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The Tragic End of the Bronze Age (The Screenplay)

The Tragic End of the Bronze Age (The Screenplay)

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Published by Tom Slattery
A documentary screenplay based on the author's theory that the initial smallpox pandemic wiped out bronze-age civilizations in the Old World.
A documentary screenplay based on the author's theory that the initial smallpox pandemic wiped out bronze-age civilizations in the Old World.

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Published by: Tom Slattery on Apr 11, 2008
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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04/16/2013

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THE TRAGIC END OF THE BRONZE AGE(nonfiction screenplay for documentary on the initialsmallpox pandemic that brought an end to bronze-agecivilization)
By Tom Slattery
Book of same title by same author published by Writers Club Press2001Because of the unusual newness of theoretical material in thisscreenplay, it is annotated to aid audiovisual professionals toresearch details.
 
"THE TRAGIC END OF THE BRONZE AGE"
FADE IN:INT. LIVING ROOM OR LIBRARY SETEpisode begins with a scholarly INTRODUCER. (He or she mayor may not be the same as the NARRATOR.)INTRODUCERCatastrophes shaped ancient history.Ancient history that goes so far backwe generally think of it as archeologyand even anthropology.SUPER, OR SPLIT-SCREEN: TIMELINE GRAPH.CENTURY-CALIBRATED GRAPH SHOWS: beginning of last Ice Ageseries circa 35,000 BC, end of Ice Age circa 8,000 BC,climate change 2200 BC, Thera volcanic explosion circa 1500BC, Population decimation - smallpox caused? - disaster1200-1100 BC, followed by indication of dark age, 1100 BCuntil circa 800 BC, then indicator of 0 AD, indicator ofpresent. (introduced "timeline graph" format is usedthroughout)INTRODUCER (continuing)There was the onset and then theretreat of the last Ice Age. The onsetmay have contributed to thedisappearance of the Neanderthals. Itscomparatively sudden end camecoincidentally with, and thus may haveinduced, the beginnings of agricultureand the city-based human epoch we callcivilization.Then there may have been a suddenclimate change four millennia ago. In2200 BC, coincidentally about the timeComet Hale-Bopp previously appeared in2213 BC, fragile early civilizations inEgypt and Mesopotamia collapsed intochaos for at least a century.*
Science 20 August 1993, pg 995.Pharaoh Pepi II followed by First IntermediateAkkad and King Naram-Sin overrun by Guti, then Amorites.
 
INTODUCERThere was the explosion of the volcanicGreek island of Thera, also calledSantorini, in the Aegean Sea about 1500BC that sent tsunami or tidal waveacross the eastern Mediterranean Ä thatwould have destroyed not only hundredsof port towns and cities but much ofthe this part of the ancient world'sboats, docks, warehouses.And it undoubtedly would have killedskilled personnel such as boatbuilders,sailors, and experts in trade andcommerce.But one of the worst catastrophes mayhave been caused by a virus, the variolavirus, about four hundred years afterthat. This may have been the world'sfirst smallpox epidemic, and it appearsto have struck not long after 1200 BCand reached a peak around 1130 BC.Egyptian, Mediterranean, andMesopotamian civilizations collapsed.As far away as China, civilizationcollapsed. By 1100 BC - across theEurasian and African continents - theeconomic, social, political, and evenreligious foundations of civilizationappear to have been demolished. A DarkAge lasting hundreds of years began,the longest and deepest Dark Age in thehistory of civilization.GRAPHICS, SPECIAL EFFECTS.Slowly turning PLANET EARTH IN SPACE.SUPER: TIMELINE GRAPH FROM ICE AGE TO PRESENT(11th & 12th centuries BC highlighted)NARRATOR (v.o.)In the twelfth and eleventh centuriesBC, centered within a single generationbetween 1150 and 1130 BC, anunparalleled catastrophe struck.

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