Professor Thorn: So, we have reached that magical time, the last drama project of the year. Now, upon graduation from Landen, many of you will go on to pursue your theatre dreams in Broadway, television, the cinema; or if you're really serious by becoming a waiter. This night of scenes is an important opportunity for all of you to, as we say in show business, suck up. Many of my New York heavy-weight theatre friends will be in attendance, so there's a lot more
riding on this evening than just a good grade...possibly a future.
(In Mike's imagination)
Professor Thorn: What can I say, he acts, he directs, he is theatre...Michael Seaver.
Mike: Well I always thought I was kind of good, but I didn't know I was this good. Kate, well ,what are you doing here dressed like that?
Kate: It's your dream, you tell me.
Professor Thorn: And so after two weeks, we will show it to you...
Kate: Mike, stop smiling.
Mike: Oh, sorry, right, I was day dreaming about what could happen...and what you'd be wearing when it did.
(Jason and Maggie are playing basketball)
Maggie: Alright...ooh...and in! And she scores again. It's not even a contest!
Jason: Yep, yep, yep. All in energy in the world out here, and when we get upstairs...zippo.
Maggie: Pardon me?
Jason: Nothing sweetheart.
Maggie: Oh, what was that score? I forgot.
Jason: The score...what's the point... The point is for us to get a little exercise, isn't it?
Maggie: Uh hu, that's why you are losing. Thirteen months younger and he folds like a tent.
Kate: You cheated!
Mike: I did not.
Kate: Let me see the coin.
Mike: Hey, look, I won the toss fair and square...
Jason: Remember what you and I used to flip coins over?
Maggie: Oh, do I! You always called pence.
Jason: I still do.
Mike: Look Kate, you're just being a sore loser.
Kate: Oh, yeah!
Mike: Fair is fair, Kate!
Kate: Fair is fair, Kate! Fair is fair, Kate!
Jason: Mike, Mike, you don't even try to explain when they're in a mood like that.
Jason: Not you honey. I'm talking about young women. No, I meant women without...
Maggie: Do you really wanna finish this sentence?
Maggie: OK, what's the deal, Mike?
Mike: Oh, don't worry guys. It was just a professional disagreement. I mean, see, Kate and I are both directing scenes for drama class, and we both want the same actress.
Jason: Oh, Kate's jealous, huh?
Mike: No Dad, I told you, this is professional. Don't you know anything about modern women?
Maggie: No he doesn't. What's so special about this actress?
Mike: Well, see, she's done sit-coms, and she's done real plays. Oh and Dad, OK, you know that commercial, with the girl and chimpanzee and they shave her legs?
Mike: Yes. She takes classes at Landen.
Jason: The chimp or the actress?
Mike: The actress! See, I don't want to blow my shot in front of these important New York theatre people. I mean when I come to work for them, I want them to remember me as the guy who acts, who directs, who is theatre.
Maggie: You risked all this on the flip of a coin!
Mike: What risk? I used a two headed coin.
Maggie: Mike, where did you get a two headed coin.
Mike: I borrowed it from Dad.
Jason: Ah, you can keep it, Mike. I won't be using it tonight.
Mike: Hi. I...I'm Mike Seaver.
Courtney: Oh? Hello, I'm...
Mike: Courtney Preston. I know you from the chimp commercial.
Courtney: Oh, God, are they still running that awful thing?
Mike: Yeah. And when they stop, I got it on tape.
Courtney: I'm surprised you remembered me, after all Zippy got the close-up.
Mike: Oh, hey, that's only 'cause they shaved him.
Courtney: Oh, you're very kind.
Mike: Oh, here have a seat. I'm gonna ask you something. See, I'm a directing this little scene for the big drama festival, and I was wondering like, if you weren't in a movie or something, maybe you could be in it.
Courtney: Oh, Mike, I'd love to...
Mike: Great! Great, so I'll meet you tomorrow at...
Courtney: ...But I can't.
Courtney: I was asked to be in another scene really early this morning. The director's name is Kate Mc...
Mike: McDonnell? Kate McDonnell! I don't believe this! I won you fair and square in that coin
Courtney: Are you a Kennedy?
Courtney: Well, it doesn't matter. I'm sorry Mike, but good luck with your play anyway.
Mike: Oh, thanks.
Courtney: You're doing a scene from Night of the Iguana? You're doing Tennessee Williams!
Mike: Well yeah...
Courtney: I have been dying to do something by Williams!
Mike: Oh, great, well then do it.
Courtney: But what do I tell Kate?
Mike: Tell Kate, she's a dirty, double-crossing, back-stabbing.... It doesn't matter if she's got great eyes, beautiful hair and a killer body.
Mike: Morning everybody and welcome to Night of the...Iguana. OK, before we start, I just wanna say a couple of things. First, thank you all for coming, especially you Courtney.
Courtney: Oh, Mike, come on.
Mike: Everyone have a seat and we'll read through the scene, OK? (In Mike's head) With lights down we can hear the surf. It's a quiet evening in Mexico, but passions run deep. Oh, she is so bad. Man, is she bad? And she's done sit-coms! Well I be none of the ones on ABC.
Courtney: Mike! Mike! That's the end of the scene. Do you wanna run it again from the top?
Mike: Err...No. (In his head) One more word and I'll shoot myself. (Spoken) I think everyone's worked pretty hard for the first day, so I'll see everybody tomorrow.
Courtney: Do you have any notes you want me to think about for tomorrow.
Mike: (In his head) Yeah, don't come back. (Spoken) No, no, no, I think it's going pretty good.
Courtney: 'Cause if you have concerns, don't hesitate to speak up.
Mike: (In his head) You stink, like a dead mackerel. (Spoken) No, I got nothing to say.
Courtney: OK, see you tomorrow.
Mike: OK, bye bye. (In his head) I wonder if that chimp is available.
Kate: Oh, excuse me.
Courtney: Oh, Kate, listen, I hope Mike explained to you how bad I felt about not doing your scene.
Kate: Don't give it a thought. I've been rehearsing in the room next door, and everything's
Courtney: That makes me feel better. Goodnight you guys.
Mike: Good night. Oh, Kate, I have made a terrible mistake.
Kate: You bet you have. You stole her from me, after I stole her from you fair and square you weasel.
Mike: Kate, she stinks!
Kate: She what?
Mike: She spent eight hours playing Night of the Iguana...and the Iguana won.
Kate: Get out of here.
Mike: I'm serious. You know, whoever comes to see this play is gonna think that I am in the
Kate: Mike, Courtney's a professional, for goodness' sake.
Mike: Well I just hope Tennessee Williams doesn't come to this production.
Kate: Mike, he's dead.
Mike: Then he's a lucky man.
Kate: Look ,it's the first day of rehearsal, maybe she's just holding back.
Mike: Yeah, well I hope she never lets it go.
Kate: So, she stinks, huh?
Mike: Big time! Fine, you can laugh all you want Kate, but I've got to fire her.
Kate: Mike, how can she be that bad and not know it?
Mike: I don't know. Wait a minute...wait a minute, that's a great idea! OK, I'll let her do the preview performance, she'll get booed off the stage and she'll quit...and then I'll have a week to replace her before the big show.
Kate: Isn't that kind of gutless.
Mike: Yeah, you're right, I should just fire her. OK, I'll tell you what I'll do; I'll flip a coin, right? Tails I fire her, heads I'm gutless. Kate, you look, I'm too nervous.
Kate: No, it's heads. Just like the other side.
Mike: (In his head) Yes! Yes! She's stinking up the joint. She's history, she'll realise and quit.
She's related to all those people, that's the only explanation.
Kate: I suppose I should blame myself for trusting a guy with a two-headed coin.
Mike: What are you talking about?
Kate: Oh, Kate, she's terrible. She played Night of the Iguana, and the iguana won.
Mike: What, you thought she was good?
Mike: This has got to be a dream. Wait a minute, this can't be a dream, you've got all your clothes on.
Kate: If what that girl did out there tonight is your idea of terrible, you have no place anywhere near a stage.
Courtney: Oh, Mike, they loved it! Congratulations!
Mike: Um...you had doubts?
Maggie: Oh, Mike, you can act, you can direct, you can do it all!
Jason: Hey, hey, hey, hey, that's my boy!
Mike: Hey, don't tell me you liked Courtney too.
Ben: My butt didn't go numb once!
Mike: OK, so, Mom, Dad, you can tell me; don't you think I had one major problem out there?
Jason: I don't know. All I could see was Courtney!
Maggie: Excuse us honey, we wanna go congratulate her too.
Mike: (In his head) Maybe I have no business near a stage.
Carol: Mike, it was wonderful! Brilliant.
Mike: Carol, why don't you just shoot me?
Carol: I mean it, I loved it, especially Courtney.
Mike: Look, if you don't have anything nasty to say, don't say anything at all.
Carol: What do you want me to say?
Mike: I want you to say the truth. She was terrible. You know, these people are absolutely nuts to think she was good!
Carol: I don't get it! You finally do a play where I don't have to lie to you and you don't wanna hear it.
Mike: What do you mean, lie?
Carol: All the times I had to tell you, you were good, and you stunk like a dead mackerel. And I would feel guilty about telling you that if you weren't so on top of it now.
Mike: (In his head) Oh, she's wrong. I am good, and I'm as sure of that as I am that Courtney was...
Professor Thorn: Best work, Mr. Seaver.
Mike: So, how's my favourite sister doing?
Carol: What do you want, Mike?
Mike: Err...Nothing, nothing Carol, just came in to talk. So, how's school been going lately?
Carol: I'm not in school this year, Mike. I haven't been going since June.
Mike: Oh, right, right, you got one of those...
Carol: You know, these brother-sister moments are really special to me, now get out!
Mike: Err...Carol, I just wanted to ask you something about...about what you said to me after the play tonight; it got me thinking.
Carol: The Berlin Wall crumbles! Mike thinks!
Mike: Just hold the jokes long enough to tell me what you really think of me as an actor.
Carol: Well that's gonna be tough if I can't use jokes.
Mike: Alright Carol, it's just with you...telling me that you've been lying to me all these years. It makes me think that I'm...
Carol: Not as good as you thought!
Carol: And maybe no good at all!
Carol: What do you know? Mr. Blowhole is having doubts...great!
Mike: Look, Carol, will you just tell me. Do I stink?
Mike: As an actor...as an actor, Carol. Come on, I don't even know if I'm good anymore, I don't even know what's good. I mean how does anybody know?
Carol: You just know. For instance, when it comes to intellect...well...
Mike: So, how do you know, you're well...
Carol: Very simple. I got straight A's.
Mike: Oh, come on, Carol, what the heck do those grades mean now?
Mike: Come on Carol, they mean absolutely didley in the real world; you know that.
Carol: Well I'm head of punctuation in a prominent publishing house!
Mike: Ooh, saving a lot of lives there, aren't you? Forget about the stupid grades and the
pointless job. I mean, do you have any real proof that you're good?
Mike: OK, you're worthless. Let's get back to my problems.
Carol: I need another piece of cake.
Mike: Oh, come on, Carol, I'm in pain here. Would you forget about your useless life!
Mike: Wait. Come on, Carol, help me.
Carol: I can't help anybody, I'm useless.
Maggie: Carol, don't eat in your room.
Carol: Don't worry, it will be gone before I get there.
Maggie: Mike, what's going on?
Mike: Oh, nothing, I just asked Carol, how do you know if you're good.
Jason: What's this about, Mike?
Mike: Well, OK, see it's just seeing everyone going ape chips over Courtney...
Maggie: Oh, she was wonderful. Now that is what acting is all about.
Mike: See, that's what scares me. I mean, I thought she stunk. Apparently I don't have a clue as to what acting's all about. Come on guys, how do I know if I'm good?
Jason: Well what you're wrestling with here, is an essential question that everybody asks.
Mike: Everybody wants to know if I'm good!
Jason: No, Mike; if they're good.
Mike: Well Dad, how does a person know if they're good? I mean, how do you know if you're a good journalist?
Maggie: Well Mike, I've been around. And I know how to put together a story, and my resume is quite impressive.
Mike: Come on, Mom, you've always complained about how you've worked at a dingy paper and a bozo TV station. I mean, you haven't even won any awards!
Maggie: Sure I have! I've won the working mother of the year award.
Mike: What did you call it?
Maggie: The m award.
Mike: The m award they had to give to somebody.
Maggie: Thanks, Mike.
Jason: Mike, come on, now awards aren't the only way that you know you're good. It's what your mom does that counts.
Mike: Oh, so you're saying that since you've been writing on your own you've sold a lot of articles!
Maggie: But I have had many encouraging no thank you letters. Some of the finest publications in the country don't wanna work with me.
Mike: So you guys are guessing just like I am.
Jason: Mike, your mother is good at what she does.
Mike: Dad, I'm not asking if she's good at what she does; I'm asking how do you know?
Maggie: Yeah, Jason, how?
Jason: OK. I'll tell you. I can tell you. It's err...as... Well in journalism, for instance, you have to...you look...it's like an onion. It's an onion. And if you peel the layers of journalism... Oh, well let me use psychiatry, my profession, to illustrate the facts. In my case, if I have helped the patient, I feel terrific; if I help a patient and they come to me and say I don't need to see
you any more, I'm fine.
Mike: Dad, people who are a little off tell you you're good, and you believe them?
Mike: Dad, think, what if who...who tell you that they're cured are just cutting you loose so they can find a good psychiatrist?
Jason: I am a good psychiatrist.
Mike: Dad...Dad come on, I mean, maybe the people who keep coming back, you're not helping and the one's who tell you they're cured are really trying to find somebody who can.
Jason: Just because I lose two patients to Doctor Harry the hot tub Strickland, does not mean...
Mike: Dad, I didn't mean to upset you.
Jason: Oh, OK, alright, I can tell you this, Mike; that only somebody who has ever asked himself that question has any chance of answering it.
Mike: Yeah. I just wish there was a way for a person to tell if he was really good.
Maggie: If you find it, let me know.
Mike: I don't belong here.
Professor Thorn: Not at this hour, you don't.
Mike: Ah...Professor Thorn. What are you doing here?
Professor Thorn: I have tenia. What's your excuse?
Mike: I'm trespassing. Can I ask you something?
Professor Thorn: What?
Mike: How do you know if you're good?
Professor Thorn: How do I know I'm good, how do you know you're good or how does one know one's good?
Mike: The last thing you said.
Professor Thorn: Ah, one of life's essential questions.
Mike: Ah, you sound just like my dad.
Professor Thorn: Your father's British!
Mike: No. no, no, no. Acting's weird, you know? I mean, it's not like...like being a tight-rope walker, where...where you know you're good if you don't die.
Professor Thorn: You can die in the theatre, believe me.
Mike: Come on Professor, I'm being serious. I mean, if you're an actor, how do you know if you even have the right to be on the stage?
Professor Thorn: Are you telling me, Mr. Seaver, that you have doubts about your abilities, hmm? You always struck me as being impervious to introspection.
Mike: As what?
Professor Thorn: As a confident dude.
Mike: Oh, oh, well I was...up till tonight.
Professor Thorn: Mr. Seaver, as I told you, your scene was the best of the evening; it showed you had an excellent grasp on what good theatre is.
Mike: Well, see, that's the problem, because I thought it stunk.
Professor Thorn: You did!
Professor Thorn: And here I am jealous of you...of what you've accomplished at your age, of what the future holds for you, and you thought the scene stunk.
Mike: w...w...wait a minute, how could you be jealous of me, you're the teacher.
Professor Thorn: Yeah, but thirty years ago, I was you...or at least I presumed I was. A young talented buck, ready to lick the world. I didn't, I'm here.
Mike: So your saying you don't like teaching drama. Professor Thorn: No, don't get me wrong. I love it. And how many people can make a living by
doing what they really love, but if I had another chance I'd... The point is, you have that chance.
Mike: Yeah, but how do I know if I'm good. Professor Thorn: Mike, the answer is not nearly so mystical as you imagine.
Mike: It's not?
Professor Thorn: Listen to what people have to tell you. But the trick is to be selective in the people you choose to listen to. I mean, choose people you respect, people of taste.
Mike: You mean, like critics.
Professor Thorn: I'm being serious Mr. Seaver.
Mike: Well then, how do I know who to listen to?
Professor Thorn: Years ago, I had a small part in a Joseph Pap production of Twelfth Night. Afterwards my dear sweet mother gushed all over me and told me I was wonderful...
Mike: And you believed it!
Professor Thorn: Certainly not. Daffy old bat. But I digress. Anyway, Mr. Pap himself spoke to me after a matinee. Now he didn't have to speak to me, but he chose to. He said, young man, you have promise. Now that Mr. Seaver I believed.
Mike: Professor Thorn.
Professor Thorn: Yes.
Mike: Am I any good at this?
Professor Thorn: Well Mr. Seaver, I'll say this...you have promise.
Professor Thorn: Yeah.
Mike: I do, don't I?
Professor Thorn: I believe I just said that.
Professor Thorn: Mr. Seaver...do you think I'm any good, as a teacher?
Mike: You're asking me?
Professor Thorn: Yes.
Mike: Well I'll say this...you have promise.
Professor Thorn: Thank you Mr. Seaver. All the world's a stage and all the men and women merely players. They have their exits and their entrances and one man in his time plays many parts.