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Space Cowboys

Space Cowboys

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Published by The Seeker Of All

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Published by: The Seeker Of All on Aug 08, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Written byKEN KAUFMAN and HOWARD KLAUSNERMay 1999 Draft
MANUAL MILITARY TYPEWRITERhammers out a screen narration:SUPERIMPOSE: OCTOBER, 1958.The successful launch of Sputnik I hasstarted rumors that manned space flightis a year away for the Soviet Union. TheUnited States has assumed the titanicchallenge of "Taking the high ground ofspace."EXT. USAF PROVING GROUND (CALIFORNIA HIGH DESERT) - DAYA SONIC BOOM in the crystal blue desert sky. A modifiedBell Labs X-2 Ultrasonic JET -- basically a rocket withstubby wings that look more like vestigial fins --SCREAMS upwards, an 80 degree climb into space. On itsside is stylishly painted "Daedalus."INT. X- JET - CLOSE ON ALTIMETER - THAT MOMENT108,999 FEET... THE "999's" roll over.The pilot's voice strains with the G-forces and thin oxygen.PILOT (V.O.)109,000. Come on, Frank, let'spoke our nose into space.The pilot is Major WILLIAM "HAWK" HAWKINS, 26. Inthe seat behind him is MAJOR FRANK CORVIN, 29. Both wearbulky pressure suits and space helmets.FRANKNo. That's enough, Hawk. We'reapproaching heat barrier. Let'slevel off.(into his radio)Recover One, this is Falcon.Beginning descent now.INT. AIR FORCE B- - THAT MOMENTTwelve miles below the X-2. Barrel-chested, buzz-cuttedCaptain "TANK" SULLIVAN is at the controls.TANKRoger, Daedalus. Got you on thescope, Frank.Tank sharpens the radar blip. As he does, we see aplastic hula girl on the instrument panel "dancing"
2.frenetically.INT. X- - THAT MOMENTThe altimeter hits 110,000. Frank and Hawk are breathingharder.HAWKBingo. 110,000th floor, ladies'lingerie.The DRONE of the rocket MOTOR HESITATES -- a nanosecondat most -- then RESUMES as normal.FRANKYou catch that, Hawk?Hawk is in the zone, listening and feeling the airplane.FRANKHawk!EXT. DESERT GROUND BELOW -- THAT MOMENTCaptain JERRY O'NEILL sits outside a USAF truck in frontof a radar screen reading a Playboy magazine. He readsthe copy aloud to himself.JERRYMiss September, herself apromising student pilot, has aparticular weakness for structuralengineers with Ph.D.'s in astro-physics.He slowly moves the Playboy away and sees a scorpionclimbing his bare ankle. He rolls up the magazinetightly, holds it above the scorpion, ready to swat it.He looks at the scorpion... he looks at Miss September'ssmiling face and airbrushed-breast...He can't do it, he can't sully this redheaded vision: Hecalmly grabs the scorpion by its stinger tail and flingsit. Hawk's voice crackles over the RADIO.HAWK (V.O.)She's alright, she's talking to me.You trust me, don't you, Frank?JERRYUh oh... here we go again.INT. X- - THAT MOMENTTHROUGH the canopy -- the horizon -- the blue turns to

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