SCRIPT – Abyssus Act 1

This is the first act of my horror script, Abyssus, something I have been thinking about doing for the last 15 years and finally managed to finish it. This script is a loving tribute to the monster film genre, influenced by such classics as Alien and The Thing.

Abyssus tells the story of Antonio Bay Atlantic Oil Platform 31 and its 11 man skeleton crew overseeing final preparations before the rig is activated. They are scheduled for one final inspection from the EPA before they begin. However, on the day of the inspection, the helicopter pilot spots a yacht that has been missing for two weeks. The crew is perplexed by the discovery of strange centuries old hand carved stones on the ocean floor. Soon the helicopter is sabotaged, and the radio. Soon is becomes clear that something has snuck on board, something not human that has been waiting in the sea for the perfect chance to strike.

Will anyone survive this terror from the deep?

Hope you enjoy. Contact me via email if you’re interested in seeing the entire script.

ABYSSUS

Written by Eric Hanson

Story by Eric Hanson

EXT. OCEAN – NIGHT

500 MILES OFF THE COAST OF MASSACHUSETTS.

The night on the sea is dark. The only source of light is a small fishing trawler, THE CARPENTER, illuminating the unfriendly dark.

Two lights emerge in the water, flashlights held by two fishermen in a small raft, CONNERS and DAVIDS, both in their mid 30s. They frantically paddle towards the Carpenter.

CONNERS

Faster, Davids! Faster!

DAVIDS

I’m trying to go faster!

Davids looks back.

DAVIDS

Conners, look!

Conners turns back. A man sized BLUE GLOW moves towards them beneath the water’s surface. Conners stands up with a rifle and fires at the light, which vanishes.

A large harpoon pierces the bottom of the raft, right next to Davids’ hand.

DAVIDS

Conners, it’s here!

Conners sticks the rifle into the hole and fires twice. The spear retracts and the two reach the Carpenter. Davids boards first and starts to pull Conners on board.

DAVIDS

Callahan! Callahan, where are you?

CONNERS

He’s dead. Let’s get the hell-

A harpoon stabs through Conners’ chest from behind, spraying Davids with blood.

DAVIDS

Conners!

CONNERS

Old pop-

Conners is flung into the sea and vanishes in a spray of white foam and blood. The splash lights up a bright blue glow, illuminating the horrified Davids as he screams. A monstrous voice roars at Davids.

MONSTER 1

Fures!

EXT. ATLANTIC – DAY

High above the featureless Atlantic ocean flies a lone chopper. A logo is painted on the side, ANTONIO BAY ATLANTIC.

INT. HELICOPTER – DAY

SAMUELS, 40s, a working man with more than a little beard stubble sits at the chopper’s helm. A coffee pot sits in the seat next to him, plugged into the cigarette lighter.

In the back is FAHEED ISA, 30s, a suit and tie wearing Arabic man who reads over some documents in his lap. The chopper banks, flustering the already nervous man. Samuels pours him a cup of coffee.

SAMUELS

Coffee, Mr. Isa.

FAHEED

Please, call me Faheed. Thank you, Samuels.

Faheed takes the cup as Samuels takes a swig out of the entire pot, a move that surprises the inspector.

FAHEED

How much longer till we land?

SAMUELS

(checks watch)

Trip out of Nantucket is about five hundred miles. I would say another hour and twenty. I still don’t understand why you EPA guys couldn’t wait until the rig was finished.

Faheed pulls out a stack of papers.

FAHEED

Just following protocol. According to code 629 Dash 49 Item 6700 Extract 7500131, we need to do several sweeps prior activation to reduce risk of accidents.

SAMUELS

What was the name of that bulletin?

FAHEED

629 Dash 49 Item 6700 Extract 7500131.

SAMUELS

Oh. Oh, that one.

Faheed and Samuels look at each other and laugh.

SAMUELS

(looking out window)

Whoa, hold on.

Faheed looks out as well as Samuels banks the chopper. Below them is the abandoned Carpenter and a small yacht.

INT. CARPENTER – DAY

Something on board the Carpenter retreats below the window as the chopper flies low and circles the two boats.

INT. HELICOPTER – DAY

SAMUELS

The Carpenter. I know these guys.

Samuels picks up his radio.

SAMUELS

Hello Conners. Samuels here. How you doing down there? Over.

Beat. No response.

SAMUELS

Conners, are your ears up? Over.

Still no response.

SAMUELS

That’s weird. See if you can get a name off the yacht, will you?

Faheed grabs a pair of binoculars from the glove compartment and glimpses the title of the yacht on the stern. THE REVENANT.

FAHEED

Looks like Revenant.

SAMUELS

Reported missing two weeks ago.

Samuels holds the radio close to his mouth.

SAMUELS

Coast Guard, this is the chopper for Antonio Bay Atlantic Platform 31. I have a visual on the missing yacht The Revenant and the fishing vessel The Carpenter about four hundred and fifty miles due east of Nantucket. Sending you the coordinates.

RADIO VOICE

Copy that Antonio Bay Atlantic.

INT. CARPENTER – DAY

The unseen entity watches as the chopper leaves the scene.

MONSTER 1

Fures.

EXT. OIL PLATFORM – DAY

The oil rig Antonio Bay Atlantic Platform 31 sits idly on the sea, an almost cozy setting cut off from the world.

INT. CONTROL TOWER – DAY

Three men, radio operator MICHAEL, second mate EDMUND and manager HERSCHEL work in the platform’s tower. Michael sits at a radar screen.

MICHAEL

Got Samuels on the radar.

HERSCHEL

The pad ready?

EDMUND

Already had Hudson and Keith clear it. I’m not risking another complaint.

Edmund and Herschel leave the control center.

INT. MESS HALL – DAY

HUDSON, STEW and KEITH all in their late 30s or early 40s sit around a table and play a game of Pinochle. Hudson throws an Ace of Spades on the table.

HUDSON

Thirty eight points for a grand total of one hundred and two.

STEW

Asshole.

HUDSON

Who’s up for another game?

KEITH

If we use a new deck. That one is cursed.

STEW

Just bad luck, Keith.

HUDSON

No Stew, he’s right. Sometimes you do get cursed decks.

Keith sets a new deck and a lighter out on the table.

STEW

You were waiting for that, weren’t you?

HUDSON

What’s the lighter for?

KEITH

Burn the old one.

HUDSON

(laughing)

This deck pissed you off that much? Let me keep one Ace of Spades.

Hudson takes the ace of spades out of the deck and hands it to Keith, who sets it on fire and throws it in a bowl.

Into the mess walks COOK, mid 30s. He holds a large pot, some hot dog buns and various sauces.

COOK

Franks are in people.

KEITH

I expected better than hot dogs from you, Cook.

COOK

Wait till you try Cook the Cook’s soon to be famous relish.

Two additional men, CLARK, 60, and DEEVERS, 30s, enter the mess. Deevers chews a stick of gum.

CLARK

Stop chewing that shit.

DEEVERS

Calms me down.

CLARK

Waste of muscle is what it is. You ought to try tobacco.

DEEVERS

I like my teeth.

Deevers turns to the crew.

DEEVERS

Listen up fellas. Inspector’s almost here. Herschel wants you all on deck.

KEITH

You are dragging us away from lunch for some pencil pusher?

DEEVERS

Watch it Keith. Our sponsor wants this to go smooth so we won’t have any more delays. Pack it in and lets get going.

Everyone gets up and leaves the mess.

KEITH

Dumb ass inspector.

Clark waits before he goes over to the hot dog, dabs his finger in the relish and tastes it.

EXT. PLATFORM DECK – DAY

Hudson, Keith, Cook, Stew, Deevers and Clark rush out to the helipad where Herschel and Edmund are waiting. Samuels in the helicopter coasts in for a landing.

Herschel looks over his crew.

HERSCHEL

Where the hell’s Cundy?

HUDSON

With his pet rock.

HERSCHEL

Christ.

Samuels lands the helicopter and steps out.

HUDSON

Ten points, Samuels.

SAMUELS

Eleven, Hudson.

Faheed steps out of the chopper, tripping slightly has he goes. Keith rolls his eyes.

HERSCHEL

Inspector Faheed Isa, I’m Herschel Lewis. Welcome to Antonio Bay Atlantic Platform 31.

FAHEED

(shaking Herschel’s hand)

Pleasure to be here.

HERSCHEL

You have already met Samuels our pilot. With me here is Edmunds, second mate and representative of Antonio Bay Atlantic. Deevers, emergency management. Clark, maintenance. Stew, our electrician. Cook the cook. Keith, welder. Hudson, crew manager. Understand this is just a partial crew. The rest of our staff and equipment will be arriving over the next few months.

FAHEED

Pleasure to meet you, Hudson.

HUDSON

(shaking Faheed’s hand)

Same.

FAHEED

I understand your geologist is already on board.

HERSCHEL

You’ll meet him in a minute. Let me show you the control tower.

Herschel and Faheed walk away with Samuels following after. Deevers goes for another stick of gum.

KEITH

Fuckin’ inspectors.

DEEVERS

Shh.

INT. CONTROL TOWER – DAY

Herschel enters the control tower with Faheed and Samuels. Michael is still at the radio.

HERSCHEL

This is Michael, our radio operator.

FAHEED

Hello Michael.

MICHAEL

Hello. Hershcel, I’ve got some chatter from the Coast Guard. Something is going on west of here.

FAHEED

Samuels spotted a vessel on the way here. That must be it.

HERSCHEL

What vessel?

FAHEED

Missing yacht, the Revenant. Papers said it was pirates, didn’t they?

MICHAEL

The current theory. We lost a cargo ship around here a few years back.

SAMUELS

The Carpenter was there too.

HERSCHEL

The what?

SAMUELS

Fishing trailer out of Nantucket. Knew the crew when I worked for the Coast Guard. Funny. They didn’t answer the radio hail.

HERSCHEL

You don’t think it was anything serious, do you?

SAMUELS

No. They were either already on the radio or too shitfaced to answer it. Coast Guard will sort it out when they get there.

HERSCHEL

Well, Mr. Isa, would you like to meet our geologist?

FAHEED

I would be delighted.

Herschel and Faheed leave the control tower.

INT. CUNDY’S QUARTERS – DAY

CUNDY, late 20s, sits at his desk with a magnifying glass and a urn like STONE ARTIFACT around the size of his forearm, adorned with markings. He cleans it, revealing the markings to be ancient Latin letters.

CUNDY

Oh my God!

HERSCHEL (o.s)

What are you doing, Cundy?

Cundy turns to see Herschel at his door.

CUNDY

Herschel, look. Letters. It has letters on it.

HERSCHEL

What did you hear a few minutes ago, Cundy?

CUNDY

A chopper.

Beat. Cundy’s face drops.

HERSCHEL

It doesn’t look good for you to miss the inspector’s arrival.

CUNDY

I apologize sir.

Herschel steps aside to reveal Faheed.

HERSCHEL

Cundy, this is inspector Faheed Isa. Mr. Isa, this is our geologist Nick Cundy. You two can talk about your find.

Herschel leaves the two alone.

INT. MESS HALL – DAY

Hudson, Keith, Stew, Clark, Deevers and Cook dish themselves out some hot dogs.

HUDSON

Man, Hersch was ready to blow a gasket at Cundy not being there.

KEITH

And not about that needle dick sticking his nose in here?

COOK

Alright, who dunked their finger in Cook the cook’s relish?

INT. CUNDY’S QUARTERS – DAY

Faheed looks over the artifact that Cundy was working on. Cundy shows him a series of photographs.

CUNDY

We found them at the drill site. They were laid out real neat in rows, like crops or headstones. They look to have been there for a few hundred years. Just now spotted the lettering on it. Don’t know what it says though.

FAHEED

This is Latin.

CUNDY

What?

FAHEED

Yes. This is ancient Latin Alphabet. I know a little. This says ‘Abyssus.’

CUNDY

What does it mean?

FAHEED

Deep.

INT. COAST GUARD VESSEL – DUSK

THOMAS, a coast guard worker in his late 30s pilots a small cost guard vessel while LOUISE, another cost guard worker loads a shotgun off to the side.

LOUISE

What’s your bet, Thomas?

THOMAS

Huh?

LOUISE

Come on. What’s your bet? Blew themselves up dynamite fishing, hit bad weather, pirates, or one em snapped and killed the rest?

THOMAS

Just load the damn gun, Louise.

EXT. REVENANT – DUSK

The Coast Guard vessel pulls up alongside the Revenant as Thomas and Louise board the yacht. Thomas has a shotgun and Louise has a flashlight.

THOMAS

Anybody there?

LOUISE

Deck’s wet.

THOMAS

Yeah. Boat’s been turned over in the water.

The two enter the main cabin and go below decks.

BELOW DECKS

It is chaos below decks. Every cabinet door thrown open and covered in gash marks. Louise kneels down and looks inside some of the cabins while Thomas shines his light on a red stain on the floor. He follows it to an axe in the wall.

THOMAS

Louise!

Louise looks up and goes over to investigate the axe.

DECK

Thomas and Louise come on deck.

LOUISE

Maybe they were running drugs. Got stopped by someone and-

THOMAS

You smell that?

LOUISE

Smells like rotting hamburger.

THOMAS

That ain’t hamburger.

The two look over to the hatch on the bow. They open and find a BADLY DECOMPOSED CORPSE with rotting skin, missing eyes, and stabs to its abdomen and neck.

LOUISE

What the hell happened here?

Thomas goes to the bow and shines his light on the nearby fishing vessel, the Carpenter.

THOMAS

Hello!

Beat.

LOUISE

Lets go check this one out.

CARPENTER DECK

Thomas and Louise get on the Carpenter’s deck. The main cabin door has been chopped down. They find large, monstrous footprints in blood.

THOMAS

This blood is fresh.

LOUISE

The hell made those tracks?

THOMAS

Lets take a look inside.

The two go inside the main cabin. Behind them, a BLUE GLOW appears in the water and moves towards the boat.

CABIN

Thomas goes below decks while Louise waits on deck. He turns as something exits the water and approaches him.

LOUISE

No. No! Thomas!

Louise throws his flashlight at the Monster.

MONSTER 1

Pecus!

LOUISE

No. No!

An INHUMAN WEBBED HAND reaches out and grabs Louise’s face, throwing him through the main cabin window!

Thomas spots the Monster and aims his gun at it. He is stabbed with a harpoon as the monster grabs his face. His agonized cries fill the dusk.

MONSTER 1

Fures. Fures!

INT. DRILLING CENTER – DUSK

Faheed walks around the drilling center with a clip board. He carefully looks over each piece of equipment, marking off his findings on the clip board. All are positive.

Faheed reaches a door labeled EMERGENCY EXIT. He looks through and finds a large EMERGENCY RAFT sitting there. He closes the door and checks off another mark on his pad.

INT. MESS HALL – DUSK

All of the crew, sans Herschel, Edmund and Michael, eat in the mess. Hudson, Keith, Stew and Cook relax over a game of four hand Pinochle.

KEITH

I’m liking this deck already.

Faheed enters the mess and sits down at a table where a salad is waiting for him. He is about to eat but stops when he notices SPIT on the salad. He gags and drops his fork.

DEEVERS

Something wrong inspector?

Hudson walks over to the table and looks into the salad.

HUDSON

Who did that?

No one answers. Keith looks down, indicating his guilt.

HUDSON

Who did that!?

Beat. Faheed pushes away the salad and leaves the mess hall.

EXT. OIL PLATFORM – DUSK

A faint blue light shines on the hose that links the oil platform to the ocean floor. The light follows the hose up to the surface, coming up just below the oil platform.

MONSTER 1

Fures.

It approaches one of the steel beams and climbs.

INT. CONTROL TOWER – DUSK

Michael, Herschel and Edmund gather around the radar screen, observing an approaching storm.

MICHAEL

Sorry I didn’t tell you earlier, Herschel. Forecast showed it missing us by over a hundred miles. Front just changed its course, right for us.

HERSCHEL

How long?

MICHAEL

Tomorrow. Thirteen hours of wind and rain.

HERSCHEL

Tell Samuels to fire up the chopper.

EXT. PLATFORM DECK – DUSK

Monster 1 makes its way across the deck, narrowly avoiding getting seen by Herschel as he leaves the control tower. It eyes the chopper.

INT. CUNDY’S QUARTERS – DUSK

Faheed sits at a desk while Cundy comes in with a large book of languages. Cundy leafs through it until he finds the section on Latin.

FAHEED

What are those?

CUNDY

Antonio Bay Atlantic’s way of postponing a translator. I’m going to use it on this. Just found another word. I think it is the last in the sequence. Mori.

FAHEED

(laughing)

How did someone like you end up working in a place like this?

CUNDY

It’s a good job if you like rocks.

A knock sounds on the door.

CUNDY

Come in.

Hudson opens the door.

HUDSON

Inspector, I need to talk.

FAHEED

I’m listening.

HUDSON

Cundy, you mind?

CUNDY

Kicking me out of my own room?

HUDSON

Beat it, rock boy.

Cundy leaves.

HUDSON

Look, with all the new regulations now it is harder for us to get work. This is our livelihood. I’m not excusing what happened but trying to explain it.

FAHEED

Hudson, if you’re worried about me writing this up, I won’t.

HUDSON

You won’t?

FAHEED

I only care if the rig is safe. But one of your crew is being an asshole, and this piece of hardware is dangerous. If anything goes wrong, it isn’t just the fish and birds who pay. It’s guys like you.

Hudson smiles.

HUDSON

Want to join us for a card game?

Herschel bursts in.

HERSCHEL

Sorry to interrupt, inspector. We have a storm coming in. It may be a good idea to get you back to shore.

EXT. PLATFORM DECK – DUSK

Samuels whistles as he walks up to the chopper. He stops when he sees the inside control panel has been destroyed.

INT. BELOW DECKS – DUSK

Monster 1 moves below decks, past the living quarters and mess hall before ending up in the kitchen.

KITCHEN

The monster creeps into the kitchen, gazing at the various deadly implements. It ducks into the walk in freezer when it hears voices, watching Herschel, Hudson and Faheed pass by.

HERSCHEL

Sorry to see you leave inspector.

FAHEED

It’s no trouble. I can file my report on the structure before flying back later this week.

MONSTER 1

Fures.

The monster leaves the kitchen and wanders the halls before entering the now empty mess hall.

MESS HALL

The monster finds a MAP OF THE RIG on the wall.

EXT. PLATFORM DECK – DUSK

Herschel, Faheed, and Hudson exit the lower decks and make their way up to the helipad. Samuels runs down to them.

SAMUELS

It’s the chopper.

The four run up to the chopper and look inside.

HUDSON

What the hell is this?

INT. LIVING QUARTERS – NIGHT

Montage – Crew woken up by the rig alarm.

EXT. OIL PLATFORM – DUSK

The entire crew stands gathered around the chopper as Stew steps out.

STEW

Shot.

HERSCHEL

No way to fix it?

STEW

We need spare parts from the mainland.

Herschel paces back and forth in front of his crew.

HERSCHEL

Which one of you was it?

CLARK

None of us have any reason to break the chopper.

Herschel glares at the crew.

HERSCHEL

Somebody did, and it will be criminally investigated and all involved will have their contract terminated, and be charged. You’re all confined to the mess until further notice.

Herschel storms away.

CUNDY

Looks like you get to see our emergency procedures inspector.

Cundy tips his head towards the massive approaching storm.

INT. CONTROL TOWER – DUSK

Herschel paces back and forth while Edmund sits down and looks through a book.

EDMUND

Six and a half million dollars.

MICHAEL

Someone’s losing their retirement plan.

Michael flips on his radio.

MICHAEL

This is Antonio Bay Atlantic Platform Number 31 calling the Coast Guard. Come in. Over.

RADIO VOICE

Copy Platform 31. What’s up? Over.

MICHAEL

Our chopper has been sabotaged beyond repair. We require air assistance. Over.

RADIO VOICE

Copy, Platform 31. Be advised we’ll be unable to offer air assistance at this time due to impending weather. Over.

MICHAEL

Coast Guard, that’s a negative. We have a civilian on board who must be evacuated. Over.

RADIO VOICE

Sorry Platform 31. We’ll be unable to aid until the weather clears. Over.

MICHAEL

Copy that Coast Guard. Will call in forty eight hours. Over and out.

Michael flips off the radio as Edmund pulls out a cell phone and dials a number.

MICHAEL

Great. We’re riding this one out.

EDMUND

Corporate will be pissed.

MICHAEL

Corporate is pissed about everything.

HERSCHEL

You guys don’t think we have been boarded, do you?

EDMUND

I don’t see how. Herschel, it was one of the crew. Give it a rest.

INT. MESS HALL – NIGHT

All of the crew, sans Herschel, Edmund and Michael, gather in the mess. Cundy sits by himself looking over the stone artifact. Keith, Hudson and Stew sit down to have a game.

CLARK

Somebody either goes to jail for this or we all get canned. So whoever the hell did it, start squealing.

Silence.

CLARK

Yeah. Figures.

KEITH

Will you stop looking over that rock?

CUNDY

Only thing to pass the time.

HUDSON

Inspector, interested in a game?

Faheed shrugs and sits down with them at the table. Left to right it is Keith, Hudson, Stew and Faheed.

FAHEED

Pinochle. Been a while.

KEITH

Want us to go easy on you?

FAHEED

I’ll manage.

HUDSON

Cut the deck, Keith.

Keith cuts the deck and Hudson deals out the cards.

HUDSON

I bid fifteen.

STEW

Pass.

FAHEED

Sixteen.

KEITH

Seventeen.

HUDSON

Pass.

FAHEED

Eighteen.

KEITH

Nineteen.

Keith looks satisfied with himself.

FAHEED

Twenty.

Beat.

KEITH

Twenty one.

FAHEED

Twenty two.

KEITH

Twenty three.

FAHEED

Twenty four.

Beat.

KEITH

You even know how to play this game?

FAHEED

Yes. Do you bid twenty five?

KEITH

No. I pass. Let’s see your meld.

FAHEED

Clubs are trump.

Faheed lays down an ace in each hand, a king and queen in clubs, a king and queen in diamonds, and a queen in hearts and spades.

HUDSON

All aces plus trump marriage, non trump marriage and sixty queens. That’s-

STEW

Twenty two meld. Two points and you make the bid.

Faheed lays down a jack of diamonds.

FAHEED

Pinochle. That makes twenty six.

STEW

Holy shit.

Keith looks at his hand, a Pinochle with several marriages, though not as impressive as Faheed’s.

Deevers goes to the coffee pot and finds it almost empty.

DEEVERS

Pot needs a refill, Cook.

COOK

Sure thing.

Clark goes over to the coffee pot and pours himself a cup. It is then he notices the map on the wall is gone.

CLARK

Now where the hell is that map?

Cook leaves the mess. He passes by Cundy who has finished translating another word. Mori.

It translates as Die.

INT. BELOW DECKS – NIGHT

The monster creeps down the corridor back towards the kitchen. It enters as Cook approaches.

KITCHEN

The visitor ducks into the freezer and hides just as Cook enters the kitchen behind it.

Cook puts water and beans into the coffee pot and waits, unaware someone watches him from the freezer.

LATER

The coffee finishes brewing. Cook grabs himself a cup to pour himself a drink, unaware the freezer door behind him has opened. A blue light reflects off Cook’s back.

MONSTER 1 

Fur.

Cook drops the cup and turns around. He panics and throws the pot and a kitchen knife at the monster before bolting out of the kitchen.

BELOW DECKS

Cook locks the door behind him and runs down the hall.

COOK

Hudson! Hudson!

Copyright-Watermark

Abyssus and all related content including characters and artwork are registered trademarks to Eric Hanson. Any unauthorized reproduction and distribution of written or related materials including concept art and illustrations depicted herein is strictly prohibited. All rights reserved.

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