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The Original Script Set In The Old West

 
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Sun Wukong
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2006 9:30 pm    Post subject: The Original Script Set In The Old West Reply with quote

Has anybody actually read the first screenwriter's first atempts at the story? I've wondered what (if anything) in BTILC is actually from it - I know somewhere on this site (or the Wikipedia entry) indicates that the story of Lo Pan is the only holdeover, but I'd love to hear from somebody whose read it.
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Bazooka Goof
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PostPosted: Mon Dec 18, 2006 10:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome to the Forum, Sun Wukong! Very Happy

I haven't read the original script, but there might be additional info on imdb.com: (Apart from searching the main site here)

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0090728/.
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Sun Wukong
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 7:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the welcome - when I first got this on VHS, I watched it three times back to back, a feat unmatched by me of any other film. It's great!

I checked the IMDB page, which indicated a little bit about the script, but I'm surprised it hasn't been discovered and fully covered in fan circles.

In a way, with the advent of more fantastic westerns since BTILC came out (Brisco County, Wanted Dead or Alive), was the original concept ahead of it's time?
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Bazooka Goof
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 12:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sun Wukong wrote:
I checked the IMDB page, which indicated a little bit about the script, but I'm surprised it hasn't been discovered and fully covered in fan circles.

In a way, with the advent of more fantastic westerns since BTILC came out (Brisco County, Wanted Dead or Alive), was the original concept ahead of it's time?


Admittedly, BTiLC is just a cult hit- so goodies like original scripts for fans to discover are rare, unlike all the Star Wars junk you can find practically everywhere.

Also, given how BTiLC didn't perform so well at the box office, I'd definitely agree with your statement about it being ahead of its time. It almost seems like it's more popular now than back in the summer of '86... (sigh) - I saw it in the theater myself that year. Cool
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Sun Wukong
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 19, 2006 7:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was lucky - we still had a UHF video-only station here in Hotlanta (Channel 69) that had a film music video program - and I got to see the Big Trouble in Little China video twice before seeing the film in theatres!
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Sun Wukong
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 23, 2006 1:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's an oddity - Jack Burton, at the end of the movie when he's leaving the Dragon of the Black Pool resturant, is using what appear to be saddlebags to store his stuff as he walks off. Could this have been an in-joke to the original Western version?
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Bazooka Goof
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 23, 2006 10:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sun Wukong wrote:
Here's an oddity - Jack Burton, at the end of the movie when he's leaving the Dragon of the Black Pool resturant, is using what appear to be saddlebags to store his stuff as he walks off. Could this have been an in-joke to the original Western version?


If it is, no one's telling! Smile (I wish the commentary on the DVD was a bit more revealing; generally, when you put Russell and Carpenter in a room and have them comment on their movies, you usually get a scintillating experience. Unfortunately on the BTiLC commentary they tend to drift away and lose focus.)
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Sun Wukong
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 26, 2008 4:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Got some infor from today's Wikipedia entry:

Quote:
Screenplay

The first version of the screenplay was written by first-time screenwriters Gary Goldman and David Weinstein. They had written a Western originally set in the 1880s with Jack Burton being a cowboy who rides into town. Producer Paul Monash bought their script and had them do at least one rewrite, but still didn’t like the results. He remembers, “The problems came largely from the fact it was set in turn-of-the-century San Francisco, which affected everything – style, dialogue, action”.[1] Goldman and Weinstein left the project because they did not want to change the setting to a contemporary one as per Monash’s wishes and felt that they had done their best.

Along with his co-producer Keith Barish, Monash brought in screenwriter W. D. Richter, a veteran script doctor (and director of cult film The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai) to extensively rewrite the script as he felt that the Wild West and fantasy elements didn’t work together. The screenwriter modernized everything. Almost everything in the original script was discarded except for Lo Pan’s story.[2] Richter realized that “what it needed wasn’t a rewrite but a complete overhaul. It was a dreadful screenplay. This happens often when scripts are bought and there’s no intention that the original writers will stay on”.[1] Richter used Rosemary's Baby as his template, presenting “the foreground story in a familiar context – rather than San Francisco at the turn-of-the-century, which distances the audience immediately – and just have one simple remove, the world underground, you have a much better chance of making direct contact with the audience”.[1]

Carpenter made his own additions to Richter’s rewrites which included strengthening the Gracie Law role and linking her to Chinatown, removing a few action sequences due to budgetary restrictions and eliminating material deemed offensive to Chinese Americans. The characters in the film reminded Carpenter “of the characters in Bringing Up Baby or His Girl Friday. These are very 1930s, Howard Hawks people”.[2] The rapid-fire delivery of dialogue, especially between Jack Burton and Gracie Law, is an example of what the director is referring to. Carpenter was disappointed that Richter did not get a proper screenwriting credit on the movie because of a ruling by the Writers Guild of America, west that gave it to Goldman and Weinstein based on the WGA screenwriting credit system which protects original writers.
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Bazooka Goof
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 27, 2008 10:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the post, Sun! Cool

That is an intriguing read. Straight westerns are fairly common; it's the hybrid mix of genres that make a movie much more interesting. I wonder how well the movie would have worked if it had been done in a 1880's setting.

Supernatural westerns are incredibly rare. Someone on this board was doing doing a short, but he hasn't posted in years so I don't know if it went anywhere. Confused
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ZAROVE



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PostPosted: Fri Nov 28, 2008 3:27 pm    Post subject: Original Script. Reply with quote

I too came here seeking the original Script. I always like seeing how stories evolve in the course of manufacture. In fact, I wanted to see just how much a departure it was, as well as read it in its own right.

But alas! I cannot find he oriignal Script.

I also wondered what he original may look like if actually filmed, perhaps as either a "Remake" or, perhaps better, a Straight-to-DVD release that is sold in a 25th anniversary package of BTLC.

THen again, I'm just odd that way.

If any of you find luck in the original, please let me know.
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