Well We’re Movin’ On Up

OneWorldTradeCenter

ANNOUNCER: (V.O.) We will now rebroadcast yesterday’s blog, which had been temporarily interrupted by the terror attacks in Paris, in its entirely.

INT. A CRAMPED CIGAR LOUNGE— NIGHT

In a small basement room filled by a low-to-the-ground black leather sectional sofa (square shape), several men sit smoking cigars and drinking scotch. The air hangs heavy with gray smoke. In front of the men on the table are stacks of old-school bank ledgers. Seated in this “lions den” are Jon Voight, Clint Eastwood, Chuck Norris, Kelsie Grammar, Dennis Miller, Mel Gibson, and Charlton Heston who is actually, of course, dead but non of the other men seem to notice. His cigar has gone out in the ashtray, the ice in his scotch is melted.  The large mahogany door creaks open and Jeff sticks his head in. 

KELSIE GRAMMER: Ah! Here’s the man of the hour! Come in, Jeff!

The men make welcoming grumbling noises as Jeff takes his seat. A young woman in a skimpy retro flight attendant uniform snips the end of a cigar and sticks it between Jeff’s teeth. Another busty young woman, similarly clad, puts a rocks glass full of ice in his hand and begins to fill it from a Waterford decanter of scotch. 

CLINT EASTWOOD: We’re all having scotch. I trust you like scotch.

JEFF: Well actually I don’t—

JON VOIGHT: Of course he does! What real man doesn’t like scotch?

JEFF: Actually I don’t drink at all.

The men explode in uproarious laughter as if Jeff has just delivered the punch line to the funniest joke in history. 

CHUCK NORRIS: Good one, Jeff! I agree. Never trust a man who doesn’t a drink from time to time, right Heston?

Chuck Norris elbows the corps of Charlton Heston knocking it over a bit. Even the “gentle” blow from Norris dislodges Heston’s upper plate which now hangs precariously on a bungee of Polygrip visible in the cavern of Heston’s open mouth. Again, no one notices— no one but Jeff that is, who stares briefly at Heston with a look of horror. 

JEFF: (“snapping out of it”) Well, be that as it may—

Jeff places the glass of scotch on a silver tray next to the antipasti. Mel Gibson looks at him with disdain. 

JEFF: What’s this one about today?

DENNIS MILLER: Money.

Jeff looks around the room through the foggy haze.

JEFF: Well, don’t you think this is kind of sexist….and racist?

KELSEY GRAMMER: Whatever do you mean?

JEFF: Well, we’re going to talk about money and there’s nothing here but a bunch of white guys?

DENNIS MILLER: Like it or not— and I know this will fly in the face of your ultra-leftist feminazi views—

JEFF: I’m not a—

Voight puts a hand on Jeff’s arm and shakes his head no to silence Jeff.

DENNIS MILLER: — the greatest economies of the world throughout history have been built by white men. You have to let go of being ashamed of being a white man!

General grumblings of agreement all around.

JEFF: But I’m not asha—

Again, Voight puts his hand on Jeff’s arm, shakes his head, and shushes Jeff into silence. 

CLINT EASTWOOD: (to Jeff) How you doin’ financially?

JEFF: I’m broke.

CLINT EASTWOOD: (to the room) Anybody here broke?

General “no’s” all around. “Far from it.” “Not me!” 

CHUCK NORRIS: So if you have failed so miserably where we’ve all succeeded, don’t you think it wise to just shut up and learn what we have to teach you?

JEFF: (unsure and confused) I—well, I don’t—-

KELSEY GRAMMER: You’re exactly right, you don’t know. But we do. So my suggestion would be that you button up and listen to how we’ve managed to succeed financially. The bottom line is the bottom line.

JEFF: (trying to make the idea work for him) Couldn’t we at least have one woman?

The general grumblings of disapproval are interrupted as the large mahogany door swings open.

JUDI DENCH: (bursting into the room and filling it with her presence) Sorry I’m late, did I miss anything?

Moans from the men as their “all boys club” has just been ruined. Jeff stands out of respect for Dame Judi. 

Judi Dench fans the air in front of her face to try and clear away some of the cigar smoke.

JUDI DENCH: I’m sorry, is something on fire? (to Jeff) So what’s the blog about today?

JEFF: We were going to talk about money.

Judi Dench looks around the room once again to take in the whole scene.

JUDI DENCH: (to Jeff) And does this work for you?

JEFF: (apologetically) Not really, no.

JUDI DENCH: Take my hand!

Kelsey Grammer raises a finger in protest on behalf of the group but they are all frozen instantly as if they were 1970s Disney animatronics with the power source shut off. The loud sound of hydraulics is heard and the entire set, save the square of floor on with Jeff and Judi Dench stand, is lowered into the basement carrying the frozen men with them. When it has completely disappeared, Jeff and Judi step off of the rectangle of antique parquet floor on the white gloss floor which is the top side of the former ceiling. The rectangle inverts quickly and the flip side brings this section into uniformity with the rest of the floor.

The floors and ceiling of this room are also white and there is a single “button” of projected light (about the size of a saucer) on the wall. The “button” reads, “UP.” Judi Dench walks over to it, holds her hand over it and the entire room, now revealed as an elevator, begins its ascent. When they’ve traveled up one floor, the white exo-walls are left behind and we can now see that three of the elevator walls are made of glass, the fourth remains high-gloss white. The view is breathtaking as they ascend quickly over lower Manhattan. Jeff crosses to the window to stare at the city he loves. 

Presently, they arrive at the 103rd floor. The door of the elevator disappears into the ceiling and they enter a large beautiful conference room that fills the entire floor.

The walls of the room are floor to ceiling windows. The view is as from an aircraft. In the middle of the room is an enormous conference table, glass top, glass base. Seated at the table are Whoopi Goldberg, Anne Hathaway, Russel Crowe, Catherine Zeta Jones, Helen Mirren, Ben Affleck, Johnny Depp, Julian Moore, Tom Hanks, Matt Damon, Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt, Helena Bonham Carter, and Meryl Streep. 

Judi Dench escorts Jeff to the head of the table. 

JUDI DENCH: Better?

Jeff looks around the table. What a gathering! But still something doesn’t quite sit right with him.

JUDI DENCH: What’s the matter?

JEFF: Um— well, we’re still sort of— monochromatic don’t you think?

WHOOPI GOLDBERG: What am I, a gefilte fish?

JEFF:  (looking at Dench) I mean other than Whoopi.

As if by magic, the two are standing beside the table and not at the head of it. Judi Dench takes Jeff by the shoulders and turns him toward the other end of the table where Jamie Foxx, Morgan Freeman, Oprah Winfrey, John Leguizamo, Penelope Cruz, Lucy Liu, Samuel L. Jackson, Angela Bassett and George Takei are seated. 

Jeff looks back to Judi Dench.

JUDI DENCH: How about now?

JEFF: I’m not much for segregation.

JUDI DENCH: Look again.

Again, as if by magic, they are the head of the table and the last group of actors who had formerly been seated at one end of the table are dispersed throughout the group. 

JUDI DENCH: See the world as you wish it to be, Jeffrey, and demand that it become that for you.

Judi Dench doesn’t really mind and in fact sort of appreciates Jeff’s desire for his support team to be diverse. Jeff turns once again to the group, pleased with the group he’s summonsed. 

JUDI DENCH: By the way, Johnny Depp is Native American.

JOHNNY DEPP: (toasting with his espresso cup) It’s true.

JUDI DENCH: If there’s anyone else you think might be helpful, you know what to do.

JEFF: I do.

A door with no knob on the outside, previously invisible, appears in the large white wall when it is cracked open by someone inside. Jeff catches it in the corner of his eye. When he looks directly at it, the door closes.

JUDI DENCH: So what we’d like to do today, and actually as far as the group goes this will probably be all we have time for, is that we’d like to have Jeff read the goals over aloud to make sure we’re all on the same page. Some of you are joining us anew and for the rest of you, I believe there may have been some revisions since that last time you heard them. Jeff?

Jeff fumbles in his inside jacket pocket and then pats his back pockets.

JEFF: I don’t know if I have a copy—

JUDI DENCH: (as if speaking to the ceiling) EDNA, could we please have the goals document please?

EDNA: (sexy computerized voice) Of course, Dame Judi, here you are.

On the glass top table in front of Jeff, a rectangular screen appears, projected from some unknown source. Shot of the tabletop screen shows the list of Jeff’s goals. 

Angela Jolie stands, marches around to stand by Jeff, swipes the tabletop screen and the goals document disappears. 

ANGELINA JOLIE: If you don’t know them by heart, they’re shitty goals.

She turns and start to return to her seat, stops, turns, sniffs Jeff’s jacket.

ANGELINA JOLIE: (a look of slight nausea) Have you been around my father?!

Angelina Jolie returns to her seat. 

Judi Dench gestures for Jeff to begin. 

JEFF: Do I know them? I know them.  (addressing the group)  I own a resid—

JUDI DENCH: (remembering) Oh! Hold on. Sorry. (to the group) I’ve asked Jeff to state his goals in the affirmative, as if they had already been achieved. This is to help get hin in the mindset of what having these goals achieved will feel like. Okay, sorry, go ahead.

JEFF: I own a residence, which I love, in New York City. I write for four hours every day. I lift or do CrossFit six days a week. I’ve written twenty-five movies, twenty-five plays, and ten TV shows. I make at least one hundred and ten thousand dollars a month every month for the rest of my life. I live off ten percent of my income.

Again, the hidden door opens. Two glowing sinister eyes, in the shape of half-moons grin evilly from the darkness. When Jeff looks directly at the door, it closes. 

JEFF: (continuing, disturbed by the door) I head a wildly successful production company. I am the man of my dreams and I’m married to the husband of my dreams. I head a non-profit, The Mehadi Foundation, which helps Iraq and Afghanistan veterans by providing peer support, teaching creativity as a healing practice, and providing paid internships and jobs inside the entertainment industry to this population of vets.

Jeff seems a bit quaky having seen the eyes a second time and trepidatious of the reaction the goals might get from the group.

JUDI DENCH: Anyone here who believes these goals are unattainable for Jeff?

Jeff looks, chin down, around the table. The looks seem to all say some version of “of course they’re possible.” 

JUDI DENCH: Very good. Alright, EDNA will give you all your assignments. (to Morgan Freeman) Morgan, you’ll meet with Jeff first thing in the morning, is that good?

MORGAN FREEMAN: (smiling) It would be my pleasure.

JUDI DENCH: Splendid. Okay everyone, I guess that’s a wrap for today. Have a good evening and don’t forget to see EDNA on your way out. So, ah, as Jeff is wont to say, (with Southern accent) See y’all tomorrow.


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