900 Miles

There was a time when heroics were a daily feature of life, even for a child. This is a screenplay about a mother, son, and daughter who walk 900 miles to escape the holocaust. Sixty years later, their heirs still deal with the consequences. Everything about this story is fiction, except for the war, the walk, the heroics -- and the scars. More

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About James Lockhart Perry

A note on the screenplays: Everything I ever learned about the craft came from reading screenplays generously uploaded to the internet by far more talented writers than me. So I am returning the favor here. But free of charge does not mean free. Please respect the licensing requirements.

James Lockhart Perry was a Texan born on Valentine's Day in 1892 into the wilds and woolies of East Texas, yet he never worked the oilfields that erupted all around and became so potent a symbol of the brash, lawless state the rest of us recognize. Daddy Jim, as he came to be known, patiently farmed the rice fields, married the fine-looking Missouri-bred schoolteacher Dora Mae, and built a beautiful yellow house in the tiny hamlet of Markham for his three lovely daughters Adrienne Lavonne, Audrey Louvelle, and Anita Lorraine. He also built a legend in his lifetime for tireless inner strength and placid outer humility.

So the author's use of Daddy Jim's name for a pseudonym serves as homage as much as anything to the towering gentle spirit of that pioneer and his brave people. The only historical connection Daddy Jim and the author share is that Daddy Jim died on the author's twelfth birthday, thirty-three days before John Fitzgerald Kennedy set off with Jackie of the pink pillbox hat for Dallas. And the fact that both author and rice farmer have loved Daddy Jim's granddaughter to distraction.

The smartest thing the author ever did, apart from quite literally forcing the granddaughter to marry him, was to buy her a camera. Since then the couple has stretched the meandering, shutterbugging progression of their lives around the globe, until twenty years ago when they finally settled down on the beach south of Los Angeles, California. Where the surf rolls in with the same steady, timeless rhythm of the rice waving in the breeze of Daddy Jim's long vanished fields.

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