Pipe Up! by Jim Boston | Script Revolution

Pipe Up!

When she learns a restaurant in contemporary Mesa, AZ is closing for good and the building's repurposing, an Arizona Cardinals cheerleader, a frustrated musician whose granddad played the organ there, seeks to save the eatery.

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127pp

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It’s Week 1 of a new National Football League season...and the Arizona Cardinals have a lot to celebrate after they beat the Washington Football Team in what’s also the Cardinals’ home opener.

KARYN ANNE KLEMME celebrates by inviting fellow Cardinals cheerleaders KALEY DECORREVONT, ELENA DELGADO, DAWNELLE HAYNES, ANGELIQUE LIN, and MISTY ROWBOTTOM out to dinner. This time, they go to what independent-minded, somewhat-eccentric Karyn Anne terms “a really cool place.”

It’s Pizza Power, the landmark restaurant in Mesa, on the other side of Phoenix from where the Cards just got through taking care of business.

Angelique, Dawnelle, Elena, and Misty are excited to eat at Pizza Power...but to ol’ stuck-up Kaley, the organ music there makes the eatery “a mausoleum.”

Never mind that this restaurant is one of just three pizza-and-pipes establishments left in the United States...or that Karyn Anne’s late granddad, Buddy Link, played the organ there...or that it’s got the biggest Mighty Wurlitzer theater pipe organ on Earth.

Still, the six cheerleaders learn from Pizza Power owners WENDELL GIVEHAND and TOM WULK that the place will close up for good on December 31...and become the new headquarters of the local offices of the United States Department of Homeland Security.

Karyn Anne decides to find a way to help reverse the decision...but not before she takes a turn at the restaurant’s Wurlitzer. And the invitation to play comes only because organist LEW THOMSEN needed a break due to the effects of the extra mushrooms and extra anchovies on his pizza.

Buddy’s granddaughter wows ‘em as an organist...and as a result, fatherly Lew and fellow Pizza Power organist BRETT SALYERS, the jovial replacement for Buddy, take her under their wing. Brett enjoys Karyn Anne’s unique musical gifts...but Lew finds her “a tough sell” because her repertoire doesn’t include Disney tunes or anything from “Star Wars.”

And that’s a kiss of death if you’re a theater organist.

When Karyn Anne isn’t cheering on the Cards or making music, she’s a bank teller. And on the job, she embarks on making a video designed to save Pizza Power. Later, the young musician joins the Valley of the Sun chapter of the American Theatre Organ Society and seeks ITS MEMBERS’ help in thwarting the transfer of the Mesa building to DHS...but things don’t start off too well when, during an open console session at the Orpheum Theater, she creates a cipher after playing “Wooly Bully.”

While Karyn Anne and fun-loving Dawnelle shoot video at Pizza Power, DHS Phoenix chief DILLON MASTERSON and top agent BRYAN WESSON work with straightforward Tom and folksy Wendell to facilitate the building’s transition from the happiest eatery in Metro Phoenix to the new local DHS/ICE/ERO digs.

At last, the “Save Pizza Power” video is done...and goes on YouTube. Despite its immediate popularity, tyrannical BRANDIE BIEMESDERFER, the cheer squad’s coach, kicks Karyn Anne off the squad because the video supposedly doesn’t honor America...an NFL no-no. After all, the video’s about denying a Cabinet-level department That Building in Mesa.

So Karyn Anne steps up her efforts to make music, earn her fellow organ club members’ trust, and regain the ground she lost due to both her college studies and her years as a Cardinals cheerleader...and the renewed emphasis on jamming comes at a great time: She inherits Granddad Buddy’s 1989 Lowrey electronic organ just in time to hold an open house.

Dawnelle, nurturing Angelique, levelheaded Elena, and analytical Misty attend Karyn Anne’s open house...as ex-cheerleaders; they and Kaley’s successor in the dinner club, clever LUCIANNA “LUCKY” MORETTI, quit the squad in solidarity with Karyn Anne.

Prickly Dillon and mellow Bryan come to the open house, too...to infiltrate it. Dillon calls Washington to report the dirt on this musical bank teller. Bryan, though, exhibits cold feet: “I can’t get mad at a White woman who’s got a ‘Black Lives Matter’ sign on her refrigerator.”

In front of MESA’S CITY COUNCIL, Dillon and Brandie speak up for the conversion of the Pizza Power building; Tom and Wendell testify, too. The nays come from Karyn Anne and from Misty...a cost analyst for a local construction company.

While Metro Phoenix awaits the decision, Karyn Anne gets a weekend to herself as Pizza Power’s featured organist. When Dillon learns about the gig, he dispatches womanizing, already-wed agent JOEL HANNAN to check out the show...and “see how good she is in bed.”

Joel’s ploy backfires: Karyn Anne chases him away with screwdrivers, DHS/ICE/ERO faces picketing, and DANA REMINGTON and fellow agent RUBEN MACHADO, a longtime Pizza Power customer, quit the department.

When New Year’s Eve comes, Bryan, Dillon, Tom, and Wendell unite to make the transaction...but TWO FAMILIES pelt the DHS operatives with bags and bags of pizza toppings. The chain-reaction result: Dillon and Bryan announce that DHS will move its local operation to nearby Gilbert...Wendell and Tom tell the eaters that Pizza Power Mesa is still alive...and Karyn Anne accepts Lew’s and Brett’s invitation to become the eatery’s third organist.

Karyn Anne’s first order of business as Pizza Power’s newest musician: “How many of you in the audience would like to do open console up here?”

Nobody bites...until, of all people, Kaley, who apologizes to Karyn Anne for all the meanness Kaley’s shown her.

Submitted: June 1, 2021
Last Updated: July 1, 2021

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Jim Boston's picture

The Writer: Jim Boston

I first got interested in screenwriting as a college student in 1979 (Iowa State University); an additional impetus was the paperback version of the "American Graffiti" screenplay. From 1980 to 1994, I pursued screenwriting with a vengeance...but other things happened in my life. Since 2016, I've been back chasing the dream...and it's only because I inherited a Power Mac from one of the codirectors (Nick Holle) of a documentary I was in: "The Entertainers," about the World Championship Old-Time Piano Playing Contest and Festival. (Nick received the computer from the husband-and-wife couple who helped produce the film, Brent and Jackie Watkins.) The Power Mac has a copy of Final Draft 6... Go to bio

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