American Beauty: The Shooting Script
On a typical suburban street in a typical suburban town,there is an ordinary family living the American dream. But look closer. Lester Burnham's wife, Carolyn, regards him with contempt, his daughter, Jane, thinks he's a loser, and his boss is positioning him for the ax.
Captivated by Jane's sultry high school friend Angela, Lester decides to make a few changes in his mere existence—changes that are less mid-life crisis than a life reclaimed.The freer he gets, the happier he gets, which is even more maddening to his wife and daughter. Complicating matters, Lester finds an unexpected ally in Ricky, the teenage son of the new next-door neighbors, who sees life through a camera lens that has lately focused on Jane Burnham.
In pursuit of his new vision of the American dream, Lester is about to learn that the ultimate freedom comes at the ultimate price.
The 1999 winner of five Academy Awards®, including Best Picture and Best Original Screenplay, American Beauty boasts an accomplished cast led by two-time Academy Award® Best Actor winner Kevin Spacey (The Usual Suspects) and Oscar® nominee Annette Bening (The Grifters).The ensemble cast also includes Thora Birch (Ghost World),Wes Bentley (The Claim), Mena Suvari (American Pie),Peter Gallagher (Mr. Deeds), Allison Janney (NBC's The West Wing), Scott Bakula (NBC's Quantum Leap), Sam Robards (A.I.: Artificial Intelligence), and Chris Cooper (Adaptation).
American Beauty marks the feature film directorial debut of award-winning theater director Sam Mendes (The Blue Room, Cabaret). The film is produced by Dan Jinks (Nothing to Lose) and Bruce Cohen (The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas) from an original screenplay by Alan Ball (HBO's Six Feet Under). Stan Wlodkowski (One Hour Photo) and Alan Ball are the co-producers.
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JANE Oh shit, they're still here. Her POV: Lester and Carolyn stand at the edge of
the parking lot. LESTER Janie ! CAROLYN Hi! I really enjoyed that! She crosses
reluctantly toward her parents, followed by Angela. LESTER Congratulations ...
INT. BURNHAM HOUSE - FAMILY ROOM - LATER Jane and Angela are
watching MTV. We HEAR the back door open. JANE Oh, shit. They're home.
Quick, let's go up to my room. Jane switches off the TV. ANGELA I should say hi
to your dad.
BURNHAM HOUSE - GARAGE - CONTINUOUS Lester digs through stuff stored
on the shelves, searching for something as if his very life depended on it.
LESTER Shit. Shit! He yanks aside COLLEGE YEARBOOKS, a racquetball
What people are saying - Write a review
Review: American Beauty: The Shooting ScriptUser Review - Timothy - Goodreads
I put that I liked it because it was an enjoyable script to read (just as the film is even more enjoyable). It would have been better, though, if it had any director's notes or anything like that ... Read full review
Review: American Beauty: The Shooting ScriptUser Review - Maria Gillis - Goodreads
This is my new standard for screenwriting. If I can write a script like this, I will be very pleased with myself, no matter what attention it receives. Read full review