in the factory.
This place is gonna blow.

RACHEL turns around in fear, and looks at the door.

RACHEL
We have to go. They?ve found
us.

KATE PRYDE grabs Rachel by the arm, and pulls her through a wall. They run down the corridors of the facility, with an unseen foe in pursuit. The walls behind them begin to explode. Rachel and Kate stop next to a room that says ?ACCESS RESTRICTED.?

CLOSE ON DOOR

BACK TO SCENE

KATE PRYDE
Go. I?ll take care of them.

RACHEL
But Kate...

KATE PRYDE
Just go!

Kate pushes Rachel through the door.

CLOSE UP on Kate Pryde, ready to fight. A bright light engulfs her.

CUT TO:

CLOSE UP on Rachel in the next room. She stares at the room in awe.[/font]
[font=courier new]
EXT. STREETS OF LONDON, PRESENT - DAY

A tremor moves through the streets, eventually causing a fissure in the ground.

PAN TO:

AVALANCHE stomps his foot on the ground, causing a fissure to open beneath the wheels of a police car.

MAN?S VOICE
Stop right there!

Avalanche turns around to reveal...

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
(continuing)
Not in my London.

Captain Britain runs toward Avalanche, who is holding his ground. Avalanche creates a concentrated quake, which causes Captain Britain to lose balance and fall. Captain Britain leaps toward Avalanche from a long distance, and tackles him to the ground.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Are you finished yet?

AVALANCHE
Let me go.
CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Sorry, don?t see that
happening.

Captain Britain stands up, lifts Avalanche to his feet, and tosses him to a nearby POLICE OFFICER.

POLICE OFFICER
Thank you, Captain Britain.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Just doing what I can.

Captain Britain takes to the sky and flies away.

PULL BACK TO REVEAL:

INT. BRADDOCK MANOR, SITTING ROOM - SAME DAY

A television set receives brief static. MEGGAN, a blonde woman, sits on a sofa and watches. Only the back of Meggan?s head can be seen.

BRITISH TV JOURNALIST
Once again, the disaster was
averted by the mutant
vigilante Captain Britain,
whom many are beginning to
call the Champion of the UK.

MEGGAN
Brian, come see what they?re
saying about you on the telly.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
(from the next room)
I can hear it from here. I
really don?t like how the
media glorifies everything.

MEGGAN
You?re too modest. You?re a
hero, you know. You should
enjoy it.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
I?m not a hero. I?m a prat who
dresses up in a Union Jack
?cause he?s too afraid to show
his real face.

MEGGAN
I think you?re preaching to
the choir, Brian.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Right. Sorry.

A loud BELL RINGS.

MEGGAN
Someone at the gate?

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
I wonder who that is...

EXT./INT. BRADDOCK MANOR

Shadowcat and Nightcrawler are standing outside of the gate of Braddock Manor. Each is carrying a bag of clothing. Nightcrawler is wearing heavy make-up to make his face appear a normal color, a long coat, and a hat. His back is turned to the gate, while Shadowcat faces forward.

SHADOWCAT
So the professor told you
about this Braddock guy?

NIGHTCRAWLER
Ja. When I told the professor
I was thinking of returning to
Germany, he told me of a
former student of his named
Brian Braddock. His home is
one of few safe-havens for
mutants in Europe. Some of the
students at the school were
referred by this man.

SHADOWCAT
Well if he can?t help us, I
just hope he knows where to
find the professor?s other
friend in Scotland.

NIGHTCRAWLER
Are you okay, Kitty? You seem
distracted or ill.

SHADOWCAT
What? Oh, I?m fine. Probably
just jet-lag.

Shadowcat presses a button next to the gate. Captain Britain?s voice speaks through the intercom.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN (V.O.)
Braddock Manor. Can I help
you?

SHADOWCAT
Is this Brian Braddock?

Shadowcat presses another button on the gate?s intercom. Intercut with...

INT. BRADDOCK MANOR, DOORWAY

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Yes. May I ask who this is?

SHADOWCAT
I?m a student from Charles
Xavier?s School for the Gifted
in New York.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
I see...

SHADOWCAT
Professor Xavier told us that
you were interested in meeting
fellow alumni from the school.
My friend and I are visiting
England, and we were wondering
if you had any suggestions for
tourist spots... hotels to
take sanctuary at...

The gates to the manor open, and Nightcrawler and Shadowcat begin to walk toward the door.

NIGHTCRAWLER
(whispering)
Nice use of the word
sanctuary.

SHADOWCAT
(whispering)
Thank you. I hope he caught
it.

Captain Britain, dressed in normal clothes, is waiting for them with the door open. He stops them.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
How do I know you really went
to Xavier?s school?

Shadowcat reaches into her bag and pulls out a school ID badge. She hands it to Captain Britain.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Mutants?

Nightcrawler takes off his hat, to reveal his pointy ears.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Come in.

Shadowcat and Nightcrawler enter. Captain Britain closes the door behind them.

SHADOWCAT
Thank you. We heard you could
help us.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Anything for a kid in need.

SHADOWCAT
I?m not a kid, Mr. Braddock.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Then anything for a lady.

NIGHTCRAWLER
I want to thank you, as well,
Herr Braddock. My name is Kurt
Wagner, but when I was a star
in the Munich?-

SHADOWCAT
-?His name is Nightcrawler.
I?m Kitty Pryde.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
It?s a pleasure, Ms. Pryde,
Mr. Wagner.

NIGHTCRAWLER
Kurt.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Kurt. By the way, you can take
off your make-up. I can see it
peeling off. Blue skin, is it?


NIGHTCRAWLER
Ja.

Nightcrawler takes a towel from his bag and begins to wipe his face.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
I heard about the mansion.

NIGHTCRAWLER
Have you heard from the
professor?

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Sorry, no. I was hoping you
could tell me.

SHADOWCAT
Sorry. All we know is that the
mansion was raided, which
seems to be a trend lately,
and the X-Men are missing.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Did you really attack your
president?

NIGHTCRAWLER
No! Well, I did once, but I
was under the control of a
madman.

SHADOWCAT
The X-Men broke into the White
House to give the president
documents about the illegal
activities of a man named
William Stryker. I know,
because I got the documents
myself.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Did you have to break in?

NIGHTCRAWLER
It was urgent.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
And now you?re exiled from
your own country.

NIGHTCRAWLER
Are you going to help us or
not? Because we can leave.

SHADOWCAT
We know the professor has a
friend in Scotland. Maybe you
could just point us--

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
?-No. I?m sorry. You?re guests
in my home. Times are tough
for mutants everywhere. I
don?t know why I thought you?d
have it any easier. Stay.
Please.

NIGHTCRAWLER
I?m sorry for losing my temper
as well.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
I can take you to Muir Island
tomorrow. Right now, I want
you to just rest a spell.

SHADOWCAT
Rest would be good.

NIGHTCRAWLER
She hasn?t been feeling well.

SHADOWCAT
It?s nothing.

They begin to walk through the main corridor of the manor, approaching the SITTING ROOM.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Well, I have a few empty rooms
upstairs. First I want to give
you the two quid tour, in case
you need anything. It?s also a
good idea if you meet my
current houseguest.

NIGHTCRAWLER
I won?t frighten her, will I?

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Doubtful.

They walk into the sitting room, where Meggan is watching television intently.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Megs, meet our new visitors.

Meggan turns around, revealing her to be a beast-like woman with greenish skin, fin-like ears, sharp teeth, and bushy eyebrows.

MEGGAN
Hello. It?s always good to
meet friends of Brian?s. I?m
Meggan.

Nightcrawler stares at her, in awe of her appearance.

NIGHTCRAWLER
Hello. I? I?m Kurt.

SHADOWCAT
Hi, I?m Kitty.

MEGGAN
Pleasure to meet you both.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Kitty and Kurt will staying
for the night. I?m taking them
to Muir Island in the morning.

MEGGAN
Ooh, you?ll like Moira.

NIGHTCRAWLER
I?m beginning to like it here.

CAPTAIN BRITAIN
Right. On with the tour, then?

[font=Verdana][size=1][color=Red]Manic, you know better than to double post. Just edit the post with the appropriate information. ^.^ -- Asphy[/color][/size][/font]
[/font]
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[SIZE=1]Interesting, most interesting.

A most interesting piece of work you have here Manic, as a fairly informal fan of the X-Men series I'm not familiar with Excalibur and as such I probably won't catch the fan-based subtlety of some of this. Perhaps you might kind a kind of character list with descriptions for those of us who mightn't be familiar with some characters. Overall it's very enjoyable though I'll agree with Retri when he says a bit more information is needed as to the whole affair.[/SIZE]
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I'm actually an avid user of Slow-As-Hell Exposition?. Everything's a little scattered at the moment, but it should (hopefully) all fit together in the final act. Also, a good portion of this script won't make sense if you never saw [i]X2: X-Men United[/i], which is why I noted this as a continuation/spin-off at the beginning.

A part of me doesn't want to write up biographies for the characters, as it would kinda give away one of the upcoming key plot points of my script. However, avid X-Men fans already know who these people are, so what's the harm?


[center][b]EXCALIBUR CHARACTERS[/b]
In order of appearance in my script[/center]

[b]SHADOWCAT[/b]
Real name: Katherine "Kitty" Pryde
Born and raised in Chicago, Kitty is a teenaged genius-level computer technician and hacker. She also has the power to pass through solid matter (ie. walking through walls). She was a student at Professor X's school.

Kitty was briefly seen walking through a wall in the first [i]X-Men[/i] movie, and made another brief appearance in [i]X2: X-Men United[/i]. In [i]X2[/i], Kitty was seen running through several walls to escape Colonel William Stryker's raid in Professor X's mansion. At the very end of the movie, Professor X told the president that he attained documents of William Stryker's illegal activites with the help of a girl who can walk through walls-- implying Kitty Pryde.

[b]DRIVER[/b]
Some guy who gave Kitty a ride on a rainy evening.

[b]TV JOURNALIST[/b]
Exactly what it sounds like.

[b]NIGHTCRAWLER[/b]
Real name: Kurt Wagner
A blue mutant with a prehensile tail and the ability to teleport himself (and anyone he's holding) anywhere within a range of a few miles. After his birth, his mother dumped him in a river. He survived, as was raised by a group of gypsies in a German Circus/Carnival. Despite his gypsy upbringing, Kurt is a devout Catholic. While being raised in the circus, Kurt used his natural athletic ability to become a star acrobat.

[i]X2: X-Men United[/i] introduced Kurt as a mutant who attacked the president while under mind-control. He soon joined the X-Men, and helped them sneak into the president's Oval Office to show him documents regarding the illegal actions of an anti-mutant paramilitary group led by a Colonel William Stryker.

[b]KATE PRYDE[/b]
Kitty Pryde, 20 years in the future.

[b]KELLER, NORIKO, BOHUSK, AND RAMSEY[/b]
A group of mutants led by Kate Pryde in the future. Honestly, the characters have very minor roles in the comics, and I picked them almost randomly for the scene they were featured in, above. You honestly don't have to know who they are. Just remember them for later on in the story. Oops! Was that a spoiler?

[b]RACHEL[/b]
Rachel Summers, the future daughter of Cyclops and Jean Grey. In the comic books, she accidentally tapped into the Phoenix Force, and the Phoenix powers hurled her back in time to when the Dark Phoenix Saga ended. She was somewhat raised by Kate Pryde in a post-apocalyptic future where all mutants are held in concentration camps throughout their whole lives.

In my script, I won't explicitly be using the Phoenix Force, but it's the same idea. She'll be coming back in time.

[b]AVALANCHE[/b]
Real name: Dominic Petros
A mutant with the power to cause vibrations in inorganic matter. In other words, he causes earthquakes. I'm more-or-less using him as cannon fodder to introduce...

[b]CAPTAIN BRITAIN[/b]
Real name: Brian Braddock
An English superhero with super-strength and the power to fly. Twin brother of the X-Men's Psylocke. He's not so much an outcast, as he is the UK's #1 superhero in the Marvel Universe. In the comics, his powers are mystical, not a mutation. For the sake of my script, let's just say he's a mutant.

[b]MEGGAN[/b]
An empathic metamorph. Meggan has the ability to slightly alter her appearance based upon what other people think of her, and her natural surroundings. She can also tap into the energies of the Earth to slightly increase her natural strength, endurance, and to give her flight. Some people theorize she might be a combination of a mutant and a fairy. Until her adulthood, Meggan had no control of her morphing ability.

[B]EXCALIBUR AS A WHOLE[/b]
In the comics, Excalibur formed when Nightcrawler and Shadowcat were in Europe to get help when Shadowcat's powers went out of control. Before they could return to New York to rejoin the X-Men, there was a television broadcast of the X-Men all sacrificing their lives to close a portal to another dimension. While the X-Men were secretly hiding out in Australia (having faked their own deaths), Nightcrawler and Shadowcat teamed up with Captain Britain and Meggan to rescue Rachel Summers, who was being chased by interdimensional beings called warwolves. The five of them joined together to form the new super-team, Excalibur.
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