"Sweetheart, you do NOT have the ass to pull this off."


"Sweetheart, you do NOT have the ass to pull this off."

LADY BIRD

The Abridged Script

FADE IN:

EXT. MORE LIKE SUCKRAMENTO, AMIRITE?

SAOIRSE RONAN lives with her mother LAURIE METCALF in the hometown of DIRECTOR GRETA GERWIG but THIS TOTALLY ISN'T A BIOPIC OK?!

SAOIRSE RONAN

God, Mom, how dare you force me to live in a state that stifles my independent spirit?

LAURIE METCALF

OK, contempt for your birthplace I get. But all of California? Pretty sure there's room for a Creative™ somewhere around here.

SAOIRSE RONAN

Fuck that. I am subversive and non-conformist and I will go where subversive non-conformists go: New York City!

LAURIE METCALF

Oh, REAL original. You might have impressed me if you said you wanted to move to El Paso and open an artisanal chimichanga stand. Get over yourself, Saoirse.

SAOIRSE RONAN

Dammit, Mom! I told you to refer to me by the nickname of the presidential wife best known for planting flowers! I AM AN INDIMAVIDUAL!

She jumps out of the CAR in a burst of INDEPENDENT SUBVERSIVE NON-CONFORMIST FRUSTRATION and manages to break only her ARM instead of her FUCKING NECK.

LAURIE METCALF

(turns to camera)

Don't let this whiny brat happen to you.

(holds up intrauterine device)

Mirena.® Talk to your doctor.

INT. UPTIGHT CATHOLIC SCHOOL

SAOIRSE meets with SISTER LOIS SMITH.

SISTER LOIS SMITH

So you want to go to the East Coast for college, which you'll need financial aid to afford.

SAOIRSE RONAN

Yup. The East Coast is where indimaviduals go. The West Coast is for mindless shills.

RECENT WEST COAST TRANSPLANT JESS M.

(double middle finger)

SISTER LOIS SMITH

So how have you made yourself an attractive candidate for scholarships? Have you built up your list of extracurriculars?

SAOIRSE RONAN

Um... no.

SISTER LOIS SMITH

Have you been working to get your grades up?

SAOIRSE RONAN

Not... really.

SISTER LOIS SMITH

What do you want to do with your life besides not being your mom?

SAOIRSE RONAN

"Do?"

SISTER LOIS SMITH

Look, have you put ANY effort into getting what you want besides sitting around and demanding it?

SAOIRSE RONAN

Effort is for conformists.

SISTER LOIS SMITH

That's rich, coming from the heroine of every female coming-of-age story ever. I'm pretty sure you just read a Judy Blume novel and thought "Hey, I can shamelessly rip that off!"

SAOIRSE RONAN

I'll show you! I'll spend my senior year of high school in a way no heroine has EVER spent hers! Starting with dyeing my hair the color of uncooked beef!

EXT. SAOIRSE'S INDEPENDENT SUBVERSIVE NON-CONFORMIST INDIMAVIDUALISTIC SENIOR YEAR

SAOIRSE auditions for the SCHOOL MUSICAL with her best friend BEANIE FELDSTEIN.

SAOIRSE RONAN

Wait, Beanie, how did you get a more important role than me? You're so... so...

BEANIE FELDSTEIN

Unattractive, fat, and only here to make you look better despite apparently being smarter, more talented, and more committed to this show?

SAOIRSE RONAN

Yeah, that. What the hell?

Next, she dates LUCAS HEDGES, the first CUTE GUY to pay her any ATTENTION.

LUCAS HEDGES

Look, you're cool and all, but I'm actually gay. I know that's not fair to you, but I'm having a really hard time grappling with the truth of myself and I'm afraid my parents will disown me.

SAOIRSE RONAN

Wow, that's a real problem that's obviously causing you genuine psychological anguish aaaaaand back to me.

Next, she dumps BEANIE like a BAD DEL TACO SHIT to hang out with pretty and popular ODEYA RUSH.

SAOIRSE RONAN

I live in that big suburban house everyone covets, so you'll be my new BFF, right?

ODEYA RUSH

Sure.

SAOIRSE RONAN

GOD, OK, fine. I live in a crappy house in a crappy neighborhood. I am unworthy of you.

ODEYA RUSH

Yes, you are. But not because of the poor thing, just the lying bitch thing. You could at least have made it a lie that you could keep up for a week.

SAOIRSE RONAN

Perhaps this is some sort of karmic punishment for wanting something so mainstream as a big suburban house. Never again!

Next, she falls for INDEPENDENT SUBVERSIVE NON-CONFORMIST TIMOTHÉE CHALAMET.

TIMOTHÉE CHALAMET

Hey girl, you into guys who mindlessly quote Bush-era InfoWars while hanging out with pretty popular people?

SAOIRSE RONAN

Depends. Are you in a band?

TIMOTHÉE CHALAMET

There's no way my character WOULDN'T be in a band.

SAOIRSE RONAN

I'M YOURS.

TIMOTHÉE takes her VIRGINITY in a THOROUGHLY DISAPPOINTING FASHION.

SAOIRSE RONAN

Well, that sucked. Is THIS some sort of karmic punishment for wanting something so mainstream as a hot boyfriend? I'm so confused.

She goes to make up with BEANIE, who greets her in TEARS.

BEANIE FELDSTEIN

Of course I'll forgive you, even though you're a shit friend. Maybe you can help me through the emotional turmoil I'm feeling over that teacher who kind of flirted with me, and also my implied clinical depression-

SAOIRSE RONAN

BACK TO ME.

In between all this, she takes a DRIVER'S TEST, smokes POT, attends multiple SCHOOL DANCES, experiments with STRAW FEMINISM, and celebrates her 18TH BIRTHDAY by buying PORN.

SAOIRSE RONAN

Look, are you trying to make some sort of point about me being a much more average teenage girl than I'm willing to admit?

YUP.

SAOIRSE RONAN

Oh, I have got an angry LiveJournal entry with your name on it. Current mood: FUCK YOU.

INT. SAOIRSE'S CRAPPY HOUSE

SAOIRSE is accepted into a PERFECTLY GOOD UNIVERSITY.

SAOIRSE RONAN

Fuck UC fucking Davis! That's way too close to home to satisfy my independent subversive non-conformist need to get as far away as possible from my stable family support structure!

LAURIE METCALF

But not our money, right? And we barely have enough of that for Davis because your father just lost his low-paying job, so you better start thinking realistically and about someone other than yourself, young lady!

SAOIRSE RONAN

I HATE YOU AND YOUR VALID ARGUMENTS!

She is then accepted into an unnamed UNIVERSITY in New York City which is probably BARNARD COLLEGE, ALMA MATER OF THIS MOVIE'S DIRECTOR, ISN'T IT, WE'RE NOT STUPID, GRETA.

TRACY LETTS

Between this and the new mortgage I've taken out on the house, this should get you to New York. Hopefully you'll get a degree that will enable you to pay me back big time for this someday, or at least teach you how to fill out your own damn financial aid forms.

SAOIRSE RONAN

Oh my God, Dad, thank you so much! Why can't Mom accept my poorly thought-out ambitions as passively and uncritically as you?

TRACY LETTS

Because someone around here has to call you out for being the snarky little shit that you are.

SAOIRSE RONAN

Dad, at least three other people in this movie have called me out for being a snarky little shit, and I still haven't learned anything. What's really going on?

TRACY LETTS

(sighs)

She's a stupid meanyhead bitch who hates you for wanting more than she was able to give you. Is that what you want to hear?

SAOIRSE RONAN

Pretty much. Thanks.

INT. NEW YORK, NEW YORK, IT'S A HELL OF AN OBVIOUS TOWN

SAOIRSE reads a letter from LAURIE.

LAURIE METCALF

"Dear Saoirse: I was a damn fool to object to you going to New York based on financial constraints and the fact that you were a terrible student. Deep down, I just wanted you to stay exactly where you were and never have dreams. But now that you're in New York, I can live vicariously through you, which will totally make up for the fact your father still can't find a job. And I've realized something else: You may be a self-centered waste of labor pains, but so are all teenage girls, so I can't resent you too much. Love, Mom."

SAOIRSE RONAN

I'm touched. To honor the woman who put up with my shit for 18 years, I'm going to reclaim the name... Sayorsey? Soursey? Cersei?

LAURIE METCALF

"P.S. It's pronounced 'Seer-shuh,' dumbass."

SAOIRSE RONAN

Hmmm... not non-conformist enough. I'll tell people it rhymes with "inertia."

She (probably) grows up to write MOVIES that earn ONLY KIND OF EXPLICABLE CRITICAL ACCLAIM.

END

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