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Air Force One

John Dolva

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'' Forks clanking against plates and

the din of a hundred conversations,

broken by...

The DING, DING, DING of a SPOON tapping against a wine glass.




Hundreds of men and women in formal evening wear sit at round

banquet tables. A HUSH falls over the guests as the DINGING

continues. All attention turns to the front table.

A rotund, silver haired-man in his late sixties rises and

sidles past U.S. and Russian flags up to the podium

microphone. He is STOLI PETROV, President of Russia.


(in Russian)

Thank you for joining us this evening.

Petrov's harsh Russian issues through the room. But over it

we hear a young woman's voice translating.


Tonight we are honored to have with

us a man of remarkable courage, who,

despite strong international



A translator's words ring in the earpiece of a handsome man

in his mid-forties. Worry lines crease his forehead and the

touch of gray at his temples attest to three very difficult

years in office.

This man is JAMES MARSHALL, and he is the PRESIDENT of the

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. He busily makes last minute changes

to his speech.


(V.0. earpiece)

Has chosen to join our fight against

tyranny in forging a new world

community. Ladies and gentlemen, I

give you the President of the United

States of America...

Mr. President.

Thunderous applause as Marshall rises and approaches the


At the back of the room, DOHERTY, a senior policy adviser

whispers to the President's Chief of Staff ED SHEPHERD...


Maybe we should consider running him

for re-election instead of the U.S.

The applause dies as Marshall begins to speak.


(in Russian with


Good evening and thank you. First I

would ask you to join me in a moment

of silence for the victims of the

Turkmenistan massacres.

The room remains silent a few beats. Most guests respectfully

bow their heads.

Marshall begins again, but this time in English. The young

woman translates simultaneously for the Russian audience.


As you know, three weeks ago American

Special Forces, in cooperation with

the Russian Republican Army, secured

the arrest of Turkmenistan's self-

proclaimed dictator, General Ivan

Stravanavitch, whose brutal sadistic

reign had given new meaning to the

word horror. I am proud to say our

operation was a success.

Applause from the audience. Marshall turns the page on his



And now, yesterday's biggest threat

to world peace... today awaits trial

for crimes against humanity.

During the applause, Marshall pulls a page from the speech,

folds it and slides it into his pocket. He removes his

glasses and looks out into the crowd. His tone becomes more


He's not reciting the speech anymore.


What we did here was important. We

finally pulled our heads out of the

sand, we finally stood up to the

brutality and said "We've had enough.

Every time we ignore these atrocities--

the rapes, the death squads, the

genocides- every time we negotiate

with these, these thugs to keep them

out of gig country and away from gig

families, every time we do this

we legitimize terror.

Terror is not a legitimate system of government. And to

those who commit the atrocities I say, we will no longer

tolerate, we will no longer negotiate, and we will no longer

be afraid. It's your turn to be afraid.

Applause rolls through the crowd.''

This is in 1997. It's strange how the starkness of a script version conveys something very different from the whole cinematic experience. Seeing it on big acreen is really just a memory. Still, widescreen versions are available. Google Air Force One movie posters and on one page its hard to find two the same. Anyway, with all that goes with movie production in parlaying with each of the bodily senses gives an entirely different feel to the movie. It's like that's the screenplay but some 80% of the movie is missing. Remember Rwanda, remember El Salvador, remember Nicaragua...it' still just talk. Meanwhile Extreme Prejudice reigns.

Edited by John Dolva
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