The Witter Merchants by Elizabeth Blandford | Script Revolution

The Witter Merchants

Shakespeare and Rowley must plead their case before the King. If they fail, they will hang. "Our accusers bear false wittering against us. But we are the Witter Merchants. We can and must outwitter them."

Type:

Status:

Page Count: 
119pp

Genre:

Budget:

Age Rating:

Synopsis/Details: 

Under cover of darkness, on a cold December night in 1598, wannabe actor, 14 yr old, horse-wrangler, Wm. Rowley helps Shakespeare and the actors of The Lord Chamberlain’s Men demolish The Theatre and save the beams to be used to build The Globe, a new theatre on the south bank of the Thames.

Rowley apprentices to his idol, Clown actor, Wm Kempe. Captivated by Shakespeare’s beautiful words, he longs to be a playwright himself.

When plague shuts down The Globe, and all theatres, in 1603 the actors disperse. Shakespeare heads home to Stratford. Rowley, who has one play written, rides with Shakespeare as his bodyguard.

They stop a night in Oxford. Rowley intercepts a thief and is wounded. Tended by beautiful, Jane Davenant, he is inspired to compose a sonnet to her.

In Stratford, Rowley rescues fallen woman Elizabeth Wheeler from an unruly mob. He is arrested until Shakespeare persuades the Bailiff to let him off with a caution.

Shakespeare’s house and stable are searched. Rowley’s play is seized as being lewd, seditious and full of black magic. Rowley is arrested, accused of being a Jesuit priest harbored by Shakespeare.

Shakespeare and Judith, who deems Rowley her honorary brother, disguise themselves in order to rescue Rowley.

Fearing retribution, Shakespeare decides that they must appeal to the King.

King James is holding a Gala in honor of his brother-in-law, King Christian of Denmark, held at Theobald House, home of Robert Cecil. At Cecil’s expense!

Shakespeare and Rowley rejoin The King’s Men and attend the audience/trial held before King James. They are acquitted. The King requests they put on a performance of Rowley’s play that very evening. It is a big success.

Rowley implores Shakespeare to sign his name next to his own. Then the title page of his play reads,
“The Birth of Merlin” or “The Childe hathe Found His Father” by Wm. Shakespeare & Wm. Rowley.

All Accolades & Coverage: 

Official Selection of Los Angeles Television, Script and Film Festival 2021

Submitted: December 13, 2020
Last Updated: April 16, 2021

Want to read this script? You must join the revolution first. Don't worry, it's free, easy, everyone's welcome, and you can start reading right away.

This Script Is Loved By

James Shearer's picture
Ben Blandford's picture
Wilmer Villanueva's picture
Katherine Sainte-Marie's picture
Elizabeth Blandford's picture

The Writer: Elizabeth Blandford

I came late to the craft of screenwriting, and so only have two fully finished scripts, that have found a home on Script Revolution. I enjoy reading more than writing and am better at listening than talking. One of my favorite films is Baz Luhrmann's "Strictly Ballroom". My pick for a book that would make a wonderful film is Laurence Shames' "Florida Straits". Go to bio

More Scripts From Elizabeth

Il Papa's Plight excerpt from Pope for a Day
On the Pope's 84th birthday he gets many surprises. One of them, literally, out of this world
Short Family For sale 13pp
1 reader loves this script
The Witter Merchants excerpt from long version
I had to cut a longer version of The Witter Merchants to fit competition page limit requirements. This montage was one of the casualties.
Short History For sale 5pp
1 reader loves this script
Pope for a Day
The Pope"s birthday mission - was to just bless a new space-plane. Or so he thought!
Short Adventure, Family, Fantasy For sale 63pp
1 reader loves this script