Feet of Clay

Original Release Date: September 4, 2001

Teleplay by:
Jim Hamilton

Excerpts from:
"September 7, 1983" by Sary

"Place Your Vote!" Result:
Which show is going to have Sally as executive producer?

Estimated Runtime:



Previously on "Sports Night on CSC"...

Dana and Natalie are walking through the newsroom.

Natalie: So what do you think?

Dana: About?

Natalie: You know... the new chief executive.

Dana: I know nothing about her Natalie.

Donna Kendrick, Calvin Trager, Isaac, and Sam, are in a conference room.

Donna: Sam, I need somebody who generates positive results. I need somebody who is strong-willed and has a superior resumé. I am currently looking for a Director of Program Development, and I would like to offer you the position.

Sam is surprised.

Isaac: It's quite an honor, Sam.

Calvin: This is the position which will give you the authority and prestige you deserve.

Sam: Thank you for the offer.

Donna: Now you don't have to accept this offer right now. You can think about it and get back to me. I do see you has someone who can help mold this network for years to come.

Sam: Years to come?

Calvin: Definitely.

Sam sits and thinks about it for a moment.

Sam: Isaac Jaffee asked me to come here and help Sports Night get their ratings up and keep them up. That is all I came here to do, and that is all I want to do.

Sam and Isaac are sitting in Isaac's office.

Sam: Let me guess. If I turn down this offer, the network will probably eliminate my position with Sports Night.

Isaac: My instincts says they might.

Sam: And, of course, they ask you to offer it to me instead of offering it themselves.

Isaac: They've already been slapped in the face once. They don't want it to happen again.

Sam: I guess the correct thing to say right now is I'll place it under consideration.

Isaac: Please do, Sam.

Jeremy and Natalie are in the studio.

Jeremy: I'm going to say this because it needs to be said. We need to see other people. We need to date other people. We can't carry on like this.

Natalie: We can't decipher if we are lovers or just friends.

Jeremy: Exactly.

Natalie: We need a clean break.

Jeremy: That's precisely what I was thinking.

Natalie: I'm not going back to Ohio.

Jeremy: And I'm not going to quit this job.

Natalie: Let's just keep our relationship on a professional level.

Jeremy: I'm with you.

Natalie: Once we sort things out, we'll notify each other.

Jeremy: Perfect.

Dan and Casey are in their office. Dan looks upset as he is reading a note.

Dan: What is this?

Casey: It's my stuff.

Dan: No. It's from Isaac. Bill Cassady from ESPN? Ted Green at Fox? What's going on?

Dan: Those are people from personnel at those networks. Why is Isaac giving you those numbers?

Casey takes a deep breath.

Casey: For opportunities.

Dan: Wait. You're not leaving the network, are you?

Casey stares at Dan.

Dan: They're not giving you a contract? Casey, tell me this isn't true.

Casey: It is.

Dan: No. Tell me this isn't true.

Executives Donna Kendrick, Richard Stephenson, and James Henderson are in a conference room with Isaac.

James Henderson: We've been talking about expanding the presence of Sports Night- at least, in name. We're thinking of adding a 12 P.M. and a 6 P.M. broadcast.

Donna: They'll be half-hour broadcasts, so our feature program will still be from the eleven to midnight hour.

Richard Stephenson: Good.

Isaac: We've been talking about doing what we can to keep this team intact. I think we all feel that this core team needs to be together, which will allow us to expand the Sports Night franchise.

Casey is wearing a jacket as he walks into Anthony's. He walks up to the bar and catches the attention of Jack, the bartender.

Casey: Where is he?

Jack points to the other side of the restaurant.

Jack: He's over there- trying to get a drink. I told him I don't serve drug addicts.

Casey is sitting at a table with Marcus.

Marcus: I was... I was supposed to go to my treatment program today... I guess I didn't make it. My will power isn't as strong as I think... thunk... thought.

Casey: Are you trying to get fired?

Marcus: Me? No, Casey. Me no get fired. Me and Isaac? We're like this.

Casey: Let's go somewhere else.

Casey gets up and out of the booth.

Marcus: Someplace that has drinks?

Casey helps Marcus out of the booth.

Casey: Yeah, let's go someplace. Let's walk and find a place for you.

Casey escorts Marcus out of Anthony's.

The three executives and Isaac are in a conference room.

Donna: So this is what we are proposing for the next six months.

Isaac glances at the pages.

Isaac: This isn't what I asked for.

Elliott runs into the control room.

Elliott: Dana?!

Dana: What is it, Elliott?

Elliott: Isaac's just collapsed in the hallway!


The newsroom is bustling with activity this evening. People walk through the newsroom focused on their individual tasks. Natalie is going from desk to desk and keeping track of their progress. Jeremy is typing at his computer. Dave and Will are talking about the sequence of graphics for tonight's show. As you pan around the room, you see Dana and Sally walking side-by-side.

Sally: Since Kim is a new executive producer, I hope she feels she can come to me about any issues involving her new position.

Dana: Why have you been telling me this, Sally?

Sally: You have worked with Kim since the inception of Sports Night, and I know she will come to you first if she has any problems.

Dana: Well, I know she will.

Sally: And I realize that the new 6:30 broadcast is going to pose challenges for her and the network, so it is in everybody's best interest to make sure it is the best show it can be.

Dana: Okay.

The two walk over to the wall, and Dana pulls out a video tape. She reads the spine.

Sally: And the fact that I have much experience producing my own show and the fact that I have been nominated and won awards should give her the confidence to confide to me any problems she might incur. I hope you could pass this information to Kim. We are one big family and she needs to know that we are all here to help.

Dana pulls out a second tape, and the two start walking through the newsroom once again.

Dana: One big family?

Dana laughs.

Sally: Yes.

Dana: Since you have concerns and are so willing to help, I think you should go to Kim with this.

Sally: I don't have a problem with Kim being the executive producer. It's a wonderful opportunity for her.

Dana: I agree. Go. Share with Kim your wisdom.

Sally: I mean, just because I wanted the position, does not mean I hold ill feelings toward her. In fact, I understand where the executives were coming from on this. It is a new time slot for a broadcast, and they feel they need to experiment and see if Kim can stand on her own. They already know I run a tight ship, so it is only best to see if Kim can handle the new responsibilities.

The two stop next to the doors.

Dana: That's mighty professional of you, Sally. (turns her head) Elliott?

Elliott walks by, holding some papers in his hand.

Elliott: Wood struck out the side in the 7th. He now has 12 K's.

Dana: Thanks. (turns back toward Sally) Is there anything else?

Sally: Yes-

Dana: Dan! I need you to trim 10 seconds off UCLA!

Dan waves from the other side of the room.

Dan: Got it!

Sally: Yes, Dana. I was hoping to use the piece on the Buccaneers' Doug Nettles for my show.

Natalie walks up to the two, and Dana hands her the video tapes.

Dana: (to Sally) So were we. (to Natalie) The first tape is from the game over the weekend. The second tape is from the rest of the preseason.

Sally: You wanted to save the piece for my show?

Natalie: What piece?

Dana: Doug Nettles.

Natalie: I thought we were using it.

Dana: We are.

Sally: So, you'll have it done?

Dana: If it will be ready by 11, surely it will be ready for your 2 A.M. show.

Natalie: The last I checked, Jeremy was finishing up on it.

Dana: Great.

Sally: Okay. When I earlier checked with the assignment desk, they said the status was unknown.

Dana: We'll have it ready.

Sally: But the assignment-

Dana: Sally, I'm sorry I did not go to the assignment desk and personally keep Sara abreast on the piece.

Sally: So, it will be ready then?

Dana: We'll have it ready.

Natalie: I think Jeremy wanted Chris to touch up the graphics, though.

Dana: That's fine. That will take... what... two seconds?

Natalie: Knowing Chris, one-and-a-half.

Sally: So, it will be ready then?

Dana starts using sign language as she speaks.

Dana: We... will... have... it... ready.

Sally smiles.

Sally: Great.

Sally cuts into the studio.

Dana: Natalie, there are days...

Natalie: Tell me about it.

Dana and Natalie down the hallway.

Dana: I just wish I had an axe, then I could cut her down at her knees.

Natalie: Make it at her waist- bring her down to my eye level.

Dana: Do me a favor and double-check with Jeremy about the Nettles piece.

Natalie: I was planning on it.

Dana: I really don't want Sally getting under my skin-

Natalie: She already has.

Dana: I know Natalie. She's just... oooofff.

Natalie: Precisely.

Dana: Okay. You'll check with Jeremy, and that will be great. Run down in... (looks at her watch) ...six minutes.

Natalie: See you later.

Dana continues down the hallway as Natalie goes into the newsroom.

Natalie: Run down in five minutes!

Natalie walks over to Jeremy's desk. Jeremy is working at his computer.

Natalie: Jeremy? Dana wanted me to double-check-

Jeremy: The Buccaneers?

Natalie: Doug Nettles. Yeah.

Jeremy: Sally's been pestering me about it.

Natalie: What did you tell her?

Jeremy: I told her I wasn't sure if I would be able to get it done in time.

Natalie: Why did you tell her that?

Jeremy: She was really pestering me.

Natalie: Good job. What about the piece?

Jeremy looks up.

Jeremy: Here comes Chris now.

Chris walks over and hands Jeremy a tape.

Chris: Touched it up a bit. I put together the stats you pointed out. It's complete.

Jeremy: Thanks, Chris.

Natalie takes the tape from Jeremy.

Natalie: Thank you very much.

Jeremy: Hey!

Natalie: I was going to give it to Dana.

Jeremy: Okay.

Chris: I'll check with you guys later.

Chris walks away.

Natalie: (to Chris) Oh! Run down in four minutes! (to Jeremy) What are you working on right now?

Jeremy: Nothing. Does anybody else need a hand?

Natalie: Nope.

Jeremy: Okay. I was going to get started on a letter to Louise.

Natalie: How is she?

Jeremy: She just got back today from her vacation. My mother called earlier to inform me.

Natalie: Three months in Europe. I bet she had an exciting time.

Jeremy: Yes, she did. I received her postcards from all the different countries.

Natalie: Awesome. I'll let you write, but don't forget about the run down.

Jeremy: Four minutes?

Natalie: Yup. Make it three.

Natalie clutches her clipboard and two video tapes as she walks away.

Jeremy turns back toward his computer and starts typing. As you look at his computer screen, you notice several postcards on small wire stands next to the monitor.

Dear Louise,

It is great to know you are back and in good health. Mom called earlier to inform me of your arrival, and so I am writing this before our 10 o'clock rundown. I understand Mom and Dad are relieved you are back, but I hear they still disagree with your decision to take a year off so you can find yourself. Mom says the whole family disagrees with your decision, and I'm not going to lecture you on what you should do with your life. Instead, I'm going to amuse you by updating you on recent events here at Continental Corp.


Jeremy's letter continues.

Dana is sitting in Isaac's chair. She is looking over some papers and writing down some notes. When she finishes, Dana straightens out the papers and put them back into a folder. She then sets the folder at the edge of the desk. Dana spins around in the chair and watches what is playing on the monitors.

There is a knock on the door.


Just before you left on your trip, our managing editor, Isaac Jaffee, collapsed prior to a show. I don't think any of us remember what happened during that particular show because our minds were on Isaac's unknown condition...

Isaac: Getting comfortable in my chair?


Dana spins around in the chair as Isaac enters.

Dana: What are you doing here?

Isaac: This is my office.

Dana: I know.

Isaac: And this is my job.

Dana: I am aware of that also.

Isaac: Good. What are you doing here?


Needless to say, our imaginations thought of something far more serious than it really was.

Dana: I was looking over the rotation for next week.

Dana gets up out of the chair.

Dana: Here, Isaac. Sit down.

Isaac sits in his chair.

Dana: Are you okay?

Isaac: I am fine today.

Dana: Today?

Isaac: I am fine today, and I was fine yesterday, and the day before and the day before that.

Dana: Good. Did you drink your water?

Isaac: Dana-

Dana: And I noticed you haven't been drinking those protein shakes which are just sitting in your refrigerator. You haven't been drinking alcohol or soda have you?

Isaac: I just came back from Anthony's after having three rum-and-cokes. Dana, I don't need you to treat me like I'm an invalid.

Dana: I know that. It's just that alcohol and soda can help accelerate the dehydration process. Water is the best thing for you. (pause) Did you drink your water?

Isaac throws his hands in the air.

Isaac: I had four glasses of water today.

Dana: Big glasses or little glasses?

Isaac: Dana-

Dana: You need to be drinking between three and five regular glasses of water a day.

Dana goes over to Isaac's bar, grabs a glass, and pours some water.

Isaac: I am growing gils, Dana.

Dana: You know what the doctor said.

Dana takes the glass of water and gives it to Isaac. Isaac takes the glass and sets it on his desk.

Isaac: I tripped and fell, and I hit my head.

Dana: Yes, and the doctor also said your were exhausted and dehydrated. You had been working long hours and stressing yourself. Your sodium and electrolytes levels were abnormal. Your condition is common among elderly people, Isaac, and it could lead to seizures or death. You need to keep drinking liquids to keep your body regulated.

Isaac: I've had to make six trips to the restroom today alone.

Dana: Good for you, Isaac. Now drink your water.

Isaac looks at Dana.

Dana: Go on. Drink up.

Isaac takes a sip of water.

Isaac: Don't you have something better to do?

Dana: You know, that shot you took on your head has made you crankier.

Natalie walks into the office.

Natalie: Dana? David Ralston took the third stage today, and Joseph Fresquez still leads the rest of the field by eight-and-a-half minutes.

Dana: Great. Let Dan know.

Natalie: Already did.

Dana: Good.

Natalie: How are you doing, Isaac?

Isaac: Fine.

Natalie: You seem to be walking well.

Isaac: It's left foot then right foot, correct?

Natalie: Did you drink enough water today?

Isaac sarcastically smiles and holds up his glass.

Isaac: I'm on my way, Natalie. I've become a jellyfish. Now get out.

Dana and Natalie start to leave the office.

Natalie: Isaac, that shot on the head you took has made you crank-

Dana quiets Natalie.

Natalie: What?

Dana: He's already heard enough today.

Natalie: Okay.

Natalie and Dana leave the office.


Jeremy is typing at his computer in the newsroom.

The conference room door opens up and Natalie's head pops out. She spots Jeremy still typing at his desk. She quickly walks up behind him.


Even though Isaac seems irritated by the attention and concern for his health, I know he appreciates the fact there are so many people who share these concerns and care for him.

I now realize that this has taken more than three minutes to write, which means...

Natalie takes her clipboard and slaps Jeremy on his back with it.


Natalie: Right now.

Jeremy: Sorry. Okay.

Jeremy gets up and follows Natalie into the conference room.


I'll continue when I get back.

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