FANTASTIC MR. FOX
Roald Dahl, Wes Anderson & Noah Baumbach
March 4, 2007
EXT. WOODS. DAY
An apple tree stands alone at the top of a hill. A handsome
fox dressed in an Edwardian-style navy velvet suit leans
against it with his arms folded and his legs crossed, chewing
on a reed of wild grass. He holds an apple core in his paw.
He spits out a seed. He looks off across a meadow that
descends into the valley below.
A female fox strides briskly up the hill. Her coat is a
paler, especially beautiful shade of fox-red, and she wears
men's trousers and a dark tunic. Fox says as she approaches:
What'd the doctor say?
Nothing. Supposedly, it's just a twenty-
four hour bug. He gave me some pills.
I told you. You probably just ate some
Fox brushes the fur on Mrs. Fox's ears with his paws. They
walk together along the crest of the hill to a fork in the
path. Fox points:
Should we take the short cut or the
Let's take the short cut.
But the scenic route is so much prettier.
OK, let's take the scenic route.
Great. It's actually slightly quicker,
Fox throws his apple core away over his shoulder and dances a
quick circle around Mrs. Fox, wrapping his arm around her
waist extravagantly and making her laugh as they start off
down the scenic route.
EXT. FARM. DAY
A rustic cottage surrounded by a small barn, a tin silo, and
a rickity windmill. There is a sheep in a little pasture. A
sign on a rail says Berkus Squab. Fox and Mrs. Fox watch from
the bushes outside a fence.
What is a squab?
You know what a squab is. It's like a
pigeon, I suppose. Anyway, it's a type of
bird we can eat.
Fox motions toward the edge of the property.
Should we go through the hole under the
horse fence or climb the rail over the
Well, I guess the horse fence would be a
But the bridle path puts us out right
next to the squab shack.
Mrs. Fox hesitates. She fiddles with her paws. She nods
nervously. She shakes slightly. Fox looks at her funny.
What's wrong? I've never seen you like
this. You're acting all skittish. Don't
worry. I've been stealing birds for a
living since before I could trot.
OK, let's take the --
No, we'll do the horse fence. You gave me
the scenic route already.
Fox flashes a smile. He says suddenly:
By the way, you look unbelievably
beautiful tonight. You're practically
glowing. Maybe it's the lighting.
Mrs. Fox is, in fact, glowing, albeit ever so slightly. She
stares at Fox enigmatically. Fox touches his paw to her
(NOTE: an alternate version of Mrs. Fox will be used for this
shot which can be literally lit from within.)
With the speed, grace, and precision of athletes, Fox and
Mrs. Fox: dart through a hole under a painted fence; race
along a thin trail next to a garage; crawl beneath a window
where a blonde woman serves an early dinner, dealing
hamburgers like playing cards to three little, blond
children; creep past a doghouse where a golden retriever
sleeps with an airline sleeping mask over his eyes; and
shimmy over a doorway outside a workshop where a blond,
bearded farmer hacks into a stump with a hatchet, completely
pulverizing it into sawdust. They arrive in front of a wooden
shed. Fox whistles sharply with a half-chirp and performs a
rapid reverse-flip with a flourish.
Fox lifts a loose board. He looks to Mrs. Fox and puts his
finger to his lips for her to be quiet. She shrugs
impatiently. They duck inside.
They come back out. Each holds a dead, bloody pigeon in
his/her teeth. They start to run away. Fox looks up above
them. He stops. He frowns. He takes the pigeon out of his
mouth and says curiously, pointing toward the sky:
What's that? I think that's a fox-trap!
Look at this.
Get away from there.
Is it spring-loaded? Yeah...
(pointing to different spots)
I guess if you come from over there, and
you're standing at the door to the squab
shack, this little gadget probably
triggers the --
(gesturing to Mrs. Fox)
Move out of the way, darling. That's
right where it's going to land.
Mrs. Fox runs back to Fox and tugs at his arm.
Come on! Stop it! Let's go!
Fox pulls on a little, hanging wire. A chain unrolls rapidly
from a pulley, and a steel cage falls slap down on top of
them. A small tag on the base of it says Badoit et Fils. Fox
and Mrs. Fox stand motionless, side by side, in disbelief.
No, it just falls straight down right
here, doesn't it? I guess it's not spring-
Sounds come from around the farm: the dog barks, doors open,
voices yell, lights come on. Mrs. Fox turns to Fox and says
Fox stares at Mrs. Fox. He is confused but moved.
Wow. We're going to have a cub. Honey,
that's great news!
If we're still alive tomorrow morning, I
want you to find another line of work.
Pause. Fox nods.
A wide shot of the entire valley. There are thick woods,
green and yellow fields, two ponds, a small village, and a
river running through the middle.
2 YEARS LATER ( 12 Fox-Years)
EXT. HOLE. DAY
The entrance to a tunnel under a dirt mound covered with
INT. HOLE. DAY
A small, comfortable kitchen off a living room with two
bedrooms behind it. Fox sits at the kitchen table reading a
newspaper called the Gazette. His fur has gone grey at the
temples, and he now wears a dark, double-breasted, pin-
striped suit with a conservative necktie. Mrs. Fox stands at
the counter-top stirring something in a bowl with a whisk.
She is dressed in a paint-splattered, cream-colored,
A column in the newspaper with Fox's picture at the top of
it. The caption reads: Fox about Town with Fantastic Mr. Fox.
Does anybody actually read my column? Do
your friends ever talk about it?
Of course. In fact, Rabbit's ex-
girlfriend just said to me last week, "I
should read Foxy's column," but they
don't get the Gazette.
(yelling into the next room)
Ash! Let's get cracking!
Why would they? It's a rag-sheet.
I want to say I hate my job, but that
would make it seem more important to me
than I want people to think it is.
Mrs. Fox puts down her bowl and starts slicing a loaf of
bread. A small, narrow fox cub comes out of one of the
bedrooms wearing white pants and no shirt. His hair is
smashed all onto one side sticking up wrong. He is Ash.
You're not sick.
I have a temperature.
Mrs. Fox goes quickly over to Ash and puts her paw to his
You don't have a temperature.
Ash turns away and says as he goes back into his bedroom:
I don't want to go.
Hurry up. You're going to be late.
Mrs. Fox goes back into the kitchen and starts making toast
and coffee. Fox whispers to her:
I love the way you handled that.
Mrs. Fox looks at Fox sideways. She says loudly to Ash:
Your cousin Kristofferson's coming first
thing tomorrow morning. I want you to be
extra nice to him, because he's going
through a very hard time right now, OK?
Ash comes back out of his bedroom. He now wears a white
cardigan and white socks with his white pants tucked into
them. He says aggressively:
Where's he going to sleep?
We're going to make a bed for him in your
I can't spare the space. Put him in Dad's
Fox says without looking up from his newspaper:
Dad's study is occupied by Dad.
Ash goes back into his bedroom. Fox lowers his newspaper. He
looks around the room. He says to Mrs. Fox:
I don't want to live in a hole anymore.
It makes me feel poor.
Mrs. Fox stops buttering the toast. She looks to Fox and says
We are poor -- but we're happy.
Fox twists his paw in the air, indicating:
Comme-ci, comme-ga. Anyway, the views are
better above ground.
Mrs. Fox nods. She brings Fox a plate of toast and a cup of
coffee. Fox takes her paw and says:
I'm seven non-fox-years old now. My
father died at seven and a half. I don't
want to live in a hole anymore, and I'm
going to do something about it.
Fox kisses Mrs. Fox's paw. He suddenly eats three slices of
toast in a second and a half, savagely but neatly. He stands
and picks up his cup of coffee.
Well, I'm off.
Fox throws back the last of his coffee, kisses Mrs. Fox on
the back of her neck, grabs his briefcase, tucks his
newspaper under his arm, and walks to the door. He shouts
Have a good day, my darlings!
Ash comes out the bedroom again. He has now added a white
cape to his ensemble and is in the middle of brushing his
teeth. There is toothpaste all over his mouth. He waves
briefly to Fox and goes back into his bedroom. Fox looks
What's he wearing?
Mrs. Fox shrugs. She smiles sadly and waves to Fox. Fox waves
back. He starts to go out but pauses to look down at a folded
up section of his newspaper.
A clipping from the real estate section. There is a
photograph of a wide, sprawling beech tree at the top of a
hill. A caption below it reads:
Tree Living, Great Views, Classic Beech
INT. TREE. DAY
A door opens into a wide, low space with peeling paint. There
is an old chair against the wall, a bare light bulb hanging
from the ceiling, and a layer of dust over everything. A
skinny weasel in a khaki outfit immediately starts in as Fox
comes into the living room:
Obviously, it's first growth, indigenous.
Original dirt floor, good bark, skipping
stone hearth --
Weasel is interrupted by a loud banging clank. He and Fox
peer into the next room. A heavy-set opossum with a cowlick
tinkers with some pipes under the kitchen sink. He is Kylie.
Weasel snaps at him:
What'd I tell you? I'm showing the
property. You're not supposed to be here.
(checking his watch)
Oh, cuss. What time is it? I'm sorry.
Weasel sighs. He waves his arm in Kylie's direction and says
distractedly, slightly annoyed:
This is Kylie. He's the super.
(aside to Fix)
He's a little --
Weasel makes a fluttering gesture with his paw. Fox nods. He
points at a bucket on the floor next to Kylie among bolts,
tools, and washers.
What's in the bucket, Mr. Kylie?
Just minnows. You want one?
Certainly. Thank you.
Kylie reaches into his bucket and hands Fox a live, wriggling
minnow. Fox swallows it whole.
Fox stares out the window at three sprawling poultry
compounds in the distance. Black smoke pours out of a
farmhouse chimney on each property. A sign on a water tower
in the first compound reads Boggis Farms and has a picture of
a chicken on it. A sign on a silo in the second compound
reads Bunce Industries and has a picture of a goose on it. A
sign on a windmill in the third compound reads Bean, inc.
(since 1976) and has a picture of a turkey with an apple on
Weasel says pointedly from across the room:
May I ask what you do for a living, Mr.
Fox's eyes narrow as he looks out, entranced, with his mouth
slightly open. He says almost inaudibly:
I used to steal birds, but now I'm a
Oh, sure. I've seen your by-line.
Fox snaps out of his reverie and says suddenly:
Good afternoon, gentlemen.
Fox shakes hands abruptly with Weasel and starts across the
room. Weasel is about to ask something when Fox stops in the
doorway, looks back, and says:
Oh, and Kylie -- thank you for the
minnow. It was superb.
Kylie smiles. Fox exits.
EXT. RIVER. DAY
A beaver dam across a bend in a fast stream. A still pond
sits above it. There is an entrance tunnel tucked beneath a
INT. BEAVER DAM. DAY
A large room of twig, stick, and mud construction. A card on
the door reads Badger, Beaver, and Stoat, L.L.P, Attorneys at
Law. An anxious badger sits at his desk reviewing some
documents. Fox paces the floor with his hands clasped behind
Don't buy this tree, Foxy. You're
borrowing at nine and a half, which
stinks like cuss, plus moving into the
most dangerous neighborhood in the
country for someone of your type of
You're exaggerating, Badger.
Bull-cuss! I'm sugar-coating it, man!
This is Boggis, Bunce, and Bean! Three of
the meanest, nastiest, ugliest farmers in
the history of this valley!
An uneasy otter secretary peers in at them from the outer
office. Fox looks intrigued.
Really? Tell me about them.
Silence. Badger sighs. He loosens his tie and settles in.
A fat man with a huge moustache. He wears a tweed suit which
stretches at the buttons so much that they look like they are
about to snap off. He holds a carbine rifle. He stands in
front of his farm, which contains row upon row of chicken
houses. He has an ugly face. He is Boggis.
Walter Boggis is a chicken farmer.
Probably the most successful in the
INT. BOGGIS' KITCHEN. DAY
Boggis sits at a chopping block tearing into a boiled chicken
with a fork and a meat cleaver.
He's unbelievably fat -- which maybe is
genetic -- but he also eats three boiled
chickens smothered with dumplings every
day for breakfast, lunch, supper, and
dessert. That's twelve in total, per
Boggis' ear. Furry black and white hairs grow out of it. A
fly buzzes around, lands on it, and crawls inside. Boggis
sticks his pinky in after it and scratches.
He never takes a bath, as a result of
which his ear holes are clogged with all
kinds of muck and wax and bits of chewing
gum and dead flies and so on.
A short, overweight man with one slightly wandering eye. He
wears overalls and a cap. He holds a twelve-gauge shotgun. He
stands in front of his farm, which consists of several long
buildings in rows like a factory. He has a nasty face. He is
Nathan Bunce is a duck and goosefarmer.
He owns about 2 million ducksand 500,000
geese. You might say he's kind ofa pot-
bellied dwarf of some kind.
EXT. SWIMMING POOL. DAY
Bunce stands up to his nose in water. The depth reads 4FT.
He's so short his chin would probably be
under water in the shallow end of any
swimming pool on the planet.
INT. BUNCE'S KITCHEN. DAY
Bunce sits on two stacked telephone books on a chair. He guts
a dead goose, cutting out its liver and mashing it with a
fork. A plate of doughnuts cools on the table.
He eats only doughnuts with smashed-up
goose livers injected into them.
A tall, skinny man in a long trench-coat. He holds a Luger
pistol. He stands in front of his farm, which is an apple
orchard that stretches over thousands of acres. He has a mean
face. He is Bean.
Franklin Bean is a turkey and apple
farmer. He keeps his birds in an orchard
BADGER (V.0.) (cont'd)
where they run around squawking and
gobbling, surrounded by apples.
Bean aims his Luger and shoots a humming bird. Crazy turkeys
run about among the trees.
INT. BEAN'S SHED. DAY
Bean works at a moonshine-type cider still, boiling chemicals
and sipping from a bottle.
He's probably anorexic, because he never
eats anything. He's on a liquid diet of
strong, alcoholic cider, which he makes
from his apples. He's as skinny as a
pencil, as smart as a whip -- and easily
the biggest cusshole I've ever met in my
Fox and Badger in Badger's office.
In summation, I think you just got to not
do it, man. That's all.
I understand what you're saying, and your
comments are valuable, but I'm going to
ignore your advice.
Badger leaps out of his chair and slams the office door. He
points his finger at Fox and screams:
The cuss you are!
The cuss am I?
Fox jumps up and points back at Badger, screaming:
Don't cussing point at me!
Are you cussing with me?
Do I look like I'm cussing with you?
Fox and Badger begin to snarl and snap savagely, knocking
into the furniture as they circle around the room pointing in
each other's faces. Suddenly, they calm down all at once,
sighing deeply. Pause.
One last thing: something's probably
about to happen to me at work which I
can't put my finger on but have a funny
feeling about. How can I protect myself
Are you about to get fired?
A door with a frosted glass window. Letters painted on it
read Gazette, Editor-in-Chief, Phillip Squirrel. Fox's
silhouette stands across from that of a small squirrel
sitting at a desk. The squirrel's silhouette says in a
Slash I quit. Here's my letter of
Fox's silhouette throws an envelope onto the squirrel's desk.
Two muskrats in orange moving company uniforms unloads boxes
and furniture from a wagon and carries them into the tree.
Fox holds open the front door and barks orders at them.
Two muskrats in white painter's uniforms paints the walls of
the living room and the trim around the windows with rollers
and brushes. Fox stands on the drop-cloth and barks orders at
Two muskrats in blue electrician's uniforms work in the
kitchen. Mrs. Fox watches over their shoulders and barks
orders at them.
Fox holds up a pair of flowered curtains in front of a
window. He looks to Mrs. Fox. She stares at the curtains
thoughtfully. She raises an eyebrow.
Fox and Mrs. Fox sit in the windowsill looking out at the
sunset. Ash stands in-between them. The flowered curtains
wave in the breeze. Fox puffs on a pipe. Ash blows a soap
bubble. Mrs. Fox puts out her paw and a butterfly lands on
it. She smiles at Fox. He puts his arm around her. He raises
a pair of binoculars to his eyes.
A binocular shot of an industrial shack with Boggis Chicken
House #1 stencilled on the front of it.
Fox lowers the binoculars. His eyes sparkle.
EXT. TREE. DAY
Ash stands poised on a high branch over an inflatable
swimming pool printed with a red-tartan plaid pattern. He
wears over-sized swim trunks with a pattern of acorns printed
on them. Fox sits in the grass eating an apple below with
Mrs. Fox. She is painting at an easel. Ash yells:
Watch this, Dad!
Fox looks up. Ash leaps into the air and does a spectacularly
awkward back-flip during which he appears to have four arms
and three legs randomly attached to his body, flailing
wildly. He hits the water by the side of his head and smacks
into the surface back-first with a pained yelp. Fox grimaces.
He claps mildly.
(NOTE: an alternate version of Ash with four arms and three
legs randomly attached to his body will be used for this
Good jump, Ash! Remember to keep your
Fox looks at Mrs. Fox's canvas. It is a picture of the pond
and landscape in severe weather with black clouds and
lightning bolts. It is signed Felicity Fox. Fox raises an
Still painting thunderstorms, I see.
Fox sees a small, Samsonite suitcase on the ground next to a
pair of yellow sneakers. He frowns.
Whose suitcase is that?
A boy's voice shouts from the high tree branch:
Hello, everyone! Good afternoon!
Fox, Mrs. Fox, and Ash look up, surprised. A second Fox cub
stands poised on the edge of the limb. He is taller, leaner,
sleeker, and it is immediately apparent even by his posture
infinitely more graceful than Ash. He is Kristofferson. He
wears a professional Speedo with a patch on it that says Swim
Team. Fox brightens.
Kristofferson! Welcome to our little
tree! I see you brought your swimming
Kristofferson steps off the branch and performs a reserved
but perfect jack-knife. He enters the water splashlessly. Fox
leaps to his feet, applauding with his paws above his head,
whistling and hollering:
Look at that! This kid's a natural! I'm
Kristofferson smiles modestly and shrugs. Ash stares at him
stonily. Fox turns to Mrs. Fox.
Plus, he knows karate.
INT. LIVING ROOM. EVENING
Fox sits in his armchair reading the Gazette. Ash sits on a
braided rug on the floor beside him reading a comic book
called The Adventures of White Cape. On the cover, there is a
picture of a ferret leaping off a motorcycle. Mrs. Fox is in
the kitchen in the background flattening a hunk of dough with
a rolling pin. Kristofferson is in the next room practicing
tae-kwon-do. He wears khaki shorts, yellow sneakers, and a
blue, short-sleeved, button-down shirt.
Do you think I'm an athlete?
(without looking up)
What are you talking about?
Well, you know, I think I'm an athlete,
and sometimes I feel like you guys don't
see me that way.
What's the sub-text here?
Ash thinks for a minute. He looks at Kristofferson in the
next room. Kristofferson is now sitting Indian-style on the
floor meditating. His paws are turned upward with his thumbs
touching his index fingers forming a ring. Ash says loudly to
Mrs. Fox in the kitchen:
How long is Kristofferson supposed to
stay with us?
Until your uncle gets better.
Right, but roughly how long do we plan to
give him on that? Double-pneumonia isn't
even really that big of a deal, is it?
In the background, Kristofferson stands up again and starts
practicing violent karate kicks. Mrs. Fox leans into the
doorway and whispers forcefully:
As a matter of fact, it is. He's lucky to
be alive. Now --
Right, but --
Kristofferson yells suddenly as he does a spinning double-
kick with a chop:
Everyone looks startled. Kristofferson resumes his tae-kwon-
do practice with an angry, wounded look on his face. Mrs. Fox
Lower your voice, Ash.
EXT. TREE. NIGHT
Fox and Kylie sit in a porch swing on one of the middle
branches of Fox's tree. They drink cups of coffee. Crickets
Kids are crazy, aren't they? You got to
try it, though. Raising a family.
Yeah. Sometimes I feel like maybe I
What do you think of this tree, by the
way? It's great, huh?
Yeah. No, I was just saying how some-
I have one last part of what I was about
OK. Go ahead.
I'm going broke. You want to help me
steal some chickens?
Fox's study, the next morning. A map of the valley with notes
and arrows written all over it is spread across a desk. The
door is closed with a towel jammed under it. A cricket match
plays loudly on the radio. Fox sits in his armchair. Kylie
sits in a creaky rocking chair.
I used to do this professionally, and I
was very successful at it. I had to get
out of it for personal reasons, but I've
decided to secretly quit my job slash got
fired to pursue it again. I'm bringing
you in as my secretary and personal
This is actually kind of a big deal, so
don't just say, "OK!"
OK. Well, thank you.
(clearing is throat)
I'm going totape this formyrecords,so
don't make a lot of sounds --meaning
Well, maybe we ought to turn off the
radio, then. That's noisier than --
I don't want people to eavesdrop on us,
Kylie. Let me just tell this.
Kylie stops rocking. Fox presses record on a tape recorder.
Master Plan. Phase one. Side A.
That night. Fox stands on a rock at the edge of the woods
looking through his binoculars. He lowers them and gives a
hand-signal. Kylie joins him, and they start out along the
moonlit ridge. Fox wears a dark car-coat and a black cap.
Kylie has on a navy ski-hat.
We'll start with Boggis' Chicken House
#1. His only security is a few old
hunting beagles and a low stone wall. Now
a word about beagles: never look a beagle
directly in the eye. And if --
Fox and Kylie in Fox's study earlier that afternoon. Kylie
Beagles aren't so tough.
Yeah? Well, first of all, one of these
beagles has chronic rabies, which he's on
medication for, and if you get bit by him
you have to get shots in your stomach for
six months. And, second -- listen, I'm
not going to justify this to you. Just
pay attention and stop interrupting me.
I'm taping this.
EXT. RAVINE. NIGHT
Fox and Kylie shimmy down a steep embankment and cross a
I picked some blueberries, butterflied
them with a scalpel, and laced each one
with ten milligrams of high-potency
Fox's paws meticulously sprinkle a powdered mickey into a
dissected blueberry and stitch it shut with red thread.
Enough to tranquilize a charging gorilla.
Fox and Kylie in Fox's study earlier that afternoon. They now
How do we make them eat it?
(smiling, with utter certainty)
Beagles love blueberries.
EXT. RIDGE. NIGHT
Fox and Kylie push through a bramble and climb to the top of
an elderberry bush. Fox looks through his binoculars.
If we approach with the wind in our
faces, we'll smell the chicken livers on
Boggis' breath from at least fifty yards
EXT. BARNYARD. DAY
Seventy-five chickens stand around quietly but anxiously,
darting wildly nervous looks at one another. They eat bits of
grain off the ground.
Remember: they aren't very smart, but
they're incredibly paranoid -- so always
kill a chicken in one bite.
Fox and Kylie in Fox's study earlier that afternoon. They now
drink whiskey sours. Fox repeats:
One bite, get it?
Fox waits for Kylie to respond. Kylie does not. Fox frowns.
Are you listening to me? I look into your
eyes and I can't tell whether you're
getting anything I'm saying.
Kylie stares at Fox vacantly. He shrugs.
(NOTE: an alternate set of eyeballs will be used for any
shots indicating Kylie's vacant look.)
EXT. MEADOW. NIGHT
Fox and Kylie move swiftly through the tall grass. Fox pauses
to sniff the air. He nods.
A few beagles, as we discussed, but we're
ready for that.
Fox and Kylie cross a dirt lane and come out of a shallow
ditch. Fox licks the pinky of his paw and holds it up in the
You feel that? The wind's in our faces.
Kylie touches his face with his paw. He nods. Fox and Kylie
run along the edge of the ditch. Kylie says casually:
Yeah, back in the old days, didn't they
used to do a thing where if somebody saw
a wolf, and --
Fox stops in his tracks. His eyes dart about. Kylie looks at
Oh, nothing? Never mind.
Fox and Kylie veer off into shorter grasses. Fox points
ahead, regaining his composure:
Here comes the low stone wall. Not a
Fox and Kylie climb over a low stone wall and find themselves
at the base of a chain-link fence eleven feet high.
This is a chain-link fence, I guess. Did
I not remember this? Maybe it's new.
What the cuss? Where'd this giant fence
come from? We had a master plan!
Kylie motions to a yellow, plywood lightning bolt posted to
What's this lightning bolt stand for?
Give me a second! I said, "Let's pause"!
Pause. Fox pulls himself together. He turns to look at the
plywood lightning bolt.
That, I guess, hypothetically, could mean
maybe this fence might be electric.
Well, I just hope it doesn't mean
thunder. I have a phobia of that.
Fox and Kylie climb a tree and crouch at the end of one of
its branches. Fox produces a zip-loc bag filled with
blueberries with white thread stitched into them.
Fox puts a blueberry into the end of a straw and shoots it
out into the barnyard.
The blueberry landing on the ground in front of Chicken House
#1. A beagle approaches it and sniffs at it. He eats it. He
looks very pleased. He falls over, out cold.
Fox with an ecstatic expression on his face. He rapidly
shoots more and more blueberries across the barnyard. Beagles
eat blueberries and fall over, one after another. Fox and
Kylie drop down into the barnyard and head for Chicken House
#1. Fox whispers excitedly as they run:
Beagles love blueberries! Didn't I tell
you? The master plan's working again!
Kylie raises his fist enthusiastically and trips over an
unconscious beagle. He picks himself up quickly, and they
weave among the rest of the beagles. They reach the entrance
to the chicken house, open the door, and duck inside.
Pause. There is an eruption of crazed squawking, screaming,
and fighting from inside. The chicken house rumbles. Lights
jolt on across the compound. An alarm goes off. Voices yell.
The chicken house door swings open again, and Fox and Kylie
emerge among a cloud of feathers. Fox carries two dead
chickens, and Kylie has one live one. Fox yells:
I said one bite, cuss it!
I'm trying! I have a different kind of
teeth from you! I'm an opossum!
Kylie tries to bite the chicken on the neck. The chicken is
unharmed. Kylie shrugs. Fox kills the chicken with one quick
flick of the jaws. Kylie looks horrified.
That's so grisly! There's blood and
We're killing chickens! There's going to
be blood in this story! Follow me!
Fox and Kylie dash to the electric fence. They stop in front
of it. Kylie looks to Fox.
What's the master escape plan?
Fox hesitates, confused. A gunshot fires from among the
chicken houses. Fox shouts to Kylie:
Follow me again!
Fox and Kylie run back across the barnyard, past the beagles
as they begin to wake up and stagger around. Farmhands
appear, loading shotguns and running into the confusion. Fox
and Kylie race by, unnoticed, among them. They dart into the
house through a flap in the back door. The lights are out in
the kitchen. They take a moment, breathing hard in the
darkness. Kylie shakes his head in disbelief.
Wow. That was amazing. How did we do
that? We ran the other way or something.
What happens now?
I have no idea.
Fox opens the door-flap a crack. He looks out and sees Boggis
opening the front gate to let out his beagles and farmhands,
barking and shooting, as they search for the intruders. Fox
shouts to Kylie:
Holy cuss! They opened the gate! Follow
Lightning quick, Fox and Kylie burst out through the door-
flap, race across the barnyard, and dart through the open
gate. Up the road, Boggis screams furiously as he runs with
his pack of beagles and farmhands. Fox and Kylie fly into the
bushes. As they race through the underbrush Fox says
Let's hit the five and dime on the way
home! We need to make some fake price
tags and wrap these chickens in wax-paper
so it looks like we got them at the
Fox and Kylie howl ecstatically.
A fox's paw lifts a silver dome off a perfectly roasted
chicken with an apple in its mouth.
Fox and Mrs. Fox sit at a candle-lit table eating chicken and
drinking wine. Ash, Kristofferson, and Kylie sit at a
slightly miniature table eating chicken and drinking milk.
Fox laughs hysterically as he tells his wife a story. Wine
comes out of his nose.
Fox and Kylie dash out the door of Boggis' Chicken House #7
carrying three more dead chickens. Lights jolt on. Farmhands
run out firing shotguns. Fox and Kylie escape through a hole
cut into the electric fence.
Fox and Kylie dash out the window of Bunce's Poultry Barn C
carrying two dead ducks and a goose. Alarms ring. Farmhands
run out firing pistols. Fox and Kylie escape through a hole
knocked into a brick wall.
Fox and Kylie dash out the gates of Bean's Apple Orchard XII
carrying two dead turkeys and a basket of apples. Automatic
doors close. Farmhands run out firing rifles. Fox and Kylie
escape through a hole chopped into a burning barricade.
Fox and Kylie run full-speed through a clover field in the
dark. The camera zooms in slowly on their faces as they ford
a stream, leap a fallen hawthorn, and cross into the willow
glade. They look exhilarated.
INT. KITCHEN. EVENING
Mrs. Fox studies a crayon price-tag labelled $4 attached to a
wax-paper-wrapped parcel. She opens the parcel and holds up a
dead chicken by the leg. There is a small metal clip around
its ankle. She examines it. She frowns.
Fox comes in, grabs an apple out of a bowl, and starts back
out of the room.
Where'd you get this chicken?
I picked it up at the Five-and-Dime last
night on my way back from --
It's got a Boggis Farms tag around its
Huh. Must've escaped from there before I
INT. DINING ROOM. EVENING
Ash, Kristofferson, and Kylie sit at the children's table
eating dinner. Next to Ash, there is a small, slightly beaten-
up statue of a fox with his front legs raised in the air
holding a medal above his head. Kylie points at it.
This? Nothing. Just some old trophy I won
for being an athlete.
Fox and Mrs. Fox sit at the adults' table. Fox guzzles down a
last sip of wine and says with his mouth full of food:
I'm supposed to cover this book party at
some animal's nest in a tobacco field
down the hill, so me and Kylie are going
to hop over there and give it a whirl.
Don't wait up.
Fox pulls his napkin out of his collar, drops it on the
table, and stands up. Mrs. Fox asks cooly:
What's the book?
Some memoir. I'll get him to sign you a
Fox kisses Mrs. Fox on the cheek. She looks at him
Dinner was --
(doing a little gesture)
EXT. WOODS. NIGHT
Fox and Kylie walk among the trees. They are dressed in their
I spotted a couple of broken burglar bars
underneath the back door to Bean's secret
We're breaking into Bean's house?
Where he lives?
Where he keeps the cider.
Below where he lives.
Ash, dressed in his own prowling outfit, is walking with Fox
and Kylie. Fox stops short:
Where'd you come from? Go back to the
tree and do your homework!
I want to help you steal some cider.
We're going to a book party! And keep
your mouth shut about any cider, because
no one ever said that! Get out of here!
But Dad --
But nothing! You're going to get me in a
lot of trouble!
The three animals stand in silence for a minute. Fox points
to his tree. Ash turns and starts back home. Fox shakes his
Where the cuss does that kid get off? Can
you believe that? How'd he get tipped
off? You think he's going to tell on us?
Fox turns to Kylie. Kylie looks back at him vacantly.
Before we go any further, from now on can
you give me some kind of signal once in a
while just so I know any of this is
getting through to you?
Pause. Kylie makes a slight motion with his paw. Fox
Was that it? OK.
EXT. BARNYARD. NIGHT
Fox and Kylie dart across the yard and around the back of
Bean's farmhouse. Kylie whispers as they run:
One time this wolf --
What's with all the wolf talk? Can we
give it a rest, for once?
Fox climbs onto a garbage pail and pulls open a window
shutter. He and Kylie shimmy in-between two bent burglar
INT. BEAN'S SECRET CIDER CELLAR. NIGHT
A vast, damp, gloomy cellar with hundreds of glass jars
stacked from floor to ceiling. Each jar is marked Cider. Fox
and Kylie come inside and quietly drop to the brick floor.
Look at all this apple juice.
Apple juice? Apple juice? We didn't come
here for apple juice. This is some of the
strongest, finest alcoholic cider money
can buy -- or that can even be stolen. It
burns in your throat, boils in your
stomach, and tastes almost exactly like
pure, melted gold.
Let's crack open one these 'shine jars
and do a shooter.
A match strikes in the darkness. Fox and Kylie look around
the room frantically. On the highest shelf, peering out from
behind a huge jar, they see an enormous rat in a striped
shirt with a lit match in his claw. He puts the flame in his
mouth to snuff it out and holds the matchstick in his teeth.
He is longer than a fox and wiry, but with a small pot-belly.
He wears a black beret and moves like a beatnik.
He takes a draw from a small rubber tube inserted in the neck
of his cider jar. He says with a slightly sinister New
Y'all are trespassin', now. Illegally.
'Round these parts, we don't take kindly
to cider poachers.
Fox and Rat stare at each other. Fox says, finally:
You've aged badly, Rat.
You're gettin' a little long in the
tooth, yourself, partner.
Rat spins around and hurls himself scuttling over a shelf,
down the wall, and through the air onto the brick floor at
Fox's feet. He flicks open a switchblade and brandishes it.
Kylie shrieks and darts into a hole where a brick is missing
in the wall. Fox takes an old-fashioned boxing stance.
How's your old lady doin'?
Kylie peers out from his hole in the wall nervously. Fox and
Rat circle each other slowly.
Do you refer to my wife?
She was the town tart, in her day. Wild
and foot-loose and pretty as a mink
stole. She was a creme brulee -- until
you made an honest woman out of her, Mr.
Kylie says, intrigued, from his hole:
Is that true?
Of course, not. I mean, certainly, she
lived. We all did. It was a different
time. Let's not use a double-standard.
She marched against the --
But town tart?
Rat lunges at Fox with his switchblade. Fox dodges nimbly. He
cocks an eyebrow and smiles:
That was close, Rat. Be careful.
Oh, I'm as careful as a --
A door at the top of the stairs opens suddenly with a loud
creak. Rat and Fox look terrified. They both dart away and
hide behind cider jars.
A heavy-set, middle-aged housekeeper carrying a rolling pin
comes down the stairs and walks straight over to the shelf
where Fox is hiding.
How many jars should I bring up, ma'am?
A strong, almost masculine woman's voice answers from
I don't know. Two, I guess.
The housekeeper grabs the two jars directly next to the one
Fox is hiding behind and tucks them under her arm. Fox tenses
his body. He shivers slightly. A graze of the red fur of his
arm sticks out barely from behind his jar. The housekeeper
He drank three yesterday, ma'am.
All right, take three.
The housekeeper grabs Fox's jar. Fox closes his eyes.
The housekeeper stops with her hand on the neck of Fox's jar.
Three's too many. It's unhealthy. He's
anorexic. Bring two.
The housekeeper lets go of Fox's jar. Fox relaxes slightly.
The housekeeper grabs Fox's jar again. Fox tenses up.
But maybe, just in case --
The housekeeper lets go of Fox's jar and walks away. She goes
back up the stairs and closes the door. Kylie says in the
Oh, my cuss. That was like a scene out of
The door opens again. An exceptionally tall, powerfully built
woman in a black dress and Wellingtons, with grey hair pulled-
back in a bun, bright green eyes, and a meat cleaver tucked
under her apron strings comes swiftly down the stairs. She
eyeballs the corners of the room. She is Mrs. Bean. She says
thickly (in her masculine voice):
To whom it may concern: if I catch a rat
in a black beret drinking Mr. Bean's
secret cider without his express
permission, I intend to chop said rat's
head off, brine it, pickle it, and bake
it in a vermin casserole. I hope this
clarifies my position on the matter.
Sincerely, Evelyn Bean.
Mrs. Bean turns and goes back up the stairs. She closes the
door. Pause. Rat's voice says from the shadows:
Dear Mrs. Bean, your language, while
somewhat purple, is nevertheless
impossible to misinterpret. However --
comma -- given the proximity of said rat
at the moment of your --
The door at the top the stairs opens again. Silence.
Fox and Kylie running away from Bean's farmhouse with two
jars of cider. They both look badly shaken. A gunshot rings
out taking us to:
EXT. BEAN FARMS. NIGHT
Bean is standing darkly in his front doorway. Smoke drifts
from the end of his Luger, pointed at the ceiling. A broken
light bulb hangs from a wire above his head. Boggis and Bunce
sit together on the porch in rocking chairs, startled,
staring at Bean.
I'm going to give a speech, and at the
end of it -- I'm going to throw a twist
into this plot.
Bean lights a cigarette and begins to walk slowly around the
First truth: this is the most ambitious
fox we've ever encountered, bar none.
Bean spins around and shoots out a second light bulb. Boggis
and Bunce look uneasy. Bean continues:
Second truth: the meaning of ambition is
defined in the dictionary.
Bean jumps and rolls and shoots out a third light bulb.
Third truth: the weakness of the
ambitious man is his Achilles heel --
Bean quickly shoots out three more light bulbs behind his
back, over his shoulder, and between his legs. The porch goes
dark. He flicks on a flashlight and points it in his two
colleague's faces. They look scared. Bean says urgently:
-- but I've already figured out where
this fox lives, and tomorrow night we're
going to camp in the bushes, wait for him
to come out of the hole in his tree, and
shoot the cuss to smithereens. How's that
grab you, fellas?
Boggis and Bunce hesitate. They nod and murmur their
INT. FOX'S TREE. NIGHT
Fox and Kylie come quietly into the half-lit kitchen dressed
in their prowling outfits. They walk to the door.
Another book party?
Fox and Kylie turn around, startled. Mrs. Fox sits on a stool
in the darkened pantry.
Woah! I didn't see you. Sitting in the
dark over there. Yeah, no. Actually,
there's a fire. I just got the call. They
said maybe it's arson? I got to interview
the marshall and see what's --
Kylie, is he telling the truth?
I don't want to be put in the middle of
If what I think is happening is
-- it better not be.
Boggis, Bunce, and Bean waiting crouched in the bushes. Bean
licks his finger and holds it up to test the direction of the
wind. He nods, points to his nose, and gives a thumbs-up to
Boggis and Bunce.
EXT. FOX'S TREE. NIGHT
Fox pokes his head up out of his hole. He sniffs once. He
moves an inch forward and stops. He sniffs again. He waits a
moment and listens. He steps out of the hole and says
Nice job covering for me. Next time
A twig snaps. Fox freezes.
Boggis, Bunce, and Bean frozen in the bushes.
The branches of the trees as the wind suddenly changes its
Fox on high alert. He rapidly sniffs the air three times in a
row. He turns to a confused Kylie and says, panicking:
Fox and Kylie spin around and dart back into the hole as
Boggis, Bunce, and Bean open fire wildly from the bushes. A
barrage of bullets and buckshot rips into the tree-bark.
Smoke from the three guns floats upward in the night air.
Boggis, Bunce, and Bean approach the tree. Bean shines his
flashlight on Fox's hole.
In the circle of light on the ground lies the tattered, blood-
stained remains of Fox's tail. Bean picks it up and holds it
in the air in front of Boggis and Bunce.
We got the tail, but we missed the fox.
Pause. Bean takes out his walkie-talkie.
Petey? You and the boys sober up and get
out here on the A.S.A.P. Bring eleven
shovels, three pick-axes, 500 rounds of
ammunition, and a bottle of apple cider.
INT. FOX'S TREE. NIGHT
Mrs. Fox licks the stump of Fox's tail and mends it with
gauze and medical tape. She looks furious. Kylie and the Fox
cubs watch, concerned. Ash says uncertainly:
It'll grow back, won't it?
(shaking his head)
Tails don't grow back, except for
Tails don't grow back. I'm going to be
tail-less for the rest of my life.
Well, anyway, it's not half as bad as
(pointing to Kristofferson)
His dad's got one foot in the grave and
one foot on a banana peel. That's a lot
worse than --
Kristofferson hurls an acorn violently onto the floor. It
ricochets off a wall and into a teacup. Everyone falls
silent. Kristofferson turns away.
Excuse me, everyone. I'm going to go
meditate for half an hour.
Kristofferson walks out of the room. Mrs. Fox looks at Ash
and says angrily:
You've got twenty-nine minutes to come up
with a proper apology.
Ash crosses his arms in front of his chest and stares
straight ahead into space grimly. Fox says suddenly:
What's with the crazy outfit? Why a cape
and the pants tucked into your socks?
Ash does not respond. Fox sighs. Mrs. Fox finishes bandaging
his tail. Fox goes over to the wall and stands with his back
to the room.
I got fired slash quit the Gazette and
started stealing chickens on the sly.
That tail was the first thing I ever
noticed about you. It was easily the most
attractive tail for at least 50 miles in
every direction. It was probably your
single best quality -- and now it's gone
Fox lying in bed staring at the ceiling in the dark next to
Why the cuss didn't I listen my lawyer?
At this point we'll be lucky if we can
flip this tree for half of what we've
already sunk into it.
Fox flips over onto his stomach.
I won't be able to sleep on my back for
six weeks -- and on my stomach I feel
congested. Why the cuss didn't I listen
to my lawyer?
Because you don't listen to anybody.
(sitting up suddenly)
What was that?
What? I said --
There is a quiet scraping sound from above. Fox jumps out of
bed. He hollers:
Wake up! Everybody! They're digging us
There is a scrunch and then a loud thump from above. Mrs. Fox
looks at Fox intensely:
They'll kill the children!
Over my dead body, they will.
That's what I'm saying! You'd be dead,
too, in that scenario!
Well, I'm arguing against that!
What are you talking about?
Why are you yelling at me?
Stop! Stop! Stop!
Fox and Mrs. Fox turn quickly to Kylie standing in the
doorway with a red blanket wrapped around his shoulders. Ash
and Kristofferson stand behind him. They look terrified.
Kylie shouts in a pained voice:
You say one thing, she says another, and
it all changes back again!
The point of a shovel pierces the ceiling. Everyone looks up
and stares in shock. Fox suddenly leaps across the room with
a wild energy, scrambles halfway up a wall, and throws over
I've got it! There's not a moment to
lose! Why didn't I think of this before?
Think of what?
Think of the one thing a fox does quicker
than a man, quicker than any other animal
in the world!
(at the top of his lungs)
Everyone digging furiously. Dirt flies everywhere. The shot
booms down into the ground, among the roots of the tree,
through buried pebbles, layers of soil, and subterranean
1 HOUR LATER
The shot stops at the bottom of a dark hole deep, deep
underground. Mrs. Fox lies on the floor, breathing heavily,
with a lit lantern at her side. The cubs are sprawled out
around her. Kylie leans in the corner with his shirt off tied
around his waist. Fox stands up and clears his throat.
Everyone looks at him.
I think it's time for me to give us a pep
talk and explain some things.
(commencing a speech)
A very long time ago --
May I have a word with you privately?
Well, we're in a hole. Where --
Just on the other side of this mineral
deposit. Follow me.
Fox reluctantly follows Mrs. Fox through a crack in the
bedrock and into a small air-pocket with glittering quartz
walls. She wheels on Fox:
I'm going to lose my temper now.
Well, when --
Mrs. Fox scratches Fox across the face, slicing a quick
sliver into his fur. Fox cringes away with his paws up
protectively. He lowers his paws. His eyes fill with tears.
(NOTE: the scar in Fox's fur never grows back.)
Mrs. Fox takes a deep breath. She says:
Twelve fox-years ago, you made a promise
to me while we were caged inside that fox-
trap that, if we survived, you would
never steal another chicken, goose,
turkey, duck, or squab, whatever they
are. I believed you. Why did you lie to
Because I'm a wild animal.
You're also a husband and a father.
I'm trying to tell you the truth about
I don't care about the truth about
Fox looks down at the ground. He nods and tries to contain
his emotions. Mrs. Fox watches him coldly.
This story is too predictable.
Predictable? Really? What happens in the
In the end, we all die -- unless you
Mrs. Fox walks out of the air-pocket. Fox stands alone in
EXT. FOX'S TREE. DAY
The next morning. There is a large hole in the side of the
hill, under Fox's tree. The ceiling to the living room has
been completely removed. Boggis, Bunce, and Bean stand half-
underground with their heads sticking out of the hole,
breathing hard, with dirty shovels over their shoulders.
Bunce stands on Fox's tiny club chair.
These foxes dig like a bunch of
Franklin? You got another twist for this
Say that again?
I say you got another --
Bean whips out his walkie-talkie and twirls it like a six-
shooter. He presses a button on it and says:
Petey? Get me the current contact info
for Earl Malloy on the A.S.A.P.
Who's Earl Malloy?
What? You mean over at Malloy
Consolidated? Oh, he does rentals.
What does he rent?
Three yellow and black, murderous, brutal bulldozer digging-
tractors with Malloy Consolidated painted on the sides of
them. They make a terrible, high-pitched growling noise and
spit black grease and smoke.
Boggis, Bunce, and Bean stand among the tractors nodding
giddily to each other. They scramble into the drivers' seats
and begin ripping into the hillside. Bunce sits on a
dictionary to see over the dashboard.
Fox, Mrs. Fox, Kylie, Ash, and Kristofferson digging
The tractors grabbing huge chunks of earth and tossing them
into the meadow. Boggis, Bunce, and Bean, drunk with digging,
laugh manically as the controls of their tractors.
Let's kick some fox cuss!
I'm cussing loving this!
Who's hyper-cussing-active now?
Bean throws his tractor into top gear. The teeth of the giant
shovels clank against each other, ripping through the tree's
A temperature gauge with its needle pushing the limits of the
A grizzled, white-haired man in a greasy yellow and black
jumpsuit and coke-bottle protective eyeglasses. A patch on
his pocket says E. Malloy. He watches the farmers digging
crazily with the tractors. Sparks from the mayhem reflect
dancing on his lenses.
These machines weren't made to be handled
The hill with half its earth dug out from under the tree. The
tree still stands precariously above the wild tractors.
The hill now razed with the fallen, old beech tree laying on
its side as the tractors dig deeper.
The tractors almost completely below ground in a deep crater.
A crowd of neighbors and local press from the town has
gathered and watches as the tractors stop digging and rumble
up out of the crater. The motors go quiet. Boggis, Bunce, and
Bean climb down from their tractors. They look angry and
tired. They stand among the workers and onlookers.
A television reporter with an Action 13 camera crew confronts
Farmer, correct me if I'm misreading the
data, you've successfully destroyed the
scenery, but the alleged fox remains at
large. What will you three prominent
farmers do now?
Well, Dan, I can tell you what we're not
going to do. We're not going to let him
Are you concerned about the possibility
I have no further dialogue in this scene.
Bean turns away from the reporter and pulls Boggis and Bunce
aside. He addresses them with calm intensity:
I'm not going home until we smoke this
son-of-a-cuss out his hole, string him up
on a clothesline, and fly him like a
kite. Boggis, how many men have you got
working on your farm?
And I've got thirty-seven. That's 108 men
altogether. Now what do I got here? Two
quitters -- or are you staying with?
That night. A helicopter with a Bean, inc. decal on the side
of it circles the crater scanning the dark terrain with a
searchlight. There are tents, trucks, and 108 men gathered
around the perimeter. They sit on bricks and logs and are
armed with bats, pistols, rifles, shotguns, bows and arrows,
INT. HOLE. NIGHT
Fox, his family, and Kylie lie exhausted on the floor of
their deep hole. The walls are covered with knotted roots and
vines. Fox says to Kylie:
One of those slovenly farmers is probably
wearing my tail as a necktie by now.
You're paranoid, Foxy.
Mrs. Bean sitting in her kitchen watching television next to
an extremely skinny, freckled twelve year-old boy. The boy
points at the screen and laughs to himself:
Look at Dad's tie.
The television set. Bean is on-screen with the Action 13
reporter. He wears a fox-fur necktie.
EXT. CAMP. NIGHT
There is a full moon. Lanterns glow in the farmers' tents. A
group of farmhands sit around a campfire next to the crater.
One of them cooks a chicken on a spit. Another sits on a log
playing a banjo. He is Petey. He sings:
'Bout a handsome little fox
Let me sing you folks a yarn.
Hey, diddle-dee, doddle-do, doodle-dum!
'Twas a splendid little feller
Full of wit 'n' grace 'n' charm.
Say, zippy-zee, yappy-yo, google-gum!
The shot moves past the leathery faces of the other farmhands
as they listen: amused, moved, hungry, tired, charmed,
annoyed, whistling, playing a jew's harp, trying to sing
along but not really knowing the words, etc.
Like any little critter needin'
Vittels for his littl'uns,
Well, he stole, and he cheated,
And he lied to survive.
Doodle-dum, diddle-die, doddle-diddle-
Zippy-zo, zippy-zay, zippy-zappy-
(this verse is spoken:)
Let me take a little tick now
To color in the scene:
'Cross the valley lived three yokels
Name of Boggis, Bunce, and Bean.
(back to singing:)
Now these three crazy jackies
had our hero on the run.
Shot the tail off the cuss
With a fox-shootin' gun.
But that stylish little fox
Was as clever as a whip.
Dug as quick as a gopher
Who was a hyper-ack-a-tive.
Now those three farmers sit
'Twhere there's a hole 'twas once a hill.
Hey, diddle-dee, doddle-do, doodle-dum!
And as far as I can reckon
They're a-settin' up there still.
Way, zippy-zee, yappy-yo, google --
What are you singing, Petey?
Petey stops short. Everyone turns quickly and sees Bean
standing over them in the darkness with his Luger in one hand
and a cigarette in the other. Petey looks nervous.
I don't know. I was just kind of making
it up as I was going along...
Petey trails off. Bean shakes his head. He looks highly
That's just weak song-writing! You wrote
a bad song, Petey!
Bean throws his cigarette into the campfire. He storms away.
Petey turns to the other farmhands. Everyone looks
3 DAYS LATER (18 Fox-Days)
Morning in the farmers' camp. The cook flips an egg on a
skillet. He puts it on a plate with bacon and hands it to
Petey. Petey asks him:
How long can a fox go without food or
The exhausted foxes and Kylie underground. Kylie says
Well, I can only answer as an opossum,
but I don't think I can last more than
another couple of hours before I get
completely dehydrated and starve to
Ash points. Everyone looks. A tiny hole appears in the wall
at the end of the tunnel. Dirt crumbles out of it -- and a
bit of metal catches a glint. Fox and his family watch,
frozen. A breath of air blows into the tunnel.
The flame on Mrs. Fox's lantern flickers once and goes out.
Not a sound!
Silence. There is a sudden, loud scrabbling noise. A match
strikes. Fox touches it to Mrs. Fox's lantern-wick.
The tiny hole in the wall has become a large one. Badger
stands in front of Fox with his law partner Beaver, Beaver's
overgrown, hulking son, a medium-sized mole, and a grey field
mouse with a bandana tied in a "do-rag" style around his
head. Badger has a spoon in his hand. Fox and Badger erupt at
each other, screaming simultaneously:
You scared the cuss out of us!
I told you not to buy at nine and a
You don't just bang into somebody's
Are you cussing yelling at me!
You're cussing right I'm cussing yelling!
We're all cussing starving to death
because of you, you mangy, cussing,
Fox and Badger snarl and scratch at each other, circling
around the hole. They calm down slightly. Badger continues:
We've been digging in circles for three
days. Half the woods've been obliterated.
Nobody can get out. Right now my wife's
huddled at the bottom of the flint-mine
with Mrs. Mole, Mrs. Beaver, Rabbit's ex-
girlfriend, no food, no water, and twenty-
seven hungry, whining, starving, little
animal brats. This is a total cluster-
cuss for everybody!
Fox looks around the room at the entire gaunt, dirty,
emaciated assembly. Everyone stares at him angrily. He
swallows. The mole says softly.:
I just want to see a little --
But you're nocturnal, Phil. Your eyes
barely even open, on a good day.
I'm sick of your double-talk. We have
Beaver's son looms over Ash and Kristofferson in a muddy
alcove on the side of the tunnel. He pokes Ash in the chest
with the finger of his paw.
We don't like you, and we hate your dad.
You're too snazzy. You dress like a girl.
You're creative. Now grab some of that
mud, chew it in your mouth, and swallow
(scared and disgusted)
I'm not going to eat mud!
Cuss, yeah, you are.
Beaver's son grabs a handful of mud, smashes it into Ash's
mouth, and forces his jaws up and down in a chewing motion.
Ash coughs and splutters. Kristofferson frowns. He takes off
his shoes with his feet. He says with a quiet ferocity:
Don't do that.
Beaver's son looks to Kristofferson. He looks down at
Why'd you take your shoes off?
So I don't break your nose when I kick
Kristofferson kicks Beaver's son in the face, karate chops
his neck, elbow-jabs him twice in the gut, and flips the
enormous youth over his shoulder and into the mud. Beaver's
son gets up, crying, and walks out of the alcove.
Ash watches blankly with mud all over his mouth as
Kristofferson puts his shoes back on.
I can fight my own fights.
Badger and Fox stand facing each other at the end of the
tunnel. Badger says aggressively:
Those farmers aren't going to quit until
they've got you and every member of your
family nailed upside-down to a bloody
stick with your eyes gorged out.
This is getting a little too personal.
Badger waits for Fox to continue. Fox stares into space.
Give me a minute.
Fox turns and walks away. He faces the wall of the tunnel. He
sits down on a rock. Everyone watches him uncertainly. They
look at each other. Badger starts to say something, but Kylie
cuts him off sharply:
Badger falls silent. Fox sits with his chin on his paw, lost
in concentrated thought. He stands up. He nods repeatedly and
begins to pace. His eyes dart from one spot to another. His
paws move abruptly around in the air drawing lines and
shapes. He freezes and looks straight up at the ceiling of
the tunnel. He snaps the fingers of his paw and looks to the
others. He says with a cautious excitement:
I've got an idea.
What is it?
It could be a good one.
Lay it on us.
It might save our lives.
Say the idea!
Fox looks down at Ash, who stands beside him with mud still
on his mouth. He nods. He says suddenly:
All right! Let's try it!
Fox runs over to Mrs. Fox:
Go to the flint-mine. Tell Mrs. Badger,
Rabbit's ex-girlfriend, et al. that help
is on the way.
Is help on the way?
Fox grips Mrs. Fox's paw. He looks into her eyes and says
I sure as cuss hope so.
Mrs. Fox detects a special, familiar, inspired light in her
husband's eyes at this moment. She nods. She hands Ash the
lantern. She straightens the neck-line of his cape, licks the
mud off Ash's snout, and scrambles away down Badger's tunnel.
Ash wants to cry but does not. Fox turns to the others.
Gentlemen, this time we must dig in a
very special direction.
Fox feels the walls with his paws. Everyone watches
I got to kind of feel out the vibe.
Fox stops. He points slightly downwards and due south. He
says with quiet anticipation:
Everyone starts digging, slowly but intently.
The diggers one hundred yards later. Fox suddenly whistles
and raises his fist.
The diggers stop digging. Fox feels the ceiling with his
paws. He knocks something hard. It sounds hollow. He looks at
the others with a funny expression and raises an eyebrow.
Fox carefully pushes up a floorboard. It creaks loudly. They
all duck down and wait. Nothing happens. Fox pushes up a
second floorboard. He cautiously pokes his head up through
the gap. He lets out a shriek of excitement and whispers
excitedly down to the others:
I've done it! I've done it, first time!
Come up and see where you are, my
Everyone scrambles up out of the tunnel.
INT. SHED. NIGHT
Everyone stands in the middle of Boggis' Chicken House #1.
The room is teeming with chickens, which stare at them
nervously. There are black chickens, white chickens, brown
chickens, and one that combines all three colors. Fox
I hit it slap in the middle! Do you get
how incredible this is?
The others nod. They look dazed and wild. Fox holds up his
hands and whispers:
Don't lose your heads, now. Let's do this
properly. First, everyone have a drink of
Fox leads the others over to the chickens' drinking trough.
They all lap up the cool water. Fox dries his mouth.
Fox seizes a black chicken violently.
Ash and Kristofferson running down the tunnel carrying two
dead, black chickens. They turn three corners and arrive at
the mossy hollow. They look inside.
Fox and the other diggers tunnel under the silo in front of
Bunce Industries. Cows eat grass in the pasture above.
Fox and the other diggers comes out of a hole in the floor
and dance an ecstatic jig in a great storeroom lined to the
ceiling with plucked ducks and geese. Smoked hams and sides
of bacon dangle from the rafters.
Fox and the other diggers tunnel under the windmill in front
of Bean, inc. Sheep eat clover in the field above.
Fox and the other diggers comes out of a hole in the floor
and dance an ecstatic jig in a corrugated plastic and metal
pen among dozens of gobbling turkeys.
Fox and the other diggers race dancing ecstatically back
through the complex network of tunnels carrying dead turkeys,
geese, bacon, flour, salt, sugar, jars of cider, and a
portable television set.
INT. FLINT-MINE. DAY
The flint-mine is a large but cozy space with stone walls, a
dirt floor, a small kitchen, and a fireplace. There are rows
of cots, sleeping bags, boxes, blankets, and suitcases for
all the refugee animals. All the animals have gathered
together and drink cider cocktails while small rabbits,
skunks, and field mice set the table. The room is festooned
with garlands. A well-dressed mole smoking a pipe plays the
piano. A bespectacled rabbit leans against it humming a tune.
Weasel stands in the corner talking with Beaver.
What am I going to do? I'm going to hold
him to the terms of the contract. It's
not my fault they uprooted it.
Kristofferson serves cranberry punch from a tureen in the
corner. Ash goes over to him and holds out a mug.
They say I owe you an apology for some of
the mean things I said about your
father's illness. His double-pneumonia or
whatever they're calling it now.
Kristofferson ladles Ash a cupful.
So there it is. I hope we can continue
our relationship as cousins or family
members or however you want to define
(suddenly more intense)
-- but do me a favor for yourself. The
next time you have a problem with
something I've said, come to me as a fox
and let's deal with it right then and not
let it blow up into a whole, huge thing
involving parents and so on. Agreed?
Ash drinks his punch in one long sip and holds out the empty
mug for a refill. Kristofferson nods slowly. He points at Ash
with his ladle.
I'm going to teach you karate.
Badger sits next to the fireplace with Fox and Kylie.
I can imagine how painful, even just
emotionally, that must be for you.
Well, you know, it's not the end of the
Oh, but, Foxy, how humiliating! Having
your whole tail blown clean off by a --
Can we drop it?
Kristofferson starts to refill Ash's mug again. Ash suddenly
puts his paw over the brim. Kristofferson hesitates. Ash
raises an eyebrow and says mysterriously:
Ever tasted one of Mrs. Bean's famous
EXT. CAMP. DAY
A large fire truck drives up to the destroyed hill with
firemen hanging off the back and sides. It parks among the
tractors and tents. The chief, in a white helmet, goes over
to Boggis, Bunce, and Bean waiting at the mouth of the pit. A
patch on his sleeve says O.W.F.R.P.F. Farmhands and firemen
Who's got me a donation for the old
Wounded Fireman's Retirement Pension
Bean pulls a yellow check out of his inside pocket.
(pointing behind him)
Let me show you this hole.
INT. FLINT-MINE. DAY
Candles glow all around. Everyone is seated at the long
dining room table, and a magnificent feast with every variety
of fruit, meat, vegetable, and roasted bird has been laid out
in front of them. They tear into their meals, eating and
drinking ferociously. Crumbs, juices, blood, and bones fly
into the air. Jaws snap and chew. There is no conversation.
Badger suddenly stands and rings a knife against his cider
glass. Everyone looks up, taking a breather from the frenzy
of eating. Badger clears his throat.
Well, it took a near-catastrophe for all
of you to finally take me up on my offer
to have you over to the flint-mine for
dinner, but I guess we have --
I'm sorry. Maybe my invitation got lost
in the mail. Does anybody know what this
badger's talking about?
Everyone laughs. Fox sits at the opposite end of the table
with a crooked smile on his face.
But Clive's right --
-- in all seriousness --
(aside, to Badger)
-- excuse me, B.
Fox raises his cider glass. Badger reluctantly sits back
I guess we do have those three ugly,
cusshole farmers to thank for one thing:
reminding us to be thankful and aware of
each other. I'm going to say it again.
Badger whispers to his wife:
Foxy cuss-blocked my toast, man.
The hole where Fox's tree once stood. The dead tree lies on
its side. A fireman slides a thick hose deep into the tunnel.
He looks behind him and nods.
The shot moves backwards along the hose, past seven more
firemen signalling to each other with: a thumbs-up, a snap, a
fist in the air, a swirl of the fingers, a peace symbol, an A-
OK, and a hook-'em Horns. The shot continues past Boggis,
Bunce, and Bean helping to hold the hose in position. Boggis
growls. Bunce hisses. Bean snarls. The shot arrives at a pump
on the side of the fire truck. The chief points:
Let her rip.
A fireman cranks a huge wrench on a steel nut. A pressure
gauge shoots to maximum. The fire truck and hose begin to
Ash and Kristofferson crouched under a drain-cover pushed
just-open next to a refrigerator. They peer out across a
bright, clean, white kitchen at a plate of perfect, golden
cookies on a counter-top next to an open window with a step-
ladder directly in front of it. They look at each other. They
look around the quiet, empty room. Ash shrugs.
Ash and Kristofferson dart out, leaving the drain-cover
propped-up. They race over the linoleum. They climb the step-
ladder and stop at the plate. Ash swoons and says
They're still warm.
Ash and Kristofferson gather more cookies than they can
possibly carry, eating as they collect them. Crumbs go
On the other side of the room, the drain-cover falls shut
with a loud clank. Ash and Kristofferson look up, wildly
startled. All at once they hear in a simultaneous cacophony:
the back door bursting open, a boy and two beagles shouting
and barking, the pantry door slamming, Mrs. Bean and her
middle-aged housekeeper clanging pots and pans and arguing, a
timer on the counter-top ringing, and a raven fluttering to
the windowsill and cawing.
Ash and Kristofferson panic silently. They drop the cookies
and fly down the step-ladder.
Fox in mid-toast:
I've stepped on some toes and alienated a
few of you over the past few days -- but
is it wrong for me to suggest we might've
done worse than having an incredible
banquet in a beautiful flint-mine
surrounded by our favorite animals? Look
at each other. Here we are. Wow. Now I've
already had too much to drink, and I'm
feeling sentimental, but I'm going to say
something, anyway, which nobody wants to
admit, but I think is probably true: we
beat 'em. We beat those farmers, and now
we're triumphantly eating their roasted
chicken, their sizzling duck, their
succulent turkey, their foie gras de --
Where'd the boys go? Ash? Kristofferson?
(to Mrs. Fox)
What am I hearing again, baby? What's
happening? Am I still paranoid?
There is a low, distant rumbling which rapidly builds to a
deafening roar. Everyone waits, frozen. A single drop of
water drips from the ceiling into Badger's water glass. Fox
turns to Badger and says:
Let's pause again.
A wild deluge smashes into the room flooding the flint-mine
and tunnels with a blasting current that sweeps everyone and
everything away chaotically.
The entire party of well-dressed animals and their plates,
furniture, chickens, etc. shooting down the tunnel with the
rushing waters. Fox, helpless, holding his breath, looks to
the others underwater: Badger shakes his head in disgust;
Rabbit makes a fierce grimace; Mole bares his teeth
ferociously; Beaver rants angrily with bubbles coming out off
his mouth; and Kylie stares ahead vacantly, holding his nose.
Fox turns sadly to Mrs. Fox. She looks terrified.
INT. SEWER SYSTEM. NIGHT
The flood blasts out of a wide pipe rocketing the animals
into a murky, brick cavern with drainpipes on all sides and
three inches of black water on its floor. Fox picks himself
up, dazed and scared, and looks around at his soaked friends
and their families.
What the cuss just happened? Something
with water. That was dangerous. Is anyone
We're all hurt! My entire flint-mine just
Let's do a head-count! Everybody pick a
Each animal turns to his neighbor and establishes their buddy
relationship. Fox looks wildly agitated as his eyes dart
about, searching. He shouts:
Where'd the boys go? Ash? Kristofferson?
Ash's voice cracks on the other side of the cavern:
Everyone turns to see Ash standing at the mouth of a smaller
pipe. He looks devastated and terrified. Fox points to him.
Ash! Who's your buddy?
Kristofferson, but I lost him.
You lost him? Where were you?
We went for cookies.
Everyone turns to Fox. Fox yells desperately:
Fox sprints around the cavern, splashing, digging, and
ducking in and out of tunnels as the others join his frantic
search. His voice sounds pained as he shouts:
The three farmers standing next to the fire truck. Bean holds
a soaked, half-conscious Kristofferson up in the air by the
tail. Kristofferson is quietly crying.
Wrap this wet, little mutt in a newspaper
and put him in a box with some holes
punched in the top.
INT. SEWER SYSTEM. NIGHT
Everyone has gathered together. They are all in a state of
shock. Fox turns to Mrs. Fox beside him.
Your brother's going to kill me, if he
survives his double-pneumonia.
Beaver runs into the brick cavern out of a drainpipe,
There's only one way out of this sewer,
but the manhole cover's closed, and
there's a station-wagon parked on it --
which means we're permanently stuck down
You still think we beat 'em, Foxy?
Everyone turns to Fox and stares at him coldly. Fox sits down
on the floor, in the water. He says quietly:
Somebody take over. I'm not in charge
Everyone looks around at each other. They don't know what to
do. Mrs. Fox sits down in the water next to Fox.
You told me to change, but I can't --
-- except, possibly, on some level, I
think I just did.
Well, then maybe we're not all going to
Fox looks to Mrs. Fox. He stands up suddenly. He takes Mrs.
Excuse us, everyone.
Fox leads Mrs. Fox over to a ledge near a cement waterfall on
the far side of the brick cavern. He puts his arm around her
Badger's right. These farmers aren't
going to quit until they catch me. I
shouldn't have lied to your face. I
shouldn't have resigned slash gotten
fired from the Gazette. I shouldn't have
pushed these farmers so far and tried to
embarrass them and cuss with their heads.
I enjoyed it, but I shouldn't have done
it -- and now there's only one way out.
Maybe if I hand myself over and let them
kill me, stuff me, and hang me over their
You'll do no such thing.
Darling, maybe they'll let everyone else
Mrs. Fox stares at Fox. She says desolately:
Why'd you have to get us into this, Foxy?
I don't know, but I have a possible
theory. I think I have this thing where I
need everybody to think I'm the greatest
-- the quote-unquote fantastic Mr. Fox --
and if they aren't completely knocked-
out, dazzled, and kind of intimidated by
me, then I don't feel good about myself.
Mrs. Fox shakes her head and turns away. Fox continues:
Foxes traditionally like to court danger,
hunt prey, and outsmart predators -- and
that's what I'm actually good at! I
think, at the end of the day, I'm just --
We're wild animals.
Fox smiles sadly and nods. He shrugs.
I guess we always were. I promise you: if
I had all this to do over again, I'd have
never let you down. It was always more
fun when we did it together, anyway.
Mrs. Fox has tears all over her face. Fox kisses her. He
whispers in her ear:
I love you, Felicity.
I love you, too, but I shouldn't have
Mrs. Fox turns and walks away. Fox stares after her. He goes
over to Ash.
Did I ever tell you about the time I
learned we were going to have a cub?
In the fox-trap.
Right. We were at gun-point, and your
-- says she's pregnant.
Let me tell it, OK? I had no idea how we
were going to get out of this jam, and
then it hit me: what do foxes do better
than any other animal?
You're stepping on my lines.
Keep telling it.
So we dug. And the whole time I put paw
over paw, scooping dirt and pebbles with
your mother digging like crazy beside me,
I kept wondering: who is this little boy
going to be?
Or girl, right -- because at that point
we didn't know.
Fox grabs Ash by his shoulders and looks him in the eye.
Ash, I'm so glad he was you.
Fox hugs Ash tightly, holds him for an instant, then let's
go. He turns to the group.
Badger, organize a search party and try
to find Kristofferson. Maybe he's alive.
I'm sorry, everyone. I wish --
Fox looks across the cavern to Mrs. Fox standing with her
back to him. She turns to face him. Her eyes are burning. Fox
smiles sadly. He races away down the drain-pipe. Everyone
watches him disappear. Badger hesitates. He addresses the
I guess we should probably split into a
certain number of groups and start doing
INT. CONDUIT. NIGHT
Fox sprints full-speed in the darkness. His claws scratch
rattling along the iron floor and splash through puddles of
Fox stops suddenly. He stands up tall on his hind legs. His
ears perk up. One pins back. He listens.
Badger carrying a lantern leading Ash, Mole, and two small
rabbits down a drainpipe. Badger calls out:
Kristofferson? Hello? Can you hear us?
Rat's voice echoes in the darkness:
Y'all lookin' for somethin'? Nothin' down
here but rusty bottle-caps and drainin'
Everyone stops short. Rat drops into the pipe from an
overhead drain ahead of them. He says ominously:
They got the boy.
Who's got him?
The farmers three. You know who I'm
They've kidnapped him?
Well-done, Mr. Badger. You're a smart
man. They want to trade the son for his
Rat flicks a folded letter through the air. Badger catches
it. He opens it. Kylie looks over his shoulder. Badger
Why'd they write this in letters cut out
To protect their identities.
(on second thought)
Oh, right, but then why'd they sign their
names? Plus, we already knew who they
were because they're trying to kill us.
A ransom note written in letters cut out of magazines and
pasted onto a piece of paper. Badger reads out loud:
Mr. Fox, we have your son. If you
ever want to see him alive again --
Ash calls out:
I'm his son.
Everyone looks at Ash. He stands behind them in silhouette.
Rat says darkly:
I can see the resemblance.
Pause. In an instant, Rat grabs Ash by the tail, picks him up
off the ground, swings him in the air, and flings him away
twenty feet down the drainpipe. Badger looks stunned.
Ash sits in a puddle in a stupor. Rat races toward him down
the tunnel. He leaps into the air with his claws out and his
teeth bared. As he is about to seize upon Ash -- he is
suddenly jerked backwards and spun around.
Rat is face to face with Fox. Fox strikes his old-fashioned
boxing stance. He draws back and throws a hard punch, nailing
Rat square in the jaw. Rat staggers, stunned. He swings his
switchblade, cutting Fox across the chest.
Fox touches the wound and looks at the blood on the fingers
of his paw. He looks to Rat. Rat holds up his wrist and shows
Fox a child's plastic digital watch with miniature footballs,
baseballs, and soccer balls on it. He says strangely:
I've still got it.
What'd you just say?
I said I've still got the watch, Mr. Fox.
She never asked for it back.
A frozen moment. Fox springs forward and clamps his jaws onto
Rat's throat. Rat tumbles over backwards. Fox pins him to the
ground with his teeth in Rat's neck. Rat kicks and bucks and
struggles, but Fox holds him fast. Rat goes limp. Fox
Everyone slowly gathers around Fox and Rat. Ash kneels next
to his father. Fox cradles Rat in his arms. Rat whispers:
The boy's locked in an apple crate on top
of a gun-locker in the attic of Bean
Annex. It's a set-up.
Would you have told me if I didn't kill
Rat smiles sickly. Blood drips from his mouth. His voice
(shaking his head)
All these wasted years. What were you
looking for, Rat?
Fox wipes the blood from Rat's chin. Rat mutters.
He's trying to say something, Dad.
Fox leans his ear close to Rat's mouth. As quiet as a mouse,
Fox nods. He looks around the drainpipe. He cups his paw into
the pool of murky water and holds it to Rat's lips.
Here you are, Rat. A beaker of Bean's
finest secret cider.
Rat's slivery, scratchity, long, pink tongue laps up a taste
of the black liquid. He licks his lips and says faintly:
Like melted gold.
Rat's eyes turn into X's. He is dead. Ash stands up.
He redeemed himself.
Fox swallows and says hopelessly with tears in his eyes:
But, in the end -- he's just another dead
rat in a garbage pail behind a Chinese
Ash puts his hand on Fox's shoulder. Fox lays Rat gently onto
the sewer floor. He stands up and turns to the rest of the
group. Badger claps his paws together.
Well, I suppose we should --
Excuse me, again, B. The search party's
been cancelled. We're replacing it with a
go-for-broke rescue mission. It's a set-
up, but maybe we can make it work. You
two little rabbits run tell the others.
The two little rabbits scurry away down the drainpipe. Badger
walks with Fox and Ash.
What was he saying about that wristwatch?
I didn't get what he was talking about.
Fox hesitates. He shrugs and says with a sad nostalgia:
Just some old back-story.
INT. SEWER SYSTEM. NIGHT
The entire community of animals has reconnoitered in the
brick cavern. Fox stands on a large spigot and addresses the
group. He has a bandage on his chest.
In a way, I'm almost glad that flood
interrupted us, because I don't like the
toast I was giving. I'm going to start
Fox pantomimes raising a long-stemmed glass.
When I look down this table with the
exquisite feast set before us, I see: two
terrific lawyers, a skilled pediatrician,
a wonderful chef, a savvy real-estate
agent, an excellent tailor, a crack
accountant, a gifted musician, a pretty
good minnow fisherman, and possibly the
best landscape painter working on the
As Fox describes them, the shot cuts to: Badger and Beaver;
Mrs. Badger; Rabbit; Weasel; an especially small, waifish
field mouse; Mole; Kylie (who looks slightly offended); and
Mrs. Fox, respectively.
Maybe a few of you might even read my
column from time to time. Who knows? I
tend to doubt it.
I also see a room full of wild animals.
Everyone stares at Fox curiously, skeptical but intrigued.
Fox points at them:
Wild animals with true natures and pure
talents. Wild animals with scientific-
sounding Latin names that mean something
about our D.N.A. Wild animals each with
his own strengths and weaknesses due to
his or her species, and also -- well, I
guess these things usually have a lot to
do with the parents, as we all know.
Anyway, I think it may very well be all
the beautiful differences among us that
just might give us the tiniest glimmer of
a chance of saving my nephew and letting
me make it up to you for getting us into
this crazy whatever-it-is. I don't know.
It's just a thought. Thank you for
listening. Cheers, everyone.
Fox motions with his imaginary glass and pantomimes drinking
it. A few of the others reluctantly pantomime drinking. Fox
finishes his glass and pantomimes throwing it on the floor.
He makes a smashing-glass sound. Kylie shouts:
Everyone turns to Kylie uncertainly. Kylie hesitates.
What? I'm just playing along with the --
All right! Let's start planning! Who
Pause. Badger points to his otter secretary. She is Linda.
Fox darts over to her and grips her by the arm.
Linda! Lutra Lutra! You got some dry
paper? Here we go!
Fox, highly energized, moves among the group, touching their
shoulders and patting their backs.
Mole! Talpa Europea! What do you got?
I can see in the dark?
That's incredible! We can use that!
Rabbit! Oryctolagus Cuniculus!
You bet your cuss you are! Linda?
Beaver! Castor Fiber!
I can chew through wood.
Badger! Meles Meles!
What? Since when?
Explosions, flames, things that burn!
Demolitions expert! OK! Linda!
Fox's cheeks and forehead are beaded with perspiration. He
Weasel! Mustela Nivalis!
Fox snaps his fingers, kicks a rock, and throws his arm into
Fox points to the various cubs and pups.
All you little kids get organized and put
together some kind of a K.P. unit or
something to keep this sewer clean. It's
good for morale.
The field mouse shoves his way to the front of the crowd. He
makes a fist with his paw.
I want to go with you, too! I want to
Good. Fabulous! Microtus Pennsylvanicus!
Do you do that, in fact? Are field mice
Not particularly, except maybe domestic/
kitchen sink-type stuff, but I have a
hunch I might just --
-- land a few good punches before I get
stepped on, poisoned, or lured to my
death by a little piece of cheese. Who's
(smiling with admiration)
You're a cuss of a lot bigger than you
Kylie tugs at Fox's sleeve. Fox turns to look at him. Kylie
I didn't get a job yet -- or a Latin
name. What's my strength?
Fox raises an eyebrow. He thinks of something:
Listen, you're Kylie. You're an
unbelievably nice guy. Your job is really
just to... be available, I think. I don't
know your Latin name. I doubt they even
had opossums in ancient Rome.
Kylie puts his hands in his pockets and scowls.
INT. SEWER SYSTEM. NIGHT
Mrs. Fox puts the finishing touches on a vast mural painted
on the longest, tallest wall of the brick cavern. She stands
on a ladder. Her sleeves are rolled up, and she is splattered
with twelve different colors of paint. She looks down to Fox
standing below with an entourage of Kylie, Badger, Linda, and
Rickity. The animal children mop and scrub in the background.
Ash stands leaning against a push-broom watching his parents.
Fox surveys the mural. It is highly detailed, filled with the
textures of the landscape, and decorated with images of
flowers, leaves, acorns, etc. It is signed Felicity Fox. Fox
opens his arms wide and shouts:
It's stupendous. Where's us?
(pointing to a spot)
Paint an X.
The bottom of the map. Mrs. Fox's paw paints a red X and puts
a circle around it.
The shot zooms out to reveal the entire valley -- no longer a
painting on the brick wall. Lighting strikes at the horizon.
Dark clouds loom over the three farmers' compounds. It looks
exactly like one of Mrs. Fox's paintings of a landscape in a
rainstorm. Bean's helicopter circles the area.
EXT. HILL. NIGHT
A bicycle messenger with a head-lamp rings his bell as he
approaches the farmers' camp. He stops in front of Bean and
hands him an envelope. Bean tears it open and unfolds the
A note written in letters cut out of magazines and pasted
onto a piece of paper. It reads:
Dear Farmers Boggis, Bunce, and Bean,
I have no alternative but to agree to
your terms. Move the station wagon and
open the manhole cover below the foot of
the drainpipe next to the cobbler's shop
and meet me there today at 10 A.M. sharp.
I will hand myself over to you in
exchange for the boy's safe return.
Bean frowns. He studies the letter. He shows it to Boggis and
Why'd he write this in letters cut out of
I don't know, but you did the same thing.
I don't trust this guy. Anyway, set up
INT. ATTIC. DAY
The top floor of Bean Annex. The room is filled with boxes of
Christmas ornaments, old sports equipment, two stained
mattresses, and a broken birdcage. Cobwebs hang from the
rafters below the sloped roof.
Kristofferson stands with his hands in his pockets looking
out between the slats from inside a padlocked apple crate on
top of a gun locker in the corner. He clears his throat. He
calls out politely:
Could I have a cup of water, please?
Kristofferson waits for a reply, but no one answers. He
whistles to himself for a minute. He clears his throat again.
He calls out:
Excuse me! Excuse me?
INT. DRAINPIPE. DAY
A cement conduit with an iron grating above it. A fast stream
of sewer water runs along its side. Fox walks briskly down
the pipe followed by his entourage and Ash. Their steps echo
Synchronize your clocks. The time is
Fox looks at his wrist. He is wearing Rat's plastic, digital,
-- nine forty-five A.M.
Everyone checks their watches. Badger points at Fox's wrist.
Is that Rat's watch?
No. Originally, no.
Well, OK, here's the back-story: when I
was a teenager I spent a summer working
as a bar-back at a jazz pub called
Django's where Rat played horn down
near -- can I tell this another time? We
should stay focused on what's happening
Ash comes up to Fox's side and says discreetly:
I should probably ride with you and Kylie
since it's my fault Kristofferson got
captured stealing those nutmeg-ginger-
I didn't understand a word of that
sentence, but none of it matters, anyway,
because it's too dangerous for you to
come with us.
EXT. STREET. DAY
An old craftsman looks out from the window of Ferguson
Cobblers as he taps little nails into the heel of a loafer. A
station-wagon with wood-grain side-panels and a flat tire
sits parked on a manhole cover in front of the shop. Boggis,
Bunce, and five armed farmhands watch as Bean monkeys with a
slim-jim until he gets the car door jimmied.
Bean hops inside. He starts the engine, puts his arm over the
top of the seat as he looks back out the rear window, and
throws the station-wagon into reverse. The farmers clear out
of the way as Bean backs up off the manhole cover.
Boggis and Bunce stick tools into the manhole cover and lift
Rat's watch. It is now 10 A.M.
Six armed farmhands on the roof of the Nag's Head Tavern.
Seven armed farmhands in the bushes behind Sweetings Bakery.
Eight armed farmers in the window of Harrison Travel.
The Action 13 reporter and camera crew in an alley next to
St. John's Coin-op Laundry.
EXT. STREET. DAY
Boggis, Bunce, and Bean crouch behind the open doors of a
pick-up truck with three beagles. Boggis checks his carbine.
Bunce loads his shotgun. Bean cocks his Luger. Fox's voice
hollers from deep inside the manhole:
Did you bring the boy?
Of course, we did! Say something, kid!
Bunce presses play on a tape recorder. Kristofferson's voice
comes over a loudspeaker:
Excuse me! Excuse me?
Bunce presses stop.
Fox and his entourage at the bottom off the manhole. Fox
scoffs. He smiles and shakes his head.
Come on! That doesn't sound anything like
him! It's amateur night in Dixie!
Badger rapidly slaps two pieces of flint together. A bit
chips off, and sparks fly from the break. He blows on some
kindling. He takes a pinecone out of a basket.
EXT. STREET. DAY
A ribbon of white smoke rises out of the manhole. The three
farmers watch curiously as it thickens and turns black. Bean
What the cuss is he burning?
A blazing pinecone shoots out of the manhole and flies
through the air, over the farmers' heads. It lands in a trash
can and lights some rubbish on fire. A man with a dart in one
hand and a mug of ale in the other comes out of the Nag's
Head and pours his beer into the trash can. The fire goes
The three farmers laugh smugly. Bean shouts:
Is that all you've got, Mr. Fox?
Twenty-seven blazing pinecones shoot out of the manhole and
hit: a wood-pile on the roof of the Nag's Head, a box of
pastry wrappers in the bushes behind Sweetings, a stack of
brochures in the window of Harrison Travel, a hay bale in the
bed of the pick-up truck, Boggis, Bunce, Bean, and a crate of
cam-corder batteries next to the Action 13 camera crew, which
explodes. Farmers scatter, grabbing hoses, yelling, and
tamping out the flames as the beagles bark, yelp, and
scramble in the confusion.
Rabbit darts out of the hole and races up the street. Six
farmers chase after him, firing their weapons.
INT. SEWER SYSTEM. DAY
Down in the brick cavern, Mole listens to a tin can attached
to a string. He says urgently as he makes notations in a
Twenty-eight pinecones fired! Twenty-two
Mrs. Fox, standing on her ladder, paints black checks quickly
on the street in her mural. The stolen, portable television
set sits in the corner, tuned into Action 13's coverage of
the chaos in the street.
Rabbit running full-steam out of the village being pursued by
the six farmhands. He hurdles an empty Coke bottle lying on
its side in the road.
EXT. STREET. DAY
Badger jumps out of the manhole and throws more blazing
pinecones at farmers, trucks, parked cars, doors, windows,
and the Action 13 camera crew. Seven farmhands chase him down
a cobblestone lane.
Weasel and Beaver climb out with straws in their paws and
start firing blueberries toward the disoriented beagles. The
beagles eat blueberries. They fall over. Eight farmhands
chase Weasel and Beaver up a wooded path.
Rickity, the field mouse, bounds out of the hole and leaps
into the fracas. He fires a rubber band at Bunce off a
paperclip. It snaps Bunce in the corner of his eye. Rickity
lets out a little whoop.
There is a small explosion and a burst of flames blasts from
the manhole. Fox and Kylie jump out and run over to a vehicle
with a tarp over it parked in front of Paddington Automotive.
Fox whips off the tarp, revealing a miniature motorcycle with
Fox driving the motorcycle with Kylie in the sidecar. They
both wear helmets and goggles. Thunder rumbles in the
distance. Kylie sinks lower in the sidecar. He shouts to Fox
over the sound of the motor:
Are you scared of wolves?
Scared, no! I have a phobia of them!
Well, I have a thing about thunder!
Why? That's stupid!
Ash pokes his head up from the rear compartment of the
sidecar. He also wears a helmet and goggles. His white cape
flutters behind him. He shouts:
I don't like needles!
Fox and Kylie look to Ash in disbelief. Fox says furiously:
Where'd you come from again? How'd you
get in the sidecar? I feel like I'm
losing my mind!
Fox angrily steers toward a small mound of dirt. They jump it
slightly and fly over a little ditch. Ash yelps
enthusiastically as Fox drives them back onto the road.
INT. HELICOPTER. DAY
A pilot with a red moustache and a South African accent flies
Bean's chopper. He wears a Bean, inc. patch on his shoulder.
He shouts into the microphone connected to his helmet:
I've got a fox on a motorcycle with a
littler fox and what looks to be an
opossum in the sidecar riding north on
farm lane seven. Does that sound like
anything to anybody?
A military-type voice responds over the radio:
MILITARY VOICE (O.S.)
Roger that, Red. Let me just, uh -- Oh, I
think the boss wants to --
Red, it's Franklin Bean! Turn around, get
the cuss back here, and pick us up on the
EXT. BEAN'S COMPOUND. DAY
The Bean, inc. windmill spins briskly in the dusty winds.
Shutters on the farmhouse bang open and shut. Leaves rustle
on the branches of the apple trees. A few stray turkeys
wander in the yard. A white-washed brick pile six stories
tall sits apart from the other structures. The doors to its
courtyard are made of iron and painted yellow. This is Bean
The front gates of the farm are open, and a gardener waters
vegetables next to the driveway. Fox, Kylie, and Ash look out
from a high branch over a reinforced concrete and barbed-wire
That's the annex over there on the right.
Ash nods. Kylie does not respond.
The white building over there on the
Pause. Fox looks to Kylie.
Kylie turns to Fox and stares at him vacantly. Fox says
I did it!
When? I didn't see it!
Kylie makes his slight gesture with his paw. The gardener
puts three turnips into a basket and rides away on his
Fox, Kylie, and Ash scramble down the tree trunk. They come
out of the bushes on their motorcycle and ride through the
gates, across the yard, past the wandering turkeys. They park
outside the courtyard doors to Bean Annex and jump off the
Fox climbs onto Kylie's shoulders and tries the knobs. They
Kylie, you got a credit card?
(digging in his pockets)
See, this is what I was saying about how
good you are at just being available for
Kylie hands Fox a World Traveler Titanium Card. Fox frowns.
A Titanium Card? How the cuss did you
qualify for this?
I pay my bills on time. I've always had
Fox examines the card with mild resentment. He picks the lock
and opens the doors.
The courtyard has high walls and a gravel floor. On one side,
there are ten trash cans, a stack of newspapers, and a
compost heap. On the other side, there is an old, rusted,
broken-down tractor and a new one. By far the largest,
fattest, toughest beagle yet lies sleeping in the middle.
White foam froths around its mouth as it breathes heavily.
Its collar is hooked to a thick chain. A tag around its neck
Fox, Kylie, and Ash stop in their tracks. The beagle opens
his eyes. Fox turns to Kylie.
Give me a blueberry.
Kylie looks surprised. He shrugs. He shakes his head and
gestures, I don't have any. Fox frowns. He throws up his
hands in the air. Kylie makes a frustrated face. Fox points
at him. Kylie looks away and snorts angrily. Fox looks away
and spits at the ground. Ash says quietly:
What's that white stuff around his mouth?
I think he eats soap.
Fox sees an amber, plastic pharmacy bottle on a shelf above
some bags of fertilizer. It's reads:
Drug: Phenomoxylcarbobubytol, 10 mg
For: RABIES (chronic)
Other: Take with meat, do not operate heavy machinery
Fox frowns. He says grimly:
That's not soap.
Well, then why does he have that bubbly --
He's rabid. With rabies. I've heard about
The beagle stands up. Fox says carefully:
Fox takes a cautious step toward the beagle. He holds out the
back of his paw for the beagle to sniff. He says back over
his shoulder to Kylie and Ash:
I'm going to try to befriend him. I feel
like there's a tenderness in his eyes.
Fox takes another step. He makes a soft, kissing noise. The
beagle watches him calmly.
Yes, I'm right. He's a good boy. A little
lonely, maybe, but --
Fox takes another cautious step.
-- but terribly sweet. Hello, there, boy.
Is your name Spitz? That's German, isn't
(aside, to Ash)
I thought he said you never look a beagle
in the eye.
Why, you're just as sweet as a --
Fox and the beagle lock eyes. The pupils of the beagle's eyes
contract then completely disappear, and the whites turn
bright red. Fox's eyes open wider than their sockets.
The rabid beagle erupts ballistically, attacking like an
enraged maniac. His chain rips out of the cement. Fox, Kylie,
and Ash shriek and scream, sprinting frantically around the
courtyard as the rabid beagle, frothing, roaring, and
snapping, tries desperately to kill them. Fox shouts, his
voice cracking like a grandmother's:
Climb the trellis!
In well under a second, Fox, Kylie, and Ash scale the trellis
six stories -- Kylie's pants catching on a nail and ripping
off on the way up -- and find themselves standing on the roof
of Bean Annex. Kylie wears blue Fruit-of-the-Looms with a
pattern of stars, moons, and planets on them. They all look
down at the rabid beagle, which continues to pitch an insane
fit, running in circles after its tail at the bottom of the
Fox takes in their new surroundings. He says, pleased:
So the attic is probably in the area
right up around here somewhere, I figure,
Kylie and Ash, panting and dripping with sweat, both stare at
(NOTE: a second set of alternate eyeballs indicating Kylie's
vacant look will be used for Ash in this shot.)
Come on, guys. Stay with me. We did good.
That's just some dog. Let's not get
EXT. ROOF. DAY
Bean's helicopter lands on top of the Nag's Head. Fires
smolder and farmers continue to chase around after animals in
the village streets below. Boggis, Bunce, and Bean, leaning
over and holding onto their hats, run to the chopper and
climb inside. They take off.
The street below. An orange and yellow Citroen van screeches
into the melee. Painted yellow letters spell Badoit et Fils,
Destruction des Animaux Nuisibles on the side of it with an
image of a trapped fox.
An old man with a grey moustache and a young man with a black
moustache, both dressed in orange-and-yellow-striped
uniforms, jump out of the van. They open the side door and
start unloading stacks of metal cages.
Rabbit still running full-steam down a country lane being
pursued by the six farmhands.
INT. ATTIC. DAY
Kristofferson stands inside the apple crate leaning against
the wall with his legs crossed and one arm akimbo with his
hand on his hip. There is a clanking sound from above.
Kristofferson looks up.
A trap door in the ceiling creaks open. Fox, Kylie, and Ash
look inside, down at Kristofferson. Kristofferson smiles
oddly and says in a surprised, fancy-meeting-you-here voice:
Fox and Kylie lowering Ash into the room with three different-
colored shoelaces tied together and belted around his waist.
Ash holds the shoelace and keeps a paw behind his back like a
mountaineer. His feet touch down on the shelf. He runs to the
apple crate and jiggles the padlock. He hesitates. He says
Can I get one of those karate lessons
OK. Normally, we start with some
breathing exercises and such. Stand like
Kristofferson stands with his paws clasped in front of him.
Ash mimics this.
A fox-trap hanging from a chain suspended above the alley
behind the Nag's Head Tavern. A second one hangs behind
Sweetings Bakery. A third one hangs behind Harrison Travel. A
fourth one hangs behind St. John's Coin-op Laundry. A fifth
one hangs behind Ferguson Cobblers.
Rickity curiously examines a little, hanging wire. He mutters
Is this spring-loaded?
Kristofferson continuing Ash's karate lesson:
This next part is mental. Position
yourself on the balls of your feet.
Kristofferson stands lightly poised with his arms out. Ash
Close your eyes.
Kristofferson closes his eyes. So does Ash. So do Fox and
Kylie. Kristofferson says mystically:
You weigh less than a slice of bread.
Each fox-trap in rapid succession as it falls on: Rickity,
Badger, Weasel, and Beaver. The two small rabbits watch from
a sewer-gutter drain under the street-curb. They panic. They
race down a pipe, into a tunnel, and through a conduit.
Kristofferson continuing Ash's karate lesson:
Let's review the principle agility
techniques: jumping, flipping, landing.
Mrs. Fox looking down from her ladder at the three, panting
rabbits. She looks stunned. She motions to her mural/map and
Show me where they are!
The two small rabbits, Mrs. Rabbit, Mrs. Badger, Mole, and
Mrs. Fox each furiously digging a new tunnel.
Now for a rudimentary version of the
Kristofferson continuing Ash's karate lesson:
First, you need to get a running start,
which, obviously, I can't do in here,
then, as you arrive at the destination of
the chop --
-- lean and thrust into the point of
contact, paw remains open and straight,
then withdraw instantaneously. Remember,
it's the pull-back that matters. The pull-
-- generates the force of the impact.
Ash walks ten paces away to the far end of the shelf. Fox and
Kylie watch from above. Kylie says excitedly:
He's going to do it!
Fox makes a face that says, I'm not so sure. Ash takes a deep
breath. He screams at the top of his lungs as he sprints
toward the apple crate:
Ash's toe catches on a loose nail. He somersaults twice
through the air and bounces off the side of the apple crate,
which falls off the shelf.
Kristofferson braces himself. The apple crate hits the floor
and shatters into pieces. Kristofferson lies among the
Ash looks over the side of the shelf. Fox and Kylie watch
from above, grimacing.
That's all right. You were just trying to
unlock the apple crate.
No, I mean I'm sorry about --
(picking himself up)
Oh, you mean from before. The apology you
owed me which you never actually said.
Kristofferson nods sadly. He takes a deep breath. He nods
That's all right, too. Throw me the
Badger trapped in his cage. He hears something. He looks
quickly down the alley. The old, orange van turns the corner
and approaches, bumping over potholes. Badger shrinks into
the corner of the cage and mutters grimly to himself:
Badoit et fils.
A cobblestone beside Badger suddenly drops straight down and
disappears into the ground. Badger recoils, scared and
Mrs. Fox pokes her head up through the hole. She is beaded
with perspiration and breathes heavily. Her fur is wildly
dishevelled. She looks to the van driving up the alley. She
looks to Badger. She extends her paw to him and says
EXT. YARD. DAY
Fox, Kylie, Ash, and Kristofferson come around the side of
the building. They run to their motorcycle, outside the
courtyard doors. They freeze.
The front gates to the compound are closed and bolted. Bean's
helicopter waits on top of the vegetable garden with its
rotar-blades whirling. Boggis, Bunce, and Bean stand in front
of Bean Annex with their weapons drawn.
Fox sees his tail around Bean's collar. His eyes narrow. His
jaw sets. He says to himself with growing emotion:
Your tractors uprooted my tree. Your
posse hunted my family. Your gunmen
kidnapped my nephew. Your rat insulted my
wife -- and you shot off my tail.
I'm not leaving here without that neck-
Bean smiles his sickly smile. Fox smiles back defiantly.
Kylie looks utterly baffled. Ash says mystically:
I weigh less than a slice of bread.
I'll be right back.
Ash runs. Fox, Kylie, and Kristofferson watch, shocked, as
Ash sprints back to the courtyard doors. The three farmers
open fire at him. Fox, Kylie, and Kristofferson duck and take
cover behind a hay-bale.
Ash dodges bullets. He jumps off the balls of his feet with
his arms out over a sprinkler-pipe and swings like a gymnast
onto a clothesline, then flies through the air doing another
of his spectacularly awkward four-armed and three-legged back-
flips. He lands on the handle of one of the courtyard doors
Ash cyclone-chops the doorknob. The lock clicks. Ash's eyes
Ash drops to the ground. He digs a hole and burrows into the
dirt as bullets fly everywhere. He breathes in through his
nose and out through his mouth. Fox watches with his jaw
The courtyard doors smash apart and the rabid beagle tears
out into the vegetable garden growling, foaming, and
thrashing crazily. The farmers shriek and scream and run
around, panicking, with their guns blazing.
Fox, Kylie, Ash, and Kristofferson jump onto their
motorcycle. The beagle rips the tail from Bean's neck, shreds
it, chews it up, and swallows it. Fox deflates for an
instant, then recovers. He looks to Ash on the back of the
motorcycle, behind him, with his hands around Fox's waist. He
says with the deepest affection and respect:
Ash, that was pure, wild animal
craziness. You're an athlete.
Ash swallows. He beams. He sits up straighter.
(NOTE: from this point onwards, an alternate version of Ash
will be used which is slightly taller, slightly leaner, and
animated slightly more gracefully.)
Fox kick-starts the motorcycle and races across the farm.
Boggis, Bunce, and Bean scramble onto the roof of a car port
with an old, white Mercedes convertible under it. The
snarling beagle barks and snaps below them. They watch as:
Fox steers the motorcycle toward a broken apple cart at the
edge of the property. He guns the motor and yells:
Holy swearing cuss!!!
Fox races the motorcycle up the apple cart, into the air, and
over the concrete barricade. They land in the middle of the
road, skidding, and speed off down the hill.
Boggis, Bunce, and Bean watching from the roof of the car
port. Boggis turns to Bean and says, deadpan, needling him:
Franklin? You got any final twist for
Bean grabs Boggis by the neck and throttles him. Bunce starts
throwing punches. Bean holds him back by the forehead. Boggis
kicks Bunce in the stomach. They brawl chaotically while the
rabid beagle continues to go bananas below them.
Each fox-trap with a cobblestone missing underneath it and a
hole in the ground. The old man with the grey moustache turns
to his son and says with a strong French accent:
INT. SEWER SYSTEM. DAY
Mrs. Fox sits anxiously at the bottom of her ladder. Badger,
Weasel, Rickity, the two small rabbits, and the others sit,
exhausted, in the dark cavern, passing a jar of cider. Mole
Everyone looks to Mole. Mole is holding the tin can with the
string attached to it to his ear. He nods and says urgently:
I just intercepted a high-frequency radio
signal with the can --
(gestures with the tin can)
-- and I think they're on their way home!
Mrs. Fox jumps up, embraces Mole, and kisses him on the
snout. Mole blushes.
Rabbit still running full-steam back into the village being
pursued by the six farmhands. He comes to the manhole where
they started and darts into it. The six farmhands stop at the
manhole and look down. They go straight to the Nag's Head,
walk inside, and close the door behind them.
EXT. ROAD. DAY
Fox, Kylie, Ash, and Kristofferson ride down a country road.
Kylie sees something across the meadow. He says warily:
Don't turn around!
Fox turns around. A huge, wild, grey wolf with ice-blue eyes
stands on a rock fifty feet away from them. Fox slams on the
brakes. The motorcycle slides to a halt.
Where'd he come from?
Where'd you come from? What are you doing
Pause. Fox points toward the wolf:
Fox points to himself:
The wolf does not answer. Fox, Kylie, Ash, and Kristofferson
watch idling from the motorcycle.
I don't think he speaks English or Latin.
Pensez-vous que 1'hiver sera rude?
I'm asking if he thinks we're in for a
The wolf shakes his head. Fox nods.
He doesn't seem to know.
Silence. Fox shouts to the wolf with a strange hitch in his
I have a phobia of wolves!
The wolf does not answer. It breathes heavily with its mouth
open. Its teeth are long, sharp, and yellow. Its tongue hangs
out, and its eyes are wild. Fox looks back at it with the
identical expression for a minute, mesmerized -- then Fox
closes his mouth and his eyes soften.
Fox raises his paw in the air. The wolf blinks a few times.
It raises its paw in the air. It turns away and trots off
into the woods. Fox says wistfully:
What a beautiful creature. Wish him luck,
Fox guns the motor. Gravel spits from under the spinning
tires, and they tear off down the road. The shot booms down
into the ground, below the grass, through buried pebbles,
layers of soil, and subterranean mineral deposits.
THREE DAYS LATER (2 1/2 Fox Weeks)
The shot continues to descend past Badger and his family
having dinner in a nicely furnished drain-pipe, past Rabbit
and his family watching Magnum, P.I. on the stolen, portable
television set in a well-appointed cement tunnel, past Beaver
and Mrs. Beaver hosting Mole and Weasel for cocktails in a
The shot stops in a small chamber adjacent to the brick
cavern. The walls are filled with electrical cables, wires,
pipes, and a large, new mural which depicts the Fox's former
view of the valley as seen from their tree with a trompe
1'oeil window-frame around it. It is signed Felicity Fox.
Ash and Kristofferson sit Indian-style meditating on a
braided rug. Mrs. Fox works mixing paints and turpentine at
an easel in the corner. There is an armchair with a folded-up
copy of the Gazette on its cushion in the center of the room
under a glowing lamp. Classical music plays on a radio.
Fox swings his head into the room from a tunnel. He says
Everyone looks to Fox. He signals them to follow him.
INT. DRAINPIPE. NIGHT
The cement conduit with the iron grating above it. Fox and
his family walk briskly down the pipe. A knitted, woolen,
artificial tail has been sewn into the seat of Fox's
Where are we going?
We were in the middle of a meditation
Watch your step.
Fox takes everyone through an opening and starts climbing a
metal ladder. He says theatrically:
Let's see, now. Where does this lead?
Oh, no, Foxy. It's filthy.
Keep a good grip, everyone.
This better be worth it.
I think I see a little sliver of light.
What's this? Is that a door?
You're a terrible actor, Foxy.
Do you smell something? Is that --
Shh. I'm going to crack open this trap
door and see if something's on the other
side. I highly doubt it, though. There's
probably just more sewer.
Fox clears his throat. Pause.
You know, wouldn't it be surprising if --
Fox pushes open the trap door and crawls out. Everyone
INT. SUPERMARKET. NIGHT
Fox and his family stand in the middle of an aisle at the
center of a large grocery store. To their left is the
refrigerated section of milk, eggs, meat, fish, and cheese.
To their right are canned goods, breakfast cereal, laundry
detergent, rice, pasta, and condiments. The lights are half-
dimmed, and a metal grate is closed over the front windows.
There are no people. Fox says casually:
Hey, look! There's a whole, enormous,
glorious, gigantic supermarket up here!
Ash and Kristofferson seem dumbstruck. Fox raises an eyebrow
and smiles at Mrs. Fox. She puts her arm around his shoulder.
You really are kind of a quote-unquote
I try. I guess now that Kristofferson's
dad's already down to single-pneumonia
and getting better, he'll be going home
Actually, when he spoke to me from the
hospital, he said he was already talking
MRS. FOX (cont'd)
to Weasel about real-estate availabil-
ities down in our sewer system.
Oh, really? Well, now's the time to buy.
Kylie comes around the end of the aisle pushing a miniature
shopping cart filled with jars of jelly, jam, olives,
pickles, and honey, plus three loaves of bread, Band-Aids,
toothpaste, and a carton of strawberry ice cream. He says
Did I hear my name?
Not down here, you didn't.
Because we were talking about other
Fox looks at Ash, who is studying a twelve-pack of tropical
The white cape rather suits him, doesn't
it? Actually, I had to do quite a bit of
searching myself before I found a look
that really flattered me. Remember those
Fox and Mrs. Fox crack-up laughing. Fox notices something and
stops. He stares at Mrs. Fox strangely. She is glowing. She
hesitates. She shrugs.
I'm pregnant again.
Fox is confused and moved. He holds Mrs. Fox's face in his
paws. She smiles. Ash interrupts:
Fox and Mrs. Fox look to Ash. An empty punch-box lies on its
side behind him with a straw sticking out of it. There is a
huge, purple stain all over the front of his white shirt.
Should we dance?
Pause. Everyone breaks out giddily dancing an ecstatic jig.
Kylie waltzes the cart in circles. Fox spins Mrs. Fox.
A wide shot of all sixteen aisles of the supermarket stacked
with boxes, cartons, cans, bottles, bags, and jars of every
possible variety of food. The family of foxes continues to
dance at the distant end of the center aisle.
EXT. STREET. DAY
Boggis, Bunce, and Bean sit silently in folding metal chairs
around the manhole. Boggis's carbine rests across his lap.
Bunce's shotgun hangs from a strap over his shoulder. Bean
cleans his Luger. Petey sits on a cider box outside the Nag's
Head strumming his guitar in the background. The bartender
pulls the shutters shut and flips a sign on the door to
Closed. Petey starts singing his song as the credits roll.
The sun sets. The farmers sit waiting in the dark.