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On July 6th, 1993, Writer Eric Luke turned in an outline for the pilot. It still had the Pack, and introduced the concept of the Gargoyle Eggs. Here were our notes on that outline, as we sent him to script.
To: Eric Luke Date: 7-15-93
From: Greg Weisman Ext.: (818)-754-7436
Subject: Notes on 7/6 Gargoyle Outline
Ta Da!! Let's go to script....with notes...sorry. Actually, we're real happy with the outline, we just want to send you forward with a few things in mind.
One general note comes from Gary, who's pretty much decided that the Gargoyles cannot fly like birds, but rather can glide like flying squirrels. We're going to take a lot of liberties with this. Play a lot with updrafts and downdrafts, i.e. cheat a lot, but the big basic no-no is the idea that they can start at ground level and just muscle themselves into the air with their wings. Gary doesn't want to just make this a rule, he wants to make use of it in the script as a vulnerability for the gargoyles. For example, if Goliath and Elisa are surrounded by the Pack, he can't just pick her up and fly away. He's trapped, unless he can get some height to get some air. Another thought comes earlier when Goliath saves Elisa's life at their first meeting. Maybe he grabs her in mid-air and then arcs up to re-land on the castle ramparts. And maybe he can't quite make it to the top and has to grab hold of the building and use his talons to claw his way back up to the landing, with her holding on to him for dear life. (These are just examples that occur to me...use, embellish, come up with your own as it fits the script.) Anyway, you get the idea.
I think we can heighten the drama of the opening by referring to the original beat outline depicting Robby and his Mom desperately running up the hill to the castle w/the Marauders close behind. It's sunset. Cole and crew don't have long to wait for it to get too dark for the archers to target them.
Re: the Wizard. The scariest thing about Goliath's looks is his tremendous threatening bulk, claws and teeth. His non-human appearance, wings and skin color play into the wizard's fears as well. But it's the potential physical threat that's the most frightening. I'm not sure that this will specifically come out in dialogue, but...
Teen 'goyles should probably be doing minor mischief until Robby's mother refers to them as monsters. This pisses them off (particularly Brooklyn) and they decide that if they're gonna be treated like Monsters they might as well act like monsters, and perhaps they do something that is flat-out malicious. Goliath comes in while they're "acting like monsters", doesn't know why and banishes them from the courtyard. They feel bigtime jipped.
Eggs in the rookery really intrigues us. It raises HUGE questions. Do Gargoyles lay eggs? What do they look like? Gary pictures rough spheres like cannonballs made of stone. Do the eggs survive Cole? I guess they must since Bronx and the trio do. Do they survive the centuries? What's the gestation period of a gargoyle egg? Did Demona gather up the eggs? Were they effected by the wizard's spell? When Xavier moves the castle to Manhattan, is the Rookery, eggs and all, left in tact in Scotland? None of these questions need to be answered in the pilot. It's just a great seed to plant for future episodes, so don't make too big a deal of it here; we want careful viewers to be curious, but most to be unconcerned, since they won't get the answers to these questions in this movie.
Was Broadway raised in the Rookery? Or has it been out of use for decades? If he was, we need to be careful that our trio aren't telling each other things that they all already know.
Again, in the final battle against the Captain, Cole and his marauders, refer to the original beat outline for choreography. We need Cole and the Captain to drag the queen away from the battlefield, luring Goliath away too, alone. We need the Wizard left alone, believing the Queen is dead, w/only one remaining spellbook to confront the rest of the 'goyles and turn them to stone, etc.
Perhaps when the Pack first attacks, Goliath and company jump to defend the castle without any request from Xavier. It's that instinctive. Afterwards, (p.6), Xavier asks for their continued protection, and Goliath agrees, largely because at this point, he's already got one foot in the water, so-to-speak.
We still have the three night structure, but we've lost Elisa asking Goliath to give her three nights to show him all that her world has to offer. That always struck me as a nice moment. Was there a reason we took it out? I'm not saying we need it back in, I'm just curious.
Adrienne Bello is our executive here in charge of Standards and Practices. We showed the final version of the outline to her, and she had a concern here regarding our depiction of latchkey kids. Basically, it's a weighty issue, and we really don't have the space to do it justice here. That gave me a thought. Another (easily-solved) problem in the scene is that Goliath doesn't seem to be a participant. No one reacts to him. If we change that, we can see a number of kids (maybe out on the stoop, early evening) reacting differently to him. All should be scared at first, but some are quickly reassured and think Goliath (and Bronx) are way cool. Littler kids might still be frightened, and Goliath sees Elisa comfort and reassure them. Teaching them not to be prejudiced, in essence. Or something. We don't have to make them latchkey kids. Taggers? Just neighborhood kids w/no crime involved? Maybe we create a 20th century counterpart to Robby? Anyway, give it some thought.
This could play into the attack by the Pack. Perhaps our Robby-counterpart witnesses it. And the noise brings more people. They root for the Pack to win out over the "Monster" Goliath. They think the Pack is saving them. Our "Robby-counterpart" could really be confused as to who's good and who's bad. Maybe the crowd helps the Pack? (The right thing to do, as they perceive it, but unfortunately, they've picked the wrong side to help.) Elisa may try to flash her badge, and is knocked aside/out before she can identify herself as a cop. What Fox says to Goliath in the clinches, doesn't have to be heard by the crowd. Maybe the Pack even pretends to try to rescue Elisa from Goliath, making it clear to Goliath and our audience, though not the crowd, that if they get her away from him (and Bronx) she's doomed. [Again, though Bronx is largely a comic relief character, he can be helpful in a fight. Just as Goliath--though basically a dramatic character--has a sense of humor, and can be used in lighter, comic situations.] Goliath has little choice but to retreat with Elisa, with the crowd thinking he's the villain getting away w/a victim (or perhaps accomplice). Then he expresses his frustration that humans could so confuse the heroes and villains, based solely on appearances. If Elisa's conscious at this point, she might try to argue with him.
It's unclear why Goliath thinks the Pack is bent on revenge. What does he think they have to revenge? So far, they've been basically successful in both encounters. At worst, you could say they've fought to a draw.
If Xavier spotted Demona in a book, it was probably an art book, not a history book. Gargoyles didn't make the history books. I know this is just a story Xavier tells Goliath, but we might as well make it as realistic as possible.
Also Demona does not "seem" to be "genuinely pleased" to see the gargoyles; she IS genuinely pleased to see them.
Xavier should claim that the disks will benefit all mankind AND ALL GARGOYLES as well.
Xavier should make his contingency plans w/Owen. That way, we don't have to have him talking to himself, or reveal that he and Demona are in cahoots.
Goliath should probably find Elisa at her place, (maybe he followed her from the police station). As opposed to just happening to spot her on the streets.
Also want to make sure I have all the corporate names straight. XAVIER ENTERPRISES (XE) is Xavier's big conglomerate. SCARAB CORP. is the robotic and cybernetic arm of XE. PACK INC. is the "marketing firm" that handles the Pack, which is owned by a company, which up the ladder is eventually owned by XE. CYBERCORP is Xavier's basically honest competitor and the creators of the anti-grav technology that's on the disks.
The idea of Goliath just sitting on the disks for a night in a warehouse still strikes us as artificial. Maybe Xavier asks Goliath to deliver the disks to someone, at the warehouse or wherever, and then arranges for Elisa to be there.
Angelica/Demona's statement about "If you'd only taken the others away..." isn't enough of a tip-off to make Goliath suspicious. It doesn't sound like she knows something, it sounds like she's using 20-20 hindsight to make him feel bad. At any rate, that would be the natural thing for him to think. Maybe it begins with this, but she takes it a step farther, and that tips Goliath off.
In her explanation of what went wrong, we need to include the notion that the Captain promised her he'd protect the gargoyles, but at the last minute she panicked and left.
We're also unclear how all this has led her to join up with Xavier. Maybe she sees the destruction of humanity in his evil, and she's anxious to help. Or maybe he plans on conquering humanity, and then she plans to take the reins of power from him. Lots of possibilities; we just need to clarify.
Did Xavier send anyone besides Demona (and Elisa) to the "loyalty test". Maybe Owen has been watching from the shadows.
The reason Xavier didn't take Goliath out immediately after the loyalty test can probably be tied to Xavier's intelligence. He knows that the best time to attack the Gargoyle's is during the day, when they're frozen. I think we should make use of this. Have a scene where the Pack (carrying sledgehammers) searches for the Gargoyles in daylight. Elisa hides the gargoyles and/or protects them, and/or lures the Pack away from their location at great personal risk. Now she and Goliath have saved each other. A human he can count on. Etc. At this point, Xavier doesn't want to leave the loose ends untied for too long. He's confident in his new robot creations. (Perhaps there's one that's specifically been modeled after Goliath.) He decides to just get the battle over with. Or maybe it's Goliath and the gargoyles who decides to take the castle back, (with Elisa's help). They attack Xavier. Demona, the steel gargoyles AND the Pack (and Xavier, for that matter) are there to defend the castle. That's kinda ironic and cool.
And that's it. Give me a call if you have any questions. I'd also like to get an approximate target date when you think we'd have the first draft screenplay. Despite all the notes, we're getting really psyched. Good luck.
cc: Gary Krisel, Bruce Cranston, Paul Lacy