THE DEATH COLLECTOR (first draft)
GUN BARREL LOGO
EXT. KARACHI EMPRESS MARKET – DAY
A ball made of plastic bags and elastic bands is being kicked by a young boy.
Superimpose: KARACHI, PAKISTAN: We’re in the bustling market square on Friday shortly after the prayers have finished. We pick up the frantic footsteps of SHAH. He turns back to check if he is being followed, sweat on his face.
BOB FRANKLIN (V.O.)
Keep moving. Keep moving. Come to papa.
Couldn’t the brains trust of the CIA have come up with an extraction route that didn’t involve our man wading through the entire population of Karachi?
INT. CIA VANTAGE POINT – OPERATIONS ROOM – DAY
FRANKLIN scowls. He is in an operations room surrounded by three agents monitoring screens whilst Franklin surveys the scene through bifocals.
Negative oh oh seven. The crowd is perfect cover for our man.
It’s a British life at stake here, let’s not pretend otherwise. It’s certainly not how I would have approached it.
Didn’t you hear Bond? Britannia doesn’t rule the waves anymore. Our drones do. So we call the shots. Besides, your man claims to have information on Magic 66. That gives us authority.
You might need those drones of yours. Suspected target. Three o’clock. Dark shirt. Dark glasses. Dark rucksack.
Franklin pulls his bifocals tight to his eyes and wheels round. Through Bi-Focal lenses we see a suspect matching Bond’s description marching purposeful through the crowds in the direction of Shah. The eyes are concealed behind designer shades and the face is expressionless.
All agents poised to intercept.
EXT. KARACHI EMPRESS MARKET – DAY
Suddenly we become aware of a cluster of thinly disguised CIA operatives amongst the bustling hoards. They are gathered in front of a white lorry which is parked in front of the Empress Market building. They motion towards the suspected target.
BOB FRANKLIN (V.O.)
Only on my signal, not before.
The suspect closes on Shah who continues to look over his shoulder at irregular intervals. The two are on a collision course. Shah suddenly turns and bumps straight into the target. The CIA operatives reach for their weapons. But the suspect only gives him a quizzical look and then moves on ahead.
Stand down. All agents stand down.
The agents relax and motions towards Shah.
The suspect has stopped and is removing his sunglasses. Now he is removing his backpack.
There are two more of them. Your men are cornered.
Through Franklin’s bifocals we see two more bombers perform a similar ritual with their sunglasses and rucksacks, forming a perimeter around Shah and CIA agents. They are closed in with the white lorry blocking any possible exit. The agents look helpless.
Everyone hold your position. We wait it out. Wait it out.
We wait we lose him. I can’t do that.
I’ve got skin in the game too. But this operation is to be conducted with extreme discretion. You will stand down. Bond?! Bond?!
The three bombers move in on Shah and the agents with slow precision. Shah, fully aware of what is happen looks terrified. One of the CIA agents motions for his gun but…
The original suspect, BOMBER #1 clocks this and swiftly unveils his explosives. The crowd panics and begins to scatter leaving the CIA team and Shah. The bomber goes for the cord and motions to shout. Suddenly the WHITE LORRY bursts into life and rams Bomber #1 and runs him over. An explosion goes off with shrapnel and large amounts of paper from the lorry fly everywhere.
BOMBER’S #2 & #3 arise from the blast to see Shah making a run for it. They immediately chase in pursuit. The team of CIA agents are incapacitated by the blast.
From the wreckage of the Lorry emerges BOND, kicking through the remains of the windscreen and hauling his way out. He breaks into a sprint to join the pursuit. Shah follows a stampede of people running from the explosion all the while checking the whereabouts of the two bombers. Bomber #2 follows his exact path but is blocked by the hordes of fleeing civilians. Bomber #3 breaks off from the chase and heads into a commercial building. Bond recognises the split pursuit and makes the decision to follow Bomber #3 into the commercial building up a flight of stairs that opens onto an open balcony with a view of the panicked crowds.
EXT. FIRST FLOOR BALCONIES – DAY
Bomber #3 bustles past several people almost knocking an elderly woman off her feet. He has a clear view out over the crowds and we see Shah being followed by Bomber #2. Bomber #3 becomes aware of screams from behind him. Bond has drawn his pistol but can’t get a clear shot as Bomber #3 continues to run along the open balconies parallel to the other chase.
EXT. KARACHI EMPRESS MARKET – DAY
We are now back with Shah and Bomber #2 who has closed distance as he has the advantage that people tend to get out of the way of someone with a suicide bomb strapped to their chest. Shah, sensing this, heads in the direction of a nearby mosque and enters.
INT. MOSQUE – DAY
He finds some open space and glances behind as Bomber #2 has difficulty with the crowd trying to stop his entrance to the place of worship. This has bought Shah breathing space and Bomber #2 decides to change approach and enters a side room.
EXT. FIRST FLOOR BALCONIES – DAY
Back with Bond who manages to get two shots off with his pistol but both are wide of the mark. Bond is closing fast so Bomber #3 takes cover behind a wall turns and lifts his backpack in front of his face and torso and sprints straight at Bond with a scream. Hesitating to shoot the bomb, Bond lowers his aim and fires a shot at his leg which causes Bomber #3 to stumble forward and launch himself at Bond, the scream suggesting that he is about to explode his device. Bond dives through a shop window to avoid the impending blast… But it never comes and Bomber #3 tumbles down a flight of stairs which seemingly puts him out of action.
Bond picks himself up and heads in the direction of Shah and his pursuer. We see Shah emerging from the mosque.
EXT. MOSQUE & BUSTLING MAIN STREET - DAY
Shah carries on down a bustling main street. There are large groups of women in burkas on the street, having come from prayers.
A burka-clad individual emerges from the mosque; it is Bomber #2 who has switched outfits and now stalks amongst the women in the crowd. Shah pushes his way through the crowd looking back to see a sea of women in burkas.
POV BOMBER #2
We see Shah ahead turning back. He has slowed to a snail’s pace as he tries to locate his pursuers, unaware of the impending danger. Tension builds as we inch closer to him.
EXT. FIRST FLOOR BALCONIES & BUSTLING MAIN STREET – DAY
Bond is almost directly on top of Shah now but he can’t see any sign of Bomber #2, only women in burkas. He pauses.
Shah still hasn’t located the danger. We see Bomber #2’s eyes as he readies himself to detonate his device.
Suddenly SHOTS FIRED.
Bond has fired two shots in the air and only one ‘woman’ in a burka has looked up, the rest have screamed and scattered. Bond leaps off the balcony and clatters into Bomber #2 forcing his head into the ground in an effective if ungainly move.
Bond, picking himself up, grabs Shah and throws him inside a family home but Bomber #2 is on Bond in a flash and both men grapple and burst through the door of the same house.
INT. FAMILY HOME – DAY
Shah flees up a flight of stairs as Bomber #2 gains an upper hand on Bond and delivers an elbow to the face. Freeing himself from Bond, Bomber #2 heads up the stairs. As he reaches the top he stops, the room seemingly empty. He walks toward the middle of the room and smiles as he sees a cabinet ever so slightly out of place. But…
Bomber #2 collapses in a heap on the floor as Bond emerges at the top of the stairs. Shah also emerges from behind a cabinet and looks at Bond with gratitude.
The street outside is beginning to clear and there is a moment of calm. But… there is the clattering sound of hurried footsteps from the floor below, footsteps with a limp.
Bond drags the body of Bomber #2 from the middle of the room and looks toward the open window.
The footsteps slow and head in the direction of the stairs. We hear the sound of the limping footsteps slowly coming up the stairs. As he inches into view we see the wounded Bomber #3, a face full of rage.
Stopping at the top of the stairs he sees an obscured view of a man, dressed in Shah’s clothes, propped behind a cabinet in a reflection of glass.
EXT. SIDE STREET - DAY
Bond drags Shah, who is now dressed in the burka away from the exploding building. There is the sound of panic and sirens heading toward the scene of the explosion. A team of CIA agents intercept Bond and Shah. Weapons are raised at Bond who stops in his tracks but Shah is whisked away out of sight. Franklin emerges and confronts Bond.
You disobeyed a direct order from a superior officer. You compromised the discretion of the mission. And you put the lives of American agents at risk. I will end you for this.
Franklin turns and walks off with his team leaving Bond alone, bloodied and bruised.
EXT. SKELETON COAST – NAMIBIA - DAY
We open on a tracking shot revealing the beautiful but haunted Skeleton Coast. It’s a jagged, barren stretch devoid of any signs of life, save for the shipwrecked remains of an old vessel banished from the sea and destined to decay beneath the sand. A HELICOPTER comes into view, looking for a place to land between the crushing waves and the jagged rock face.
A helipad placed precariously amongst the rock face presents itself and the helicopter makes its descent. It lands safely, but there is no welcome party.
POV – THE FOOTSTEPS
We exit the helicopter and walk across the helipad and enter a glass walkway.
INT. GLASS WALKWAY – DAY
We see no feet but we hear footsteps walking over the glass walkway. To the sides the sea rages against the rocks and beneath are teeth shaped rocks mimicking the jaws of death. An elevator opens and the sound of footsteps let us know that the person has entered. We see the door close and the elevator descend deep into the rock face.
INT. UNDERGROUND DOME SHAPED LAYER
The elevator doors open on an underground dome. The doom is seemingly empty save for a platform in the centre illuminated by a futuristic light show. The light show is accompanied by moody operatic music. As the footsteps enter the room, the light show and music stop. The room is now in near darkness, save a small lit platform in the centre. The light from the platform is almost blinding in contrast. The footsteps stop just short of the platform.
Welcome. The platform, please.
The voice is low key yet threatening, seemingly coming from nowhere. The footsteps step onto the platform. The person is still not revealed.
VOICE (CONT. O.S.)
You are, of course, aware of the results of the Karachi operation. The information you provided was of a more than satisfactory nature. However, our associates were unable to utilise it to their advantage. Most disappointing.
(Voice lingers on this last word. Beat.)
There is a shuffling of feet on the platform which breaks the silence.
VOICE (CONT. O.S.)
I feel our next operation will require a more personal touch. A suitable target has been identified however, yes?
There is a flicker of recognition with another shuffle of feet.
VOICE (CONT. O.S)
Good, in which case I authorise you to activate Kifo Ushuru.
BIG BEN CHIMEs (O.S.)
EXT. WHITEHALL – LONDON – MORNING
An establishing shot of Whitehall and the foreign office.
To hell with Bond’s professionalism.
INT. M’S OFFICE - MORNING
M is hunched over his desk with Bob Franklin sat causally opposite him.
That information was provided by our agent.
Franklin lifts himself out of his chair and casual makes for the window.
I’m sorry M. But this decision has come from the top. We can’t share sensitive information that might jeopardise our source.
The mythical Magic 66. And what about our source? A British Operative under lock and key at the CIA’s every whim. It’s one rule for you and another for everyone else.
(Shifting to a more serious tone)
Listen, you put your house in order and we will play ball.
The problem is Bob, we’re playing different games altogether. I’m playing defender of the realm; you’re playing the bully from Brooklyn.
Like I said, this comes from the top. You have read my report.
Franklin puts his finger on the report on M’s desk. He looks M in the eyes with a steely stare.
And his defence?
He hasn’t provided any, has he? No report? No defense.
Franklin gets up and heads for the door.
Cut the deadwood M. And we can talk in Denmark.
He stop at the door and turns to M.
It’s a shame Bond couldn’t be here to see his career going down the toilet. I’d love to see the look on his face.
INT. LONDON HOTEL ROOM – DAY
We open on Bond’s face relaxed in a bed, he is clearly enjoying himself. A mane of red hair moves into shot. Bond has company in the form of MARIA. She bites him playfully on the shoulder.
(Without any conviction)
Tell me I’m the only one.
Bond is puzzled by this.
(Deadpan with no emotion)
You’re the only one.
Maria wrestles to a position where she is on top of Bond, her hands pressed into his shoulders and leans in to kiss him.
Bond twists her so he is on top. And she laughs playfully.
INT. CORRIDOR OF LONDON HOTEL – DAY
We see a shot of the corridor leading to the room. We hear the playful noises of Maria through the walls.
INT. LONDON HOTEL ROOM - DAY
We are back in the room, Maria is half dressed on the end of the bed. Bond, behind her, is beginning to button his shirt.
Time to go.
Bond nuzzles into her neck and whispers into her ear.
Are you sure?
Maria, initially enjoying the suggestion, regains her poise and pushes him away.
Maria gets up and fiddles with her hair as she looks in the mirror. Bond makes a final play and nuzzles her from behind. She enjoys it but insists.
James, you’re a monster-
THE KEY CARD ACTIVATES AND THE DOOR OPENS
Maria pulls away and sits on the end of the bed facing away from the door. Bond, half dressed, and strolls to the door where he sees Bob Franklin standing mouth wide open.
Bond walks towards Franklin who is stunned into silence. His shock overwhelming his anger. Bond slips casually past him at the door.
INT. CORRIDOR OF LONDON HOTEL – DAY
Bond walks with a swagger away from Franklin in the background. He wears a cruel devil may care smile on his face as he walks down the corridor.
INT. M’S OFFICE - AFTERNOON
Bond is sat in front of M’s desk like a naughty school boy without a care in the world.
I was just proving a point.
She’s a security risk. And therefore so is he.
(Angry, throwing his hands in the air)
Spare me that rubbish. I haven’t the patience to play these games.
Then maybe I should find something else to do.
Bond is slightly taken aback by M’s bluntness. M sits and opens a draw on his desk taking out a small card which he fiddles with.
Earlier this morning Bob Franklin walked into my office and told me that there was a major terrorist attack against Britain’s international interests imminent.
Bond’s expression has changed, the smug look has gone, replaced with concern.
It could be a bomb at an embassy, the assassination of a high profile British national or an attack on British holiday makers on some beach, destination unknown. And yet he refused to share further information under the pretence that it would risk his source, Magic 66. In reality, he offered a trade. Information, for your resignation.
M slides the card across the desk to Bond who doesn’t pick it up but reads it from the table: MARK HAZZARD, INTERNATIONAL SERCUITY.
An offer. A friend of mine runs an international private security company. Thought it might suit your skillset.
Bond is trying to conceal his hurt and anger.
It’s an offer. Nothing more. If you wish to continue in your current post, I will need your report delivered in full by morning.
Will that be all sir?
M nods. Bond, leaving the business card on the desk, exits the room.
INT. MONEYPENNY’S OFFICE - AFTERNOON
Bond storms through Moneypenny’s office a face like thunder.
Well James, hows—
A slam of the door as Bond exits. Moneypenny is bemused.
INT. BOND’S OFFICE – AFTERNOON
Bond opens his laptop on his desk. He opens an email attachment entitled: REPORT OVERDUE. The attachment is incredibly long and detailed. He deletes the email and opens a web browser. He enters into a search engine: COPENHAGEN SECURITY SUMMIT. He strolls down the page to news article: CIA ANTI-TERROR AND SECURITY CHIEF TO ADDRESS SUMMIT. There is an image of Bob Franklin and Maria arriving outside the Bella tower in Copenhagen. Bond’s eye’s glare intensely at the image.
THE SOUND OF A PLANE SOARING (O.S.)
EXT. BELLA TOWER – COPENHAGEN - DAY
A plane flies over head of the post-modern Bella Tower. There is snow on the ground. The venue for the Copenhagen Security Summit.
INT. COPENHAGEN SECURITY SUMMIT – MAIN CONFERENCE HALL - DAY
Bob Franklin is addressing a large of audience.
Friends, partners. The threats that we face from a globalised world implore us to share information and to cooperate when the lives of citizens of any and all nations are at risk. As Americans, as global leaders in the struggle against terrorism, we put a target on our backs.
M, flanked by Moneypenny, is in the audience. His face appalled at the hypocrisy of Franklin.
But we do so with the full knowledge that with your support, the risk to America is far outweighed by the peace and prosperity we are able to bring across the globe. Thank you.
Franklin finishes his speech to warm applause and makes his way of the platform. M intercepts him and offers a frosty smile and his hand.
Excellent speech Bob.
Though I’m sure the irony was lost on most.
Franklin continues on unashamed. M glares at him as he leaves the conference hall.
INT. COPENHAGEN OPERA HOUSE
We are in the Copenhagen opera house, another post-modern building. A performance of Carmen’s Habanera: The sensual song of a temptress. We pan up to a shot of Maria in the balcony seats of the stunning Copenhagen opera house. She is alone, her mind elsewhere. As her husband joins her in the seats she shifts uncomfortably. He leans in to kiss her on the cheek, but she pulls away.
I need some air.
She gets up to leave and Franklin, distanced from her, signals for a member of his security team, SECURITY #1 to go with her. He follows her out.
INT. COPENHAGEN OPERA HOUSE FOYER – NIGHT
Maria walks disinterestedly in the foyer, Security #1 in tow. A waiter walks up to her with a glass.
May I offer you a drink?
She goes to take the glass but looking up she sees that it is Bond!
(Under her breath)
What the hell are you doing here?
I need a favour.
Why don’t you ask my husband?
Because I think he would say no.
She looks at him angrily. How dare he?!
Your minder is standing 20 feet away and yet we are still having this conversation.
She considers this for a second. Bond knows that he has her attention.
Let’s lose him. Get on the boat in two minutes.
(Looking towards a nearby water taxi)
Make sure you are the last passenger to board.
SECURITY #1 has decided enough is enough and comes between the two of them.
Excuse me sir, I’m going to have to ask you to back away.
(Nose to nose)
You’re going to make me, are you?
The two men are a mirror of each other, both from a military background, neither giving an inch.
I think you might be a little out of your league here sir.
Bond walks away leaving Maria with the security guard. We see him giving her a dressing down from Bond’s perspective across the foyer. She storms off petulantly towards…
EXT. DOCK AREA – COPENHAGEN OPERA HOUSE
Bond stalks in the shadows as she makes another scene outside the opera house. People are boarding the nearby water taxi and it is almost ready to leave.
I want to go on the boat.
Security #1 gives her a look that says no, but then relents knowing he will not win an argument with this woman tonight. She motions to get aboard and he follows her.
Bond walks quickly up behind him and targets the little finger on his right hand. Security #1 is completely caught off guard and writhes in pain as his little finger is broken. He drops to his knees, allowing Bond to board the boat with Maria at the last possible second.
Security #1 watches as the boot slowly moves away. He sees Bond in the back of the boat with Maria. Bond salutes. His face a picture of rage. He gets to his feet and runs frantically along the dock to a nearby motorboat, shoving the owner out of the way.
INT. WATER TAXI – NIGHT
Bond now has Maria in the water taxi, not alone, but without the attention of her security minders. He speaks with intensity, has hands on her shoulders.
The next stop is in three minutes, I’ve only got two. I need your full attention and if you don’t like what I have to say, I will leave and you will never see me again.
He looks her in the eyes, a flicker of agreement.
You don’t love your husband do you? You never have done.
Again the same flicker of acknowledgement.
Good, that will make this easier. Your husband has information vital to the lives of British citizens across the globe. He is refusing to share that information and I need you to think-
-How would I—
-His laptop, emails, a phone call. Anything. You can read him can’t you? You know when he is lying, when you have stumbled upon something. Anything from the last few days? I just need a destination, a city, a place—
And with that he looks up and opens an escape hatch above them.
EXT. MOTOR BOAT – NIGHT
Security #1 is in pursuit of the water taxi in a motorboat. He closes in rapidly on the slow moving taxi ahead but has to slow as he approaches a low hanging bridge which the water taxi has just passed under.
EXT. COPENHAGEN BRIDGE
We see a shot of the motorboat beginning to pass under the bridge.
SUDDENLY BOND SWINGS DOWN
kicking Security #1 in the face. We see Security #1 tumble off the side of the boat into the water. Bond, still clinging on to the railings on the bridge, swings for a couple of seconds. Satisfied that his work is done, he pulls himself up.
EXT. COPENHAGEN NYHAVN
Bond looks down at Security #1 paddling frantically in the freezing cold water. He gives him a salute and walks off with a swagger against the beautiful backdrop of Nyhavn waterfront. A colourful collection of buildings and boats.
Security #1’s motorboat, still gently accelerating crashes tamely into some of the other boats.
INT. COPENHAGEN SECURITY SUMMIT – MAIN CONFERENCE HALL - DAY
We are back in the conference hall, M is giving his address.
I’d like to build on what Bob Franklin said yesterday. I believe in cooperation and the sharing of intelligence between friends and allies.
M is stumbling through his notes with no conviction. This is further compounded when he see’s Bond walking down the left isle of the conference hall.
And as Bob said, we are collectively a lot safer when we partner together.
Bond has been intercepted by Moneypenny. Moneypenny then heads to the stage with a note in her hand.
M takes the note and reads it. He then resumes with improved confidence.
But intelligence sharing only works when it’s a two way street. One ill-timed snub can build a culture of suspicion and ultimately, endanger the lives of the citizens that we are all privileged to serve.
M is now speaking directly to Franklin in the audience who is seemingly unmoved at the pointed remarks.
I would like to digress from my notes and end with a story of where it is working: Kenya
Franklin face turns to thunder: how did he get that information?!
Yes in Kenya, the sharing of intelligence between Kenyan, US and, more recently, British intelligence services has given us the upper hand in the region. The fight against Al-Shabaab is one that we are winning. And I believe we will continue to do so, as long as we all play our part. Thank you.
M leaves the stage to warm applause. Franklin is not happy. Then he sees Bond with Moneypenny, this does little to improve his mood.
INT. SMALL CONFERENCE ROOM – BELLA TOWER – DAY
M follows Moneypenny and Bond into a conference room. They have already started work, laptops and projectors with information and images on.
A look of mutual respect is shared between them.
What have we got? Leads, sources. I’ll contact our station in Kenya.
Nothing concrete sir, but 007 thinks she might be worth leaning on.
An image of a beautiful African woman is on the screen. She is dressed in all black and wears a hijab.
Lupita Npyo. British national with Kenyan roots, radicalised whilst at university in London. Now a key member of a terror cell coordinating attacks in Kenya and the surrounding region.
Where was she studying?
American studies at UCL.
It fits the profile of girls like her. A stark contrast to the culture of her family which she is persuaded cannot be reconciled with her Islamic faith, leaving her open to more radical approaches. Usually by a dominant male.
An image of a male terrorist pops up on the screen on a second screen. Brandishing an AK-47, he wears the green khaki and the black head gear that is a trademark of Al-Shabaab. The face is worn and menacing.
Muhammed. Masterminded the university attacks in Kenya. Nasty piece of work. What’s your approach?
I plan to spook her. We know all her secrets, the net is closing in. And then offer her a way out.
An offer from a dominant male.
Moneypenny goes to leave. Leaning in close to Bond, with the image of Lupita behind her.
Careful James. Forbidden fruit rarely tastes as good as it looks.
Bond smiles playfully at her and then follows her to the door.
Bond stops and turns at the door.
Whilst I’m grateful-
-Whilst you are grateful for the intelligence, this doesn’t change the fact that you find my approach both childish and insubordinate and consequently you are still basically pissed off with me.
M is slightly taken back by Bond’s bluntness.
(With both eyebrows raised)
INT. MAIN CONFERENCE HALL - DAY
Franklin has a phone to his ear. We see Bond leaving the small conference room over his shoulder, the two exchanging the briefest of glances.
(Into his phone)
Yes that’s right. You’re going to have company.