THE BLIND SIDE Written by John Lee Hancock Based on the book The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game By Michael Lewis 04/28/09 1 OVER BLACK... 1 A distinctly SOUTHERN VOICE... LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE There's a moment of orderly silence before a football play begins. Players are in position, linemen are frozen, and anything's possible. Then, like a traffic accident, stuff begins to randomly collide. From the snap of the ball to the snap of the first bone is closer to four seconds than five. 2 EXT. FOOTBALL FIELD/GAME FOOTAGE - NIGHT 2 We're watching footage of the 1985 Redskins/Giants Monday Night Football game. Lots of angles, faces, knuckles as the two teams line up, Redskins on offense, for the snap of the ball. As the play begins -- LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE One Mississippi. Joe Theismann, the Redskins quarterback, takes the snap and hands off to his running back. JOE THEISMANN hands off to JOHN RIGGINS, who takes two steps forward, then turns and tosses the ball back'to Theismann. The footage PAUSES AND PLAYS like a coach breaking down film. LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE (CONT'D) Two Mississippi. It's a trick play, a flea flicker, and the running back tosses the ball back to the quarterback. HARRY CARSON, the Giants linebacker sees that Theismann has the ball back and races toward him. Theismann steps up and to the side and Carson flies past. LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE (CONT'D) Three Mississippi. Up to now the play's been defined by what the quarterback sees. It's about to be defined by what he doesn't. LAWRENCE TAYLOR carves a wide circle around the Redskins lineman trying to block him. (CONTINUED) 2 CONTINUED: 2 The blocker dives frantically. at Taylor's ankles, and misses. Taylor leaps, arms raised, filling the sky behind Theismann. The image FREEZES. LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE (CONT'D) Four Mississippi. Lawrence Taylor is the best defensive player in the NFL and has been from the time he stepped onto the field as a rookie. The frozen image of Taylor comes to life as he jackknifes Theismann's body. PLAYERS' FACES react to what they're seeing. Devastating. TAYLOR pops up from the pile and jumps around like a madman. LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE (CONT'D) He will also change the game of football as we know it. WE ARE WATCHING the MNF feed and hear the ANNOUNCER'S VOICES. FRANK GIFFORD (V.0.) Again, we'll look at it with the reverse angle one more time. And I suggest if your stomach is weak you just don't watch. LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE Joe Theissman never played another down of football. 3 TEAM PHOTO OF THE 2005 SEATTLE SEAHAWKS 3 LEIGH ANNE'S. VOICE Now, y'all would guess that more often than not the highest paid player on an NFL team is the quarterback. The camera finds MATT HASSELBECK, Seattle's quarterback. LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE (CONT'D) And you'd be right. What you probably don't know is that more often than not the second highest paid player is, thanks to Lawrence Taylor, a left tackle. The camera goes to WALTER JONES, Seattle's left tackle. (CONTINUED) 3 3 CONTINUED: 3 LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE (CONT'D) Because, as every housewife knows, the first check you write is for the mortgage and the second is for the insurance. The left tackle's job is to protect the quarterback from what he can't see coming. To protect his blind side. 4 SERIES OF SHOTS 4 "Famous" left tackles - Jonathan Ogden, Orlando Pace, Andre Gurode. Then we SEE SHOTS of their hands, feet, waists, etc., corresponding with --- LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE The ideal left tackle is big, but a lot of people are big. He is wide in the butt and massive in the thighs. He has long arms, giant hands and feet as quick as a hiccup. EXT. WEST MEMPHIS -- DAY 5 A street anchored by project housing and littered with broken down cars and ne'er-do-wells. Lots of folks out, milling about, but our focus is on A TEENAGER in the distance, moving TOWARD US in SLO-MO while everyone else is at normal speed. He's extremely large, six and a half feet, but he carefully steps instead of strutting. His name is MICHAEL OHER. LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE This is a rare and expensive combination the need for which can be traced to that Monday night game and Lawrence. Taylor. For on that day he not only altered Joe Theismann's life, but mine as well. As Michael continues toward us he begins to go OUT OF FOCUS -- INVESTIGATOR'S VOICE (V.O.) Mr. Oher, do you know why I'm here? (NO RESPONSE) Mr. Oher?... MICHAEL (V.0.) (CONTINUED) 4 5 CONTINUED: 5 INVESTIGATOR'S.VOICE (V.O.) Do you know, do you understand why I'm here? MICHAEL (V.0.) To... investigate. INVESTIGATOR'S VOICE (V.0.) Yes. To investigate. I'm here to investigate your odd... predicament. 6 INT. NONDESCRIPT ROOM - DAY 6 Looks like a government office. Not much more than a desk on either side of which sit INVESTIGATOR GRANGER, an African- American woman in a business suit, and Michael Oher. Michael slumps a bit, eyes the ground and rubs his hands on his knees - a nervous trait of his. GRANGER Do you find it odd? Your predicament? (NO RESPONSE) Michael?... MICHAEL Iono [I don't know]... Investigator Granger sifts through her briefcase, pulls out files, documents - a good bit of evidence for whatever trouble Michael is in. She sits back, stares at Michael, as if trying to figure him out. Michael can't meet her gaze. He looks out the window, rubs his knees some more. MICHAEL (CONT'D) Can I... can I leave now? GRANGER (WITH FINALITY) No. You can't. 7 INT. ANCIENT FORD TAURUS _ DAY 7 SUPERSCRIPT: TWO YEARS BEFORE Michael sits in the back seat, behind STEVEN HAMILTON, 14, and his father, BIG TONY, who drives. (CONTINUED) 5 7 CONTINUED: 7 Not a word is spoken as they drive through the streets of WEST MEMPHIS - poverty ridden. 8 EXT. HIGHWAY - DAY The Taurus exits into -- 9 EXT. SOMEWHAT NICER AREA OF TOWN.- DAY 9 The Taurus passes an endless supply of churches and strip joints, all of which Michael's eyes take in. 10 EXT. EAST MEMPHIS - INT/EXT TAURUS - DAY (LATER) 10 We've gone from slums to nice neighborhoods - fathers and sons play baseball, kids tend lemonade stands, sprinklers keep the grass emerald green. Michael's face tells us he's never seen anything like this. 11 EXT. WINGATE CHRISTIAN SCHOOL -- DAY 11 The Taurus enters the parking lot filled with nice cars. A12 A12 INT. SCHOOL HALLWAY -- DAY Big Tony strides down the almost empty hallway, spots a door. 12 INT. WINGATE - COTTON'S OFFICE - DAY 12 BERT COTTON, football coach, cleans off his desk, ready to leave for the day. Big Tony knocks at the door. BIG TONY They say you the coach. Cotton eyes Tony, offers a hand. COTTON Bert Cotton. BIG TONY Tony Hamilton, but everybody call me Big Tony. COTTON What can I do for you, Tony? 13 EXT. WINGATE - SCHOOL GROUNDS - DAY 13 Steven and Michael eye the freshly painted buildings, the flowers, the new playground jungle gyms and outdoor hoops. (CONTINUED) 6 13 CONTINUED: 13 STEVEN Sure is pretty, huh, Big Mike? Mike doesn't answer, just takes it all in. Steven sees and opens a container filled to the brim with balls - footballs, basketballs, four square balls. STEVEN (CONT'D) Not even locked! MICHAEL White people are crazy. 14 INT. WINGATE - COTTON'S OFFICE - DAY 14 Big Tony and Cotton are mid-discussion --- BIG TONY You see I promised my mama Boo, on her deathbed, that I would get Steven outta public and into a church school. COTTON I appreciate that but I'm not involved with admissions. BIG TONY I figured I'd come to you; seeing as you might need some players. COTTON What sport does he play? BIG TONY Anything with a ball. Good, too. He has Cotton's attention for a moment, then it passes... COTTON Classes start in a week. It'd have to be for next semester. BIG TONY I know what you're thinking, Coach, but I got money. I'm a mechanic at Wilson's Auto t'other side of town. (ANOTHER TRY) What if someone drops out or moves? Could they get in then? (CONTINUED) 7 14 CONTINUED: 14 COTTON "They?" You only mentioned one son. BIG TONY Steven, yessir, but I brought another boy along. COTTON Another boy? BIG TONY Yeah, Big Mike. He stays on our couch sometimes. It's a bad deal. His mama's on the crack pipe and he ain't got nobody. He just wanted to come along with us today. COTTON Would... Big Mike be an applicant as well? BIG TONY Yeah, sure, why not. Cotton sighs, considers what to do. COTTON They'd have to fill out applications and make an appointment for interviews. BIG TONY I was hopin' you might just interview 'em now. COTTON They're here? Big Tony points out the.window to the playground where Steven and Michael are playing one on one basketball. BIG TONY The little ones Steven and the big ONE'S -- COTTON Big Mike. BIG TONY Yeah. That's right. INTERCUT WITH: 8 15 EXT. WINGATE - PLAYGROUND - DAY 15 For a boy his size Michael can really move. He dribbles, fakes left, then falls away, making a long three pointer. Cotton's eyes get a little wider as he watches -- Michael dribbles the ball between his legs, behind his back and jumps high, slamming the ball through the hoop. Big men aren't supposed to move like this. Cotton's lips are almost quivering -- COTTON Mother of God... 16 INT. ADMINISTRATION OFFICE BOARD ROOM - DAY 16 The Board of Admissions, eight or so men and women, are seated around a large conference table. By himself, at one end, sits Bert Cotton. COTTON Are there spots available or not? PAUL SANDSTROM, Principal, taps his fingers before... SANDSTROM Technically, yes, in both grades. But we have a greater responsibility than just filling classrooms. Steven Hamilton's paperwork looks acceptable and I believe he would be capable of succeeding here but the other kid -- Sandstrom looks through papers for the name. COTTON Big Mike. SANDSTROM Michael Oher gives us no reason to believe, based on his record, that he would be successful here. COTTON How bad could it be? Another board member, MRS. SMITH, pores over Michael's file, which is a mess. She finds facts and lays them out --- (CONTINUED) 9 16 CONTINUED: 16 MRS. SMITH We're not sure exactly how old he is due to lack of records. He has a measured IQ of 80. That's 6th percentile. He's been enrolled in seven different institutions, including a gap of eighteen months around the age of ten when he apparently didn't attend school at all. He repeated first grade as well as second, there's no record of attendance in third, and in fourth grade -- COTTON So they moved him ahead without going to third grade. That says something. MRS. SMITH (IGNORING COTTON) His attendance records are abysmal and his grade point average begins with a zero. Zero-point-six- Silence around the room. MRS. BOSWELL, a board member and science teacher, looks to the others. MRS. BOSWELL Everyone passed him along - gave him D's so they could hand their problem off to the next school. COTTON Brave kid. (off their confusion) For wanting to come here. For wanting a quality education. An education denied him by the poor quality of the schools he's attended. Most kids with his background wouldn't come within two hundred miles of this place. MRS. SMITH Coach Cotton, we understand your interest in the young man's athletic abilities. SANDSTROM He wouldn't be able to play until he got his grades up anyway. (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Green Revision - 04/28/09 10 16 CONTINUED: 16 COTTON Forget sports! Look at the wall. He points to the crest on the wall. Beneath it: "NEIGHBORLY, ACADEMIC, CHRISTIAN". COTTON (CONT'D) Christian. We either take that seriously or we paint over it. You don't admit Michael Oher for sports, you admit him because it's the right thing to do. Their faces announce that he's made a point. 17 EXT. WINGATE - DAY 17 First day of class. Students, mostly blonde-haired and blue- eyed, wearing crisply laundered Abercrombie and Fitch, carry their backpacks through the school's arch and converse with friends they haven't seen over the summer. Michael ENTERS FRAME. Fills it up in fact. He stares at the arch. Beneath the school name we read "WITH MEN THIS IS. POSSIBLE, WITH GOD ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE". Michael takes a deep breath and enters. He carries his "school bag" - a plastic grocery sack. 18 EXT. WINGATE - CAMPUS - DAY 18 Just as before, Michael moves at A DIFFERENT SPEED than those around him. Makes sense because he is different. Not only the color of his skin but his size, his clothes (short pants and T-shirt), his eyes taking in the pavement - all point to the fact that he doesn't belong here. Small children from kindergarten and first grade give him a wide, cautious berth. He's noticed and ogled by everyone. 19 INT. WINGATE - MRS. BOSWELL'S CLASS - DAY 19 It's Mrs. Boswell's biology class and she's writing on the board in front of a full classroom when Michael enters. He pauses and all eyes go to him. Mrs. Boswell does her best to stifle a gasp as she first lays eyes on him. Then... MRS. BOSWELL Class, this is Mike Oher and he's new here so I expect you all to make him feel welcome. (with a warm smile) Mike, take any empty seat. (CONTINUED) 11 19 CONTINUED: 19 She urges him with a nod. Michael walks back and sits in the corner, looking terrified. He barely fits in the seat. Mrs. Boswell hands out a stack of papers to each row. As students pass them back to others... MRS. BOSWELL (CONT'D) This is a quiz based on the information you learned last year in your science curriculum. (OVER GROANS) Don't worry. It won't be graded. I just want to see how much of the information we need to hit again. Just answer whatever you know. The student in front of Michael hands a sheet back to him and eyes the size of his feet. The students start to work while Michael stares at the sheet like it's written in Greek. Mrs. Boswell watches him for a few seconds before turning back to her work. 20 INT. WINGATE - HALLWAY - DAY (LATER) 20 A bell RINGS and kids leave classrooms. 21 INT. WINGATE - MRS. BOSWELL'S CLASS - DAY 21 Michael sits alone while Mrs. Boswell collects the last of the papers. She walks over to Michael, looks down at his sheet. Nothing filled in, just his name scrawled at the top. She tries to decide how to deal with this then opts for -- MRS. BOSWELL It's okay. MICHAEL Can I leave now? She nods and watches him stand and walk away. She glances down at the sheet, turns it over and sees... A DRAWING on the back - a boat on an ocean. On the boat is a single, stick figure person. It's sweet but looks like a third grader drew it. 12 22 INT. BIG TONY'S APARTMENT - NIGHT 22 Michael lies on a tattered sofa. The lights are out but Michael's eyes are open, staring at the light emanating from beneath a closed bedroom door. We hear voices... WOMAN'S VOICE (O.S) Why he gotta always stay here? BIG TONY'S VOICE (0.S) Ain't got nowhere else. WOMAN'S VOICE (O.S) And how's that your problem? You the Red Cross all of a sudden? Michael tries to shut his eyes. 23 23 EXT. WINGATE - PARKING LOT - DAY School is out. Steven walks up to Michael... STEVEN Hey, Big Mike, um... my Pops' girlfriend... she don't really want you to stay with us no more. Big Tony's Taurus pulls into the lot. STEVEN (CONT'D) We can still give you rides if you want? MICHAEL Naw, it's aright. Steven gets in the Taurus. Michael watches it drive away. 24 24 INT. WINGATE - GYMNASIUM FOYER - NIGHT A girl's volleyball game is in progress in the bg. As latecomers move en masse for entry into the gym, a small pretty lady on a cell phone moves.against the crowd; a salmon on a mission. This is LEIGH ANNE Tuohy. And she's pissed. LEIGH ANNE (on cell phone) I don't care if Patrick Ramsey did approve the chair. He's an NFL quarterback not Martha frickin' Stewart. (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Green Revision - 04/28/09 13 24 CONTINUED: 24 She arrives at the concession stand and waits impatiently. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) There's a difference between Bunny Williams and Lazee-boy. (TO VENDOR) Three large popcorns and two large diets. (INTO CELL) When MTV Cribs comes to his house he'll be showing off his home theatre but all I'm gonna see is a brown Barca-lounger. I'm his designer, my name's on it. Deliver what I ordered!!! She hangs up angry, spots a friend nearby and her frown turns into a smile that could light up a cave. LEIGH ANNE (CONT`D) Hi, sweetie! We're on the Kidspace committee together, aren't we?! It'll be a hoot! 25 INT. WINGATE - GYMNASIUM -- NIGHT 25 Leigh Anne's husband SEAN TUOHY, handsome, confidant, and their 10-year-old son, SJ, sit, watching the game. During a time out, Sean eyes the crowd, sees something odd. In the upper corner of the gym sits Michael, by himself, rubbing his knees. Others around him, all white, have moved away. He's a very large island in the lily white gym. SEAN S.J., you know that kid? SJ What kid? SEAN Black kid. Up in the corner. SI Be goes to high school here. His name is Big something... Big Mike. Sean eyes Michael suspiciously. (CONTINUED) 14 25 CONTINUED: 25 SEAN He look like a volleyball fan to you? Leigh Anne, loaded up with refreshments, makes her way up the stands to her family. She has a nod, a smile, a bon mot, for everyone she passes. As she sits... LEIGH ANNE What'd I miss? SEAN Collins got a dig. SI It's girl's volleyball, Mom. You didn't miss anything. Leigh Anne gives him a look then stands and shouts -- LEIGH ANNE Collins! Move your feet! ON THE COURT - COLLINS TUOHY, a beautiful 16-year-old, sighs and gives her mother a look - "Don't embarrass me!" 26 INT. WINGATE - GYMNASIUM - NIGHT (LATER) 26 The scoreboard tells us that the game is over. Fans file out. The Tuohy family waits in a group as the volleyball team exits the court. LEIGH ANNE Collins, we'll wait outside. And don't double condition in the shower - you still have homework! COLLINS I'm going over to Cannon's house to study. SI Can I go.to the Johnson's for dinner? They invited me. LEIGH ANNE What's so awful about our house? Sean smiles, shakes his head as SJ and Collins leave. (CONTINUED) 15 26 CONTINUED: 26 Sean's eyes go to the upper stands where he sees Michael, alone, walking slowly, then bending down, picking something up, taking a few more steps and repeating the process. Picking up left-over bags of popcorn. Sean considers this for a second before leaving. 27 INT. WINGATE - TEACHER'S LOUNGE - DAY 27 Teachers drink stale coffee and chew on donuts. FIRST TEACHER (BOB) Well, the big guy's been here a month and he ain't cutting it in my class. SECOND TEACHER (APRIL) Why would Admissions do this? It's not fair to us or the boy. THIRD TEACHER (GLENDA) Just setting him up to fail. BOB I don't think he has any idea what I'm teaching. GLENDA And how would you know if he did? He won't even talk. Mrs. Boswell can't contain herself. MRS. BOSWELL He writes. APRIL His name. Barely. Mrs. Boswell goes to'her purse, pulls out a crumpled page. MRS. BOSWELL He threw this in the trash can. (reads from the page) "I look and I see white everywhere: white walls, white floors, and a lot of white people. The teachers do not know I have no idea of anything they are talking about. I do not want to listen to anyone, especially the teachers. (MORE) (CONTINUED) 16 27 CONTINUED: 27 MRS. BOSWELL (CONT'D) They are giving homework and expecting me to do the problems on my own. I have never done homework in my life. I go to the bathroom, look in the mirror and say, "This is not Michael Oher." (a pause for effect) He entitled it "White Walls." The room is dead quiet. BOB How's the spelling? Mrs. Boswell stuffs the page back in her purse and leaves. 28 INT. WINGATE - CAFETERIA -- DAY 28 Sean and Coach Cotton sip coffee while all around them students eat their lunches. They are looking at Michael, who sits by himself without a tray in front of him. COTTON If he makes his grades he'll be eligible in the spring. SEAN If he makes his grades. COTTON But boy-hidey, just look at him. Cotton is admiring Michael's size but Sean sees something else. He stands, walks over to Michael, who barely looks up. SEAN What did you eat for lunch today? MICHAEL Here in the cafeteria. SEAN I didn't ask where you ate, I asked what you ate. MICHAEL A few things. SEAN Do you need some money? For lunch? (CONTINUED) 17 28 CONTINUED: 28 MICHAEL I don't need any. Sean walks back over to Coach Cotton. SEAN Buy him a semester lunch pass and put it on my bill. (off Cotton's look) He's hungry. COTTON You could tell that by looking at him? SEAN - I didn't grow up all that different from him. At public school they give you free lunch, Bert. And when food is finite, you'd be surprised how much time you can spend thinking about it.. 29 INT. WINGATE - MRS. BOSWELL'S CLASS - DAY 29 Mrs. Boswell distributes a test to the class. MRS. BOSWELL You'll have one hour. If you finish early put it on my desk and sit quietly. She looks at the class as they begin to work, then sees Michael just staring at his test. She sighs, makes a decision, rises and walks over. MRS. BOSWELL (CONT`D) Mike, come with me. 30 INT. WINGATE - SMALL ADJACENT ROOM - DAY 30 Filled with supplies and a small desk. Mrs. Boswell points and he sits. MRS. BOSWELL You can take the test back here away from everybody else. I'll sit in there so if there's anything you don't understand you can ask. (CONTINUED) 18 30 CONTINUED: 30 Michael's eyes go to the page in front of him. He rubs his hands on his knees and stares. Mrs. Boswell waits a beat then scoots her chair over next to him. MRS. BOSWELL (CONT'D) Mike, how about I ask the questions and you tell me the answers or as much as you know. She looks at his hands - huge next to hers - then reads: MRS. BOSWELL (CONT'D) Protozoans are classified based on: a) how they get their food, b) how they reproduce, c) how they move, or d) both a and c. Michael just stares. After a long moment MICHAEL Iono... MRS. BOSWELL Just try. Ask questions if you don't understand. But still Michael stares at the page. The look on her face says she's about to give up when He lifts his eyes to her and points to -- -- the question on the test - specifically to the word "classified". MRS. BOSWELL (CONT'D) "Classified". It means how things are grouped together. MICHAEL Like our "class"? MRS. BOSWELL Exactly. This science course is classified based on what grade y'all are in. Eleventh. Michael nods understanding. MRS. BOSWELL (CONT'D) Okay, Mike, you ready to answer the question? (CONTINUED) 19 30 CONTINUED: 30 He looks at her. 31 INT. WINGATE - TEACHER'S LOUNGE - DAY 31 Same group of teachers. Mrs. Boswell bursts through the door, holding the test. MRS. BOSWELL He knows it! BOB Who knows it and what does he know? MRS. BOSWELL The material. Michael Oher. I gave him this test verbally. She holds up the test -- marked with a large red "C". APRIL On how big a curve? MRS. BOSWELL He's been listening the whole time. It's amazing what he's absorbed. And, trust me, he's listening to you, too. Okay, so his reading level is low and he has no idea how to learn in a classroom, but... (makes her point) I'm not saying he's going to pass but Big Mike is not stupid. 32 EXT. WINGATE - CAMPUS - DAY 32 School is out and Michael walks among the kids of all shapes and sizes. Two little Kindergarten girls'try and swing themselves. Michael stops nearby, watching them. MICHAEL They're stuck, not sure if they should talk to this "stranger". They jump off the swings and run away. SI (OS) Smile at 'em. Michael turns to see Si nearby, watching him. (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Green Revision - 04/28/09 20 32 CONTINUED: 32 SJ (CONT'D) It lets them know you're their friend. Did you know that even little kids born blind smile? They've never seen anyone do it before but they smile anyway. So it's universal. That's why it works. Not that you should fake it or anything... You're Big Mike, right? Sean holds. out a fist for Mike to "knock" and the two walk toward the school entrance. SJ (CONT'D) I'm Sean, but everyone calls me Si -- that's for Sean Junior because my father's name is Sean. Sean Tuohy. He was a basketball star at Ole Miss, point guard, and now he owns like a million Taco Bells. Leigh Anne's car pulls up to the pick up/drop off and Si starts toward it. SJ (CONT'D) Manana'. Michael smiles at the kid, who smiles back. 33 INT. LEIGH ANNE'S CAR - DAY 33 Leigh Anne notices Michael as she drives past him. LEIGH ANNE Who's that SJ? SI Big Mike. LEIGH ANNE Get your feet off my dash. 34 EXT. WINGATE - PICK UP/DROP OFF - DAY 34 Michael watches Leigh Anne's car disappear. SANDSTROM (O.S.) Big Mike?... (CONTINUED) 21 34 CONTINUED: 34 Michael turns to see Paul Sandstrom, the principal. 35 EXT. WINGATE - DAY (A FEW MINUTES LATER) 35 Michael and Sandstrom sit on a bench. SANDSTROM Mike, I just got a call from someone at the police department. (off Michael's look) Do you remember the story in the papers awhile back about the man who fell off an overpass? (Michael shakes his head) No one knew who he was and they're not sure if he jumped, or if... at any rate he passed away. Sandstrom struggles with how to say the words. SANDSTROM (CONT'D) Mike, the man... was your father. Michael takes this in. without showing emotion. SANDSTROM (CONT'D) They've been looking for someone to notify and came across your name on our registry. I'm really sorry, son. (NO RESPONSE) Were you close? (Michael shakes his head) When did you last see him? MICHAEL Iono. SANDSTROM I'll try and find out where he's buried. Maybe we could go visit? Michael nods, then rises and walks away. 36 EXT. ANOTHER STREET - DAY (LATER) 36 Michael sits at a bus stop with his bag, rises as a bus stops in front of him. 37 OMITTED 37 The Blind Side -- Yellow Draft - 04/15/09 22 38 INT. LAUNDROMAT - NIGHT 38 Pretty seedy. Michael walks to a sink in the back, opens his plastic sack, pulls out an extra T-shirt and starts to wash it. A WOMAN, the only other patron, reads a magazine. When he turns to look at her, she becomes quite nervous. She sets down the magazine and walks outside. It seems Michael was expecting this because as soon as she leaves he takes his wet T-shirt, wrings it-out, walks to her dryer and tosses the shirt inside to dry with her things. 39 EXT. LAUNDROMAT - NIGHT (LATER) 39 Michael sits in the corner, his head resting against the window, trying to sleep. DISSOLVE TO: 40 EXT. WINGATE - AUDITORIUM - NIGHT 40 A banner over the arch reads: THANKSGIVING PAGEANT TONIGHT! Kids in costume - Pilgrims, Indians, turkeys - race out the door to greet their proud parents. Si, in an ornate headdress looks for and spots Sean and Leigh Anne waving. They walk away together toward the parking lot. 41-42 OMITTED 41-42 43 INT. SEAN'S BMW - PARKING LOT - NIGHT 43 As they exit the parking lot-- LEIGH ANNE Turn on the heat! SEAN I don't know where it is. LEIGH ANNE It's fifteen degrees, you've had this car a month and you don't know how to turn on the heat?! (as she turns it on) What would you do without.me? SEAN Lots of things you'll never know about. (CONTINUED) 23 43 CONTINUED: 43 They trade a look and a smile. Sean puts a.hand on her lap. SI Get a room. LEIGH ANNE Si, don't let this go to your head but I thought you were very convincing in the role of... uh... SI Indian Number Three. I tried out for the Chief but they gave it to Andy Sung. I can't be sure but I think there was some multi-cultural bias thing working. SEAN Or maybe they just thought he'd make a better Chief. SI Dad, he's like Chinese. LEIGH ANNE And you're Irish. If you weren't the Chief how come you got the headdress? Si hesitates a bit before -- SI Dad, I'm gonna need a few more of those free Quesadilla tickets. LEIGH ANNE (LAUGHS) And where does the acorn fall? SEAN Don't laugh too hard. The Quesadilla saved our ass. A44 EXT. STREET - NIGHT A44 Sean's car stops at a red light and Michael crosses in front of them, wearing just his shorts and short sleeved shirt. B44 INT. SEAN'S CAR - NIGHT B44 Leigh Anne notices Michael -- (CONTINUED) 24 B44 CONTINUED: B44 LEIGH ANNE What is he wearing? It's below freezing. What's his name again? SEAN AND SJ Big Mike. LEIGH ANNE Where's he going? She gives Sean a look. Sean rolls down his window. SEAN Hey, Big Mike! Michael stops in the crosswalk, looks to the car. SEAN (CONT'D) Where you headin'? MICHAEL Gym.._. Sean nods, rolls his window back up and drives as the light turns green. LEIGH ANNE The gym? It's nine o'clock. No answer to this. They drive another half block,before -- LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Turn around. Sean sighs, knowing better than to argue. 44 EXT. STREET - NIGHT 44 The BMW pulls to a stop alongside Michael. Leigh Anne gets out, walks up to Michael. LEIGH ANNE Big Mike, my name is Leigh Anne Tuohy. My kids go to Wingate. You said you're going to the gym? Michael slowly nods. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) The school gym's closed. Michael takes this in but doesn't respond. (CONTINUED) 25 44 CONTINUED: 44 LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Why were you going to the gym? (again no answer) Big Mike?! Why were you going to the gym? MICHAEL Because... it's warm. This hits her all at once. She bites her lip. LEIGH ANNE Do you have anywhere to stay tonight? Michael eyes the ground, then nods. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Don't you dare lie to me. 45 INT. SEAN'S BMW - NIGHT 45 Sean and SJ watch the discussion without hearing any of it. Leigh Anne looks to Sean, then back to Michael. SEAN I've seen that look many times. She's about to get her way. Leigh Anne makes her way back to the car, with Michael in tow. She opens the back door and he gets in next to SJ in his headdress. Leigh Anne climbs into the front seat, closes the door. Sean is looking at her. SEAN (CONT'D) Where we going? LEIGH ANNE Home. 46 EXT. RITZY NEIGHBORHOOD - NIGHT 46 The car enters the driveway of a beautiful home and stops. 47 INT. SEAN'S BMW - NIGHT 47 Michael's eyes are frozen at the sight. To him it looks like a mansion. Hell, it IS a mansion. The Blind Side - Green Revision - 04/28/09 26 48 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - FAMILY ROOM - NIGHT 48 Collins, in her pjs, talks on the phone while watching TV and listening to the stereo. She wears a tangerine cleansing masque on her face. When the family enters behind her -- COLLINS How'd the dork do in the play? She turns to see... Sean, Leigh Anne, SJ in headdress and Big Mike. COLLINS (CONT'D) Um... okay... 49 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - LIVING ROOM - NIGHT (LATER) 49 Leigh Anne lays out pillows, sheets, blankets on the couch. LEIGH ANNE I'd give you the guest bedroom but it's full of sample boxes. And the sectional in the family room slides apart when you sleep on it. At least that's what Sean says. MICHAEL Mr. Tuohy sleeps on the couch? LEIGH ANNE Only when he's bad. There's a powder room right there and we're upstairs if you need us. The two share a look, then... LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Sleep tight, honey. She leaves. Michael is dumbfounded, stares at everything in the room, then sits on the couch. SJ Psst... SJ is in the doorway to the kitchen. SJ (CONT'D) If you can't sleep, my room is the first one at the top of the back stairs. I got X-Box, Madden, everything. (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Green Revision - 04/28/09 26A 49 CONTINUED: 49 Michael nods then smiles. SJ smiles back, gives a thumbs up and disappears. Michael's eyes go to a coffee table book (CONTINUED) 27 49 CONTINUED: 49 NORMAN ROCKWELL. On the cover is "FREEDOM FROM WANT" - picturing a family sitting around a dinner table. 50 INT. TUOHY HOUSE -- SEAN AND LEIGH ANNE'S BEDROOM - NIGHT 50 They lie in bed, awake. LEIGH ANNE Was this a bad idea? SEAN What? LEIGH ANNE Don't lie there and pretend you're not thinking the same thing as me. SEAN Fine, tell me what you're thinking so I can know what's supposed to be on my mind. LEIGH ANNE How well do you know Big Mike? SEAN In case you haven't noticed he doesn't have much to say. What's the big deal? It's just one night. (after a beat) It is just one night, right?.. Leigh Anne?... LEIGH ANNE Do you think he'll steal anything? SEAN I guess we'll know in. the morning. He rolls over to go to sleep. Leigh Anne just sits, stares. 51 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - SEAN AND LEIGH ANNE'S BEDROOM - DAY 51 Leigh Anne finishes teasing her hair. Sean rides an exercise bike. Before she leaves the room... LEIGH ANNE If you hear a scream call the insurance adjustor. 28 52 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - COLLINS' BEDROOM - DAY 52 Leigh Anne enters Collins' bedroom. Very "teenage girl" but a mess - clothes everywhere. Leigh Anne opens the curtains throwing light into the room. LEIGH ANNE Up and at 'em. Collins groans. Leigh Anne picks up a few pieces of clothes. on her way out and groans at the mess. We stay with her as she re-enters the hallway, walks and opens the door to -- 53 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - SJ'S BEDROOM - DAY 53 Just as messy but not all clothes. Leigh Anne almost trips on a series of wires connecting games to a large screen TV. LEIGH ANNE Sean Junior! She opens the shades. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Clean this place up before you come downstairs. You hear me? Si crawls out of bed and Leigh Anne exits the room and starts down the stairs, almost afraid of what she'll find. 54 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - LIVING ROOM - DAY 54 Leigh Anne stops, stares -- The couch is totally back to normal and the sheets, blankets and pillows are neatly stacked in almost military precision. No sign of Michael. LEIGH ANNE Mike? Big Mike?! Nothing. She hears a DOG BARKING in the neighborhood and moves to the window to look out. 55 EXT. TUOHY HOUSE - DAY 55 Michael, plastic sack in hand, walks away. Leigh Anne exits the front door, spots Michael and tries to catch up. LEIGH ANNE Big Mike! (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Yellow Draft -- 04/15/09 29 55 CONTINUED: 55 He stops, turns. Leigh Anne walks over. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Where are you going? MICHAEL Iono. LEIGH ANNE Are you spending Thanksgiving with your family? Michael shakes his head. 56 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - KITCHEN -- DAY (LATER) 56 Leigh. Anne carves turkey onto a tray and takes it into... 57 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - FAMILY ROOM -- DAY 57 Leigh Anne sets the turkey on a serving table alongside the rest of the Tuohy Thanksgiving feast. LEIGH ANNE Come and get it! Sean sits at the TV,"watching an Ole Miss football game, while SJ plays.video games on another. Collins chats on her cell. Michael sits off to the side, taking it all in. SEAN SJ, Ole Miss is about to score! SI Which means they're about to fumble. They all shuffle over, grab plates, start piling on food. Sean loads his plate and heads back to the couch. SEAN Looks great, hon. Collins plate is pretty delicately apportioned. COLLINS I see a lot of starch. SJ jams turkey into a roll and lathers on cranberry sauce - creating an easy to eat sandwich. He walks away. (CONTINUED) 30 57 CONTINUED: 57 Michael stares - he's never seen so much food. Leigh Anne hands him a plate. He gingerly puts a slice of.turkey on it. LEIGH ANNE As much as you want. (WALKS AWAY) Oh, the potato salad! With no one watching him, Michael shoves two rolls into his pants pocket and finishes filling his plate. Leigh Anne reenters to see Michael sitting at the dining room table, alone, not touching his plate. Her eyes go to the rest of her family, shoving down food and playing games. She makes a decision, grabs the remote and turns off the TVs. 58 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - DINING ROOM - DAY 58 The entire family sits at the table. Rockwell would be proud. SI Why are we eating in here? Leigh Anne holds out her hands. LEIGH ANNE Shall we say grace? The Tuohy family plus Michael hold hands. Collins stares at her tiny hand intertwined with Michael's. As Leigh Anne prays Michael tries to emulate behavior without closing his eyes, taking it all in... LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Heavenly Father. We thank you for all your many blessings on this family. We thank you for bringing us a new friend. And we ask that you look after. us in this holiday season and never let us forget just how very fortunate we are. Amen. A chorus of Amens and they all dig in. Michael is unsure at first how to correctly use the silverware. He picks up the fork and Leigh Anne nods, "that's right". She eyes Michael's stained shirt. (CONTINUED) 31 58 CONTINUED: 58 LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Big Mike, do you like to shop? (off his look) Because tomorrow I think I'm gonna have to show you how it's done. 59 INT. LEIGH ANNE'S CAR -- DAY 59 Leigh Anne drives and Michael sits shotgun. MICHAEL I qot clothes. LEIGH ANNE You "have" clothes.. And an extra T- shirt in a plastic bag does not a wardrobe make. He looks out the window. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Okay, fine, let's go get 'em. Just tell me where I'm going. No answer. Frustrated, she pulls the car over to the curb and puts it in park. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Tell me everything I need to know about you. He still stares out the window. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Who takes care of you? (NO ANSWER) A mother? Do you have a mother? (NO RESPONSE) A grandmother maybe? Nothing. Leigh Anne turns off the car. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Look, Big Mike, we can do this the easy way - or we can do it the hard way. Take your pick. He eyes the floor. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Fine. Tell me one thing I should know about you. One thing! (CONTINUED) 32 59 CONTINUED: 59 After a beat... MICHAEL I don't like to be called Big Mike. She wasn't expecting this, nods her head. LEIGH ANNE Okay. Mike or Michael? (off his shrug) Tell you what, from now on, to me, 'you're Michael. So,... Michael, where we headed? 60 EXT. HURT VILLAGE HOUSING PROJECT - DAY 60 An expansive beehive of rotting housing. It's the place we saw when we first laid eyes on Michael and nothing's changed. Leigh Anne's car stops at one of the complexes. LEIGH ANNE This is where your mother lives? He nods and she opens her door. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Okay, let's go. He forcefully reaches across her and closes the door, catching her off guard. MICHAEL Don't get out! LEIGH ANNE Who's going to help you with your clothes? MICHAEL (POINTED) Don't get out of the car. Michael gets out on his side and takes care to push the lock before he closes the door. She watches as he walks toward the structure, then notices several of the local ne'er-do-wells eyeing her. she locks the doors again, just for luck. 33 61 EXT. HURT VILLAGE - DAY 61 Michael walks slowly past a few gang-bangers on the steps. The obvious leader, ALTON, eyes him. ALTON Big Mike! Where you been?! Michael ignores, keeps walking. ALTON (CONT'D) And who's that fine piece o' thing driving you around? One of Alton's minions, DAVID, sits nearby. Michael sees him, nods. MICHAEL Hey, David. David, a little embarrassed to be with Alton, nods back. 62 EXT. HURT VILLAGE - DIFFERENT APARTMENT - DAY 62 Michael arrives at an apartment and stops, taken aback. On the door is an EVICTION NOTICE and padlock. He reads from the eviction for several seconds. An Addict down the way fires up and slumps into bliss. A63 EXT. HURT VILLAGE - MINUTES LATER A63 With Leigh Anne's car in the bg., Michael, hidden from view slumps against a wall, looking lost - the first real emotions we've seen from-him. 63 INT. LEIGH ANNE'S CAR - DAY (LATER) 63 She watches as Michael approaches the building with nothing in his hands, and makes his way back to the car. She unlocks it and he crawls inside. After a pregnant moment... MICHAEL She wadn't home. LEIGH ANNE We can come back. Michael takes this in, looks out the window. (CONTINUED) 34 63 CONTINUED: 63 MICHAEL She prolly moved to a nicer place. 64 EXT. BIG AND TALL SHOP - DAY 64 Wrong side of the tracks. Michael and Leigh Anne cross the street toward the shop. LEIGH ANNE I've lived in Memphis my whole life and never been anywhere near here. You're going to take care of me, right? MICHAEL I got your back. LEIGH ANNE That's good to know. Thank you. As they start to walk, Leigh Anne reaches up and takes Michael's arm. He holds it out for her. 65 INT. BIG AND TALL SHOP - DAY (MOMENTS LATER) 65 An AFRICAN AMERICAN SALESMAN directs Leigh Anne and Michael. SALESMAN Everything I got to fit him will be -right here. LEIGH ANNE This is it? If this is all you got why's it say "Big and Tall" on the sign? SALESMAN Big and Tall. You need "Bigger and Taller". He walks away. She starts to pore through the small rack. LEIGH ANNE Anything you like? (HE SHRUGS) The one thing I know about shopping is that if you don't absolutely love it in the store, you won't wear it. The store is where you like it best. (MORE) (CONTINUED) 35 65 CONTINUED: 65 LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) And before you choose something think about yourself wearing it and ask yourself: Is this me? She finds one shirt, holds it out. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) What about this? He shakes his head, "no". LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) (ANOTHER SHIRT) This isn't atrocious. SHE He shakes his head again. After a beat he points. almost laughs. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) This one? This is the one you like? He nods, completely sure. 66 EXT. WINGATE - DAY 66 Drop off area. Leigh Anne's car pulls up and SJ, Collins and Michael get out. LEIGH ANNE Have a great day. Learn something! They say a few good-byes, get out and walk toward the arch. Only then do we see what Michael is wearing: a GARGANTUAN ORANGE AND MAROON STRIPED RUGBY SHIRT. Leigh Anne shakes her head, watching him walk away. A car behind her HONKS. She checks the rear view mirror -- LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Don't get your panties in a wad. 67 INT. TONY RESTAURANT - DAY 67 Ladies who lunch. The right sort doing their thing. Leigh Anne sits at a table with three friends, BETH, ELAINE and SHERRY. They sip on lemon water and nibble at salads. BETH The best part about Paris was the food. (MORE) (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Yellow Draft -- 04/15/09 36 67 CONTINUED: 67 BETH (CONT'D) They use sauce like we use gravy. I had to join a gym the day'we got back. LEIGH ANNE Any of y'all spent much time on the other side of town? ELAINE On the freeway. SHERRY Where exactly are you talking about? LEIGH ANNE Alabama Street... Hurt Village. BETH Hurt Village -- that sounds like a threat. LEIGH ANNE You're not far off. SHERRY It would "hurt" me to go there. ELAINE It would certainly hurt your reputation to go there. BETH (tongue in cheek) I'm actually from there but didn't mind hard work and look where I am now. LEIGH ANNE Eating an eighteen dollar salad. BETH And it's a little soggy to be honest. SHERRY Such a shame. BETH (re: her salad) Yes it is. (CONTINUED) 37 67 CONTINUED: 67 SHERRY Civil rights was responsible for some good things but those programs - building ugly, low cost housing. I mean how could you be creative if you lived there? It's stifling. ELAINE Did you know that black men were employed at a higher rate before those programs? It's a fact. BETH They're not "black", Elaine. The term du jour is African-American. ELAINE And what if they're from Jamaica, or like Bermuda. SHERRY Then they're BerMUDian-Americans. They all cringe and laugh. ELAINE So, why are you asking about the projects, Leigh.Anne? Another one of your charities? BETH A project for the projects. That's catchy. Money would raise itself. (off their laughs) Don't laugh. Count me in, Leigh Anne. And they laugh harder. Leigh Anne smiles, biting her lip. 68 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - KITCHEN - NIGHT 68 SJ and Michael sit at the island doing their homework. SI It can't be that hard. MICHAEL Oh, yeah?... Si looks at the Michael's notebook. (CONTINUED) 38 68 CONTINUED: 68 SI There are different parts of a sentence and you just have to draw lines showing what they do. Sean stops by the refrigerator for a cold drink while he talks on his cell... SEAN (INTO CELL) They're gonna get rid of those stores in Florida... I'll look it over now but I need the sales figures by tomorrow morning. SJ Dad, you remember how to diagram sentences? SEAN Nah. Sean starts to leave, then stops at the door, turns around, sighs and walks over. He leans in over Michael. SEAN (CONT'D) Let's see... MICHAEL You don't have to help. (off Sean's. look) I mean if you're busy or somethin'. SEAN I know. (points to page) Think of a sentence like a football team. This is a noun here, see? That's like the team name or what they're known for - whether they're a running team or a passing team. And this is the verb. That's what makes 'em go - like a star player -- maybe a quarterback, maybe a running back. And this is an adjective - everybody oohs and ahs over adjectives but they're not as important as verbs. SI They're like wide receivers. (CONTINUED) 39 68 CONTINUED: 68 SEAN Or kickers. Michael just stares at them. SEAN (CONT'D) You have no idea what we're talking about, do you? MICHAEL Not exactly. They all laugh. NEARBY Leigh Anne watches, fixated on the image of the three. Sean has an arm on Michael's shoulder. She smiles, almost sadly. 69 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - LIVING ROOM -- NIGHT (LATER) 69 Leigh Anne hands over clean sheets and pillows to Michael, who starts to make the bed. LEIGH ANNE Do you want to stay here, Michael? He keeps working. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Because if you want to... stay... for awhile... longer... I'll try and find some time to figure out a bedroom for you. He stops, turns to her. She walks over, examines the structure of the couch. It sags a bit. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) I mean, look at this, you've practically ruined a.ten thousand dollar couch. She moves closer to him. Her face softens. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Do you want to stay here, Michael? MICHAEL I don't want to go anyplace else. She's a bit befuddled by the response. (CONTINUED) 40 69 CONTINUED: 69 LEIGH ANNE Well,... alright then. 70 INT. WINGATE - BOARDROOM - DAY 70 Leigh Anne sits in a chair reading through Michael's file. LEIGH ANNE I see here on the admission that we're Michael's contact for medical emergencies? Mrs. Smith (from the admissions meeting) sits with her. MRS. SMITH Sean wrote that in last week. We needed a contact number and the ones listed weren't in service. LEIGH ANNE Love that man. Leigh Anne pulls out another sheet, hands it over... LEIGH ANNE (CONT`D) What's this? MRS. SMITH The state makes schools measure for career aptitude in eighth grade. It came with his'file. LEIGH ANNE They try to figure out what a kid's going to be in the eighth grade? What does. it say about Michael? Mrs. Smith nods and reads over Michael's results. MRS. SMITH Doesn't look promising. Spatial relations - third percentile.. Ability to learn - fifth percentile. (sees another number) It's funny though. He tested in the 98th percentile in one category. LEIGH ANNE Which one? (CONTINUED) 41 70 CONTINUED: 70 MRS. SMITH "Protective instincts." Leigh Anne smiles and hands the file back. MRS. SMITH (CONT'D) It's just so sad. Leigh Anne considers this, then... LEIGH ANNE Yes, it is sad. So sad. But he either doesn't know it or doesn't think so and it's my job, and your job, to make sure he doesn't find out. (off Mrs. Smith's look) Michael Oher doesn't feel sorry for himself and I'll be damned if he starts to because of the way we treat him. (again off her look) "Darned." 71 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - MICHAEL'S BEDROOM - DAY 71 Now turned into Michael's room, with an armoire, a chest of drawers, night stands, the whole nine yards. The bed is a massive futon in an ornate stand. Leigh Anne and Michael stand in the doorway. LEIGH ANNE I had to put half my samples in storage but well, anyway, back there's a desk. (points as she talks) Chest o'drawers. Night stand. Lamps. Alarm clock. Bed. Sean says a lot of pro athletes use futons if they can't find a big enough bed. Michael doesn't dare touch anything, just stares in awe. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Well, try it out. See if it feels okay. He gingerly moves to the bed; touches it. (CONTINUED) 42 71 CONTINUED: 71 MICHAEL It's mine? LEIGH ANNE Yeah. (off his look) What? MICHAEL Never had one before. LEIGH ANNE (CONFUSED) A room to yourself? MICHAEL A bed. We can see this unsettles her. She turns away a bit, trying to contain herself. LEIGH ANNE Well, you got one now. 72 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - UPSTAIRS HALLWAY - DAY 72 She leaves the room, walks down the hall and enters -- 73 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - SEAN AND LEIGH ANNE'S BEDROOM - DAY 73 She.closes the door behind her, sits on the bed and starts to tear up. She fights it unsuccessfully. 74 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - UPSTAIRS HALLWAY - DAY 74 OUTSIDE THE DOOR Michael stands, unsure what to do. 75 INT. WINGATE - ADJACENT ROOM - DAY 75 Mrs. Boswell gives Michael - in a RED AND BLUE RUGBY SHIRT - an oral test... MRS. BOSWELL Define Osmosis, Michael. MICHAEL I think I know that. It's when water... 43 76 INT. WINGATE - MRS. BOSWELL'S CLASS - DAY (LATER) 76 Mrs. Boswell grades the paper and puts C+ at the top. 77 INT. WINGATE - HISTORY TEACHER'S CLASSROOM - DAY 77 Michael, this time wearing a GREEN AND GOLD RUGBY SHIRT, is orally tested by GLENDA... GLENDA Name the combatants in the battle of Waterloo. MICHAEL I know that. The little guy, Napoleon was on one side and... 78 INT. WINGATE - GLENDA'S CLASSROOM - DAY (LATER) 78 Glenda marks down a C- 79 INT. WINGATE - SCHOOL CAFETERIA - DAY 79 Michael, in another rugby shirt, this one BLACK AND YELLOW, carries a tray and sits with SJ, who starts laughing. MICHAEL What? SJ Enough with the rugby shirts. You look like a giant bumble bee. Collins walks by with friends and glances but ignores them. GIRL STUDENT Who's the big guy hanging around with your little brother? COLLINS Just another one of Mom's projects. GIRL STUDENT That must get incredibly old. Collins' look says, "yes it does." 80 OMITTED 80 81 INT. WINGATE - BOB'S LITERATURE CLASS -- DAY (LATER) 81 Bob grades Michael's paper. He writes "D". 44 82 INT. SEAN'S BMW - NIGHT 82 The whole family, including Michael, rides in the car. SJ points out fast food restaurants along the way -- SI That Taco Bell. The KFC catty corner. The Long John Silvers on the next block. MICHAEL You own all of 'ern? SJ Yeah. We've got hundreds. COLLINS' (CORRECTING) A hundred and fifteen. MICHAEL Is that why Mr. Tuohy don't have to go to work? SEAN Hey, hey now. I'm working even when I'm not working. MICHAEL And y'all eat at those places for free? SI All you want. It's awesome. MICHAEL What do y'all do with the leftover food? At the restaurant?, SEAN Well, we have to throw some of it away. What's already been cooked. MICHAEL That's too bad. SEAN Yeah, I'd rather sell it. (CONTINUED) 45 82 CONTINUED: 82 SI Seems like you could give it away or something? You should check into that, Daddy. Leigh Anne and Sean share a look and a smile. SEAN All right, I will. MICHAEL Why ain't we eatin' at one of yours tonight? SEAN .Because tonight is a special occasion. SJ What? SEAN I talked to Coach Cotton today. Michael's grades improved enough that he can do spring'training for football in March. LEIGH ANNE Isn't that great? SI Oh, man, you are gonna crush some people! Michael almost smiles, a little unsure. 83 EXT. FANCY RESTAURANT - NIGHT 83 Sean's car pulls up to the valet. As the family gets out Leigh Anne notices a bookstore next door and starts for it. LEIGH ANNE I've got a design book I need to get. Sean, go check on our reservation. SEAN They'll seat us when we walk in the door. You can get the book after dinner. (CONTINUED) 46 83 CONTINUED: 83 LEIGH ANNE (already walking away) They might be closed by then. COLLINS I need some new magazines. SJ shrugs and joins the girls, as does Michael. Sean watches as his family deserts him. 84 INT. BOOKSTORE - NIGHT 84 Leigh Anne finds the book she's looking for and walks through the stacks looking for her kids, plus Michael. She finds them all together in the children's section, laughing. LEIGH ANNE Come on, your dad's already PO'ed. Collins holds up a book. Sendak's WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE. COLLINS Remember this one, Mom? You read it to us like a thousand times. She softens, walks over, takes the book. LEIGH ANNE "And he gnashed his terrible teeth and roared his terrible roar.- SI I always liked this one. He holds up THE STORY OF FERDINAND. LEIGH ANNE Yeah, me too. Leigh Anne sees Michael left out, but interested. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Michael, your Mama ever read either one of those to you? He just stares at her, the answer obvious. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) No one ever... 47 85 EXT. FANCY RESTAURANT - NIGHT 85 The Tuohy family exits and waits for the valet. SEAN Now that was a good steak. COLLINS Thanks, Daddy. MICHAEL Thanks. SEAN You're welcome. As the car pulls up everyone walks toward it except Michael who notices something else -- AT THE SIDE DOOR: A BUSBOY steps outside for a smoke. Michael absently walks over. SEAN (CONT`D) Michael?... Leigh Anne touches Sean's arm, silencing him. They watch as -- Michael greets the busboy. They stand a few feet apart talking. They nod at each other and after a few seconds -- They hug. Leigh Ann is amazed. She's never seen affection in Michael. 86 INT. SEAN'S BMW - NIGHT (MINUTES LATER) 86 As they drive home. LEIGH ANNE Who was that boy you were talking to, Michael? At the restaurant. MICHAEL Marcus. LEIGH ANNE He works there? MICHAEL Yeah. (CONTINUED) 48 86 86 CONTINUED: LEIGH ANNE And how do you know Marcus? MICHAEL He's my brother. Complete silence in the car. Leigh Anne finally breaks it -- LEIGH ANNE Well, I'd like to meet him someday. Would that be okay with you? MICHAEL I don't know where he stays. LEIGH ANNE When's the last time you saw him, Michael? MICHAEL When I was little mebbe. 87 87 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - HALLWAY - NIGHT Collins sits on the floor in the hallway near a door, smiling sadly and secretly listening to --- LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE "Once upon a time in Spain, there was a little bull --" A88 A88 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - MICHAEL'S BEDROOM - NIGHT - SAME A strange sight. Leigh Anne, SJ and Michael all sit on Michael's huge futon as Leigh Anne reads THE STORY OF FERDINAND. No one enjoys this more than Leigh Anne... LEIGH ANNE "...and his name was Ferdinand. All the other little bulls he lived with would run and jump and butt their heads together, but not Ferdinand. He liked to sit just quietly and smell the flowers"... 88 88 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - SEAN AND LEIGH ANNE'S BEDROOM - NIGHT Leigh Anne and Sean sit in bed. Sean puts his book on the night stand and leans over to give Leigh Anne a kiss. He notices her smile... (CONTINUED) The Blind side - Yellow Draft -- 04/15/09 49 88 CONTINUED: 88 SEAN What? LEIGH ANNE Huh? SEAN Why are you smiling? LEIGH ANNE I don't know. I'm just happy. Really happy. SEAN Does. this happiness have anything to do with Michael? LEIGH ANNE No. It has everything to do with Michael. Sean smiles, kisses her, turns off the light. She snuggles next to him and kisses the back of his neck. SEAN Oh... He gets the message, rolls over and kisses her on the lips. SEAN (CONT'D) Happy's good. As their amorous activities continue... LEIGH ANNE I think we should start a charity. For kids like him. SEAN (his mind elsewhere) Sure, okay. LEIGH ANNE Maybe fund a program at Wingate. SEAN Absolutely... LEIGH ANNE Are you even listening to me? (CONTINUED) 50 88 CONTINUED: 88 SEAN I try to concentrate on one thing at a time. LEIGH ANNE You knew I was a multi-tasker when you married me. She kisses him and they roll over, laughing. 89 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - LIVING ROOM - DAY 89 The Tuohy family, dressed nice, poses in front of a blue'and red artificial Christmas tree adorned ENTIRELY WITH OLE MISS ORNAMENTS. They are posing for a photograph. PHOTOGRAPHER Okay, big smiles everyone! FLASH! Leigh Anne smiles but notices --- Michael sitting on the couch by himself. LEIGH ANNE Michael! Come over here and get in the next one. Sean gives her a look like she's crazy. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) We don't have a single picture with him. (off Sean's sigh) Oh, come on. It's not like I'm gonna put it on the Christmas card. Michael moves in behind the family, dwarfing them. PHOTOGRAPHER Okay, really big smiles. One, two, three... say Rebels! FLASH TO: THE TUOHY FAMILY CHRISTMAS CARD - INCLUDING MICHAEL 90 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - FAMILY ROOM - DAY 90 New Year's Day. Sean, Si and Michael watch football. Collins sits on the couch reading. Leigh Anne comes in the front door with groceries. (CONTINUED) 51 90 CONTINUED: 90 LEIGH ANNE Who's winning? SI Tennessee. LEIGH ANNE Too bad. Who are they playing? SEAN So you root against Tennessee no matter who they're playing? LEIGH ANNE Yep. With gusto. SI (TO MICHAEL) She can't stand Tennessee. LEIGH ANNE Collie-bell, I thought you were going to your boyfriend's? COLLINS I'm just gonna hang around here today. LEIGH ANNE I like that. SEAN Coupla messages on the machine. She pushes PLAY on the message machine. MESSAGE MACHINE Hey, Leigh Anne, it's Patrick Ramsey. INTERCUT WITH: A91 INT. WASHINGTON REDSKINS LOCKER ROOM - DAY A91 PATRICK RAMSEY, on his cell phone, near his locker... PATRICK RAMSEY You sent me these measurements for clothes and I posted 'em in the locker room for donations but there's a problem. (MORE) (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Yellow Draft -- 04/15/09 52 A91 CONTINUED: A91 PATRICK RAMSEY (CONT'D) I mean, are you sure the sizes are right, because there's nobody on our team who's that big? Gimme a call. BACK TO SCENE:. B91 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - FAMILY ROOM - DAY B91 Leigh Anne chuckles as the next message begins -- MESSAGE MACHINE Hey, Sean, hey Leigh Anne, it's cousin Bobby. Happy New Years! INTERCUT WITH: C91 INT. COUSIN BOBBY'S HOUSE - DAY C91 Bobby sits in his recliner, talks on phone... COUSIN BOBBY Listen, I've had about five cold ones so'I'm just gonna go ahead and ask... Who's the colored boy in y'all's,Christmas Card? BACK TO SCENE: D91 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - FAMILY ROOM - DAY D91 Leigh Anne and Sean look at each other and laugh. ELAINE (V.0.) Leigh Anne, you looked teeny-tiny next to him. 91 INT. TONY RESTAURANT - DAY 91 Leigh Anne sits at a table with her lunch buddies. They're finishing up and are all laughing hard except Leigh Anne. ELAINE It was like you were Jessica Lange and he was King Kong. SHERRY I taped your card to, the fridge. The next morning Frank almost gagged on his orange juice. (CONTINUED) 53 91 CONTINUED: 91 BETH Does Michael get the family discount at Taco Bell? Because if he does Sean's gonna lose a few stores. More laughter. LEIGH ANNE Look, he's a great kid. ELAINE I say just make it official and adopt him. Big laughs at the "crazy" idea. LEIGH ANNE He'll be eighteen in a few months. (off their confusion) So, I mean it wouldn't make much sense to legally adopt him, right? They realize she's thought about it and stop laughing. After an awkward beat of silence... SHERRY Is this some kind of white guilt thing, Leigh Anne? I mean charity's the Lord's work but... ELAINE What will your daddy say? LEIGH ANNE Before or after he turns over in his grave? Daddy's gone five years now, Elaine, and to make matters worse you were at the funeral. You wore Chanel with that awful black hat. Before Elaine can attack -- LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Look, here's the deal. I don't need any of y'all to approve of my choices. But I do ask you to respect them. You have no idea what this boy's been through. (MORE) (CONTINUED) 54 91, CONTINUED: 91 LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) And if this is going to be a running diatribe I can find an overpriced salad a lot closer to home. SHERRY I'm so sorry, Leigh Anne. We didn't intend to -- ELAINE No, we didn't, really -- BETH I mean, what you're doing is so great. To open your home to him. You're changing his life. Leigh Anne smiles to herself, realizing... LEIGH ANNE No. He's changing mine. ELAINE That's awesome for you, but... what about Collins? LEIGH ANNE What about Collins? ELAINE Aren't you worried, even just a little? (off Leigh Anne) I mean he is a boy, a large, black boy, sleeping under the same roof. Leigh Anne stares at them, shakes her head then grabs the CHECK --- LEIGH ANNE I've got this. (rises; to the group) Shame on you. And strides away. 92 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - COLLINS' ROOM - NIGHT 92 Collins is reading in bed. Leigh Anne knocks, enters and sits on the edge of the bed. (CONTINUED) 55 92 92 CONTINUED: LEIGH ANNE Be honest with me now, okay? Collins nods, having no idea what her mother is about to say. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Is Michael being here weird for you? COLLINS They're stupid kids, who cares what they say. LEIGH ANNE What kids? COLLINS At school. They're juvenile. LEIGH ANNE And what do the juvenile kids say? COLLINS It's really not worth repeating. And don't worry about SJ - he loves the attention. He introduces Michael as his big brother. LEIGH ANNE What about you? COLLINS It's fine. (off Leigh Anne's look) I mean, you can't just throw him out on the street. LEIGH ANNE I can make other arrangements. (off Collins' hesitance) Just let me know. Okay?... Leigh Anne kisses Collins goodnight. 93 93 EXT. WINGATE - PLAYGROUND - DAY Michael walks up to the two little Kindergarten girls from before, sitting in the swings. He smiles. They smile back. FIRST LITTLE GIRL Hi Mike. (CONTINUED) 56 93 CONTINUED: 93 MICHAEL Hi. Need a push? They giggle and Michael pushes them, one arm each until they're flying high and squealing. NEARBY Collins watches. 94 INT. WINGATE - LIBRARY - DAY 94 Collins is sitting with her friends, laughing and whispering. She notices Michael enter and walk to a table with a book. He sits alone while every other table is full. Collins sighs, makes up her mind and stands with her books. FRIEND Where are you going? Collins walks away toward Michael. FRIEND (CONT'D) Collins? They are aghast when they see Collins set down her books across from Michael and sit. AT MICHAEL'S TABLE Michael is confused. She looks at him and shakes her head. COLLINS Quit looking at me like that. I mean, we study together at home. Eyes in the library are on the pair as they start to read. 95 EXT. WINGATE -- PRACTICE FIELD - DAY 95 Several players, in full gear, drag equipment out onto the field under the watchful eye of Bert Cotton. Sean Tuohy sits in the nearby stands. Michael carries four blocking dummies to the center of the field and tosses them like they're pillows. Cotton smiles. COTTON You know how much those things weigh? This kid's gonna make us all famous. (CONTINUED) 57 95 95 CONTINUED: SEAN Easy, Bert. It's only the spring and he hasn't even been through his first practice. (LATER) 96 96 EXT. WINGATE - PRACTICE FIELD - DAY Michael is lined up at defensive tackle. The offense breaks the huddle and Michael just stands there. He notices the other defensive linemen get in a stance and kind of squats a bit. When the ball is snapped he just holds his hands out, keeping the blocker from getting close to his body. The running back races right past him and into the secondary. THE WHISTLE BLOWS and Cotton races up to Michael. COTTON Okay, Mike, you fought off the block but you've got to shuck him and make the tackle. You got it? NEXT PLAY Michael gets down in a his stance and when the ball is snapped he gets under the blocker and lifts him up like WWF. The quarterback goes back to pass and sees Michael lumbering toward him with the lineman on his shoulders. The Quarterback's eyes go wide and he races out of the pocket and throws and incomplete pass. ANOTHER WHISTLE. COTTON (CONT'D) Shuck the blocker, Mike! Michael gingerly sets the lineman on the ground. IN THE STANDS Leigh Anne shows up, sits next to Sean. LEIGH ANNE How's he doing? SEAN Doesn't quite have the hang of it yet. SERIES OF SHOTS: Michael tries to crawl under the blocker. (CONTINUED) 58 96 96 CONTINUED: COTTON No! Michael drops back and tries to intercept a pass. COTTON (CONT'D) No! Michael holds a blocker off him with one arm and looks skyward as a flock of birds flies overhead. COTTON (CONT'D) No! No! No! 97 EXT. WINGATE - PRACTICE FIELD - DAY (AFTER PRACTICE) 97 As players leave the field, Bert Cotton walks and talks with Leigh Anne and Sean... COTTON Most kids from bad situations can't wait to be violent and that comes out on the field. But this kid, he doesn't seem to wanna hit anyone. LEIGH ANNE (almost to herself) He's Ferdinand the Bull. COTTON What? LEIGH ANNE Nothing. COTTON I thought for sure he was gonna be a player. I can't believe I used up my chits to get him in school. LEIGH ANNE I thought you said it was your Christian duty? He gives her a smirk. SEAN Look, Bert, he's never even played before. (CONTINUED) 59 97 CONTINUED: 97 COTTON And he won't in the fall if he doesn't improve a lot before then. 98 EXT. WINGATE - PRACTICE FIELD - DIFFERENT DAY 98 Si, holding a sheet and wearing a whistle, stands before Michael. No one else'is around. SI This is your summer workout sheet. First it says to warm up and get loose. (off Michael's look) Well, go ahead, get loose. Michael moves his arms around a bit then stops. SJ (CONT'D) You loose? (MICHAEL NODS) Okay, next is five one hundred yard runs to stretch out your legs. Michael grimaces. MICHAEL Let's go home, play some video games. SI Look, everybody at. Wingate is expecting you to be a star football player. You don't want to let them down, do you? MICHAEL Iono.. SI What about Dad and Mom? (off Michael's look) 'Cause you see, in our family, everyone's an athlete. Dad was a basketball star, Collins plays volleyball and runs track. Me, as you know, I do it all and Mom,... well, Mom was a cheerleader, which doesn't exactly count but don't tell her I said that. (CONTINUED) 60 98 CONTINUED: 98 MICHAEL Okay... Michael moves to the line. Si raises his whistle and blows. 99 99 EXT. WINGATE PRACTICE FIELD -- DAY SERIES OF SHOTS - DIFFERENT DAYS: SJ holds a blocking dummy and Michael fires out, hitting the dummy and sending Si flying. Michael does ten yard "back and forths" as Si times him. Michael does push ups as SJ lowers himself to count. Michael does crab crawls. WIDE - SJ runs Michael through his workout. He blows his whistle and Michael collapses on the ground - dead tired. 100 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - LEIGH ANNE'S WORKSPACE - NIGHT 100 Leigh Anne goes through sample boxes and matches swatches. MICHAEL Mrs. Tuohy? Michael stands nearby. LEIGH ANNE I hear "Mrs. Tuohy" I look over my shoulder for my mother--in-law. Call me Leigh Anne or Mama or almost anything else. MICHAEL Will you help get me something? LEIGH ANNE What? MICHAEL Driver's license. LEIGH ANNE Why do you need a driver's license when you don't have a car? MICHAEL You have a car. (CONTINUED) 61 100 100 CONTINUED: LEIGH ANNE That I use to haul y'all all over creation with. He doesn't say anything but doesn't leave either. Leigh Anne puts down the swatches, turns to him.. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Why do you want a license, Michael? MICHAEL Something to carry. With my name on it. She locks eyes with him. This time he holds her gaze. DMV EMPLOYEE (V.0.) Address?... 101 INT. DMV OFFICE - DAY 101 Leigh Anne and Michael sit across from a DMV EMPLOYEE typing on her computer. Leigh Anne holds out her driver's license. DMV EMPLOYEE Is this his address as well? LEIGH ANNE Yes. He lives with us. DMV EMPLOYEE Are y'all his foster parents? LEIGH ANNE No. DMV EMPLOYEE His legal guardians? LEIGH ANNE oh... no. The Employee does a search on the computer. As she types... DMV EMPLOYEE Does he have a Social Security card? Leigh Anne looks to Michael, who shakes his head. DMV EMPLOYEE (CONT'D) Birth certificate? (CONTINUED) 62 101 CONTINUED: 101 LEIGH ANNE We tried to find one for school, but... DMV.EMPLOYEE You don't know which city, which county, which hospital?... LEIGH ANNE How big a problem is this? DMV Employee looks to Leigh Anne. DMV EMPLOYEE There's nobody named Michael Oher in the system. Another last name perhaps? Leigh Anne again turns to Michael, who shrugs. LEIGH ANNE Look, I'll sign something saying he lives with us and we'll pay for the insurance; whatever it takes. (off her look) What's it gonna take? Off the Employee's look -- 102 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - SEAN AND LEIGH ANNE'S MASTER BATH - NIGHT 102 As they get ready for bed. Sean rinses his mouth -- SEAN You wanna do what?! LEIGH ANNE Don't pretend you didn't hear me. SEAN Shouldn't we at least talk about it? LEIGH ANNE What do you think we're doing? And don't act like I'm going behind your back. I know you put us down as his medical contact at school. (CONTINUED) 63. 102 CONTINUED: 102 SEAN There's a big difference between paying for a broken arm and being legally responsible for someone. Someone we barely know. LEIGH ANNE And that's another thing. We have to find out more about his past. SEAN He won't talk about it. He's like an onion; you have to peel it a layer at a time. LEIGH ANNE Not if you use a knife. What if we sent him to a child psychologist? SEAN Do you really expect Big Mike -- LEIGH ANNE MICHAEL --- SEAN -- expect Michael to lie down and talk about his childhood like he's Woody Allen or something? Michael's gift is his ability to forget. He's mad at no one and doesn't really care what happened in the past. This puts her on her heels. LEIGH'ANNE You're right. SEAN (like he's never heard THESE WORDS) Excuse me? "You're right?" (off her grimace) How'd those words taste coming out of your mouth? LEIGH ANNE Like vinegar. She moves to him, holds him. (CONTINUED) 64 102 CONTINUED: 102 LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) At least promise me you'll think about it. SEAN Alright. LEIGH ANNE "Alright" you'll think about it or "alright" we should do it? SEAN Is there a difference? 103 INT. CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICES OFFICE DAY 103 Leigh Anne sits in a crowded waiting area, talking on her cell phone. She's been here awhile. LEIGH ANNE (INTO CELL) Just tell Rodney to hold the chiffonier for me and I'll get by after while. TO She hangs up and, exasperated by the wait, rises and walks a counter, pushing past someone -- LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) I'm not cutting, just asking. (TO EMPLOYEE) I've been waiting for over an hour and I look around and all I see is people shooting the bull and drinking coffee. Who runs this place anyway? The "heard it all" EMPLOYEE points to the wall with a government seal and a large portrait of President Bush. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Well I'd have it in shape in two days, I can tell you that. EMPLOYEE I'm sure you would. How can I help you? She turns to the man waiting behind her. LEIGH ANNE He was first. (CONTINUED) 65 103 103 CONTINUED: MAN IN LINE No, you go ahead. I think I. want to hear this. EMPLOYEE Me, too. LEIGH ANNE (TO EMPLOYEE) I do not appreciate the attitude. EMPLOYEE Ma'am, you can tell me what you want or I'll make sure you wait all day. How. Can. I. Help. You? LEIGH ANNE I'd like to become a legal guardian. EMPLOYEE Lord look over that child. (LATER) 104 104 INT. CRAMPED OFFICE - DAY A haggard MANAGER, let's call him RONALD, sits across from Leigh Ann. He looks at a flimsy file. RONALD There's very little on Michael. Most of his files have been lost. LEIGH ANNE What is in there? RONALD A few case notes. (holds one sheet up) This one describes an incident where officers forcibly removed Michael and six half-siblings from Denise Oher's care when Michael was seven. Quite a scene evidently. They had to split up the kids. And it's far from the worst. LEIGH ANNE Where is she? His mother? RONALD Dunno, but if you find her we have a bunch more files we could add to. (CONTINUED.) 66 104 CONTINUED: 104 LEIGH ANNE How many children does she have? RONALD At least a dozen, probably more. With her drug arrest record my guess would be she can't even remember. Leigh Anne absorbs this. LEIGH ANNE We'd need her permission though, .right? RONALD No. Michael is a ward of the state. Just apply and get a Judge to sign off on it. LEIGH ANNE So you would give him away without even telling his mother? Ronald shrugs. 105 EXT. HURT VILLAGE - DAY 105 Looks the same as before except for the'blonde woman walking between the buildings. Leigh Anne spots and checks a list of tenants posted. She can barely see through the cover as someone has scrawled "C Block" on it. 106 EXT. HURT VILLAGE - DAY 106 The one Michael visited before. Leigh Anne summons her courage and knocks on the door. And again. No answer. A VOICE comes from the apartment behind her -- MAN'S VOICE (O.S.) Who you lookin' for?! Startled, Leigh Anne turns and sees Alton approaching... LEIGH ANNE I'm looking for Denise Oher. ALTON Dee Dee don't stay there no more. (CONTINUED) 67 106 CONTINUED: 106 LEIGH ANNE Do you know where she might be? ALTON Chances are she ain't gone far. (SMILES) I seen you before. You with Big Mike now. You wanna come in for a wine cooler or sumthin'? LEIGH ANNE No, I can't, but thank you. 107 EXT. HURT VILLAGE - PLAYGROUND - DAY 107 Leigh Anne speaks with a mother trying to keep her son from hurting himself on a rusty slide. The mother points to another building. 108 EXT. HURT VILLAGE - BUILDING E -- DAY 108 A door opens revealing DENISE OHER in a ratty robe. LEIGH ANNE Hi. Mrs. Oher? DENISE OHER You from the state? LEIGH ANNE No. My. name is Leigh Anne Tuohy and your son Michael lives with me. And my family. Denise takes this in. 109 INT. HURT VILLAGE - DENISE'S APARTMENT - DAY (MINUTES LATER) 109 Leigh Anne sits on the edge of a filthy couch and eyes.the room. There are sleeping pallets on the floor and empty wine and beer bottles strewn around. DENISE OHER (O.S.) How is my boy, how's Big Mike? LEIGH ANNE (CALLS OUT) He's fine. He's doing well. (after a beat) When did you move from the other building? (CONTINUED) 68 109 CONTINUED: 109 Denise emerges from the back of the apartment, adjusting a wig on her head, making herself "presentable." DENISE OHER Awhile back. This is temporary. Friends let me stay here. LEIGH ANNE When did you last see Michael? DENISE OHER Iono. We might have some wine in the kitchen, if... LEIGH ANNE No, no that's very kind but... DENISE OHER How many foster kids you got living with you? LEIGH ANNE Oh, I'm not a foster parent to Michael. We were just helping him out. DENISE OHER State don't pay you nothing? LEIGH ANNE No. DENISE OHER And he lives with you? (Leigh Anne nods) And you feed him?. (ANOTHER NOD) Buy him clothes, too? LEIGH ANNE When I can find them in his size. DENISE OHER You a fine Christian lady. LEIGH ANNE I try to be. DENISE OHER This is all real nice what you're doing, but don't be surprised if one day you wake up and he gone. (CONTINUED) . 69 109 109 CONTINUED: LEIGH ANNE What do you mean? DENISE OHER He's a "runner". That's what the state called him after they took him from me. (off her look) Every foster home they sent him to, he'd slip out the window at night and come looking for me. No matter where I was that boy would come find me, take care of me. (AN EXPLANATION) I've had some . health problems. LEIGH ANNE Mrs. Oher, was Michael born under a different name? Denise tries to remember. After a few seconds... DENISE OHER Proctor. That was his Daddy's last name. LEIGH ANNE Where is he, the father, if you don't mind me asking? DENISE OHER Ain't. seen him since he left. LEIGH ANNE And when was that? DENISE OHER Week after Mike was born. LEIGH ANNE Do you have Michael's birth certificate? Denise sighs, looks around at the mess, shakes her head. And then, unexpectedly, starts to cry softly. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) It's okay, Mrs. Oher.. I'll figure it out. Leigh Anne walks over, kneels and takes Denise's hands. (CONTINUED) 70 109 CONTINUED: 109 LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) You'll always be Michael's Mama. Would you like to see him? DENISE OHER No... Not this way. LEIGH ANNE People lose birth certificates. It's nothing to be ashamed of. DENISE OHER It's Williams. (off Leigh Anne's look) His last name's Williams. Couldn't even remember who the boy's father is. Leigh Anne bites her lip'and puts her arms around Denise, who hugs back. DISSOLVE TO: 110 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - DINING ROOM - DAY 110 The entire Tuohy family sits with Michael at the table. SEAN Michael, we have something to ask you. MICHAEL What? SEAN Leigh. Anne and I would like to become your legal guardians. MICHAEL What's that mean? LEIGH ANNE Well, what it means is, we want to know if you'd like to be a part of this family? Michael looks to a grinning SJ, to Collins who nods and smiles, then to Leigh Anne... MICHAEL I kinda thought I already was. (CONTINUED) 71 110 110 CONTINUED: Leigh Anne feels a wave of emotion, nods to him, then races away to go and gather herself. - "I Michael looks to Sean for an explanation. Sean shrugs can't explain her to you." 111 A CAMERA FLASH (IN DMV OFFICE) 111 When it clears we see MICHAEL'S FACE - on a DRIVER'S LICENSE. 112 112 EXT. TUOHY HOUSE - DAY Michael, blindfolded, is led outside by the entire family. When Leigh Anne pulls if off, Michael gasps at the sight of - A NEW TRUCK in the driveway. SEAN Is that the one you wanted? He just stands there, staring. Sean hands him the keys. SEAN (CONT'D) Well, hell, take it for a spin. (off Michael's look) Go on. SI Can I go, too? LEIGH ANNE okay, but Michael?... (off his look) Be careful. Michael smiles and he and SJ get inside the truck. COLLINS He wanted a truck?! SEAN Michael thinks he's a redneck. 113 113 EXT. WINGATE - PARKING LOT - DAY Michael drives up in his new truck, parks it carefully. At the drop off Big Tony's car sputters away, leaving Steven at the curb. Steven notices Michael and walks over, eyeing the truck. (CONTINUED) 72 113 CONTINUED: 113 MICHAEL Tenth grade tough? STEVEN Naw. (points to truck) This really yours? MICHAEL Yeah. STEVEN They just give it to ya'? MICHAEL Yeah. After a beat... STEVEN You're right. white people are crazy. And they walk off together to class. 114 INT. WINGATE - BOB'S LITERATURE CLASS - DAY 114 Students seated, including Michael, listen to Bob, who stands at the front of the classroom. BOB You are now seniors. Congratulations. But with that distinction comes responsibility. This will be one of your tougher courses because my job is to prepare you, at least most of you, for the rigors of college Freshman English. You are each holding a class study guide which details assignments. I won't remind you what is due and when. Read the materials and come prepared. At the end of the year you will each choose one of our literature assignments and present a written dissection of the piece. The faces in the classroom tell us this is a tough course. 73 115 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - DINING ROOM - DAY 115 Dozens of.condiment jars and bottles are lined up on the table. SJ has the football playbook open and is explaining formations to Michael. SI See, you're the ketchup, here at Left Tackle. On the weakside. MICHAEL I'm not that weak, SJ. SI it just means there are more blockers on the other side. It's a compliment, really. MICHAEL A compliment for a condiment. SJ (CHUCKLES) Good one. (back to work) So the first play is simple. "Gap." It just means you block whoever is in front of you, or the person on your inside shoulder if you're not covered by a defender. (points to condiments) I'll be the running back and you show me what you're supposed to do. Ready... . Hike! SJ, using both hands, moves Cayenne pepper back a bit, then "hands off" to Cinnamon who "runs" toward Michael (Ketchup). Michael moves the bottle forward, pushing back Mustard, then Relish, as well as toppling a bottle of Vanilla Extract. SJ (CONT'D) Open lane to the end zone. All there is to it. Si slides Cinnamon forward. The bottle flies off the end of the table and crashes on the ground just as -- Leigh Anne walks down the stairs, purse in hand -- LEIGH ANNE What is going on here?! (CONTINUED) 74 115 CONTINUED: 115 MICHAEL Cinnamon just scored. SI We're going through the playbook. Michael got moved to offense.. LEIGH ANNE Well, when you're finished, put the players back in the spice cabinet. SJ No problem. Actually, Mom, we were waiting for you. The new Madden came out and me and Michael want to go get it. LEIGH ANNE Honey, I've got a meeting in ten minutes. MICHAEL I'll drive. off her look -- 116 INT. MICHAEL'S TRUCK - DAY 116 Michael drives while SJ searches for music on the radio. SI Look for Walker Street. That's where we take a left. Si finds a hip-hop station and they both groove to the beat, dancing in the seats. SJ (CONT`D) That's what I'm talkin' 'bout! As the beat reaches a crescendo -- Michael instinctively throws a big arm in front of SJ as -- 117 EXT. INTERSECTION - SAME 117 THE-truck CRASHES into the side of a VAN. 118 INT. RUG SHOP - DAY 118 Leigh Anne, with a client, is looking at rugs with the owner. (CONTINUED) 75 118 118 CONTINUED: LEIGH ANNE This is not a twenty thousand dollar Oushak, Jerry. The borders are different widths, it's been altered. Leigh Anne's phone rings. As she answers LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) We'll give you nine tops. (INTO PHONE) Hello ... The look on her face changes -- 119 EXT. INTERSECTION - DAY 119 A massive traffic jam. Leigh Anne pulls her car right onto the median, gets out and starts running. She passes stopped cars and weaves past bystanders on her way to: THE COLLISION INTERSECTION As she approaches she sees -- Michael's truck -- the front end is smashed -- The Van - its side caved in -- And -- Michael sitting on the curb, crying. She races over -- LEIGH ANNE Michael! He looks up, sobbing. MICHAEL I'm so sorry, I'm so sorry! LEIGH ANNE Where's SJ?! MICHAEL (POINTS) Go help him! Please go help him! Leigh Anne turns to see a group of PARAMEDICS kneeling around a body. She gasps, races over and looks down at -- Si, whose face is bloody. He spots Leigh Anne and sits up. SI Mom, do you think the blood will come out of my shirt? (CONTINUED) 76 119 119 CONTINUED: LEIGH ANNE AND PARAMEDIC - MINUTES LATER While the paramedics attend to an obviously fine SJ, Leigh Anne and a FIREMAN eye the deflated airbag. FIREMAN An airbag deploys at 200 miles per hour. Your son's too small to sit in the front seat. LEIGH ANNE He's okay, though, right? FIREMAN Busted lip, some facial bruising. When an airbag strikes a child his size it usually means a fractured face, a broken neck or worse. It's almost like the airbag started at him then changed direction. Defective or something. Very, very lucky. Leigh Anne nods thanks and looks to Michael, still on the curb, eyes on the ground. She walks over, kneels down. LEIGH ANNE Michael, it wasn't your fault. It could have happened to anybody.. He doesn't look up. She almost gasps when she notices -- HIS ARM - red, bleeding, a large burn from the wrist all the way up to the sleeve, which is also singed. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Michael, your arm... what happened? He looks up and into her eyes... MICHAEL I stopped it. 120 120 EXT. WINGATE - STANDS/PRACTICE FIELD - DAY SJ sits in the stands videotaping -- [NOTE: We integrate SJ's video with live action]. ON THE FIELD: Michael skips to the line and gets down in his stance. On the snap Michael pushes the tackle, JAY COLLIS, who rolls, gets by Michael and makes the tackle. (CONTINUED) 77 120 CONTINUED: 120 COTTON 0her! You've got a hundred pounds on Collis and you can't keep him out of our backfield?! IN THE STANDS Leigh Anne sits down next to SJ. LEIGH ANNE What's. with the camera? SI Michael does better when he can see what he's supposed to be doing. ON THE FIELD The quarterback drops back to pass. Michael backpedals. When the Defender tries. to go around him, Michael grabs him.with one big paw and throws him to the ground. A WHISTLE BLOWS. COTTON Holding - left tackle! He gets right in Michael's face, grabs his jersey. COTTON (CONT'D) You can only grab in here -- at the tits, you got it?! You grab out here or here, we're gonna get flagged and I'm gonna get pissed. Leigh Anne grimaces, shakes her head. NEXT PLAY At the snap of the ball Michael tries to pass protect, pushes the Defender who tries left, right, then slides past Michael and sacks the quarterback. COTTON (CONT'D) Move your feet, son! Keep 'em moving! Back to the huddle! Cotton addresses an ASSISTANT COACH... COTTON (CONT'D) Well at least he'll look good coming off the bus. The other team will be terrified 'til they realize he's a marshmallow. (CONTINUED) 78 120 120 CONTINUED: As they chuckle, Leigh Anne strides past, onto the field. LEIGH ANNE Gimme a minute, Bert. COTTON We're in the middle of practice, Leigh Anne! LEIGH ANNE You can thank me later. Bert just watches as Leigh Anne walks straight to the huddle and pulls Michael aside. The other players turn to watch. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Do you remember just after we met, and we went to that horrible part of town to buy you those dreadful clothes? (HE NODS) And I was a little scared and you told me not to worry, that you had my back?. Do you remember that? MICHAEL Yes ma'am. LEIGH ANNE If anyone tried to get to me you would have stopped them, right? (HE NODS) And when you and Si were in that car wreck, what did you do to that airbag? MICHAEL I stopped it. Leigh Anne points to the offense. LEIGH ANNE This team is your family. And you have to protect them -- (points to defense) --from those guys. She walks over and grabs the QB, pulls him out. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Tony is your quarterback. You protect his blindside. (MORE) (CONTINUED) 79 120 120 CONTINUED: LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) When you look at him, think of me. How you have my back. How you have his. She grabs BOBBY, a short stump of a running back. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) oomaloompah here is your tailback. When you look at him think of SJ and how you'd never let anything or anyone hurt him. Do you understand me? MICHAEL What about Mr. Tuohy and Collins? LEIGH ANNE I suppose they can be on the team, too. Are you going to protect the family, Michael? He nods. She nods back and walks away, past Bert Cotton. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Yelling at him won't help. He doesn't trust men. In his experience they pretend to care about you 'til they disappear. Cotton chuckles.. She walks over and sits next to SJ, who has the video camera in his lap. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) You're gonna wanna get this. INTERCUT VIDEO AND LIVE ACTION: At the snap Michael drives the defender into the dirt. Michael drops back, knocks down one defender, then takes on another while Tony completes a pass. On a sweep to his side, Michael pushes three defenders away, clearing an alley for Bobby to blast through. Bert shakes his head, turns to Leigh Anne -- COTTON What'd you say to him? (CONTINUED) 80 120 120 CONTINUED: LEIGH ANNE You should get to know your players, Bert. He tested 98 percent in protective instincts. (off Bert's look) I told you you.could thank me later. (a beat for effect) It's later, Bert! COTTON (BY ROTE) Thank you, Leigh Anne. 121 121 EXT. WINGATE - STADIUM -- NIGHT Packed'house - bands, banners, cheerleaders. IN THE STANDS: Sean, Leigh Anne and SJ take their seats and check out the raucous crowd. SEAN So much for home field advantage. LEIGH ANNE You ever seen so many rednecks in one place? SJ Nascar, not even close. 122 122 INT. WINGATE - LOCKER ROOM -- NIGHT Coach Cotton is addressing his team before the game. COTTON On the schedule it says this is a home game but don't be deceived, gentlemen. Three fourths of the people in the stands are here from Milford. They'll be loud and rowdy and a lot of 'em drunk. Keep your helmets on 'til you're on the sidelines. I don't want anyone getting beaned with a whiskey bottle. (BEAT) Grab a knee. And the team huddles for their prayer... (CONTINUED) 81 122 122 CONTINUED: COTTON (CONT'D) For we can... (team repeats each phrase) Do all things... Through Jesus Christ... Who strengthens us... Each and every day... And may God... Bless the Crusaders! As they rise to leave-- COTTON (CONT'D) Oh, one more thing. The reason Milford traveled all that way to come here is they expect to whup your ass. Whup your ass and have a party in your house. Whup your ass, have a party in your house and piss on your mama's new couch. Is that gonna happen? The team erupts with a chorus of NO'.s and HELL NO!s. 123 EXT. WINGATE - EDGE OF STANDS - NIGHT 123 As the Wingate Crusaders exit the dressing room they find themselves next to the Milford Lions ready to take the field. The cocky Milford players eye the Crusaders. MILFORD PLAYER Hey, Crusaders, y'all gonna turn the other cheek or just bend over?! Another Milford player, #66, spots Michael. MILFORD #66 Would y'all look at the size of that buck! Milford takes the field. Jay Collis, to Michael... JAY COLLIS Pay 'em back on the field. Coach Cotton raises a hand and the team moves forward to squeeze through an entrance onto the field. Above them Milford fans look down and jeer, toss sodas at them. The Blind Side -- Yellow Draft - 04/15/09 82 124 EXT. WINGATE - STADIUM - NIGHT 124 MILFORD DAD Damn, that ain't fair! They got a big ole' black bear playing for 'em! What is this, a circus?! IN THE STANDS Leigh Anne, Sean and SJ cheer as Wingate runs onto the field. A chorus of BOOS comes from the stands behind them. MILFORD DAD (CONT'D) There's the Lions and here come the Christians! SJ turns and gives a dirty look -- LEIGH ANNE SJ, eyes forward! Sticks and stones... ON THE FIELD The ball is kicked off and Bobby, the Crusaders tailback takes it in at the five yard line. He makes one player miss then is dragged down by a swarm of defenders at the twenty. COTTON Let's go 0! The offense runs onto the field and huddles. The Milford defense waits, slapping each other and building to a frenzy. Number 66 from before is the defensive end on Michael's side. Wingate breaks huddle and #66 sees him. MILFORD #66 Look whose fat black ass I get to kick all night long. At the snap #66 sidesteps Michael and sacks the QB. MILFORD #66 (CONT'D) (as he walks by Michael) All night long, fat ass. All night long. IN THE STANDS Leigh Anne and Sean share a look and cheer on the team. (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Yellow Draft -04/15/09 83 124 124 CONTINUED: LEIGH ANNE Come on, Michael! ON THE FIELD Wingate breaks huddle and as they get into their stances #66 calls a switch. He moves inside and the linebacker moves outside. Michael looks at the move, confused. Hut! Tony, the Wingate QB starts to drop back but hands off the ball on a draw to BOBBY, the Oompaloompah. Michael, unsure which player to block, just stands there while they both crush Bobby. The Milford players high five and both give Michael a shoulder as they pass him. NEXT PLAY - BALL SNAPS Michael hits #66 square in the numbers, putting him on his heels. But he's quick as a cat and jumps to bat down a pass. REFEREE Fourth down ! The crusaders offense leaves the field. #66 follows behind Michael, taunting him. MILFORD #66 And don't come back unless you want me to embarrass your black ass! COTTON Get back to your own bench, 66! 66 laughs and struts away. Cotton goes straight to the ref. COTTON (CONT'D) Did you hear what he said? Are you gonna just let that kinda talk go?! REFEREE Ever heard of the First amendment, Coach? Get back to the sideline. Cotton takes a deep breath, then turns to Michael, who has been beside him the whole time. COTTON Look, son, 66 is quick, so just focus on his belt buckle. (MORE) (CONTINUED) 84 124 CONTINUED: 124 COTTON (CONT'D) Where it goes he goes. And block 'til the whistle blows. All right? Michael nods and takes a seat on the bench. Cotton hears something and realizes it is his cell phone. He looks at the number calling. and answers... COTTON (CONT'D) Hello?... IN THE STANDS Leigh Anne is on the phone. LEIGH ANNE Enough with the trick plays, Bert. Just run the dang ball. AND Bert, on the field, turns to the stands, shakes his head hangs up angrily. Behind the Tuohys, the Milford fans are in a frenzy. MILFORD DAD That's my boy Jimmy, number 66. He is kicking that blue gum's ass! Leigh Anne can't restrain herself. She rises, turns LEIGH ANNE Hey crotch mouth! Yeah, you! Zip it or I'll come zip it for ya! Sean pulls her back down to her seat. SI Sticks and stones? ON THE FIELD The Milford offense is moving the ball a draw play for ten yards. a screen pass for twenty. an option play - the QB pitches out and the tailback turns the corner and runs all the way to the end zone. The scoreboard reads: "HOME 0 VISITORS 7". ON THE SIDELINE (CONTINUED) 85 124 CONTINUED: 124 Bert Cotton gathers his forces. COTTON It's all right. Settle down. ON THE FIELD The Crusaders have the ball at the twenty. They break from the huddle, get over the ball and the play starts. It's a sweep left and Michael pulls to lead for Bobby. 66 fends off Michael and keeps moving, forcing a pileup near the sideline. Michael and Bobby are at the bottom of the pile. 66 extricates himself from the pile and gives Michael a little kick as a cherry on top. MILFORD #66 Big black pile of nigger crap! Cotton is nearby, hears this, races straight over to the Ref. COTTON Ref, you gonna do something about this?! He kicked my boy in the head and cussed him! The Ref throws a flag. COTTON (CONT'D) Thank you! REFEREE Unsportsmanlike conduct on Wingate! Fifteen yards. Shut up or you'll get another fifteen. COTTON What happened to the first Amendment?! Cotton throws his hat and another ref throws a flag. COTTON (CONT'D) This young man plays for my team and I will defend him like he's my own son! Against you or any other redneck sonofabitch! Michael watches, dumbfounded. He walks over to the livid Cotton and pulls him backwards, looks him in the eye. (CONTINUED) 86 124 CONTINUED: 124 MICHAEL Don't worry, Coach. I got your back. Cotton cools down. Michael trots out onto the field. Halfway there he stops, looks back at Cotton and smiles. REFEREE Second and 38. IN THE CRUSADERS HUDDLE Michael looks to Tony. MICHAEL Try Gap. TONY Coach called a pass. MICHAEL Gap. AT THE LINE OF SCRIMMAGE As Wingate lines up, 66 is at it again. MILFORD #66 Your coach always do your fightin' for you? He your Massa?- Michael gets in his stance and on the snap of the ball powers forward. We've never seen him so quick, neither has 66 who dips a hip to keep from being plowed over. The ploy rights 66 but the damage isn't over as Michael now has him "in the fit" grabbing his jersey, "between the tits." -- Bobby races through the hole and into the secondary -- Michael keeps pushing 66 back, picking up speed until 66 is airborne save every third step of Michael's when he touches a toe to the ground like a ballerina -- Bobby cuts to the sideline -- Michael is running full speed with 66 now and he keeps going past the sideline-- Past Collins and the rest of the cheerleaders while -- Bobby makes the opposite corner and heads for the end zone --- (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Yellow Draft 04/15/09 87 124 CONTINUED: 124 Si is on his feet, filming Michael -- Michael keeps going, past the track and toward the fence separating the field from the parking lot -- Just as Bobby races into the end zone -- Michael chucks 66 into the air. 66 hits the fence hard and lands in a heap. Michael turns and walks back to the field. As he passes Collins she gives him a high five. COLLINS Way to go big bro! A referee signals touchdown then notices Michael walking back and 66 lying slumped at the fence. The Ref throws a flag. COTTON Now what?! Was he holding? REFEREE Uh, no. COTTON Did he hit after the whistle? REFEREE I don't believe so. COTTON Then what's the flag for? REFEREE I dunno... . Excessive blocking. COTTON You're kidding me. The Referee ignores and returns to the field to assess the penalty. 66, now on his feet, limps back onto the field. Michael looks at him and 66's eyes go straight to the dirt. Cotton walks up to Michael. MICHAEL Sorry, Coach. I stopped when I heard the whistle. (CONTINUED) 88 124 124 CONTINUED: COTTON Where were you taking him, Mike? MICHAEL To the bus. It was time for him to go home. Cotton smiles proudly and slaps Michael on the ass. COTTON Attaboy, Michael Oher. Attaboy! IN THE STANDS -- Leigh Anne stands and turns to face the Milford fans LEIGH ANNE See number seventy-four? Well, that's MY son.! The Milford fans don't know what to make of this. Leigh Anne sits down with a self-satisfied smile. ON THE FIELD - A SEQUENCE: Tony throws a touchdown pass -- 66 submarines and Michael pushes him down with one hand -- Bobby is off to the races with a screen pass. Touchdown! --- And another touchdown -- Scoreboard reads: VISITORS 7 HOME 35 66 limps off the field, shamed and another player takes his place. The SCRUB, terrified, looks to Michael. AT THE SNAP the Scrub flinches and hits the dirt. The play goes to the other side and Michael reaches a hand down to help the Scrub up and to his feet. 12 5 12 5 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - SJ'S ROOM - DAY Si has the video of Michael up on his computer. A "burned DVD" pops out and SJ puts it in a distinctive case. 126 126 INT. TOM LEMMING'S RECRUITING OFFICE - DAY A hub of activity. Move past a SECRETARY answering phones -- (CONTINUED) 89 126 CONTINUED: 126 SECRETARY Tom Lemming Recruiting, please hold... Tom Lemming Recruiting, please hold... And land on TOM LEMMING, the foremost college talent forecaster in the country. TOM LEMMING . Did the monthly recruiting updates get mailed? SECRETARY Coach Saban wants his Fed Exed. TOM LEMMING Does he really think getting it one day early is gonna give LSU a leg up? An ASSISTANT hurries up. ASSISTANT Have you filled all the slots for the Army All Star Game? TOM LEMMING Yeah, why? The assistant hands over the distinctive DVD marked MICHAEL OHER - THE TERMINATOR! ASSISTANT You might want to open one up. 127 EXT. SEAN'S OFFICE - DAY 127 Lemming walks along with Sean and Coach Cotton toward Sean's office. TOM LEMMING Every year there are a dozen running backs in the high school ranks who will make it to the NFL. Quarterbacks maybe three or four. But left tackles, true left tackles, they're freaks, gifts from the gods. A great one only comes around every four or five years. Mike's the best I've seen in ten. (CONTINUED) 90 127 CONTINUED: 127 COTTON You're kidding? TOM LEMMING I don't kid about guys who'll get fifty million or more to play football. COTTON And you think that could be Michael? TOM LEMMING Oh, yeah. The embarrassing thing is it's my business to know every prospect in the nation but if you hadn't sent me that DVD I would have never heard of him. SEAN What DVD? I didn't send a DVD. TOM LEMMING You're Sean Tuohy, right? Sean "gets it", trades a look with Cotton. SEAN Si. 128 INT. WINGATE - SEAN'S OFFICE - DAY 128 They arrive at an empty office where Michael sits. He stands and Lemming eyes him like a piece of meat... TOM LEMMING Wow. Just wow. Lemming breaks out a measuring tape and smiles. 129 INT. WINGATE - SEAN'S OFFICE/HALLWAY/OUTSIDE THE DOOR - DAY 129 Sean and Bert stand outside and talk... COTTON Tom Lemming runs the biggest recruiting service in the nation. He practically created an industry. Every college coach subscribes to his newsletter. One word from him and... This is big, Sean. 91 130 INT. WINGATE - SEAN'S OFFICE - DAY 130 Lemming sits across from Michael... TOM LEMMING Mike, I came all the way from Chicago just to see for myself. And now that I have, I'd like to extend to you an invitation to play in the Army High School All American game at the end of the season. He places an application on the desk. Michael stares at it. 131 INT. WINGATE - SEAN'S OFFICE - DAY (A FEW MINUTES LATER) 131 The door opens and Lemming comes out shaking his head. TOM LEMMING I don't want to offend but... does Mike have special needs? SEAN Well, he eats a lot. TOM LEMMING No, I meant, is he mentally... off? SEAN No, no, he's just... COTTON Shy. Really shy. TOM LEMMING Because the only thing he said to me was "No." Said it three times; every time I asked him if he'd like to play in the Army All Star game. I get lobbied by every player, every father, every coach to get into this game. (hands over application) Let me know if he changes his mind. Lemming walks away. After he's gone, Michael emerges. SEAN Why didn't you fill out the application, Michael? (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Green Revision - 04/28/09 92 131 CONTINUED: 131 MICHAEL I don't wanna join the Army. Sean and Coach Cotton crack up. 132 INT. SABAN'S OFFICE - DAY 132 SERIES OF SHOTS INTERCUT WITH SJ'S VIDEO OF "THE PLAY" ON LEMMING'S WEBSITE: NICK SABAN watches on a computer -- 133 INT. TUBERVILLE'S OFFICE - DAY 133 TOMMY TUBERVILLE and other AUBURN coaches watch -- 134 INT. NUTT'S OFFICE - DAY 134 HOUSTON NUTT and ARKANSAS coaches watch --- 135 INT. HOLTZ'S OFFICE - DAY 135 LOU HOLTZ and SOUTH CAROLINA COACHES watch -- 136 INT. FULMER'S OFFICE - DAY 136 PHIL FULMER and other TENNESSEE coaches watch. PHIL FULMER I want him! I want him bad. 137 EXT. WINGATE - PARKING LOT - DAY 137 A CADILLAC races into the parking lot and hurriedly parks in a spot. Phil Ful mer, in a bright orange Tennessee shirt, jumps out and starts to trot toward 138 EXT. WINGATE -- FIELD -- DAY 138 Leigh Anne helps coach the cheerleaders, including Collins. LEIGH ANNE Kick higher, Collins. Point your toes! Leigh Anne notices Fulmer. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) What in the world?... (to the squad) Y'all keep practicing. (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Green Revision - 04/28/09 93 138 CONTINUED: 138 She strides toward the football practice field. 139 EXT. WINGATE - PRACTICE FIELD - DAY 139 Leigh Anne arrives to see a group of coaches, all wearing shirts and hats emblazoned with school logos. They chat and watch as the Wingate football team finishes calisthenics. One ASSISTANT COACH, from. Southern Miss, sees Fulmer racing up. SOUTHERN MISS COACH Shoot, man, Fulmer's here. I might as well go home. Fulmer smiles at the assembled coaches, shakes a few-hands. FULMER Drove all the way from Knoxville to come see for myself. Leigh Anne slides in near the group so she can eavesdro CLEMSON ASSISTANT COACH Heck, I drove from Clemson, that's nine hours! Bert cotton walks over, shakes Fulmer's hand, leaving the other coaches shaking their heads. COTTON Coach Fulmer, it's a real honor. FULMER Coach Cotton I been keeping an eye on your program. Y'all doing a fine job down here. Wouldn't be a bit surprised to see you coaching at the next level real soon. Cotton's smile tells us he'd like that a lot. FULMER (CONT`D) Is that him? Is that O'Hair? LEIGH ANNE It's Oher. Like a paddle in a boat. Fulmer notices Leigh Anne, grunts then turns back to Cotton. (CONTINUED) 94 139 CONTINUED: 139 FULMER If you could run him through a few drills, we'd sure appreciate it.. .Cotton gives Leigh Anne a look that says, "get out of here." She shakes her head -- "I'm not going anywhere." Cotton blows his whistle and the team approaches. COTTON Board drill. Big Mike and Jay Collis. Best on best. An Equipment manager lays out a plank and Jay Collis sighs and lines up, one foot on either side of the board. Michael slowly moves into position opposite him. The coaches all inch closer and crane their necks to see. Leigh Anne is now right in the middle of them. Fulmer gives her a look that says,,"Who the hell are you?" Cotton blows his whistle, Michael fires out and it's over in an instant. Collis is pancaked under Michael, who gets up and offers a hand. The coaches are frozen - as if they've witnessed a miracle. FULMER (almost to himself) Force equals mass times acceleration. Then, all at once, the coaches pull out their cell phones and start poking digits and jabbering: "You won't believe it!" "You gotta see this!" "He's a freak of nature!" The Clemson coach strides away. COTTON Where are you going, Coach? CLEMSON COACH Back to South Carolina. I've seen more than enough. If he can qualify with his grades you tell Michael Oher that Clemson wants him. FULMER Good luck with that, Brad! Fulmer smiles wide then turns to look once more at Michael. (CONTINUED) 95 139 CONTINUED: 139 Leigh Anne watches him watch Michael. 140 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - KITCHEN - DAY 140 Leigh Anne, distressed, has books and pamphlets spread out in front of her. Sean walks in, takes in the sight. LEIGH ANNE Did you know that to be eligible for a Division One scholarship Michael's gonna need a 2.5 GPA? SEAN Really? LEIGH ANNE His ACT is low and I don't see him doing any better if he retakes it. SEAN What's his GPA now? LEIGH ANNE 1.76. SEAN Not bad really, when you consider where he started. LEIGH ANNE He needs to make A's this year. (off Sean's laugh) I'm serious. And that might not even be enough. SEAN So he goes to Junior College. LEIGH ANNE Most inner city kids that go to JC drop out in a year. His shot at the pros would go out the window. SEAN Pros? Are we even sure he's gonna get college offers? She walks over to the answering machine, presses "Play." (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Green Revision - 04/28/09 96 140 CONTINUED: 140 ON THE MACHINE Hello, my name is Nick Saban and I'm the head football coach at Louisiana State University... (Leigh Anne fast forwards) Tommy Tuberville, Auburn University... (fast forwards again) We're very interested in having Michael over to Knoxville for a visit. SEAN Phil Fulmer, from Tennessee? LEIGH ANNE There are twenty more. She holds up a stack of mail - envelopes and Fed Exes. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) And these. Fifty of 'em. SEAN Any from Ole Miss? LEIGH ANNE They won't recruit until they hire a new coach. But none of it matters unless he makes his grades. SEAN So, what do we do? 141 INT. WINGATE - TEACHER'S LOUNGE - DAY 141 Leigh Anne speaks to the assembled teachers. LEIGH ANNE So here's the plan. E-mail me all assignments and let me know what Michael has to do to make an "A". There is laughter in the room. LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) Okay, fine, a B plus. And if anyone knows of a good tutor I'd love to hear about 'em. MRS. BOSWELL I think I know someone. The Blind Side - Green Revision -- 04/28/09 97 142 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - LIVING ROOM - DAY 142 Leigh Anne sits with MISS SUE, a no nonsense prospective tutor wearing an Ole Miss sweatshirt. LEIGH ANNE I understand that you applied for a teaching position at Wingate? MISS SUE I wasn't religious enough for 'em. I'm a spiritual person, Mrs. Tuohy, but I have certain,. shall we say... doubts. LEIGH ANNE I appreciate your honesty, Miss Sue. MISS SUE What's the situation with Michael? LEIGH ANNE He needs to do better in school. MISS SUE Obviously. But why the big push? LEIGH ANNE He's in line for a football scholarship if he gets his grades up. MISS SUE Is he considering Ole Miss? LEIGH ANNE He'd better be. MISS SUE I'd love to work with him. LEIGH ANNE When do you want to start? MISS SUE Mrs. Tuohy there's something you should know about me. I don't tell many people, but it's something I feel you should be aware of before you hire me. (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Green Revision - 04/28/09 98 142 CONTINUED: 142 LEIGH ANNE What's that? MISS SUE I'm a Democrat. 143 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - KITCHEN -- NIGHT (LATER) 143 Leigh Ann and Sean sneak looks at Miss Sue and Michael at the dining room table. AT THE TABLE Michael stares at a problem in Geometry book, then... MICHAEL I don't understand it. MISS SUE Yet. You don't understand it yet. How big is your head, Michael? MICHAEL Big. MISS SUE And what's in there? MICHAEL A brain. MISS SUE A brain. Full of knowledge - like a file cabinet with maps; shortcuts for figuring things out. You will learn this, Michael Oher because I'm here to help you use those maps and reach your destination. Like Sacagawea helped Lewis and Clark. MICHAEL Sacagawea? MISS SUE We'll get to that. And the history books have it wrong, but all you need to you know is that I'll get you there. Do you believe me? Do you trust me, Michael? MICHAEL Yes, Miss Sue. (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Green Revision - 04/28/09 98A 143 CONTINUED: 143 MISS SUE Try it again. He goes back to the book. SEAN AND LEIGH ANNE Sean shakes his head. (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Green Revision - 04/28/09 99 143 CONTINUED: 143 SEAN Who'd a thought we'd have a black son before we knew a Democrat. 144-145 OMITTED 144-145 146 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - FOYER - DAY 146 The doorbell RINGS and Leigh Anne fixes her hair before she opens it to -- NICK SABAN, a handsome man wearing a sport jacket and LSU rep tie. Leigh Anne is immediately taken with him. NICK SABAN And you must be Leigh Anne. LEIGH ANNE Yes, Coach Saban, that's me. Leigh Anne. Touhy. NICK SABAN Please, call me Nick. What an incredible home. Love the Windsor valances. LEIGH ANNE (VERY IMPRESSED) Thank you. You obviously have good taste. NICK SABAN Let's just say I appreciate quality. Michael and SJ walk in. NICK SABAN (CONT'D) (EYEING MICHAEL) And I know it when I see it. (offers a hand) Michael, I'm Nick Saban. And you must be SJ. I hear you have quite a jump shot, young man. LEIGH ANNE Nick, why don't you and Michael go into the living room to talk. MICHAEL Can SJ come? (CONTINUED) 100 146 CONTINUED: 146 SABAN Absolutely. I'll recruit the both of you. As they walk away, Collins approaches... LEIGH ANNE I find him extremely handsome. 147 INT. TUOHY HOUSE- LIVING ROOM - DAY (LATER) 147 Michael and SJ sit across from Saban. SABAN So, as soon as possible we'd like to get you down to Baton Rouge. We've got a great thing going, Michael and we plan on winning a bunch more National Championships. Whattaya' say, will you commit to a visit? Michael turns to SJ, who raises his hand. SI Can I ask a question? SABAN Sure. SJ My brother and me are very close. I'm worried that if he goes off to school I won't see him so... SABAN Go on. SI I guess I was just wondering how much access I'd have to him. Saban smiles at the kid's moxie. SABAN Tell you what, SJ. Michael comes to LSU I'll get you an all-access pass. How's that sound? SJ Sounds good. (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Green Revision - 04/28/09 101 147 CONTINUED: 147 SERIES OF SHOTS: 148 EXT. WINGATE - STADIUM - NIGHT 148 Michael pancakes an opponent -- 149 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - LIVING ROOM - DAY 149 Michael and Miss Sue study -- MISS SUE You know this stuff. Just be logical. 150 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - FOYER - DAY 150 HOUSTON NUTT walks in the Tuohy front door -- NUTT Hi, I'm Houston Nutt from Arkansas. 151 EXT. WINGATE - STADIUM - NIGHT 151 Michael pancakes another defender -- 152 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - LIVING ROOM -- DAY 152 Miss Sue high fives Michael after a quiz -- 153 INT. TUGHY HOUSE - FOYER - DAY 153 Phil Fulmer walks in, recognizes Leigh Anne FULMER This is a beautiful home, Ma'am. He is startled to see -- Michael, in briefs, racing down the stairs, carrying Collins, who is holding his pants away from him. 154 INT. WINGATE -- CLASSROOM - DAY 154 Mrs. Boswell grades Michael's paper, writes "B" at the top. 155 EXT. WINGATE - STADIUM - NIGHT 155 A SCOREBOARD: CRUSADERS 44 VISITORS 0 156 NEWSPAPER HEADLINE - DAY 156 A HEADLINE: CRUSADERS TO PLAY FOR PRIVATE SCHOOL CHAMPIONSHIP The Blind Side - Green Revision - 04/28/09 102 157 INT. WINGATE - LOCKER ROOM - NIGHT 157 Michael and Coach Cotton hold up a championship trophy 158 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - FOYER -- DAY 158 Coaches, one after another, enter the Tuohy home -- COACHES Hi, I'm Tommy Tuberville...Hi, I'm Lou Holtz... 159 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - LIVING ROOM - DAY 159 SJ asks them each his question --- SI What level of access can I expect? 160 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - LIVING ROOM - DAY 160 Coaches, one after another, up the ante ---- TOMMY TUBERVILLE Your own locker right next to Michael's. HOUSTON NUTT Access to the Letterman's Lounge. LOU HOLTZ (with a wink) A Gamecock headdress. Real feathers. PHIL FULMER We'll run arm in arm onto the field and you can do the coin toss thingie at the first game. SI Sounds real good. 161 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - KITCHEN - DAY 161 Michael studies with Miss Sue, in her Ole Miss sweatshirt. (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Yellow. Draft -- 04/15/09 103 161 CONTINUED: 161 MISS SUE Have you decided yet, Michael? MICHAEL No, Miss Sue. MISS SUE But you like Tennessee? (off his nod) It's a good school. Not at the academic level of Ole Miss but they do have an outstanding science department. You know one of the things they're famous for? (he shakes his head) They work with the FBI to study the effects of the soil on decomposing body parts. Michael is a bit lost. MISS SUE (CONT'D) When they find a body the police want to know how long they've been dead. The fine department at Tennessee helps them. They have lots of body parts - arms, legs, hands - from hospitals and medical schools. Do you know where they store them? (Michael shakes his head) Right underneath the football field. Michael's eyes widen a bit. MISS SUE (CONT'D) So, while it's fine and dandy to have 100,000 fans cheering for you, the bodies you should be worried about are right underneath the turf. Set to poke up through the ground and grab you. She raises a clawed hand (think "CARRIE") to make her point. Michael is completely freaked out by this. MISS SUE (CONT'D) But it's your decision where you play football. Don't let me influence you. The Blind Side Green Revision - 04/28/09 104 162 INT. TUGHY HOUSE - LIVING ROOM - DAY 162 Ole Miss Coach, ED ORGERON, talks with Leigh Anne. LEIGH ANNE Congrats on gettin' hired, Coach. ED ORGERON Thank yew, Ma'am. Ole Miss is my dream job. LEIGH ANNE Coach 0, you're coming a little late to the party but we're diehard Rebels so I'm gonna give you a frickin' road map, okay? ED ORGERON Yes 'm. LEIGH ANNE LSU is out. Everybody knows Saban's going to the NFL. So when he comes for his visit to Ole Miss, don't take him to some titty bar and give him tequila shots. He'll have nightmares for weeks. Feed him Italian - he likes Fettucine Alfredo - take him to a movie - but not Chainsaw massacre because he'll just cover his eyes - and put him to bed by ten. You got it? ED ORGERON Yes'm. What about Tennessee? LEIGH ANNE It breaks my heart but they're still in the hunt. Fulmer offered SJ a sweet deal. ED ORGERON I hear the kid can really pepper the gumbo. LEIGH ANNE He's his daddy's boy. 105 163 INT.. TUOHY HOUSE - LIVING ROOM - DAY (LATER) 163 Orgeron sits with Michael and SJ. ED ORGERON You a Ole Miss tackle, son. I'm buildin' my line, buildin' my team aroun' you. Make your parents proud, come to Oxford, get that sheepskin and help us win the SEC. Michael nods, turns to SJ. Before SJ can raise his hand -- ED ORGERON (CONT'D) And for you, Si, here's what I can do. At Ole Miss we have The Grove by the stadium. And the team walks it before the game, surrounded by thousands of fans. It's a sacred ritual. And I'm in front. SI ("that's it?") Seen it a thousand times. ED ORGERON Ever seen it from the front of the line? Next year, you and me -- leading the team. SI Tennessee offered to let me run on the field and flip the coin. ED ORGERON I'll throw in a sideline pass. Si considers this, smiles and nods. 164 INT. WINGATE - LIBRARY -- DAY 164 A press conference is under way. Photographers push to get a shot of -- Michael, at a table, stares at three caps -- Tennessee, LSU and Ole Miss. He smiles and selects an Ole Miss hat. 165 INT. PHIL FULMER'S OFFICE - DAY 165 Fulmer watches the press conference on TV. He tosses a piece of chalk against the wall. (CONTINUED) 106 165 CONTINUED: 165 FULMER This stinks to high heaven. 166 INT. WINGATE - BOB'S LITERATURE CLASS - DAY 166 Leigh Anne and Bob have a chat in the empty classroom. BOB I will not give a student a grade he, or she, doesn't deserve. LEIGH ANNE He needs a B. What's he gonna have to do to "deserve" that? BOB Right now Michael's doing C minus, D plus work. His best chance at improving is with the written essay at the end of the year. It counts for a third of his grade. LEIGH ANNE That's it. We're sunk. 167 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - FAMILY ROOM - NIGHT 167 Miss Sue works with Michael at the table. MISS SUE Why not write about "Great Expectations"? You're a lot like Pip. He was poor, an orphan and someone sort of found him. You should be able to relate to that. Michael shrugs. Sean is nearby, watching NBA basketball. MISS SUE (CONT'D) Fine, let's go through the reading list. But you have to pick one, Michael. (reading from list) "Pygmalion"... "A Tale of Two Cities"... "The Charge of the Light Brigade"... SEAN (almost to himself) "Half a league, half a league, half a league onward." I love that one. (CONTINUED) The Blind Side - Yellow Draft --04/15/09 107 167 CONTINUED: 167 MISS SUE Fine, you do this and I'll watch basketball. Miss Sue walks over, takes the remote from Sean, who rises. SEAN "All in the valley of Death rode the six hundred". They call LSU's stadium Death Valley because of this story. Alfred, Lord Tennyson is writing about Ole Miss-LSU. MICHAEL You're kidding? SEAN No. It's a great story. MISS SUE It's a poem. SEAN "Forward the Light Brigade!" That's like the offense. "Charge for the guns'he said." That's the end zone. "Into the Valley of Death rode the six hundred." He knows it by heart and even miss Sue is impressed. SEAN (CONT'D) "Forward the Light Brigade! Was there a man dÂ±smay'd? Not tho' the soldier knew someone had blundered." MICHAEL Someone made a mistake? SEAN' Yeah, their leader, their coach. MICHAEL Why would they go ahead if they knew he messed up? SEAN "Theirs not to make reply, theirs not to reason why, theirs but to do and die: Into the Valley of Death rode the six hundred." (CONTINUED) 108 167 CONTINUED: 167 It hits Michael. He takes a moment, looks right at Sean. MICHAEL They all gonna die, aren't they? SEAN Yeah. MICHAEL That's really, really sad. SEAN I think you just found something to write about. Michael opens his notebook, picks up a pen. MICHAEL (V.0.) Courage is a hard thing to figure. You can have courage based on a dumb idea or a mistake, but you're not supposed to question adults, or your coach, or your teacher because they make the rules. Maybe they know best but maybe they don't. SERIES OF REPEATED SHOTS: 168 EXT. HURT VILLAGE - REPEATED SHOT - DAY 168 Michael moves through the tough crowd. MICHAEL (V.0.) It all depends on who you are, where you come from. Didn't at least one of the six hundred guys think about giving up and joining with the other side? I mean, Valley of Death, that's pretty salty stuff. 169 EXT. WINGATE - REPEATED SHOT - DAY 169 Michael walks under the arch for the first time. MICHAEL (V.0.) That's why courage is tricky. Should you always do what others tell you to do? Sometimes you might not even know why you're doing something. I mean, any fool can have courage. 109 170 INT. LAUNDROMAT - REPEATED SHOT - NIGHT 170 Michael leans against the wall and tries to sleep. MICHAEL (V.0.) But honor, that's the real reason you either do something or you don't. It's who you are and maybe who you want to be. If you die trying for something important then you have both honor and courage and that's pretty good. 171 INT. WINGATE - BOB'S LITERATURE CLASS - DAY 171 Bob sits at his desk, reading Michael's. essay. As he turns to the last page... MICHAEL (V.0.) I think that's what the writer was saying. That you should try for courage and hope for honor. And maybe even pray that the people telling you what. to do have some, too. Bob, visibly moved, sets down the essay and smiles. 172 INT. WINGATE --- AUDITORIUM - FOYER - DAY 172 Graduation day and Sean sits beside an empty seat in the quick filling auditorium. He sees Leigh Anne marching up the aisle, a big smile on her face. she pushes down the row and plops down in the seat next to him. SEAN What? LEIGH ANNE 2.52. (off Sean's' look) Michael's final GPA. Got it off Paul's computer. He did it, Sean. He did it! Sean grins, then... SEAN Wait a minute. You broke into the principal's computer? (CONTINUED) 110 172 CONTINUED: 172 She ignores him and opens her program, letting Sean know that is precisely what she did. 173 INT. WINGATE - AUDITORIUM - DAY (LATER) 173 Graduation ceremonies. Paul Sandstrom reads the names and the graduates move across the stage to get their diplomas. As each student walks across the stage a BABY PICTURE of their is PROJECTED. SANDSTROM Michael Jerome Oher. Even though no one is supposed to clap, a spontaneous round of APPLAUSE gives Michael pause as he accepts his diploma. Projected behind him is a picture of the cutest African- American infant the world has ever seen. ON SEAN AND LEIGH ANNE SEAN Where'd you find a baby picture of Michael? LEIGH ANNE Scanned it off an Internet ad for a toddler boutique. (off his look) Tell a soul and I'll rip your tongue out. IN THE CROWD: The Tuohys, Big Tony, Miss Sue, Bob and the other teachers all clap. 174 EXT. WINGATE - OUTSIDE THE AUDITORIUM -.DAY 174 Michael, diploma in hand, shakes Sean's hand. Sean moves close, looks him in the eye. SEAN I want you to know something. You'n me, okay? (BEAT) I never believed you could do this. But you did. And I'm as proud of you as I am ashamed of myself. I should know better. I'll never doubt you again, Michael. Michael smiles, nods, gives Leigh Anne a little hug then raps knuckles with Si and high fives Collins. (CONTINUED) 111 174 CONTINUED: 174 LEIGH ANNE Excuse me young man, but I think I need a proper hug. He smiles and moves to her. Off their embrace 175-176 OMITTED 175-176 177-182 OMITTED 177-182 183 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - KITCHEN - DAY 183 Leigh Anne and Sean go over Ole Miss pamphlets with Michael. LEIGH ANNE You'll be living in Deaton Hall -- here. You'll have a meal plan and you'll go to Johnson commons to eat. SEAN Johnson Commons has all you can eat self-serve ice cream. MICHAEL As much as you want? SEAN Yep, that's how Mama put on her freshman ten. Leigh Anne rolls up a pamphlet and whacks him hard on her way to answer a RINGING PHONE. LEIGH ANNE Hello... This is Mrs. Tuohy... As she listens she gives Sean a look - "This isn't good". 184 INT. BUttDING HALLWAY - DAY 184 Leigh Anne walks with Michael. LEIGH ANNE They just want to ask you a few questions. You've got nothing to hide, Michael. They arrive at a door, open it. 112 185 INT. INTERROGATION ROOM - DAY 185 Sits Investigator Granger in the room we've seen before. She rises, professional, but not smiling. GRANGER Mrs. Tuohy? Mr. Oher? My name is Jocelyn Granger and I'm the Assistant Director of Enforcement for the NCAA. LEIGH ANNE Please call me Leigh Anne. Leigh Anne shakes her hand and she and Michael move to the chairs. GRANGER Mrs. Tuohy, I'd prefer to speak with Michael alone. LEIGH ANNE How long will this take? GRANGER Awhile. Michael starts rubbing his knees, nervous as hell. LEIGH ANNE Michael, I'll be outside. Leigh Anne pecks his cheek and exits, giving Michael one last look before she leaves. 186 EXT. BUILDING - DAY 186 Leigh Anne sits on a bench, talking on the phone. LEIGH ANNE I've got a bad feeling about this, Sean. This broad is tough. Oh,. Susie's on the other line. (CLICKS OVER) Hey... . what does the client want?... But that's tacky... You know what, fine, if she wants her living room to look like a bordello make it happen. She hangs up, checks her watch and looks toward the building. 113 187 INT. NONDESCRIPT GOVERNMENT-LOOKING ROOM - DAY 187 The interrogation is ongoing... GRANGER Your parents are friends with Coach Bert Cotton, correct? MICHAEL Coach is a good guy. GRANGER Were you aware that Coach Cotton is accepting a job at Ole Miss? (Michael shakes his head) And that this job offer came after you signed with them? (no response from Michael) Sean Tuohy, your legal guardian went to Ole Miss. MICHAEL He played basketball. GRANGER And Mrs. Tuohy attended Ole Miss as well. MICHAEL She was a cheerleader. GRANGER Is it safe to say that Ole Miss is their favorite school? (MICHAEL NODS) Do they like any other Universities? (MICHAEL SHRUGS) What about, say Tennessee? MICHAEL They can't stand Tennessee. GRANGER So they wouldn't be happy if you chose to play football there? MICHAEL No. GRANGER And your tutor... (CONTINUED) 114 187 CONTINUED: 187 MICHAEL Miss Sue. GRANGER Miss Sue is an Ole Miss grad, too. (MICHAEL NODS) Did Miss Sue try to persuade you to attend Ole Miss? (MICHAEL NODS) Did you know that the Tuohys make generous donations to Ole Miss? That even Miss Sue makes donations? That the:Tuohy's have a condo in Oxford so they can attend as many athletic events as possible? That, in fact, Sean and Leigh Anne Tuohy are by our definition "boosters." MICHAEL What's that mean? GRANGER A booster is someone with an abnormal interest in a school's sports. Someone who-contributes financially to the University's athletic program. Michael doesn't answer, just keeps rubbing his knees. Then comes the part we've heard before...' GRANGER (CONT'D) Mr. Oher, do you know why I'm here? (NO RESPONSE) Mr. Oher?... MICHAEL (V.0.) GRANGER Do you know, do you understand why I'm here? MICHAEL (V.0.) To... investigate. GRANGER Yes. To investigate. I'm here to investigate your odd... predicament. Do you find it odd? Your predicament? (MORE) (CONTINUED) 115 187 CONTINUED: 187 GRANGER (CONT'D) (NO RESPONSE) Michael?... MICHAEL Iono... she sifts through her briefcase, pulls out files, documents - a good bit of evidence for whatever trouble Michael is in. She sits back, stares at Michael, as if trying to figure him out. Michael can't meet her gaze. He looks out the window, rubs his knees some more. MICHAEL (CONT'D) Can I... can I leave now? GRANGER (WITH FINALITY) No. You can't. Michael's building up anxiety by the second. MICHAEL What do you want, ma'am? GRANGER What I want, what my job is, is to discern whether something untoward occurred in your recruitment to Ole Miss. MICHAEL Unto... GRANGER I want the facts. I need the truth. MICHAEL I didn't lie... GRANGER And I want to know what you think about all this. MICHAEL THINK ABOUT WHAT?! It's the first time we've ever heard Michael raise his voice. It echoes in the room. Granger lets it die before she leans forward and continues... (CONTINUED) 116 187 CONTINUED: 187 GRANGER The NCAA fears that with your recruitment a door might be opened that boosters from lots of schools in the south will become legal guardians for young athletes without means and funnel them to their Alma Maters. Michael still doesn't get it, shakes his head. GRANGER (CONT'D) I'm not saying I believe it and I'm not saying I don't, but there are many people involved with this case who would argue that the Tuohys took you in, fed you, clothed you, paid for your private education -- MICHAEL (almost to himself) No...no...no... GRANGER -- bought you a car and paid for a tutor all as part of a plan to insure that you played football for the University of Mississippi. Now Michael understands. He stares at the floor for a long time then quickly stands and makes for the door. GRANGER (CONT'D) Michael, we're not finished. But he's gone. 188 EXT. GOVERNMENT BUILDING - DAY 188 Leigh Anne sees Michael exit the building. Once he's outside he moves in circles, gesticulating and talking to himself. Leigh Anne races over -- LEIGH ANNE Michael, what's wrong? He looks at her, glares really; upset. MICHAEL Why'd you do it? (CONTINUED) 117 188 CONTINUED: 188 LEIGH ANNE What? MICHAEL All along you wanted me to go to Ole Miss. LEIGH ANNE Well, of course, but... MICHAEL Why did you do this for me?! LEIGH ANNE What? MICHAEL Everything! Was it for you or was it for me? Was it so I would go to school where you wanted?! Was it so I would do what you wanted?! LEIGH ANNE No, Michael... MICHAEL (points to building) That's what she thinks! Is she right?! (her own words) Don't you dare lie to me! Leigh Anne digests this, takes a breath... LEIGH ANNE Michael, look... I can see where, where some people might... Her inability, for the first time, to articulate, hits Michael in the face. MICHAEL I'm not stupid! He turns and walks away. LEIGH ANNE Michael?! But she doesn't move, just watches him go. 189 OMITTED 189 118 190 INT. TUGHY HOUSE - KITCHEN - NIGHT 190 Sean and Leigh Anne sit at the kitchen table while Collins and SJ pace in the living room. LEIGH ANNE (on her cell) Well if he comes by there let me know. Thanks. COLLINS (ON PHONE) Michael, please call me and let me know you're okay. LEIGH ANNE Text him SJ. SEAN Keep it light. Tell him you're gonna take his truck for a spin if he doesn't get in touch. SJ starts texting. Leigh Anne and Sean stare at each other. A191 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - SEAN AND'LEIGH ANNE'S BEDROOM - NIGHT A191 (LATER) Sean sits in bed and Leigh Anne paces. LEIGH ANNE I should have followed him. SEAN You had no way of knowing he'd disappear. LEIGH ANNE Was he right? (off Sean's look) What he said about us? SEAN Leigh Anne, be sensible. We gave clothes to a boy who had one pair of shorts. We gave him a bed. To hell with the NCAA, I'd do it again tomorrow. (CONTINUED) 119 A191 CONTINUED: A191 LEIGH ANNE What about the rest of it - all the stuff we did to make sure he got a scholarship? A scholarship to Ole Miss. SEAN He could go wherever he wanted, he knew that. LEIGH ANNE Did he? Did you ask him? 'Cause I know for sure I never did. Sean considers this, then beckons. SEAN Come here, honey. She moves to him. He puts his arm around her, kisses her forehead. LEIGH ANNE Am I a good person? (off his look) Not a joke. Not rhetorical. SEAN You're the best person I know. Everything you do, you do for others. LEIGH ANNE Why is that? SEAN (with a smile) I have not a clue. You obviously get some sick satisfaction from it. She looks at him. There's truth in his words. LEIGH ANNE Sean... what if he never comes back? 191 EXT. HURT VILLAGE - NIGHT 191 Michael makes his way toward Building "C", passing some of the same faces we've seen before. (CONTINUED) 120 191 CONTINUED: 191 Alton opens his door to make a transaction with an addict'and spots Michael. ALTON That you Big Mike? Get your ass in here. MICHAEL I'm looking for Moms. ALTON Your Mama? Oh, I seen Dee Dee around. She usually stop by for a taste around this time. Tell you what, I'll get you a forty and we'll chop it up 'til she get here. Michael hesitates. Alton smiles, beckons. 192 OMITTED 192 193 INT. HURT VILLAGE - ALTON'S APARTMENT - NIGHT 193 Shitty but with good electronics. There are maybe eight people in the apartment - partying, drinking, getting high. Michael steps inside. Alton points to a chair. A stoned out couple smokes on the adjacent couch. Next to them an INFANT cries in a broken down crib. In the other corner of the room sits David, the young man we met before. Michael nods and David nods back. Alton hands Michael a beer. ALTON It's good to see you, Big Mike. You lookin' fit. I heard you playin' some ball. MICHAEL Yeah. ALTON But you know that rich kid football ain't like the public school league. People packing knives in their socks. Back in the day I was a quarterback. You knew that, right? At MLK. (CONTINUED) 121 193 CONTINUED: 193 MICHAEL Yeah, I heard. (TO DAVID) You still playing ball over at the JC? DAVID Naw. ALTON He with me now! I'll open a spot for you, too. DAVID Got tired of going to class. Always somebody tellin' me what to do. ALTON Turn it up, bitch! David jumps up and cranks the volume on a RAP SONG until the beat is bouncing off the walls. Michael sips the beer; rubs his knees. ALTON (CONT'D) You stayin' to the other side of town, that's what Dee Dee said. Said you got a new Mama. She fine, too. I seen her when she come to see Dee Dee. MICHAEL She came here? ALTON She got any other kids? She got a daughter? (MICHAEL NODS) You tap that? Michael sets down the beer, rises to leave. ALTON (CONT'D) Where you going? Sit down. I wanna hear about your fine white sister. 'Cause I like me some mommy/daughter. MICHAEL Shut up. Alton steps in front of Michael, raises his hands --- (CONTINUED) 122 193 CONTINUED: 193 ALTON Shutup?You tellin' me to shut up?I'llcap your fat ass. Cap yourass,drive east and pay a visittoyour Cracker Mama and her SWEETLITTLE -- Michael shoves him hard. Alton unprepared for the force, flies back against the wall. On the ground he reaches in his belt for his gun, but just as he gets it out -- Michael slaps it away. He picks up Alton and throws him across the room. The party comes unhinged as Michael grabs Alton, holds him against the wall with one hand while pounding him with the other. Blood flies from Alton's face - eighteen years of subdued rage coming out in seconds. TWO OTHER GUYS grab Michael from behind and one -- STICKS A GUN IN MICHAEL'S TEMPLE Michael screams like a banshee, spins, grabs them and tackles them over the couch. An errant round FIRES into the ceiling. A table flies and the crib smashes. Michael looks to David, frozen in the corner, then over to the SCREAMING child on the floor. He grabs his head and heaves, trying to make it all stop - the music, the screams, the crying. The shots PULSE to the music and. are INTERCUT WITH: 194 EXT. HURT VILLAGE - DAY 194 PULSING FLASHBACK IMAGES MICHAEL, AGE SEVEN, and several half brothers and sisters in front of Hurt Village as Child Protective Services herds them away from Denise Oher. She's screaming, the kids are crying. Michael breaks away and runs to Denise. SEVEN YEAR OLD MICHAEL MAMA!! 1 1 He grabs her waist and is pulled away by an officer. FLASHBACK ENDS. BACK TO SCENE AT... The Blind Side - Yellow Draft -- 04/15/09 123 195 INT. ALTON'S APARTMENT - NIGHT 195 Michael looks at the blood on his hands and shirt and stumbles out of the room, terrified. 196 INT. TUOHY HOUSE - HALLWAY/MICHAEL'S BEDROOM - NIGHT 196 Leigh Anne stands at the doorway to Michael's empty, very neat room. She stares, missing everything about him. 197 INT. LEIGH ANNE'S CAR - DAY 197 Leigh Anne drives around, looking for Michael at Wingate. 198 EXT. WEST SIDE OF MEMPHIS STREET - DAY 198 The streets of west side of Memphis. And finally -- 199 EXT. HURT VILLAGE - DAY 199 Leigh Anne approaches the complex. Alton, his face bandaged, sits on the stoop with his crowd. A mother holds the unharmed baby. ALTON He gone. Leigh Anne stops, looks to Alton. ALTON (CONT'D) But you tell him I'll be seeing him around. You tell him he'll get his. LEIGH ANNE Michael was here? ALTON Last night. Sneaked me then took off like a little bitch. So you tell him, sleep with one eye open. Yod'hear me, bitch?' Leigh Anne steps closer to Alton, stares him down. LEIGH ANNE No, you hear me, bitch. You threaten my son you threaten me. You so much as cross downtown you'll be sorry. I'm in a prayer group with the D.A., I'm a member of the NRA and I am always packing. (CONTINUED) 124 199 CONTINUED: 199 She taps her tiny purse. Alton laughs. ALTON What you got in there, a .22? You got yourself a Saturday Night Special? LEIGH ANNE And it shoots just fine all the other days, too. She turns on her heels and strides to her car. 200 INT. LEIGH ANNE'S CAR - DAY 200 When she gets in she's so nervous she hyperventilates. Her phone RINGS and she opens the tiny purse revealing nothing more than a wallet and the phone. She recognizes the number and answers... LEIGH ANNE Michael?!!! MICHAEL'S VOICE Mama?... 201 EXT. LAUNDROMAT - DAY 201 The one where Michael spent the night. He sits inside. Leigh Anne pulls up, stops and they lock eyes. MICHAEL (V.0.) You think the police gonna come and get me? 202 EXT. CURB - DAY 202 Leigh Anne sits on the curb with Michael. LEIGH ANNE I'd imagine the last thing anybody at Hurt Village wants is cops snooping around. (after a beat) I swore I'd never ask but... how'd you make it out of there, Michael? MICHAEL When I was little and something awful was happening, my Mama would tell me to close my eyes. (MORE) (CONTINUED) 125' 202 CONTINUED: 202 MICHAEL (CONT'D) She was tryin' to keep me from seeing her do drugs or other bad things. And she'd say, "keep 'em closed till I say so." And then when she was finished or the bad things were over she'd say, "now when I count to three, you open your eyes and the past is gone, the world is a good place, and it's all gonna be okay." LEIGH ANNE You closed your eyes. He nods. She shakes her head, amazed at the kid. They stare out at the street, then... LEIGH ANNE (CONT'D) You know, when I was driving all over Kingdom Come looking for you I just kept thinking about one thing. (BEAT) Ferdinand the bull. Everyone assumed because he was big that he wanted to fight in the ring. But he just wanted to sit under a tree and smell the flowers. (right at him) I know I should have asked this a long time ago but do you even wanna play football? I mean, do you even like it?' Michael considers this. MICHAEL I'm pretty good at it. LEIGH ANNE Yeah, you are. (A BEAT) Sean and I have been talking and Michael, if you're gonna accept a football scholarship we think it should be from Tennessee. (off his look) And I promise you I will be at every game cheering for you. MICHAEL Every game? (CONTINUED) 126 202 CONTINUED: 202 LEIGH ANNE But I will not wear that gaudy orange of theirs because it's not in my color wheel. MICHAEL You want me to go to Tennessee? LEIGH ANNE I want you to go wherever you want. It's your decision, Michael. It's your life. MICHAEL What if I wanted to flip burgers? She takes this in, swallows hard and LEIGH ANNE Your decision; your life. Michael smiles. MICHAEL Okay. LEIGH ANNE Okay, what? 203 INT. NONDESCRIPT GOVERNMENT-LOOKING ROOM - DAY 203 Michael is at another session with Jocelyn Granger. MICHAEL I'm sorry I left the other day. GRANGER You were pretty upset. MICHAEL You ask a lot of questions. GRANGER I'm trying to get to the bottom of this. MICHAEL But all the questions you asked were about why everybody else wanted me to go to Ole Miss. (CONTINUED) 127 203 CONTINUED: 203 GRANGER Okay... MICHAEL You asked about everybody but me. You never asked why I wanted to go there. GRANGER Alright, fine, Michael... why do you want to go to Ole Miss? MICHAEL It's where my family goes to school. It's where they've always gone to school. Granger considers this, stares at Michael, then almost, just almost, smiles. DISSOLVE TO: 204 EXT. OLE MISS DORM - DAY 204 Cars are unloaded as parents and siblings move their kids into the dorm. Tearful good-byes and lots of picture taking. Leigh Anne and.Sean walk from the dorm toward the car, giving last words of advice. SJ and.Collins are there, too. LEIGH ANNE College is going to be a different experience for you. There are lots of distractions. SEAN Just have fun. LEIGH ANNE There'll always be some nimrod in the dorm who wants to play video games all night, or goof off on the internet. SEAN You're gonna have a great time. I know I did. Leigh Anne gives Sean a look - "You're not helping." (CONTINUED) 128 204 CONTINUED: 204 LEIGH ANNE You'll spend lots of time at practice which means you have to be very dedicated to your studies. MISS SUE (O.S.) Relax, Mama. Miss Sue walks up carrying papers. MISS SUE (CONT'D) Just got back from the library where I reserved a private cubicle for the semester. (hands sheets to Michael) Here's your class schedule and our study hall hours. She reaches in her purse for her keys. MISS SUE (CONT'D) Now, if y'all don't mind I'm gonna go move into my new apartment. She walks away. LEIGH ANNE Thank you, Miss Sue. MISS SUE Yeah, yeah, yeah... Sean and Michael and SJ eye a GROUP OF ATTRACTIVE COEDS sashaying past. SJ does a little dance move and laughs. SEAN Have a lot of fun. Leigh Anne notices their looks. LEIGH ANNE Michael Oher, you listen to me. I want you to enjoy yourself but you need to know that if you get a girl pregnant out of wedlock I will climb in the car, drive here to Oxford and cut off your penis. SI (sotto: to Michael) She means it. (CONTINUED) 129 204 CONTINUED: 204 MICHAEL Yes ma'am. Leigh Anne gives Sean a look that says, "let's get on the road." Sean offers a hand; Michael shakes it. Collins high fives him. SJ offers a fist; Michael knocks it. Leigh Anne, tearing up, nods and gives Michael a quick hug. MICHAEL (CONT'D) Thank you, Mama. Overwhelmed, she turns for the car with a little wave. LEIGH ANNE The 78'll be a parking lot. We should go. She gets inside and closes the door for privacy. Sean, SJ, Collins and Michael stand there, watching her cry. MICHAEL Why does she always do that? SEAN She's an onion, Michael. You have to peel her one layer at a time. Michael walks over to the car, knocks on the window. She rolls it down, dabbing tears from her eyes. LEIGH ANNE What? MICHAEL I need a proper hug. She gets out of the car and holds him for a long time. DISSOLVE TO: SERIES OF STILL PHOTOS: 205 NEWSPAPER HEADLINE 205 "LOCAL YOUTH SHOT AND KILLED" LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE I read a story the other day about a boy from the projects. No daddy, in and out of foster care. (MORE) (CONTINUED) 130 205 CONTINUED: 205 LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE (CONT'D) He'd been killed in a gang fight at Hurt Village. 206 NEWSPAPER PHOTO 206 A newspaper photo of a dead boy from the.projects. Then another headline, another young, black face. Another and another, until the last headline shows a photo of David, Alton's minion - his face full of shining promise. LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE In the last paragraph they talked about his superb athletic skills and how different his life might have been if he hadn't fallen behind and dropped out of school. He was twenty-one years old the day he died. It was his birthday. 207 STILL PHOTO OF HURT VILLAGE 207 Lonely, falling apart. LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE That could have been anyone. It could have been my son, Michael. 208 STILL PHOTO OF OLE MISS CAMPUS 208 Beautiful on a fall day. And then THE STILL COMES TO LIFE and Michael, books in hand, ENTERS FRAME walking. It's like the other Michael/crowd shots with one difference - this time he moves at the same speed as everyone else. LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE But it wasn't. And I suppose I have God to thank for that. God and Lawrence Taylor. A209 INT. SEAN'S CAR - DAY A209 As the family drives home from Ole Miss, we notice that Leigh Anne is very still. And very content. She closes her eyes. FADE TO BLACK. LEIGH ANNE'S VOICE One Mississippi... 131 209 SUPERSCRIPT: 209 Michael Oher was a freshman All-American in his first season and, with help from Miss Sue, made the Dean's List. Collins followed in her Mom's footsteps and became a cheerleader at Ole Miss. Sean and Leigh Anne still live in Memphis. FADE UP ON: 210 EXT. THE GROVE -- DAY 210 Game day and Coach 0 and SJ walk together, leading the team to the stadium. 211 SUPERSCRIPT: SJ RECEIVED EVERYTHING HE WAS PROMISED. 211 FADE TO BLACK.