Red Nose, Floppy Shoes by James Brosnahan | Script Revolution

Red Nose, Floppy Shoes



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OCD professor tests positive for Clown Syndrome and must practice social distancing from clowns and comedians as he battles a series of comedic remedies to find a cure before he dies laughing.

History professor Michael — meticulous, overly health-conscious, OCD — visits geneticist Dr.
Keegle to seek an explanation for his "coulrophobia", fear of clowns. If they can find a genetic
link, they might be able to find a cure. And he needs one, because his eldest daughter Erin is off
at the Police Academy, training as a clown — in a special circus clown response division known
as SMAC, "Special Mimes And Clowns".

His wife, no-nonsense Marla, believes it's just a bit of empty nest syndrome, since his symptoms
started the moment Erin left to join the academy. But Michael's not so sure. Meanwhile, Erin's
doing very well in her program — on a trainee operation, she helps nab renegade mime Mums-
The-Word. She's a natural with the super soaker and the invisible wall, that barrier that stops
criminal mimes in their tracks every time. Marla tells her on the phone that they will be at her
graduation, come hell or high water.

Dr. Keegle visits with the results — Michael has Clown Syndrome! And what's more, he'll die in
seven days... death by Clowning, a terrible way to go. The only possible remedy is a serum made
from the ground up pages of a book by a famous mime of the Roman Empire. It's the only thing
that might delay the Clowning. Dr. Keegle also suggests a support group. But he must stay away
from Erin — it could be deadly. Michael's shattered by the news, and attempts suicide — but
suicide by radon exposure, which is not as acutely deadly as he thought.

Dr. Keegle administers the serum. It takes hold while Michael's at the Clown Syndrome support
group — his fears all suddenly vanish. He's not afraid... in fact, he feels happy. Slap-happy,
even. And he begins telling jokes to the recovering Clown Syndrome victims — which resulting
in 10 fatalities. They all died laughing! Turns out Dr. Dr. Keegle mixed up the test results. But
that's not enough to keep Michael from being tried and sentenced to the death penalty...

The experience has conquered his fear of clowns, though, so he gets to visit with Erin again in
jail. Soon comes the day of execution, where he and 12 other clowns will be transported to the
place of execution in a tiny VW for death by lethal injection — laughing gas deemed redundant.
As Marla waits for the grim outcome, she's surprised by Erin, with Michael! His death sentence
was commuted by the governor to ten years. He's on a 4 hour pass in Erin's custody. What's more,
he's signed a book deal — and with the malpractice money from Dr. Keegle's misdiagnosis, it
looks like they'll have plenty of cash. The best part — after ten years of training in jail, Michael
should be ready to start a new career as a birthday clown. Happy ending!

All Accolades & Coverage: 

Monkey Bread Tree Film Awards - best character arc
Atlanta Comedy Film Festival - nominated for best screenplay

Submitted: February 2, 2019
Last Updated: March 23, 2020

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The Writer: James Brosnahan

Jim Brosnahan, originally from Pittsburgh via Chicago, is a graduate of the University of Dayton, a member of the Dramatists Guild of America and a published playwright. His plays have been produced across the US and England. His screenplays have earned nominations and awards at several film festivals. He teaches writing for change leaders in the business world. Jim lives in Ohio with his wife and a son with Down syndrome who keeps alive a sense of wonder in the family. Go to bio

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