The Half Life of Harry Figg by Mark Wesley | Script Revolution

The Half Life of Harry Figg

A troubled teenage burglar comes to the aid of a reclusive scientist when industrial spies attempt to steal his fusion experiment.



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In the rough suburbs of a small town the Snake Crew make local lives miserable. ‘Snake’ McKay is the leader. The youngest, 13-year-old Billy Boyle, must undergo a challenge to become a full member. After the neighborhood power goes out, a bright violet light is seen coming from a bedroom window. The gang challenge Billy to break in, find the cause, and bring back evidence.

Once inside, he finds a workbench covered in electronic equipment. The light is coming from a glass containment vessel. Press cuttings about nuclear fusion are pinned to the wall. He grabs one as he escapes when reclusive, amateur scientist and high school science assistant, Harry Figg, returns to the room. Billy’s curiosity is aroused, but so too is The Corporation, who, after spending billions on nuclear fusion with very little to show, send two spies to steal Harry’s device.

Home life for Billy is traumatic, but things start to change when he meets Laura, and then Harry reluctantly takes him under his wing.

His school science teacher advises Billy to enter a project in the Science Fair, and her plea to, ‘Make it a crowd pleaser’ gives Billy an idea. As Harry improves his fusion reactor, The Corporation spies undertake several failed attempts to steal it, but guess it might be present at the forthcoming Science Fair.

During this time, Snake is selling cheap electric scooters to the local school kids. Snake organizes a scooter race on the evening of the Science Fair. It starts in the schoolyard and ends at Snake Crew corner lot.

The evening of the Science Fair is a great but short-lived success for Harry’s fusion project as the spies mount their attack. First the fire alarm sends visitors out into the schoolyard, but it also becomes the starting bell for the race. Then the power goes out. The spies grab the core of the device, but are interrupted by Billy who they lock in the janitor’s cupboard before putting the device in the back of their SUV. Billy messages Laura to get help from Snake McKay. While driving through the crowded yard, the spies stop and one runs back to get the laptop and notebook they had left behind. Billy has been released by firemen alerted by his cries. He spots the SUV and climbs in the back. The spy returns and they drive off.

Billy’s mom and her new friend, Police Officer Fiennes are visiting the science fair. Mom and Harry climb into the police car and Fiennes gives chase – in the wrong direction. Billy’s girlfriend, Laura, borrows a scooter and races off to Snake Crew Corner to ask Snake for help.

The scooter race through the town comes to an inevitable conclusion with Snake winning. But the race causes an accident when the SUV collides with another police car. The SUV drives off with fender damage. Spy woman tells spy man to get out and fix it. As he does, she drives off without him. She makes a call that reveal’s she’s made secret plans to sell to a foreign agent who tells her to meet him at a nearby abandoned warehouse.

Billy, listening in the back, texts this information to Laura. She arrives at Snake Crew Corner. Snake had helped before and came out of it badly – he refuses to do more. Laura begs the other scooter riders for help. They race off to the warehouse.

Officer Fiennes encounters the stranded spy man, arrests him and calls for back up to take him away. Laura arrives and gives Fiennes the SUV destination. She climbs in and they drive off.

Spy woman has parked on the forecourt of the warehouse facing the foreign agents car. She wants the money; he wants to see the device. Meanwhile, Billy has climbed over the back seats and hides on the floor. He spots the bag containing the laptop and notebook. Satisfied the device is what she claims they walk back towards his car. Billy sneaks out of the SUV with the bag setting of the car alarm. Spy woman, the agent and his driver race after him.

The scooters arrive and begin harassing the villains. One scooter grabs Billy and they race into the dark warehouse. The villains follow. Billy hides while the other scooters continue to torment the villains. Billy is found by the foreign agent and dragged outside. He holds a gun to him and demands the scooter riders join him on the forecourt.

While he sneers at the boys and their childish toys, from beyond the headlights of the SUV Snake comes speeding out of the dark and knocks the agent flying, sending Snake over the handlebars, crashing to the ground. Billy attends to Snake as Officer Fiennes and company arrive, lights flashing, and arrest the villlains. Harry goes to the SUV to inspect his device. Billy hands Harry the bag with the laptop and notebook.

Later, Billy and Laura visit Harry's workshop and find a stranger who they believe is trying to steal the reactor. Harry enters and introduces them to Dr Dev Arnan from MIT who Harry has now agreed to work with. Harry will move with his mother to Massachusetts - Billy and Laura are invited to visit.

The story ends with an aerial view of the neighborhood as the power goes out again and only the brilliant violet star-light remains.

All Accolades & Coverage: 

ScreenCraft Family Feature Quaterfinalist.
Golden Script Semi-finalist
Chicago Screenplay Awards Quarterfinalist
Stage321 Scifi/fantasy screenwriting Contest Quaterfinalist
Santa Barbara InternationalScreenplay Awards Honorable Mention

Submitted: December 15, 2020
Last Updated: October 26, 2021

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The Writer: Mark Wesley

Previously worked in broadcasting including ten years on Radio Luxembourg. Wrote and produced records for EMI, Warner Bros, Private Stock, Casablanca among others. Later, partner in a business film production company. Directed and produced six-part police documentary for ITV. Directed and produced an episode of ‘24 Hours’ documentary for Channel 4. Directed TV commercials, endless marketing films, and five 25 min driver training comedy dramas for London Overground and Crossrail. Writer of thriller novels: BANGK!, FRACK!, Dead City Exit SCREENPLAYS BANGK! Crime Thriller: 113 pages. Los Angeles International Screenplay Awards finalist. LOGLINE A charismatic hustler devises a high-risk scheme... Go to bio

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