American Cars by F.J. Hubert | Script Revolution

American Cars

When a car designer competes to become CEO against the woman of his dreams, he must face his lifetime fear of abandonment as the ultimate test.



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1974, Flint, Michigan: Albert Smith, a middle-aged man, kills himself with a gun. The headline of the newspaper lying on his kitchen table reads "USEngines to lay off 86,000 workers." 2010, Motor City: middle-aged man Peter Smith speeds up toward USE's tower top floor in an elevator. He exchanges greetings with a woman in suit he finds attractive. After gazing at a Henry Ford's portrait, he meets USE's Chief Executive Officer Richard Derreck. The CEO worked with Peter's father back in USE's heyday in Flint. Peter gets the job as USE's new Chief Design Officer. Richard calls in Bonnie Derreck, her daughter and Chief Financial Officer. It's the woman from the elevator. Peter and Bonnie seem to like each other. Richard introduces them to a special contest, in two parts, for electing his or her successor as a CEO: whoever gets the most votes upon completion of part one, a pilot project, and part two, a special fear test, will become the next CEO.

Peter’s vision is to bring back the heyday of the American car as retro self-driving cars, with 50s-, 60s-, and 70s-style designs. The marketing plan is to build three vintage towns called "Henry City." As a pilot, Peter builds a limited edition of 1960s-style "American Cars" along with a vintage town called "Henry City, Florida." Peter’s pilot proves a historic success. Bonnie’s vision is to make USE a private, global company through mergers in Asia and move its head office to Hong Kong. As a pilot, Bonnie moves the USE Trucks division to Hong Kong. USE's net profits surge through major cost reductions, pleasing shareholders. Bonnie and Peter get into a relationship. Part two of the contest. Bonnie's biggest lifetime fear is falling in love; Peter's is pulling the trigger like his dad. Peter's American Dream of success and love seems a reality. Is it too good to last? Bad news. The costs of running Henry City, Florida puts "American Cars" in the red. USE's stock is in free fall. The CFO proposes laying off 10,000 workers. She also advises Peter to make his new line of cars a deluxe edition for collectors and Henry City a real estate destination for buyers. Peter refuses, defending the American Dream.

The CDO gets luckier in love than ever. Bonnie's gifts on Peter's birthday kick it up a notch. But, is she really falling for him or doing it to get elected as CEO? Peter gets fired for triggering a brawl during a friendly USE baseball game. Richard and Bonnie block him on their phones and ignore him. Peter’s gift cars are towed away. He seeks comfort in his father's old house in Flint. Bonnie delivers him his father's gun and suicide letter. Is this part of the fear test? Is the gun loaded? Bonnie hears a gunshot echo out of the house, cries her heart out, then leaves in her limo. Peter survives. The CEO contest's moment of truth: Bonnie becomes the new CEO and seems madly in love with Peter. But, is she really? Peter and Bonnie are in bed. The woman asks him if he's ready to turn "American Cars" into a niche success. He gets upset, asks her is she loves him. She says she likes him. Peter realizes that she used him only to become CEO. He tells her, “See you in the boardroom,” then exits. The battle for Peter’s American Dream has just started.

Submitted: August 20, 2018
Last Updated: September 6, 2020

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The Writer: F.J. Hubert

I'm missing my father, died too young. He loved American cars. In 2008, I've started longing for all the American cars of the decades he lived in. And the American Dream. That's when I started writing "American Cars." I grew up in a small town where the GM plant used to be the pride of so many of us there. It still breaks my heart today to drive by the area where it used to sit. So, I care a great deal about all the fathers and grandfathers of America whose lives were broken over the decline of cities such as Flint, Michigan. Francois Joseph Hubert is my name. I'm an MA Creative Writing holder. "American Cars" is my first script. The copy editor who helped me bring it to its third draft... Go to bio