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ALL SCRIPTS





Interview with the Vampire



	Interview with the Vampire

	Screenplay by			Anne Rice

	Produced by			Stephen Woolley
					David Geffen

	Directed by			Neil Jordan



	Cast List:

	Tom Cruise			Lestat de Lioncourt
	Brad Pitt			Louis Pointe du Lac
	Antonio Banderas		Armand
	Stephen Rea			Santiago
	Christian Slater		Daniel Malloy
	Kirsten Dunst			Claudia








									 FADE IN:


	INT. ROOM - NIGHT (SAN FRANCISCO)

	A small bare room, illuminated only by the streetlight
	coming through the window.

	A hand presses a cassette into a recorder and fiddles
	with a small microphone.

	Malloy sits over a table fiddling with the tape. He is
	young, half-shaven, dressed in T-shirt and jeans. He
	looks too -

	LOUIS, who stands by the window, looking out on the
	street, with his back to Malloy. Louis is dressed in an
	old-fashioned suit.

				LOUIS
		So you want me to tell you the
		story of my life...

				MALLOY
		That's what I do. I interview
		people. I collect lives. F.M.
		radio. F.F.R.C. I just interviewed
		a genuine hero, a cop who -

				LOUIS
			(quietly interrupting)
		You'd have to have a lot of tape
		for my story. I've had a very
		unusual life.

				MALLOY
		So much the better. I've got a
		pocket full of tapes.

				LOUIS
		You followed me here, didn't you?

				MALLOY
		Saw you in the street outside. You
		seemed interesting. Is this where
		you live?

				LOUIS
		It's just a room...

				MALLOY
		So shall we begin?
			(playfully, almost
			teasing)
		What do you do?

				LOUIS
		I'm a vampire.

	Malloy laughs.

				MALLOY
		See? I knew you were interesting.
		You mean this literally, I take it?

				LOUIS
		Absolutely. I was watching you
		watching me. I was waiting for you
		in that alleyway. And then you
		began to speak.

				MALLOY
		Well, what a lucky break for me.

				LOUIS
		Perhaps lucky for both of us.

	Still in shadow he turns from the window and approaches
	the table.

				LOUIS
		I'll tell you my story. All of it.
		I'd like to do that very much.

	Malloy is uneasy as he studies the shadowy figure,
	fascinated but afraid.

				MALLOY
		You were going to kill me? Drink my
		blood?

				LOUIS
		Yes but you needn't worry about
		that now. Things change.

	Louis stands opposite, hand on the chair. Malloy is
	riveted.

				MALLOY
		You believe this, don't you? That
		you're a vampire? You really
		think...

				LOUIS
		We can't begin this way. Let me
		turn on the light.

				MALLOY
		But I thought vampires didn't like
		the light.

				LOUIS
		We love it. I only wanted to
		prepare you.

	Louis pulls the chord of the overhead naked light bulb.


	LOUIS' FACE

	Appears inhumanly white, eyes glittering. Inhuman or
	not alive. the effect is subtle, beautiful and ghastly.

				MALLOY
		Good God!

	He struggles to suppress fear and understand.

				LOUIS
		Don't be frightened. I want this
		opportunity.

	The light appears to go out by itself and suddenly
	Louis is in the chair, dimly lit by the street-light
	from the window. The cassette is turning.

				MALLOY
		How did you do that?

				LOUIS
		The same way you do it. A series of
		simple gestures. Only I moved too
		fast for you to see. I'm flesh and
		blood, you see. But not human. I
		haven't been human for two hundred
		years.

	Malloy is speechless, frightened yet enthralled.

				LOUIS
		What can I do to put you at ease?
		Shall we begin like David
		Copperfield? I am born, I grow up.
		Or shall we begin when I was born
		to darkness, as I call it. That's
		really where we should start, don't
		you think?

				MALLOY
		You're not lying to me, are you?

				LOUIS
		Why should I lie? 1791 was the year
		it happened. I was twenty-four -
		younger than you are now.

				MALLOY
		Yes.

				LOUIS
		But times were different then. I
		was a man at that age. The master
		of a large plantation just south of
		New Orleans...

									 DISSOLVE
									 TO:


	EXT. LOUISIANA - DAY (1791)

	A disheveled Louis, hair in pigtail, in deep pocket
	frock coat, rides his horse through the fields of
	indigo, passing an overseer and slaves at work.

	He passes slave quarters and the distant colonial
	mansion of Pointe du Lac.

	He comes to a small parish church and a graveyard. he
	dismounts and walks through the tombs to an elaborate
	one in Greek Style.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		I had just lost my wife in
		childbirth. She and the infant had
		been buried less than half a year.

	There is a marble angel above the tomb, feminine, with
	a tiny cherub angel in her arms. Louis looks from the
	angel, down to the inscriptions on the tomb:

	"DIANNE DE POINTE DU LAC 1763 - 1791
	INFANT JEAN MARIE - 1791"

	Louis rips away the vines already covering the
	inscription, then drinks from a pocket-flask. His face
	is ashen.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		I was twenty-four and life seemed
		finished. I couldn't bear the pain
		of their loss. I longed for a
		release from it.


	INT. WATERFRONT TAVERN - NIGHT

	Louis in ragged lace and dirty brocade sitting between
	two whores at a gaming table, drinking absinthe. All
	around him flatboatmen, whores, gamblers, black African
	freedmen.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		I wanted to lose everything. My
		wealth, my estate, my sanity. But
		Lady Luck didn't oblige.

	Louis displays a hand of four aces. A gambler at the
	table stands in fury, over turning money, cards,
	drinks.

				LOUIS
		You're calling me a cheat?

				GAMBLER
		I'm calling you a piece of shit -

	The Gambler pulls out a pearl-handled pistol and points
	it at Louis. The crowd hushes and draws back. Louis
	smiles drunkenly and stands. he rips open his lace
	shirt, exposing his chest.

				LOUIS
		Then do me a favor. Get rid of this
		piece of shit...

	The Gambler's finger on the trigger. His hand shakes.

				LOUIS
		You lack the courage of your
		convictions, sir. Do it.

	LESTAT, a hooded figure in the corner, smiles from
	beneath the shadow of his hood. Gleaming blue eyes.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		Most of all I longed for death. I
		know that now. I invited it, a
		release from the pain of living...

	The Gambler lowers his gun, scowling. Louis pockets the
	fistfulls of coins he has won.


	EXT. WATERFRONT - NIGHT

	Loud, crowded riverfront taverns full of ruffians.
	Louis staggers down, an arm around a whore, drinking
	from a bottle. A pockmarked pimp follows behind.

				LOUIS
		My invitation was open to anyone.
		Sailors, thieves, whores and
		slaves...


	EXT. WHARF - NIGHT

	Louis, quite insensible, being propped up against a
	wall by the whore in a dank wharf over the water. The
	pimp rifles his pockets, then pulls a knife, about to
	slice his throat, when a shadow falls over him. He
	turns, and we see the face of Lestat, who lifts him
	into the air by his throat, breaking his neck. the
	whore screams and Lestat's other hand clamps over her
	mouth. Lestat drags her towards him. Louis falls to the
	ground, supported no more, insensible. Close on his
	face, as we hear the last breaths of life of the whore,
	off.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		But it was a vampire that accepted.


	IN THE WATER

	The bodies of the thief and whore float by. Above on
	the wharf, Louis, now awake, stares down at them. He
	turns, to see Lestat, towering above him.

				LESTAT
		They would have killed you -

				LOUIS
		Then my luck would have changed.

				LESTAT
		You want death? Is it death you
		want?

				LOUIS
		Yes...

	Lestat floats down on top of him, then lifts him in the
	air, draws his head back by the hair and sinks his
	teeth in his neck.


	ON LOUIS' FACE

	Every muscle rigid, teeth clenched, as the blood is
	drained from him.


	ON THEIR FEET

	Hovering above the ground, like two quivering dancers.

	THE WIND billows through the ghostly white sails and
	rigging of the boats around the wharf.


	LESTAT

	Floats higher, with Louis in his arms, draining his
	blood. One hand reaches out and grips a rope, hanging
	from a shipmast. The other holds Louis. He withdraws
	his teeth, and looks into Louis' drained face.

				LESTAT
		You still want death? Or have you
		tasted it enough?

	Louis can barely get the words out.

				LOUIS
		Enough...

	Lestat smiles and lets him go. Louis falls and plummets
	into the water below.


	LOUIS' FACE

	Coming to the surface, in the water lapping by the
	wharf. The bodies of the whore and thief float beside
	him. He looks up and sees Lestat way above him,
	dangling from the rope of the shipmast.


	INT. ROOM - SAN FRANCISCO

	ON MALLOY'S FACE

	Captivated, terrified, enthralled.

				MALLOY
		That's how it happened?

				LOUIS
		No. The Gift of Darkness requires
		more than that, as you'll see.


	EXT. WATERFRONT - DAY

	Louis floating by mudflats, surrounded by dead fish,
	the carcasses of animals, eighteenth century rubbish.
	He gets to his feet and walks weakly through the
	mudflats. The sun is coming up over the sea behind him.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		He left me half dead that morning.
		he wanted something from me. He
		came back the following night.


	INT. LAVISH FRENCH-FURNISHED BEDROOM AT POINT DU LAC

	Louis is delirious in a four-poster bed, shrouded with
	mosquito netting. A female slave, YVETTE, bathes his
	face with a rag. She is crying. Other slave women hover
	in the shadows. Yvette puts out all candles save one by
	the bed, and withdraws, with the others.

	Candlelight flickers on the face of the bisque virgin.

	Louis tosses and turns, dreaming, murmuring
	incoherently. Then he opens his eyes.

	LESTAT, exquisitely dressed in French clothing, stands
	by the bed smiling. In the light of the candle we see
	that he is not human; skin too white; eyes too bright.
	Lestat looks amiable, even mischievous, but impossible
	- and angel or monster.

	Louis grabs his pistol from the table and cocks it.

				LOUIS
		Who the hell are you? What are you
		doing in my house?

				LESTAT
		And a beautiful house it is too.
		Yours is a good life, isn't it?

	Louis takes aim. Lestat puts his hand over the barrel.
	Louis fires. The bullet tears a hole in Lestat's hand.
	Lestat is unfazed. He takes the gun from Louis' hand
	and throws it away. His hand begins to heal.

				LESTAT
		You're not afraid of anything, are
		you?

				LOUIS
		Why should I be?

	Louis reaches for his sword, hanging by the bed, and
	point it. Lestat laughs indulgently. He draws closer.

				LESTAT
		Are you going to put that through
		me too? Ruin my beautiful clothes?

	He comes closer to Louis, right up to his face, so the
	sword passes through his waistcoat.

				LESTAT
		Were all last night's promises for
		nothing?

	He reaches out with his now-healed hand and plucks out
	the sword.

				LOUIS
		What do you want from me?

				LESTAT
		I've come to answer your prayers.
		You want to die, don't you? Life
		has no meaning anymore, does it?

	Lestat sits down on the bed, drawing up one knee. Louis
	is becoming spellbound.

				LESTAT
		The wine has no taste. The food
		sickens you. There seems no reason
		for any of it, does there? But what
		if I could give it back to you?
		Pluck out the pain and give you
		another life? And it would be for
		all time? And sickness and death
		could never touch you again?

	The vampire theme rises, with the sound of a heartbeat.

									 DISSOLVE
									 TO:


	EXT. GRAVEYARD - NIGHT

	The camera drifts through the graveyard where Louis'
	wife is buring. Everything is lit with an eerie glow,
	as if seen through some unearthly eye.

				LESTAT
		Vampires, that's what we are.
		Creatures of darkness, only we see
		it that darkness more clearly than
		any mortal has ever seen...

	Louis and Lestat drifting, dreamlike, through the
	overhanging vines, comes to the grave of his wife and
	child. Above the crypt, the statue of angel, mother and
	child.

				LESTAT
		Wouldn't it be sweet to bid pain
		goodbye? To wave away anguish and
		grief? To embrace the peace of the
		unending night?

	The marble fingers of the child on the statue move. The
	angel raises her head and has the face of Louis wife,
	Diane. she raises her hand and touches Louis tear-
	streamed face. The child speaks.

				MARBLE CHILD
		Papa...

	Louis reaches out to embrace them and finds himself
	touching cold marble. He cries out in anguish-

				LOUIS
		Diane!!!!

				LESTAT
		They are gone, Louis. Death took
		them. Death which you can now
		destroy...

				LOUIS
		NO!!!!!


	INT. LOUIS BEDROOM - NIGHT

	Louis, thrashing on the bed in a delirium. Lestat
	places a hand on his forehead and soothes him.

				LESTAT
		You have to ask me for this. You
		have to want it, do you hear me?

				LOUIS
		Give it to me!!!

				LESTAT
		Vampires. We thrive on blood.

				LOUIS
		I want it!

	Lestat bends close as if to drink Louis' blood. Louis
	does not shrink back, but stares into his eyes. Lestat
	draws back, then stands up and goes to the French
	doors.

				LESTAT
		Tomorrow night. You must prove
		yourself. I will give you the
		choice I never had.

	He looks outside.

				LESTAT
		The sun's coming up. Watch it
		carefully. If you come with me
		tomorrow, you'll never see it
		again.

	He leaves. Louis sits dazed, staring at the empty
	French window. The sun rises with unnatural beauty,
	over the swamplands and the plantation, filling the
	room, striking water-pitcher, glass, mirror, and the
	picture of his dead wife.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		My last sunrise. That morning I was
		not yet a vampire, and I saw my
		last sunrise. I remember it
		completely, yet I don't remember
		any sunrise before it. I watched
		the whole magnificence of the dawn
		for the last time, as if it were
		the first. And the I said goodbye
		to sunlight and went out to become
		what I became.


	EXT. PLANTATION - NIGHT

	Lestat and Louis walk through the slave quarters,
	huddles groups around fires, music, singing. The sound
	of whipping is heard.

				LESTAT
		Your grief has unhinged you. You've
		let your estate rot.

	In the woods beyond the quarters, the white overseer is
	whipping a black slave, with horrifying savagery.

				LESTAT
		You let your overseer run riot,
		work your slaves to the bone. We'll
		start with him.

				LOUIS
		How do you mean, start?

				LESTAT
		Call him.

	Louis calls.

				LOUIS
		Carlos!!!

	The overseer turns and comes towards them, with the
	bloodied whip.

				LESTAT
		Why the bloody whip, Carlos?

	The overseer looks into his eyes, shivers with terror,
	drops the whip and runs for the trees. Lestat is on him
	in an instant. He sinks is teeth in his neck. Louis
	runs to him, tries to pull him off. But Lestat turns to
	Louis and smiles, with his bloodied mouth.

				LESTAT
		Let's call that a start.

				LOUIS
		I can't do it.

				LESTAT
		You've just done it -

				LOUIS
		Kill me if you will, but I can't do
		this...

	He flees, as Lestat ends to finish off the overseer.


	EXT. POINTE DU LAC - NIGHT

	Louis running up the steps leading to the gallery. He
	is crazed with guilt. He looks up and sees -


	LESTAT

	Sitting collected at the head of the steps.


	LOUIS

	Backs away as Lestat rises and descends the steps so
	fluidly he hardly seems to move.

				LESTAT
		Don't worry. He was white trash,
		they come at two a penny. I dumped
		him in the swamp and untied the
		slave, licked his wounds clean.

				LOUIS
		You're the devil, aren't you?
		That's who you are.

				LESTAT
			(gently)
		I wish I were. But if I were, what
		would I want with you?

				LOUIS
		I can't go through with it, I tell
		you.

				LESTAT
		Your perfect. Your bitter and
		you're strong.

				LOUIS
		But why do you want me?

				LESTAT
		Because you're as strong as I was
		when I was alive.

	Louis takes out his flask and drinks. Drunkenly, he
	turns and heads for a nearby swamp.


	EXT. CEMETERY - NIGHT

	Louis stops again in front of the crypt. Drinks from
	the flask, leans his forehead against the stone.

	Lestat appears beside him, radiant, beautiful.

				LESTAT
		You really want to be with them?

				LOUIS
		Yes. Kill me. Kill me like you
		promised -

				LESTAT
		You asked for death. I didn't
		promise it -

	In a quiet rage, Lestat raise his fist and shatters the
	marble face stone, revealing a coffin below. His fist
	shatters that in turn, revealing the half-rotted body
	of a women, holding an infant, no longer recognizable
	as individuals, a tangle of gruesome rotted hair,
	flesh, eaten away lace, insects and worms crawling over
	it.

	Louis gasps.

				LESTAT
		It's not your wife and child my
		friend. It's death. Just that
		simple. Think and choose. It
		happens to everyone. Except us.

	Lestat stares at him, smiling, becoming a hazy
	dreamlike vision, then hyperclear. Louis again is
	spellbound. He drops the flask, which shatters on the
	stones.

	Lestat appears angelic in his radiance.

				LESTAT
		We shall be this way always, my
		friend. Young as we are now. I'm
		lonely for a companion, lonely for
		your strength. But I'm not that
		lonely. Do you want to come or not?

	Louis capitulates in one long sigh.

				LOUIS
		Yes...

	Lestat comes closer, smiling.

				LESTAT
		Did I hear a yes?

				LOUIS
		Yes...

	Lestat embraces Louis, obscuring his face. He drinks
	his blood. We hear two heartbeats, out of sync, coming
	together. We see Louis' face, growing paler, paler, as
	his blood is drained. His eyes stare upwards, losing
	their focus.


	LOUIS' POV

	The moon, through hanging vines. The marble statue of
	his wife and child smile at him, as if come alive. Her
	hair blows in the breeze, wonderful gold tresses, the
	child's fingers reach out...


	BACK TO SCENE

	Lestat lets Louis fall down beside the broken crypt.
	Louis looks from the rotting bodies to Lestat above
	him. radiant. Lestat speaks gently.

				LESTAT
		I've drained you to the point of
		death. If you drink from me you
		live for ever. If I leave you here
		you die.

	Lestat lifts his hand to his lips and blows Louis a
	kiss.

				LOUIS
		No. Don't leave me here. Give it to
		me.

	Lestat lifts his own right wrist to his teeth. Fangs
	slash his own flesh, blood falls.

				LESTAT
		You're sure?

				LOUIS
		Sure...

	Louis rises to accept the first drops with his open
	mouth. Lestat gathers him up, as Louis clamps his hand
	on Lestat's arm and drinks from the wrist.

	The VAMPIRE THEME swells.

	Lestat watches him drink his wrist with wry amusement.
	Louis finishes, staggers away from him as if drunk.


	LOUIS' POV

	Vampire vision. The world is transformed, the swamp,
	the moon, the clouds, the cry of the night birds all
	come to him with unnatural clarity. He looks down with
	pity at the corpses of his wife and child who appear
	beautiful in death now rather than repulsive. He closes
	the lid of the coffin and replaces it in the ground,
	astonished at the ease of it.

	He turns and stares at Lestat whom he sees now with
	vampire's vision. Lestat's eyes are brighter, his
	buttons are glimmering in the light. Everything is
	clearer, brighter, containing more facets of light and
	color.

				LESTAT
		Stop staring at my buttons. Didn't
		I tell you it was going to be fun?

	Lestat leads him into the swamp. Everything astonished
	Louis, as if he's never seen it before. Louis is
	suddenly racked by shudders of pain.

				LESTAT
		You're body's dying. Pay no
		attention. It will take twenty
		minutes at most.

				LOUIS
		Dying?

	Louis dry-retches.

				LESTAT
		It happens to us all.

	Lestat wipes Louis' brow.

				LESTAT
		Come, you're going to feed now.

				LOUIS
		I want a woman.

	Lestat laughs and his laughter echoes like bells in
	Louis' ears.

				LESTAT
		That doesn't matter anymore, Louis.
		You'll see. Come...


	LOUIS' VAMPIRE POV - SWAMP

	Small high ground. Camp of runaway slaves. Several
	share a bottle of rum around the fire. A male slave
	rises. A gorgeous hunk of flesh in the moonlight and
	goes into the swamp to relieve his bladder.

				LESTAT
		They're all beautiful now. Men,
		women, the old, the young...simply
		because they are alive. -

	The slave walks towards them in the darkness. A
	crucifix gleams round his neck.

				LESTAT
		Take him.

				LOUIS
		The crucifix -

				LESTAT
		Forget the crucifix. Take him.

	Louis hesitates.

				LESTAT
		Resist no more Louis. Feed...

	The slave looks up and sees them. Two gleaming white
	beings standing before him with devil's eyes. The he
	runs.

	Louis can resist him no more. He swoops on him with a
	vampire's rapid movement, brings him to the ground and
	sinks his teeth in his neck.

	Close on Louis feeding on the slave, the magnificent
	body shuddering in its death-throes. Lestat stands
	above, laughing.

	The slave dies. Louis rises from him, drunkenly,
	engorged with blood.

				LOUIS
		What have I done?

				LESTAT
		You have fed. You were made for
		this...

	Louis looks down at the body of the slave. Lestat's
	laughter echoes around him.

				LOUIS
		Dear God, what have I done?

				LESTAT
		You've killed Louis. And enjoyed
		it.

	Lestat laughs harder. Louis runs from him, screaming in
	anguish.


	EXT. GRAVEYARD - NIGHT

	Louis reaches his wife's grave. He falls to his knees,
	throws back his head and bares his new fangs to the
	moon.

				LOUIS
		Dear God, what have I become????


	INT. ROOM. SAN FRANCISCO - NIGHT

	Malloy stares at Louis, terrified and enthralled.

				MALLOY
		You said the slave had a
		crucifix...

				LOUIS
		Oh, that rumor about crosses?

				MALLOY
		You can't look at them...

				LOUIS
		Nonsense, my friend. I can look on
		anything I like. And I am
		particularly fond of looking on
		crucifixes.

				MALLOY
		The story about stakes through the
		heart?

				LOUIS
		The same. As you would say today...
		Bull shit.

				MALLOY
		What about coffins?

				LOUIS
		Coffins... coffins unfortunately
		are a necessity...


	EXT. MANSION - NIGHT

	Louis walks up the steps to the mansion. He looks now
	like a fully-fledged vampire. Yvette, the slave girl
	stares at him from the open doorway. Cascades of
	harpsichord music come from the interior.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		Killing is no ordinary act. It is
		the experience of another's life
		for certain. That night I had lost
		my own life and taken another's. I
		was drowning in a sea of human
		guilt and regret, with all the
		heightened senses of a vampire...

	Louis enters the mansion, following the harpsichord
	music, as if in a dream. Yvette draws back as he
	approaches.


	INT. MANSION - NIGHT

	Louis wanders into the parlor, where Lestat is playing
	the harpsichord rapidly and exuberantly. Louis goes to
	a full-length mirror and sees his own reflection there
	- quite the perfect vampire.

				LESTAT
		Yes, that's you, my handsome
		friend. And you'll look that way
		till the stars fall from heaven.

				LOUIS
		It can't be...

				LESTAT
		Give it time. You're like a man who
		loses a limb and still imagines he
		feels pain. It will pass. And we
		must sleep now. I can feel the sun
		approaching.


	EXT. POINTE DU LAC

	Dawn spreading over the plantation.


	INT. BASEMENT - POINTE DU LAC

	A brick walled storage room. Two coffins stand on the
	floor. Lestat enters with a lantern, Louis behind.
	Lestat is apprehensive and protective of Louis. He
	pulls back one lid ot reveal a satin interior.

				LESTAT
		You must get into it. It's the only
		safe place for you when the light
		comes.

				LOUIS
		And if I don't?

				LESTAT
		The sun will destroy the blood I've
		given you. Every tissue, every
		vein. The fire in this lantern
		could do that too.

	Louis approaches the coffin, hands trembling as he
	peers into it.

				LESTAT
		Don't be afraid. In moments you'll
		be sleeping as soundly as you ever
		slept. And when you awake I'll be
		waiting for you, and so will all
		the world.

	Louis crawls into the coffin, fearful yet fascinated.

				LOUIS
		You told me something earlier. You
		said you didn't have a choice. Was
		that true?

	Lestat smiles bitterly and nods.

				LESTAT
		Someday I'll tell you. We have a
		lot of time to talk to each other.
		You might say... we have all the
		time we shall ever need.

	He closes the lid.

	Total darkness. Sounds of Louis' panicked breathing. Of
	his prayer again.

				LOUIS
		Dear God, what have I done?


	INT. DINING ROOM - NIGHT

	Louis and Lestat sitting at a sumptuous table, piled
	with uneaten food. Lestat is going through sheafs of
	documents.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		I awoke the next evening to a
		different world. And I realized
		there are as profound differences
		between vampires as between human
		beings...

	Lestat, totting up figures on a piece of paper.

				LESTAT
		Your wealth, dear Louis, is
		inestimable. Your income from
		cotton alone will keep us in
		comfort for a century.

	Louis just stares at him.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		I sat there staring at him with
		contempt. He had the soul of a
		shopkeeper, he was the sow's ear
		out of which nothing fine could be
		made. I felt sadly cheated in
		having him as a teacher...

	Lestat looks up at him and grins.

				LESTAT
		You'll get used to killing. Just
		forget about that mortal coil.
		You'll become accustomed to things
		all too quickly.

				LOUIS
		Do you think so?

	Yvette enters, stands behind him, staring at Lestat
	with loathing.

				YVETTE
		You are not hungry, sir...

				LESTAT
		Au contraire, my dear. He could eat
		a horse...

	Lestat laughs loudly. Louis turns and looks at Yvette.
	Her beautiful forehead in the candlelight, the veins
	pulsing on her neck and her hands.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		I looked at anything mortal and saw
		all life as precious, condemning
		all fruitless guilt and passion
		that would let it slip through the
		fingers like sand...

	Yvette returns his stare, troubled.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		It was only as a vampire that I
		could see Yvette's beauty. Her fear
		of me increased my desire.

	Yvette reaches for his uneaten plate. Louis stops her
	hand. Holds it for a beat too long, looking at the
	veins in her wrist.

				LOUIS
		I will finish it, Yvette. Now leave
		us.

	She turns and runs from the table. Lestat leans towards
	him.

				LESTAT
		Can't you pretend, you fool? Don't
		give the game away. We're lucky to
		have such a home.

	His hand snakes out under the table. It comes up
	holding a large grey rat.

				LESTAT
		Pretend to drink, at least.

	He bares his fangs and slices the rat's throat. He
	pours the blood into a crystal glass.

				LESTAT
		Such fine crystal shouldn't go to
		waste...

	He hands the glass to Louis. Louis drinks the blood and
	stares at it in surprise, then at the dead rat on the
	fine lace tablecloth.

				LESTAT
		I know. It gets cold so fast.

				LOUIS
		We can live like this? Off the
		blood of animals?

	Lestat shrugs.

				LESTAT
		I wouldn't call it living. I'd call
		it surviving. A useful trick if
		you're caught for a month on a ship
		at sea.

	Lestat strokes the belly of the dead rat, studying it
	sadly.

				LESTAT
		There's nothing in the world now
		that doesn't hold some...

				LOUIS
		Fascination...

				LESTAT
		Yes. And I'm bored with this
		prattle -

	He throws the rat away.

				LOUIS
		But we can live without taking
		human life. It's possible.

				LESTAT
		Anything is possible. But just try
		it for a week. Come into New
		Orleans and let me show you some
		real sport!

	He rises. Louis follows.


	EXT. NEW ORLEANS - NIGHT

	A big, lavish drinking place with a raised stage.

	Italian actors in buffoonish costumes act crude
	commedia dell'arte on the stage.

	Plantation owners in soiled brocade, lace, crooked wigs
	watch the show as tavern wenches move about.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		This was New Orleans, a magical and
		magnificent place to live. In which
		a vampire, richly dressed might
		attract no more notice in the
		evening than hundreds of other
		exotic creatures.

	Louis and Lestat by a table, in the shadow of a tree.
	Teresa, a tavern wench, sits on Lestat's lap, pouring
	drinks for the two of them. She lifts a fresh glass to
	Lestat's lips as he flirts with her.

				TERESA
		Come on, mon cher. The best in the
		colony. Once you touch this you'll
		never go to any other tavern again.

				LESTAT
		You think so, cherie? But what if
		I'd rather taste your lips?

				TERESA
		My lips are even sweeter still...

	She kisses him. He lets his tongue play with hers, then
	runs it down her neck. She swoons with pleasure. Then
	he sinks his teeth gently in her neck, looking
	playfully behind at Louis, who if appalled and
	fascinated.


	ANTICS ON THE STAGE

	Laughter rocks the tavern.

	Lestat slips the pale and dead Teresa into a chair
	beside him and folds her hands on the table. No one
	notices. He lays gold coins on the table and touches
	Louis' knee.

				LESTAT
		Let's get out of here!

	Lestat rushes out, thrilled with himself.


	EXT. TAVERN - NIGHT

	A crowded street. Louis and Lestat emerge from the
	tavern. Louis looks up at the moon.

				LOUIS
		Have you ever been caught?

				LESTAT
		Of course not. It's so easy you
		almost feel sorry for them.

	They walk down the crowded night street, full of ladies
	in their finery, freed slaves, whores, sailors etc.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		Lestat killed two, sometimes three
		a night. A fresh young girl, that
		was his favorite for the first of
		the evening.


	INT. FRENCH QUARTER MANSION - BALLROOM

	Small orchestra plays for colonial couples in fine wig
	and garb prancing to a French minuet. Young women sit
	in chairs along the walls with their chaperones. Young
	men stand opposite.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		But the triumphant kill of Lestat
		was a young man. They represented
		the greatest loss to Lestat because
		they stood on the threshold of the
		maximum possibility of life.

	A youth of preternatural beauty, silhouetted against
	French windows. He is talking to an elegant widow,
	seated, holding two manicured poodles. Lestat stares at
	the youth with longing.

				LESTAT
		The trick is not to think about it.
		See that one? The widow St. Clair?
		she had that gorgeous young fop
		murder her husband. She's perfect
		for you. Go ahead.

				LOUIS
		But how do you know?

				LESTAT
		Read her thoughts.

				LOUIS
		I can't.

				LESTAT
		The dark gift is different for each
		of us. But one thing is true of
		everyone. We grow stronger as we go
		along.

	He leads Louis closer to them.

				LESTAT
		Take my word for it. She blamed a
		slave for his murder. And do you
		know what they did to him?

	He smiles at the young man, who smiles in return.

				LESTAT
		The evildoers are easier. And they
		taste better...


	EXT. LAWNS - NIGHT

	Lestat walks the youth towards a copse of trees. He
	looks back at Louis, who holds both poodles on a
	delicate leash, walking with the widow. The minuet
	spills from the french windows.

				WIDOW ST. CLAIR
		Now, young man, you really amaze
		me! I'm old enough to be your
		grandmother.

	She leans towards him concquettishly. Louis, crazed
	with hunger, sees her as beautiful in the moonlight. He
	allows her lips reach his. He takes her in his arms,
	gently, romantically, and sinks in his teeth. She
	swoons.

				WIDOW ST. CLAIR
		Yes, that's the melody, I remember
		it. Oh yes...

	Louis draws his lips away. She is weak in his arms, but
	still alive. He can't do it. The poodles growl. He
	shoots out an arm and grabs one, then the other.


	EXT. TREES - NIGHT

	Lestat, bending over the body of the dead youth. A
	scream pierces the night.

				WIDOW ST CLAIR
		Murder!!! Murderer!!


	EXT. LAWNS. NIGHT

	The widow on the grass, her poodles dead beside her.
	Louis is trying to quiet her.

				WIDOW ST CLAIR
		My little papillions! My
		butterflies!!! He killed them!!!

	Lestat comes from nowhere, claps a hand over her mouth
	and breaks her neck. He spits in fury at Louis.

				LESTAT
		You whining coward of a vampire who
		prowls the night killing rats and
		poodles. You could have finished us
		both!
		
	Louis throws himself on Lestat with extraordinary
	force, pummeling him towards the trees.

				LOUIS
		What have you done to me? You've
		condemned me to hell.

				LESTAT
		I don't know any hell -

	Louis hurls him against tree after tree with a strength
	he never knew he had.

				LOUIS
		You want to see me kill? Watch me
		kill you then -

	He drags him to the ground an throttles him. Lestat
	looks up at him, amazed and amused at the same time.

				LESTAT
		What strength, my friend, what
		strength. I remember why I chose
		you now.

	Lestat squirms from his grip, seemingly effortlessly.

				LESTAT
		But you can't kill me, Louis. Nor I
		you.

	He ruffles Louis' hair, with wry affection.

				LESTAT
		Feed on what you want, mon cherie.
		Rats, chickens, doves, goats. I'll
		leave you to it and watch you come
		round. Just remember, life without
		me would be even more unbearable...

	He smiles. A sly, pleasurable secret secret smile.


	EXT. POINTE DU LAC - NIGHT

	Their carriage draws up to the mansion as the first
	fingers of light spread across the sky.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		Being a vampire to him meant
		revenge. Revenge against life-
		itself. Every time he took a life
		it was revenge. and the slaves with
		a wisdom that was denied their
		masters, began to notice...


	INT. SLAVE-HUT - NIGHT

	In a tiny cabin, a slave family. Kids sleeping on the
	floor, in cribs and cots. The parents sleep on the bed,
	young, beautiful, naked. Beside them is Lestat, who is
	drinking the husband's blood, his hand playing across
	the breast of the wife as he does so. She murmurs in
	her sleep.

				WIFE
		Yes... please...

	She grabs his fingers and kisses them, thinking him to
	be her husband. Lestat gently disengages himself and
	leaves.


	EXT. SLAVE-HUT - NIGHT

	The woman's scream pierces the sky, as Lestat walks
	into the night.


	EXT. CHICKEN-COOP - NIGHT

	Every chicken is dead, bloodies necks hanging down from
	the cribs. Louis emerges from the entrance, blood on
	his lips. He hears the scream.


	EXT. SLAVE QUARTER - NIGHT

	The sound of drumming is heard, African, primal. The
	woman runs through the quarters, screaming grief.
	Others gather at doorways, restrain and console her.


	EXT. DOVE-COTE - DAY

	A beautiful, elaborate eighteenth century dove-cote.
	Every dove inside is dead, pierced at the neck. A black
	hand throws in a flaming torch and it bursts into
	flame.


	INT. CABIN - NIGHT

	A doll, made in the image of Lestat, is pierced with
	needles.


	EXT. SWAMP BY FIELDS - DAY

	Bodies of slaves floating in the swamp, with the bodies
	of goats. Slaves at the edge throw ropes around the
	bodies, pull them towards the shore. The drumming grows
	louder.


	EXT. SLAVE-QUARTERS - NIGHT

	Louis walking through. The slaves hush as he
	approaches, gather in doorways and whisper. He turns
	and looks at them, sorrowfully. He looks truly like a
	ghost. Their eyes turn away when they meet his. He
	walks on.


	INT. DINING ROOM IN MANSION - NIGHT

	Lestat and Louis sit at the table, the untouched food
	between them.

				LESTAT
		Consider yourself lucky. In Paris a
		vampire has to be clever for many
		reasons. Here all one needs is a
		pair of fangs.

				LOUIS
		Paris? You came from Paris?

				LESTAT
		As did the one who made me.

				LOUIS
		Tell me about him. You must have
		learnt something from him! It had
		to happen for you as it did for me!

				LESTAT
		I learnt absolutely nothing. I
		wasn't give a choice, remember?

				LOUIS
		But you must know something about
		the meaning of it all, you must
		know where we come from, why we...

	Lestat spits out in anger.

				LESTAT
		Why? Why should I know these
		things? Do you know them?

	The drumming grows outside.

				LESTAT
			(gripping his temples)
		That noise! It's driving me mad!
		We've been in the country for
		weeks, with nothing but that
		noise!!!

				LOUIS
		They know about us. They see us
		dine on empty plates and drink from
		empty glasses.

				LESTAT
		Come the New Orleans then. There's
		an opera on tonight. A real french
		opera! We can dine in splendor!

				LOUIS
		I respect life, don't you see? For
		each and every human life I have
		respect.

				LESTAT
		Respect me a little then. I'm the
		only life you know.

	Louis stares. Lestat turns childishly, petulantly.

				LESTAT
		You'll soon run out of chickens,
		Louis...

	He walks out, humming a French aria. Louis stares at
	his plate.


	EXT. SLAVE QUARTERS - NIGHT

	The slaves, gathered on mass around fires. Frenzied
	drumming, dancing. Lestat rides through, scattering the
	flames. The drumming stops. The slaves look towards the
	house. Slowly, they begin to move towards it.


	INT. POINTE DU LAC DINING ROOM - NIGHT

	Louis, sitting in despair by the table. Yvette, the
	slave girl enters.

				YVETTE
		Michi Louis? You don't want any
		supper?

	Louis laughs harshly.

				LOUIS
		No, ma cher. I need no supper. Is
		all well at Pointe Du Lac tonight?

	Yvette draws closer. Light reveals her beauty.

				YVETTE
		We worry about you master. When do
		you ride about the fields? How long
		since you've been to the slave
		quarters? Everywhere there is
		death. Animals, men. Are you our
		master still at all?

	Louis watches her sadly. He's getting hungry. Her
	throat is long and slender, her breasts are gorgeous.

				LOUIS
			(dazed)
		Leave me alone now, Yvette.

				YVETTE
		I will not go unless you listen to
		me. Send away this new friend of
		yours. The slaves are frightened of
		him. They are frightened of you.

	She comes closer, and he can hear her beating heart.
	She touches his hair. He takes her hand and brings it
	to his lips.

				LOUIS
		I am frightened of myself, Yvette.

	He kisses her wrist. She suddenly gasps, sharply,
	withdraws her hand. She sees her wrist is red with
	blood. She sees the blood on his lips. She screams.

	Louis stands.

				LOUIS
		Hush, Yvette -

	She screams even louder. Louis clamps his hand over her
	mouth. Her hand grips the table-cloth, pulls, bringing
	the empty glasses and crockery to the floor.

	In horror, Louis realizes he has broken her neck. He
	brings her cut wrist to his lips, then drops it,
	revolted. He carries her body outside, grief-stricken.

	The drumming grows louder.


	EXT. MANSION - NIGHT

	Fires burning in the distance, round the slave-cabins.
	The slaves are gathered at the foot of the mansion
	steps. They see Louis come out, holding the body of
	Yvette. He is deranged with grief.

				LOUIS
		This place is cursed. Damned, do
		you hear me? And your master is the
		devil.

	He places the body of Yvette in a rocking chair on the
	veranda.

				LOUIS
		Get out while you can. You're free
		men.

	They don't move. They stare at him blankly.

				LOUIS
		Unlike me, you are no free men...

	He turns behind him, and looks at the mansion, all
	candelabra and chandeliers lighted, all windows open.

				LOUIS
		Do I have to convince you?

	He rushed up the stairs, snatches up the candelabra and
	sets fire to the drapes. He goes from window to window,
	lighting drapes, lace curtains, everything.


	SLAVES POV - MASTER

	Setting fire to the house.

	They rush up the stairs with shouts of "STOP HIM, HE'S
	MAD". A wall of flame gushes out from the interior,
	blocking their way.


	INT. BURNING MANSION - NIGHT

	Louis, wandering from room to room of the burning
	mansion. he sees paintings of his wife consumed by the
	flames. He is weakening with the fumes, the heat. We
	can see this in his face, the texture of his skin.

	Suddenly a large french window cascades inwards and
	Lestat stands there, whip in hand. Behind him we can
	see the morning sky.

				LESTAT
		You fool, what have you done?

				LOUIS
		What you wouldn't do. It's almost
		sunrise. It will be the sun or the
		fire. You said they can kill me.
		The sun or the fire!

	Louis stands there, weakened, then collapses onto the
	floor. Lestat darts forward and catches him before he
	drops. He runs out the shattered window, carrying him
	on his shoulder.


	EXT. LARGE GRAVEYARD - DAWN

	With many crypts. Louis, unconscious, carried over
	Lestat's shoulder.


	INT. CRYPT

	Darkness. Louis lying on the floor of a large crypt. He
	slowly comes to.

				LOUIS
		Where are we?

				LESTAT
		Where do you think, my idiot
		friend? We're in a nice filthy
		cemetery. Does this make you happy?
		Is this fitting and proper enough?

	Louis laughs softly.

				LOUIS
		We belong in hell.

				LESTAT
		And what if there is no hell, or
		they don't want us there? Ever
		think of that?


	INT. ROOM. SAN FRANCISCO - NIGHT

	The vampire sits in silence, as if tired by his story.
	Malloy speaks, hesitantly.

				MALLOY
		You loved Yvette...

				LOUIS
		Can a vampire feel love?

				MALLOY
		You loved your wife, surely.

				LOUIS
		I was human then. Might as well ask
		can an angel feel love. Both are
		blesses or cursed with a certain...
		detachment. Though whether angels
		take as long to learn it as I, I
		will never know.

	He looks directly at Malloy, shocking him with his
	gaze.

				LOUIS
		Yes, I loved Yvette. As I loved
		Pointe Du Lac. And as with each
		thing I loved, I destroyed it.


	EXT. NEW ORLEANS - EVENING

	From the sea, at evening, shrouded in mist.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		Lestat I did not love. And he
		survived.


	INT. INN - EVENING

	A lavish little supper chamber with coffered bed, fancy
	French furniture. Open to rooftops of colonial city.
	Louis sits by an open window looking out over the city.
	Behind, we can hear the laughter of Lestat and tow
	female voices. Louis turns and sees -

	Lestat, in the main chamber with two drugged or drunked
	whores. One runs her finger down his chest. The other
	seems out of it.

				WHORE #1
		You're skin's icy.

				LESTAT
		Not always...

	He presses his thumb on her neck and holds her tight,
	sinking his teeth into her neck. After a time she falls
	to the bed, dead. he turns to the other.

				LESTAT
		Your friend has no head for wine.

				WHORE
		She's stupid. I can warm that cold
		skin of yours better than she can.

				LESTAT
		Do you think so?

	He rubs her breast.

				WHORE
		Why you're warm now.

				LESTAT
		Ah, but the price is pretty high.
		Your sweet friend - I exhausted
		her.

	He bites her in turn, drinks her blood. She does into
	the swoon.

	Louis looks on in disgust. He stands.

				LOUIS
		I'm leaving you. I can't stand this
		any longer.

	Lestat pulls away from the whore.

				LESTAT
		What, no flowery speeches? About
		what a monster I am? What a vulgar
		fiend?

				LOUIS
		I'm not interested in you. You
		disgust me. I'm interested in my
		own nature and know I can't trust
		you to tell me the truth about me.

				LESTAT
		What do you imagine you are Louis?

				LOUIS
		I don't pretend to know.

				LESTAT
		Don't you understand, Louis, that
		you alone of all creatures can see
		death with impunity... you alone
		under the rising moon can strike
		like the hand of God.

	The girl moans.

				LOUIS
		Lestat, she's alive!!!

				LESTAT
		Vampires are killers. Predators,
		who's all seeing eyes were meant to
		give them detachment.

	The girl moans again, open her eyes.

				LOUIS
		The girl, Lestat -

				LESTAT
		I know. Let her alone.

	He slashes her wrist with his teeth, and lets the blood
	drip into a glass.

				LESTAT
		You think you can be human. You
		think you can go back. But you
		can't. You live off the blood of
		rats now Louis. How human is that?

	The girls moans again. Lestat drinks that glass.

				LESTAT
		Lie still, love...

	The girl begins to scream. Lestat picks her up.

				LESTAT
		You're tired love, you want to
		sleep.

	He walks to his coffin, puts her inside and sits on the
	lid. We hear muffled screaming and banging from inside.

				LOUIS
		Why do you do this Lestat?

				LESTAT
		I like to do it. I enjoy it. Take
		you aesthete's taste to purer
		things. Kill them swiftly if you
		will, but do it! For now doubt, you
		are a killer Louis. Ah!

	He stands up. The girl pushes the lid off, hysterical.
	She looks at Louis.

				GIRL
		It's a coffin, a coffin! Get me
		out!

				LESTAT
		Of course it's a coffin. You're
		dead, love.

	Louis screams at Lestat

				LOUIS
		Lestat - finish this -

				LESTAT
		You finish her - if you feel so
		much -

	The girl grabs Louis and pleads.

				GIRL
		You won't let me die, will you?
		You'll save me?

				LESTAT
		But it's too late, love. Look at
		your wrist, you breast.

	He picks her up again. He turns to Louis laughing.

				LESTAT
		Unless I make her one of us...

				LOUIS
		NO!!!

				LESTAT
		THEN YOU KILL HER!!!!!

	The girl screams. Louis puts his hands to his ears.
	Then Lestat, in a fit of pique puts his teeth to her
	neck. She dies at last.

	A terrible silence descends. Lestat looks at Louis.

				LOUIS
		My God... to think you... are all I
		have to learn from...

				LESTAT
		In the old world, they called it
		the dark gift, Louis. And I gave it
		to you.

	Louis leaves without a word.


	EXT. DANK NEW ORLEANS BACK STREETS - NIGHT

	A rat scurried down a gutter, then another and another.
	Louis' hand grabs the rat. We see him from behind,
	walking down the street, gripping one, then another.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		Am I damned? Am I from the devil?
		Is my very nature that of a devil?
		And all the while, as these dreaded
		questions caused me to neglect my
		thirst, my thirst grew hotter, my
		veins were threads of pain in my
		flesh, my temples throbbed.

	A smaller side street, in which every house is marked
	with an X. The street is crawling with rats, and Louis
	is following them. A man passes with a lantern.

				MAN
		Don't go that way Monsieur. It's
		the plague. Go back the way you
		came.

	Louis smiles bitterly at these words, repeating them to
	himself.

				LOUIS
		The way I came...

	He walks on, following the rats.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		... and finally, when I could stand
		it no longer, I stood in an empty
		desolate street and heard the sound
		of a child crying.

	A house, the door slightly open, marked with an X. The
	sound of a child crying inside. Louis walks towards it.


	INT. HOUSE - NIGHT

	A little girl, pulling at a figure in a rocking chair.

				CLAUDIA
		Mama, please wake up. Mama, I'm
		frightened, please wake up.

	As Louis enters, he sees the woman is dead. Her eyes
	are being eaten away by rats.

	Louis gasps in horror. Claudia turns. She is a radiant
	doll or angel as she stretches out her hand to Louis.

				CLAUDIA
		Monsieur, please help us. Papa's
		waiting for us at the ship. Please
		wake mama, Monsieur.

	She runs to him. Instinctively, he gathers her in his
	arms. He looks down pitying on her beautiful face.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		And if I am damned, why do I fell
		such pity for her gaunt face? Why
		do I wish to warm her tiny arms?
		Comfort her beating heart?

	She snuggles into him, suddenly utterly secure. She
	tugs at his hair, brings his head down towards her. And
	we see Louis shiver, as his lips go to her neck.

	Her breathing becomes calm as she goes into the swoon.
	Gradually another sound replaces it.

	LESTAT'S LAUGHTER, GROWING LOUDER AND LOUDER.

	Suddenly Louis backs away, caught red-handed, the child
	in his arms. He sees Lestat slapping his knee and
	laughing in the doorway.

				LESTAT
		Ah, my philosopher, my martyr.
		"Never take a human life". Well you
		must admit it is funny. Or is it
		merely touching? I'm not sure.

	Louis stares at the unconscious Claudia in horror, then
	lets her slip gently into a chair. Shamefully he wipes
	his mouth, sees the tiny wounds on her throat.

	Lestat snatches up the dead mother from the chair and
	begins to dance with her in great circles, humming and
	talking. Her head falls back. Black water flows from
	her mouth.

				LESTAT
		Let's make some party of it, shall
		we? Maybe there's some life in the
		old lady yet?

	Louis flees into the street.

				LESTAT
		Come back, Louis, you are what you
		are. The plague would have got her
		within hours anyway. Merciful Death
		how you love your precious guilt.


	EXT. STREETS - NIGHT

	Louis running through an assortment of streets. All the
	night life of New Orleans flows by him.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		For years I had not savored a
		human. And when I had Lestat's
		words made sense to me. I knew
		peace only when I killed and when I
		heard her heart in that terrible
		rhythm I knew again what peace
		could be. Yet even then I could not
		contenance it...


	EXT. WATERFRONT - DAWN

	Fingers of light in the sky. Louis, pale and shivering,
	walks splashing through the water. He comes to a huge
	sewer-pipe, crowded with rats. He crawls inside.


	EXT. WATERFRONT - SOME EVENINGS LATER

	The same sewer-pipe. Now the bodies of dead rats lie
	all around. A pair of fine leather boots splash through
	the water - Lestat's.


	INT. SEWER-PIPE - EVENING

	Louis huddled there, so pale and shivering he seems
	close to death. Lestat comes through.

				LESTAT
		All I need to find you Louis is
		follow the corpses of rats.

	He bends down to him, surprisingly gently and puts his
	own coat around him.

				LESTAT
		Pain is terrible for you. You feel
		it like no other creature because
		you are a vampire. You don't want
		it to go on.

				LOUIS
		No...

	They emerge from the sewer and walk along the
	waterfront.

				LESTAT
		Do what it is in your nature to do.
		And you will feel as you felt with
		that child in your arms.

				LOUIS
		Oh God Lestat. I felt peace. I felt
		an end to the craving.

				LESTAT
		That and more.

	He puts his arm around Louis, to stop his shivering.

				LESTAT
		Evil is a point of view. God kills,
		indiscriminately, and so shall we.
		For no creatures under God are as
		we are, none so like him as
		ourselves.

				LOUIS
		Is God merciless? Greedy and cruel?

				LESTAT
		Ah, but we have even more in common
		with our creator. come, I am like a
		mother tonight. I want a child.

	Louis is baffled. He follows.


	INT. INN - SUPPER ROOM

	Lestat enters.

				LESTAT
		She's here, your wounded one.

				LOUIS
		What are you saying?

				LESTAT
		You need company, Louis. More
		congenial than mine...

	Lestat holds up a candle and walks towards a large four-
	poster bed. Claudia lies there, angelic, under the
	coverlet, two marks on her neck.

				LOUIS
		Lestat!

				LESTAT
		You remember how you wanted her,
		the taste of her -

				LOUIS
		I didn't want to kill her.

				LESTAT
		Don't worry, Louis, you're
		conscience is clear. You left her
		alive.

	Lestat shakes her gently.

				LESTAT
		Claudia, Claudia, listen to me.
		You're ill, my precious and I'm
		going to give you what you need to
		get well.

				LOUIS
		Lestat, what do you mean?

	Louis runs at him, but Lestat brushes him aside
	effortlessly, so he falls to the floor. Lestat bites
	his wrist and presses the bleeding wound to the child's
	mouth... He winces in pain.

				LESTAT
		That's it dear. More. You must
		drink it to get well.

	Claudia sucks on the wound, reviving, making little
	noises like a person waking from sleep.

	Louis rises to his feet as Claudia clutches Lestat's
	arm, sucking the blood fiercely. Lestat moans.

				LESTAT
		Stop, that's enough. No more.

	He pulls her loose and she growls and stares at him
	with big clear astonished eyes.

				CLAUDIA
		I want more.

				LOUIS
		What have you done?

	Lestat puts her down on the bed and sits beside her,
	holding his wrist, obviously in pain.

				CLAUDIA
		More.

				LESTAT
		Yes, cherie, of course you want
		more. And I'll show you how to get
		it. You drink from morals, my
		beauty, but from me? Never again.

	Still suffering, Lestat pulls the bell-rope.


	CLOSE ON CLAUDIA

	Being transformed. Becoming white yet robust, bright-
	eyed yet crazed. She shakes her beautiful curls and the
	dust falls from them. They are shining in the
	candlelight.

	Louis cannot stop looking at her. He does not notices
	as -

	The MAID enters.

				MAID
		Ah, quelle Belle enfant!

	The maid comes near the bed, kneels in front of
	Claudia. Lestat lays his hand on the maid's throat and
	Claudia watches keenly.

				LESTAT
		Gently, cherie. They are so
		innocent. They must not be made to
		suffer.

	Claudia lunges for the throbbing vein in the neck,
	locking on to the flowing blood.

	The Maid is transfixed.

	Close on Louis, his anguish, his fascinated horror.

				LOUIS
		You are the devil! You are the
		instrument of Satan!

				LESTAT
		That's enough, cherie. Stop before
		the heart stops.

	He lets the dead maid onto the floor. Claudia looks at
	the corpse.

				CLAUDIA
		I want some more.

				LESTAT
		It's bet in the beginning, lest the
		death takes you down with it. yes,
		that's it. My child. My beloved
		child.

	Lestat and Claudia sit on the Louis XVI settee. Claudia
	is a vision, a doll made out of pearl. Animated, voice
	crisp.

				CLAUDIA
		Where is Mamma?

	The words echo in Louis' head, as he puts his hands to
	his ears.

				LESTAT
		Mamma's gone to Heaven, cherie,
		like that sweet lady over there.
		They all go to Heaven. And you did
		very well, cherie. Not a drop
		spilt. Very good! You're going to
		be our child now.

	Lestat takes out his comb and begins to comb her hair.

				LESTAT
		Your mama's left you with us. She
		wants you to be happy.

				LOUIS
			(whispers)
		You are the devil! You are the
		instrument of Satan!

				LESTAT
		Shhhh! Do you want to frighten our
		little daughter?

				CLAUDIA
		I'm not your daughter.

				LESTAT
		Yes you are, my dearest. You are
		mine and Louis' daughter. You see
		Louis was going to leave us. He was
		going to go away. But now he's not.
		He's going to stay and make you
		happy.

	Claudia runs over to him. She smiles at him.

				CLAUDIA
		Lou...eee...

	Louis is conflicted. He cannot leave her. He touches
	her cheeks, her hair. Same as his. Vampire skin and
	hair. He draws in his breath, shocked by her beauty,
	then he embraces her as a father might a daughter. He
	looks over her shoulder to Lestat.

				LOUIS
		You fiend. You monster.

	Lestat smiles

				LESTAT
		One happy family.


	INT. ROOM - SAN FRANCISCO

	Malloy is open mouthed.

				MALLOY
		A child vampire!

	He sees the tape has run out. He rapidly and clumsily
	sticks in another.

				LOUIS
		Shall we go on?

				MALLOY
		He did it to make you stay with
		him!

				LOUIS
		Perhaps. He knew me. He knew I
		would love her more than the waking
		world. But there was more to it
		than that. Perhaps in the end he
		did it - to show me that he could.
		For he lavished affection on her,
		there was no doubt about that. Life
		was very different with madame
		Claudia, as you can imagine...


	EXT. NEW SPANISH TOWNHOUSE - (RUE ROYALE, NEW ORLEANS)

	Two husky movers bring in furniture through the back
	courtyard, past the fountain and the banana trees, up
	the back stairs and into -


	INT. FLAT

	Striped wallpaper gives way to flowers in the bedrooms.
	Huge four-poster beds in the bedrooms, and large
	chests, as big as coffins standing against the wall.
	Everywhere there are candles and pretty Louis XVI
	furniture. Lestat gives instructions to the movers.


	WE MOVE INTO A DIMLY LIT PARLOUR

	We see Claudia draped in lace standing on a petit point
	chair as a DRESSMAKER measure out a garment.

	Louis can be seen, in an inner room.

				DRESSMAKER
		Monsieur, I need more light. I
		shall go slind if you do not bring
		me a lamp, or let me fit this child
		during the day. Ouch!

	She has pricked her hand. A spot of blood appears on
	her finger Claudia takes her hand.

				CLAUDIA
		Let me kiss it better...

	Claudia brings the hand to her lips. The dressmaker
	abruptly pulls her finger away, in pain again.

	CLOSEUP - her finger, two holes showing.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		A little child she was, but also a
		fierce killer, now capable of the
		ruthless pursuit of blood with all
		a child's demanding.

	Lestat walks through - sees the dressmaker lying dead
	at Claudia's feet, Claudia still on the chair in the
	half-finished dress.

				LESTAT
		Claudia, Claudia, will you never
		learn? Who will we get now to
		finish your dress? A little
		practicality, cherie...


	INT. LOUIS' BEDROOM - NIGHT

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		She would sleep in my coffin,
		daily, curl her child's fingers
		round my hair as she dreamt of I
		know not what...
		
	Claudia and Louis, sleeping in a coffin together,
	Claudia's fingers curling his hair.


	INT. CLAUDIA'S BEDROOM

	Claudia playing with dolls, each as perfect and
	beautifully dressed as she is.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		Mute and beautiful, she played with
		dolls, dressing them and undressing
		them by the hour.


	INT. PARLOUR - NIGHT

	Claudia tinkling with her child's hands on the piano,
	picking out a hesitant tune.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		Mute and beautiful, she killed. And
		to watch her kill was chilling.


	EXT. SQUARE - NIGHT

	The tinkling of Claudia's piano is heard, over -

	A well-dressed lady, walking through a square lit by
	gaslight. The lady hears a child's sobbing and stops,
	turns.


	POV

	Claudia, the picture of lost innocence, sitting on a
	bench and crying.

				WOMAN
		Why are you crying, child?

	The woman, all solicitude, goes to Claudia.

				WOMAN
		Are you lost, my love?

				CLAUDIA
		Mama...

				WOMAN
		Hush now, don't cry, We'll find
		her...

				CLAUDIA
		Mama...

	The woman takes Claudia in her arms. Claudia nestles
	her head in her shoulder, her teeth near her neck.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		They found death fast in those
		days, before she learnt to play
		with the, to delay the moment till
		she had taken what she wanted...


	INT. PARLOUR - NIGHT

	A stern, stiff PIANO-TEACHER (male) beating time with a
	ruler as Claudia picks out scales on the piano. He raps
	her on the knuckles.

				PIANO-TEACHER
		The thumb girl! Mind the thumb!

	Claudia glares at him, then returns to playing,
	improving rapidly.


	INT. DOLL-SHOP - NIGHT

	Piano music over. Mozart, now well played.

	Claudia staring at a glass case, inside of which are an
	array of eighteenth century dolls. An old DOLLMAKER
	looks down on her.

				DOLLMAKER
		They are expensive, my dear. Maybe
		too expensive for a young girl like
		you...


	EXT. STREET - NIGHT

	Claudia walking along, clutching the doll.


	INT. DOLL-SHOP - NIGHT

	The dollmaker lying dead, two puncture marks in his
	throat, his dolls scattered all around him.


	EXT. UNDERTAKER'S - NIGHT

	Claudia and Louis looking through the window at a
	display of coffins. Claudia point at the smallest one.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		She grew, yet stayed the same. She
		wanted a bed of her own, yet would
		climb back into mine.


	INT. CLAUDIA'S BEDROOM - NIGHT

	The child's coffin on the floor. The lid lifts. Claudia
	emerges, yawning, wanders through the flat into -


	LOUIS' BEDROOM

	Where his coffin sits. She slides the lid off, and
	curls in beside him.


	INT. PARLOUR - NIGHT

	Claudia playing the piano, now with remarkable
	dexterity. The piano-teacher sits mute beside her. As
	she plays, he topples over and falls to the ground. We
	see the puncture-marks in his neck. Lestat, hearing the
	noise, comes in.

				LESTAT
		Claudia, Claudia! Didn't I tell
		you, never in the house!

	Claudia smiles to herself, keeps playing.


	INT. CLAUDIA'S BEDROOM - NIGHT

	CANARIES sing in a cage, above a child's coffin.

	Claudia is writing at a secretaire. She is writing in a
	diary with a quill pen in an adult hand. She murmurs
	the date as she writes.

				CLAUDIA
		September 21st, one hour after
		sunset. The sky is still violet,
		the way Louis loves and as always
		Lestat was gone when we rose.

	She looks up and sees Louis in the doorway, watching
	her.

				LOUIS
		How did you learn to write,
		Claudia?

				CLAUDIA
		The way I learn everything. By
		watching you.

	She closes the diary.

				CLAUDIA
		But you never let me see you kill,
		Louis.

				LOUIS
		Lestat taught you all you need to
		know about that.

				CLAUDIA
		Infant death, he calls me. Sweet
		daughter death. You know what he
		calls you? Merciful death.

				LOUIS
		He jests.

				CLAUDIA
		Why does he call you that?

				LOUIS
		Hush, Claudia don't talk about such
		things. Show me your book.

	She opens it. Inside there is a beautiful pen and ink
	portrait of Louis.

				LOUIS
		Claudia! You did that?

				CLAUDIA
		Sit still. It's not finished -

	She begins to fill in the sketch.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		Time can pass fast for mortals when
		they're happy. With us it was the
		same.


	EXT. RUE ROYALE - NIGHT (1800'S)

	Street lamps are oil at this period. Houses are now
	tall two-story Spanish style. Streets are flagstone.
	Passing carriages are black.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		It was a very different life. And a
		new century was beginning. what had
		once been a small godforsaken
		French colony was growing into a
		great port, giving us an endless
		train of magnificent strangers...

	Claudia, Louis and Lestat, dressed in the same clothes
	walking through a raucous carnival with sideshows.
	Crowd milling around, sailors, whores, children,
	thieves, freed slaves, Indians. They pass a Wild West
	display, jugglers, fire-eaters, three-card
	tricksters...

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		All human life was here, for the
		taking. And we took, all three of
		us, in our different ways...

	They come to a raised platform where a troupe of
	perfectly-formed midgets do a burlesque show.

	Claudia stops. She stares, at these small, perfect
	creatures like herself, intrigued and troubled.

	Louis and Lestat walk on, not noticing as -


	CLAUDIA

	Circles the troupe. She comes to a small tent, behind
	it. At the entrance stands a midget youth.

				YOUTH
		You want to come inside, lovely?

	Claudia walks up to him.

				YOUTH
		Ever been kissed?

	Claudia shakes her head. He kisses her. Claudia allow
	her to be kissed, then bites his tongue. he youth
	struggles, as Claudia holds him and drains him. She
	lets him go as Louis appears behind her.

				CLAUDIA
		She's like me, Louis. Small and yet
		not small at all. Like me.

	Louis hurriedly draws her away.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		I watched her grow yet stay the
		same, her doll-like face possessed
		of adult eyes, eerie, powerful,
		seductive...


	INT. FLAT - NIGHT

	Claudia playing the piano, now like a demonic Liszt.
	Louis writing.

	Lestat appears in the doorway. He has a big box in his
	arms.

				CLAUDIA
		Another doll? I have ten, you
		realize.

	FOCUS ON early 19th Century French dolls - wood, glass,
	wax, bisque - all around the bedroom, on chairs, on the
	bed. Some newish, some tattered old.

				LESTAT
		Well, I thought you could use
		another.

	He hands her the box. It is a fine Parisian Jumeau
	doll. She likes it and stokes its face.

				CLAUDIA
		Why always on this night?

				LESTAT
		What night? What do you mean?

				CLAUDIA
		You always give me the doll on the
		same night of the year.

				LESTAT
		I didn't realize.

				CLAUDIA
		Is this my birthday?

	He examines the other dolls.

				LESTAT
		Some of these are so old and
		tattered. You should throw them
		away.

				CLAUDIA
		I have. Or there would be twice as
		many.

				LESTAT
		But you're the fairest by far.

				CLAUDIA
		You dress me like a doll. You make
		my hair like a doll. Why?

	Lestat doesn't answer. Claudia stands up quickly, and
	strides out into the -


	PARLOUR

	Where Louis is reading by the window. She walks to a
	mirrored cabinet, takes out a scissors and begins
	cutting her hair.

				CLAUDIA
		You want me to be a doll forever?

				LOUIS
		Claudia - don't -

				CLAUDIA
		Why not?

	She continues cutting. She sees Lestat emerge from her
	bedroom in the mirror behind her then turns to him, an
	angelic little boy's face now with soft curls around
	her face.

				CLAUDIA
		Can't I change, like everybody
		else?

	She walks past him, back into her bedroom and slams the
	door.

	A beat. Louis looks from the mass of blonde hair on the
	floor to Lestat. Then a HORRID SCREAM pierces the
	silence. More screams, which become roars.


	INT. CLAUDIA'S BEDROOM

	She stands before the dressing-table, all her long hair
	grown back over her shoulders. She holds it with both
	hands, screaming and screaming. Lestat and Louis come
	through the door.

				CLAUDIA
		Which of you did it? Which of you
		made me the way I am?

				LESTAT
		What you are? You would be
		something other than you are?

				CLAUDIA
		And if I cut my hair again?

				LESTAT
		It will grow back again!

				CLAUDIA
		But it wasn't always so! I had a
		mother once! And Louis - he had a
		wife! He was mortal the same as
		she! And so was I!

				LOUIS
		Claudia -

	She turns on Lestat.

				CLAUDIA
		You made us what we are, didn't
		you?

				LESTAT
		Stop her Louis!

				CLAUDIA
		DID YOU DO IT TO ME????

	She runs at him with the scissors, scoring his face.
	The cut heals. She scores it again. It heals again. She
	stares at him in horror.

				CLAUDIA
			(whispering)
		How did you do it?

				LESTAT
		And why should I tell you? It's in
		my power.

				CLAUDIA
		Why yours alone? Tell me how it was
		done!!!!

				LESTAT
		Be glad I made you what you are!
		You'd be dead not if I hadn't.

	He storms out. Louis goes to Claudia and picks her up
	in his arms.

				LOUIS
			(tenderly)
		We're immortal. You've always known
		that.

				CLAUDIA
		Tell me why... you've got to tell
		me...

	Louis carries her outside, onto the porch. There is an
	old flower-seller going by.

				LOUIS
		You see the old woman? That will
		never happen to you. You'll never
		grow old. You will never die.

				CLAUDIA
		And it means something else too,
		doesn't it? I shall never, ever
		grow up.

	She clutches Louis desperately.

				CLAUDIA
		I hate him. But I cannot bear to
		lose you. You're the only companion
		I have, forever. You taught me
		everything I know. Please tell me
		Louis. Tell me how it came to be
		that I am this... thing...

	Louis strokes her beautiful face, her hair.

				LOUIS
		Come... I've something to show
		you...


	EXT. NEW ORLEANS STREETS - NIGHT

	Louis walking, holding Claudia as if he was about to
	lose her.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		Though everything was changed,
		through the years had warped the
		contours of the streets, I found my
		way there, aware that I'd always
		known where it was and avoided it,
		not wanting to pass the doorway
		where I'd first heard Claudia cry.

	Louis back in the same street, outside the same house.
	He stands with Claudia at the window. There is a family
	inside, a picture of domestic tranquility.

				LOUIS
		I heard you crying. You were there
		in a room with your mother. You
		were hugging her for warmth, crying
		pitifully as you had been for days.
		Because your mother was dead...

	Claudia stares at him, suddenly very cold, very alert.

				LOUIS
		I opened the shutters... I came
		into the room... I felt pity for
		you. Pity, but something else.

	He can't go on. Claudia's eyes are remorseless.

				CLAUDIA
		You... fed on me?

				LOUIS
		And he found me with you. I ran,
		sickened at what I'd done. Then he
		cut his wrist and fed you from him.
		I tried to stop him, but you were a
		vampire then. And have been every
		night hereafter.

				CLAUDIA
		You both did it?

				LOUIS
		I took your life. He gave you
		another one.

	Claudia speaks through indrawn breath.

				CLAUDIA
		And here it is. And I hate you
		both.

	She runs.


	INT. ROOM SAN FRANCISCO

	Malloy and Louis.

				MALLOY
		But why did you tell her?

				LOUIS
		How could I not? She had to know.

				MALLOY
		And did you lose her? Did she go?

				LOUIS
		Where would she have gone? She was
		a child, and beautiful,
		heartbreaking merciless child. And
		I had made her that...


	EXT. STREETS - NIGHT

	Louis, walking the streets, shivering.

				LOUIS
		I walked all night. I walked as I
		walked years before when my mind
		swam with guilt at the thought of
		killing. I found myself at the
		Cathedral.

	A cathedral rising out of the mist, the doors open.

				LOUIS
		I thought of all the things I had
		done and couldn't undo. And I
		longed for one second's peace...

	Louis walks towards the doors, inside.


	INT. CATHEDRAL - NIGHT

	Louis enters. The dim lights of candles. A sacristan
	tending the altar, an old woman praying - otherwise
	empty.

				LOUIS
		I had no fear. If anything I longed
		for something to happen, for the
		stones to tremble as I entered the
		foyer.

	Louis walking down the nave of the church. He stops by
	the alter.

				LOUIS
		I almost genuflected from old
		habit. I almost prayed.

	Louis sits in a pew.

				LOUIS
		And then it struck me.


	LOUIS' POV

	The cross, the statues, the tabernacle.

				LOUIS
		What if the statues gave an image
		to nothing? What if I was the
		supernatural in this cathedral? The
		only immortal under this roof. And
		I felt nothing but loneliness.
		Loneliness to the point of madness.

	Suddenly a hand is laid on his shoulder. Louis almost
	jumps. He turns and sees the face of a grey-haired
	priest.

				PRIEST
		You wish to go to confession? I was
		about to lock up the church.

	Louis stares at him, tears in his eyes.

				PRIEST
		You are troubled, aren't you? Can I
		help?

				LOUIS
		It's too late, too late -

				PREIST
		No, it's never too late. Come...

	The priest gestures to the confessional. Louis rises,
	slowly.


	INT. CONFESSIONAL

	Louis, kneeling in the darkness. The hatch slides back.

				LOUIS
		Bless me father for I have sinned
		so often and so long, I don't know
		how to change nor beg for
		forgiveness.

				PRIEST
		Son, God is infinite in his
		capacity to forgive. Tell him from
		your heart.

				LOUIS
		Murders, father, death after death.
		The woman who died two nights ago
		in Jackson Square, I killed her.
		And thousands of others before her.
		I have walked the streets of New
		Orleans like the Grim reaper. And
		fed on human life for my own. I am
		a vampire, father, and have turned
		the one I love most of all into on
		too -

	The hatch slams down. Louis rises, confused, and the
	door is flung open, the priest stands there.

				PRIEST
		Do you know the meaning of
		sacrilege?

	Louis rises. Walks out.

				LOUIS
		Then there is no mercy.

	His face comes into the light. The priest steps back,
	open-mouthed.

				LOUIS
		You talk of sacrilege. Why if God
		exists does he suffer me to exist?

	He bares his fangs. The priest runs, screaming. Gets to
	the bellrope, begins to ring the bell. Louis swoops on
	him.

				LOUIS
		Why does he suffer me to live?

	Louis takes him, lifting him from the floor, till his
	feet stop kicking.


	INT. FLAT - NIGHT

	Louis enters, silently, like a corpse. He hears a voice
	behind him.

				CLAUDIA
		Locked together in hatred -

	He turns, sees her sitting in the darkness. She is
	wearing a tiny nightgown of stitched lace and pearls,
	weirdly adult and seductive. She comes towards him.

				CLAUDIA
		But I can't hate you Louis.

	She sprays perfume over her body as she comes nearer.

				CLAUDIA
		Is this the aroma of a mortal
		child?

	She whispers.

				CLAUDIA
		Louis. Lover.

	She kisses his cheek.

				CLAUDIA
		I was mortal to you. You gave me
		your immortal kiss. You became my
		mother and my father. And so I'm
		yours. Forever.

	She takes his face in her hands.

				CLAUDIA
		But now's the time to end it,
		Louis. Now's the time to leave him.

				LOUIS
		He'll never let us go.

	Claudia smiles.

				CLAUDIA
		Oh... really?


	EXT. DOCKLANDS - NEW ORLEANS - NIGHT

	A sailing ship, by the docks. Louis and Claudia talking
	to a shipping-clerk.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		So we made plans. She was convinced
		there were others of our kind in
		Europe, that they would have the
		answers Lestat couldn't provide.
		Lestat whom she now hated, who she
		thought she could be free of. I
		doubted, but then she had a
		surprise in store...


	INT. FLAT - NIGHT

	Lestat playing the piano. Louis reading. Claudia
	enters, wearing a cape and hat. She walks to the piano,
	sits at the end of the piano and stares at him as he
	plays.

				LESTAT
		What is it now? You irritate me!
		Your very presence irritates me!

				CLAUDIA
			(sweetly)
		Does it?

				LESTAT
		Yes. And I'll tell you something
		else! I've met someone who will
		make a better vampire than both of
		you.

				CLAUDIA
		Is that supposed to frighten me?

				LESTAT
		You're spoilt because you're an
		only child. You need a brother. Or
		I do. I'm weary of you both.

				CLAUDIA
		I suppose we could people the world
		with vampires, the three of us.

				LESTAT
		Not you my dear.

				CLAUDIA
		You're a liar. But you upset my
		plans.

				LESTAT
		What plans?

				CLAUDIA
		I came to make peace with you, even
		if you're the father of lies. I
		want things to be as they were.

	Louis perks up, puzzled.

				LESTAT
		Stop pestering me then!

				CLAUDIA
		Oh, Lestat. I must do more than
		that. I've brought a present for
		you.

				LESTAT
		Then I hope its a beautiful woman
		with endowments you will never
		possess.

	Claudia stares at him for a moment.

				CLAUDIA
		Better than that.

	She takes his hand and leads him into an inner room.
	Louis follows behind.

				CLAUDIA
		You haven't fed enough. I can tell
		by your color.


	INT. DINING ROOM - NIGHT

	Two beautiful youths, lying asleep on a couch, by a
	table full with a half-eaten meal. Lestat sighs.

				LESTAT
		Oh, Claudia, you've outdone
		yourself. Where did you find them?

				CLAUDIA
		Drunk on brandy wine. A thimbleful.
		I thought of you when I saw them.

				LESTAT
		We forgive each other then?

	Claudia stares at him, sitting. She nods.

	Lestat bites into the neck of one of the youths, sucks
	greedily and horribly. Claudia watches him without
	expression. He finished one, is about to take the other
	when he staggers. He looks at Claudia.

				LESTAT
		Absinthe? You gave them absinthe?

				CLAUDIA
		No. Laudanum.

	Lestat stares wildly at her, tries to move towards her,
	then slips to the floor.

				LESTAT
		Laudanum!

				CLAUDIA
		Yes. It killed them, unfortunately.
		But it keeps the blood warm.

	Lestat tries to rise.

				LESTAT
		Ah Louis, Louis, she killed them...
		and let me drink...

	Louis watches, appalled. He goes to move.

				CLAUDIA
		Don't Louis -

				LESTAT
		Louis, put me in my coffin...

				CLAUDIA
		I'll put you in your coffin.
		Forever.

	She pulls a knife out from under her shawl, walks
	rapidly to him and slashes his throat. Blood explodes
	from it.

				LOUIS
		Claudia! Don't do this thing!!!

				LESTAT
		Louis, Louis, I gave you the gift -
		help me -

	Claudia lacerates his face. Blood pours from
	everywhere. She plunges the knife in his chest. He
	falls back, fangs bared, clutching the knife. Claudia
	leaps on him then, bites deep into his neck as he dies.
	Louis screams, runs forward, pulls her away.

				LOUIS
		What have you done, Claudia -

	He drags her off Lestat, tries to pull her out of the
	room. She hisses at him.

				CLAUDIA
		Louis! Look what's happening to
		him!!

	Louis looks. The floor is a sea of blood. Lestat has
	begun to shrivel, as if he'd been a bag of blood. His
	skin is shriveling against his bones like parchment,
	his eyes are slipping back into his skull-like face.
	His lush, beautiful hair remains unchanged. But his
	clothes are virtually being emptied of the body. It is
	no more than bones, wrapped in paper and the pupils of
	the eyes suddenly roll up into the papered skull.

				LOUIS
		Lestat. Oh, God forgive us.

				CLAUDIA
		Don't mock me, Louis. Help me.

	She stares at the shriveled skeleton in its skin
	wrapping. She is fascinated. She sees the vampiric
	blood flow all over the floor. She touches it and
	brings her finger to her lips.

				CLAUDIA
		Goodnight, sweet prince, may
		flights of devils wing you to your
		rest.

	Louis walks forward, touches the skeleton, the blonde
	hair.

				LOUIS
		He's dead, Claudia, dead.

				CLAUDIA
		The one good lesson he taught me,
		Louis. Never drink from the dead.

	She stands up, all business suddenly.

				CLAUDIA
		Help me. We must get rid of him.

	She drags the coverlet from the table, knocking the
	crockery over the dead youths, and wraps Lestat's
	skeleton in it. She takes a bunch of chrysanthemums and
	places them in his skeleton hands.

				CLAUDIA
		Should we burn him? Bury him? What
		would he have liked, Louis?

				LOUIS
		Don't mock, Claudia...

				CLAUDIA
		The swamp...


	EXT. CARRIAGE - NIGHT

	Louis whipping the horses. Claudia beside him. Lestat's
	skeleton in the back, with the bodies of the two dead
	youths.

				CLAUDIA
		In Europe, Louis. We shall meet our
		own kind. Find the one who made
		him. Learn what it means.

				LOUIS
		And suppose the one who made him
		knows nothing and the vampire who
		made him knows nothing, and it goes
		back, nothing proceeding from
		nothing, until there is nothing!
		And we must live with the knowledge
		that there is no knowledge.
		
	The carriage pulls up by a swamp. Mist everywhere.
	Overhanging creepers.

				LOUIS
		And if we find the one who made
		him? Do we tell him we destroyed
		his own creation? The vampire
		Lestat?

	Louis drags out the bodies of the boys. He slides them
	into the waters of the swamp. We see ripples in the
	water and the churning of alligators, as they attack
	the corpses. Louis takes Lestat's skeleton in his arms.
	He slides it into the waters. The alligators speed
	towards it.

				CLAUDIA
		He belongs with those reptiles,
		Louis. He deserved to die.

				LOUIS
		Then maybe so do we. Every night of
		our lives. He was my brother. My
		maker. He gave me this life,
		whatever it is.

				CLAUDIA
		I did it for us, Louis. So we could
		be free.

	He stands there, saying nothing.

				CLAUDIA
		Louis, look at me.

				LOUIS
			(bitterly)
		I can't. Go away from me.

	Claudia is shocked to her core. She steps back. Louis
	stares at the rippling waters. Gradually the movement
	of alligators stops. Then he hears a sound he hasn't
	heard in years. Soft, choking. He turns, sees Claudia
	sitting by a cypress tree, like a little girl for the
	first time in years. She is weeping copiously.

				LOUIS
		Claudia - You're crying -

	We see her face, tears of blood running down it. She is
	heartbroken, lost.

				CLAUDIA
		You never talked to me like that -
		in all these years.

				LOUIS
		And you never cried -

				CLAUDIA
		I can't bear it when you do - I
		would die rather than lose you
		Louis. I would die the way he died.

	Louis gathers her in his arms.

				LOUIS
		Hush, Claudia, hush now my dear -

				CLAUDIA
		Tell me you don't hate me Louis. I
		did it for you -

	Louis walks her towards the carriage.

				LOUIS
		I love you Claudia. Always. And we
		are free now, Claudia. No Lestat.
		Just the two of us, beginning the
		great adventure of our lives.

	He lifts her into the carriage and drives off, leaving
	the silent waters of the swamp.


	INT. FLAT - NIGHT

	Sturdy mulatto workmen lifting cases and trunks out of
	the apartment. All the furniture is covered in white
	sheets. Claudia dressed in a cap and hat, is playing
	the piano by the light of one remaining oil-lamp.

	Louis comes from her room with the cage of canaries.

				LOUIS
		The birds. We forgot about the
		birds. There's nothing for it but
		to let them go.

	He opens the cage, and the canaries fly around the
	room.

	There is a knocking on the door. Claudia falters.

				CLAUDIA
		What was that?

				LOUIS
		The workmen must have a trunk -
		don't stop, cherie -

	He goes downstairs. Claudia plays a moment, then stops,
	perturbed. She goes to the window. Then sees something
	out there that makes her face go white. She screams.

				CLAUDIA
		Louis!!!


	THE STAIRWAY

	Louis walking to the door. The knocking gets louder.


	THE PARLOUR

	Claudia runs for the stairs, after Louis.


	THE HALLWAY

	Louis reaches the door. The knocking gets louder. He
	opens the door as -


	CLAUDIA

	Reaches the stairs. She screams -

				CLAUDIA
		Don't Louis -

	But Louis has opened the door. Nothing there. He looks
	back at Claudia, puzzled, then at the door again when,
	swooping into his vision comes the nightmare image of -


	LESTAT

	In filthy swamp-soaked rags, robust again, but his
	flesh shriveled, covered in scars, his eyes riddled,
	bloodshot. he roars.

				LESTAT
		WHERE IS SHE? WHERE IS THAT
		ACCURSED CHILD?

	Louis throws his body against the door, slamming it on
	Lestat's reaching hand. The hand withdraws, as Lestat
	roars. Louis bolts the door.

	Louis runs up the stairs, sweeps Claudia in his arms,
	watching appalled as the door shudders with the force
	of Lestat's body.


	IN THE PARLOUR

	Louis runs through with Claudia in his arms.

				LOUIS
		It can't be -

				CLAUDIA
		It is! Take the back stairwell -

	Suddenly Lestat crashes through the casement window,
	scattering blood everywhere, reefing himself on the
	shattered glass. He tumbles to the floor and gets
	unsteadily to his feet.

				LESTAT
		GIVE ME HER LOUIS!!

	Louis throws Claudia behind him and hurls himself on
	Lestat, who fights like a ravening animal, bits of his
	broken body coming off in the process. Then with a
	terrifying effort, Lestat hurls Louis off, goes for
	Claudia, who grabs the poker from the fireplace,
	scatters burning coals over him. He falls back, then
	comes at her again, as the drapes catch fire. Louis
	grabs the lamp.

				LOUIS
		Stay back - for the love of God...
		or I'll burn you alive...

	Lestat lunges again at Claudia.

	Louis hurls the lamp, which explodes him in flame.

	Lestat screams in agony, whirls around the room, then
	comes on Claudia again. She hurls another lamp.

	Louis throws the flaming sheets around him, wrapping
	him further in fire. Lestat falls to his knees,
	choking, hands up over his face in the smoke. The whole
	parlor is afire. Louis gathers up Claudia, smothering
	the burning house, carries her down the back stairs,
	through the carriage way and through the gathering
	crowds of mortals into the street.


	EXT. STREET - NIGHT

	Louis running, with Claudia in his arms. He looks back
	at the flames of the house. Sound of a ship's horn.

				CLAUDIA
		The ship is sailing without us!

				LOUIS
		Not yet. Holding her tightly, Louis
		runs.


	EXT. DECK OF SHIP - NEAR DAWN

	Louis stands at the railings in the morning mist as the
	ship moves down the river. He sees...


	CITY OF NEW ORLEANS

	With flame lighting up the sky.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		Though the fire seemed to spread
		through the quartier, I stood on
		that deck until dawn, fearful he
		would come out again of the very
		river like some monster to destroy
		us both. And all the while I
		thought, Lestat, we deserve your
		vengeance. You gave me the dark
		gift. And I delivered you into the
		hands of death for the second time.


	INT. ROOM. SAN FRANCISCO

	Louis and Malloy.

				MALLOY
		Did he die in the fire?

				LOUIS
		He was dead to us. We were free.
		That was all that mattered.


	EXT. SHIP - EVENING

	The ship, shrouded in mist.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		Though the ship was blessedly free
		of rats, a strange plague
		nonetheless struck its passengers.

	A body is slipped into the sea. A priest reads last
	rites to a mourning family.


	INT. SHIPS HOLD

	Trunks and cases, creaking with the ship's movement.
	Dead rats everywhere.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		Claudia and I alone seemed immune.
		We kept to ourselves, pondering the
		mystery of Lestat and the greater
		mystery of each other.
		

	EXT. SHIP - NIGHT

	Passing through the Straits of Gibralter.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		We reached the Mediterranean. I
		wanted those waters to be blue.
		They were black, nighttime waters
		and how I suffered then, straining
		to remember the color that a young
		man's senses had taken for granted,
		that my memory had let slip away
		for eternity. It was black off the
		coast of Italy, black off the coast
		of Greece, Europe itself was black.
		

	EXT. DECK - NIGHT

	Claudia, sitting with an easel and sketch-pad,
	sketching the bay of Naples. A beautifully realized
	drawing, all in shades of grey and black. Louis
	observes.

				CLAUDIA
		Louis, your quest is for darkness
		only. This sea is not your sea.
		They myths of men are not your
		myths. Their history isn't yours.

	The sketch changes to a sketch of -


	THE ACROPOLIS

	In the moonlight.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		We saw the Acropolis by moonlight,
		shades of grey and silver. And I
		longed for the brilliant white of
		those marbles in the hot sun of
		Homer...

	The sketch changes to a sketch of -


	TRANSYLVANIA

	And the traditional shapes of the vampire landscape.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		We docked at Varna and searched the
		rural countryside of the
		Carpathians, for what she liked to
		term "our kind"...


	MONTAGE OF SKETCHES

	A TRANSLYVANIAN VILLAGE, A GRAVEYARD.

	RUINED CASTLE AFTER CASTLE, LOOKING INTO THE SKIES...

				LOUIS
		The quest for these Old World
		vampires filled me with bitterness.
		We searched village after village,
		ruin after ruin and I was glad when
		always we found nothing. For what
		could the damned really have to say
		to the damned?


	INT. ROOM. SAN FRANCISCO

	Malloy and Louis.

				MALLOY
		You found nothing?

				LOUIS
		Peasant rumors, superstitions about
		garlic, crosses, stakes in the
		hear, all that - how do you say
		again? Bull shit. But one of our
		kind? Not a whisper.

				MALLOY
		No vampires in Transylvania? No
		Count Dracula?

				LOUIS
		Fictions, my friend. The vulgar
		fictions of a demented Irishman...
		So we repaired to Paris...


	EXT. BOULEVARD FACADE OF GRAND HOTEL AND PARIS OPERA

	Crowds and gaslight everywhere. Carriages, horses,
	OPERA coming from the opera house.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		I think the very name of Paris
		brought a rush of pleasure to me
		that was extraordinary. I was a
		Creole, after all and Paris was the
		mother of New Orleans, a universe
		whole and entire unto herself...


	EXT. 18TH CENTURE PALACES ALONG THE SEINE - NIGHT

	The high walls of the Louvre, dark figures walking in
	pairs through the shadowy tulieries.


	EXT. STREET - SHOP WINDOW

	Claudia, in furtrimmed muff and bonnet, peers through
	the glass at a display of dolls. Each doll in there
	seems to resemble her, with blonde hair and blue eyes.
	She peers deep into the shop and sees -

	MADELEINE, a young woman bent over a workbench painting
	a doll's face, oblivious to being watched.


	INT. OPERA STAIRCASE

	Louis and Claudia hurrying hand in hand with a crowd of
	mortals towards the sound of an ORCHESTRA TURNING
	beyond.


	INT. NOTRE DAME

	Claudia and Louis standing in the deep shadows, looking
	at the branching arches. Louis is overcome with
	sadness, Claudia is fascinated.


	INT. GALLERY

	Louis and Claudia walk among a series of mythological
	nudes by Poussin.


	INT. SALON - NIGHT

	Claudia, surrounded by discarded dresses and outfits,
	being attended by couturiers. All the clothes are tiny,
	to fit her frame, but have an adult cut and shape.

				LOUIS
		We were alive again. We were in
		love and so euphoric was I that I
		yielded to her every desire...


	INT. SUMPRUOUS HOTEL SUITE

	Full of late 19th century furniture, lots of Empire
	style, Regency, gilt, velvet and brocade.


	CLOSE ON A HUGE BLACK EBONY CHEST

	Against a wall, solemn among all the light and glitter.


	CLAUDIA

	By a large gilt mirror, in her new clothes. She is
	covered with jewelry, fixing earrings to her ears.

				CLAUDIA
		Help me, mon chere...

	Louis walks over, helps her with the earrings.

				CLAUDIA
		How do I look?

				LOUIS
		Still my beautiful child.

	Claudia laughs.

				CLAUDIA
		A beautiful child! Is that what you
		still think I am?

				LOUIS
		Yes...

	He turns away.

				CLAUDIA
		Why do you turn away? Why don't you
		look.

	She twirls, looking at herself in the mirror, then
	stops, stares at herself.

				CLAUDIA
		You want me to be your daughter
		forever, don't you?

				LOUIS
		Yes.

				CLAUDIA
		Well tell me, papa. What was it
		like making love?

	Louis is stunned. He blushes.

				CLAUDIA
		You don't remember? Or you never
		knew.

				LOUIS
		It was something hurries...and
		seldom savored... something acute
		that was quickly lost. It was the
		pale shadow of killing.

				CLAUDIA
		But how will I ever know, Louis?

	She stares at him through the mirror.

				CLAUDIA
		I'll never find them, will I? My
		own kind...


	EXT. BOULEVARD - EVENING

	Louis and Claudia walk along a boulevard like father
	and daughter. All around them are bourgeois Parisian
	families on their evening stroll. Claudia points at the
	children that pass.

				CLAUDIA
		Have I anything in common with her,
		Louis?

	She points to a beautiful French child walking by with
	her mother.

				CLAUDIA
		Or her, or her - or any of them?

				LOUIS
		Claudia, you torture yourself.

				CLAUDIA
		They are ducklings, that will grow
		into swans. Whereas I must be the
		duckling forever.

				LOUIS
		You are more beautiful than any of
		them.


	EXT. DOLL-SHOP - NIGHT

	We see Madeleine, inside, painting a doll's face. Louis
	and Claudia arrive outside.

				CLAUDIA
		All her dolls resemble me.


	POV

	Claudia's face, with the dolls in the background. The
	resemblance is uncanny.

				CLAUDIA
		Are they my kind Louis? Dolls never
		change either.

				LOUIS
		You are neither, Claudia. Now stop
		this -

	Madeleine sees Claudia from inside. She waves.

				LOUIS
		You know her?

				CLAUDIA
		Yes. Should I take her, Louis?
		Among her dolls? make a doll of her
		in turn?

				LOUIS
		Come, Claudia...

	He takes her arm. But Claudia shakes him off, and moves
	into the shop.


	EXT. LATIN QUARTER - NIGHT

	Louis walks briskly, head bowed.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		For a time we had been almost
		human, in the sensual whirl of what
		Paris had to offer. But the human
		delights of that city only served
		to remind her of the ageless child
		she had become. I felt her pain as
		I walked until I become aware that
		I was being followed.


	CLOSEUP - LOUIS' FEET

	Walking. A step echoes his.

	Louis stops. Turns, sees nothing. Then walks again. The
	echoing steps begin again.

	Louis again. Sees a shadow, flitting.

				LOUIS
		Claudia!

	Nothing. He walks again, hears the same effect. Then he
	stops. He stares at a gaslamp opposite.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		So it was when I had given up the
		search for vampires that a vampire
		found me...

	Santiago, a tall vampire, materializes under the
	gaslight. And Louis gradually realizes that this
	vampire has assumed the same attitude, posture, clothes
	and hair-style as Louis.

	Louis gives an involuntary shake of the head. Santiago
	mimics. Louis takes a step forwards. Santiago mimics.
	Louis folds his arms. Santiago mimics.

				LOUIS & STATIAGO
			(simultaneously)
		Clever.

				LOUIS
		You mean me harm?

				SANTIAGO
			(a beat later)
		You mean me harm?

	Louis calculates.

				LOUIS
		Trickster. Buffoon!

	Santiago echoes the first word, but not the second.
	Louis has broken his composure. He turns his back on
	Santiago, only to come face to face with Santiago right
	in front of him.

	Again Louis turns this back to find Santiago facing
	him.

	Louis turns, glowers, refusing to look at him.

				LOUIS
		I've searched the world for an
		immortal and this is what I find?

	Slowly he looks up. Santiago draws close, breaking the
	mirror trick and suddenly slams Louis back against the
	wall.

	Louis is furious. He regains his balance, strikes out
	at Santiago and when Santiago vanishes, to reappear
	behind him, Louis slams back his elbow into his
	midriff. Santiago staggers, amazed and then rushes at
	Louis, throwing him down.

	Louis rolls back to his feet, then to his amazement
	sees two vampires, on in front, on behind. He looks
	both ways, then sees one has vanished. He stares,
	awestruck, at this new one:

				ARMAND
		He looks like an angel.

				ARMAND
		You are all right.

	He reaches into his waistcoat, takes an engraved
	invitation out of his pocket and thrusts it at Louis.

	Louis reads it aloud, as we see:

	"THEATRE DES VAMPIRES
	By Special Invitation
	Friday, 9 p.m."

				ARMAND
		Bring the petit beauty with you. No
		one will harm you. I won't allow
		it. Remember my name. Armand.

	Armand bows and vanishes.

	Louis listens to the silence.


	EXT BOULEVARD DES CAPUCHINES - THEATRE DES VAMPIRES -
	NIGHT

	Louis formally dressed with Claudia in rich attire on
	his arm. They pass people buying tickets for the
	theatre and go inside.

				LOUIS
		Remember what I've told you.
		They'll have different powers.
		They'll read your thoughts if you
		allow it.

	They draw close to:


	HUGE POSTERS

	Reading -

	"THEATRE DES VAMPIRES PRESENTS
	THE MASQUE OF THE RED DEATH
	By Edgar Allen Poe"

	The posters are illustrated with cliched images of
	vampires overcoming damsels in distress.


	ANOTHER ANGLE

				CLAUDIA
		But this can't be real. This is
		nonsense.

				LOUIS
		Nonsense all right. But something
		tell me it's going to be the
		strangest nonsense we've ever seen.

	Warily, they show their invitations to the mortal
	ticket taker at the door. He glances away
	indifferently.


	INT. THEATRE BOX - NIGHT

	Claudia and Louis look at the crowd as the lights go
	down.

				CLAUDIA
		Mortals, mortals everywhere. And
		lots of drops to drink.

				LOUIS
		They are here. I know they are.
		Listen for something that doesn't
		make a sound.

	Stage: curtain rises.

	An elaborate painted set of an Italianate castle. Death
	standing before it, the traditional image of the Grim
	Reaper, complete with magnificent scythe.

				LOUIS
			(whispers)
		It's a vampire. It's the one I saw
		in Rue St Jacques.

	A version of the Poe story unfolds before them. All of
	the participants are vampires. All beautiful gleaming
	white, aged 20 or 30.

				LOUIS
		They use no paint. And the audience
		think it is paint.

				CLAUDIA
		How devilishly clever.

	A spotlight uncovers a mortal woman suddenly forced out
	upon the stage.

				CLAUDIA
		She's no vampire.

				LOUIS
		No. She's frightened. She doesn't
		know where she is.

	The audience laughs uneasily, then stops as the Mortal
	Woman comes into the footlights. She is too beautiful,
	too confused. Santiago, as Death, advances on her. She
	backs away, terrified, then sees the other vampires, in
	a phalanx, advancing from behind, in a half-circle.

				MORTAL WOMAN
		I don't want to die!

	She looks around in panic. Santiago swoons, arms over
	his breast as if he is hopelessly in love.

				SANTIAGO
		We are death!

	The Mortal Woman steps to the footlights.

				MORTAL WOMAN
		Someone help me. Please... What
		have I done?

	Louis whispers to Claudia.

				LOUIS
		This is no performance.

				CLAUDIA
		And no one knows but us...


	ON THE STAGE

				SANTIAGO
		We all die. Death is the one thing
		you share with all those here.

	Santiago gestures to the audience.


	AUDIENCE

	Rapt faces.


	ON THE STAGE

				MORTAL WOMAN
		But I'm young...

				SANTIAGO
		Death is no respecter of age. He
		can come any time, any place. Need
		I tell you what fate has in store
		for you?

				MORTAL WOMAN
		I would take my chance. Let me go!
		Please...

				SANTIAGO
		And if you take that chance and
		live, what is your fate? The
		humpbacked toothless visage of old
		age?

	Santiago approaches her and tears the drawstring out of
	her peasant blouse. It opens completely and starts to
	slip. She tries to catch it, but gently stops her
	wrists. The blouse falls, exposing her young breasts.


	LOUIS AND CLAUDIA

				LOUIS
		This is monstrous!

				CLAUDIA
		Yes, and very beautiful.


	ON THE STAGE

				SANTIAGO
		Just as this flesh is pink now, it
		will turn grey and wrinkle with
		age.

				MORTAL WOMAN
		Let me live, please. I don't care.

				SANTIAGO
		Then why should you care if you die
		now?

	She shakes her head, confused. he catches her wrists
	behind her back.


	AUDIENCE

	Is awestruck by her beauty, her suffering.


	SANTIAGO

	Draws near her cheek.

				SANTIAGO
		And suppose death had a heart to
		love and to release you? To whom
		would he turn his passion? Would
		you pick a person from the crowd
		there? A person to suffer as you
		suffer?


	AUDIENCE

	A young girl cries out in jest.

				YOUNG GIRL
		Oh, yes, take me Monsieur Vampire!
		I adore you!

	Audience roars with laughter.


	ON THE STAGE

				SANTIAGO
		You wait your turn.

	The audience laughs again.

	The Mortal Woman shakes her head in panic.

				SANTIAGO
		Well, have you a sister, a mother,
		a daughter you would send in your
		place?


	CLOSE ON CLAUDIA

	Even she is repelled by the cruelty. She shakes her
	head.


	MORTAL WOMAN

	Shakes her head. She is helpless.

				SANTIAGO
		We alone can give death meaning. Do
		you know what it means to be loved
		by death, to become our bride?

	Mortal Woman looks up on the verge of hysteria or
	fainting. But then her eyes mist over. She is being
	entranced.


	FROM HER POV

	We realize she is looking past Santiago at the divinely
	beautiful Armand, who has just stepped out of the
	wings. Armand has entranced her. He passes Santiago.
	Santiago stiffens, but yields the stage.

				ARMAND
		No pain.

				MORTAL WOMAN
		No pain?

	Armand takes her by the naked shoulders.

				ARMAND
		Your beauty is a gift to us.


	ON THE STAGE

	Armand gestures to the others who slowly, gracefully
	close in.

				ARMAND
		Who deserves such a gift?

	He pulls the drawstring from her skirt and it falls
	revealing her nakedness. But she is spellbound.

				MORTAL WOMAN
		No pain...

	Armand embraces her, drinks, her naked body stark
	against her black clothes, then he passes her to the
	other vampires one by one.


	CLOSE ON LOUIS

	Who battles desire and hunger with anger.

				LOUIS
		I've seen enough of this! I loathe
		it!

				CLAUDIA
		Be still!


	ON THE STAGE

	The naked Mortal Woman lies dead on the floor. The
	vampires seem to vanish one by one. As the curtain
	draws across, the Audience loudly applauds what they
	presume are theatrical tricks.


	ANOTHER ANGLE

	The audience, milling towards the exits. They talk in
	vacuous terms about the beauty of the show, the
	symbolism of it, the daring of it as they leave.

	Gradually Louis and Claudia are left alone in the empty
	theatre. Louis seems anxious to leave. Claudia whispers
	in his ear.

				CLAUDIA
		Patience, Louis. Patience.

	He looks around the empty theatre, more eerie now than
	when the play was on. The red curtain shifts slightly
	in a hidden breeze, a candle sputters and dies in a
	box. Then the candle flares again, and we see Armand in
	the box, looking down on them. He stares with a dreamy
	expression, saying nothing.

				LOUIS
		We've been searching for you for a
		very long time...

	His voice echoes eerily. Armand gestures for them to
	follow him.


	INT. FOOT OF STAIRWAY

	Armand leading, Louis and Claudia following. It opens
	into a -


	HUGE UNDERGROUND BALLROOM

	Walls are painted with famous copies of Durer,
	Brueghel, Goya and Bosch depictions of death. Fine
	wooden coffins line the walls. Candles burn in sconces,
	casting alternate shadows and pools of light. Armand
	walks through, gesturing Louis and Claudia to follow
	him.

	As they walk through, vampire man and women appear out
	of the shadows like wraiths, startling them, drifting
	around them, stroking them, touching Claudia as if she
	were a doll. Shrieks of preternatural laughter.

	Armand gestures to the vampires to back off.

	All obey but ESTELLE.

				ESTELLE
		Such a darling.

	She menaces Claudia, her breasts enormous, her fangs
	bared. Armand throw her a look, and she is flung
	against the wall.

	Louis stares around. The vampires faces drift towards
	him and away, always disclosing the face of Armand, who
	seems some distance away, but strangely close, staring
	at Louis with a constantly calm, hypnotic gaze. Then a
	young mortal boy comes from the shadows with a
	candelabra, which he hands to Armand.

	Armand and the boy come towards them, leading them
	along the walls, his candelabra illuminating the
	ghastly murals, his face gleaming like an angel above
	the candleflame.

				LOUIS
		Monstrous.

				ARMAND
		Yes, and very beautiful.

				LOUIS
		Your lips, they didn't move.

				ARMAND
		They did, but too fast for you to
		see them. No magic, just grace and
		speed.

	The boy is watching Louis. Armand's hand beckons and
	the boy draws up to Louis in the candlelight. He places
	his arms on Louis' shoulders. Louis glances at Armand,
	who smiles. Louis sees the puncture marks on the boy's
	neck.

				ARMAND
		He wants you...

	Louis is utterly confused. Can't resist. Drinks his
	blood.

	The boy's body presses against him, sensual, willing.
	The other vampires appear all around Louis, who
	suddenly senses it and draws away, ashamed.

	Claudia watches warily, from a distance. Armand beckons
	at her and Louis and open a door in the wall which
	reveals a stone staircase.


	INT. MEDIEVAL ROOM

	Medieval chairs, table, an old coffin, a bed in one
	corner, a blazing fire. A medieval painting of Satan,
	being banished from heaven, above the fire. Armand
	places the boy on the bed, settling him so he sleeps.

				ARMAND
		Disappointing, isn't it? To come so
		far and find so little. Jaded
		ingenues, amusing themselves with
		make- believe...

				LOUIS
		We had feared we were the only
		ones...

				ARMAND
		But how did you come into
		existence?

	He glances at Louis, then at Claudia, who averts her
	eyes.

				ARMAND
		You don't want to answer... Two
		vampires from the new world, come
		to guide us into the new era as all
		we love slowly rots and fades away.

				LOUIS
		Are you the leader of this group?

				ARMAND
		If there were a leader, I would be
		the one.

	Claudia stares at him constantly, guarded.

				LOUIS
		So you have the answers...

				ARMAND
		Ah! You have questions?

				LOUIS
		What are we?

				ARMAND
		Nothing if not vampires...

				LOUIS
		Who made us what we are?

				ARMAND
		Surely you know the one who made
		you...

				LOUIS
		But the one who made him, who made
		the one who made him, the source of
		all this evil...

	Louis looks at the picture. Armand watches him.

				ARMAND
		That is a picture, nothing more.

				LOUIS
		You mean we are not children of
		Satan?

				ARMAND
		No.

	He smiles at Louis. A smile of infinite compassion.

				ARMAND
		I understand. I saw you in the
		theatre, your suffering, your
		sympathy for that girl. I saw you
		with the boy. You die when you
		kill, you feel you deserve to die
		and you stint on nothing. But does
		that make you evil? Or, since you
		comprehend what you call goodness,
		does it not make you good?

				LOUIS
		Then there is nothing.

				ARMAND
		Perhaps...

	He passes his finger through the candle flame.

				ARMAND
		And perhaps this is the only real
		evil left...

				LOUIS
		Then God does not exist...

				ARMAND
		I have not spoken to him...

				LOUIS
		And no vampire here has discourse
		with God or the Devil?

				ARMAND
		None that I've ever known. I know
		nothing of God or the Devil, I have
		never seen a vision nor learnt a
		secret that would damn or save my
		soul. And as far as I know, after
		four hundred years I am the oldest
		living vampire in the world.

	He stares at them, his face angelic, hypnotic, young.
	His eyes hold them both in a trance.

				LOUIS
		My God... So it's as I always
		feared. Nothing, leading to
		nothing.

				ARMAND
		You fell too much. So much you make
		me feel...

	He stares from Claudia to Louis. He seems to be reading
	their souls.

				ARMAND
		The one who made you should have
		told you this. The one who left the
		old world for the new...

				LOUIS
		He knew nothing. He just didn't
		care.

				ARMAND
		Knew? You mean he is...

	Claudia appears suddenly to Louis' shoulder,
	interrupting.

				CLAUDIA
		Come, beloved. It's time we were on
		our way. I'm hungry and the city
		waits.

	She stares hard at Armand. Armand looks from her to
	Louis.

				ARMAND
		So soon to go?

	He seems genuinely regretful. But Claudia pulls Louis
	out.


	INT. DARKENED CORRIDORS AND THEATRE - NIGHT

	Louis and Claudia feel their way through darkened
	corridors, trying to find their way out.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		The place was dark as we left, a
		darkness that confounded even
		Claudia. And as we blundered
		through it, again came the thought:
		I have wronged Lestat, I have hated
		him for the wrong reasons.

	Suddenly a light comes on. They see they are in the
	empty theatre. Santiago stands on the stage, under a
	candle.

				SANTIAGO
		How did you wrong him?

	Louis is stunned.

				LOUIS
		You read my thoughts?

				SANTIAGO
		You said a name -

				LOUIS
		A name I don't want to say again.

				SANTIAGO
		I seemed to recognize it...

	Other vampires appear behind him.

				SANTIAGO
		There is but one crime among us
		vampires here.

	He looks at Claudia.

				SANTIAGO
		You should know, who are so
		secretive about the vampire who
		made you.

	Claudia laughs.

				CLAUDIA
		Boredom!

				SANTIAGO
		It is the crime that means death to
		any vampire. To kill your own kind!

				CLAUDIA
		Aaaah! I was so afraid it was to be
		born like Venus out of the foam, as
		we were! Come Louis, let's go!


	EXT. HOTEL SAINT GABRIEL - NIGHT

	Claudia and Louis enter the Lobby.

				CLAUDIA
		I loathe them! I can't stand the
		sight of them! Stupid bourgeois
		Parisians, all dressed in black
		like some private club! I've
		searched for them the world over
		and I despise them!

				LOUIS
		What danger?

				CLAUDIA
		I can feel it from them! They want
		to know who made us, what became of
		him. They have their rules, their
		idiotic rules!

	They come to their room, enter.


	INT. HOTEL ROOMS - NIGHT

	Louis closes the door behind him. Claudia paces.

				LOUIS
		Do you think I would let them harm
		you?

				CLAUDIA
		No, you would not, Louis. Danger
		hold you to me.

				LOUIS
		Love holds you to me. And we are in
		danger, not you.

				CLAUDIA
		Love?

	She smiles at him. A strange, sad, adult smile.

				CLAUDIA
		You would leave me for Armand if he
		beckoned you.

				LOUIS
		Never.

				CLAUDIA
		He wants you as you want him. He's
		been waiting for you. He wants you
		for a companion. He bides his time
		that place. he finds them as dull
		and lifeless as we do.

				LOUIS
		That's not so.

				CLAUDIA
		Do you know what his soul said to
		me without saying a word? When he
		put me in that trance...

				LOUIS
		So you felt it too!

				CLAUDIA
		Let him go, he said. Let him go.

	She touches his face.

				CLAUDIA
		Is that what I should do Louis? Let
		you go? My father? My lover? My
		Louis, who made me?

	There are tears in her eyes. Louis lifts her up in his
	arms.

				LOUIS
		He can protect us, Claudia.

				CLAUDIA
		You really believe that?


	EXT. DOLL-SHIP - NIGHT

	Claudia, staring at the dolls. We see Madeleine inside,
	painting a doll. She sees Claudia and smiles and waves.


	INT. THEATRE - NIGHT

	Louis, sitting alone in the box, as the curtains draw
	back, to show Santiago as death, as before. Louis takes
	advantage of the darkness to slip away.


	INT. ARMAND'S ROOM - NIGHT

	Armand opens the door to Louis' knock.

				ARMAND
		I was waiting for you...

				LOUIS
		Listen to me.

	He follows Armand into the room.

				LOUIS
		Claudia is dear to me. My...
		daughter.

				ARMAND
		Your lover.

				LOUIS
		No, my beloved, my child.

				ARMAND
		If you say so. You are innocent.

				LOUIS
		I'm not innocent. But I'm afraid.
		She feels she's in danger from the
		others.

				ARMAND
		She is.

				LOUIS
		But why?

				ARMAND
		I could give you reasons. Her
		silence. Her youth. It's forbidden
		to make so young, so helpless, that
		cannot survive on its own.

				LOUIS
		Then blame the one who made her...

				ARMAND
		Did you kill this vampire who made
		you both? Is that why you won't say
		his name? Santiago thinks you did.

				LOUIS
		We want no quarrel with him.

				ARMAND
		It's already begun. If you want to
		save her, send her away.

				LOUIS
		Then I leave too.

	Armand smiles.

				ARMAND
		So soon? Without any of those
		answers you so longed for?

				LOUIS
		You said there were none.

				ARMAND
		But you asked the wrong questions.
		Do you know how few vampires have
		the stamina for immortality? How
		quickly they perish of their own
		will.

				LOUIS
		We can do that?

				ARMAND
		You would never give up life. If
		the world were reduced to one empty
		cell, on fragile candle, you stay
		alive and study it. You see too
		clearly. You see too much.

				LOUIS
		That's what the one who made me
		said.

				ARMAND
		How he must have loved you.

	Armand suddenly grips Louis close to him.

				ARMAND
		Louis, I need you more than he ever
		did. I need a link with this
		century. The world changes. We do
		not. Therein lies the irony that
		ultimately kills us. I need you to
		make contact with this age.

	Louis laughs bitterly.

				LOUIS
		He? Don't you see? I'm not the
		spirit of any age! I'm at odds with
		everything and always have been!
		I'm not even sure what I am!

	Armand smiles.

				ARMAND
		But Louis, that is the very spirit
		of your age. The heart of it. You
		fall from grace has been the fall
		of a century.

	Louis is stunned.

				LOUIS
		And the vampires of the Theatre?

				ARMAND
		Like moths around the candle of the
		age. Decadent, useless. They can't
		reflect anything. But you do. You
		reflect its broken heart.

	Louis is speechless.

				ARMAND
		Are these not the answers you came
		for?

				LOUIS
			(softly)
		Yes... My God...

				ARMAND
		A vampire with a human soul. An
		immortal with a mortal's passion.
		You are beautiful, my friend.
		Lestat must have wept when he made
		you -

				LOUIS
		Lestat! You knew Lestat!

				ARMAND
		Yes I knew him. Knew him well
		enough not to mourn his passing.

	Armand stands. He takes Louis by the arm, leads him
	towards the back wall.

				ARMAND
		But you must go now. You must get
		her safely out of Paris.

	He opens a hidden door in the wall.

				ARMAND
		No-one else knows of this door.
		When you knock you will find me
		waiting...


	EXT. THEATRE DES VAMPIRES - NIGHT

	Louis, in the street outside, as the door closes behind
	him.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		I felt a kind of peace at last. I
		had found the teacher which Lestat
		could never, I knew now, have been.
		I knew knowledge would never be
		withheld by Armand. It would pass
		through him as through a pane of
		glass. And I knew Claudia must
		leave me...


	INT. HOTEL SUITE - NIGHT

	Louis enters. There is unfamiliar scent in the air, a
	doll sitting by the mirror. Louis looks in the mirror
	and sees...


	MADELEINE

	The doll-maker, resplendent in green taffeta, sitting
	like a Madonna with Claudia on her lap. Claudia's arms
	are wound round her neck. The contrast between mortal
	woman and immortal child is plain.

				CLAUDIA
		Madeleine... Louis is shy.

	Madeleine rises and comes towards Louis. She draws back
	the lace fringes round her throat, so he can see the
	two marks there. She says softly, dreamily.

				MADELEINE
		Drink.

	Louis turns away. Claudia speaks, icy, from the bed.

				CLAUDIA
		Do it Louis. Because I cannot do
		it. I haven't the strength. You saw
		to that when you made me.

	Louis turns to Madeleine.

				LOUIS
		You haven't the vaguest conception
		under God of what you ask!

				MADELEINE
		Au contraire, monsieur, I have.

	Louis pushes her away. Claudia screams.

				CLAUDIA
		You have found your new companion,
		Louis! You will make me mine!

	Louis grips Madeleine and shakes her.

				LOUIS
		How do we seem to you? Do you think
		us beautiful, magical, our white
		skin, our fierce eyes? Drink, you
		ask me! Have you any idea of the
		thing you will become?

				CLAUDIA
		Your evil is that you cannot be
		evil! And I will suffer for it no
		longer!

				LOUIS
		Don't make me, Claudia! I cannot do
		it!

				CLAUDIA
		Yet you could do it to me!
		Snatching me from my mother's hands
		like two monsters in a fairy-tale!
		Couldn't you have waited? Six more
		years and I would have had that
		shape! And now you weep! You
		haven't tears enough for what
		you've done to me.

	She points to Madeleine

				CLAUDIA
		You give her to me! Do this before
		you leave me!

	She begins to weep, sobbing like a child.

				CLAUDIA
		Oh God! I love you still, that's
		the torment of it. But you know I
		must leave you Louis...

				LOUIS
		Yes...

				CLAUDIA
		And who will care for me my love,
		my dark angel, when you are gone?

	Louis looks at Madeleine

				LOUIS
		You promise to care for her then?

				MADELEINE
		Yes...

				LOUIS
		And you know what you ask for?

	She wraps her arms around Claudia.

				MADELEINE
		Yes.

				LOUIS
		What do you think she is,
		Madeleine? A doll?

				MADELEINE
		A child who can't die...

	Her finger clutches a locket around her neck, Louis
	touches it, opens it.


	THE LOCKET

	A picture of a young girl, Claudia's age, wistful,
	beautiful.

				LOUIS
			(softly)
		And the child who did die?

				MADELEINE
		My daughter...

	Louis takes her chin in his hand, gently.

				LOUIS
		Look at the gaslight. Don't take
		your eyes off it. You will be
		drained to the point of death, but
		you must stay alive. Do you hear
		me?

				MADELEINE
		Yes!

	Louis pulls her to him and starts to drink her blood.


	EXT. HOTEL BALCONY - LATER

	Louis on the balcony, weakened terribly. A breeze blows
	on the gauze curtains behind him, through which we
	see...

	SILHOUETTES of Madeleine and Claudia. Madeleine her
	arms outstretched, now a vampire, a long moan of pain
	coming from her. Claudia comes through the curtains,
	alarmed.

				CLAUDIA
			(whispers)
		Louis!

	Louis speaks without turning.

				LOUIS
		She is dying. It happened to you
		too, but your child's mind can't
		remember.

				CLAUDIA
		But if she dies...

				LOUIS
		It's only mortal death.

	He turns to look at Claudia.

				LOUIS
		Bear me no ill will, my love. We
		are now even.

				CLAUDIA
		What do you mean?

				LOUIS
		What died tonight inside that room
		was not that woman. It will take
		her many nights to die, perhaps
		years. What has died in that room
		tonight is the last vestige in me
		of what was human.

	She takes his hand.

				CLAUDIA
		Yes father. At last. We are een.

	He bends down and kisses her. He looks up, at the
	wafting curtains. He sees -


	MANY VAMPIRE SHADOWS

	Silhouetted, coming closer.


	CLAUDIA

	Looks up and screams.


	THE CURTAINS

	Are ripped aside. The vampires of the Theatre surge
	through.

				ESTELLE
		Time for justice, little one.

	The vampires close on them as Louis struggles,
	Claudia's scream pierces the night air.


	INT. CORRIDOR OF THEATRE DES VAMPIRES - NIGHT

	In a press of vampires, Louis, Claudia and Madeleine
	are forced down the dark corridor. Into -


	THE BALLROOM

	Vampire chaos, as they are dragged through. Louis
	struggling like a demon.

				LOUIS
		Armand! Get me Armand! he wouldn't
		countenance this -

				SANTIAGO
		You can make no demands here!
		Buffoon! Bastard -

	Santiago strikes Louis to the ground. As he struggles
	to his feet, he sees the vampires part around a figure
	coming through. He gasps at the sight of -


	LESTAT

	Dressed beautifully, but horribly scarred now, from the
	fire as well as the earlier stabbing. Lestat is
	confused, ancient, teetering, reaching for Santiago's
	shoulder to steady himself.

				LESTAT
		Louis...

				SANTIAGO
		Is he the one?

	Lestat shakes his head.

				LESTAT
		No, the child. The child was the
		one...

				SANTIAGO
		All the murderers!!!

				LOUIS
		You are alive, Lestat! It can't be
		murder! Tell them how you treated
		us...

	Lestat reaches out to Louis.

				LESTAT
		No... You come back to me Louis...

				LOUIS
		Are you mad???

				ESTELLE
		The sentence is death! To all of
		them!!!

				LESTAT
		Only the girl - it was the girl -

	The sound of something being dragged through the crowd.
	Horrible echoing, scraping -

	Lestat grips Santiago.

				LESTAT
		You promised me - I could take him
		back to New Orleans - Louis -
		there's something I must tell you -
		about that night - that night I met
		you -

	He stares around him, confused. The scraping gets
	louder.

				LOUIS
		You let her go, Lestat - you let
		her free - and I'll come back with
		you -

	Santiago grabs Louis by the neck.

				SANTIAGO
		Death for the others. For you
		eternity in a box -

	We see now what caused the scraping. A huge metal
	coffin being dragged through the vampires. Claudia
	screams.

				SANTIAGO
		Walled in a dungeon. Your only
		company will be your screams...
		Perhaps it will take centuries...

	The vampires grab Louis. They force him towards the
	coffin. Lestat struggles with them.

				LESTAT
		He's coming home with me - you
		promised -

				SANTIAGO
			(laughing)
		We promised nothing!

	Louis struggles fiercely as he is forced into the
	coffin. Claudia weeps.

				LOUIS
		They've fooled you, Lestat! You
		must reach Armand! Armand has the
		power!

	Louis, struggling in the coffin. Then the lid is forced
	down, huge locks closed over it.


	INT. COFFIN

	Louis, in the smallest imaginable space. Beating his
	forehead against the metal.


	EXT. COFFIN

	Claudia, throwing herself on the coffin, crying. She is
	dragged away. Vampire hands drag the coffin across the
	stone floor.


	INT. COFFIN

	Louis, forehead pouring with blood, being thrown this
	way and that. The coffin is lifted, upside down, Louis'
	head crashes off the floor.


	EXT. COFFIN

	Is thrust into a niche in the wall. Bricks being placed
	over, mortar trowelled on.


	INT. COFFIN

	Louis upside down. Sounds of bricks and mortar. Then
	terrifying, unearthly scream pierces the coffin,
	striking to his very soul.

				LOUIS
		Claudia!!!

	He loses consciousness.


	BLACKNESS

	INT. COFFIN

	Louis sleeps, upside down. Sound of bricks being
	broken, thrown aside. Then of locks breaking.

	Louis opens his eyes. The lid opens. He sees -

				ARMAND
		Above him, reaching down to take
		his hand.

				ARMAND
		Hurry. Don't make a sound.

	Louis gets out, into a vast long catacomb. Louis runs
	to the end of it, steps through a broken brick wall.

				LOUIS
		Where is she? Where's Claudia?

				ARMAND
		Follow me - that way - through my
		cell -

	He points to his cell at the end of the passage, the
	foot of the steps. Sound of rain beyond the door.

				LOUIS
		Not without Claudia. Where is she?

				ARMAND
		I can't save her.

				LOUIS
		You can't believe I'd leave without
		her. Armand! You must save her! You
		have no choice.

				ARMAND
		Louis, I can't save her. I will
		only risk losing you -

	Louis runs up the stone stairs. It leads to the
	ballroom. He enters.

	Estelle stands far off, looking at him coolly. She
	lifts the stage skull mask and laughs softly behind it.
	A male vampire slumps in a chair staring softly at
	Louis.

	Silence. Indifference.

	Louis sees Lestat sitting in a far corner. he rushes up
	to Lestat, who looks up at him, confused. He's holding
	something crumpled, made of cloth.

				LESTAT
		You'll come home with me Louis? For
		a little while... until I am myself
		again.

				LOUIS
		CLAUDIA!!!

	Louis turns round and round in rage. Passive still
	faces. A door bangs open and shut.

	Louis looks again at Lestat. He snatches the cloth from
	Lestat's hand. We see it is a small torn bloodstained
	dress. Claudia's dress.

	The door bangs again. Estelle laughs. Rain gusts into
	the ballroom.

	Louis goes to the door, holding the dress. Armand
	approaches, trying to pull him away, but Louis shrugs
	him off. He draws nearer and nearer and stairs at -


	INT. BRICK AIRWELL

	On the stones lie Claudia and Madeleine, burn to ashes,
	in each other's arms, like the corpses of his wife and
	daughter in the New Orleans graveyard, embracing each
	other.

	Only Claudia's blond hair and Madeleine's red hair
	remain unburnt.

	Louis looks up at the walls of this airwell, many
	stories to the sky. He cries out in agony.

	Santiago appears behind him, staring. Louis roars in
	horror and attacks Santiago, scattering the ashes into
	the rainy wind. Claudia's golden locks fly up into the
	wind, they whirl around the warring figure.

	Armand appears, drags Louis free, pulls him screaming
	from the airwell, into the ballroom, towards the exit.

	Claudia's hair is sucked up by the wind through the
	airwell, towards the night sky.


	EXT. NOTRE DAME DOOR - NIGHT

	Louis is slumped against the stone wall. Armand stands
	beside him like a guardian angel.

				ARMAND
		I couldn't prevent it.

				LOUIS
		I don't believe you. I do not have
		to read your soul to know that you
		lie.

				ARMAND
		Louis, they cannot be brought back.
		There are some things that are
		impossible, even for me.

				LOUIS
		You let them do it.

	Louis climbs to his feet.

				LOUIS
		You held sway over them. They
		feared you. You wanted it to
		happen.

				ARMAND
		Louis, I swear I did not.

				LOUIS
		I understand you only too well. You
		let them do it, as I let Lestat
		turn a child into a demon. As I let
		her rip Lestat's heart to pieces!
		Well I am no longer that passive
		fool that has spun evil from evil
		till the web traps the one who made
		it. Your melancholy spirit of this
		century! I know what I must do. And
		I warn you - you saved me tonight,
		so I return the favor - do not go
		near your cell in the Theatre Des
		Vampires again.


	EXT. THEATRE DES VAMPIRES - DAWN

	Wet and deserted, the streets around the theatre are
	quiet.


	CLOSEUP - CLOCK

	Chiming five a.m.


	CLOSE ON LOUIS

	Looking at the paling sky. He is in an alleyway,
	outside of Armand's cell. He has a huge keg with him.
	he finds the door unlocked. He enters.


	INT. CELL

	Empty. The hearth is cold. The old coffin is gone.
	Louis silently closes the door to the passage and
	blocks it with an immense bar. He goes in the other
	door.


	INT. THEATRE

	Louis hurls kerosene all over the stage, the curtain,
	the sets, the seats below. He grabs the scythe from the
	playlet. He walks out. Dribbling a trail of kerosene
	behind him.


	INT. STAIRS

	Louis walking rapidly down, leaving the trail of
	kerosene. He creeps quietly into the -


	BALLROOM

	Leaking kerosene from the cask. He splashes over the
	coffins that gleam in the dimness.

	Then he strikes a match and heaves it into the
	kerosene. Everything bursts into flame. The trail of
	kerosene roars into fire through the ballroom over the
	coffins and up the stairs. We hear EXPLOSIONS of fire
	from above.


	LOUIS

	Shudders all over, fighting the morning weakness. He
	readies the scythe, like the grim reaper.


	ESTELLE

	Rises from her burning coffin, screams and tries to run
	through the fire but Louis slashes her down with the
	scythe and she goes down screaming, her dress in
	flames.

				ESTELLE
		Stop him. It's morning. The
		sunlight. Stop him.

	Others rise, choking in the smoke. Screams from
	everywhere. They are burning.

	Louis backs up the stairs to the -


	DUNGEON

	He can see there a thin pale light under Armand's
	bolted door. Suddenly -


	SANTIAGO

	Comes at him from behind. Louis turns. Santiago rushes
	him in a blur. Louis swings the scythe, too fast to see
	what he himself is doing. Santiago's head streaming
	blood flies through the air.

	The body drops, flapping its arms.

	SCREAMS come from everywhere.

	Another vampire rushes burning towards Louis. He
	decapitates him in turn. Then he staggers into Armand's
	cell, and bars the door the connects it to the ballroom
	behind him. He staggers to the outer door. There is a
	thin strip of daylight, beneath the door, blinding him.
	He throws it open, and staggers into the daylight.


	EXT. THEATRE DES VAMPIRES - DAWN

	Louis staggers out of the burning theatre, into the
	thin daylight. Great gusts of smoke cover the street.
	He staggers through the daylight, weakening, about to
	fall, when through the clouds of smoke comes -


	A MAGNIFICENT HEARSE

	As in a dream, driven by Armand's human boy. The door
	of the hearse opens. Through the curtains enclosing the
	interior, we see Armand. He reaches a hand out to Louis
	and pulls him inside.

	The hearse vanishes through the smoke, leaving the
	spectacle of the burning theatre.


	EXT. THEATRE DES VAMPIRES - TWILIGHT

	The gutted Theatre and ballroom, the roof collapsed,
	exposed to the evening sky. The life of Paris goes on
	around it, oblivious.


	INT. LOUVRE - NIGHTS LATER

	It is already a museum by this time and Louis and
	Armand, fancily dressed and composed, walk through it.
	They stop by a Gericault - The Wreck of the Medusa.

				LOUIS
		You didn't even warm them, did you?

				ARMAND
		No.

				LOUIS
		And yet you knew what I would do.

				ARMAND
		I knew. I rescued you, didn't I?
		From the terrible dawn.

				LOUIS
		You were their leader. They trusted
		you.

				ARMAND
		You made me see their failings,
		Louis. You made me look at them
		with your eyes.

	He looks at Louis affectionately.

				ARMAND
		Your melancholy eyes...

				LOUIS
		What a pair we are. We deserve each
		other, don't we?

				ARMAND
		We are a pair, and that's what
		counts.

	Armand and Louis walk slowly through the Louvre
	together. Camera follows them for a while, then comes
	to rest on a sunrise by Turner.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		We left Paris shortly after. For
		years we wandered. Greece, Egypt,
		all the ancient lands. Then, out of
		curiosity, perhaps, boredom, who
		knows what, I took him home, to my
		America...


	INT. MOVIE THEATRE - NIGHT

	A deco cinema of the twenties. Louis and Armand,
	dressed in the style of the period walk down the aisle
	through the crowded seats.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		And there, a technological wonder
		allowed me see sunrise, for the
		first time in two hundred years...

	On the screen, Murnau's "Sunrise", in black and white.
	We see a montage of sunrises, from a whole range of
	movies, in black and white.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		And what sunrises! Seen as the
		human eye could never see them. We
		would sit in the dark, night after
		night among nameless humans,
		entranced with the miracle of
		light. Silver at first, then as the
		years progressed in tones of
		purple, red and my long-lost
		blue...

	The SUNRISES continue, in color now, and the
	backgrounds in them change to the fifties.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		And in time parted. We had become
		so alike, we both wanted the
		certainties of loneliness once
		more.

	The lights come up in a different theatre. Louis
	sitting there, alone, in a half empty theatre, dressed
	in the clothes of the fifties. He rises, exits with the
	others.


	EXT. NEW ORLEANS STREET - NIGHT

	Cars rushing by, twentieth-century madness. Louis
	emerges from the theatre, walks through the streets.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		I had returned to new Orleans. As
		soon as I smelt the air, I knew I
		was home. There was sadness there,
		rich, almost sweet, like the
		fragrance of jasmine. I walked the
		streets, savoring it like a long
		lost perfume...


	EXT. GARDEN DISTRICT - NIGHT

	Louis walks past the many Greek Revival Mansions.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		And then on Prytania Street, only
		blocks from the Lafayette cemetery
		I caught the scent of death and it
		wasn't coming from the graves...

	CAMERA PANS OVER white-walled Lafayette cemetery and
	its surrounding mansions.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		The scent grew stronger as I
		walked. Old death. A scent too
		faint for mortals to detect.

	Louis sees rats darting across the street. They rush
	into a great overgrown garden surrounding a ruined
	mansion. No lights.

	Louis stops at a rusted gate. He forces it open and
	enters -


	A VERITABLE JUNGLE

	Of overgrown rose and oak tree and wisteria. he sees a
	faint glimmer of light coming from a distant glass
	window of a huge Greek Revival house. He approaches
	then he sees -


	OLD SHRIVELLED CORPSE

	Of a man, long dead and dried up, snagged in the thorny
	rosevines.


	LOUIS

	Looks around. Walks on. Sees another corpse, almost
	nothing but bones, sinking into the wet earth, the
	roots of an oak overgrowing it.

	He looks up at the distant light.

	He passes a third corpse, caught in wisteria and rose
	vine, only bones and clothes.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		They were like the doomed princess
		caught in the thorny vines of
		Sleeping Beauty's castle. I knew
		what it meant. A vampire had lured
		them here, but had been to weak to
		get rid of them.

	Louis sees dead rats lying near the steps.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		It spelt weakness, madness, the
		behavior of a dying animal that
		pollutes its own lair.

	Louis treads carefully on the rotted steps. he moves
	along the porch. More dead rats. He sees through the
	floor-length window into rooms lined with stacked
	books. Virtually walled with them. Water seeps down
	from the ceiling, gleaming as it streaks over the
	books. The floors of the splendid rooms are bare,
	except for a rotten French chair by a dead fireplace. A
	single mirror reflecting the moon.

	Dead rats.

	He moves along the porch to the parlor windows. The
	candle flickers inside. He sees -


	HIS POV

	Lestat lying on the floor. He is gaunt to near
	starvation. All his scars are gone, but he is almost a
	skeleton and his eyes are enormous in their sockets.
	His clothes are rags. Blond hair beautiful, as always.


	MALLOY'S ENTRANCES FACE SUPERIMPOSED OVER

				MALLOY (V.O.)
		Lestat escaped the fire!

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		He hadn't even been there. And all
		those years I thought he was dead.


	BACK TO LESTAT

	One tiny candle stands beside him. He reads an early
	comic, from the turn of the century. Without turning
	his head, he speaks.

				LESTAT
		I'm so glad you're here Louis...
		I've dreamed of your coming...

				LOUIS
		Don't try to speak... it's
		alright...

				LESTAT
		I didn't mean to let them do it...
		that Santiago, he tricked me...

				LOUIS
		That's all past, Lestat.

				LESTAT
		Yes. Past... she should never have
		been one of us...

	He turns and looks at Louis. Old, fearful, broken.

				LESTAT
		Still beautiful Louis. You always
		were the strong one.

				LOUIS
		Don't fear me, Lestat. I bring you
		no harm.

				LESTAT
		You've come back to me, Louis?
		You've come again to me?

	Louis shakes his head. A series of police sirens go by,
	piercing the night sky. A helicopter goes overhead. Red
	flashes illuminate his face. Lestat shivers, covers his
	ears. He's terrified. Louis touches him, calming him,
	until the lights pass over.

				LOUIS
		It's only a siren...

				LESTAT
		I can't bear it Louis! The machines
		out there, that fly and that roar!
		And such lights! They make the
		night brighter than the day!

				LOUIS
		And they frighten you?

				LESTAT
		You know I love the dark. But
		there's no dark anymore.

				LOUIS
		It's false light, Lestat. It can't
		harm you...

				LESTAT
		If you stayed with me Louis, I
		could venture out... little by
		little... become the old Lestat.

	Louis shivers. He releases him.

				LOUIS
		I have to go now Lestat...

				LESTAT
		You remember how I was, Louis.. the
		vampire Lestat...

				LOUIS
		Yes. I remember...

	Lestat shivers.

				LESTAT
		I tried to tell you Louis... that
		night in Paris... when I first came
		to you... no-one can refuse the
		dark gift, Louis... not even you.

				LOUIS
		I tried...

				LESTAT
		And the more you tried, the more I
		wanted you... a vampire with your
		beautiful, suffering human heart.
		And how you suffered... I need your
		forgiveness, Louis.

				LOUIS
		You have it...

	Louis walks slowly away from him. Lestat turns back to
	his candle, his magazine.

				LESTAT
		You'll come back, Louis... take me
		out... little by little... and
		maybe I'll be myself again...

	A bluebottle buzzes by him. His hand shoots out and
	grabs it, squeezes the blood.

				LOUIS
			(whispering)
		Yes, Lestat...


	ON LOUIS

	As he walks through the decayed house. His eyes are
	expressionless.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
		And my story ends there. But in
		fact it ended a long time ago, with
		Claudia's ashes in that theatre. My
		love died with her. I never really
		changed after that. What became of
		Lestat I have no idea. I go on,
		night after night. I feed on those
		who cross my path. But all my
		passion went with her yellow hair.
		I ma a spirit with preternatural
		flesh. Detached. unchangeable.
		Empty.


	INT. ROOM. SAN FRANCISCO - NIGHT (PRESENT)

	Malloy, staring at Louis.

				MALLOY
		No... it can't end like that...

				LOUIS
		But it has. There is no more to
		tell.

				MALLOY
		But you talk about passion, about
		longing, about things I'll never
		know in my life! It's still inside
		you, in every syllable you speak!
		And then you tell me it ends like
		that? Just empty?

				LOUIS
		It's over, I'm telling you...

				MALLOY
		You need a new passion, Louis, a
		new reason to feel... what a story
		you've told, you don't understand
		yourself.

	Louis looks at the cassettes on the table.

				LOUIS
		Do what you want with it. Learn
		what you can. Give the story to
		others.

	Malloy rises.

				MALLOY
		You have another chance, Louis.
		Take me! Give me your gift, your
		power...

	Louis is slowly horrified, then outraged and angry.

				LOUIS
		Is this what you want? You ask me
		for this after all I've told you?

				MALLOY
		If I could see what you've seen,
		feel what you've felt I wouldn't
		let it end like this! You need a
		like to the world out there, a
		connection... then it won't end
		like this...

	He stares at Louis.

				MALLOY
		You need me.

	Louis turns away.

				LOUIS
		Dear God. I've failed again,
		haven't I?

				MALLOY
		No...

				LOUIS
		Don't say anymore. The reels are
		still turning. I have but one
		chance to show you the meaning of
		what I've said.

	He looks at the boy. Then suddenly grabs him, lifts him
	off the floor, bares his terrifying fangs and brings
	them to his throat. Malloy screams, in involuntary
	terror.

				LOUIS
		You like it? You like being food
		for the immortals? You like dying?
		Is it beautiful? Is it intense?

	Malloy, now terrified, whispers

				MALLOY
		No... please...

	Louis drops him.

				LOUIS
		Thank God.

	Malloy, falls on the floor, terrified. When he looks
	up, Louis has vanished.

				MALLOY
		Louis... Louis...

	He looks up at the tape. It is still turning.

				MALLOY
		Holy shit...

	He shakes his head. He gets up, and with shaking
	fingers gathers his tapes. He runs out of the room.


	EXT. STREET OUTSIDE - NIGHT

	Malloy running for his car, a convertible. He leaps in
	and screeches off through the night.


	EXT. STREETS - NIGHT

	Malloy whips the car through the tiny streets, in
	sheer, unfocused terror.

				MALLOY
		Jesus...


	EXT. GOLDEN GATE BRIDGE - NIGHT

	Malloy driving with streams of traffic over the bridge.
	He breathes deeply, to calm himself. He takes a tape
	from his pocket, and with still shaking hands, sticks
	it in the deck.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
			(tape)
		1791. That's when it happened. I
		was twenty-four. Younger then you
		are now.

	Suddenly a bony hand shoots out from the back seat,
	pulls his neck backwards -


	LESTAT

	Sinks his teeth in his neck.


	MALLOY'S HANDS

	On the wheel, shaking, shuddering, losing their grip.


	MALLOY'S EYES

	Bulging, as the life drains out of him. Lestat sucking
	him like a rat.


	THE WHEEL

	Swinging free of Malloy's dying hands.


	THE CAR

	Veers wildly into oncoming traffic.


	LESTAT

	Drinks regardless.


	A TRUCK

	Coming towards them, about to crush the car.


	LESTAT'S BONY HAND

	Grabs the wheel, jerks it as he drinks.


	THE CAR

	Misses the truck by inches.


	LESTAT

	Throws Malloy to one side, climbs into the front seat.

	The tape is playing.

				LOUIS (V.O.)
			(tape)
		My invitation was open to anyone.
		Sailors, whores, thieves. But it
		was a vampire that accepted...


	ON LESTAT

	At the wheel, the corpse of Malloy in the passenger
	seat. He smiles. We can see the blood renewing him.

				LESTAT
		Dear Louis... will I ever forget?


	EXT. GOLDEN GATE BRIDGE - NIGHT

	Lestat drives on, the car a tiny speck against the
	bridge, the sea, the sky beyond, with the first fingers
	of light spreading through it.

									 FADE OUT



	THE END



Interview with the Vampire



Writers :   Anne Rice  Neil Jordan
Genres :   Drama  Horror


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