Screenplays & Treatments

Six screenplays followed by thirteen treatments

Screenplays

These six screenplays have been praised, severally and separately, by various agents, producers, directors and actors, but have not been sold or made into films.  Scripts and treatments available upon request to nick@nicholasdykes.com

Seventy Times Seven

Psychological drama set in the Channel Islands

A Roman Catholic priest on the island of Jersey, who had been sent to a concentration camp during the German occupation, recognises the brutal commandant of the camp who, driven by guilt, is revisiting the scenes of his crimes.  One of these was walling up Russian prisoners alive during the construction of Jersey’s German underground hospital.  The priest is torn between his natural human desire for justice and the strictures of his faith, which instruct him to forgive, ‘until seventy times seven’.  The story is complicated by an escaped murderer, whom the priest also sees, and by the priest’s inability to hand over a man to imprisonment after the hell he went through as a prisoner himself.  The story is partly based on true events.

Canucks

1970s comedy adventure

An unlikely duo – a tugboat skipper and a sophisticated city lawyer – help a Russian defector to escape from KGB pursuers during the Cold War.  The action, basically one long chase, both hair-raising and comical, takes place in and around Vancouver, British Columbia.  Optioned, but in the end not sold.

Booze

Comedy set in Devon

A young computer whizz kid, a girl in her twenties who does contract work for HM Customs and Revenue, is asked to keep an eye open for bootlegging during a holiday in her native Devon.  A series of accidents lead her to uncover a massive smuggling/tax evasion scheme run by an American who has inherited a British title and surrounded himself with a gaggle of amusing scoundrels.  The film is an affectionate harking back to Ealing comedies, but brought up to date.

The Bellringer

Family drama set in an English country town

A man in his forties, having made a fortune abroad, returns to his roots only to clash with his father, who treats him as if he were still a small boy and expects him to take his previous place on the bell-ringing team of which the father is captain.  The story is complicated by the tragic death of a teenage alcoholic but concludes happily when the returnee finds love.

Prevention

Detective mystery set in London

An overseas police officer, on attachment to Scotland Yard, strives to prevent a murder from happening.  His problem is that he has several suspects, all with possible reasons to kill, and senses that he has little time to work with.  He succeeds, but only at the very last second.  His complex relationship with his driver/sidekick, a frosty female constable, enlivens the story and contributes to a romantic ending.

Duval

Epic historical drama set in 17th century Canada

Duval is a free-spirited adventurer who finds himself condemned to death after a tavern brawl.  He avoids hanging by agreeing to become a colonist in New France.  Immediately, however, he comes into conflict with the expedition’s leader, Samuel Champlain, an unimaginative, yet ambitious and ruthless soldier.  Duval deserts the colony and is taken in by the Huron Indians, whose anarchic yet orderly existence he comes to admire greatly, so he writes a journal outlining plans for a new society combining French technology with Huron freedom.  On a visit to newly-founded Quebec to collect supplies, Duval tries to persuade Champlain to accept his ideas.  The conventional, royalist Champlain is appalled and has Duval executed for treason on largely trumped-up charges.  Partly based on true events.  Optioned but not sold.

Treatments

Outlines only.  Ideas for screenplays in various states of development, from one to twenty-six pages.  Available on request to nick@nicholasdykes.com.

Murphy, O’Toole and Grandma Griffith’s Gold

Comedy.  Two Chicagoans, an optimist and a pessimist,  encounter political and bureaucratic difficulties when one of them inherits a gold mine inWales.  The love interest is provided by naughty Welsh girl twins and some of the humour is based on not being able to tell them apart. (1 page)

The Conquest of Atemilitos

Wartime comedy/drama about German soldiers being seduced into pacifism when garrisoning a remote Greek island during WW Two. (5 pages)

The Vengeance of Socrates

College drama involving a clash of ideas and personalities, and the exposure of professorial cheating, in the philosophy department of a British redbrick university.  (26 pages)

Grimek

Comedy in which a peasant inventor from a Balkan backwater – the last communist country in Europe – comes to England to sell an agricultural machine he has invented.  An innocent abroad, he is unquenchably randy and causes comic mayhem at agricultural shows.  (1 page)

The Nearly Man

Drama about a young sportsman crippled by a medical mistake who fights his way back to a semblance of normal life with the help of a young woman physiotherapist.  (11 pages)

Devil’s Awa’ (with the exciseman)

A Scottish chemistry teacher discovers a way of aging whisky in days rather than the normal minimum of three years.  Rebuffed by the whisky industry, he sets up a pseudo water-sampling company and proceeds to manufacture and sell ‘Quisky’ all around the UK.  Rumbled, he flees to the US to start again. (1 page)

Tiger, Tiger

College drama, a variant of The Vengeance of Socrates.  A young woman philosopher raises academic hell in a university philosophy department.  A second, contrasting character is the lady head of the faculty.  The concept was worked up following a suggestion from a BBC producer that there was a need for scripts with strong female characters.  (6 pages)

Scamalot

Comedy.  A modern Casanova makes money and love while conning his way round the ‘modern’ Europe of Brussels directives.  (1 page)

El Niño

Drama.  An Argentinian, who had been a conscript soldier during the invasion of the Falklands, comes to England to avenge the death of a fellow conscript taken prisoner and murdered by British soldiers.  He kills one, but then is tracked down by the soldiers’ platoon commander, himself innocent of involvement, but now a policeman.   A violent final confrontation ends with them making peace.  (1 page)

Tanks

Farce.  A retired Welsh rugby player sets up an armoured car business.  With a crazy vet for a client, he races from Scotland to London, against time and villains, bringing a dog’s heart for transplant into a champion pooch at Cwufts, the other dog show.

(1 page)

Amazing Grace

Comedy.  Grace Mazely is brilliant and beautiful but has difficulty parting with an unwanted possession, her virginity, because she insists on being in love with whoever is to be ‘the one’yet seems to meet only bores, nerds or lotharios.  Eventually, she finds a potential lover over the Internet, a Chinese boy on the run, and flies to Hong Kong to rescue (and marry) him.  (1 page)

Warriors of Tsakhan

Fantasy/adventure.  A mythical hero fights to save his country from foreign invaders.  Loosely based on native heroes like Geronimo who resisted white invaders, except that in this story the hero wins.  Set in a land similar to Siberia, the story contrasts the peaceful cooperation of stateless societies with the ruthless arrogance of those with states.

Casanova

Musical.  Casanova is writing his memoirs and looks back over his life in a series of spoken recitations from what he is writing and songs based on them.  Could well be a theatre production.  (2 pages)