FADE IN: "SURF JIMMY" EXT. SPECTACULAR COASTAL VIEW -- DAY Shimmering medium-sized urban city on the edge of white sandy beach. Flock of sea birds make a "v" over paradise. Stark contrast to -- EXT. VENDORíS ROW -- CONTINUOUS Tropical scenery marred by hucksters, who hawk everything from plastic shell lamps to fried dough. In the middle of the fray, a 6-ft. turquoise blue Styrofoam wave with a surf board installed inside. SIGN READS: "SURF JIMMYíS, EVERYONE CATCHES A WAVE. $10" Beside this monstrosity, SURF JIMMY, over-the-hill surfer tries to lure in the passersby. He weaves in and out of the crowd. Decked in hip surf gear 20 years too young. SURF JIMMY Surfís up, folks. Catch a wave? Címon. Donít tell me any of you actually got in the water today. Group of LADIES in team t-shirts and a KID stop to look. SURF JIMMY (suggestive) The longboard. The money shot. Itís erotic. Itís exotic. Ride the big tube, Ladies? (to Kid) How about you, buddy? Surfís up. KID How old are you? SURF JIMMY Under 50, okay? I made nothing of myself and Iím proud of it. I was a dude before dude was cool. Now get up on the wave. Ten bucks, Iíll get a great shot. Hurry up. KID It looks kind of fake-y. SURF JIMMY It is kind of fake, Mr. Brain. You stand there. Pay ten bucks. Lie and say you rode the big one. KID I donít want to look like a poser. SURF JIMMY Do it for me, kid. KID I donít want to. SURF JIMMY Why not? KID Itís not real. Jimmy loses it, wrestles the kid to the ground. SURF JIMMY Of course itís not real! Itís Styrofoam. Nothing is real. The best things in life are fake. We all grow up and live a lie anyway. Go ask your parents for ten bucks. Címon. For me. Pretty please? KID Mister, you need an intervention. Lets kid go. But kid lingers. SURF JIMMY An intervention. Get out of here. Last call, folks. Surfís up! KID Take the ten bucks. Here. I donít want a picture. Just take it. SURF JIMMY (snatches bill) All right. You win. Now get out of here. A freak tornado just hit Miami. Weíre next. EXT. SKY OVERHEAD Roiling clouds whip up suddenly. A fast-moving front. Flock of sea birds thrown out of formation, violent gusts. EXT. VENDORíS ROW Tourists run by. Sandy wind starts to blow. SURF JIMMY Hurricane Special. Five bucks. Hurry up, folks. Five bucks buys an adventure. Donít miss out. Crowd disappears. Vendors break down their stalls. CONCESSION OWNER stops by. CONCESSION OWNER Everybodyís evacuating, Jimmy. You better go home. SURF JIMMY Nah. Keeping a low profile. I didnít make my Ďnutí this month. Missed the rent. CONCESSION OWNER Hey, we all get tired of being Peter Pan someday. SURF JIMMY Yeah. Guess I got to grow up before I get too old, huh? CONCESSION OWNER You might have to get a regular job SURF JIMMY Blaspheme! I live to surf. CONCESSION OWNER Take cover. Take care of yourself. Concession Owner exits. EXT. PUBLIC BEACH AREA Nobody in sight. Punishing rain. Jimmy shoves the fake wave, just a huge wooden crate on wheels from the rear view, across the pavement. SURF JIMMY (to himself) Everybody Catches a Wave everybody except Surf Jimmy. Man, itís weird weather. Wind howls now. He pushes wave over the sand to the dunes. EXT. INTERSTATE FREEWAY SUPER -- EXIT TO POMPANO BEACH, FLORIDA Crush of escaping stragglers. Various vehicles speed along the north- bound lanes out of town. ANNOUNCERíS VOICE We know that Hurricane Candace touched down six minutes ago. Again this is an electrical storm, folks. Stay away from anything metal... (crackling static) Small craft warning. Coast Guard alert. This is the frequency of the Emergency Broadcast Service. Pompano Beach, Florida -- EXT. POMPANO BEACHFRONT Gale force winds pound the down-at-the-heels homes that dot the coastline. Shingles fly in the wind. Whole porches come loose. A refrigerator does end-overs. EXT. VENDORíS ROW Skeletal stalls flap in the breeze, poles come loose. Total loss, everything blown to kingdom come. EXT. OUT ON THE HORIZON Sky darkens as coastal town is blown to bits. Eerie blue web of lightning flashes overhead. CRACK of lightning on the surface. Spider veins of light touch down on the ocean far off. Bright flash. Magical. Flash of something out there. FADE TO BLACK EXT. DESERTED RESORT AREA Mother Nature has quite a hangover. Household appliances litter the shore. A chewed-up couch glides in and out of the surf. The place been taken apart and pieces of somebodyís life are everywhere. EXT. ACCESS ROAD A REMOTE TV VAN rumbles up beside the ruined bungalows. Side READS: "WJNX! Floridaís Finest" Reporter RON DANIELS hops out of the van. His down-to-earth assistant LISA LAWLER hops out after him, with camera man MARK. DANIELS Itís Emmy time. Find me a birdís nest. We pan up from broken shells in a battered nest to homes destroyed. Dreams ruined. That kind of thing. Break the eggs if you have to -- LISA Ron. Donít be a pig. DANIELS Lisa. Genius at play, remember? Radio Arty. Just tell him weíve got a real find. Iíll ad lib. LISA Heíll ad lib. Wonderful. She enters the van. EXT. DUNES NEAR THE BUNGALOWS Ominous BOOT PRINTS on the dunes. Mark sets up the camera as Daniels stakes a claim. EXT. NEAR REMOTE VAN Lisa talks into TV-vanís CB. LISA (into mouthpiece) Heís taken the high ground. Made Mark set up on a hill... ARTY (VOICE ONLY) Donít let him go theatrical. Promise me, Lisa? EXT. LEEWARD SIDE OF DUNES Mark fiddles with the tripod. DANIELS Is the light good here? O.S. BANGING heard. MARK Did you hear that? DANIELS What? MARK Maybe somebodyís in trouble. DANIELS Weíre not here to help. Period. We got the news to report. I have to find some good light. Daniels wanders off a ways. CLOSE ON MARK: he adjusts a leg on the tripod. Then looks down to see shadows of THREE FIGURES on the sand. Instead of words, his jaw drops open. Mark tries to speak, but canít. Off his reaction, Daniels turns to see a bizarre swarthy trio: curly haired BLAHA, 40s, in a leather vest; weather-beaten old man YARBOROUGH, and a disgruntled third younger man, MARLIN. BLAHA Speak your name. DANIELS (to Mark) Disasters. You get the Red Cross. Perverts. Recluses. Nuts out of the driftwood. (to Blaha) Recognize me? The Ron Daniels. Eye-witness news. WJNX. Want my autograph? BLAHA Is this America? DANIELS Last time I checked. MARK Ron. Letís boogie. I mean it, man. DANIELS Are you kidding? The lightís great. Roll the tape. Theyíre harmless. A stand-off. Mark now has his hands up in the air. More BANGING in the background, which makes the newcomers edgy. BLAHA We are nomads. Feared by man and country alike -- DANIELS Bet it beats a day job. Weíre on deadline, buddy. Camera. Now. Daniels faces the camera. Mark gets behind the eyepiece. DANIELS (to camera) Ron Daniels, reporting live. Weíre here, in the path of the biggest natural disaster to hit South Florida in five hundred years. We see first-hand that, as man must fear other men, so must we live in Natureís shadow -- Yarborough and Marlin bushwhack him. MARLIN How about we slit ye from your gullet to your zatch? WHAM, black eye for Daniels. They rough him up easily. Mark hangs onto his equipment for dear life, still filming... until Yarborough comes over to inspect his camera. Big FACE in the lens, a curious glare. YARBOROUGH I can see myself... MARK START THE VAN, LISE! Blaha pulls his men off Daniels. Ron scurries on all fours. Gets up, rushes after Mark. They hop in the van, which HONKS loudly. Sand flies. YARBOROUGH Never seen the likes of them. MARLIN Nor I. BLAHA Aye. Weíve hit land, all right. What manner of place is it? EXT. FARTHER DOWN BATTERED BEACH VW Camper parked on the beach. Sand-blasted. CLOSE ON: VW CAMPER Temporary home of Surf Jimmy. He bangs on the fogged windows. Tries window levers, which are stuck. The van rocks as he yanks on door handle, also stuck. SURF JIMMY (VOICE) Open the door. Somebody! Open up -- BLAHA Who hails there? The throwbacks circle the van. SURF JIMMY (VOICE) HEY. Yoo-hoo. Try the handle. The handle, moron. YARBOROUGH Itís a man. Trapped inside! BLAHA To whom does he hold allegiance? SURF JIMMY Hey. Iím talking to you, MaGoo. Is it safe to come out yet? Suddenly the door gives way, Jimmy spills out. Razor sharp, an ornate sword blade comes to rest on his neck. SURF JIMMY Pardon me, do you have any Grey Poupon? BLAHA (to Jimmy) I saved your stinking hide. Now you are mine. (beat) Díye pledge yer loyalty? SURF JIMMY Under these conditions? Yes. They rifle his clothes. YARBOROUGH He has all his teeth, Blaha. SURF JIMMY Thanks. I floss. You are? BLAHA Deadly. Feared from Hispanola to the Tortugas Islands. SURF JIMMY Thatís quite a pronouncement. And such remarkable diction for a maniac. You are a maniac, arenít you? BLAHA On your feet, yeoman. SURF JIMMY Yeoman? BLAHA On your feet or die. SURF JIMMY ĎOn your feet or die.í Sounds like English. With an unfamiliar twang. Do I have any other options?