"Mimic", production draft, revised by Matt Greenberg & Guillermo del Toro
M i M i C
Guillermo del Toro
June 19th 1996
NOTE: THE HARD COPY OF THIS SCRIPT CONTAINED SCENE NUMBERS.
THEY HAVE BEEN REMOVED FOR THIS SOFT COPY.
Wet CLICKING SOUNDS. A BEAM of purplish ULTRA-VIOLET LIGHT
reveals a mosaic of moving forms... COCKROACHES. They skitter
restlessly under the beam's intensity. SERIES OF SHOTS -- the
UV Beam passing over various parts of the space. Pipe webs,
walls, girders -- all covered with the insects. Thousands of
PULL BACK TO REVEAL
INT. SEWER SYSTEM
Innards of steel. A vast maze of tunnels.
A GROUP OF FIGURES advances through the tunnels with handheld
The figures are dressed in gray air-tight NEOPRENE SUITS,
their faces hidden by skin tight MASKS and bug-like NIGHT
VISION GOGGLES. In the dense silence, respirator valves HISS-
CLICK at the corner of their lips in mechanical rhythm.
The scene has a dream-like, choreographed quality.
Eerie, aquatic green. The horde of insects appear to be some
kind of sea-life, crawling over the floor of a dead ocean.
THE TEAM OF FIGURES
From their midst appears another FIGURE, its neoprene suit a
flat WHITE. Female, clearly the TEAM LEADER.
She carries a stainless steel CONTAINER filled with twenty
small compartments, each bearing a large, heavy-shelled roach
with a different BARCODE on their back.
She kneels and opens the
TCHK!! A dozen of the Judas roaches are released. They slide
through into the area.
THE NEARBY ROACHES
react instantaneously. In a rustle of tiny legs, they begin
to stream toward the Judases.
Jostle and fight each other for position to mate with them.
They even crawl over the Team Leader in an effort to reach
the Judases. The Team Leader makes no effort to brush them
off. Patient, almost godlike, she watches the MATING.
A MANHOLE has been opened above. CHAINS are dropped down and
attached by a Team Member to A 100-GALLON DISPOSAL DRUM.
REVEAL the floor of the tunnel, carpeted with the still forms
of the roaches, now all DEAD.
The Team Members quietly shovel the tiny corpses into other
At their feet skitter the only survivors of the massacre:
the bar-coded Judas Roaches.
In a crunch of machinery, the first disposal drum is lifted
by the chains through the manhole to
EXT. A CITY STREET - DAY
MIDTOWN MANHATTAN. A cacophony of SOUND and LIGHT.
Dirty snow drifts over Bryant Park. Emergency lights blink
everywhere. A wall of cars sits on Sixth Avenue, stopped
dead. Exhaust fumes hang in the air. Jaded TRAFFIC COPS send
the cars on crosstown detours.
Mounted policemen patrol a line of yellow sawhorses near
dozens of Department of Public Health vehicles, angle-parked
in a military phalanx.
A monumental ribcage-like scaffolding has been erected in the
middle of the street, "sealing" the area with amber plastic.
Inside, UNIFORMED WORKERS take the disposal drum of roaches
and toss it into one of a number of huge DUMPSTERS.
The Team Leader watches from nearby, exhauster. Her mask is
off. We see her face: Enthomologist SUSAN WYETH, 28.
An ARM gently drapes over her shoulder.
How we doing?
She looks over at DR. PETER TYLER, 34, bespectacled. A
HEADSET around his neck, a coat emblazoned with the
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH logo. He has the look of a man who's
just fought a long battle and come out victorious.
He offers her a bite of a PAY DAY CANDYBAR. Susan smiles,
shakes her head. She wearily leans against him.
Peter looks out as the dumpster filled with roaches is raised
by MECHANICAL ARMS into the waiting maw of the dump truck.
THE SCREEN. DARKNESS.
A voice, a somber bas-relief in the darkness.
Strickler's Disease crept into Manhattan
like a thief in the night, claiming its
first hundred victims before it was even
INT. HOSPITAL - NIGHT - FLOATING SHOT
We FLOAT through a long hospital ward.
Past ROWS of illuminated oxygen tents, pulsating softly in
the dark like cocoons of light.
Most were children under ten.
TRACK past tents. BODIES OF SMALL CHILDREN inside, wrapped
in white sheets, hooked up to IVs or breathing apparatus.
Skeletal hands, parched lips, glazed eyes.
BELLOWS of respirators push in and out, labored, failing.
IMAGE RESOLVES TO A VIDEO ON A SCREEN.
PULL BACK to reveal a number of SCREENS, each with a
different set of images. We are in a NEWS VAN. A
TECHNICIAN and DIRECTOR sit watching.
The voice belongs to an ANCHORMAN who's now overimposed.
Only after the numbers had reached into
the thousands were officials able to
identify the carrier of the deadly
Cut to three.
The Technician manipulates the controls. On another screen
we see them cut to STOCK NEWS FOOTAGE: regular cockroaches,
crawling on garbage.
Blattida Germanica. The common
(To a RUNNER)
Tell them we're ready for a live feed.
EXT. OUTSIDE VAN - CITY HALL - DUSK
The runner exits the News Van. Other such vehicles parked
nearby. A CROWD of ONLOOKERS, REPORTERS and a gaggle of
PROTESTERS with handpainted signs.
Gliding past them, we pick up sound bites...
...an insect that has proven virtually
immune to chemical control...
...the announcement by the Health
Department that an end to the nightmare
REPORTER 3 is interviewing a Greenpeace PROTESTER who is
holding up a photograph of Susan.
...an ex-colleague of Doctor Susan
...Susan has always been opposed to
biological tampering. A real advocate
for ecological causes, it's not...
MOVE past them to further inside of the perimeter...
INT. AUDITORIUM - CITY HALL
A NEWS CONFERENCE in progress. A packed house. T.V.
monitors spaced ever 10 seats or so. In the audience, the
MAYOR OF NEW YORK and various CITY OFFICIALS, listening to
Peter, speaking at the podium with the ease and enthusiasm of
a public servant still untainted by bureaucracy.
ON A TV MONITOR
While Peter talks, a news title appears at the bottom of the
screen: PETER TYLER. DEPUTY DIRECTOR, DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH.
...in Nature, evolution is a long,
leisurely conversation between an
organism and its environment. We,
however, did not have the luxury of
Susan is waiting in the wings. She observes the audience.
She notices that the entire front row is composed of CHILDREN
who have survived Strickler's. Leg and arm braces, facial
He nods at Susan, who takes the podium, adjusting her jacket,
slightly ill at ease in her business suit. She clears her
throat, speaks softly.
With the aid of genetic labs throughout
the country, we recombined cockroach DNA
with genetic information from termites
and mantids. We were able to create a
biological counter-agent. A new ally, if
She places a clear container on the podium for all to see.
One of the Judas roaches skitters about in the container.
The "Judas Roach".
Cameras FLASH. MURMURS from the audience.
The Judas is a non-carrier of Stricklers,
with a short life-span and heightened
On the back row she can see some ecological hand-painted
signs being raised in silent protest. She stumbles for a
second, then resumes her speech.
The female is basically a sexual magnet;
common males travelled miles and fought
for the right to mate with them.
The audience is rapt.
When they did, they took away something
else we added -- a hormone, passed
through sexual congress that causes their
metabolism to go into overdrive. No
matter what their food intake, they
starved to death in a matter of hours.
Now Peter takes the mic.
We've achieved almost total eradication
of the roach population. As of today,
the disease has been officially
A STANDING OVATION starts and is carried on as we...
INT. TYLER APARTMENT - BATHROOM - SUSAN
in a tub in a dark bathroom. Her business suit crumpled
on the bathroom floor. SOUND of a TV outside.
Sus, come on. You're missing it.
INT. LIVING ROOM
Nothing grand. Peter in his shorts at a TV with shitty
reception. He adjusts the disgruntled cable box.
He is seen over the TV, giving his address.
Fucking thing! I hope someone's taping
Susan, come on. It's really good this
time. I got most of the lines out.
Peter sighs. He picks up an open bottle of champagne and
two mis-matched ceramic cups, then heads for the bathroom.
Life's a bitch. Our 15 minutes came
and went and all we got was bad
Susan doesn't answer, clearly not in the same high spirits.
Hiding from the hard glare of publicity?
He notices her crumpled garment on the floor. He picks it
up, puts it up on the hanger.
A shame. You looked great tonight.
He sits by the tub.
Do you think we did the right thing?
Taking a cab instead of hiring a limo?
You know what I mean...
Peter pours some champagne into the cups.
We did no impact evaluation. The
Is this a Catholic guilt thing...?
We hear a NEWSREADER on the TV.
...a flawless strategy which has stopped
a potential epidemic in its tracks...
You hear that? Flawless.
We just don't know.
He offers one cup to Susan. She doesn't take it.
We know we saved lives.
He sits closer to her.
There're gonna be a lot of kids running
around next year because of you.
Beat. Susan starts to relax. He kisses her.
Who know? We get lucky, maybe a couple
of 'em'll be ours.
We're down to a "couple" now, huh?
She pats the water, beckoning.
Oh, I don't know. People are beginning
to talk about us...
Still partially clothed, he steps into the bathtub. Susan
shakes her head, laughs ruefully.
Don't worry, I'll save your honor.
Maybe I'll even marry you.
She reaches over, kisses him.
FADE IN TO:
EXT. ALPHABET CITY - NIGHT
The WILLIAMSBURG BRIDGE dimly visible through the rain.
ALPHABET CITY STREETS
Empty warehouses. Closed businesses. Traffic lights blinking
on empty streets. Everything seems doomed under the heavy
layer of rain.
SUPERIMPOSE: TWO YEARS LATER
A DILAPIDATED BUILDING before us. A blazing NEON CROSS made
of the words 'JESUS SAVES' hangs askew from its facade.
CRANE to see the ROOFTOP.
WHAM! The door to the interior stairs FLIES OPEN and a tall,
thin CHINESE PREACHER in his sixties lurches out, eyes wild
He looks back down the steps.
Something's climbing up fast, casting ominous, complex
shadows on the wall.
Too many FOOTSTEPS for it to be just one person.
The man hurriedly shuts the door and slides a bolt home.
Trembling, he backs away as a booming THUD makes the door
shudder. Raw, frenzied pounding and scratching follows...
something inhuman, determined to break through.
The metal surface suddenly buckles and bulges.
On the man's white undershirt, a blotch of blood starts to
grow. Needles of rain stab his flesh.
He searches wildly for a possible escape.
He reaches the edge of the roof: it's five floors down to the
Two of the hinges on the door come loose, pulverizing the
WHAM! The door to the stairs bulges outward as something
SMASHES against it again and again. Frenzied SCRATCHING.
The man sprints to the other end of the roof. There, on the
THE CHINESE PREACHER'S POV
Just one floor below on the building across the alley is a
suspended PAINTERS' PLATFORM, crowded with paint cans under a
tarp. A two-story old EYEWEAR ADVERTISEMENT from the 40's is
being painted over.
THE CHINESE PREACHER
Looks back to the door. BAM! a tremendous SHATTERING sound.
LIGHT spills from inside. Two bolts fly in the air, a hinge
He CRIES OUT in terror.
The man gauges the distance between buildings; can he make
He takes a few steps back, a few more...
Panting hard, he closes his eyes, his chest soaked in blood
THE DOOR EXPLODES OUTWARD AND SKIDS ACROSS THE SLIPPERY ROOF.
Light from inside projects the shadow of wild, busy things
onto the curtain of rain.
Weeping with fear, the man desperately tries to hurl himself
to the catwalk.
It's too far.
He FALLS...CRASH! he hits the platform, knocking boards
loose and sending paint cans onto their sides, rolling. He
bounces, slides off the edge, barely able to grab onto a
loose board to save himself from falling.
The RAIN blasts down. The scaffold CREAKS. He hits the
edge, upsetting the cans of paint there.
He holds onto the planks with all his might, trying to push
with his feet, but they slide on the wet wall.
Cans bounce off the pavement. White pain blasts all over.
The man's hands slip on the planks, tiring.
The Chinese Preacher's FEET bicycle in the air, unable to
find a purchase on the wet brick wall-
THE CHINESE PREACHER
is hanging just in front of the painted EYE of the forties'
model. He looks up above him, sees something-
No. Please, God, no!
A SHADOW crosses his face as something looms above him.
Suddenly there is a CRACK and the platform tilts completely
on one end.
The Chinese Preacher's fingernails dig in, then slip on the
His hands paw the air.
For a moment his body, silhouetted in the rain, seems
suspended in a void. Then he falls backwards.
Impact. His body cracks the pavement.
Small pools of rain form on his dead, open eyes.
We CRANE to reveal
A WINDOW ON A BUILDING ACROSS THE STREET
CHUY, a young Latino boy. He stares out the window at the
Chinese Preacher's body with no discernable emotion.
He works a small WIRE SCULPTURE in his hands.
It's a small one-bedroom apartment.
An old man sleeps peacefully on a cot: Chuy's grandfather.
MANNY GAVIOLA, mid 60's, white hair haloes his handsome,
All around him: SHOES, shoes everywhere you look, on the
table, on the chairs, on the kitchen counter, on the floor.
A small altar is illuminated by votive candles. Next to it,
standing by the window is
We see a blurry vision of The Chinese Preacher's splayed
figure in a swirl of color.
Chuy's attention focuses on the Preacher's shoes.
Oxfords, 8 1/2. Black...
He looks away from the body and goes back to twisting the
wire into shape.
THE PUDDLE OF PAINT
around the preacher, reflects large shadows moving above,
and across the neon sign...
hears a strange sound, a rhythmic clicking.
His head lifts and what he sees causes his expression to
change--there is an uncharacteristic flicker of excitement in
ACROSS THE ROOFTOP
We are behind whatever it is that has captured Chuy's
The strange clicking sound grows louder. The figure begins
moving in some weird, preparatory fashion. Then it steps
forward and drops out of frame.
His eyes follow the figure down to the pavement in a slow
Chuy puts down the wire miniature and opens the window to get
a better view.
The Chinese Preacher's body is now being dragged toward the
rear of the alley, leaving colored paint smears in its wake.
We isolate the boy's face and, on the soundtrack, every other
noise FADES AWAY.
Chuy reaches for a pair of SPOONS nearby.
He begins to click them together.
Imitating the strange clicking sound heard a moment ago.
THE CHINESE PREACHER
is being pulled into a small, ground-level vent. The only
problem is that no human is small enough to squeeze through
watches, still clicking with his spoons.
THE CHINESE PREACHER'S BODY
is stuck. One of his legs is through the hole up to the
thigh, but the other is folded up unnaturally and pressing
against the wall next to the vent. Impossible.
There is a silent beat, and then a series of INCREDIBLY
VIOLENT TUGS, BAM! BAM! BAM! shaking the Paint-soaked body
like a rag doll.
His spoons stop. His jaw tightens a little as we hear
terrible cracking and scraping sounds.
The Chinese Preacher's head and hands disappear into the
hole. Bits of clothing, paint and blood stick to the edges of
watches, still fascinated.
Funny, funny shoes...
He starts a new wire sculpture.
EXT. JOGGING PATH - CENTRAL PARK - DAWN
Peter is covered in sweat, running at a good clip around the
Central Park reservoir. A beautiful day dawns behind him; the
windows of the Beresford sparkle in the morning sun.
Peter outperforms most of the other RUNNERS in the track, his
steady rhythm evidence of years of practice. Keeping his
stride, he runs off the track and past a flock of OLD NUNS.
Excuse me, ladies...
Without slowing down, Peter retakes the path and moves past
EXT. JOGGER'S PATH - NEAR FIFTH AVENUE - LATER
Peter finally slows down. He checks his pulse and stops at a
As he drinks, he sees a DERELICT drawing a figure on the
The derelict spots Peter. He picks up his chalk, drifts off.
Intrigued, Peter goes closer to the drawing. An arrow points
to a manhole cover set among the bushes.
Peter circles around, trying to make sense out of the lines.
Then the painted motif finally reveals itself.
A talismanic figure of raw, archetypal power. A few jagged
lines form the shape of a MAN IN AN OVERCOAT. His face is
little more than a malignant blotch.
INT. MUSEUM - EXHIBIT ROOM - DAY
A room of half-finished exhibits. A group of SCULPTORS --
most of them undergraduates -- work on a gigantic piece
representing a termite mound. They're supervised by SIRI, a
punkish young Indian research assistant.
Susan talks to some of the sculptors about a 100-1 scale
clay model of an insect's head. She gestures to the
model's mandible set.
...no, guys, these have to fit
perfectly. No spaces in between. Let
me tell you why. Insects have no
hands. All they have is this set of
She grabs the outer mandible set.
See? This little piggy will grab the
Then unfolds a second set...
Then this little piggy will tear it
And a third!!!
...and this little one will grind it
to a pulp and push it in... all the
way into the mouth. These are
precision tools here. Can you
The guys nod.
Good. Then get it right.
A piece of the termite mound is raised above their heads,
...Peter, at the entrance, still dressed in his jogging
sweats. He smiles at Susan.
Peter and Susan walk through. Peter pulls something from a
KNAPSACK. A bottle of medicine marked: METALLININ.
"Baby in a bottle..."
He gives it to Susan.
Around them, WORKMEN begin unloading crates of display stuff,
as a MAN on a ladder tacks up an "ARCHITECTS OF NATURE"
banner. Susan proceeds behind an exhibit representing a
honeycomb. Peter follows as she begins to arrange some tools.
You know where they get this
fertility stuff? They extract it
from the urine of menopausal Italian
Monks bottle their own wine. Don't
She gently touches her belly.
Trust me. I've never been this late.
She shakes the bottle.
If nun's pee is what it takes...
Peter's cellular RINGS from his knapsack. Susan grabs a
larvae model from a pile on the floor.
You were the one who ran around with
ice in his underwear, don't forget
Don't get kinky here...
Peter takes the call. Susan cuts away the excess plastic on
the lid around the honeycomb moldings. The larvae fits
Okay, meet me out front.
I gotta go. Josh's picking me up in five.
see you tonight.
I'll be late.
He kisses her and leaves. Susan turns to Siri and the group
working on that sculpture.
Siri, sandblast that thing. It looks
like Trump Tower. Those mounds are
supposed to be made of dirt and
(a wicked smile)
Just like Trump Tower, then.
A Department of Health VAN honks its way through a traffic
Peter's right hand man, JOSH MASLOW -- a young, good-natured,
can-do guy -- drives.
...So I say "buddy, you have every
violation in the book. Gimme one
good reason not to close you down."
You know what the Kraut says to me?
In the back, Peter finishes changing out of his jogging
sweats and into his worksuit.
The blintzes! "Try the blintzes..."
Selling your sould for a fistful of
Not just any carbohydrates, mind you.
It was like being on the receiving
end of some kind of transcendent oral
We should get a strobe on this thing.
Maybe even a siren.
Yeah, and a loudspeaker so you can
yell "Epidemic! Epidemic! You're all
going to die!"
EXT. FLOPHOUSE - DAY
The Department of Health van pulls up outside the flophouse
where the Chinese Preacher died. Peter and Josh get out.
COPS push back a few ONLOOKERS. Josh proudly flashes his DOH
The cops let them pass.
You really love flashing that thing,
Hey. I'm a short guy. Waddaya want?
Two cops -- WOYCHEK and RICE -- approach, in no real hurry.
Peter Tyler, DOH. You gentlemen were
the first on the scene?
(gestures to Rice)
We were both on patrol, saw this paint
mess. Then I looked through that cellar
window. We both did...
You gone in?
No. We waited.
Peter peeks through a narrow cellar window on the floor.
Through the oily, smeared window, a ghostly array of PALE
FACE AND HANDS appears, startling him.
Get the EMT's in there, now.
PARAMEDIC AMBULANCES rush in. Sirens at full blast.
Stepping out of the building across, Manny walks next to
Chuy, who holds his hand. The old man carries a box full of
Chuy looks back at the cop circus, amused.
C'mon Chuy, we're gonna be late.
(discreetly crossing himself)
Cops are bad news. Don't look at them.
He gently pulls his grandson's hand and moves briskly away.
uses an iron bar, and breaks a padlocked cellar door. A heavy
stench emanates from inside. The cops cover their noses.
Peter and Josh enter a dingy, dungeon-like cellar,
illuminated only by bug zappers and emergency lights. Every
door and window has been nailed shut or sports a heavy-duty
padlock. Peter and Josh walk through the dismal scene.
In sharp contrast with the dirt-smeared walls, we see shiny
metallic SEWING MACHINES and swatches of cloth appliqued with
a FUNNY BUNNY cartoon character.
Josh examines the label stitched into the collar. It reads:
PROUDLY MADE IN USA.
His light hits a group of quivering, skeletal CHINESE
IMMIGRANTS, standing in a tight group against a wall.
(from the outside)
They look real sick, don't they?
INT. STAIRWELL, MUSEUM - DUSK
Carrying boxes full of terrarium material, Susan and Siri
ride an antiquated cage-steel elevator. No floor buttons,
just an old-fashioned hand-activated lever.
...as long as they're ready for the
opening I don't care, just tell them
I'm on it. Don't worry.
Look, Susan...I don't mean to pry,
but... I kinda overheard you and
Watch your step, Siri. Your grant
could be on the line here.
I just...well, I had this cousin in
Delhi. She was having problems, too.
She used a baster.
Susan looks at her.
Not a big one. I mean, it was like a
She tries to stop the elevator at the fourth floor, but
it rises just a little too far.
Come on, darlin'...
Susan has to jimmy the lever till the elevator falls
level to the floor.
She kept it under her bed. Thing is,
it kinda worked. I mean, she had to
hide it from her husband, but...
A pair of young boys, RICKY and DAVIS, sit on the floor
outside Susan's lab door. A crumpled paper bag and a shoe
box sit beside them.
Oh, right... They been here since noon.
I told them you're real busy.
Susan smiles at the boys, who stand when they see her.
You the bug lady, right?
I suppose so.
Ricky raises and shakes the paper bag.
We're here to deal.
INT. MOUNTING ROOM - DUSK
SUNLIGHT slants in to illuminate an incredible array of live
and mounted dead INSECTS, trapped in turn-of-the-century
glass fronted cabinets. Davis puts his nose up against one,
Metaxonycha Godmani, Trigonopelastes
Delta. Field Butterflies. Have you been
She examines the boys' findings, mostly rag-tag specimens
of battered butterflies.
I guess they got lost in this city.
So, you wanna buy em?
There's extra wings in the bag.
Siri lingers in the background.
You guys have done a nice job. How bout
Show her the weirdbug.
He indicates the shoebox-
Cost a dollar just to look.
It's a great bug. We kinda broke it a
Siri impatiently points at the wall clock-
Fellas, I'll tell you what...ten dollars
for everything. Plus a killing jar, some
tweezers and mounts so the next bunch you
catch will be in better shape.
You crazy! That's the best!!
Bug's almost dead anyway.
Susan holds out two five dollar bills. The boys can't
resist. Davis grabs the money-
Ricky gives a last possessive look to the shoe box, then
follows Davis out.
Siri crosses to the window and wrestles to close it.
Susan places all the kid's items -including the shoebox- in
Alphabet City kids- there's much worse
things they could be selling.
Siri hits the window frame with a paperweight, gets it half
I hate this fucking window...
EXT. ACROSS STREET FROM MUSEUM - NIGHTFALL
CRANE TO a nearby alley.
A GAUNT MAN IN AN OVERCOAT stands in the shadows, looking up
at Siri working on the window.
As a streetlamp lights up, he backs up into the shadows.
INT. FLOPHOUSE. LOBBY - NIGHTFALL
Religious slogans and posters are hung everywhere in what
used to be the lobby of a men's hotel. A hand-lettered sign:
"NO LIQUOR, NO DRUGS, NO PROFANITY"
PARAMEDICS are leading a number of ill CHINESE IMMIGRANTS up
from the cellar door seen earlier. Many are brought out on
STRETCHERS. DOH staff put tags on their wrists.
Peter examines a PALE OLD MAN on a stretcher while
simultaneously talking to Josh.
There's plenty of systemic infection
already, so as soon as we get a
preliminary reading, start them on
anti-biotics. You saw this?
Peter flicks on his penlight, examines the Old Man's eyes.
One of them is completely bloodshot. Then he shows Josh
the gums. They're bleeding.
Internal hemorrage. 2 our of 5 have
it. No definite signs of TB, but we'll
quarantine them a week just to make sure.
Immigration's gonna love you for that.
Tell them to send flowers to the
INT. SWEAT SHOP. BASEMENT
Peter pushes back a sheet hung across a doorway.
A tiled nightmare. Concentration camp-cozy. A pile of old,
rusting sewing machines clutter the floor, spilling
oxide to a central grate.
Two shifts, people rotating from bed to
work. One toilet. We're in Wal-Mart
Josh swats a fly.
Did they get the sleazebag who owns this
Triad, Chinese Mafia. They bring people
from Yunan. Slave labor...
(eyes his notebook)
Reverend Harry Wong, a preacher had the
flophouse fronting for them. No sign of
An overhead door is opened. Daylight streams in. Peter spots
YANG, an Asian cop, talking to a CHINESE WOMAN lying on a
stretcher which hasn't been moved yet. She is hollow-eyed,
near death. Her hand weakly hangs on to the cop as if for
Tell her she's going to be alright.
We'll take care of her.
Peter kneels next to her, looking at her and nodding while
Yang translates. The woman mutters again, tears of fear in
her eyes. Yang shakes his head.
She's delirious. Keeps saying the "Dark
Angels" are coming for her. She says
they took some of her people away.
Probably a gang. Chinese people, man.
They come up with some wacky stuff.
They pull the stretcher out through the open overhead door
and into an
The stretcher is rolled into a waiting vehicle, its lights
flashing. Unseen by them, on a brick wall, nearly buried by
graffiti, is a crude DRAWING.
It is of the same, odd figure Peter saw drawn earlier. The
INT. LAB - NIGHT - MONTAGE
Susan and Siri, both wearing Walkman headsets, deftly mount
BUTTERFLIES and other INSECTS onto display boards for the
exhibit. Rain is blowing in through the half-open window.
Their movements are precise and lyrical, the colors and
designs of the insects are beautiful.
We understand how you can get lost in this world. Susan
works steadily, a partially-eaten PAY-DAY BAR and the
wrappers of several others are evidence of her dinner.
A PAGER goes off in Susan's lab coat.
She takes off her headset; CLASSICAL MUSIC leaks from her
On the PAGER's LCD screen the message reads: LATE
Susan puts the pager down. Goes to close the window.
There is a loud, angry BUZZING sound.
Siri pulls her headset off; HEAVY METAL MUSIC leaks from her
The BUZZING sound again. We PAN across the various bugs and
mounting implements till we come to rest...
...on the SHOEBOX the boys gave Susan. Something rattles
Susan crosses to the trash bin, picks the box out. It
vibrates on her hand, then becomes quiet, something moves
She slowly opens the lid.
The bottom of the box is littered with two inches of shredded
newspaper. Crumbs of bread and some rice-krispies can be
spotted here and there: a kid's idea of a comfy critter's
nest. She moves her free hand closer.
Suddenly and INSECT big as her hand springs out of the
shredded paper nest and tries to grab on to her! Minute
pieces of paper fly through the air!!
Susan slaps the lid back down.
(a scared whisper)
Could you...help me...?
Siri comes over as Susan grabs steel tongs and a cork
I'm gonna pull it out and I want you to
pin it down, okay?
What is it?
I have no idea. Are you ready?
Siri nods, pins in hand. Susan opens the lid and grabs the
nymph with the tongs. The creature goes berserk, flailing
its spindly limbs, BUZZING and CROAKING, a milky substance
FOAMING out of its body.
Oh my God...
Susan deposits the insect onto the corkboard.
Siri tries to get a hold of it; but it twists out of the
tongs and wraps its coarse legs around her hand!! A spider
trapping a sparrow.
Shit!! Get it! Get it!
SNAP! It bites her hand between index and forefinger.
Susan pins the insect into the corkboard. It spins furiously,
like a crazy LP record.
Susan gets a grip on it again with the tongs. Siri uses more
pins to secure it down.
(Noticing Siri's hand)
It bit you.
leans to get a closer look at the NYMPH: Deep dark brown,
flat as a pancake, one rear leg broken, lower tail smashed.
It squirms helplessly now, looking pitiful under the harsh
This wing configuration. I've
(looking at her injury)
Fuck! It broke the skin...
And they're not fully developed. This
thing's not even an adult.
The nymph continues to HISS and FOAM, struggling against the
steel pins. Susan looks closely at the insect's belly.
Susan gestures to look. Siri stares down at
THE NYMPH'S TORSO
where a SET OF VALVES on its underside click in and out.
shakes her head.
That's impossible. Insects don't...
(Picks up a SCALPEL)
Help me get a sample.
Susan touches her scalpel to the nymph's leg.
The nymph CLICKS nervously.
Hold on, big guy, hold on...
She traps the nymph down and CUTS THE LEG OFF.
A painful, agonized BUZZ echoes around the room.
Susan attaches the insect's leg to a samll holder. It is
frozen in a swirl of dry ice.
The brittle leg is then mounted in a LASER MICROTOME. Bit by
bit, the machine executes MICROSCOPIC WAFER CUTS. Siri is
making slides out of each section.
A series of MICROPHOTOGRAPHIC IMAGES flash onto the screen.
In the background we hear the high-pitched BUZZ-
We see the lights from the mounting room through a glass
INT. MOUNTING ROOM - NIGHT
We see the nymph slowly squirming in the FG, then RACK FOCUS
to the rain-spattered WINDOW.
Suddenly the OVERCOAT MAN is standing on the windowsill!
The window is lifted effortlesly from the outside.
prepares a blue solution and places two drops on each smear
Reflected in the glass brick behind her we see the man moving
across the room.
THE OVERCOAT MAN
seen only through rippled glass and reflections, moves
through the lab.
His body STEAMS lightly from the rain. His movements are
The man observes the imprisoned insects with curiosity.
He comes to the nymph, pinned and mutilated on the worktable.
The nymph CLICKS and CHITTERS excitedly, as if communicating
with the man.
He looks up at the worklight. It seems to bother him.
WHUMP!!! In a blur of motion, he SMASHES the light bulb.
watches the smear slide. The blue droplets begin to CHANGE
COLOR once in contact with the leg section...
Hold on a second...
...slowly turning a deep green.
Then, THREE LARGE BEETLES fly into the room.
Siri looks at Susan. Susan gets up, hesitant, signals for
Siri to stay.
We FOLLOW Susan into the mounting room.
She walks in, barely able to see her hand in front of her
The window facing the street is wide open, rain blowing in.
Something CRUNCHES under her feet. She bends down, looks.
She's stepped on the broken glass of the lightbulb.
The floor is alive with various INSECTS -- crawling, hopping,
flying away from their displays, which have been opened.
The nymph is gone from the board!
She looks under the work table the nymph was on.
We LOWER as we TRACK BACK with her. Something is folded up
in the corner of the ceiling behind her, camouflaged in the
shadows, clinging impossibly to the wall.
THE OVERCOAT MAN.
He lowers himself with silent grace.
WHOOSH! A GUST OF WIND! A FLUTTERING SHADOW OFF THE WINDOW!
Susan GASPS, startled. We SHIFT to see Siri at the door.
EXT. FLOPHOUSE - NIGHT
The last DOH van takes off under the heavy rain.
Across the street, Chuy looks down from his apartment window.
INT. MANNY'S APARTMENT - SAME
Chuy sits at the window, twisting wire into a human-like
figure. MOVING past him, we see a group of other WIRE
FIGURES on the table, backs of chairs, lamps, everywhere.
Manny sits at the kitchen table. He IGNITES a can of shoe
polish with a match, then lights a cigarette off the flame.
He puts the cigarette in his mouth and proceeds to polish a
pair of shoes. A SILLY SHOW plays over the TV.
Not too little, not too much. You rub it
in, around and around like this. Let the
leather take it.
Manny leans tiredly against the table. He looks fatigued
and in pain. He takes a small pill and places it under
You watching? You should learn to
work the shoes. You're good with your
Manny shoots a glance over to his grandson.
Chuy...you gonna get all wet.
Chuy doesn't pay attention, just stares out at the street.
Did you look at the story book I got you?
Manny lifts a brightly colored CHILDREN'S BOOK.
Our Animal Friends. Can you say that,
Nothing from Chuy.
CHUY'S POV - STREET
The building across the street. Yellow DOH tape at the
A friend is the one you can trust. When
you are with a friend, no matter where in
the world, you are at home.
A FIGURE moves out of the shadows and totters in the rain
toward the entrance. It is the OVERCOAT MAN, barely visible
in the rain.
In this city. A friend is a hard thing to
His face shows a bit of animation.
Manny looks up from the book.
Alli. Mr. Funny Shoes.
Manny comes over, looks out.
The figure has disappeared into the dark front of the
MANNY AND CHUY
No one is there. Is empty.
Chuy doesn't respond. Manny turns the boy's face to his.
Chuy, listen to me. They have Jesus on
the cross, but that is not a holy place.
Chuy looks at him blankly. Manny sighs; he knows he doesn't.
Ah, Nino. God only knows what goes on in
your head, eh?
He pats the boy on the head, then goes back to work. Chuy
turns back to stare at the street.
Mr. Funny Shoes...
EXT. OUTSIDE TYLER APARTMENT BUILDING - NIGHT
The D.O.H. Van pulls up in front of a modest Pre-war
building. Josh and Peter climb out.
Peter is reviewing a roster.
Josh, what was Immigration's
Josh hands Peter a plastic bag with his sweat clothes
and running shoes.
Peter hands him the roster.
There are thirty five listed in the
reverend Wong's roster...
Peter walks up the front steps.
Remember what that woman said, about
people being taken? Check with the
copsin the area.
INT. TYLER APARTMENT - NIGHT
Peter enters the apartment, which has long since been
remodeled with a nicer couch and a bigger TV with slightly
No answer. He notices the dining room table is filled with
yellowed FILES, all marked JUDAS TRADITOR.
(Looks around once again)
INT. LAUNDRY ROOM
Peter comes in to find Susan sitting in a chair before a
dryer, quietly watching laundry whirl within.
(Regarding the laundry.)
Thought it was my week for that.
I needed to think. It was either this
or the weather channel.
Peter walks over, kisses her. He notices an open book of
INSECT MORPHOLOGY on her lap. There's a FULL COLOR
PHOTOGRAPH of an OOTHECA -- an insect eggcase.
INT. LAUNDRY ROOM - LATER
Peter folds laundry into his/her piles. Susan paces.
This thing was the size of my fist,
Peter!! That's off the charts!
Okay. So you lost a great specimen-
Don't you get it? It's more than
Peter takes a bedsheet. Susan helps him fold it.
You know why insects don't grow larger?
Because they don't have a complex
respiratory system. What I saw did. It
Peter walks backward with his end of the sheet. The two
begin to fold it together.
Evolution doesn't work that fast.
Something pushed that thing to take the
leap. We need to find another specimen.
As they fold the sheet, they move closer together.
I did a PH test on its tarsal pads.
The folding of the sheet has brought them almost face to
face. Susan finishes folding herself.
There's only two species who match the
enzymes I found. One's a leaf-cutter ant
in the Amazon...
She has his full attention now.
The other we released here two years ago.
EXT. ALPHABET CITY - AVENUE B - DAY
A TAXI CAB makes a U turn and cruises on.
Susan ignores the yakking Armenian DRIVER as she scans
the buildings and empty lots-
Avenue B... again! Maybe you got
wrong letter, uh?
The cabbie looks up at a Manhattan street map glued over
his head on the roof of the cab.
Keep going. We'll tell you when to
Maybe they lied to you.
Even if they did... that's all we
have, isn't it?
The cab cruises past the tenement buildings, nondescript
stores, junked cars and rubble-strewn lots. It stops
before a traffic light.
A LEERING HOMELESS GUY with a greasy rag and greasier
cleaning solution approaches the windshield.
No... Oh, shit. Get away, you Turk!
The Homeless guy begins wiping/smudging the windshield
with his dirty rag. The driver sends him away.
The light turns green. The Driver accelerates, turning
on the windshield wipers to expunge the smears left by
Susan sees something.
Susan motions excitedly. The Driver pulls over. Susan
EXT. OUTSIDE CAR
Susan rushes over, removes something from the windshield
A BUTTERFLY, its wing pinned under the rubber flapper.
She holds it in her palm, then looks up at Peter.
Susan looks around. Just ahead is an empty LOT surrounded by
a wooden fence plastered with flyers for rock bands and
An identical BUTTERFLY perches on the edge of a board.
EXT. EMPTY LOT
Susan and Peter walk through waist-high GRASS of a small
urban wilderness. Dozens of BUTTERFLIES flutter around them
from the weeds.
If you want your money back, forget it!
Peter and Susan look up. The voice comes from a RAMSHACKLE
CLUBHOUSE, built of wood scraps and cardboard.
We already spent it!
Susan walks forward.
We're here to deal.
Long beat. The door to the clubhouse swings open.
INT. SUBWAY STATION - DAY
A BLUR of subway cars goes by with an ear-pulverizing SOUND.
At the end of the platform, Davis untwists a wire around the
busted lock of a locker room door. Peter paces nervously
Here, let me...
He starts on it himself. Meanwhile, Ricky stares at a
PHOTOGRAPH Susan has given to him: a ribbed, tortoise-
brown colored EGGCASE.
You sure you didn't see one of these?
Gross. What is it?
An "Ootheca". An eggcase. It probably had
more, uh "weirdbugs" inside.
(shakes his head)
No way. I see one of those, I'd puke.
Davis opens the door with a CLICK.
INT. SUBWAY LOCKER ROOM
A dark, abandoned LOCKER ROOM once used for transit workers.
Susan and Peter walk in with the boys, nervous in the off-
It was in that corner over there.
Davis points to a bank of dented metal LOCKERS.
Sucker was fast, man.
(Picks up a pipe.)
Had to take it out with one a these.
Okay, guys. We'll take it from here.
Peter hands Ricky some money. The boy looksdown at it
Make it ten an' we won't tell the cops
Peter regards the little scam artist dryly.
Let's keep it at five and I won't
condemn your clubhouse.
Peter hands him a couple of dollars more. The two boys
Peter removes a PENLIGHT from his pocket.
Dust covers everything. A forest of COPPER TUBING and PIPES
where the sinks used to be.
inspects the floor. It's littered with cheap objects:
chipped combs, used rubbers, soggy newspapers, smeared
Something shiny catches his eye. He picks it up.
Look, a broken tooth...
Something rustles nearby.
He notices an old, rotting poster on the back wall. It
seems ODDLY TEXTURED somehow. He walks toward it.
kneeling, pushes aside a dented trash bin. Behind it, there
is a cabinet with rusty sliding doors.
A SUBWAY TRAIN RUMBLES by outside, the sound echoes off
the tile walls.
Susan forces the door back. She peeks through the opening.
Her face stares back at her from a dirty pocket mirror.
She starts pulling something out.
at the oddly texture wall. He shines the penlight at it...
...and is met with a FLUTTER OF WINGS. MOTHS, perfectly
camouflaged against the poster on the wall, whiz past him.
turns back to her locker. She withdraws a cheap PLASTIC
NECKLACE from it. As she removes it, it breaks. A coulpe of
beads fall away...
...rolls under the locker...
...and BOUNCE -- once, twice, thrice -- each time going
deeper till they comes to a stop.
Susan peers where the beads fell.
There's something under here.
Peter comes over, kneels by her. Susan takes a handful of
beads and throws them at the base of the locker.
CAMERA TRACKS to follow one of them. It rolls all the way
A moment later, from some interior space, the sound of it
BOUNCING on cement. He shines his light inside.
INT. HOLE - PETER'S HAND
Very dark. A highlight glints off a shell-like surface.
The light barely touches it.
THE WHOLE SURFACE BACKS AWAY.
Peter drops the penlight. It gets stuck in a jutting piece
Peter tries to get his hand in
But he cannot reach the light. It is literally inches from
Let me try. My hands are smaller.
She kneels and goes for it.
INT. HOLE - SUSAN'S HAND
Her hand reaches for the penlight.
She barely touches it. The penlight spins around. Its light
THE FACE OF A MAN. Unseen by Susan. Terrifying in its doll-
like simplicity. In the darkness, its features seem
indiscernable, inert, almost frozen in a perfectly
It regards the spiderlike movement of Susan's fingers.
face squinches with the effort.
Honey, just leave it.
INT. HOLE - SUSAN'S HAND
As Susan's hand moves closer, the strange Face begins to
A CLICKING SOUND.
Susan's hand is almost there.
And suddenly A BEAM OF LIGHT cuts through the darkness.
Their vision resolves. The figures of two MTA COPS stand
before them: ERNEST, 50, burly and bull-necked; and LEONARD
-- African American, 45, more formidable than fat.
Now don't tell me.
Susan's hand withdraws.
You lost a token, right?
INT. SUBWAY PLATFORM - LATER
SHH-SHH-SHH. A felt rag is expertly being pulled across a
set of pristine black shoes.
REVEAL Leonard sitting like a king in a chair, getting his
shoes shined by Manny. He leans back laconically while
arguing with Peter. Ernest examines the ootheca picture.
Look, I showed you my badge...
Yeah, and you gonna have to show me a lot
bigger one you wanna go down there.
That's the old maintenance grid, Doc.
Swiss cheese: tunnels, tracks...
The Department of Public Health...
...should know better'n to go sneakin'
around my turf...
Fine. You want me to call your
Please do. He's a lonely guy.
Uninterested, Leonard looks over to Susan and Chuy.
ANGLE ON SUSAN
She leans against the wall, inspects her dirty hand. Ernest
gives her his handkerchief.
Gucci. Flat pump.
She looks down at Chuy, who sits nearby, holding a PAIR OF
She stares down at her shoes. Gucci flat pumps, all right.
Just then, a SUBWAY TRAIN pulls up. The doors open,
disgorging passengers. Chuy flips into action. He starts
playing his spoons, CLICKING them together, slapping them
against his knee.
Susan watches in wonder as the boy begins to use the spoons
to IMITATE the different rhythmical step patterns of the
VARIOUS COMMUTERS: The rolling, comical gait of A FAT MAN,
the lithe haughty step of A PRIM LADY.
(Laughs. To Chuy.)
That's wonderful! What grade are you in?
Chuy doesn't answer.
No school. Shoes're all Chuy knows about.
Ernest discreetly points to his forehead.
He can imitate anything, you just watch
(Irritably, to Leonard)
Excuse me, I'm talking to you.
No, you talkin' at me.
Leonard hands Manny a $5.00 bill for the shine, gets up and
walks past Peter as if he were invisible.
(discreetly, to Susan)
Is there some reward for this?
I guess that could be arranged.
Ernest smiles, pockets the ootheca picture.
For Chrissakes. You gonna lay a two-
bit bureaucratic, territorial number
You wanna keep up the conversation, you
best come back with the proper permits
and the right attitude.
Leonard saunters away with Ernest in tow.
Peter shakes his head angrily. He takes Susan by the arm,
heads off in another direction.
Chuy, without watching, clicks his spoons to the imitation of
INT. SUBWAY STAIRS - DAY
Susan and Peter walk up the stairs; Peter still fumes.
You give someone a fucking uniform
and... Did you hear how he talked to us?
I heard how you talked to him.
Oh, so I'm the bad guy now?
Susan spares him an ironic look.
He was just doing his job.
Fine, then I'm the bad guy. Jesus!
At the top of the stairs they're completely engulfed by
He wants a permit, I'll get him a
INT. SUBWAY TRACKS - DUSK
A train blurs by.
A FLASHLIGHT BEAM over dirty gravel. TILT with the beam to
see Ernest walking his beat past TRACKS and GIRDERS. Hulking
out-of-service SUBWAY CARS surround him. He shines his light
on the ootheca picture and then around him at the walls.
A SOUND catches his attention. A RUSTLING.
He notices something off to a corner, walks over to it.
A SHINY BROWN LUMP in the corner, covered in garbage.
He touches the lump with his shoe. It STIRS slightly.
He touches it again...
...and a PAIR OF LEGS suddenly LASH OUT, kicking at him
Ernest jumps back.
Another SET OF LEGS emerges...
Oddly enough, Ernest relaxes.
He grabs the surface of the lump, and pulls it. We see that
it was just a SHINY BROWN TARP.
Underneath, a group of THREE HOMELESS PEOPLE -- emaciated,
toothless -- sleeping intertwined for warmth. In the dim
light, they almost seem like a single organism.
The Homeless People stare back at him mutely. Ernest starts
I told you to stick by the maintenance
Nah... It's private property now.
Ernest looks at her, confused.
He eats down there.
The homeless man points. Ernest turns his light.
Another SILHOUETTE of the OVERCOAT MAN drawn on the wall. An
arrow below it points east.
Graffiti artist, uh?
(To Homeless People)
Look guys, just get off my beat, you
hear? Get moving.
Ernest hustles them out. The homeless people glare at him,
pick up their things and head into the gloom.
Ernest watches them go. He turns back to the graffiti
painting of The Stickman.
INT. SUBWAY TUNNEL - LATER
Ernest walks deeper into the tunnels. Dusklight slants in
weakly from grates above.
He stops as a RUMBLE is heard ahead of him He ducks into a
recess in the wall. The RUMBLE grows LOUDER, LOUDER.
A SUBWAY TRAIN curves around the bend up ahead, its
HEADLIGHTS raking the opposite wall to reveal...
A FIGURE crouched over something.
We hear CHOMPING and SWALLOWING sounds.
Squinting to see over his flashlight beam.
No answer. Just the wet sounds of food getting chewed and
ingested. Ernest is revolted.
Get off my track...
The crouching figure lifts its head and looks around in a
unusually quick BLUR OF MOTION. It's the OVERCOAT MAN.
Another distant RUMBLE. Ernest's clothes flutter in the puff
of hot wind that signals an approaching train.
Ernest pulls a CAN OF MACE from his belt, begins to advance.
The Overcoat Man stands up.
Ernest stops in his tracks.
For he sees that the Overcoat Man is holding a large OBJECT
in his arms. Something wet and shiny with blood.
A dead dog.
The Overcoat Man drops the animal. It rolls slowly down his
...and is briefly caught BY ANOTHER SET OF ARMS EXTENDING
FROM HIS TORSO.
The Overcoat Man lets the animal fall to the ground. He
begins walking toward Ernest.
Ernest backs away.
The Overcoat Man LEAPS on him just as the SUBWAY TRAIN ROARS
CRACK! Ernest's body is twisted and crunched by powerful
Through the strobing windows we see Ernest enveloped by the
dark figure, then raised above, taken away.
The can of mace rolls next to the track as the TRAIN CLEARS.
The track is empty again.
INT. EXHIBITION HALL - BANNER
We PAN across the banner: 'ARCHITECTS OF NATURE'.
INT. EXHIBITION FLOOR
EXHIBITS under glass set up throughout the room: Insect
chambers and vaults of great complexity, etc.
An opening night CROWD of affluent MUSEUM PATRONS. All
tuxedoes and painted smiles. Some peremptorily peruse the
displays; most just camp out at the buffet table.
Peter enters, dressed in his worksuit. He scans the
room, sees Siri leaning against a wall by the buffet
table, drinking an orange juice. He goes over to her.
(Kisses her on the cheek.)
Where's the boss?
Siri gestures to the far end of the room. Susan stands
alone, sipping a chardonnay by an ANT MOUND exhibit.
Peter notices Siri seems unusually weary. She covers one
of her eyes.
It's just a headache. We were
sandblasting Trump Tower here since
four this morning.
Maybe you should sit...
I'm fine. Go talk to Susan. She could
use a good word right now.
She nods for him to go ahead. Peter leaves.
Siri closes her eyes. She rubs the bandage around the
insect bite on her hand.
approaches Susan. She's staring through thr glass panes
of the exhibit at the crowd of patrons. In the
refraction, their black tuxedoes and evening gowns seem
to blend into one another.
No such thing, baby.
She looks over at the crowd congregated around the
I get the feeling they came more for
the potroast than the apterids.
Fuck 'em. They don't know what
Peter looks at her.
Oh...nothing that a little
menopausal's pee daikiri couldn't
cure. Least that's what I thought.
Peter looks at her, notices that one of her hands is on
Oh, no, you were-
I was just late.
Susan nods. Peter takes her hand. They sit by the ant
Ironic, don't you think? These guys
can hatch hundreds of offspring in a
single clutch of eggs, right? And
here we are...
Susan, we're not b-
Susan looks up to see Siri standing on the other side of
the glass case.
I'm sorry. I think...I need...
One of her eyes is completely bloodshot. Her mouth is
bleeding. She puts her hand on the case to steady
Her fingers leave a STREAK OF BLOOD on the glass.
Siri collapses. The exhibit tips over.
Peter pulls Susan out of the way just as the exhibit
FALLS AND SMASHES TO THE GROUND!
The room erupts into COMMOTION.
Susan and Peter run to Siri, who lies unconscious on the
Peter gently turns her over.
Siri's BLEEDING from the corner of her mouth. Just like
the Chinese workers in the sweatshop.
Tuxedoed people encircle her next to the insect mounds.
SMASH CUT TO:
EXT. NEW YORK STREET - NIGHT
An ambulance races down the avenue toward a distant
INT. HOSPITAL - HALLWAY
Siri is rushed on a gurney toward the Emergency Room.
Peter and Susan walk next to it talking to DR. CHRIS
RAYMOND, a 35-year old ER physician.
...I think it's some kind of systemic
infection, Chris. I saw a few cases
like it yesterday. A sweatshop in
Okay, look. You better come in with
me. Help me through.
INT. EMERGENCY ROOM
Raymond, Peter, and several other ER STAFF work on Siri,
now lying on an operating table.
All hands on deck, Pete. Remember the
It'll come back to me.
RAYMOND inspects Siri's wounded hand. The bandage has
been removed. The bite-wound is infected and
suppurating. A large red circular RASH around it.
Looks like a Lyme disease rash.
It's not consistent with the internal
bleeding. Any idea what bit her?
Peter shakes his head.
I think we're gonna need to have that
An ASSISTANT finishes inserting a catheter down her
Blood and fluid leak up through the clear tube.
ABOVE THE OPERATING THEATER.
Staring down through the circular glass deck, Susan
silently observes the procedures.
INT. MANNY'S APARTMENT - NIGHT
Salmon-colored LIGHT slants in from sodium vapor streetlight.
PAN through the shadowy room, past Manny's sleeping form to
Chuy, asleep under a tent made of an old Star Wars blanket.
A RHYTHMICAL CLICKING SOUND is heard from outside.
Chuy pops his head out from under the blanket, listening.
EXT. FIRE ESCAPE - NIGHT
Wearing only his pajama bottoms, Chuy steps out on the fire
escape with his spoons in hand.
The CLICKING RESUMES from the building across the street.
The barefoot little boy crosses the street, steps through the
center of the huge PAINT STAIN on the sidewalk.
The CLICKING sound comes again.
The CLICKING comes again from inside the flophouse. It
continues a little bit, then stops.
Chuy CLICKS his spoons together, mimicking the sound.
Beat. A CLICKING from within again; almost an answer.
Chuy ducks under the yellow DOH tape, walks toward the front
of the building.
He comes to the boarded entrance. There is a hole, narrow,
and low in the doorway.
Chuy squats, begins to wriggle through it.
INT. FLOPHOUSE - LOBBY
Chuy steps into the lobby.
The CLICKING comes again, from further inside.
Chuy moves to find it.
Bits of STREETLIGHT slant in. Chuy walks slowly, listening.
He steps into the SHADOW of a LOOMING FIGURE. He turns...
CHUY'S POV - CRUCIFIX
We start on bleeding, nail-pierced feet, then TILT up the
twisted body to the face of Jesus, looking down.
stares without emotion at the plaster figure.
MOVEMENT to his side. He turns again.
A dimly-lit FIGURE stands before him.
Shapes fold and regroup in the darkness, resolving into the
tall figure of the OVERCOAT MAN.
The Man begins to emit the CLICKING NOISE from under his
chin, his whole head VIBRATING.
Chuy smiles. He has a beautiful smile.
Mr. Funny Shoes.
He plays his spoons, imitating the sound the figure made.
He is answered...but this time, it's from the other side of
the room. We PAN as he turns.
ANOTHER OVERCOAT MAN appears in the shadows.
Chuy GIGGLES, delighted.
INT. HOSPITAL - WAITING ROOM
Susan and Peter.
...you don't even know what you're
You said that thing was big as your
hand. I don't think I'm going to
Why take the chance? Just let me go
down there with you...
Susan glares at him. Peter sits down by her.
Susan, listen to me: you handled
that insect almost as much as Siri...
It didn't bite me.
I know. But if it was carrying
something...there's a chance you
could have been exposed.
Susan is silent.
Chris is going to run some blood
tests on you. I want you to stay here
till he's absolutely sure you're
clean. Okay? Then you'll call me...
You'll catch up with us...
Susan looks up at him. Finally, she nods.
We'll be all right, Sus. I promise.
He leans over, kisses her gently. But Susan seems
INT. MANNY'S APARTMENT - PREDAWN
The blue hours before dawn. Laconic movement outside. New
York dragging itself out of bed.
We FIND Manny fixing some melted cheese sandwiches on a hot
plate. He addresses Chuy's tented bed behind him.
My father saw me stay in bed, he'd go get
a pitcher. Cold water, whoosh, I tell you
that's some alarm clock, brrrrr!
Manny cuts the bread in four equal sections and arranges them
in a star-shaped pattern. A breakfast ritual of some kind.
Ah! There you go! The way you like 'em,
(He pours a glass of milk.)
We're low on milk, you remind Grampa to
pick some up tonight, okay?
He walks over to Chuy's tent bed. He pulls the sheets aside.
His grandson is gone.
EXT. SEWAGE FILTRATION PLANT - PREDAWN
Sewage water BUBBLES in huge tanks.
A WORKMAN walks down catwalks above the tank, disengaging the
larger pieces of debris from the filter areas with grappling
hooks. Shoes, tires, rags...
A GRINDING SOUND is heard. The Workman YELLS out to a
CONTROL BOOTH above.
Hold up! We gotta block on filter D.
SOUND of the pump coming to a halt.
The Workman walks to the filter area. He sinks his grappling
hook into the polluted waters.
Spooky, silent. The grappling hook moves like a scythe to the
...past long, soft filaments of RAGGED TISSUE...
...and connects with a LARGER FORM.
The Workman feels the grappling hook connecting. He gives a
YANK, hooking whatever it is.
He begins pulling it up.
A PALE FORM bubbles to the surface.
The Workman's face goes pale.
A grating VOICE from the control booth is heard over the P.A.
What's the problem?
It take the Workman a moment to speak.
I think it's a baby!
The Workman pulls the form (as if that will do any good)
toward the edge of the tank.
He bends down, and now gets his first good look at it.
The Workman SCREAMS.
His grappling hook falls from his hand, into the sewage.
INT. HOSPITAL - ICU WARD
Susan watches Siri from behind a pane of glass. Siri is
connected to a respirator, her vital signs monitored by
Raymond approaches Susan, two cups of coffee in his
How you feeling?
You tell me.
He smiles, gives her one of the cups.
Your blood tests were all negative.
You checked out.
Susan visibly relaxes. She looks back at the ICU ward.
What about Siri?
She's stable. I don't think there's
any immediate danger, but we'll have
to keep her under observation...
You think it's some form of
Strickler's, don't you?
Beat. Raymond shrugs.
Pathology's still working on the
tissue samples. If it is...it must
be an errant strain. Shorter
I'm sorry, Sue. We just don't know
INT. HOSPITAL - BATHROOM
At the sink, Susan runs water over her hands, her face,
trying to collect herself. She looks up in the mirror.
We see that her eyes are swollen, tear-stained.
INT. HOSPITAL - HALLWAY
She walks out of the ladies room, drying her face with a
SOUNDS of a nearby argument catch her attention.
...how many times I gotta tell you,
man: we can't accept this!
Well, what the hell else am I suppose
to do with it?
Susan heads in the direction of the voices.
INT. HOSPITAL - HALLWAY NEAR MORGUE
An ORDERLY (JEREMY) argues with an EMT. Their point of
contention: a small FORM lying on a stretcher.
Take it out back and throw it in the
Not unless somebody signs for it.
Susan walks toward them, catches sight of the tiny form.
Her eyes go wide.
Oh, my God.
Jeremy notices her.
Hey, you can't...
What's your name?
Okay, Jeremy...go get Dr. Chris
Raymond, will you?
Did you hear me? Get Dr. Raymond!
Jeremy hesitates. But if her tone wasn't enough, the
stare she gives him certainly is.
Jeremy backs away, takes off down the hall.
Susan approaches the stretcher.
Where'd you find it?
Washed up at the filtration plant on
Bank street. Some asshole there
thought it was a baby. They called
Susan bends over it. She covers her mouth and nose at
It's a lobster, right?
But it's not. What lies on the stretcher before them
looks more like a demon from a Brueghel painting.
A THREE FOOT INSECT. It's mephitic, pink-white body is
rotten, falling apart. The head's intact, with strange,
large jaws thrown wide open. The chitin on one is half
INT. SUBWAY LOCKER ROOM
Josh deposits a backpack full of equipment on the floor,
along with a small acrylic cage. Peter trains his FLASHLIGHT
into the bank of lockers.
Leonard, weary and pissed, looks at his watch.
Better hurry it up, Doc. My shift's
Josh hands him a piece of paper.
Guess someone requested you for
Peter braces his legs and tries to push the whole bank of
lockers clear--the locker section tips and falls with an
ENORMOUS BANG, which echoes loudly off the tile walls. Dust
When the dust settles and flashlights are focussed on the
area of the wall where the lockers stood, we see a LARGE
INT. MORGUE - DAY
Using a steel probe, Susan examines the dead insect.
Posterior sternites are gone...half the
protonum rotted off.
Raymond lifts one of the wings. A CLUMP OF WHITE LARVAE
feasts on the flesh underneath.
Near hatching. Thing must've died about
three weeks ago.
Susan closes the mandibles and examines them.
Do you have a polaroid?
INT. SUBWAY TRACKS
Water DRIPPING from overhead, ECHOING footsteps- very
spooky. Leonard leads Peter and Josh down the tunnel-
You all watch your step. We got some
burrows goin' down seven stories
here. You fall, I don't wanna have to
come pick you up.
(Whisper to Peter)
New York's finest.
Monumental archways give way to naves as big as Notre Dame.
Josh flashes the ultra-violet light over an abandoned
underground encampment, made of cardboard walls, electrical
wiring, elaborate debris kitchens. The walls are completely
taken by layer after layer of hand carved initials and
messages. Everything from "Kilroy was here" to
elaborate quotations from the bible.
There's really people living down here?
Mole people. This section was pretty
popular, all the way to Fulton Street...
Their flashlights shine in a haze of brown dust. The air is
Substance abusers, mental cases... Then
about a year ago, Poof! All gone. Rumors
got started... Someone found a couple of
They work their way down a steep incline. They're covered in
Down here's the land of talk, see? So the
wildest version goes the farthest. They
mark that area with a sign or a drawing,
and its as good as closed.
We had one fella... for years said he was
Bela Lugosi. Got him on Geraldo.
Peter's cellular rings. He picks up -big static-
Susan's got the phone up on her shoulder, clamped against her
ear. Raymond's cranking out a bunch of Polaroids. Color shots
of the insect, from every angle.
It's me. Can you hear me?
(phone, barely audible)
Yeah, barely. We haven't found
anything down here. Nothing...
Jeremy goes to the fridge for a beer.
The fridge light plays over the large insects jaws. It makes
out a few new ridges and valleys. Raymond snaps a couple of
I'm on my way. I've got something for you
to look at...
Susan notices something weird and undefinable about the
contours of the claws... But she can't put her finger on
BACK AT THE TUNNEL
We'll be back at the platform in...
20 minutes. If you don't go sight-seeing
The call is lost. Peter tries to change frequencies, but it's
Peter replaces the phone in his pocket. He walks off.
Funny. Shoulda seen some track
bunnies by now.
Track bunnies. Rats. They're
No one notices the OVERCOAT MAN carving on the wall.
INT. MANNY'S APARTMENT - NIGHT
On Manny's dining room table, a heap of unpolished shoes has
accumulated. The radio is playing a sad, elegiac Tango.
No, no, please understand... I can't
wait that long.
Looking disheveled and tired, Manny clutches the phone,
Please. I write it down.
2... 8... 7... 3. What does this mean
"case number"? Okay. So, now what? When
He holds a color snapshot of Chuy sitting on a mailbox.
No, I can't wait...no, listen...
Click. Manny slowly hangs up. He stares at his notepad, at
the number 2873.
Hijos de puta.
He crumples it up, throws it away, crosses to the window,
picks up Chuy's last wire figure-
Another human-looking figure, long and thin, but with
something slightly off about it.
It has six limbs instead of four!
frowns, looks down at the dark flophouse across the street.
Mr. Funny Shoes.
Distant thunder is heard.
Manny takes a STRAIGHT RAZOR from the bathroom cabinet, opens
EXT. SUBWAY STATION - DAY
Susan arrives at the stairs leading down to the subway
station. A COUPLE passes her on their way up.
A sign over the entrance says "STATION WILL CLOSE FOR REPAIRS
AT 3 PM - TOKENS ONLY". Susan looks around- the area is semi-
deserted, a bit creepy.
She takes a deep breath, descends.
INT. SUBWAY - DAY
Susan pushes through the turnstile, enters the long corridors
of gleaming tile, a somewhat de-humanizing atmosphere,
straight out of a George Tooker painting.
Very creepy. Susan's footsteps ECHO in the empty tunnel.
She sneaks a nervous glance over her shoulder- nobody is
PLATFORM "A" DELANCEY
Susan observes the locker room door impatiently. A small crew
of REPAIRMEN are dismantling a row of fluorescent lights.
She sits and waits.
INT. DEEP IN TUNNEL
Peter, Josh and Leonard walk through a darker area. The
floor beneath them suddenly changes, becomes tile.
Smells like acid.
Peter stops, looks around.
Josh walks to the right, where the smell seems to emanate
from. At last they come to
INT. VAULTED AREA - CONTINUOUS
Josh LIGHTS a flare, sets it on the ground, walks ahead. The
ominous RUMBLE of a subway is heard in the distance.
A cracked WATER MAIN above. Water dribbles to the ground.
There's some weird shit here.
Take a look.
Leonard shines his flashlight ahead.
Revealed, quite literally, is a world of shit.
LARGE FECES scattered everywhere: on the floor, hanging
sausage-like from the ceiling. One can almost taste the
stench of old ammonia.
Peter puts on a rubber glove, inspects one of the fecal
Fecal matter, unknown origin: weird
Whatever it is, it's not human.
Josh breaks off a sample, drops it in a jar with a hard
THUNK. Leonard turns away in distaste.
And it needs some metamucil.
EXT. FLOPHOUSE - NIGHT
It's raining like hell. Manny approaches the abandoned
He peeks through the boarded-up front entrance. Right there,
on the dusty lobby floor, clearer than the larger
...he discovers a trail of tiny, barefoot prints.
He kicks experimentally at the planks, but they're far too
Manny explores the opposite face of the building, looking for
a way in.
A DOG is BARKING incessantly. Manny turns.
Something moves in the shadows! Something long and thin,
haloed by the rain.
It moves again, the streetlight touching it for a fleeting
moment as it totters around to the rear of the building.
It's The Overcoat Man!
The man hurries past. Manny sprints after him.
Manny comes running around a pile of grocery crates.
There is the OVERCOAT MAN.
CARGO WORKERS mill around a group of vegetable trucks,
The OVERCOAT MAN attracts no attention. Keeping his head
down, staying near the shadowed buildings. Jumping and
hopping, he skitters into an alley.
Manny has to trot to keep up with the mysterious figure. He
pauses to take a pill and place it under his tongue.
Once it takes effect he moves on.
The OVERCOAT MAN has moved past a chainlink fence. How??
It's too high!!!
The old man squeezes through a jagged opening. The metal
fabric cuts his shirt.
On the other side: a dead end. Nowhere to go except
A SEWAGE GRATE
Manny lifts it.
Manny lands on his feet with considerable difficulty. He
flicks his lighter flame and opens the straight razor.
This pipe is carpeted with trash and a thick crust of dirt.
Something moves under a wet newspaper: a thick mass of long-
legged spiders dissolve onto the walls and floor.
Suddenly...the distant sound of spoons playing.
Manny pulls a rosary from his pocket, wraps it around
his wrist and crosses himself with the razor...
...then begins to move down the pipe.
PLATFORM "A" DELANCEY
Susan examines the Polaroids. She pulls out a payday bar.
The crew of repairmen are leaving.
Hey, Lady, all power will be down in
five minutes, okay?
She munches on the bar. She stops: one snapshot has caught
her attention. The fridge light illuminated this photograph.
Susan turns it around... and around... Trying to find
something different in the lines.
A train roars by.
Then she notices it:
The closed jaws. They look like A HUMAN FACE.
Gets up nervously and heads for the dor to the locker room.
A whole row of lamps goes off. The rest flickers in and
Then we see, now standing on her platform: THE OVERCOAT MAN!!
He looks at her between a row of columns under the dead neon
Susan tries the locker room door. It's unlocked.
INT. LOCKER ROOM - SUSAN
carefully crosses the floor to the bank of lockers.
She kneels to examine the hole in the wall. She nears a
THE OVERCOAT MAN is moving toward her.
The man's face TIPS BACK...
...raising the complex, glittering INSECT HEAD FROM BEHIND
ITS MASK-LIKE FRONT JAWS.
Its multi-parted MOUTH clicks OPEN.
The thing charges, its "coat" opening to reveal...SIX
LEATHERY WINGS, fully extended! The wingspan blocks the
whole tunnel, they vibrate rapidly.
Susan tries to run, but the creature -- hereafter known
simply as "The Mimic" -- LEAPS ONTO HER CHEST!
She's dragged screaming into the hole.
Their silhouettes recede rapidly amidst a confusion of legs,
wings and pipes.
INT. VAULTED AREA
Peter and Josh put the fecal samples into the back-pack.
Leonard stands at the other end of the area. He inspects some
OLD SCAFFOLDING set up at an opening which leads to
THE REMAINS OF AN OLD STATION
fifteen feet below.
I've never been this deep. This area
here is the Old Armory station. They
built it in the 40's. Ran out of money
It's like Grand Central's dead little brother. Tiled mosaic
walls, columns, monumental arches. Spaces for shops. A group
of abandoned turn-of-the-century subway cars on parallel
Okay, the fat lady's singing. Time to go.
Everything is gray with dust.
I want a team in here by six tonight,
hands and knees with toothpicks...
Leonard squints down at the planks of the scaffolding.
A NYMPH -- big as the one seen earlier -- emerges from a pile
of nearby feces as if it were part of the mound.
Keeping his eyes fixed on the insect, Leonard coolly bends
down, picks up a ROCK.
putting the last sample boxes into the back-pack, looks up
step onto the scaffolding, raising the rock to crush the
SMASH! Leonard tosses the rock at the insect, crushing it.
Peter rushes to the insect's corpse on the scaffolding.
Did you see the size of that thing?!
Look what you did! You stupid sonofa-
A CREAK from the scaffolding at their combined weight.
Leonard grabs Peter, tries to pull him from the scaffolding.
THE ENTIRE SCAFFOLDING GIVES WAY!
...taking Peter and Leonard with it...
CRASH! Both Peter and Leonard are thrown to the ground of
the station below. The scaffolding falls around them.
PETER AND LEONARD
stir in the wreckage. Peter rises shakily. He puts his
glasses on. One of the lenses is badly smashed.
It's okay. I'm all right.
He tries to help Leonard up; Leonard knocks his hand away.
Get the hell away from me!
Peter looks up at Josh.
He's all right, too.
Leonard brushes himself off, checks out his walkie-talkie.
It's been broken in the fall, a tangle of plastic and wires.
He curses under his breath.
Peter checks the wall for a handhold. But there's only
smooth tile and dust.
Oh, that's gonna work.
You got a better way up?
Leonard removes his badge, tosses it up to Josh.
Show that to the station manager. Tell
him Leonard's gonna have his bubble-butt
he don't have someone down here in ten.
H-how do I get...?
Way we came. Take the first tunnel to
Leonard's voice echoes off the cavernous walls. Josh
hurriedly writes it down in his notebook.
Go left. Go left again till you hit the
fork... Then right again. You got that?
I think so. One right, two lefts...
And a right.
Go Josh. Now.
We hear a persistent BEEPING...
A concrete ROOM filled with glimmering debris. Cans,
eyeglasses, fake teeth, chrome, foil, glass shards, broken
Susan lies unconscious, half-sunk in a mulch of decomposing
food, old newspapers, plastic garbage bags. An inch of brown
WATER burbles past her bloody head.
SOMETHING jostles her, rocking her back and forth.
Her eyelids slowly open.
A HUGE MIMIC IS PERCHED ON HER BODY!
Its WINGCASE is drooped around her like a shroud. The
creature furiously tears at her jacket, trying to get at
The beeper spills from her pocket along with several Pay Day
bars. The Mimic CRUSHES the machine instantly, then chomps
up all the candy bars with a single move of its mandibles.
Susan watches in terror as the creature steps away.
A SOUND from an adjacent tunnel. Susan looks...
...and sees ANOTHER MIMIC pulling the REMAINS OF A MAN into
Susan gropes around her in the soggy debris, looking for some
Her fingers close around a three-foot piece of RUSTY PIPE.
Something dark drips on her hand.
looks up. Above her, a badly decomposing HUMAN FOOT, or what
is left of it. All part of the excarnated corpse of the
Chinese Preacher. His gold cross shines boldly in the dark.
hears the sound. It immediately SKITTERS back to her.
jerks herself sideways...
AND STABS THE PIPE into the Mimic's thorax with a wet CRRK!
Susan heaves herself up, pushing the thing onto its back.
The Mimic BUZZES furiously, milky WHITE FOAM pumping from the
wound. Its legs slash the air as it tries to right itself.
Susan runs for the tunnels, debris falling from her clothing.
comes to a t-junction. He checks his notepad for the
He turns, heads left.
Susan staggers through a dark PASSAGEWAY. Water drizzles
into her grimy face. She looks up.
Rain leaks from an overhead grate three stories up. She can
see the SHOES of PEOPLE walking to and fro above.
EXT. STREET ABOVE - NIGHT
Life as usual on Delancey street.
Pedestrians crisscross the metal grate, hunched under their
umbrellas. Traffic noise, T.V. displays on street front
stores, boom boxes, car horns...
They drown out the tiny sound of Susan's voice...
hears distant FEET SCURRYING toward her, punctuated by a
metallic CLANG! CLANG! CLANG!
CLANG! The metal pipe, still imbedded in the Mimic, BANGS
the wall as the insect moves down the dripping narrow tunnel.
looks around frantically. She crosses to a METAL LID on the
floor, lifts it.
A HOLE is below, dropping off into darkness.
The Mimic's CLANGING grows louder.
Susan sits herself on the edge of the hole, grasping the
metal lid by handles on its underside.
The Mimic rushes into the chamber, speeding toward her...
Susan JUMPS into the hole, hanging onto the lid...
WHANG! The lid SLAMS SHUT over the hole a fraction of a
second before the creature reaches it.
The Mimic touches the lid with its antennae, confused.
The TICK-TICKING of the Mimic's antennae scanning the lid.
Susan hangs from the handles on the lid, her arms trembling.
Susan's strength gives out. She lets go, falls.
Susan CRASHES onto a juncture between two large PIPES.
She MOANS in pain.
CLOSER - SUSAN
secures her position, looks down. A seemingly bottomless pit
below, crisscrossed with a FOREST OF PIPES AND DUCTS.
The nearest pipe above her is well beyond reach.
She is trapped.
Then she hears the SOUND of the LID OPENING above. She holds
A faint YELLOW LIGHT of a lighter flickers down at her.
Josh cautiously enters a vaulted area. Old pipes have been
ripped from the walls. WATER gushes over the steel-plated
walls. He looks around- this doesn't seem familiar.
Josh freezes as he sees something behind a loose metal PLATE
on the wall.
He yanks at the plate- it gives a little bit. He yanks
harder- the plate falls down on one side, hanging
precariously from a loose bolt.
It reveals A HOLE PACKED WITH DOZENS AND DOZENS OF OOTHECAS.
He leans close to examine them- there is a NOISE in the
tunnel behind him-
JOSH'S POV - WATERFALL
A curtain of WATER falls over the side of a pipe onto the
floor. Behind it, something ENORMOUS crawls into view.
Multiple legs, antennae, an elongated body distorted by the
water and the light of a flare. It stops-
Holding his breath and tiptoeing sideways, never taking his
eyes off the thing, Josh begins to move away. He sees a
narrow OPENING in the wall- there seems to be dim LIGHT
coming from something beyond it. He tries to squeeze through
The creature is immobile behind the sheet of water, as if
mesmerized by its flow-
PIT - JOSH
With tremendous effort, Josh passes through the opening.
He finds himself inside a bowl-shaped mud hole. Scattered
around him he sees FUNNY BUNNY PATCHES that were sewn in the
sweatshop. He trips on a half-buried SEWING MACHINE. He
Above him is a grate. He's come to the SHOWER ROOM of the
INT. SWEATSHOP SHOWER ROOM
Empty now, except for the rusting sewing machines in a
corner. We TILT to see Josh moving the grate away. He
jumps- no way he can grab onto the slippery tile-
HIS HANDS SLIDE!!
Josh puts the old sewing machine upright.
Suddenly, the bolt hinging the plate gives way and... the
steel plate hits the ground: KLANGG!!
leaps into action!
PIT - JOSH
hears the CLICKING, fairly close. He shines his light back
down the hole he entered through-
JOSH'S POV - THE MIMIC
moves past the waterfall and takes the wall at full speed.
Oh shit, oh shit, oh shit!
He stands on top of the sewing machine, wobbling, reaches for
the floor above-
SWEATSHOP SHOWER ROOM
Josh's head and one shoulder are in through the hole. His
arms tremble. He makes a desperate lunge and manages to grab
the POWER CORD of one of the abandoned sewing machines.
rushes through the opening without even slowing down.
pulls himself up, up- WHAM! The Mimic hits the lower part
of his body, BLOOD spraying up through the hole. He SCREAMS,
grasps the cord with both hands!
He is brutally YANKED down into the hole, the sewing machine
tipping, then dragged across the tiled floor till it wedges
violently in the hole!
We track over to reveal, one of Chuy's perfectly
executed WIRE SCULPTURES. Sitting atop another sewing
INT. REMAINS OF THE SUBWAY STATION
A ring of FLARES burns in the darkness like an island. Peter
lights another one, revealing a space buried in layers of
dust and time.
Cracked MANNEQUIN FACES stares out from an unopened TAILOR
SHOP. A FLOWER PARLOR decorated with cobwebs. A yellowed
NEWSPAPER on the floor, its headlines reading: GERMAN TROOPS
DRIVEN BACK ACROSS RHINE.
Peter looks up to see Leonard approaching from the track.
Well...there's an old service elevator
half a mile down the tracks. Ain't gonna
be much use, though. Lines are dead.
Peter shines his flare up at a thick cord of cables which HUM
ominously with electricity.
You said those cables're still live.
Can't we rewire...?
Oh, man, there you go again.
Those things bring juice to the new
stations. You just can't rewire that
Peter approaches him.
For Chrissakes, what's the problem?
You need a memo every time you fart?
All right, motherfucker, that's it.
He pushes Peter violently. Their eyes lock and meet.
Inches away from a fistfight.
A SOUND rushing towards them, its echoes increasing by the
Where is it coming from?
Peter looks at Leonard. Leonard unbuttons his holster clip,
places his hand on his .22
A SHADOW appears outside the archway.
It steps onto the platform.
The old man stumbles out of the darkness, out of breath. A
rusted crowbar in his hand.
Leonard walks over to him solicitously.
My God, what the hell are you...?
Hurry, the woman needs help!
A shadow crosses Peter's face.
INT. PIPE GALLERY
OUTSTRETCHED HANDS in the darkness.
REVEAL Peter leaning across the void with one hand while
Manny and Leonard grip his other.
Susan below, balancing precariously on the crisscrossing
pipes. A mess, but still alive. She reaches up to Peter.
It's too far.
Listen to me: we're getting you out.
Leonard and Manny pull Peter back into
Peter undoes his belt.
(To Manny and Leonard)
Give me your belts.
They obey. Peter buckles them together with his. He then
loops one end around a bannister, the other around his wrist.
(to Manny, as he ties them
What are you doing down here?
Chuy. He was taken. He's down here
Oh, please, hurry. I saw what was
Peter takes his word for it. He uses the belts to lower
himself to the nearest pipe.
Leonard LIGHTS a flare to illuminate the pipe gallery.
Peter works his way down. The web of pipes seem to recede
The lifeline tightens.
Peter gets to the last solid footing, lies down on his
stomach and lets the belts down.
I'm coming, Sus, I'm coming.
But then, he sees something move below her. Then a hollow
CLANG! CLANG! CLANG!
No, Jesus, no.
Toss the flare down!
I only got...
Just do it!
Leonard lets the flare drop from his hand.
It falls past them, ricocheting off the maze of pipes,
spinning down to the pitch-black below.
And for a split second the flame illuminates...
pipe in its thorax, nimbly CLIMBING THE PIPES TOWARD SUSAN
CLANG! CLANG! CLANG!
eyes grow huge.
just plain loses it.
What the fuck is that?! What the fuck is
knows all too well what's coming for her.
(A desperate appeal)
Throwing caution to the wind, Peter reaches the belt down.
Wrap it around your hand!
Susan at last gets a grip. Peter pulls with both arms.
CLANG! CLANG! CLANG! Getting closer.
Susan struggles for footholds on the slippery pipes,
ascending foot by foot...
Peter pulls her into his arms.
CLANG! CLANG! CLANG!
Peter bends down.
Get on my shoulders!
Susan steps onto his shoulders. He pushes her up...
And Leonard and Manny yank her out.
CLANG! CLANG! CLANG!
Peter scrambles up, SLAMS the lid back on the hole.
The four of them run.
HOLD ON the lid.
WHAM! It bursts from the floor, rolls away like a coin.
INT. ABANDONED PLATFORM
The four humans run down the empty platform. Peter spares a
Far down the tunnel,
THE MIMIC HAS SPREAD ITS WINGS AND IS FLYING AFTER THEM!!
He points to the open DOOR of an ancient SUBWAY CAR.
They sprint for the car, get to the door. Manny, Peter,
Leonard, then Susan...
INT. SUBWAY REPAIR CAR
...tumble inside a repair car crammed with shelves and empty
Get the goddam door!
Leonard and Peter both grab its handle, slide it shut...
SPLACK! The Mimic crashes into it!
KLANGGG! The door bulges out from the impact, almost
tearing itself off the hinges.
Susan jumps back. Manny runs to cover her.
The creature is caught, half in, half out, antennae and
forelegs waving wildly!
The abdomen CRASHES through a pane of glass.
Push it! Push it! Don't let up!
Leonard and Peter push harder, barely keeping it pinned.
THE UPPER HALF OF THE MIMIC TEARS ITSELF LOOSE.
WHITE BLOOD SPATTERS everywhere. The Mimic is NOW CUT IN
The wings flap wildly, the abdomen shatters the safety
window's outer panels.
But the FRONT SECTION IS STILL ALIVE. It scrabbles in,
spraying white blood...
...drags itself up on the ceiling, then down onto the floor
and under a row of shelves in a half-circle around the car
till it finally comes to a halt.
Silence. The only sound is a SKITTERING outside.
Susan looks outside the window.
The Mimic's REAR HALF IS STILL TRYING TO PUSH THROUGH THE
DOOR, its feet blindly dragging along.
What the fuck was that?
Peter says nothing. Leonard grabs him by the shirt.
You better tell me what the hell's
going on here!
Hey, hey!! Take it easy!!
We don't know!! We don't know what it
Leonard releases Peter and, cocking his gun moves closer
to the still thing.
Wait a minute-
Fuck you, wait a minute. I'm
SNAP! The Mimic POUNCES on him, catching his leg in its
A sickening CRUNCH as the Mimic's mouth begins to work the
leg like a grinder-blender.
GET IT! GET IT OFF ME!
Peter and Manny try to pull the thing off as Leonard falls
and writhes on the floor.
BAM! BAM! BAM! The men flinch away as Leonard empties his
guns on it, until the thing's shell finally CRACKS!
But the thing is still locked onto Leonard's leg. Peter
tries to work it free from the creature's jaws. No good.
Its muscles are locked.
Manny removes a can of shoe polish from his coat, then starts
smearing the stuff onto the Mimic's head and jaws.
Oh, Jesus! It's hitting the bone man, get
He lights a CIGARETTE LIGHTER, goes to touch the flame to the
Hey hey hey...
Is how we make loose the ticks back home.
Peter hesitates, but lets him go. Manny lights the polish.
WHOOSH...the Mimic's head is engulfed in a halo of flame. THE
LEGS LOOSEN THEIR GRIP.
Peter and Manny yank it free from Leonard, who's PASSED OUT
from the pain. His leg is torn and bloody.
INT. SUBWAY REPAIR CAR - LATER
We now see the car is 50's vintage. A POSTER of Mickey
Mantle above an empty worktable.
Peter sits before Susan. She's trembling, understandably
shaken from her previous experience. BLOOD pours from a CUT
on her forehead.
Peter takes a bit of torn cloth, puts it to the wound, then
tenderly raises her hand to keep the bandage in place.
Just keep holding it. Can you do that
Susan nods silently. Her hand weakly presses the compress.
He turns to Manny, who sits solicitously next to Leonard.
His wound is wrapped with makeshift bandages. He begins to
Peter gets up, but Susan's hand is closed tightly around his,
like the jaws of the Mimic. He kisses her gently, then
slowly manages to release his hand.
He walks to Leonard, inspects his wound. Touches the sole of
You feel anything?
Yeah, I feel like ripping your
fucking eyes out...
Leonard, listen. I need to see if
there's any nerve damage before we
carry you back.
Look, I'm trying to help you here...
Oh, you helped me here, all right, white
boy. You and your goddam memo. You
needed to prove your point, uh?
I'm sorry. But I don't think letting you
bleed to death is the best apology.
Peter touches his foot again. Leonard finally nods.
Manny gazes at the Mimic carcass at the end of the car.
Where the hell'd that thing come from?
Peter looks at Susan. She remains silent.
"Mistake"? What's that supposed to...?
It doesn't matter, all right? It's dead.
How you know that? Shit, it was runnin'
around with its buttside gone and a
fucking pipe through its heart...
It doesn't have a heart.
Peter looks up at her.
Just inner chambers...
But it look like a man. It... I saw it.
She gets up, finally moving.
That's what it wanted you to see.
The subway car sits at the end of the platform, windows dimly
glowing in the dark. The door opens, and Manny and Peter
snatch the lower half and wing pieces back into the car.
INSIDE CAR - A LITTLE LATER
The lower half of the insect has been moved into the car.
Susan is reassembling it.
So, you're saying this is like those bugs
that -- that look like twigs or leaves
(shakes her head)
Susan displays the partly-charred head.
This is mimicry. They evolve to mimic
their predators. A butterfly can look
like the eyes of an owl. A catterpillar
can copy a snake...
Susan closes the multiple mouth parts into a self-contained
bud shape, then pushes back the "face" mandibles.
This has evolved to mimic the most
dangerous predator it's ever had...
She holds it in her hand, like Yorick's skull. The mimic's
head obscenely mirrors her own. She inserts it into the
She stands back.
CAMERA cranes up and reveals that the thing now looks like
THE OVERCOAT MAN.
Mantids can mimic. We gave the Judas
"...and behold he will come that walks as
a man, yet is not a man- ..."
This, is our baby Peter. Yours and
mine. Aren't you proud?
OUTSIDE OF THE CAR - IN THE TUNNELS
We see four shadows move fast, scuttling on the walls and
...heading towards the car...
INSIDE THE CAR
A SUBWAY MAP on the wall. Red, blue, and orange lines
branching through the boroughs like veins.
All these...they're like tunnels of an
insect colony. Once these things hit a
certain population density, they'll have
to move out, form new colonies.
The realization hits the others.
We have to get help down here. Burn
the tunnels before...
She's interrupted by a CLICKING from the tunnel ahead.
It's answered by CLICKING from the tunnel behind.
Get the doors!
A brief glimpse down the car shows too many OTHER DOORS to
close in time.
Is there a switch?
Third rail is dead.
(To Manny and Susan.)
Get me up. There must be a manual
override in the booth.
Manny and Susan help Leonard up.
(Whispering to Peter)
Peter turns off the flashlights.
Susan and Manny help Leonard to the car's CONTROL BOOTH.
where the silhouette of a MIMIC moves to the rear of the car.
Leonard opens a box on the side-wall marked MANUAL OVERRIDE.
Inside, there is a large, HEXAGONAL SHAPED HOLE.
(Starts looking around)
Where's the damn crank?!
The Mimic is only yards away.
OTHER SHADOWS emerge from the distant dark.
Manny leaves Leonard and Susan to look for the lever crank.
He runs to help Peter try and shut the doors manually.
But it's useless. Many of the doors won't budge.
(hissing a whisper)
The shadows get nearer, their CLICKING louder...
Susan looks under the dashboard, finds a HEXAGONAL SHAPED
ROD. The lever crank.
I got it!
Susan gives it to Leonard. He JAMS the rod into the hexagonal
shaped hole. Perfect fit.
Leonard begins CRANKING the thing. But it's rusty and
THROUGHOUT SUBWAY CAR
The doors begin to swing shut very slowly.
OUTSIDE - A MIMIC'S POV
sees the moving doors, starts heading for them.
Leonard can't crank fast enough. Susan joins in, putting her
hands over Leonard's. Both spin the thing as fast as
Peter and Manny each pulling on a door, trying to speed up
the closing process.
SHADOWS are seen approaching, now very close.
Leonard and Susan put all their effort into turning the crank
one more time...
Come on, you son-of-a...
A SOFT CLICK as the doors SHUT IN UNISON.
All four are stock still, like a submarine crew awaiting the
blast of depth charges. Their eyes dart to the
caked with soot, irradiated by the distant glow of one of the
THUCK! Something BUMPS against the door.
A machine-gun patter of FOOTSTEPS on the roof.
The car SHAKES.
The dark platform is alive with phantom shapes.
SCREEECH!! Something sharp is drawn along the car roof like a
nail over a chalkboard.
THUMP! THUMP! Impacts on the sides...
An obscene symphony of sounds as Mimics lay siege to the car.
A BUZZ OF WINGS catches his attention. He turns. His face
is reflected in a security window.
CRACK! The window SPLINTERS, destroying Peter's reflection.
Claws SCRATCH the ceiling. It begins to dent.
BELOW SUSAN AND LEONARD
Large forms CLICKING underneath, looking for a way in.
Susan stares at the floor, her eyes following the course of
...which leads to Leonard's wounded, bloodstained leg.
(Looks at Leonard.)
KLANGGG! A Mimic leg PIERCES the ceiling above them!
Susan pulls Leonard out of the way just in time as
IN THE SUBWAY CAR
KLANG! KLANG! More legs break through the ceiling!
SUSAN AND LEONARD
emerge from the control booth, Leonard's arm over Susan's
His blood! It's driving them crazy! We
have to mask the odor!
But there's not time enough to discuss possible solutions.
Leonard pulls off his jacket. Susan begins wrapping it around
his wound to mask it. Manny helps.
Peter has upended one shelf, jamming it against a broken
window as a barricade.
Despite their efforts, the Mimics are not thrown off the
It's no use! They know we're in here!
They don't know anything Peter, they
just sense. They're hardwired!
Right. Hardwired to eat anything that's
not like them!
The whole car is now shaking and buckling.
She looks over at the severed Mimic corpse nearby. A
Give me your razor.
Manny looks at her blankly. Susan just takes the blade.
The whole car is now shaking and buckling.
She runs to the Mimic's carcass. For a moment, she
hesitates. But the pandemonium leaves her little choice.
She SLICES into the Mimic's corpse with the razor...
What are you doing?
...sticks her arm in all the way to the elbow...
...and pulls out two fat AMBER SACS the size of
softballs. She SLICES them open.
Orange GOO leaks out, its stench overpowering.
(covers his nose)
Peter looks up as Susan slides one of the sacs over to
Rub it on the windows!
Just do it!!
Holding his breath, against the stench, he smears the
crap on the windows, the doorframe...
looks to the roof, listening.
And remarkably, the SOUNDS of the Mimics START
Susan comes over to Leonard, begins dabbing the goop on
Leonard's wound. Leonard makes a face at the stink.
What are you putting that crap on me
Scent glands. Insects use 'em to
identify themselves to each other.
She smears the floor area behind Leonard. The activity winds
down gradually, and finally comes almost to a halt.
SUBWAY CAR - LATER
Leaning against the dirtied window, Manny creates a streak
for every Mimic he sees.
Peter, Leonard and Susan are hard at work. Leonard has
created a small "model" of the station using pocket debris
and the wall map.
Okay. That's us.
Manny's lighter represents the subway car.
This track we're on? Goes down into
the repair area.
(Makes an "X" further down)
The elevator's over here. Leads up to
the active tunnels.
THUMP! An oily, soft abdomen brushes lazily up against
the glass. Manny moves away.
Can we get this car there?
Someone'd have to go to the
switchroom, pull the coupling lever,
that'll send us left and to the
But the power...
Hell, I might be able to juice the whole
area, if I can get to the power box. It's
just a couple of cables...
Oh, how you gonna get there, Leonard?
Just talk me through it. I can go with
It would take a minute or so.
You won't last that long out there.
Peter, you couldn't even fix our TV!
Tense silence. He points at the glands on the floor.
We'll cover ourselves with this. They
can mimic us- we Goddam mimic them!
It worked before...
(an edge in her voice)
The scent won't last...
That's why we should do it now.
Susan knows they have no other choice.
Susan is stuffing Leonard's old bloody bandages into the
thorax of the dead Mimic. She ties a flare to its center.
It's just a regular old pump switch,
okay? Right by the track signal
Manny is spreading the mucus-like liquid of the gland-sac on
himself and Peter as Leonard instructs them-
The lights come up, you pull the
You don't do that, we're on the wrong
(turns to Peter)
The two men look into each other's eyes.
You gonna finally get to fuck around
with the wires. Think you can
Depends. You got a memo?
Leonard's hard feelings give way to an almost
Using a ballpoint pen, he draws a schematic on the back
of Peter's hand.
All right then. You gonna find two
wires. One's green. The other's
approaches Manny, who looks distractedly out the window.
He's out there. I heard him. How can
he be? This things...
I didn't protect him, lady. He
trusted me. And I didn't protect
him... His father...I lost his father
to the streets and now, Chuy...
We'll find him. We'll be back and
Manny doesn't respond.
READY TO GO
Susan dabs at Peter's face with the last touches of the
scent gland substance. She doesn't meet his eyes as she
You're going to have to keep it
really slow. Their eyes react to
Peter barely nods, his nerves clearly on edge. He
instinctively goes to wipe his forehead. Susan stops
Don't touch it. And for Godsakes,
try not to sweat. They can sense
Try not to sweat?
Leonard turns to Susan and Peter.
Leonard's voice comes through like a clarion.
...are we ready for this?
Susan has her hand on Peter's chest; Peter is taking deep
breaths, trying to cool down his body to prevent sweat. It's
an odd parody of Lamaze exercise.
Whatever you do, don't step on the
third rail coming back. Six hundred
volts'll blow your leg right off.
A final breath. He's about as calm as he's going to get.
He looks at Susan a long moment. He takes her hand.
I was just thinking how I could use a
pair of pliers... and I remembered where
That's it. That's it. Breathe easy.
A sad, nervous smile appears on Peter's face.
In the tool box under the kitchen
Susan kisses him softly on the lips.
Manny approaches. Show time.
Susan steps away from Peter. She looks toward the control
begins turning the lever crank slowly.
gradually begin to open, and stop half way.
The darkness outside is alive with CLICKING.
PETER AND MANNY
slowly move between the opening of the door and make their
They step onto the dusty concrete. Come to a stop.
watches nervously for the reaction of the Mimics
LARGE SHADOWS pass far and near of Peter and Manny; but none
of the Mimics seem to care about them one way or the other.
Peter and Manny exchange looks: a moment of relief. It's
Peter slowly moves right along the track to the nearby POWER
Manny goes left, starts to make a longer journey across the
platform to the SWITCH ROOM.
Susan moves away from the door, goes over the Mimic carcass,
filled with the bloody bandages.
PLATFORM - BY THE TRACKS
Peter makes his way to the edge of the platform, whispering
He lowers himself slowly to the track.
PLATFORM - NEAR THE SWITCHROOM
Manny moves toward the door. A large WINDOW OF DUSTY GLASS
reflects his image...and the distant ones of the Mimics.
BY THE TRACKS
Peter gets to the track. He turns
And is met FACE TO FACE WITH A MIMIC!
Its antennae move toward his head, curious.
Its human-mask face plate clicks apart and together.
Peter remains stock still. He starts breathing deeply...
Leonard has now fully opened the doors.
pulls the tipcase of the FLARE tied to the dead Mimic's
midsection. FSST! The flare SPARKS alive.
The sudden light draws the attention of several Mimics
Susan pushes the carcass toward an open door at the front of
...and with a HEAVE, throws it onto the front track.
The other Mimics take instant notice.
The Mimic before him suddenly turns. In a flash of speed,
it's gone, heading toward
THE DEAD MIMIC
stuffed with the bloody rage, the thing sends its fellow
into a feeding frenzy.
The other Mimics begin TEARING into it, ripping their brother
to shreds in cannibalistic orgy.
Susan watches in disgust.
Choke on it, motherfuckers.
Leonard turns the lever crank again. The doors begin to
breathes a sigh of relief.
He goes to the powerbox, opens it up.
He shines his flashlight down on the back of his hand.
The simple chart tells him what to wire: BLUE WIRES TO
THE GREEN WIRES.
He looks back up at the powerbox. His face falls.
All the wires are a GROSS BROWN, their colored plastic
casings having long ago faded into goo.
Manny enters. The space is even more dusty than the rest of
the station. Spiderwebs strung over old machinery. White
Doric PILLARS support the ceiling like skeletal bones. 1940s
style LAMPS are built into their side.
Manny looks around. Off to the right, right next to the
rusted track switch board, he heads for the COUPLING SWITCH.
Once there, he rests and, through the murky windows, he
waves back to LEONARD.
He pulls out his pills box and takes a pill. But his hands
are shaking, under enormous tension. Some of the pills
scatter on the floor. He puts the box away and leans
against the wall.
A CLICKING nearby catches his attention, echoing from the
entrance of ANOTHER ROOM.
It is not the sound of the Mimics; but rather, of METAL.
Manny follows the sound.
BY THE TRACK
Peter desperately tries to connect the wires the right way.
He wipes off the brown gunk, tries to discern any semblance
He feels himself start to sweat. He tries to relax.
INT. ROOM BEHIND SWITCHROOM
The space is larger than the switchroom. The walls and
ceiling have an odd, shiny consistency.
Manny heads in further, locates the levers and waits.
Something pale and small emerges from the dark, a few feet
away, a face that seems to float in the eerie half-light.
A RUSTLING behind him. Manny turns around.
He swings the light onto Chuy, sitting on the floor before
the remains of a RUSTY COLUMN. That beautiful, emotionless
smile on his pale face.
BY THE POWERBOX
Peter has made all the necessary connections. He turns now
to the fuse-section.
A red throw-switch is there, and two big slots for fuses.
One is still occupied.
The other one empty.
CU - PETER'S FOREHEAD
BEADS OF SWEAT begin to form.
Susan watches the Mimics at their feast.
All of a sudden, they begin to stop, as if losing interest.
The scent's fading...
Susan steps back, looks around desperately for a flashlight.
(tense as hell)
What's Manny doing? I can't see him
ROOM BEHIND SWITCHROOM
Manny slaps his knees with both hands in a parental gesture
of "come to me".
In the darkness, something that looks like a PALM FROND
floats gracefully down from the ceiling, making see-saw
gestures as it falls through the air.
Manny shines his flashlight on the floor. It's not a palm
It's a wing.
Manny turns his flashlight to the ceiling and walls.
The place IS COVERED WITH MIMICS. They are in the middle of
a vicious mating ritual. The males tear savagely at the
females wings as they proceed to mount them. A chaotic
Manny is sickened.
CHUY GIGGLES. Manny shines his light ahead. Manny's face
The WHITE PILLAR BEHIND CHUY IS MOVING...
...at last revealing...
AN ALBINO MIMIC! Another leap for evolution...
Its form is different from the other Mimics. Sleeker, more
supple, almost beautiful. And while its movements are still
not completely human, there is a kind of unearthly grace to
them that at the very least entrance us.
The thing raises itself to full height, dwarfing the tiny
boy. It stands over him like a king over his court fool.
Chuy giggles happily. It's all a game to him.
The Albino CLICKS in response -- a long, leisurely sound, as
if trying to communicate with the boy.
Chuy pulls his spoons out and begins to play them, making a
perfect imitation of the sound.
Manny starts to tremble as the creature gazes upon him with
huge, expressionless 'eyes'. He turns to Chuy-
NO, NO, CHUY, NO...
The Albino CLICKS his jaws, moving in toward Manny.
plays his SPOONS in perfect imitation.
stands under an archway in a swirl of dust. He raises his
arms, like a prophet. He lets go of hsi razor and kneels.
God has closed his eyes. This, he cannot
His vacant eyes, fill with tears, he prays quietly, a strange
serenity invades him.
The Albino's jaws open and charge.
Some Mimics advance toward Peter's direction.
Susan desperately waves a flashlight and bangs the window,
trying to attract their attention.
Over here! Over here! Goddam you!!
BY THE TRACKS
Peter BREAKS the arm off one of his glasses. He jams it at
the empty fuse. It SPARKS.
THUMP! The electricity COMES ON...
The lamps on the columns BURST INTO FLAMES from the power
surge. Fire illuminates the station like a Greek temple.
BY THE TRACKS
Peter climbs up onto the tracks...
...sweat staining his forehead...
Peter wipes it and removes the scent coating.
clearly react, sensing the chemical change, like bees
reacting to honey.
THE DOOR! OPEN THE FUCKING DOOR!
looks at the now lit control panels, tries to decide which
button to press. He begins to press each one in turn.
hears the sound of spoons playing.
He turns to see Chuy, standing by the outside of the switch
room. The boy smiles. A flashlight shines behind him.
But the thing holding the flashlight is anything but human:
The ALBINO steps into view, moving eerily like an unstrung
puppet. His claws and jaws are coated in blood. Chuy joyfully
announces the arrival like a little drummer boy.
climb over the roof, moving toward the rear of the-
SUBWAY CAR - CONTROL BOOTH
Susan runs in. SLAMS her hand down on a button.
THE SUBWAY CAR
The doors open.
Peter hesitates, takes a step toward Chuy.
Come on, kid...
Chuy seeks shelter behind the Albino's legs.
The albino charges toward him.
Peter bolts for the car.
jump and land
just as Peter squeezes through one of the doors.
BAM! THUD! The doors dent. Glass cracks.
(Yelling to Leonard)
Susan presses the button. The doors close again.
The kid's with them!!
What do you-?
Go!! Just go!!
Leonard throws the dead man's switch by the control board.
JOLTS into action.
The train LURCHES forward.
Wheels spark and kick into gear. The mimics scramble and re-
assemble quickly, ready to attack.
changes position and charges towards the car.
THE MOVING CAR
reaches a "Y" section. The car moves to the track to the
INSIDE SUBWAY CAR
Leonard's eyes go wide as he sees
He didn't do it!
Manny never threw the coupling switch!!
We're goin' the wrong way!!!
It keeps bearing right. Further away from their destination.
...towards an old STORAGE YARD in their path. Idle cars and
repair equipment on the tracks.
A crash seems inevitable.
INSIDE THE CAR
but they don't work at all.
From below the car we see the wheels spinning freely,
heading for collision.
INSIDE THE CAR
Susan grabs Leonard from the control booth. To Peter
They rush back against the opposite door.
STORAGE YARD - SUBWAY CAR
CRAAASHH!! The car BASHES into a parked section of train in
a GRIN of tearing metal...
...flips off the track...
...and onto its side...
The car skids to a stop. SPARKS fill the air.
INSIDE SUBWAY CAR
All three are hurt. Leonard's leg wound has reopened. Peter
has badly damaged his right arm.
You all right?
Peter nods painfully. Susan to Leonard.
(Simply, re: his leg)
Can't feel it.
Peter and Susan sling Leonard's arms over their shoulders.
They raise him up.
OUTSIDE SUBWAY CAR
They move unsteadily outside.
Across both tracks!!
They head off over a concrete island in the direction of the
The Mimics and the Albino moving closer.
PETER AND SUSAN
try to hurry, but it's no use given Leonard's condition.
Peter and Susan both disregard the order.
We're no leaving you!
No way we can outrun 'em together.
Leonard suddenly grabs his POLICE BATON from his belt
clip. He pushes the two away.
NOW!! GO!! Get the hell off my beat!
Leonard turns away from them.
Peter goes to get Leonard, but Susan stops him. This MTA
officer is staying put.
Come on. Come to poppa.
Reluctantly, the two begin down the tunnel.
takes a stand by the third rail, baton in hand.
INT. SUBWAY TUNNEL - FURTHER DOWN
Peter and Susan run.
An open CAGE ELEVATOR on a platform nearby. A sign overhead:
AUTHORIZED PERSONNEL ONLY.
They rush toward it.
INT. SUBWAY TUNNELS - "Y" SECTION
Leonard stands like a guardian to the tunnel mouth.
SOUNDS of the Mimics approaching. He glances at the third
rail beside him, then down the track.
Come here, you mealy-mouthed...
The sound gets louder.
Leonard raises his baton in top MTA form.
THUD! Several Mimcs slam onto Leonard!
Leonard goes down, HITTING them futilely with his baton.
They begin to tear at his limbs.
...kicks his good leg out...
...and CONNECTS WITH THE THIRD RAIL.
AN ARC of ELECTRICITY lights up the darkness, consuming
Leonard and the Mimics.
INT. BY THE CAGE ELEVATOR
The crackling sound echoes through to Peter and Susan.
Susan hits the elevator button again.
I can't tell if it's working!
Peter has unbarred the gate.
looks up, into the shaft.
coming down, but it's taking its own sweet time.
Oh, come on, come on!
Peter pulls her into the shaft, closes the security gate
A skeletal framework on each side. Just enough for a
Peter steadies Susan as she climbs in beside him. She
balances on the narrow ledge.
Peter SLAMS the cage door shut, latching it.
You go first. I'll be right below you.
Your arm, you can't...
I can. We can do this...
He shows her the first hand and foothold. Susan grabs on.
INT. SUBWAY TUNNEL
The Albino amkes its way forward, flanked by two Mimics.
Turns toward the elevator.
Susan hauls herself up the framework, handhold by
handhold. Peter is right below her.
She can see his arms are starting to tremble dangerously
with the effort.
We're gonna make it!
Peter grinds his teeth, trying to make the next
WHAM! Something hits the gate below them!
INT. BY THE ELEVATOR GATE
The Mimics are tearing at the metal gate.
The Albino remains still, watching them work.
PETER AND SUSAN
Susan's arm and legs are shaking now. Her breath starts
catching in her throat with the effort.
Don't hold your breath! Keep it going,
Susan tried, but can't. She tries to pull herself up to the
Talk to me.
Susan pulls herself up.
I'm really glad I'm not pregnant.
We look down past them as they climb. Two of the Mimics and
the Albino have gotten into the shaft!
The Albino is so long it climbs by bracing its legs against
SUSAN AND PETER
Susan is crying, barely any strength left.
Peter does his best to stay in control, but in truth is
barely hanging on himself.
LIGHT hits them from the shaft above now, SOUNDS of PEOPLE
TALKING and a muffled P.A. ANNOUNCEMENT filter down.
rushing upward on the shaft wall, higher, higher.
INT. ELEVATOR SHAFT
Peter's hands grab onto the grating of the gate on the next
KCHUNK! is heard above them. Peter looks up.
Now the elevator is coming down.
Hang onto me.
Peter pulls Susan up till she can grab it too, both of them
able to get a foothold on the ledge-
Hang on tight!
He begins to KICK on the gate, trying to tear it free. Susan
looks back down.
SUSAN'S POV - SHAFT
The Mimics rush up, closer, closer. The Albino opens its
SUSAN AND PETER
both KICK at the gate, it gives, Peter pulls Susan through
INT. SUBWAY TRACK
Peter and Susan stumble away.
INT. ELEVATOR SHAFT
The Albino sees the elevator approaching from above.
It gives a few CLICKS to its minions.
The two other Mimics race up the shaft...
...toward the elevator...
...and WEDGE THEMSELVES IN ON EITHER SIDE!
They are CRUSHED instantly. But the elevator is stopped just
above the open gate.
With just enough room for the Albino to get through to
INT. SUBWAY TRACKS
Susan and Peter run. There is LIGHT just up the tunnel. We
Don't look back!
They go for it. At last, they make it to
INT. A PLATFORM
Susan and Peter stumble forward. Light streams down from
overheads. Susan turns.
The Albino spills out onto the track behind them.
Sleek, streamlined, light glancing beautifully off it.
SUSAN AND PETER
HEADLIGHTS hit them as we hear the ROAR of a SUBWAY TRAIN
heading at them from the other side of the platform!
We can do it!
runs, faster than any other Mimic.
The express train BLOWS its HORN, RUSHING FORWARD.
PLATFORM - COMMUTERS
Weary late-night COMMUTERS stand half-asleep on the tracks.
A sleepy-eyed little girl points, tugging on her mother's
Mommy, there's people...
PETER AND SUSAN
The driver sees the battered couple...
He reaches for the brake...
SUSAN AND PETER
They reach the edge of the platform, the HORN deafening as
the train speeds toward them. Peter pushes Susan up, leaps-
INT. TRAIN - CONDUCTOR
We RUSH toward his horrified face.
The train, still flying, PLOWS INTO IT...
...flattening, grinding, pulverizing...
...until the windshield of the subway car is covered in white
The motoran leans on the brake, his eyes screwed shut in
primal horror. The train SQUEALS to a stop...
ON THE PLATFORM
Susan and Peter collapse on the cement floor in each others
arms. Heaving and weeping.
INT. GRAND CENTRAL STATION - NIGHT
COMMUTERS turn to stare as Peter and Susan move across
the floor. Both bruised and bloodied, leaning against
each other, heading for the exit.
Some DERELICTS observe them with curiosity.
A trio of MTA cops start towards them.
It'll be fine... it... They're still
down there. We'll seal the whole
system, go in with whatever it
But Peter's voice evidences a lack of conviction now,
he's trying to convince both Susan and himself of
something he doesn't fully believe.
It'll be fine... We nailed them
before, we'll do it again...
He hurries to meet the MTA cops. Susan looks up.
Commuters move to and fro, moving up and down and in and
out of the illuminated areas of the station.
In the crush of onlookers is one deadpan face- a MIMIC,
hugging the shadows, waiting for its moment!
We PAN 180 degrees to the other side of the platform-
there, briefly glimpsed is ANOTHER, and ANOTHER.
We TILT down to the throng below.
They've come up...
The electrified VOICE of the train ANNOUNCER suddenly
FADES UP, telling of departures and delays-
We raise above Susan's head-
The 11:16 local to Poughkeepsie,
boarding now, Track 32- the 7:20
Connecticut local, making
connections to South Norwalk-
-culminating in an OVERHEAD VIEW of the main terminal.
The movement continues. But from here, the people are
dots, their importanec no greater than that of a colony
LOS ANGELES, JUNE-19-96