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 !  Harem Scare 'Em, part 2

An Original Comedy Screenplay By

"Farmer" John H. Leeper

** Note - Terms used in spec scripts:
O.S. = Off Screen
V.O. = Voice Over
EST = Establishing Shot
INT = Interior
EXT = Exterior
POV = Point Of View
INSERT = A Camera Shot Usually Focusing On An Object


PART 2.

INT. STUDIO ≠ OPRAH WINFREY SHOW ≠ DAY

The smiling face of famous talk-show host Oprah Winfrey fills a studio television monitor.

OPRAH
Welcome back everyone. Iím
sure all my listeners have
been looking forward to meeting
my next guest, action superstar
Lara Prim.

Applause fills the studio punctuated by a few whistles and catcalls.

Beyond the television monitor, sits Oprah and Lara Prim on a set meant to mimic an upscale living room. Lara is seated on a plush, cream-colored couch a few feet from the famous host. She is dressed in a very conservative combination of white blouse with solid navy slacks and jacket, something one might expect to see in a courtroom where the witness needs to impress jurors.

When the applause dies down, Oprah picks up her monologue.

OPRAH
Laraís been dubbed the ďbest manĒ
of Hollywood for her string of
hard-hitting martial arts films.
Sheís currently working on her
eighth feature film, ďThe Amazon
Queen.Ē
(Oprah slowly turns
to Lara)
Lara, itís good to have you on
the show.
LARA
Thanks, Oprah, Iím glad to be
here.

Oprah looks at the studio floor near her feet as though contemplating her first question carefully.

OPRAH
I suppose I could ask about
your latest movie, Lara, but
whatís on everyoneís mind is
your recent breakup with Bruce
Cannon. Friends close to Bruce
claim you physically assaulted
him, although he has personally
refused to comment.
(a beat)
Lara, I have to ask -- what
happened? The two of you looked
like the perfect couple.

Laraís face darkens. She leans forward on her knees and runs the fingers of her right hand through her cropped hair. Lines of emotional stress crease her forehead.

Gathering her composure with what appears to be the greatest of difficulty she returns Oprahís piercing gaze.

LARA
(softly; earnestly)
It was my fault. It wasnít Bruce.
Over the last couple of weeks,
Iíve had a lot of time to think
things over.
(a beat)
I know whatís wrong now.
(a beat)
Me -- Iím whatís wrong.

Laraís voice trails off and she looks at the floor in front of her feet solemnly.

Oprah appears to be genuinely concerned.

OPRAH
Did you really assault Bruce?
LARA
Yes.

A collective gasp from the audience followed by another poignant pause.

OPRAH
Why?

Lara leans back into the plush cushions of the couch and stares emptily into space. She sighs heavily.

LARA
Because I was angry, and because
it made me feel good.

There are groans and sighs of revulsion from the audience, a general clucking of tongues. But as this subsides a PAIR OF MALE FANS howl raucously.

PAIR OF MALE FANS (V.O.)
Beat us, Lara!

A titter of laughter follows. Oprah snickers condescendingly at the unruly fans whose attitudes are obviously out of sync with the rest of the audience.

INTERCUT ≠ OPRAHíS STUDIO/JANETíS APARTMENT

Janet sits alone in her apartment watching her client on television. She has a half smile on her face and cheers Laraís performance.

JANET
Way to go, Lara. Keep it up
girl. Youíre doing good.
OPRAH
A real estate developer from
Laguna Beach -- Robert Patten --
now claims you were seeing him
while you were engaged to Bruce.
He said you agreed to marry him.

Lara holds up four fingers of her right hand.

Oprahís crinkled forehead demonstrates her confusion.

LARA
There were four other men. Thatís
why Bruce is so mad.

More loud gasps from the crowd, followed by a pair of affirming CAT CALLS and whistles from the Pair of Male Fans.

Oprah is taken aback by this revelation and her tone of voice exudes a mixture of moral outrage and amusement.

OPRAH
Let me get this straight . . .
(a beat)
You were seeing four men AND
Bruce Cannon?

Lara nods, pokerfaced.

JANET
is alarmed by this unexpectedly frankness on Laraís part. She speaks to the television nervously while more groans and raucous cheers echo through the speakers. The audience is divided in its response.

JANET
A little too much honesty there,
Lara. Just stick to the script.

Oprah rolls her eyes disapprovingly.

OPRAH
Wow. Five men. Donít you consider
that -- I donít know -- a little
too Jerry Springer?
LARA
(shrugging)
Bruce did.

The audience erupts with laughter.

PAIR OF MALE FANS (V.O.)
We love ya, Lara.

Lara leans her head to one side and examines her pair of male fans in the audience curiously.

Oprah glances in the direction of the audience, but she has a pronounced scowl on her face. She again turns to Lara. There is a sharp edge to her voice.

OPRAH
You were engaged to marry. Marriage
is about commitment.

A large segment of the studio audience claps loudly when they hear this, and there is a general chorus of approval drowning out Laraís two unruly supporters.

Lara becomes suddenly animated as though Oprahís comment has pushed some button deep inside her. She bobs an index finger in Oprahís direction. A monumental thought has emerged from out of the blue.

LARA
Right. Commitment. See, thatís
been my problem. I wonít commit
to one man. I start to get serious
with a guy and then all of these
little things about him start to
bother me, you know. And I keep
thinking thereís someone perfect
waiting out there for me. The
next guy comes along and he
looks perfect, so I agree to
marry him.
(a beat)
And then I find out heís not.
JANET
(to the television;
desperately)
Okay, youíre adlibbing way too
much here.

Oprah softens a bit when she hears this admission of guilt.

OPRAH
Every bride to be has experienced
that feeling, Lara.

More laughter from the live audience.

OPRAH
(jokingly)
But my god, Bruce Cannon has be
about as close to perfect as you
could get. Heís rich. Heís one
of the best looking men in
Hollywood. Heís talented . . .

Lara grimaces and closes one eyelid in an ďI know something you donítĒ attitude.

OPRAH
(a sly grin)
What? What are you saying?
LARA
Wellll . . .
(cuts her eyes towards Oprah)
. . . he pops the cork a little
fast -- if you know what I mean.

Oprahís eyes widen in astonishment at this remark. The conversation has taken an unexpected and embarrassing turn.

OPRAH
(stammering)
Oh -- really -- uh . . .
LARA
Then he wants to roll over and
go to sleep, and Iím revved and
ready.
OPRAH
(uneasy; a nervous
chuckle)
Lots of men are like that,
eh ladies?

There is a loud ďAMENĒ from some woman in the crowd followed by general laughter.

JANET
is on the edge of her chair, staring with fright into the television set.

JANET
No, no Lara -- donít go
there . . .

Laraís body language grows more intense by the moment.

LARA
Dammit, thatís so frustrating.
He lies there sleeping like
a baby while I toss around
all night.
(emphatically to
Oprah)
Thereís only so much of that
a woman can take. Then, you
just want to . . .
(a beat)
. . . I donít know -- beat
the crap out of the bastard.

Oprah draws a sharp breath. She stares at her guest with her mouth agape and the whites of her eyes showing.

JANET
in her apartment mimics Oprahís expression fixated on the television screen with shock and dismay.

JANET
(muttering to herself
rapidly)
Oh god, oh god, oh god . . .

A flustered Oprah knows the time has come to quickly change the subject.

OPRAH
Well -- I understand youíre
going to anger management...

Lara leans toward Oprah until their faces are only inches apart. She has the look and quiet passion of a fanatic.

LARA
God spoke to me, you know.

Oprah freezes in shock, unable to respond.

Lara nods knowingly at her.

LARA
He told me what I really needed.
(a beat)
Do you want to know what he
told me?

Speechless, Oprah nods at her.

LARA
He said I didnít need one man --
I needed a harem full of men.
OPRAH
(disbelief)
A harem?

In the stunned silence the Pair of Male Fans suddenly blurt loudly,

PAIR OF MALE FANS
Take us, Lara, take us!

Lara cuts her head sharply in the direction of the audience.

She focuses on the Pair of Male Fans the way a lioness might upon a sudden noise on the savannah. Lara leaps out of her seat, strips the navy blue jacket off her shoulders and tosses it to the floor. She then strides resolutely across the stage towards the small crowd in the studio.

The baffled cameraman must jerk his camera around to try and follow her.

Lara jumps off the small stage in front of a pair of sun bleached surfer boys who are living replicas of Beavis and Butthead -- only much better looking. They wear T-shirts with Laraís image screened onto the front and have idiotic grins pasted on their faces.

Lara rises to full height. Her demeanor is haughty and cruel, the queen in command.

LARA
You want to be in my harem,
boys?
BEAVIS SURFER
Oh yeah . . .
BUTTHEAD SURFER
Cool.

Lara suddenly reaches out and grabs each of them by the hair of the head. She backs up onto the stage hauling them after her while they emit CRIES of pain.

Once in front of the camera, Lara orders tersely,

LARA
Down on your knees!

For emphasis, she kicks Beavis Surfer behind the right knee putting him on his hands and knees. She keeps a tight grip on their hair.

LARA
Do you know who King Solomon
was?
BEAVIS SURFER
Ow, ouch -- uhhh...

Butthead Surfer excitedly raises his arm like he is in a class at middle school.

BUTTHEAD SURFER
I know, I know. He was like
this big Jewish king and he
had a whole bunch of wives.
LARA
(smiling)
Thatís right. He had 700
wives. And Iím going to
have 700 husbands, and
this is your lucky day.
You get to be my first two
grooms...
(a beat)
...if you make the cut.
BEAVIS SURFER
(snorting joyfully)
Oh, yeah.
BUTTHEAD SURFER
(confused)
Isnít that, like, you know,
bigamy or something?

She yanks his hair fiercely so he whimpers in pain.

LARA
Youíre damn right itís big
of me. And donít you ever
forget it!

Lara releases her painful grip and lovingly strokes the backs of their necks.

Assuming a bold stance in front of the camera, she draws the two kneeling surfer boys against her thighs who cling to her long legs like compliant slaves. She looks like the fantasy image of Conan, the Barbarian, on the cover of a pulp fiction novel with two willing slave girls sprawled at his feet.

LARA
(loudly to the camera)
Bruce, Iím begging you --
come back to me, baby.
I need you.
(a look of intense
hunger in her eyes)
I WANT you.
(a beat)
I want ALL of you.
(a wicked smile)
I want 700 of Americaís
finest men to serve me
for the rest of their
lives.
(extending an index
finger to the camera)
You know thereís only one
REAL woman in America, boys.

Lara slaps her chest boldly and then stretches her arms above the heads of her first pair of servants. With the fierceness of a predator in her voice, she snarls into the camera.

LARA
Thatís me!
(a beat)
Iím your momma, boys. Iím
your momma.

JANET,
all alone in her apartment, has her elbows on her knees and her face buried in the open palms of her hands.

JANET
(muffled defeat)
Alllll rightee, then.

INT. STUDIO OF A TELEVISION NEWS SHOW ó DAY

Anchorwoman Julie North again stands in front of the blue screen that bears the logo for EYE SPY ENTERTAINMENT.

JULIE NORTH
It appears another Hollywood
star has been bitten by the
religion bug. But this one
has taken her newfound faith
to previously unknown heights
-- or depths. Weíll let our
viewers decide.

The logo dissolves and a photo of Lara from the set of Oprah appears on the screen. She is in her classic Conan, the Barbarian, pose. The two surfer lads cling to her legs like compliant slaves.

JULIE NORTH
Lara Prim shocked America
with a bold declaration that
god told her to build a harem
rivaling that of King Solomon,
the greatest Jewish King in the
Bible. The action superstar
claims she intends to marry 700
men.
(grinning broadly)
Howís that for a little action,
ladies and gentlemen?

The photo of Lara dissolves and a still-frame video image of Bruce Cannon standing on a dark street appears on screen.

JULIE NORTH
(just tickled
to death)
One of our roving eyes caught
up with Laraís former fiancť
Bruce Cannon last night outside
a club in Beverley Hills. Bruce,
whom Lara has nicknamed ďQuick
Shooter,Ē had this to say.

The screen rolls into action. Bruce is incensed, nervous. He shakes an angry finger at the Eye Spy news crew.

BRUCE
Now, everybody can see what
sheís really like. Thatís
what I had to put up with
all those months. No one
can satisfy that woman.

He starts to turn and walk away from the news camera, but turns back abruptly.

BRUCE
(desperately)
And sheís lying about me
because I can do it all
night long.
JULIE NORTH
We sent our roving eye
reporters into the street
and got these responses from
our viewers.

SERIES OF SHOTS:

A) A college professor type appears on the screen. He smokes a pipe and tries to look very knowledgeable.

COLLEGE PROFESSOR
Iím a professor of Biblical
History at U.S.C. The real
King Solomon probably could
have walked past most of his
wives in the marketplace and
he wouldnít have known them.
The marriages were political
alliances forged with surrounding
clan chiefs. They had nothing
to do with love ó or lust, for
that matter. They were about
politics. And he was paid
handsome dowries by the girlsí
fathers, which helped to enrich
his kingdom.

B) An Hassidic Jew appears on the screen. He looks angry.

HASSIDIC JEW
This is an insult to the
Jewish people. As King Solomonís
harem was his downfall, I predict
that god will punish this Prim
woman for her sacrilege.

C) A middle-aged black woman shakes her head at the camera in disbelief.

BLACK WOMAN
What is it with that Prim woman,
anyway? Does she think the word
SLUT is a badge of honor?

D) A harried thirtyish white woman trying to corral three rambunctious children fretfully talks to the camera.

WHITE WOMAN
Seven hundred men? Boy, thatís
a lot of different personalities
to get used to. I wouldnít want
to try it.
(angrily at a
child O.S.)
Jared, you stop that right now!

E) Three young Yuppie men are seated in a coffee house booth, sipping lattes.

YUPPIE #1
(serious)
You know, she may be onto
something. The way I see it
polygamy has to make a comeback.
The way things are going itíll
take a woman and two or three
husbands just to pay a house
note.
YUPPIE #2
Iíd like to try out.
YUPPIE #3
(surprised)
Really?
YUPPIE #2
Yeah. Sure. Iíll bet itís
going to be hard to get into
her harem.
YUPPIE #3
So youíd want to share your
wife with 699 other guys?
YUPPIE #2
Hey, I was married, and I
shared my wife with two
other fellows.
(a beat)
At least this time Iíd know
about it.

The other two Yuppies break into laughter.

YUPPIE #2
(thoughtfully)
Besides, it might not be
that bad. I remember how it
was when that time of the
month came around. You know
what I mean? Then it was just . . .
(motions with the
fingers of one hand
like the yapping
of a dog)
Yah, yah, yah, yah, yah.

There are grins all around as they do ďthe guy thing.Ē

YUPPIE #2
So, if I come home and Lara
lights into me, I can just
point to Bob here . . .
(he points at
Yuppie #1)
. . . and say, hey, darliní,
itís Bobís night. I got
bitched at last month. Take
it up with him. Iím gonna
watch a ball game.

There is hearty laughter from the other two.

The video footage dissolves into the logo for Eye Spy Entertainment. Again, Julie North stands in the foreground, beaming.

JULIE NORTH
We were unable to reach Lara
Prim for comment, but her
lawyer, Janet Clark, had
this to say . . .

The screen comes alive once more and Janet is seen with a microphone shoved into her face by a reporter. As usual, she appears combative and unapologetic.

JANET
Lara has simply chosen to make
a bold statement for gender
equality. Men have had harems
for centuries. She sees no
reason why a woman canít do
exactly the same.

CUT TO:

INT. JANET CLARKíS LAW OFFICE ≠ DAY

Janet stands behind her desk in an absolute rage. She is hardly coherent.

Lara sits calmly in a plush chair on the opposite side of the desk.

JANET
Have you lost your fucking
mind?!
(a beat)
A harem?
(another beat)
A HAREM? And where exactly
did you get this flash of
inner insight?
LARA
(very matter of
fact; spoken rapidly)
God spoke to me right from
the Bible. He said King
Solomon had 700 wives and
I should do the same. Only,
I figured he really meant
men because he knows I donít
do the lesbian thing.
(a beat)
I mean, there were a couple
of girls, but I was really
drunk at the time. Besides
I read some other verses that
said he didnít seem to care
very much for the whole
gay-lesbian thing.
(a beat)
If you ask me, itís a little
narrow minded of him. But,
hey, heís god. Heís probably
got his reasons. Maybe he
had a bad experience when he
was younger, or something.
JANET
Lara, Iím an atheist.
LARA
Exactly. Thatís why you
have to trust me on this.
Because Iím a very religious
person.

Janet braces herself with both hands on the surface of the desk and hangs her head low. Her eyes are closed in despair. She can see nothing but clouds of disaster looming on the horizon.

JANET
(ruefully)
I went to Harvard Law School
so I could fight the
objectification of women.
Now, Iím leading the charge
for objectification of men.

A dark possibility suddenly colors her face. Janet looks up quickly at Lara. She appears panic stricken.

JANET
My god, theyíre going to
cancel my subscription to Ms.
Magazine, I just know it.
LARA
(soothingly)
Everything is going to work
out, Janet. Donít worry.
(a beat;
quite serious)
This is all a part of godís
plan.

Janet gives Lara a baleful glare, and then turns and begins to flail at the air in frustration.

JANET
Your career is over. Everyone
in the country thinks youíre
a wacko.
LARA
No, they donít.

Janet talks to herself with such intensity she doesnít appear to hear Lara.

JANET
Seven hundred men? My god,
there are porn stars who
havenít fucked that many guys!
(shouting hysterically)
And if thatís not enough, you
stand on the same stage with
Oprah Winfrey and say youíre
the only REAL woman in
America?
LARA
I meant where men are concerned.
JANET
Oh, thank you very much. Iím
glad to know that where men
are concerned Iím not a real
woman. So what am I then?
LARA
Youíre a lawyer -- and a
damn good one. You should
be proud of that.

Janet opens her mouth to say something sarcastic, but changes her mind. She straightens and raps the tabletop several times with a knuckle. She is regaining her composure and has had about enough of this nonsense.

JANET
Where are those two morons you
found on the Oprah show --
Twiddle Dee and Twiddle Dumber.
LARA
Recovering.
(looking
disappointed)
I donít think theyíre going
to make the cut.

Janet again starts to make a sarcastic comment, but at that moment there is a loud KNOCK on the office door causing Lara and Janet to turn their faces in that direction.

JANET
(loudly; peeved)
What is it? I asked not to
be disturbed.

JANETíS SECRETARY, a heavy-set woman, blonde and quite cute, sticks her head through a crack in the door. She is very apologetic.

JANETíS SECRETARY
Iím sorry, Ms. Clark, but a
Fed Ex package just arrived
and Ms. Prim needs to sign
for it.

Lara hops excitedly out of her chair and heads for the door.

LARA
Is it from Strayhorn Studios?

The secretary opens the door and examines a large Fed Ex tube in her hand. She has a clipboard with a pen and receiving slip in the other.

JANETíS SECRETARY
Yes, I think it is.
LARA
(like a giddy
schoolgirl)
Oh boy, oh boy . . .

Lara snatches the clipboard from the secretaryís hand, quickly signs the slip and grabs the tube. She tears frantically at the tape holding one end of the tube as she heads for Janetís desk. Her eyes are bright with joy as she pops the tube cap free and reaches inside.

Lara looks up at Janet gleefully.

LARA
Do you remember Karl Strayhorn?
He does the best glamour shots.
I called him last night and
he helped me come up with this.
Heís such a great photographer.

Lara hastily pulls a large photo poster from the tube. It is rolled so only the white back of the paper shows.

LARA
(ecstatic)
This is so cool.

She unrolls the poster and holds it up for Janet to see.

LARA
Tah-dah.

The poster shows Lara in a beautiful, white wedding dress. A circle of young, handsome male models in tuxedos are on their knees around her with white-gloved hands extended as though making a Victorian Era proposal of marriage. Laraís right index finger points towards the camera. Large letters on the poster read ďLARA PRIM WANTS YOU!Ē Smaller letters ask the question, ďAre you man enough?Ē

Another sharp pain appears to have knifed its way through Janetís skull and she closes her eyes tightly.

JANET
(softly)
Oh, god.

Lara turns the poster around and studies it with delight.

LARA
I told Karl I wanted something
traditional.

Janetís jaw drops open, and she looks up in shock.

JANET
Traditional? Traditional what?
Gang bang?
LARA
(a little put out)
You are so negative. Iím
telling you everything is
going to be fine.

The secretary has reappeared at the doorway and waves to get their attention.

JANETíS SECRETARY
Iím sorry to bother you
again, but Ms. Prim has had
two important calls she needs
to answer.
JANET
Does one happen to be from
the psychiatric ward at
Bellevue?
JANETíS SECRETARY
The president of Paramount
Pictures called.
JANET
(a wave of nausea)
Oh no. This is it.
JANETíS SECRETARY
He wanted you to call him right
away, Ms. Prim. He wanted me to
tell you he thought this was
the greatest publicity stunt of
all time. It seems the studio
has already gotten over ten
thousand calls from potential
suitors. He said you could use
an old sound stage if you needed
to interview a lot of them at
once.
(a beat)
Only -- no sex or alcohol on
the lot.
LARA
(snickering)
No sex on the lot? Wow,
those suits in the main
office are really out of
touch with reality, huh?
JANET
Right. Totally unlike the
actors and actresses who
work for them.
JANETíS SECRETARY
And the publisher of Maxim
Magazine in New York wants
you to call him right away.
They want to name you Woman
of the Century, and they want
to give you a free double-page
ad for your harem if they can
have exclusive photo rights to
any wedding ceremonies.

Lara grins and shrugs as if to say, ďTold you so.Ē

LARA
(to Janet; smugly)
See, itís all in godís
hands.

Janet shakes her head in disbelief.

JANET
Alll rightee, then.

INT. SOUND STAGE ≠ PARAMOUNT PICTURES ≠ DAY

A microphone sits alone on a broad stage, framed against an enormous American flag that extends from one side of the screen to the other.

There is a murmur of many male voices O.S., sporadic laughter, and an intermittent grinding of chairs against a concrete floor.

Janet, dressed in a dark business suit with jacket and dress, strides towards the microphone. In the crook of her right arm she carries a legal-size clipboard that holds dozens of typewritten pages. She wears glasses with thick, dark frames and looks very ďlawyerish.Ē

Janet fumbles with the mike, clicking the on switch. There is a screech of reverb for an instant.

JANET
(loudly)
Excuse me, please. Excuse
me. Could everyone please
find a seat and get quiet
so we can move on.

The voices slowly die down and there are more sounds of chairs being drug about.

JANET
First of all, I would like
to thank the studio executives
of Paramount Pictures for
offering us this sound stage
for our initial screening of
harem applicants.

While the noise dies down and order is achieved, Janet looks like the impatient schoolteacher on stage, scowling at an unruly class.

JANET
I have one quick bit of
housecleaning information before
we get started. Somehow, my
office email address has been
distributed among you. I want
you to know that I do NOT
appreciate the 417 photographs
of nude men Iíve received in
the last three days.
(glares about angrily)
I also want you to know that
my client, Lara Prim, hasnít
seen any of those because I
had them all deleted.

Janet hastily flips through pages on her clipboard until she reaches a sheet deep in the stack. It has three large squares on the surface near the bottom. There is a column of fine print along the side. She turns the clipboard towards the audience of male applicants and waves it from side to side to be sure all of them can see the page.

JANET
(hot and bothered)
Page 17, attachment B of the
application form. See these
squares?
(tapping blank squares
with an index finger)
It says quite plainly --
three nude photographs --
full front, side and back
go here, here and here.
(taps column of
text beside squares)
My client even left you
detailed instructions on
how to . . .
(she stops and
grasps for words)
. . . prepare -- for those
photos.

Janet flips the pages down smartly and yanks the clipboard back to her side.

JANET
(peeved)
What is it with you men,
anyway? Why canít you just
read the damned instructions?

Janet taps her foot impatiently and straightens her thick glasses.

JANET
(points accusingly
at the male audience)
Any more emails like that and
whoever sends them is out.
Got it?
(a beat)
Iíve had just about enough
nonsense.

Janet snaps her head about angrily surveying the audience and then flips through the host of pages.

JANET
As Iím sure you are all aware,
polygamy is against the law in the
United States, as are same-sex
marriages. Another example of this
oppressive, bourgeois, social prison
in which we all live. So, what we
have here is a binding partnership
agreement between my client and
you, the terms of which can be
found on page 27 . . .

A male voice suddenly rings out from a back row.

MALE VOICE NO. 1 (O.S.)
Are we gonna live in a palace?

Janet glances up disapprovingly and then continues to thumb through the forms in her clipboard.

JANET
(dripping sarcasm)
Sorry. The last time I checked
the real estate section, 700
bedroom homes were in short
supply.
(looking again
at her clipboard)
Now, if youíll look at page 27. --
MALE VOICE NO. 2 (O.S.)
Can we have girlfriends?
JANET
(startled;
looking up)
What?
MALE VOICE NO. 2 (O.S.)
If thereís 700 of us, we
arenít going to get to see
Lara except, like half a day a
year. Can we have girlfriends?

There is a rumble of approval from many of the men.

JANET
(disgusted)
God, thatís just like a man.
(emphatically to
the crowd)
If youíre not interested in a
serious, committed relationship
with my client, you need to
leave right this minute.
(a beat)
After all, Lara is willing to
be completely faithful to 700
of you for the rest of her
life.

Janet stares at the crowd angrily for a few seconds, then comes a burst of honesty.

JANET
Besides, one night with my
client and you wonít be interested
in any other women for some time
to come.
(raises her
eyebrows knowingly;
to herself quietly)
I can guarantee that.

Another male voice calls from the distance.

MALE VOICE NO. 3 (O.S.)
Do we HAVE to fill out all
these pages?
JANET
No application for my clientís
harem will be reviewed unless all
the relevant data and legal
documents are completed in full.
(a beat)
In fact one of the most important
is the marriage proposal essay on
page 33. This should be typed or
hand printed. No more than 500
words. My client wants to know
why you think youíre worthy to be
her harem husband.
(a beat)
And please, donít just write about
your prowess in the bedroom, okay?
Thereís a lot more to marriage
than sex.

Janet fumbles through the pages and pulls out a sheet that she holds in her right hand. Her face acquires a benign expression. There is romantic warmth in her tone of voice as she reads from the paper.

JANET
Oh, god, this proposal is just
wonderful. Listen to this.
ďSince I first saw you on the
silver screen, I loved you, Lara.
You are a bright light in a dark
world for me. While I am unworthy
of your love, I want you to know
my dream for us. I own a beautiful
condo in Hawaii where I pray that
you will join me for a long,
moonlit walk on the beach. Just
an hour with you, hand-in-hand,
under the stars would fulfill my
every lifeís desire. Wonít you
please marry me?Ē

Janet stares at the page and sighs deeply.

JANET
(looking at the
audience)
See? This is a man who understands
that women need romance.

There is a sudden hubbub of voices as from behind Janet, stage right, Lara suddenly strides resolutely towards the microphone, a pronounced scowl on her face.

Janet is caught off guard by Laraís sudden appearance on stage.

Lara steps to the microphone, rudely brushing Janet aside. Angrily, she yanks the clipboard out of Janetís hand.

LARA
Give me that.

Lara thumbs through the pages until she find what she is looking for and holds the board up so the audience of men can see it.

LARA
See this page?
(grim determination
in her eyes)
Physical characteristics.
(a beat)
Whatever you put down there had
better damned well be accurate.
You hear me?

Lara looks from one side of the audience to the other. Her jaw is rigid. She means business.

LARA
Iím your wife. You donít lie
to me. EVER! Because Iíll
find out. And you donít want
me to find out.

While she speaks a pair of MEDICS walk across the rear of the stage, holding either end of a hospital gurney. Lying on the gurney is a YOUNG MAN wearing a T-shirt, boxer shorts and white athletic socks. He has both hand clasped over his groin. He writhes about and GROANS loudly, obviously in enormous pain.

The bewildered Janet snaps her head around quickly from Lara to the injured man to the audience.

Lara is so livid the whites of her eyes are showing. She taps the page.

LARA
If it says 13 inches here, it
had better damned well be 13
inches there.
(points with
ferocity at the
audience)
You got me?

Lara bruskly shoves the clipboard back to Janet, turns and storms O.S. right in a huff.

Janet stares after her and then glances again in the opposite direction where the emergency workers have carried the injured young man O.S. left.

Janet struggles to regain her composure, clearing her throat nervously. She appears to notice a lot of activity taking place throughout the auditorium.

JANET
(voice filled
with disdain)
While many of you are adjusting
your vital statistics, let me
direct your attention to the
property rights and annual
tribute clauses on page
19 . . .

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. JANETíS LAW OFFICE ó DAY

Janet is seated at her desk in her law office almost hidden from view by enormous stacks of application forms.

There is a soft KNOCK on the door and she looks up.

JANET
Come in.

KARL TANNER sticks a head through the door. He is a well-preserved ďsixtyishĒ and wears a flannel shirt and neatly pressed slacks. He carries a gray felt hat in his hand. Karl flashes Janet an impish smile.

KARL
Iím Karl Tanner. Someone said
you wanted to see me.

Janet shoves two of the huge stacks aside so she can get a better look at him.

JANET
Oh, yes -- yes. Come in.

Karl bounces into the room and sits in the plush chair in front of Janet. He appraises the stacks of applications with wonder.

KARL
Whoa. Thatís a lot of applicants.
JANET
A total of 8,756. We pitched
out twice that many last week.
KARL
Wow.
(fiddles with his
hat for two beats)
So, why did you want to see me?

Janet fishes around on the desk and locates his application form. She leafs through it.

JANET
I read your application, and
it just stood out from all of
the others. It was very well
written and -- amazingly
thoughtful by comparison.
KARL
(happily)
Thank you.

Janet suddenly looks troubled.

JANET
Then I noticed the photos were
taken in 1972.

Karl knows heís been caught but still runs a bluff.

KARL
(grinning; wagging
a finger at Janet)
The application didnít say it
had to be current photos.
(a beat)
My ex wife snapped those on
our wedding night.

Karl sees Janetís disapproving twist of the eyebrows, drops his head, fiddles with his hat and shrugs in defeat; but he maintains his sense of humor.

KARL
Okay, you got me. But it was
worth a try.

Janet becomes serious.

JANET
And thatís what I donít
understand. Why was it
worth a try?
(a beat)
I mean, youíre a well-educated
man, obviously, and not
unattractive for yourrrr...
KARL
(wincing)
Level of maturity?
JANET
(quickly)
Yes. Thatís it.

Karl winks at her.

KARL
To tell you the truth, this
setup was perfect for me.

Janet scrunches her forehead into a look that says she really doesnít understand.

KARL
(chuckling)
I read between the lines in
your contract. Older guys do
that sort of thing, you know.
What Lara really wants is,
"You can't have sex with anyone
else but me, but I can have sex
with anyone I want to, pretty
much whenever I want to." Right?

Janet gives him a grudging shrug of agreement.

KARL
Hey, I was married 23 years.
My ex wife had exactly the
same idea. I have experience
on my side.

Janet bobs her head in assent.

JANET
Good point.
KARL
Look, if Iím in Laraís harem,
I could reasonably assume there
were 699 fellows she liked more
than me. Marriage wouldn't
change my life one bit. I
doubt Iíd even see her
except in the movies.
JANET
So why marry her?
(a beat)
And why pay the annual tribute
Lara expects for the right to
be her husband?

Karl gives her a ďWhaddaya mean?Ē look. He grins broadly.

KARL
Hey, whatever I end up paying
your client -- itís going to
be a lot less than I ended up
giving my ex wife, and thereíll
be fewer headaches with Lara.

Karl settles into the plush chair and studies Janet critically for a moment.

KARL
Lara IS going to send out
Christmas cards -- Anniversary
cards -- that sort of thing,
isnít she?
(a beat)
I mean, we ARE her husbands.
She wouldnít want to be
insensitive.
JANET
That was the reason the annual
tribute clause came up, actually.
(a beat)
It dawned on me there would
be a significant cost involved
to keeping track of 700 men.

Janet studies the enormous stacks of applications ruefully.

JANET
God, the postage alone is going
to be horrific.

Karl appears relieved when he hears this.

KARL
Right. So I get these cards
from her two or three times a
year, and I show them off to
all my buddies in town. They
all walk around and say . . .
(as though elbowing
an invisible friend)
. . . ďHey, look over there.
Thatís Karl Tanner. Heís the
husband of that big movie star.
He must have it where it
counts.Ē

Karl crooks his right arm and makes a fist, signifying virility. He raises his eyebrows a couple of times and then winks jovially at Janet.

Janet can see the logic in his argument. Then, she flips through the pages of the application form, and her knit forehead indicates trouble.

JANET
The problem is your annual
tribute is a little low.
KARL
(brightly)
Not if you take the second option.

Janet flips another page. She looks confused.

JANET
Ah -- yes. It says here youíre
a farmer in . . .
(a beat)
. . . Hogwaller, Tennessee?
(looking up)
Thereís a real town by that
name?
KARL
You betcha. Just a hop and a
skip from Frog Jump, and not
too far from Bucksnort.
JANET
And you grow -- specialty
flowering plants?

Janet gives Karl a quizzical look.

KARL
Specialty flowering plants.

Karl pinches a thumb and index fingertip tightly together and brings them to his lips. He sucks in air loudly, indicating a marijuana joint.

The light of understanding dawns for Janet.

JANET
Oh -- OH . . . you grow
specialty flowering plants.
KARL
I figure with 700 men around
that might come in handy on
occasion.

Janet turns her head and stares emptily into the distance.

JANET
(musing to herself)
Yes. I can see where it might.

Karl leans forward and the earnest look in his eyes shows he is ready to make the deal.

KARL
Two kilos a year.

Janetís head snaps around and, without thinking, she is automatically in legal negotiations mode.

JANET
Five.
KARL
Three.
JANET
Four.
KARL
Done.

He leans forward and extends a hand to shake on the deal.

Janet is hesitant at first. Then she sighs, leans forward and takes his hand. She is quite serious now as she studies the stacks of paper on her desktop.

JANET
You know, Karl -- of all of
these men, I think youíre the
only sane guy in the bunch.
At least you know why you
want to be in this harem.

Janet releases his hand and holds his application high as she opens a desk drawer.

JANET
Iím going to keep your
application outside the
normal review process and
see if I canít find a
slot for you.
(a beat; ruefully)
This group definitely needs
some adult supervision.

Janet drops the application into the desk drawer while Karl settles happily into his chair.

KARL
(smiling broadly)
King Solomonís 700th wife.
(a beat)
Not a bad spot.
(a beat)
All the benefits. None of the
performances.

Karl chuckles victoriously.

DISSOLVE TO:

INT. STUDIO OF A TELEVISION NEWS SHOW ó DAY

Anchorwoman JULIE NORTH again stands before the blue screen that bears the programís logo ďEYE SPY ENTERTAINMENT.Ē

JULIE NORTH
This is Julie North with Eye
Spy Entertainment bringing you
the juiciest gossip on your
favorite Hollywood stars.
Well, folks, itís official.
Lara Prim has tied the knot
with 700 significant others,
accomplishing what she promised
two months ago on the Oprah
Winfrey Show. She has a
personal harem of men
rivaling that of the Biblical
King Solomom.

The logo dissolves and a photo of a long line of men in tuxedos standing outside a WEDDING CHAPEL appears on the blue screen. Their backs are to the camera as they await their turn at the altar. A sign over the double doors reads: ďTie the Knot Wedding Chapel.Ē

JULIE NORTH
The mass partnership ceremony
was held at a small chapel
near San Diego. Apparently, the
vows were exchanged with the
assistance of a self-proclaimed
high priestess of the Christian-
Druidic-Buddhist faith named
Glenda Sorenson.

A photo appears of Glenda outside the chapel dressed in a flowing white gown. The shot has obviously been taken at a great distance with a telescopic lens. Painted blue runes adorn Glendaís face and arms. She resembles a wild tribesman from ancient New Zealand.

Lara is talking to Glenda. She is dressed in a traditional white wedding gown. Crowded around them are men in tuxedoes.

JULIE NORTH
Some of our listeners may remember
Glenda as the co-star of a short-
lived thriller on the Sci-Fi
channel called ďAlternate RealityĒ
that aired in the mid 1990s.
(a beat)
Eye Spy Entertainment has learned
that over 30,000 men from 28
countries around the world
applied for a spot in Laraís
harem. It appears some were
willing to pay up to $50,000 a
year for the privilege of being
called Mr. Prim.
(a beat)
We sent our roving eye reporters
into the street and got these
responses from our viewers.

SERIES OF SHOTS:

A) A young, attractive BLONDE GIRL sits at a Starbuckís sipping a latte. She is incredulous.

BLONDE GIRL
Thirty thousand? Thereís that
many men in the world who want
to marry?

B) A middle aged, heavy-set, BEARDED MAN sits on a park bench reading a newspaper. He looks critically at the camera over a pair of spectacles perched on the end of his nose. He doesnít appear happy about being disturbed.

BEARDED MAN
(pokerfaced)
Thank god she doesnít live in
Florida. She and her consorts
might cast the deciding vote.

He snaps his paper up, pointedly ignores the cameraman and begins to read once more.

BEARDED MAN
Think about that.

C) Two young ladies stare in awe at the camera, open mouthed.

YOUNG LADY NO. 1
(dismayed)
Isnít there a law against that
in America -- you know, hogging
up all the men? She canít do
that can she?

Loud BLEEPING sounds drown out the second ladyís oaths.

YOUNG LADY NO. 2
(sudden anger)
Sheís a (BLEEP) movie star.
She can do any damn thing she
wants to in this (BLEEP)
country.

D) A trio of under achievers wearing sports T-shirts sit at a beer-strewn table in a local pub. A CHUBBY FELLOW with a receding hairline shakes his head in wonder and talks to a companion wearing a DALLAS COWBOYS T-shirt.

CHUBBY FELLOW
Those guys got it made.
DALLAS COWBOYS GUY
How you figure?
CHUBBY FELLOW
(earnestly)
Man, theyíll always have a
buddy to watch a ball game
with, you know?
(a beat)
Just think of the awesome
Super Bowl party theyíre gonna have.

The other two fellows nod and GRUNT in deep appreciation.

E) A NO-NONSENSE BUSINESSMAN stops on the street outside an office building. His expression is calculating. Dollars and cents are in his eyes.

NO-NONSENSE BUSINESSMAN
Seven hundred of anything is
a commodity. If those fellows
play their cards right, they
should score some big
endorsements.

Julie North appears again in the studio and a cover of the popular menís magazine ďMaximĒ spins into view on the blue screen behind her. A bikini-clad Lara adorns the cover.

JULIE NORTH
Maxim Magazine named Lara Prim
the ďWoman of the CenturyĒ and
has been granted exclusive
photo and film rights to the
harem wedding. A special
edition of the famous menís
magazine is scheduled for
release next week.

The ďMaximĒ cover dissolves and a photo of six Greyhound buses close together and rolling down a California roadway appears on the screen.

JULIE NORTH
The mass ceremony took over five
hours to perform, but as soon as
the vows were exchanged, Lara and
her grooms boarded six chartered
Greyhound buses and drove to the
San Diego harbor where a
honeymoon cruise ship awaited.

A cruise ship photo supplants the bus shot.

JULIE NORTH
Lara and her happy harem will
be spending the next two
weeks somewhere off the
coast of Mexico.

EXT. CRUISE SHIP ó STERN DECK ó DAY

It is early morning ó a clear and beautiful day far out at sea. Waves dash noisily against the metal hull of a cruise ship.

The broad stern deck looks like the scene of some massive post-fraternity beer bash. Beer and liquor bottles are scattered to and fro. Two dozen men, some half naked, others with bare backsides pointed skyward, are passed out on benches, the shipís deck and folding chairs.

Lara Prim, wearing a thick terry cloth bathrobe, strides resolutely among the wasted males, hands in her robe pockets. She is wide awake and vibrant, taking in the beautiful morning at sea as though she doesnít have a care in the world.

At her heels, a bleary-eyed Janet stumbles along, nervously glancing this way and that. Her weary, red eyes and frazzled hair shows she hasnít had much sleep.

Lara stops, closes her eyes, turns her face skyward and stretches languidly in the sun. This is a woman absolutely satisfied with life.

LARA
(brightly)
Marriage really must agree
with me.

She observes one of her better looking, muscular harem husbands sleeping face up on a reclining pool chair. He is naked save for the towel draped across his privates.

Lara grows hopeful, reaches down and peeks beneath the towel.

She frowns with disappointment and moves along.

Janet, standing nearby, is fumbling for a package of cigarettes in her wrinkled blouse pocket.

Janet stares around ruefully at the semi-nude bodies scattered here and there. She doesnít notice one fellow lying on a bench directly behind her sleeping with his back to them.

JANET
(to herself with
disgust)
I hope I never see another
naked man for the rest of my
life.

Half asleep and hearing a voice, the SLEEPERíS hand drifts up and grabís Janetís backside.

A startled Janet jumps in fright and SQUEALS loudly.

JANET
Yiiieee!

She whirls about and fiercely slaps the manís hand.

Janet hovers over the sleeper, shaking a finger angrily at him.

JANET
One more stunt like that,
buddy, and youíre out of
the harem. You got it?

Janet pursues Lara while glaring angrily over her shoulder at the offender who settles back into slumber with a low moan.

Lara reaches the stern of the cruise ship where the boiling noise of water from the shipís propellers can be hear in the b.g. She spreads her arms across the railing and breathes in deeply, enjoying the smell of the salt air.

Janet reaches her side and brings a cigarette to her lips, lighting it with trembling fingers. She inhales deeply and releases a cloud of smoke.

JANET
(bitterly)
Why is it youíre the one having
all the sex and Iím the one that
needs a cigarette?
LARA
(concerned)
Are you getting enough sleep?
You donít look so good.

Janet snaps her head around and stares angrily at Lara.

JANET
Itís a little tough to sleep
when youíre baby sitting six
men in the infirmary.

Janet holds up her left arm and rolls back her sleeve to show a set of dark bruises. The cigarette dangles in her mouth as she speaks excitedly.

JANET
See those bruises. Thatís where
Bob was squeezing my arm while
they gave him stitches.
LARA
(perplexed)
Bob?
JANET
The guy whose dick you
apparently tried to bite off
last night. Bob Manken.

Laraís wrinkled brow indicates this doesnít ring a bell.

JANET
The water skier from Michigan.

Still, there is consternation written on Laraís face.

JANET
(put out)
The guy whose tongue is roughly
the size of a garden shovel.

There is an instantaneous light of joyful recognition in Laraís eyes. Her voice drops to a throaty, amorous purr.

LARA
Oh yes. Heís one of my favorite
husbands. The first time he
opened his mouth I knew we were
meant for each other.
JANET
(disgusted)
How can you French kiss that
guy without strangling?

Janet steps away, shuddering in revulsion.

JANET
God . . .

Her path is barred by another deck chair covered with a thick, white tarpaulin such as might be found on a life boat. Obviously there is something underneath the canvas and she flips the top edge of it back to reveal the face of the old druggie Karl. He is wearing a blue Hawaiian-style shirt.

Instantly, Karl brings an index finger to his pursed lips indicating he wants Janet to stay quiet. He slips again beneath the canvas, obviously hiding from view.

A perplexed Janet turns back again to Lara who is staring out to sea. Lara appears suddenly troubled, turns and looks inquisitively at Janet.

LARA
Are you sure everybodyís
aboard?
JANET
Yeah.

Lara shakes her head as though something isnít right.

LARA
I could swear Iím missing a
husband.

Janetís head remains fixed, but her eyes roll in the direction of Karl, whose tarpaulin-covered deck chair is in the b.g.

JANET
(hesitantly)
No. All 700 are here.
Remember? I took a roll
call.

Lara turns her head and her face appears suddenly frightened.

LARA
You donít suppose somebody fell
overboard?
JANET
No, you just miscounted.
LARA
I donít think so. Iím not the
kind of girl that sleeps with
a guy and then forgets about
him.
JANET
How the hell could you tell?
There were two dozen guys in
the pool with you last night.
LARA
(serious)
Twenty seven.

Janet shakes her head in disgust and takes another nervous drag on her cigarette.

JANET
What are your insides made of
anyway, old boot leather?
(accusingly)
Iím not getting in that pool
EVER again, and donít give me
any bullshit about chlorine
either. That was just nasty.

Lara gives her friend a look of genuine concern.

LARA
Youíre very repressed sexually.
Itís probably why you donít
sleep.

Janet rolls her eyes at an uncaring sky.

Lara again stares emptily at the sea, worried.

LARA
(muttering)
Iím missing my 700th husband.
JANET
(emphatically)
You are not.
LARA
I think we should call roll
again.
JANET
Call roll? Do you have any
idea . . .

Janet abruptly stops, giving up on the concept of rational argument. Instead, she tries a new tactic.

JANET
All the guys are on board.
So, just ask yourself --
would any man alive NOT
want a night with Lara
Prim?

Laraís brow knits thoughtfully and she stares for several beats at the distant horizon. Finally, she nods in agreement.

LARA
Thatís true.
(a beat)
I must have miscounted.

Lara begins counting on her fingers.

JANET
Shouldnít you check on Bob?
LARA
Bob who?
(sudden light
of recognition)
Oh, Bob . . .
(curious)
Why?
JANET
Because heís still in the shipís
infirmary and you put him there.
LARA
Oh yeah, right.
(a beat)
Couldnít I just send a get
well card? I really donít
like hospitals.
JANET
(annoyed)
He IS your husband.

Lara is cornered. She sighs in defeat.

LARA
I guess youíre right.
(turning abruptly)
Did I hurt his tongue?
JANET
What?
LARA
His tongue. Is it okay?
JANET
I suppose so. He was using it
to scream enough last night.

Lara becomes contemplative.

LARA
Maybe I SHOULD visit him...
(a beat)
...comfort him, you know.
JANET
(cynically)
Right -- you go comfort him.
LARA
Want to meet for breakfast in
a half hour?
JANET
(depressed)
Yeah, sure.

Lara exits.

Janet leans heavily over the stern railing and tosses her cigarette into the sea.

Karl appears at her right shoulder.

KARL
Thanks for covering for me. I
really like Lara, but I think
itíd be safer to have sex with
a porcupine.

Janet is distracted. She stares emptily at the turbulent wake of the ship.

Karl notices her detachment and grows concerned.

KARL
Are you okay?

Janet shakes her head sadly.

JANET
No.

She points at the water below.

JANET
See that?

INSERT: A PIECE OF DRIFTWOOD

A piece of driftwood whirls about in the wake of the ship.

BACK TO SCENE

JANET
Thatís me.
(sighs heavily)
Laraís like a big ship and Iím
just that little piece of wood
caught in its wake, going round
and round -- never able to get
free.

Karl leans on the rail, stares after Lara and then back at Janet.

KARL
Lara doesnít know how lucky she
is to have a friend like you.
(a beat)
The way I see it, youíre the
only thing that keeps her from
hitting the wall.

Janet turns sad brown eyes towards Karl and he becomes more jovial.

KARL
Me and some of the shipís crew
are going to have a little
card game tonight in the engine
room where no one can find us.

Janet gives him a quick smile.

JANET
Thanks. I may take you up on
that.

Karl again looks in the direction of Lara. He suddenly becomes serious again.

KARL
Laraís a trip. No question
about that.
(turning back
to Janet)
But I can tell you something
from personal experience. You
need to be real careful what
you wish for in this life,
because you might just get it.

-- END PART TWO --

--Back to Top--

 !  Sidebar Information /
Fan Fiction

Jolene Blalock

In this script, Jolene Blalock plays the part of Lara Prim. To read a brief biography, go to Jolene Blalock >>.


Janeane Garofalo

In this script, Kathy Griffin plays the part of Janet Clark. To read a brief biography, go to Kathy Griffin >>.


CAST OF CHARACTERS:
Lara Prim: Jolene Blalock
Janet Clark: Kathy Griffin
Frank Hanlon: David OíHara
Bud, the giant: The Undertaker
Bruce Cannon: Greg Kinnear
Glenda: Traci Lords
Karl Tanner: Dennis Hopper

Rating: PG-13 Mature Audiences, possibly R for adult content & situations


Even for Hollywood, action super star Lara Prim (Jolene Blalock: Star Trek: Enterprise) has a personal life that qualifies as ďover the top.Ē She cannot seem to stop asking men to marry her and then running away before the wedding bells begin to chime. It is a habit that keeps her attorney and loyal friend Janet Clark (Janeane Garofalo: The Truth About Cats and Dogs, The Matchmaker, Mystery Men) hopping. But Janetís problems with her hormone-charged client reach a new level when Lara concludes that god has spoken to her and given her an order to build a harem on a par with that of King Solomon, the greatest Jewish ruler in the Old Testament. Solomon had 700 wives. She wants 700 husbands. Lara achieves her matrimonial goal only to discover the truth in an old proverb: be careful what you wish for, because you might just get it.

Select any one of the links below to go to another part of
Harem Scare 'Em >> 1 | 2 | 3 | 4


John Leeper is an heirloom tomato farmer, children's author, religious scholar and former Mississippi River rat now living in Northwest Tennessee. Check out his website at www.guruofthegarden.com. Click here to see his full bio. John H. Leeper >>

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