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After Earth

AFTER EARTH

The Abridged Script

FADE IN:

EXT. THE WOODS, EARTH - AFTER

JADEN SMITH lies on the ground, attempting to recreate his performance as "background rock" from acting school.

JADEN SMITH (V.O.)

I've heard stories of Earth. A paradise, until we destroyed it with filthy man-made abominations like tsunamis and floods.

(pause)

Many years ago, due to all of the things humans did to destroy the planet, everyone was evacuated and brought to a new planet, which we had no reason to think wouldn't be subsequently destroyed in exactly the same way.

(pause)

We named it Nova Prime from the Latin "Nova" meaning "destructive nuclear explosion in a star" and "Prime" meaning "this movie takes place in the future."

(pause)

But it turns out, this planet was full of alien monsters. Despite the fact that we abandoned Earth because a few buildings burned down, we decided to stay on Nova Prime and fight the aliens, which could only detect you if you were afraid of them. My dad, Will Smith, is fearless, and therefore as invisible to them as I will be to Hollywood casting agents from this point on.

INT. NOVA PRIME - 3 DAYS EARLIER

RANGER CADET JADEN runs past the rest of his fellow cadets like a COMPLETE DOUCHECANOE. He meets with GLENN MORSHOWER, who hasn't been anything other than a government authority figure since 1990.

JADEN SMITH

Sir! My father returns home today and I have to be a Ranger, sir! Please promote me, sir, because I really want it and that's how military promotions work, sir!

GLENN MORSHOWER

Sorry Jaden, you're just not a good enough actor for the Rangers. Slanting your eyebrows to do a Bieber-esque smolder doesn't count as acting. Plus you're doing like 6 different accents all at once, every word you say makes me want to punch you in the face.

JADEN leaves in a huff and goes home. WILL SMITH arrives.

WILL SMITH

Initiate wife-greeting sequence. Sequence started. Hello wife. Sequence completed. Initiate son-greeting sequence. Sequence started. Hello son. Sequence completed. Shutdown.

JADEN SMITH

Dad, I appreciate your willingness to leave literally all of your trademark charm at the door so as not to upstage me, but I'm afraid I can't carry this whole thing by myself. Don't you think maybe you could do a couple "psssh"'s or "aww hell naw"'s?

WILL SMITH

Absolutely not. Jazzy Jeff gave his kid a Camaro for his birthday, so I'm giving you your very own movie, all to yourself.

JADEN SMITH

An M. Night Shyamalan movie, though?

WILL SMITH

It was a used Camaro, Jaden.

WILL SMITH, JADEN SMITH, and NOT JADA PINKETT SMITH have an uncomfortable family dinner, a relic of the 20th century that somehow finds a resurgence in popularity a thousand years later.

WILL SMITH

Wife, I have decided I have gotten too old to continue with my lucrative career. I wish for my son to follow in my footsteps, but he lacks the talent to do so unaided. As such, I want the two of us to work together on my next job so that I can guide him.

NOT JADA PINKETT SMITH

Subtle, Will.

WILL and JADEN board a SPACE SHIP that M. NIGHT SHYAMALAN tries really hard to justify being anywhere near EARTH when it crashes. It crashes.

JADEN SMITH walks through the wreckage and finds WILL SMITH!

JADEN SMITH

Dad! Even though I wasn't piloting the ship and in no way helped guide it safely to the ground, I have somehow survived this extremely deadly crash!

WILL SMITH

And despite being sucked out and falling hundreds of miles to the ground without a parachute, so have I!

JADEN SMITH

And absolutely nobody else! Except the monster that we had on the ship for no good reason!

WILL discovers his legs are broken and has JADEN search the wreckage only to find nothing, not even really the mangled corpses of the rest of the crew.

WILL SMITH

Damn. The small emergency beacon whose sole job it is to alert home in case there's a crash was damaged in the crash. Luckily, the entire ship's electrical system is working fine, so I'll be able to use this equipment to remotely connect to you and see what you see to guide you.

JADEN SMITH

So if the emergency beacon had been built into the ship instead of placed in a protective case, we'd be fine?

WILL SMITH

Correct. Now, you need to get to the tail end of the ship, which has another beacon in it, although there's no reason to suspect it still works since they're apparently made of papier-mâché and encased in aluminum foil.

JADEN SMITH

No problem. Since the tail broke off after you got sucked out and fell hundreds of miles to the ground without a parachute, it must be nearby.

WILL SMITH

It's about 100 kilometers away. Oh hey, we finally switched to the metric system in the future, neat.

EXT. THE WOODS, EARTH - AFTER

JADEN ventures out into the woods armed with only a GIANT MECHANICAL PENCIL.

WILL SMITH (O.S.)

Jaden, remember that I'll be able to see and hear everything you can, and I'll be in your ear the entire time, so you should be fine as long as you don't act like a complete pussy at the first sign of--

JADEN SMITH

Ahh! Space monkeys! I'm going to throw rocks at them and run away!

WILL SMITH (O.S.)

What? No, don't do any--

JADEN SMITH

Ahh! I got away from the monkeys but I'm worried the plants are filling the air with a deadly gas so I'm running from the air now!

WILL SMITH (O.S.)

Jaden, no, that's the stupidest thing I've ever heard, just take a moment and--

JADEN SMITH

Ahh! I got away from the air but there were space bugs and now I'm poisoned and losing consciousness!

WILL SMITH (O.S.)

L. Ron Tapdancing Hubbard... okay, just use the anti-venom kit and you'll be--

JADEN SMITH

Ahh! I dropped the anti-venom kit, and I can't see and my hands stopped working and my face is all puffed up like in that stupid Hitch movie!

WILL SMITH (O.S.)

Shit, is it too late to go all-in on your musical career instead of your acting one? Repeat after me: "I whip my hair back and forth I whip my hair back and forth."

JADEN SMITH

Okay I got the serum in but it's been a long day so I'm going to take a nap, wake me up when I'm an internationally beloved movie star, okay?

JADEN takes a nappy-poo while WILL SMITH phones his agent about MEN IN BLACK 4. After a bit, JADEN awakens.

WILL SMITH (O.S.)

Alright, listen. You have six canisters of oxygen or whatever, each of which will arbitrarily last exactly one stage, err, day. You must also move between "hot spots" to save your progress, err, keep warm. I'll be in your ear teaching you the controls, err, way to survive. And don't forget, the monster we brought is out there somewhere, so you'll have to face him as the final boss, err, final boss.

JADEN SMITH

Will this be a bonding experience that brings us closer together so that you stop acting like such a survivalist hardass who doesn't care about me as much as he cares about my achievements?

WILL SMITH (O.S.)

No, but it will make you more accomplished in those very achievements, thereby conforming to my expectations of you and allowing you to earn my love.

JADEN SMITH

Dad, I'm scared. Any chance you have some meaningless pablum to share with me that could pass for a motivational lesson?

WILL SMITH (O.S.)

Fear isn't real. Danger is real, but fear is just thetans in your body, the souls of ancient aliens burned in volcanoes by galactic dictator Xenu. Of course, fear is the the thing that the alien monsters can sense which leads them to eat you, so in any measurable sense fear is most definitely real. Basically the way to defeat the monsters is with apathy.

JADEN SMITH

You'd think we'd just all pop a couple Xanax and charge into battle.

JADEN walks around for a bit, then climbs for a bit, walks some more, climbs something larger, walks, sleeps, climbs, walks, and sleeps.

JADEN SMITH

Hey dad, would now be a good time to mention Moby Dick? It's a book, and books are for smart people.

WILL SMITH (O.S.)

Good idea, but we should move things forward so that the movie ends before people remember Shyamalan movies always have a twist since we don't have one. Get to the tail section asap.

JADEN SMITH

I'm so glad to learn that people still pronounce "asap" as a word a thousand years in the future.

WILL SMITH (O.S.)

Son, you need to move quickly, but be careful. Everything on this planet has evolved to kill humans.

JADEN SMITH

What? No they didn't, humans were at the top of the food chain.

WILL SMITH (O.S.)

Okay yeah but they evolved after that.

JADEN SMITH

How? There were no humans around, we all evacuated the planet, remember?

WILL SMITH (O.S.)

Okay but like they maybe evolved to kill us between like 2013 and the time we evacuated.

JADEN SMITH

I thought we left because we made the planet uninhabitable. Wouldn't the animals have evolved to survive the lack of oxygen and constant temperature shifts? You're telling me they also happened to evolve simultaneously to hunt us? All within the span of less than a thousand years?

WILL SMITH (O.S.)

Uh yeah and that's why we can't come back, because they're so deadly.

JADEN SMITH

The most deadly thing on the planet is the monster WE brought! From our new home planet! What imbecile came up with the story for this wet turd?

WILL SMITH (O.S.)

Aww, hell naw!

(smashes communicator)

JADEN, now on his own, makes a OXYGEN-BURNING CAMP FIRE while mentally replaying the conversation about how the planet doesn't have enough OXYGEN to breathe.

JADEN SMITH

Okay, just gotta think. What would dad do? Oh, he'd be a delightful and bankable actor, so that's out. I guess I'll just keep heading toward the tail section of -- L. RON HUBBARD, WHAT IS THAT?!

JADEN is suddenly attacked by SPACE CLOVERFIELD MONSTER!

JADEN SMITH

Suddenly I am capable of having no fear! This relates vaguely to my sister's death, I guess!

JADEN, now fearless, effortlessly dispatches the monster in the exact way that WILL SMITH once did.

JADEN SMITH

Welcome to After Earf!

JADEN acquires the TOY STARSHIP ENTERPRISE and radios for rescue.

INT. RESCUE SHIP

JADEN walks past a WALL OF SPONGES and approaches WILL, still alive somehow.

WILL SMITH

Son, you have earned my respect by doing what I tell you to do even when you can't hear me telling you to do it.

JADEN SMITH

Does this mean you're going to buy me another movie? I think for my next birthday I want a Brett Ratner.

WILL SMITH

I promise you son, if Shyamalan is the next Spielberg, you're the next Will Smith. You'll be the biggest movie star in the world or my name isn't...

(looks at script)

Holy fuck, "Cypher Raige"? My name was Cypher Raige this whole time? We're not even going to beat the magician heist movie, are we?

They AREN'T.

END