Draft- Far From Wall Street- Part One

NOTE: This is a VERY rough draft of a script I’ve been working on. It’s only the first few pages and I will post the rest in pieces due to the size. It’s very loosely based in some reality. I come from a very white collar background; I’ve spent the entirety of my professional life in offices and I can honestly say it has been the best times of my life. Aside from my wife and family, my job is the best part of my life, and I wanted to create a potential series based around these experiences. Again, this not auto biographical, but there’s real world inspiration.

FADE IN

INT. CONFERENCE ROOM- EARLY MORNING

A gorgeous board room containing ten eager twenty something men dressed in refined business wear sit and listen anxiously to a man in his forties at the front of the board room addressing the group. One young man Calvin, sits and glances around the room attempting to mask his boredom. The man in his forties continues speaking with a general lack of interest.

MAN:

After one month here at First National, half of you will be fired.

This grabs Calvin’s attention whose eyes dart to the front of the room. The man continues speaking in a ‘matter of fact’ tone.

MAN:

This may come as a surprise to some of you, but I’m sorry to say, that’s just the way things work here.

A random young man from the group raises his hand.

YOUNG MAN:

Excuse me sir, but if half of us are going to be leaving, then why did the company hire ten new employees? Why not just hire five?

MAN:

Because the fact is, not all of you are going to succeed here. The company has found that, on average, from every ten new employees, only five have what it takes to be competent associates. So why hire two people when you can hire one that can handle the workload of two? This is a cutthroat industry and the only way to guarantee a position at this company is to make as much money as possible. I’m not going to lie to any of you, this job has the potential to ruin lives. I’ve seen a lot of people come through here who end up folding shirts at the mall only a few weeks later, but you’ve got to be willing to gamble your livelihood on the fabulous prizes. Any questions?

No one says anything. The room is filled with terrified looks and enthusiastic grins.

MAN:

Perfect, if you’ll all follow me I will get you set up with your work center.

The man leads the group of young men to a pair of ornate double doors. He throws the doors open and the scene on the other side resembles a country amid a civil war. Dozens of men and women are standing and shouting on their phones while others attempt to crouch under their desks for silence. Papers fly, people curse, and bodies run by in pure chaos.

MAN:

Welcome to the Call Center gentlemen, your new home.

The man starts dispersing the group amongst the vast floor of madness. The room is not divided by offices or cubicles instead, it’s a series of adjoining desks divided into separate communes amongst a wide open floor. The group gradually thins until Calvin and one other guy are left.

MAN:

Alright, you two are going to be working here in Lot F, find an open desk and get situated.

The man wanders off and disappears amidst the insanity. Calvin sets his backpack down on the first empty space he can find and the second young man sits at the opposite end of the Lot. The man next to Calvin is speaking on the phone in a calm manner, Calvin tries to not look like he’s listening as he slowly empties his bag but he can’t help but listen to this man talk; his demeanor doesn’t match the rest of the office, he’s cool, relaxed, and talks slow. Calvin notices the placard on the man’s desk it reads “Mark Cather.”

MARK:

(On the phone)

Hey, I completely understand sir, and I apologize tremendously for the inconvenience, but what I’ve done for you today I, I have waived the late fee, but I have to tell you, that this balance will need to be paid in full before the end of the month or else I won’t be able to waive the next fee.

(Listening to customer)

Uh huh, well that sounds great sir, if there’s nothing else I can do for you, you have a great day, and thank you for choosing First National.

Mark hangs up and turns his chair towards Calvin. Calvin averts his eyes and stares at his belongings on the desk hoping Mark didn’t notice him watching.

MARK:

(Extending hand)

Hey! A new guy, how’s it going man? I’m Mark, looks like we’re going to be work mates. What’s your name bro?

CALVIN:

(Shaking hand)

I’m Calvin.

MARK:

That’s awesome man, you excited to be here?

CALVIN:

Yeah, definitely man, I mean, I’m nervous but it’s a good kind of nervous.

MARK:

(Chuckles)

Yeah I hear you man, this place still scares the hell out of me, but trust me, things only gets easier from this point forward.

CALVIN:

I think the guy that trained us would disagree with you.

MARK:

Who, Frank? Forget about that guy. Frank has been here longer than anybody and he still gets passed over for managerial positions, he’s a miserable dick. This place isn’t nearly as bad or as scary as Frank would like you to believe. Did he tell you guys about how half of you are going to get fired over the next month?

CALVIN:

Yeah he did. Is that not true?

MARK:

No, it’s definitely true, but that’s only because most people can’t handle the pressure that comes along with this job. Take a look around. You see all these people? They’re all going to die, and I’m willing to bet that most of those deaths are going to be from something stress related. Once you realize that, nothing seems that important. Here’s the fact about this job, yes sales are not only important they’re mandatory, but they should never be your number one priority. Your number one priority should be customer service. You see, this place is basically just an elaborate customer service center, except we’re all dressed much better, and as long as you can keep the customers happy, then you’ll be fine.

CALVIN:

What about the sales?

MARK:

Most people prefer to be aggressive and shove every product and service our bank offers down everyone’s throats, but me, I prefer to keep the customers satisfied and the sales come naturally. You need to let the customer come to their own conclusions. We are only here to provide information to help them make the best decision possible. The customer will be happy, you’ll save yourself a couple hospital bills, and the company will still make money, you won’t be the number one salesman but it will surely be enough to keep your job. Have you ever heard the expression ‘never take no for an answer?’

CALVIN:

Yeah.

MARK:

Well forget it, completely erase it from your memory, that’s how rapists think and we’re not here to rape anyone. Are you a rapist Calvin?

CALVIN:

Oh God no!

MARK:

Well that’s good because I’ve got to tell you, I’m not comfortable working in close quarters with a rapist. But anyway, over the time I’ve been here, I’ve altered the phrase to ‘never take maybe for an answer.’

CALVIN:

Maybe?

MARK:

Yes, maybe. You see, maybe usually means probably, the customer just needs a little more information to make an educated decision, and that’s what I do. I provide a stress free, educated environment for everyone that contacts me.

CALVIN:

That makes a lot of sense. Why don’t more people act like that?

MARK:

Because I don’t make many sales this way. If the customer doesn’t feel pressured then they don’t feel like they need whatever it is you’re trying to sell. They need to believe that they need whatever it is your talking, and in a pressure free environment, the need disappears. So while my commission checks are smaller I like to believe my soul remains intact for not selling someone something they definitely do not need.

CALVIN:

Morals over money.

MARK:

Exactly. I think we’re going to get along. Let me ask you something, you get high?

CALVIN:

Um, what? Like, on drugs?

MARK:

Well I’m not talking about getting high on life. Yeah bro, like weed.

CALVIN:

Um, yeah, sorry, should we be talking about this here? I mean, someone could hear us.

MARK:

(Chuckling)

No one cares about that here. Didn’t you think it was weird that you didn’t have to take a drug test?

CALVIN:

I guess I never really thought about it.

MARK:

Like I said man, this is a stressful job, I don’t know a single person here that doesn’t do drugs, and we’re not just talking about weed bro, if you take a lap around the office you’ll come across at least a dozen people doing enough shit to stock a pharmacy, a pretty sketchy pharmacy, but you get the idea.

CALVIN:

You can’t be serious.

MARK:

Oh yes I can I’m willing to bet that half the people here right now are fucked up right now on any assortment of narcotics, and I suppose booze as well, but we don’t really count that around here.

CALVIN:

You don’t count alcohol?

MARK:

Of course not. Alcohol is categorized with coffee and water to these people. It’s just something to get you through the day.

CALVIN:

So, no one cares?

MARK:

Hell no! Here, watch this.

Mark stands up and peers over the crowded office and yells as loud as he possibly can.

MARK:

Hey Will! Will!

A man’s head pokes up through the crowd about twenty feet away.

WILL:

What do you want Mark?!

MARK:

(Shouting)

Do you want to get high at lunch with the new guy?

WILL:

No, I can’t, I have to work through lunch today. What about after work?

MARK:

Alright, sounds good bro, we’ll talk later!

Mark sits back down and sees Calvin, whose now slack jawed and speechless.

MARK:

So, want to get high after work?

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