Under the Shadow by Chaz Fatur | Script Revolution

Under the Shadow

A determined General forms an elite band of daring Military & Stunt Pilots, named the AVG's (The Flying Tigers), to thwart Japan's plot to control the Burma Road, during the other side of WWII.



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The unique History of the infamous Flying Tigers (AVGs)

This story is based in part on the Flying Tigers of the American Volunteer Group (AVG) led by a pioneer, Gen. Claire Chennault. Japan's Imperial Red Dragon Air Force had reigned supreme, feared and unchallenged. China had one territory to protect against all odds; the Burma Road. If Japan could control the 760 mile long mountainous terrain of treacherous, twisting hairpin turns, China could face extinction. Chennault knew that some obscure and risky tactics would prove imperative and that the Japanese would never see coming. Would it be enough?

Enter, a clandestine rag-tag band of Military drop-outs and skilled stunt Pilots, and you have the AVG. Hand picked due to their unusual and unique talents, they would train for twenty weeks in hellish surroundings and learn to fly relic P-40 planes patched together with junkyard spare parts. These incredible underdogs face-off against the JAAF and with Chennault's aerial acrobatic tactics, would alter the course of this of the War.

Our story begins in War torn China in 1920. Twins, Wayne & Sarah Kipling being raised in a Kunming orphanage/ mission ran by Grandfather, Charles and Alicia, their Mother. During a hard time for the Orphanage and barely surviving off donations, a Young wayward Sergeant, Mel Ceder stumbles into their lives delivering them a new addition, Shogi "Tak" Takeuchi, son of a Japanese spy Mother and Father. Alicia shortly dies after conception of the Twins. In 1933, after the children were sent away for their own safety, they arrive in Staunton, Va. at the Military Academy. Ironically the same Academy their Father went to in 1919. In 1940, Wayne's love for flying lands him with the AVG to prove his skills as well as to secretly look for his real Father, a Military man that left his Mother & Sister, never to be heard from again. Tak, being of half Japanese decent, dropped out of Staunton and eventually fulfilled his destiny, to Command of the strong and mighty 64th Sentai of the JAAF. He secretly married Sarah. She truly loved him and would talk about leaving it all behind them and running away to America during the War. James wouldn't think of it, even though he was torn between his Duty and his love for her. Their forbidden romance at his Kowloon villa in Honshu affords her to give trade secrets away to a hanger in Mingaladon, Burma, via coded messages, alerting the AVG of Japanese strategies and betraying the man she loved and his Country. When Tak discovers what she had done, his love for her spares her life and he sends her packed and heart broken on a slow boat to America... alone.

At Keydaw Air Base, Wayne meets Emma Jane Foster, a Red Cross Nurse, who happened to be married to a philandering Major. She soon says good-bye to him and eventually falls for Wayne's brass approach. It's his honesty and direct approach she finds attracting the most. Rangoon comes under Martial Law, forcing them to go their separate ways, due to their own personal beliefs. His is his Duty & finding his Father, hers is basic survival and putting the past behind her. She waves a final sad farewell to what could have been and looks forward to the unknown what lies ahead. This motivates the broken-hearted Wayne into becoming something he never knew he could become.

In May 1942, the final showdown at the Salween River, a valuable passage into China via the Burma Road, matches up the JAAF & AVG'S, its all or nothing. The AVG'S were outnumbered as usual. Over confident Red Dragons would underestimate them once again. Chinese foot Soldiers are unable to stop the slowly progressing Japanese ground Troops from crossing over the critical bridge via the Burma Road.

Soon, the Tigers are in serious trouble, a hundred to eight. Wayne spots his new beloved, 'Old Liberty', and figures he's better in the Air than on the ground. It's time to prove to the Old Man that an old dog dies only when he's ready. Mel smiles as he sees the result of Wayne's hard work and dedication take off into the battled sky. With the Tigers near annihilation, Wayne enters the battle with conviction and more ready than the other Tigers' battle worn planes. They smile and praise his entrance. Wayne maneuvers and out guns several Red Dragons. He's become a man with a determined Mission: saving his Team! In an incredible dogfight with their Leader, Tak, Wayne faces off and eventually out skills his Sister's renegade Husband, and defeats him. Then taking a moment to remember his Sister, he is hit in the underbelly of his P-40. He loses fuel quickly and with one more shot, his plane ignites. He spots the bridge below, as he sees the Japanese foot Soldiers looking like Army ants about fully crossing over into China. He now realizes what his purpose was to join the AVG's; to become an inspiration and a Leader. He careens his bullet riddled plane towards the bridge. In tradition of the Japanese flyers, he becomes a Kamikaze against them. He takes out the bridge and any further passage for the Japanese into China with his body, soul and 'Old Lady Liberty! One final tribute from Chennault as he spots Wayne's plane diving and seeing Lady Liberty's smiling face on the side, he salutes a true hero.

Wayne symbolizes the Unknown Soldier (Flyer) and there were plenty in American History. He showed his superiors, including his unknowing Father that he could be part of the Team. There is no one man important to himself. Mel's guilt-ridden past was overshadowed by Duty to God, Country and the Air Corps (AVG). But more-so-over he never forgot the Orphanage in Kunming and his children who became key essential heros of a War much forgotten in American History. Sometimes it is better for a person not to know certain things, for what they don't know, won't hurt them.

Under the Shadow shows us an important chapter much forgotten from the other side of WWII, that was buried deep in the hallowed halls of time. Gen. Chennault's unique genius proved to his fellow colleagues and the President of the United States, FDR, that a few outmanned and outnumbered group of men could rescue a beleaguered China. The American Volunteer Group (AVG), better known as 'The Flying Tigers', were Japan's 'David' in this epic battle of force vs. skill. It would be etched in Japan's memory forever... Never awaken a sleeping Giant!

Attached Talent: 

Director - Jim Fargo

Teaser Trailer
Submitted: August 17, 2019
Last Updated: August 17, 2019

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The Writer: Chaz Fatur

Chaz Fatur is an optioned, sold & produced Screenwriter/ Filmmaker who was an Actor first, working 15 yrs in the Industry, as well as a Veteran of the US Navy. He got his first Hollywood gig as an Actor on Michael Bay's Pearl Harbor, and fell in love with the whole Filmmaking process, which prompted him to take a Screenwriting class at Ventura College while still serving his Country. Chaz didn't write his first Screenplay until 2004, which is when he established his Film/ TV Prod Co - Scuttlebutt Ent., LLC. Since 2004 until today, he's written over 200+ screenplays, to include Features, TV Pilots/ Webisodes & Short content. He's legally repped & has several projects currently in... Go to bio
Law Firm: Law Office of Rocco E Cozza, PLLC
Lawyer: Rocco Cozza

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