Soul Power by Bijan Bayne | Script Revolution

Soul Power

The Night James Brown Saved Boston



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Based On: 
True Events

It's early April, 1968, and James Brown is coming to play the Boston Garden on Good Friday. Soul Brother Number One is at the peak of his powers, and the teenagers love him. They even listen to him- more than they do their own parents. On the eve of the show, as kids are copping new outfits, and scheming how to get or scalp tickets, Dr. King is assassinated. Unrest grips most Eastern cities. Boston grieves. But what about the show? And what about the streets?

A Black city councilperson named Tommie Atkins hatches an idea. He can't make it happen alone. What if the show goes on, but it televised live, as a means of maybe keeping the peace? Ticket holding teens can still enjoy James, and tv viewers could be encouraged to stay inside. To pull this off, Atkins will need a tv station, and James' approval. In 'Soul Power', as troubled teens wonder what will become of their city, and parents worry about their childrens' safety, show or no show, for the first time, moviegoers will go behind the scenes at WGBH Boston, as Atkins negotiates with the public tv station for air time, and tries to convince Brown, who had prepared for an arena show, to perform live before cameras. In addition, Brown has a contract to use video of the Boston Garden concert for an upcoming tv special for summer 1968. Atkins also has to win over Mayor Kevin White (who never heard of Brown). The mayor has to coordinate with his police department, because Garden security will have to be tight as a drum. What if 13,000 kids show up, leave the show excited, and still riot?
Who really holds the cards- the mayor, the performer, the tv station or the fans?

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Submitted: May 11, 2020
Last Updated: October 8, 2020

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The Writer: Bijan Bayne

Bijan C. Bayne has researched, written for, produced, directed & been interviewed in various films and television shows. His screenplay made the quarterfinals of BET's Color Creative "Script To Screen" competition in 2018. He appears in the 2020 movie "The First To Do It". In April 2014, he appeared on TV One's "Unsung Hollywood"'s episode "The Harlem Globetrotters". Bayne wrote animated ads for the National Science Teaching Association. Bayne was interviewed and featured in Brian Culkin's documentary "The Mission". Bayne wrote the tv pilots for rapper/producer Jazzy Jeff, and for rapper Akinyele. In addition, he served as a consultant to BassetTV, & MindSwarms, for branding Nike,... Go to bio
Law Firm: Pappalardo & Pappalardo
Lawyer: G. Alexander Jenkins

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