Requiem for a Heavyweight

Written by:
Jim Hamilton

Estimated Run Time:



Before the evening show is set to begin, Dan is standing alone inside his office. He is looking at and leaning toward a mirror on the wall. He carefully examines his upper lip, trying to see its nonexistent swelling. Dan stands tall, still not convinced his lip has fully healed from the punch he took from a heavyweight contender.

As Dan stares into his reflection, something pops into his mind.

Dan: You talking to me? You talking to me? You talking to me? Well, who-

"Who are you talking to?"

Dan jumps, turns, and spots Jeremy standing in the doorway.

Dan: Nothing. Hey, Jeremy.

Jeremy: You didn't happen to hide the cut footage of the weigh-in?

Dan: Why would I hide it?

Jeremy: I suppose in order to have a little fun.

Dan: And why would people think I would have to hide it?

Jeremy: They suppose you do these things in order to have a little fun.

Dan: Well, they're right.

Jeremy: So you hid the tape?

Dan: I'm saying they're right about me doing this sort of thing.

Jeremy: And in this case?

Dan: The idea didn't pop into my mind.

Jeremy: Ah.

Dan: But I appreciate you coming to me assuming I had thought of the idea. I'm flattered to be considered the "usual suspect."

Jeremy: That still doesn't help me find the missing tape.

Dan: I do have one possible solution.

Jeremy: What's that?

Dan: Bloodhounds.

Jeremy: Okay.

Dan: You know they have a highly trained sense of smell.

Jeremy: But no way to distinguish the difference between cut footage of a weigh-in and highlights from a college softball game.

Dan: I didn't suggest it was going to be easy.

"Ten minutes to air. First team to the studio, please."

Dan: That's my cue.

Jeremy: And I need to find the tape.

Dan: And I'll offer you another possible solution.

Jeremy: What's that?

Dan: It's just gone.

Jeremy: It's been gone for a few hours now.

Dan: I guess that's the best solution.

Jeremy shakes his head as Dan heads into the newsroom.

In the middle of the newsroom, Dan raises his hands in triumph.

Dan: Approximately 24 hours from now, this network will be showing the heavyweight championship of the world! Approximately 27 hours from now, I will be enjoying a private social event with the heavyweight champion of the world!

Dan struts through the newsroom toward the studio as Jeremy cruses by him.

Jeremy opens the door to the control room. Dana and Natalie look toward him.

Jeremy: I haven't found the tape, yet.

Natalie: I asked you to find the tape two hours ago.

Jeremy: Would I be telling you I haven't found the tape, if I had actually found the tape?

Dana: That's true. You certainly don't have the keen sense of humor Daniel possesses.

Natalie: You did check with Dan?

Jeremy: I did.

Natalie: And you didn't find it?

Jeremy: Didn't I just tell you I haven't found the tape?

Natalie: Yes, and what did Danny have to say?

Jeremy: He didn't come up with the idea of hiding the tape.

Dana: Jeremy, I can only give you five more minutes. Please retrace your steps and try to remember where you left the tape.

Jeremy: I never had possession the tape.

Dana: Well, that creates a problem. Chris, Will? Could you preview 3 and 4?

Will: Previewing 3 and 3a.

Chris: She asked for 3 and 4.

Will: Which is coming up after 3.

Chris: But you said "previewing 3a."

Will: Which is a part of 3. Previewing 4.

Dana: You two didn't lose the tape, did you?

Chris: What tape?

Dana: Nevermind. Jeremy? Who last had possession of the tape?

Natalie: I did.

Dana: Natalie, I need for you to retrace your steps-

Natalie: The show is about ready to begin.

Dana: I guess I'll have to consider the tape gone.

Natalie: Dana-

Dana: We've wasted enough time looking for a 25-second piece. It isn't critical to the success or failure of tonight's broadcast. We'll just rearrange the broadcast.

Dana starts scanning through her shot sheets.

Natalie: It's our second story.

Dana takes a quick glance of Natalie, jumps up, and starts running around the room.

Dana: Oh no! Chris, Will, stop everything because we need to reset the show! Call Jennifer, Kelly, Jack, and Jennifer and tell them they are on standby! Dave! Do... do something! Jeremy?! We need to file a missing tape report with the police! We've lost the most important tape! How will we be able to continue the show?! How can I go on living if 3 million people are deprived of their precious 25-second tape?!

Dana looks over and sees Chris and Will working frantically.

Dana: I'm joking!

Chris and Will look around and see they were the only ones following Dana's frantic orders.

Chris: I thought she was serious.

Will: I didn't think it was a drill.

Dana: Everybody, relax and take a deep breath. We all talked about this during the last run down. We have a contingent plan if the tape doesn't appear. Jeremy, take a few more minutes to look for the tape, but don't kill yourself over it. If you don't find it, have one of the interns search for it. Natalie, alert Bobbi and Dan that we will be making the changes at the top of the broadcast. Chris, Will, Dave, please reset everything the way it was originally set- with, of course, the most recent changes.

Dave: (to Chris and Will) You two dragged me into this mess. You each owe me.

Jeremy leaves the control room, and Dana casually makes her way to her seat.

Natalie: I am impressed with how well you are taking this news.

Dana: Yeah. See me in my office after the broadcast.

Elliott enters the room. He has a note attached to his clipboard.

Elliott: Marshall just scored another touchdown. They're beating the Rockets by 6 with a little over five minutes to go in the game.

Elliott hands the note to Natalie.

Natalie: Thanks, Elliott.

Elliott: What's this I hear about you calling in bloodhounds?

Dana gives Elliott a puzzled look.


Dan and Bobbi are seated at the anchor desk. Alyson is applying last-minute touches to Dan's face. Dan is holding a hand mirror and looking at his face.

Dan: And so it's not noticeable?

Alyson: Nope.

Dan: Because I still feel as if it's right there.

Alyson: Yeah.

Dan: I mean, right there, for all the world to see. I'm afraid my lip is pulsing and sending out a beacon to ships warning them of the close proximity of the building.

Alyson: It's not noticeable.

Dan: Okay. Good.

Alyson: All done.

Alyson leaves the set, and Bobbi and Dan scan over their individual copies and make their most recent adjustments.

Dan: Can you feel the excitement?

Bobbi: Over what?

Dan: Over what? Are you kidding?

Bobbi: No, I'm not.

Dan: The fight.

Bobbi: Dan, you tend to change your mind over the most exciting events on a whim. I decided to let you tell me what was the most exciting at the moment.

Dan: It's all I've talked about over the last month.

Bobbi: I know.

Dan: I would have thought you would have known what I was excited over.

Bobbi: Only because you've talked about it over the last month.

Dan: Exactly.

Bobbi: I am very happy for the network.

Dan: The network? Come on, now. Don't you love boxing?

Bobbi: It's my job, Dan. I don't have to love a certain sport or a certain athlete in order to do my job effectively.

Dan is surprised by Bobbi's response.

Dan: You're the ringside reporter.

Bobbi: I know.

Dan: And you're not excited about it?

Bobbi: I'm very happy for the network.

Dan leans toward Bobbi.

Dan: I mean... tomorrow night, I will be watching the heavyweight championship of the world. My father will be sitting in the eighth row, and after the fight we will be going to the post-fight party. The invitations to this party are very few, far and in between-

Bobbi: Would you like my invites?

Dan: To what?

Bobbi: The post-fight party.

Dan: You have invitations?

Bobbi: Two of them, to be exact.

Dan: But you don't love boxing.

Bobbi: I know.

Dan: How could you get invitations if you don't have a general appreciation for this sport?

Bobbi: Everybody involved with the coverage received two invites each.

Dan: That's like a hundred invitations for this network alone.

Bobbi: And you can have my allotment, if you wish.

Dan: But I love boxing, and you don't.

Bobbi: We've been over this Dan. It's not like each invitation has a personal engraving on it. They're just tickets for anybody who wants to attend.

"Where did you hide the tape, Daniel?"

Dan looks toward the control room to respond to Dana's over-the-intercom question.

Dan: I don't have it, Dana.

"Don't be in denial, Da- Nat-"

There are a few chuckles as people hear the beginning of the fight over the intercom between Dana and Natalie.


Jeremy looks perplexed as he walks through the newsroom. He does a general walkthrough, searching for the tape even though he isn't moving aside anything. He takes a glance over Natalie's desk. He focuses on a pile on her desk.

Jeremy walks over and looks at a small stack of books and papers. He reads aloud the items as he unstacks the pile from top to bottom.

Jeremy: "Helpful Tips on Moving," a Los Angeles apartment guide, a... a cost-of-living analysis, another apartment guide, a memo, another memo, yet another apartment guide, a tape-

Jeremy stops. He checks for a label on the tape, but finds it unmarked. His hopes are raised when he thinks he has found the missing tape.

Jeremy walks into Dan's office, pops the tape into the VCR, and starts up the television. He grabs the remote and starts the tape.

"Hey, lamb chop. I love you so much and I just wanted to send you this video-"

Jeremy stops the tape. His disappointment over not finding the lost tape is only overshadowed by his disappointment in another gift from Natalie's boyfriend, Michael.


"Sixty seconds roll tape, two minutes live."

Dan and Bobbi sit quietly at the anchor desk. Bobbi is concentrating on her notes, while Dan is in thought while watching the countdown.

Dan: Hey, hey, hey Dana. I have a question. Actually, this is for everybody inside the control room and on the set.

"Okay. Shoot."

Dan: Everybody raise your hand if you received invitations to the post-fight party.

Dan looks around and sees everybody, from the camera people to makeup to the grip to Bobbi Bernstein raising their hand.

Dan: Did everybody receive invitations to the post-fight party?

There is a moment of silence.

"Yes, Danny."

Dan: So every one of you let me carry on over these supposedly rare invitations? I thought this was going to be a small, private event.

"There are only 500 invitations to the post-fight party."

Dan: But the key is that you let me carry on even though every one of you received invitations.

"Danny, you have to understand it was nice to see someone so excited over something like this."

Dan: But everybody received two invitations, just like me.


Dan: Okay. That's fine. That's all. Carry on about your business.

Dan straightens his hard copy. He sees a determined and victorious Jeremy walking onto the set. Dan nudges Bobbi to bring her attention toward Jeremy walking on the set. Jeremy holds a video tape in the air, presumably the one which has been missing most of the evening.

Dan: You found it?

Jeremy: Indeed, I did.

Jeremy walks proudly into the control room. Dan smiles as he and Bobbi begin to make preemptive corrections to their hard copy.

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