By 10 p.m., the preachers from the Church of the Ugly Shirts were still refusing to get off Shane's lawn.

A WALK TO REMEMBER

The Abridged Script

FADE IN:

INT. HIGH SCHOOL

SHANE WEST meets with PRINCIPAL DAVID ANDREWS.

PRINCIPAL DAVID ANDREWS

Young man, we have had enough of your PG-rated version of teenage rebellion. Because you made a dorky kid jump into some water, the football team is no longer able to pants him and drag him along the track, which will ruin morale for the rest of the season.

SHANE WEST

Is that really why you're upset with me? Or is it because I'm raking in all the 17-year-old pussy you thought you'd rake in?

PRINCIPAL DAVID ANDREWS

Erm... well... The point is, you're going to hang out with your saintly classmate Mandy Moore for the next few weeks and--

SHANE WEST

Turn her into the prom queen.

PRINCIPAL DAVID ANDREWS

What? No, SHE is going to turn YOU into a decent human being--

SHANE WEST

WHILE I turn her into the prom queen and, in the process, feel bad about deceiving her.

PRINCIPAL DAVID ANDREWS

Look, this could easily be that kind of movie considering everyone in it is a teen comedy stock character, but we are playing this dead fucking straight, okay? We've been written by a man who has no sense of humor or irony and we just have to live with that.

SHANE WEST

Sure, kind of how you have to live with the fact that I'm raking in--

PRINCIPAL DAVID ANDREWS

SHUT UP.

SHANE leaves to sit on a BUS, sit in a CLASSROOM, sit in a CAR, and sit in a HOUSE with MANDY MOORE as they work on a SCHOOL PLAY that he doesn't care about.

SHANE WEST

I don't take you seriously. You're a goody two-shoes who can't dress.

MANDY MOORE

I don't take you seriously, either. You're an ABC family drama version of a bad boy who will end up assistant-managing a RadioShack if he's lucky.

SHANE WEST

...Wow. I take you more seriously because I didn't make you cry.

MANDY MOORE

Well, there's #42 crossed off my bucket list: "Make Shane West take something seriously."

SHANE WEST

You're lucky you have an interest in astronomy and fairly decent snark capability. If you were actually one-dimensional, you wouldn't have a prayer.

MANDY MOORE

And there's #43: "Make Shane West pay me a compliment." At least, I think that was a compliment.

SHANE's friends--bitchy ex-girlfriend LAUREN GERMAN, white douchebag CLAYNE CRAWFORD, and black comic relief AL THOMPSON--appear.

SHANE WEST

Nope. You suck. Go die in a church donation box.

AL THOMPSON

DAMN!

SHANE's FRIENDS leave.

SHANE WEST

I, uh... meant that in a nice way?

MANDY MOORE

You are totally unworthy of being changed by my kind and gracious example. Christ be with you.

(leaves)

SHANE WEST

Oh, this is so confusing! I've spent my entire life being the guy my friends would like, but suddenly I want to be the guy this girl I barely know would like.

(frowns)

That's pretty weak motivation. Shouldn't I want to clean up my act for my own sake?

AUTHOR NICHOLAS SPARKS

No. Do it for the girl.

SHANE WEST

But we only just became acquainted--

AUTHOR NICHOLAS SPARKS

THE GIRL.

SHANE WEST

But I actually had a character going into--

AUTHOR NICHOLAS SPARKS

(grabs him by the shoulders and shakes him violently)

YOU DO NOT NEED MOTIVATION OR CHARACTER ANYMORE! YOU WILL MAKE ALL THE RIGHT CHOICES FOR THE REST OF THE MOVIE AND YOUR LIFE BECAUSE THERE IS A GIRL!!!

INT. AUDITORIUM

SHANE and MANDY perform in "WE COULDN'T GET THE RIGHTS TO AN ACTUAL PLAY SO ENJOY OUR SAD IMITATION OF JAZZ AGE SLANG."

SHANE WEST

Listen, doll. I'm not even gonna attempt a New York accent, see? I'm just gonna sit here while you blow my mind with your early 2000s bubblegum pop ballad voice, see--

MANDY removes her GRIM REAPER-LIKE HOODED CAPE to reveal a FABULOUS BLUE COCKTAIL DRESS.

SHANE WEST

--eeeeeeeeeeeee...

MANDY MOORE

(to tune of "Only Hope")

You act like you've not seen this before

It's the dress I'd have worn

In rehearsal each day for a week

Bet you love how the silk fits my form

Now you know I am more

Than a God-fearing theatre geek

Yes, our theme is "Love redeems"

But admit, deep down, we know

That it wouldn't work

We know it just wouldn't work

If I was

Less than crazy hot!

SHANE plants one on MANDY, which upsets LAUREN.

LAUREN GERMAN

Mandy, I don't approve of the guy I'm no longer dating kissing you in a romantic scene between two characters in a play. I'm going to badly Photoshop your head onto a picture from a Sears swimwear catalog and print out copies for every single person at school.

MANDY MOORE

WAAAAAAH!!!

She runs into SHANE's arms. He spots CLAYNE laughing and punches his STUPID DOUCHEY FACE.

SHANE WEST

That's it! I was already on the verge of dumping you as a friend for Mandy's sake, but now I'm dumping you as a friend for her sake AND because you think this malicious but poorly executed prank is actually funny!

CLAYNE CRAWFORD

You do that! You're going to miss me when I... oh, who are we kidding, I have no future.

AL THOMPSON

SHIT!

SHANE drives MANDY home.

SHANE WEST

Well, I've given you a closed-mouth kiss and some honorable personal violence. Dinner?

MANDY MOORE

Sounds good, but first you'll have to get through my father, Rev. Peter Coyote, who hates you.

SHANE goes to see REV. PETER.

SHANE WEST

Colossians 3:14: "And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity."

REV. PETER COYOTE

Matthew 5:28: "But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart."

SHANE WEST

John 7:24: "Stop judging by mere appearances, but instead judge correctly."

REV. PETER COYOTE

Ephesians 6:1: "Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right."

SHANE WEST

Exodus 26:16: "Ten cubits the length of a board, and a cubit and a half the breadth of one board."

REV. PETER COYOTE

Matthew 1:5: "And Salmon begat Booz of Rachab; and Booz begat Obed of Ruth; and Obed begat..."

(sighs)

Just keep it over the pants.

EXT. CAFETERIA TABLES SET UP IN SOMEONE'S BACKYARD

SHANE and MANDY start dating, much to the surprise of THE CHARACTERS WHO DON'T MATTER.

LAUREN GERMAN

(glares)

CLAYNE CRAWFORD

(breathes through mouth)

AL THOMPSON

(tap-dances)

MANDY MOORE

You know, we've done a lot of sitting and standing and driving and even dancing in this movie, but not much walking. Was there walking in the book?

SHANE WEST

Yeah, lots. This really should be called A List to Remember, now that I'm helping you check off items on that bucket list you already have.

MANDY MOORE

Well, there's a reason for that...

SHANE WEST

You have cancer.

MANDY MOORE

Yup.

SHANE WEST

And I am going to react to this with the face of someone who just dropped a big load of corn.

MANDY MOORE

The very biggest.

SHANE WEST

And where is this on your list?

MANDY MOORE

(unrolls scroll of paper)

Let's see... "Jerk audience tears in the most obvious way possible," that's #1, of course... "Progress through terminal illness while never actually looking ill," that's #59... "Inspire Shane West to make many grand gestures of devotion," #84. Full descriptions of acceptable grand gestures of devotion are in Appendix B.

SHANE WEST

Perfect.

He goes to see his estranged father, DR. DAVID LEE SMITH.

SHANE WEST

Listen, I haven't gotten over hating you for divorcing my mother, John Malkovich in a wig, but I need you to examine a cancer patient despite knowing nothing about her condition or history or the practice of oncology.

DR. DAVID LEE SMITH

Wait, what?

SHANE WEST

FINE! I STILL HATE YOU!

He draws an X next to the first GRAND GESTURE OF DEVOTION.

SHANE WEST

Okay, what else? "Learn to dance," that doesn't sound too hard... "Obtain apologies from jerkass friends," well, I was probably going to get those anyway... "Be the first of two different Sparks heroes to build a telescope"? I know he recycles his own work all the time, but...

AL THOMPSON

That is WACK!

INT. MANDY'S HOUSE

DR. DAVID pays for PRIVATE HOME CARE for MANDY and her PERFECT COMPLEXION. SHANE visits to read to her from her BOOK OF POPULAR INSPIRATIONAL FACEBOOK MEMES.

SHANE WEST

This really isn't how I imagined spending time in your bedroom, but I think I know how we can solve that. Marry me.

MANDY MOORE

What real-life, non-religious teenage boy would ask that?

SHANE WEST

None, which makes you wonder why Sparks aged down the real-life 30-something couple this is about.

MANDY MOORE

Well, marriage WOULD let me cross #1 off the list.

They have their WEDDING, officiated by REV. PETER.

REV. PETER COYOTE

Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today to join together this Under Armour model and this Mary Sue in holy matrimony, which is an honorable estate that is--

MANDY MOORE

SPEED IT UP, DAD, HOURS FROM DEATH HERE.

REV. PETER COYOTE

Right, right. You may now have implied, off-screen, Biblically appropriate sex with my daughter.

INT. FOUR YEARS LATER

SHANE goes to visit REV. PETER.

SHANE WEST

I came to tell you that I got into medical school. I wasn't really interested in being a doctor before, but Mandy was, and living her life as she would have lived it was on that grand gesture list.

REV. PETER COYOTE

Was there anything about me on that list?

SHANE WEST

Oh, yeah, #76: "Get my dad to burn his urine-colored short-sleeved button-down shirt."

REV. PETER COYOTE

It's in the dryer. There's a book of matches in the kitchen.

SHANE leaves and goes to stare at some WATER.

SHANE WEST

(voiceover)

"I'll never forget Mandy. I mean, marrying a girl at age 17 who died two months later isn't the sort of thing you forget, but I won't, just so you know. On the other hand, she'll be getting Golden Globe nominations in a few years, so you can forget her performance here, kind of like how they forgot to include walking in a movie called A Walk to Remember."

END

This script was made possible thanks to the support of Patrons like Ethan.

If you'd like to support the site, please check out our Patreon page where pledging can earn you access to an ad-free version of the site, early access to scripts, exclusive scripts, and other cool shit.


Discussion