By Carl Gottlieb and Peter Benchley
From the novel by Peter Benchley
Sounds of the innerspaces rushing forward.
Then a splinter of blue light in the centre of the picture.
It breaks wide, showing the top and bottom a silhouetted
curtain of razor sharp teeth suggesting that we are inside
of a tremendous gullet, looking out at the onrushing undersea
world at night. HEAR a symphony of underwater sounds:
landslide, metabolic sounds, the rare and secret noises that
certain undersea species share with each other. Also, the
hint of familiar music, twisted and distorted by the depths.
EXT. BEACH – NIGHT – SHARK’S POINT OF VIEW – RISING OUT OF
THE WATER, LOOKING AT
It is a pleasant, moonlit, windless night in mid-June. We
see a long straight stretch of white beach. Behind the low
dunes are the dark shapes of large expensive houses. Hear a
number of voices singing. It sounds like an eastern
university’s alma mater, no longer distorted.
EXT. BEACH – NIGHT – ANOTHER ANGLE
Around a blazing bonfire, a group of young men and women,
beer cans (or maybe a keg) in evidence, as well as the bota
Spanish leather wine-bag much in favour by beach and ski-bum
The group is swapping sentimental alma maters, weepily singing
eastern Ivy League anthems -– Dartmouth, Cornell, Harvard,
Penn, etc. Two young people break away from the others. They
are Tom Cassidy and Chrissie. Behind them, there is
considerable necking activity; Tom and Chrissie are more
Makes a clumsy attempt at snaring Chrissie, cups her from
behind. She squirms playfully out of his grasp. We discover
he’s not especially sober.
Hey! Hey hey! I’m with you, right?
EXT. ANOTHER PART OF THE BEACH – NIGHT
Tom and Chrissie are separated from the others, silhouetted
against the fire, she pauses and looks at the ocean, he is
plodding along in the sand, winded.
Chrissie runs down the slope of the dune towards the water,
leaving Tom reeling atop the dune. As she runs, she is
shedding her clothes. Tom is trying to trail her by her
clothes, like Hansel following bread crumbs through the woods.
But Chrissie is way ahead of him.
She runs headlong into the inviting sea, plunges cleanly
into the water with a light “Whoops!” as the cold water sweeps
Behind all this, we continue to hear the sentimental, beery
chorus of alma maters.
Then we see it — a gentle bulge in the water, a ripple that
passes her a dozen feet away. A pressure wave lifts her up,
then eases her down again, like a smooth, sudden swell.
Tommy? Don’t dunk me…
She looks around for him, finds him still on the beach, his
feet tangled in his pants, which have dropped around his
ankles. She starts to swim back in to him.
EXT. CHRISSIE IN THE WATER
Her expression freezes. The water-bulge is racing towards
her. The first bump jolts her upright, out of the water to
her hips. She reaches under water to touch her leg. Whatever
she feels makes her open her mouth to scream, but she is
slammed again, hard, whipped into an arc of about eight feet,
up and down, submerging her down to her open mouth, choking
off any scream she might try to make. Another jolt to her
body, driving her under so that only her hair swirls on the
surface. Then it too is sucked below in a final and terrible
jerking motion. HOLD on the eddies and swirls until we’re
sure it’s all over.
EXT. CLOSE ON TOM ON BEACH
In his shorts, laughing to himself, turning in slow stoned
circles, held prisoner by his windbreaker which seems to
have him in an armlock, as he struggles to free his arm from
a tight sleeve. As he turns, we hear the alma maters in the
background, from the fire.
INT. BRODY HOUSE – BEDROOM – EARLY MORNING
A shaft of morning sun blasts through the crack between the
bottom of the shade and the windowsill, falling across the
heads of the sleeping couple on the bed. It catches Martin
Brody right across the eyes, bringing him up from sleep.
The job is completed by the clock radio, which clicks on
with local fisherman’s report and weather.
RADIO ANNOUNCER (V.O.)
Hayes Landing reports conditions
good, with stripers and jacks. The
Coast Guard has no storm warning
from Block Island to Cape Hatteras;
a light chop with freshening winds,
continued clear and mild… (etc.)
Ellen Brody burrows her head under the covers, avoiding
morning for a few precious minutes more.
How come the sun didn’t used to shine
’cause when we bought the house it
was Autumn. This is summer. Feed the
We hear the scampering toenails of two cocker spaniels
scrabbling around the foot of the bed. Brody swings out of
bed, wearing shorts, socks, and tee shirt.
Do you see the kids?
Probably out in the back yard.
In Amity, you say ‘Yahd.’
(she gives it the
The kids are in the yahd, playing
near the cah. How’s that sound?
Like you’re from N’Yawk.
(gives it Brooklyn
Give me 30 years, I’ll get it.
He leads the dogs out of the bedroom and down to the kitchen.
INT. BRODY KITCHEN – MORNING
Brody enters, sets down some dog food, goes to make coffee,
starts to fill kettle to boil water, the cold water rushes
through and out the burnt-out bottom of the kettle.
Did you burn another kettle? Y’know
you’re a fire hazard? This is the
I never hear the whistle.
Feed the dogs.
Ellen Brody, a tall, attractive blonde woman, enters from
upstairs. She’s still slightly sleepy, not what you’d call
an “Instant-On” person. Mornings are not her best time.
You want to go through those?
(she indicates bag of
I’m taking them to the Thrift Shop.
It’s Marcia Vaughn’s pet charity.
Pick out what you want to keep —
it’s mostly your city clothes.
(looking through bag,
I used to wear this to the Garden.
Garbage strikes. Dog shit. Muggers.
(he puts it all behind)
Don’t be silly -– You’re going to
make summer better for them…
Before Brody can answer, Michael, his oldest boy, enters,
holding his hand. There is bright new blood on it, but he is
sensibly unconcerned. It’s a normal childhood scrape.
Cut my hand. Hit by a vampire.
On the swing? I told you not to play
near there until I sanded it down.
See what your son did?
Go upstairs and bring Mommy a band-
Michael goes on out and upstairs. Ellen fumbles in her pocket
and produces Brody’s new glasses, which she holds out to
Don’t forget these.
(he puts them on)
How do I look? Older, huh?
I think they make you look sexy.
Brody reacts to this, and bends to kiss her lightly. Then
Sexy, hm? What was I before?
(as he goes to make
coffee, he fumbles
with the new glasses)
I don’t want to depend on these
things, y’know -– sometimes you can
weaken your eyes.
He looks out the window to the view beyond, discovering some
new wonder in the fresh sunlit morning.
BRODY’S POINT OF VIEW – OUTSIDE THE HOUSE
Sean, the younger child, is happily romping in the summer
air, enjoying the very air he breathes.
The phone rings.
INT. BRODY KITCHEN – DAY
Brody answers one of two phones on the wall.
Brody… yeah, what’s up… mmm…
Well, what do they usually do, float
or wash up? Really?… okay, I’ll
meet both of you at the beach in
…20 minutes, okay? Okay.
First goddamn weekend of the summer.
Michael reenters in bathing trunks, with a towel on his
shoulder, his hand washed, holding a band-aid ready for
application. Ellen takes it, and bandages the finger with
care and affection.
What was that?
Michael heads toward the beach.
(struggling to get
his shirt on over
He gets his shirt on with Ellen’s help. She flicks imaginary
dust from the badge on his chest.
Here? You gotta be kiddin’.
He gives her a light kiss, starts to go, with his cup.
(kissing him back)
Hey Chief. Bring my cup back.
At the door, he takes a windbreaker off a peg and goes on
We can see the Amity Police shoulder patch as he goes to a
van parked outside.
EXT. ISLAND HIGHWAY – MORNING
Martin Brody’s Country Squire police wagon rushes past, taking
the view to an enormous billboard depicting a typical summer
day in Amity. A beautiful model splashes in the gold surf,
languishing in a Solarcaine sun. AMITY WELCOMES YOU is written
above her flailing arms.
EXT. AMITY BEACH – DAY
Three small figures in the landscape, walking the beach. The
surf is rough and there is sea-floor debris strewn about
from the receding tide.
Deputy Hendricks is searching the shore about one hundred
yards down wind. Meanwhile, Brody, in his casual police
attire, and Tom Cassidy, still in the clothing we saw him in
last night, walk down the beach. Brody fingers the missing
girl’s shoes, purse and clothes. In the daylight, Cassidy
misconducts himself, wavering between inflated maturity and
Worthingsly… Worthington — no one
ever died on me before.
You picked her up on the ferry.
I didn’t know her.
And nobody else saw her in the water?
Somebody could’ve — I was sort of
Think she might’ve run out on you?
Oh, no, sir. I’ve never had a woman
do that. I’m sure she drowned.
You from around here?
No. Cambridge. Harvard. My family’s
in Tuxedo, New York, though.
You here for the summer?
Some friends and me took a house.
What d’you pay for a place just for
A thousand apiece, something like
that. There’s five of us. And we
each kick in a hundred a week for
beer and cleaning, stuff like that.
A shrill whistle makes them turn. Hendricks is fifty yards
away, on his knees. He blows again, a feeble report this
Maybe that’s your girl.
Brody runs toward Hendricks, Cassidy hesitates, then follows
You can’t make me look — !
MASTER ANGLE – THE SAND DUNE
A skein of seaweed garnishes the base of this isolated dune.
The booming waves and fizzing surf make dialogue inaudible.
Deputy Hendricks on hands and knees, looking white as a sheet.
Brody tells Cassidy to wait at the foot of the dune, and
ventures up. Hendricks stops him with a wave-off, saying
something at the same time. Brody nods understanding and
steps up cautiously and looks down. He adjusts his glasses,
trying to make sense of what he is looking at.
Whatever he sees has a marked effect on his entire physique.
Kicking out with his foot, Brody sends dozens of angry
horseshoe crabs into an escape frenzy and they boil over the
top of the dune and down its slopes.
Cassidy takes a few uneasy steps backwards when Brody waves
him over. He shakes his head. An awkward moment. Then Cassidy
shuffles forward and up the few remaining feet, his eyes
looking everywhere but down. Brody says something else and
Cassidy shakes his head again, eyes out at sea. Brody puts
his hand gently around the quaking man’s shoulder.
Nodding, he starts to look down, an inch at a time. He looks.
He, too, can’t make out what it is at first. Then he
The jolt that assaults Cassidy is not unexpected. He falls
backward in a sitting position as though shot. Nods yes —
it’s her. Brody turns and slides off the dune, stumbling
close. Hear his breathing. He looks around, envisioning the
week ahead of him….
QUICK SHARP CUT
Chrissie’s remains, incomplete from the chest down, horribly
bitten. (NOTE: See Hooper’s dialog in Sc. 91 for complete
description of corpse.)
INT. BRODY’S OFFICE – DAY
Brody walks through the door and enters his office, holding
a fizzing glass of Alka-Seltzer. Polly, his sixty-one year
old secretary follows close on his heels with her shorthand
pad of messages and reminders.
In the outer office, Hendricks and Cassidy slump into chairs,
sipping from fizzing dixie cups.
Brody dips into file drawers for the appropriate forms. He
gently turns on Polly, who is behind him.
If this is going to work, you’ve got
to keep current stuff out here, and
put ‘closed’ files in there. The
‘Pendings’ stay on my desk, okay?
Brody slips behind his typewriter, putting paper in the
machine with the effortless ease of years of practice. He’s
obviously no stranger to paperwork. He touch types, hardly
ever looking down, checking his notes and listening with one
ear to Polly.
He is affected by what he’s seen, but there’s work to be
This is in no order of importance,
Chief: There’s a meeting on the Amity
Town Council on Aging this Monday
night, Bentoncourt Hall. The Fire
Inspector wants you to go over the
fireworks site with him before he
catches the one o’clock ferry. Mainly,
you have a batch of calls about that
new Karate school.
CLOSE – ACCIDENT REPORT
Brody has just typed the girl’s name. He skips the space for
Cause-of-Death, and just under it types the Next-of-Kin
information he has collected from her wallet.
Searle’s Rent-a-Bike, the Rainy Ale,
Tisberry’s Hardware… they say it’s
those nine-year-olds from the school
practicing karate on all those nice
The phone rings and Polly picks it up.
It’s the Coroner. Somebody pass away
in the night?
Brody nestles the phone between ear and collar, listening,
as he turns to the typewriter.
INSERT – ACCIDENT REPORT
Cause-of-Death line rolls into place. The hammers punch out:
leans forward, staring at what he just wrote. Polly cocks
her head and removes the phone from his ear.
What’s the matter?
Brody takes a breath. A new resolve comes over him.
Polly, I want to know what water
recreation is on for today.
Right this minute?
Brody gets up and moves hastily toward the door.
BRODY’S OUTER OFFICE
Cassidy and Hendricks look up as Brody enters.
Where’d you hide the ‘Beach Closed’
We never had any. What’s the problem?
A local merchant comes through the door.
Glad I caught you. There’s a city
truck with New Hampshire plates parked
right in front of my…
Brody pushes past him and out the door.
EXT. AMITY MAIN STREET – DAY
In the busy centre of a town preparing for the big Fourth of
July weekend, Brody wends his way around sidewalk activity,
purpose and haste in each stride. As he turns a corner a
little man in a white smock emerges from the Funeral Parlor.
This is Carl Santos, Amity’s part-time coroner. Santos looks
both ways before crossing Colonial Drive.
Brody passes Keisel’s Bicycle Rental, navigating an awkward
course through an odd assortment of Schwinns that line the
sidewalk in front of a demolished white picket fence. Keisel
intercepts Brody on the run.
(he stares at Brody’s
(stares some more)
Brody nods yes, and starts to move away, but Keisel holds on
Look at those fences! Little guys
about eight to ten years old. And
look at this!
He holds up bicycle. The bicycle’s spokes are bent and broken
from some sort of blows.
They did that with their bare hands.
Call me later in the day, okay, Harry?
ANGLE – AMITY GAZETTE NEWSPAPER OFFICE – PORCH
Santos emerges with Ben Meadows, the stylish, late-thirties
editor of the Amity Gazette. Together they cut a beeline for
the other side of the street.
ANGLE – AMITY STREET
Past taverns and chowder shacks, past bleacher construction
and July Fourth posters, Brody enters Hardware and Sporting
Goods… so overstocked that beach umbrellas, aluminum deck
chairs, and rainbow beach towels splash a surplus of color
from the display window to the sidewalk.
INT. HARDWARE STORE – DAY
The store proprietor is busy at work on an inventory list
with a mainland delivery man.
Stuff’s no good to me in August when
the Pilgrims come in June…
Go on and help yourself to whatever
you need, Chief. Can you work the
EXT. HARDWARE STORE AND STREET – DAY
Brody emerges with enough poster-board, wooden stakes, nails,
paint, and brushes to close every beach on the island. He
starts back the way he came when Hendricks shoots up the
street in the patrol jeep. He stops fast enough to call
attention, leans out the window.
Polly told me to tell you there’s a
scout troop in Avril Bay doing the
mile swim for their Merit Badges. I
couldn’t call them in, there’s no
phone out there.
(hands him the sign
Get out of there – take these back
to the office and make up some ‘Beach
Closed’ signs, and let Polly do the
What’s the matter with my printing?
EXT. VAUGHN’S REALTY – DAY
Revealing Larry Vaughn, the Mayor of Amity, exchanging
anxieties with Ben Meadows and Coroner Santos and two other
city Selectmen. They come out in a group, reach the sunlight,
and squint down the street as Brody careens around the corner
and out of sight. Deputy Hendricks, laden with his arts and
crafts, passes them on the street front.
What have you got there, Lenny?
We had a shark attack at South Chop
this morning, Mayor. Fatal. Gotta
batten down the beach.
Vaughn and group exchange horrified looks, but we get the
impression it is not in response to the shark-attack news.
Who’ve you told this to, Lenny?
I just found out about it — but
there’s a bunch of Boy Scouts in the
water a coupla miles down the coast
from where we found the girl. Avril
Bay, thereabouts. Chief went to dry
Take my car, okay?
You come with us, Lenny.
I’ve got all these signs here…
C’mon, it’ll give us time to think
about what they’re going to say.
They all crowd into a Cadillac El Dorado with Vaughn Realty
signs on the doors.
EXT. AVRIL BAY – DAY
A flotilla of twenty exhausted Boy Scouts round a buoy that
marks the official course. A rowboat with Scoutmaster using
a bullhorn keeps pace, and urges the boys on.
Let’s go, Robbie. You too, Hofner.
Boyle, keep your head up. Alberts,
(etc., ad lib)
EXT. ON THE BEACH AT AVRIL BAY – DAY
Two older Seascouts look on with stop watches and clipboards,
while some Parents shade their eyes from the sun, watching
their offspring. Brody pulls up in the Amity Police jeep,
and starts toward the people. Behind him, Vaughn’s Cadillac
pulls up and skids to a stop. In it are Vaughn, Meadows, the
Doctor, maybe a Selectman, and Hendricks, with his arms still
full of sign material. Vaughn intercepts Brody, the others
circle around him, effectively slowing his progress through
the sand to the scouts.
(he catches up with
Are you going to shut down the beach
on your own authority?
Do I need any more authority?
Technically, you need the instruction
of a civic ordinance, or a special
meeting of the town selectmen…
(the good guy)
That’s just going by the book. We’re
just a little anxious that you’re
rushing into something serious here.
This is your first summer.
Now tell me something I don’t know.
All I’m saying is that Amity is a
summer town — we need summer dollars,
and if they can’t swim here, they’ll
use the beaches at Cape Cod, or Long
So we should set out a smorgasbord?
We’re not even sure what it was.
What else could’ve done that?
I think, possibly… sure. A boating
Some weekend tramp accidentally goes
swimming too far, she’s a little
drunk, a fishing boat comes along —
Remember when Fred Ganz went
scalloping in his BVD’s? He was going
to swim to New Bedford, he said.
The men all laugh, ad lib their remembrances of this
…and Bill Mayhew almost caught him
in his net…?
Doctor, you’re the one who told me
what it was!
I was wrong. We’ll have to amend the
We never had that kind of trouble
I don’t think you can appreciate the
gut reaction people have to these
I was only reacting to what I was
Brody looks out to the water where the scouts are rounding
another buoy on the home stretch.
(taking Brody aside)
It’s all psychological, anyway. You
yell ‘Barracuda’ and everyone says
‘huh’. You yell ‘Shark’ and we’ve
got a panic on our hands. I think we
all agree we don’t need a panic this
close to the 4th of July.
Vaughn indicates the beach where the Scouts are flopping out
onto the sand, exhausted, glad to be finished.
I can’t work in a vacuum. Why don’t
you make Hendricks Chief? His family’s
been here since the Puritans — half
this island are his cousins.
Martin, we hired the best man we
All ad lib agreement.
We need someone who isn’t prejudiced
by old feuds or family ties, someone
who can referee things.
You have our complete support.
Now then. We’ve got a vandalism
problem we ought to talk about…
The others surround Brody as Vaughn leads the way back to
the cars, ad libbing their problem with the little karate
Hendricks puts the signs back into the trunk of Vaughn’s
Cadillac. Vaughn waves casually to the Scouts and swimmers
who are vigorously toweling off in the background.
EXT. AMITY STREET – DAY
In front of Amity’s only Music Store, a battered old pick-up
truck pulls in to the curb. Quint and his mate cross silently
heading into the music store.
INT. AMITY MUSIC STORE – DAY
A gently tinkling bell tolls Quint’s entrance. Inside the
store, a ten-year-old boy is being shown a clarinet. He is
playing a mellow low tone, and running “Ode to Joy.” Quint
looms past him like Neptune rising from the deep, and lets
his hand drop on the counter with a slap that sounds like a
club on flesh. The Shopkeeper abandons the little boy and
Hello, Mr. Quint.
Four spools of Number 12 piano wire,
Okay? I ordered them.
(finding them under
Yessir, right here. What do those
fish do, eat this stuff?
They choke on it.
Without waiting for it to be wrapped, he picks up the gleaming
wire in his gnarled fist, and drops a bill on the counter.
No answer from Quint, who stops and sings along with the
The little kid’s music degenerates into a series of awkward
squeaks and blurps, as Quint stares at him. Quint continues
out the door, threading his way through the people in the
street like some great fish. As he gets up into the cab of
his pick-up, its door swings open so we can see a crude
stylized shark decorating its side. It slams behind him as
Quint gets in and drives away.
EXT. AMITY BEACH – DAY
A plump jelly-bowl of a woman plunges into the ocean. There’s
enough there to satisfy the most gluttonous shark. Buoyant,
joyful, she splashes away in abandon. From her, we pan off
to reveal other cheerful bathers enjoying that last
uncluttered weekend before the season starts in earnest.
ANGLE ON THE WATERLINE
A Man and his dog are romping at the water’s edge. The Man
is throwing a stick out into the surf, the dog, a happy
retriever, is bounding into the waves after it.
TWO YOUNG PEOPLE ON THE BEACH
A Girl and her Boyfriend leave their blanket and run for the
water, playing tag, chasing each other, having a wonderful
ANGLE ON BIRTHDAY PARTY ON THE SAND – MARTIN AND ELLEN BRODY
He is sitting stiffly in a beach chair, scanning the beach
with careful, cautious looks, eyeballing everything that’s
Around their particular blanket and umbrella are a number of
adults and their kids, the youngsters gathered to celebrate
Michael’s birthday. Ellen is dishing out ice cream and cake
from a cooler chest to the raucous 10-year-olds. Michael’s
hand is still bandaged.
Looks like another big season. Gets
worse every year.
And none of them from the Island.
Just a lot of bother.
Brody (and we) hear a shrill scream from the water. He
stretches to look past the group, to see what’s happening
BRODY’S POINT OF VIEW – THE WATER
The young lady is disappearing under the water, pulled under
the waves by some force. She is shrieking. She pops right up
again riding the shoulders of her boyfriend, who pulled her
under. She’s laughing hysterically. Brody is unamused.
Present company excepted, but off-
islanders are a pain in the butt.
Pardon my French.
Ellen captures Sean, and holds him playfully, an example.
What about this kid? What if he were
born here. That make him an islander?
Just ’cause a cat has kittens in an
oven, it don’t make them muffins.
I’m not a muffin! I’m a boy!
Brody rumples his hair and sets him off to play.
ANGLE ON ANOTHER SMALL BOY, PLAYING ALONE
It’s Alex Kintner, and his mother, nearby, reading a novel.
Alex is towing a funny rubber raft, and headed for the water.
Alex! Alex Kintner! Where do you
think you’re going?
Water. Just once more, please?
Let me see your fingers —
He holds out his hands.
They’re beginning to prune. 10 minutes
Alex starts for the ocean. Behind him, Michael and his gang
are also heading for the inviting waves. Brody is watching
them go, his spine rigid with tension.
MAN AND HIS DOG
As Alex and the boys hit the water, we see the man throwing
his stick into the waves, his dog swimming strongly after
BRODY’S POINT OF VIEW
Out beyond the kids and the dog, the Fat Lady is bobbing
around, out way too far, isolated from the other swimmers.
UNDERWATER VIEW – EXT. – DAY
A fish’s-eye view of the bathers: lots of little kicking
legs, rafts with tasty arms dangling in the blue, slowing
circling, favouring one raft (little Alex’s). The Kintner
boy’s legs and arms are kicking and paddling, producing
bizarre underwater vibrations of more than passing interest.
Dog goes by, dog-paddling along.
ON THE BEACH
Brody is half-rising, looking out over the water. The Fat
Lady is not where he remembered her. He scans the water
Do you want the boys to come in?
Honey, if you’re worried…
A Black Object swims across the water. It’s the dog, breasting
against the surf.
ANGLE ON THE WATER – BRODY’S POINT OF VIEW
It’s the Fat Lady, floating, relaxing. A black object swims
up to her. It’s not the dog. It rears up out of the water.
It’s a man in a black bathing cap. They exchange distant
pleasantries, he strokes away.
ANOTHER ANGLE – WATER
Alex Kintner, paddling around, making boat sounds, tooting,
going “vroom, vroom.”
ANGLE ON THE BOY AND GIRL
They kiss, embrace, kiss again. Strong stuff. They sink
beneath the waves, knotted in an embrace.
ANGLE ON MICHAEL BRODY AND HIS FRIENDS
He’s trying to salvage a soggy piece of birthday cake, holding
it above the water, paddling with his other hand. The bandage
has come part way loose, and his cut is trailing in the water.
BRODY AND ELLEN ON THE BEACH
Ellen is rubbing suntan oil on his back, and he is allowing
himself to relax part way. His eyes still nervously scan the
beach in a constant surveillance. Mr. Keisel is coming out
of the water, toweling off vigorously, exclaiming to himself.
How’s the water?
Too cold. I’m going in again Labor
Day. Hope we get this weather next
You’re very tight, y’know?
(he sees something)
He’s gotta be more careful in the
ANGLE ON THE GANG PLAYING IN THE WATER
Michael has just been drenched. He splashes back. A big
waterfight ensues, the boys splashing and chopping at the
water, shouting battle cries and karate whoops. Alex is
paddling around near them, but not involved with them.
ALONG THE WATERLINE ON THE BEACH
The Man with the Dog is whistling into the ocean, looking
for his dog.
Buster! Hey, Buster! Here boy!
He continues to ad lib calling his
dog, but there’s no answer, no dog
in the water.
A huge splash explodes in the water near the gang, an eruption
of foam and spray that stops everyone cold for a moment.
They stop to see who was responsible.
A KID (MATHEW)
Hey, no fair splashing in the eyes!
Before anyone can answer, another kid (P.J.) renews the
battle, whooping a karate cry, and slashing at the water
with his hand like a little kung-fu warrior, advancing through
CLOSE ON MATHEW, SPLASHING BACK
He hits the water, which sprays up suspiciously pink. He
stares at it, surprised.
CLOSE ON P.J.
His hands are dripping deep pink, the red matting his hair,
running into his eyes. He looks down. The boys are surrounded
with a deep pink slick, their little bodies ringed by a
spreading stain of blood.
ANGLE ON SHORE, A TOURIST AND HIS WIFE
He’s pointing frantically out to sea.
Something in the water. Right there!
Didn’t anyone see it?
There’s blood in the water.
ANGLE ON BRODY
He leaps to his feet, nearly knocking Ellen over, and starts
for the water.
What is it…?
Brody is pelting towards the water. He kicks sand over an
annoyed Mrs. Kintner, who looks up, just in time to hear
Michael! Sean! Out of the water.
Everybody out of the water! Michael!
His urgency communicates itself to the others. Ellen snatches
Sean up from where he’s been playing in the sand. Other
parents are calling their kids, hysteria mounting. People
rush into the water, dragging their children and families
bodily out of the ocean. The first kids coming out of the
surf are frantically trying to wash the sticky blood off
their bodies. The sight of the red sends the beach into a
CLOSE ON BRODY
He rushes into the water, up to his ankles, and suddenly
stops, unable to move into deeper water. He is urging Michael
out, holding his hands out to his son, who is slogging through
the surf towards his dad. He stands there immobilized by the
water, nervously helping people out of it onto the beach.
ANGLE ON MICHAEL
As he emerges from the water, Alex Kintner’s raft washes in
behind him, ripped in half, the water pink, the foam spreading
the stain onto the sand as the wave breaks.
ANGLE ON MRS. KINTNER
Her voice rising into panic and hysteria with each unanswered
Alex! Alex? Alex…!
EXT – THE COUNTY COURTHOUSE AND COUNTY OFFICES – DAY
We are looking at the closed double white front doors of the
building, through which we can hear a rolling boil of agitated
conversation. After a beat, they open to reveal Mrs. Kintner,
looking as though she has been visited by the wrath of God;
in effect, she has. Her eyes are puffy and swollen from
weeping, her clothing is put on and fastened awkwardly, her
gait is not normal. As she walks toward us, Quint enters
with his back to us, they pass without notice; Mrs. Kintner
moving out of sight, Quint leading us through the doors into
the town hall.
INT. COUNTY COURTHOUSE – DAY
A crowd of angry men and women throng the central hallway,
their voices a babble of confusion. Many of them are gathered
around a roughly lettered notice that has been posted on the
town’s official bulletin board. It reads.
“A $3000 BOUNTY TO THE MAN OR MEN WHO CATCH AND KILL THE
SHARK THAT KILLED ALEX M. KINTNER ON SUNDAY, JUNE 29, ON THE
AMITY TOWN BEACH.”
Vaughn and Brody are on the outskirts of the crowd, which
includes Meadows, some selectmen, and others.
Look, I’ve got to talk to her. This
isn’t a contest we want the whole
I agree. If she’s going to advertise,
I wouldn’t recommend out-of-town
papers. Amity people could take care
I’m responsible for public safety
Then go out tomorrow and make sure
no one gets hurt.
(addressing the crowd)
Everybody, could I have your
attention? Since this affects all of
us, I suggest we move into council
chambers, where there’s more room…
There is a flurry and a bustle as everyone rearranges
themselves and makes their way into the Amity Selectmen’s
INT. COUNCIL CHAMBER – DAY
The crowd is thronging into the large room. Already in the
room is a solitary figure, standing all the way in the rear,
watching everyone as they enter. Against the back wall is a
large blackboard used for town business during meetings.
Well, here we all are; anyone have
any special questions?
Is that $3000 bounty on the shark in
cash or check?
(laughter from all)
That’s private business between you
brave fishermen and Mrs. Kintner.
— Chief —
I’d like to tell you what we’re doing
so far. These are some of the steps
I’ve taken as Chief of Police…
(leading the direction
of the discussion)
What’s going on with the beaches,
I’ll get to that in a minute. First,
I plan to start our seasonal summer
help early, and to use shark spotters
on beaches open to the sea. I’d like
cooperation from local fishermen,
and I’ve also contacted the
Oceanographic Institute over on the
(Interrupting — sotto
voice to Brody)
No need to involve outsiders in our
Are you going to close the beaches?
Larry and I have also decided to
close the beaches for a short time.
Pandemonium. A collective nerve has been touched.
Only 24 hours!
I didn’t agree to that!
That official business could take
Maybe it’s better to close.
Two opinions have been expressed, and the crowd takes sides
vociferously, ad libbing assent or dissent depending on the
point of view held forth.
THOSE IN FAVOUR
We should make sure
there is no danger.
I didn’t raise my kids to be some
The motel is all I own —
you pull the plug on this
town and I go down the
drain with it.
Nobody’s seen a shark.
We’ll lose business, we
lose taxes, we lose our
ANGLE ON QUINT, THE MAN IN THE BACK OF THE ROOM
He has just run his large, coarse fingernails over the
blackboard. He is a large, rough man, a professional fisherman
marked by daily physical toil, About 45 or 50, it’s hard to
tell where the scars leave off and the wrinkles begin. There
is a bit of the showman in him, as well as a bit of killer-
(after taking a deep
You all know me. You know what I do
for a living. I’ll go out and get
this bird for you. He’s a bad one
and it’s not like goin’ down the
pond chasing blue-gills and tommy-
cods. This is a fish that can swallow
a man whole. A little shakin’, a
little tenderizing and down ya’ go.
(a look to Vaughn)
You gotta get this fellow and get
him quick. If you do, it’ll bring a
lot of tourist business just to see
him and you’ve got your business
back on a paying basis.
A shark of that size is no pleasure
and I value my neck at a hell of a
lot more’n 3,000 bucks.
(a deadly look)
I’ll find him for three. But I’ll
kill him for ten.
(he rises up)
The bastard is costing you more’n
that every day. Do you wanna stay
alive and annee up the ten or play
it cheap and be on welfare next
(a final moment)
I’m gonna kill this thing… just a
matter of whether I do it now — or
at the end of summer.
Thank you very much, Mr. Quint, the
Selectmen will take your offer under
INT. BRODY’S STUDY AT HOME – SUNSET
A riffly blur, color alternating with black and white. The
dizziness stops on a book page showing a black and white
rendering of eight species of shark. The banner at the top
of the page reads: THE KNOWN AND REPUTED MANEATERS.
The riffling begins again, stops on a grizzly photograph of
scar tissue on six former shark victims. Riffling — stop.
Photograph of five Ichthyologists posing on wooden stools,
framed by the enormous jaws of a prehistoric shark from the
family Carcharodon charcharias.
his reading glasses reflecting a stack of twelve library
books, all on the subject of sharks and shark attacks. The
door opens and Ellen enters, quietly, in respect for Brody’s
Can you stand something to eat?
Love a cup of tea. With lemon.
Ellen walks past Brody to the window and looks out the window
which overlooks the south bay. It is the hour of dusk.
Mikey loves his birthday present.
Where is he?
(with a slight laugh)
He’s sitting in it.
Brody gets up, concerned, and joins her at the window.
Honey. He has it tied up to the jetty
with a double-knot.
BRODY’S POINT OF VIEW
Michael is sitting in the boat, but two of his young school
chums are in the water, swimming around it. Brody opens the
window and calls down:
Son! — Out of the water now!
My boat’s neat, dad!
(turning to Ellen)
I want him out of the ocean.
It’s three feet deep, Martin
Michael! Come inside!
It’s his birthday present, and you
closed the beach, Honey. I told him
not to go in the water after what
happened yesterday. I don’t believe
he’ll ever do it again.
I told him not to go out until he
memorized the handbook and the safety
safety regulations, until he was
sure of himself…
Ellen’s eyes drift down to the open book, which is displaying
a reproduction of the famous painting “The Gulf Stream,”
showing a black fisherman in a small dinghy similar to
Michael’s being assaulted by the jaws of three man-eating
sharks, circling his boat.
You heard your father! Out right
SUNSET ON THE BEACH
Hendricks and another deputy are assisting Brody. Silhouettes
of townspeople look on like mourners at a funeral.
In the background some workmen are taking down the shutters
from a quaint summer cottage. They pause to watch the
declining moments of the day.
Three Selectmen also stand watching. One of them seems to be
whispering bounty news to three youngish men on a nearby
Sounds: Surf and hammering.
EXT. OCEAN AND PIER – NIGHT
Selectman Denherder and his buddy, Charlie, a professional
angler, row towards a tumble-down jetty that leads fifty
feet out into the black water.
You wanna call it a night after here?
It’s only two-thirty. What, are you
Yeah, Charlie, I got my second wind
three nibbles back.
Denherder hefts a bloodstained laundry bag from the
wheelbarrow, revealing about a hundred feet of coiled dog
chain and a large patched inner tube. Charlie takes out a
monster hook and together they push the wheelbarrow onto the
rickety pier that is only about five feet across.
(reaching into the
Leg of lamb this time?
Screw lamb — let’s shoot the sirloin!
(a hyena laugh)
We’re blowin’ half the bounty on
The splintered pier sways to and fro as the men reach the
end and start to work. Charlie baits the hook with a massive
chunk of sirloin while Denherder secures the loose end of
chain to a skinny piling. Charlie then fastens the inner
tube to the chain five feet from the end of the hook.
One more after this, then I’m going
Denherder tugs the chain against the piling to prove that it
- Charlie heaves the bait. Splash! The inner tube follows
and both men eagerly watch as it floats seaward, the chain
playing out from the wheelbarrow.
Tide’s taking it right out.
Charlie lights his pipe and sits back against a piling. He
turns on his transistor radio and loops one end around a
fractured board. Denherder paces, bored to death.
You do this all the time, right,
I can’t believe that people pay money
to go fishing. This is really dumb.
This isn’t even relaxing… it’s
CLOSE – CHAIN IN WHEELBARROW
Suddenly zipping out, faster and faster, as both men
Denherder is goggle-eyed.
Hey! What’s this?
The chain is coming out so fast that it begins to drag the
wheelbarrow to the end of the jetty. A section of chain
tangles around the handle and flips the entire machine into
the air. Both men watch dumbfounded as the inner tube, racing
out to sea in a wake of white water, suddenly dips under.
Look at him take it!
Do I set the goddam hook?
Let him do it! Go-go-go-go-go!
It is then that the chain whips taut against the narrow
CLOSE – PILING
A lineup of five decrepit 2 x 4 inch pilings SNAP with a
ANGLE – JETTY
The end of the jetty is yanked loose. Denherder is flipped
like a chip over the side and into the cold night water,
where he manages to snag hold of a splintered timber.
DENHERDER’S POINT OF VIEW
The severed section of jetty, a joined platform of footboards,
is being dragged seaward with Charlie sitting dazed on top
of it, his lit pipe still going.
Charlie rolls into the water, sputters, turns to watch the
flotilla of wood draw away.
CLOSE – CHARLIE
CHARLIE’S POINT OF VIEW
The end of the jetty makes a 180-degree turn and heads back
in his direction.
Holy Jesus Christ!
Denherder steps up on the broken-off piling just to be out
of the water.
Get the hell out! Charlie! Swim!
Charlie, inhaling terror, trying to slog to shore. The jetty
is getting closer. Suddenly, an enormous black fin breaks
water like a periscope, making course corrections as it comes
Denherder jumps from piling to piling, almost losing his
balance on his way to help Charlie. Charlie has reached the
last pylon toward open sea, and his hands clamber for a hold.
INSERT – CHARLIE’S HANDS
The algae is too slippery, and his fingers keep sliding back.
That’s when the fin behind him seems to reach up to the sky
and Charlie manages, with Denherder’s desperate help, to
make it safely to shore. The remains of the pier float belly-
up in the inlet.
CLOSE ON THE HARBORMASTER OF AMITY – DAY
He is sitting on a little canvas folding chair, eating a
bowl of Cheerios with milk and sugar, watching a panorama of
ineptitude and greed unfold before his old seaman’s eyes.
The Amity Pier area is a minor madhouse: out-of-state cars
elbow local vehicles for parking space at the foot of the
dock, and a parade of bounty-hunting townspeople, islanders,
off-islanders, tourist, and others shout and push their way
onto the crowded pier, each carrying some bizarre or
appropriate tool for the real or imagined capture of an
unarmed shark of indeterminate size.
Rods and reels, drop lines, crossbows, slingshots, harpoons,
shotguns, rifles, nets and tridents; every fishing supply
store and sporting goods house within a hundred miles has
been cannibalized to equip this weird array.
ANGLE ON BRODY AND HENDRICKS ARRIVING ON THE SCENE
Not having room to bring their police vehicle anywhere near
this mess, they are proceeding on foot into the confusion.
…So then Denherder and Charlie sat
there trying to catch their breath,
and figuring out how to explain to
Charlie’s wife what happened to her
freezer full of meat.
That wasn’t funny.
Some of the locals greet Hendricks with occasional nods of
recognition, or an ad libbed “Hi, Lenny,” or “Hey, Lenny.”
Mrs. Kintner must’ve put her ad in
Field and Stream.
Looks more like the readers of the
ANGLE ON BOAT RENTAL – PIER
An argument is in progress between and Out-of-Towner and the
Boat Rental Man.
You’re charging me double the usual
rent! I didn’t come up here all the
way from New Rochelle to be gouged
by some Yankee Cracker!
BOAT RENTAL MAN
Prices go up June First every year.
You want a nice cheap, leaky boat,
you go down to the Hamptons.
(he sees Brody)
ANGLE LOOKING OUT TO SEA
Making its way through the channel towards the dock is a
sleek, expensive runabout with the name “Fascinatin’ Rhythm”
on the stern. It’s professionally handled, and rumbles in as
it coasts in towards the dock area. Some other boats clear
the way for it, zig-zagging in the harbor, causing an annoying
CLOSE ON BOAT
Matt Hooper, a bearded, bespectacled young man with an intent
look, is maneuvering the vessel peering through his windscreen
at the ragtag collection of seafaring loonies all around
BACK TO DOCKSIDE
Hendricks is mediating the argument between the two men, and
we can hear a plaintive “But Lenny,” from the local as Brody
sees something that makes him move towards the other side of
the dock. We see him cross to a little boat built for two or
three that is settling low in the water as a seventh man
climbs in with his gear.
Hey! You know how many men that’s
supposed to hold?
MAN IN BOAT (WALTER)
Whatever’s safe, right?
What you got ain’t safe. You take
some guys off or you don’t go out.
BEN GARDNER AND HIS BOAT, FLICKA
Matt Hooper is gliding into the dockside, and Ben throws him
a line to help make fast as he moors. It’s a small island of
courtesy in an otherwise discourteous mob. Hooper nods
politely as he ties his boat up and steps onto the dock.
He’s standing near where Brody is finishing after his
encounter with the chummers.
Brody approaches Ben Gardner.
You going out too, Ben?
Might give it a try. That three
thousand bounty beats working for a
(yells to his Mate)
The Mate nods “Yes” and starts to prepare to get under way.
Ben and his Mate move away from the dock, headed towards the
channel and the open sea leaving Felix and Pratt to scamper
around the dock looking for another ride.
ANOTHER DOCK AREA, CLOSE BY
A particularly awkward moment between a small sailboat and a
couple of powerboats. The sailboat is trying to hoist sail
to make it away from the pier under sail, a real yachtsman’s
conceit, since Hornblower himself probably couldn’t navigate
through this mess. Brody, a landlubber for sure, is trying
to direct traffic to untangle this new mess.
Just back up! No, the other way! Cut
it to your left! Your other left!
The big boat, your front end is out
way too far. Little boat, stay still!
Amidst all this, we can hear the angry shouts of the entangled
SKIPPER 1 (THE SAILBOAT)
Dammit, a vessel under sail has the
right of way!
SKIPPER 2 (MOTORBOAT)
You schmuck, you ain’t under sail,
you’re goddam drifting!
(stepping in to help)
Ahoy, sail! You got an oar? Well,
scull it out!
Tell that stinkpotter to belay!
Tell that ragsetter I’m going to
poke him in the snoot!
Just cast off in turn and make for
the channel, OK?
Brody starts back towards the shore, Hooper is by his side.
Excuse me, I wonder if you could
Before he can finish, Brody spots something on shore that
moves him to shout to his deputy.
Is that dynamite?
Brody looks, and stops by a boat that’s about to cast off.
He holds out his hand.
If that’s dynamite, give it here, or
don’t leave port.
Aw, c’mon, it’s just fireworks. Sharks
like fireworks, it attracts them.
Hand it over.
The man passes Brody a cigar box filled with dynamite sticks.
Brody tucks the dynamite under his arm, and continues down
the pier. Hooper is still with him.
All around them are two distinctly different breeds; the
quiet pros, like Ben Gardner, in well-worn, comfortable
clothes, with efficient, sensible gear, and the amateur
crazies, with all manner of weapons and impractical, silly
INT. DOCK SHED – DAY
Brody is on the phone, talking to his office, trying to get
Hendricks’ attention. He throws a handful of washers at the
There’s a fantail launch out there
that won’t make it beyond the
You’re tellin’ me. I swear, this
town has gone crazy.
Officer, I wonder if you could tell
me where I could find Chief Brody?
Who are you?
Hooper, Matt Hooper. From the
(holds out his hand)
EXTERIOR – OCEAN – DAY
Ben Gardner’s boat is in the lead with Gardner’s shouting
derisive comments at the crowd headed out from land. The
armada is spread out and moving in a ragged circle, fifteen
boats in all. One man heaves cherry bombs into the water. A
smaller boat going in the opposite direction offers us
Barwood, forking spaghetti leftovers into the ocean while
his friend pours out a bottle of ketchup.
A speedboat chugs by, one of the occupants reading
instructions aloud from a book entitled “Sharks – East Coast,
boatload of impoverished scallop fishermen throw a net
overboard, full of gaps and split ends. The professionals
look professional, but the landlubbers out for the $3000
make it impossible for everybody. Collisions are barely
THE RUBE GOLDBERG ERROR
The Out-of-Towner in a small boat is bent over in a life and
death struggle, his rod in a tight arc. His buddy leaps across
to lend a hand.
Twenty yards away in another boat the same struggle ensues.
This time it’s the overloaded boat with the poor scallop
fishermen. Shouts of I’M ON! DIG IN! STRIKE! Then a tangle
of tackle springs from the water. They have hooked each other.
Joy turns to swearing. Arnold Felix stands up to applaud
the mishap, while his buddy Pratt takes careful aim with his
Remington 1100 12-gauge and blasts at the tackle as if it
were a clay pigeon. The tangle explodes —
Both the Out-of-Towners and the Scallop Fisherman falls over
ANGLE – HARRY’S BOAT
Three men are aboard, one holding a rod which holds a fast
arc. A few yards off stern we see a triangular dorsal fin
crossing back and forth, struggling, jerking, the mighty
tail threshing. One man is screaming success, the other two
slapping the angler on the back.
CLOSE – PRATT AND FELIX
They spot it and sour.
Well, get over there! He ain’t caught
The owner of Pratt’s boat throws it forward and Pratt removes
a .45 automatic from the holster of his belt. He tests it,
firing once in the air. As they near the scene of the
struggle, eleven other boats begin converging, until —
Everyone wants to get into the act. They are attacking the
threshing beast with all they’ve got. Pratt uses his
automatic, another blasts point blank with a shotgun. There
are occasional water ricochets and the bounty hunters duck
from time to time as bullets skip by. Finally, the shark
FELIX AND PRATT
Their boat has moved close to the shark, closer than Harry’s.
Hand me that pole! Quick!
One of his party in the over-filled boat grabs a gaff and
leans out to grab the moribund shark. But Harry won’t give
up the line, still reeling in.
Beat it! I hooked him!
How’s the family, Harry?
(to the man with gaff)
Go on and do it!
MAN WITH GAFF
We split down the middle?
Pratt nods reluctantly. The man swings, lodges the gaff and
hauls the shark up onto the gunwale. A paroxysm of cheers
from the surrounding boats. Smoke flares are fired into the
Let go my shark!
It is a ten-foot tiger, and what a mess — splattered with
bullet punctures, gashes, bleeding from several orifices.
But it is not dead — it kicks back to life and threatens to
capsize the boat. Pratt panics and fires six times with his
.45. The bullets pierce the shark’s head, pass through, and
split the fiberglass hull through which a flood of water
rises. Everybody stands up as the boat slips beneath them.
INT. MORGUE – DAY
The Amity Morgue is also the Amity Funeral Home, a Victorian
house that normally serves as the community’s mortuary. The
Coroner, a professional small-town GP, is standing by as
Hooper is speaking into a sophisticated cassette recorder
with a headpiece that leaves his hands free for measurement
with a calibrator or calipers.
Let’s show Mr. Hooper our accident.
With a shrug, the Coroner slides open the drawer.
CLOSE ON HOOPER
He is looking down as the drawer slides past him, still matter-
of-fact, turning on his recorder.
Victim One, identified as Christine
Watkins, female Caucasian…
The sheet has just been lifted, and Hooper stares down at
the lump on the slab. He stops, turns off his recorder as
emotions wage war with his senses. Rationality wins, and he
turns on the recorder again.
…height and weight may only be
estimated from partial remains. Torso
severed in mid-thorax, eviscerated
with no major organs remaining. May
I have a drink of water? Right arm
severed above the elbow with massive
tissue loss from upper musculature.
Portions of denuded bone remaining.
(tense, to Brody)
— did you notify the coast guard?
No, it was local jurisdiction.
Left arm, head, shoulders, sternum
and portions of ribcage intact.
Please don’t smoke. With minor post-
mortem lacerations and abrasions.
Bite marks indicate typical non-frenzy
feeding pattern of large squali,
possibly carchaninus lonimanus, or
isurus glaucas. Gross tissue loss
and post-mortem erosion of bite
surfaces prevent detailed analysis;
however, teeth and jaws of the
attacking squali must be considered
above average for these waters.
(to Brody again)
— Did you go out in a boat and look
No, we just checked the beach…
(turns off the recorder)
It wasn’t an ‘accident,’ it wasn’t a
boat propeller, or a coral reef, or
Jack the Ripper. It was a shark. It
was a shark.
EXT. DOCK AREA – DAY
We open close on ugly, open shark’s jaws, still oozing blood
and gore. As the shark is hoisted up into the air on a gin-
pole hoist dockside, Meadows is seen passing with his
secretary and a photographer from the Amity Gazette. A crowd
of returning fishermen from the Armada and townspeople are
gathering around the fish as it is hoisted tail-up into the
classic sports fisherman’s trophy shot.
Ginny, get this out on the state
wire to AP and UPI in Boston and New
York. Have one of them pick it up
for the national and call Dave Axelrod
in New York and tell him this is
from me and he owes me one… let’s
get a picture.
As he and the photographer turn to mob, we see Hooper and
Brody arriving from the morgue. Hooper immediately heads
towards the shark, while Brody pauses and we see a look of
relief and delight cross his features.
Well, if one man can catch a fish in
50 days, then I guess 50 of these
bozos can catch a fish in one day —
(crossing to men around
You did it! Did Ben Gardner catch
Men ad lib “No, I caught it…” “I hooked him,” etc.
Okay, everybody, I want to get a
picture for the paper — could
everyone clear out of the way?
He continues to call directions and move people out of the
way to set up his shot. Hooper is measuring the shark.
Could you get out of the shot, young
Who, me? Okay…
(he drifts off)
The men (Felix, Pratt, et al) get Brody to join them in the
shot. The whole town and the Armada fishermen all line up in
a classic “high school” graduating class shot with the
victorious fishermen kneeling in front, and the rest of the
Armada and Townspeople arranged behind them. Hendricks hold
up the “Beach Closed” sign in ironic victory.
ANGLE SHOWING VAUGHN APPROACHING THE DOCK
Brody spots the Mayor coming towards the dock, and detaches
himself from the group to join him.
Larry, if you’d see these clowns
leave, you’d never believe they’d
come back with anything. But they
That’s good. That’s real good. Ben
Meadows getting pictures for the
Sure he is.
HOOPER AND THE FISHERMEN
The men who landed the monster are in a tight cluster,
debating something with Hooper, who is dwarfed by the big
beer bellies and ham-fisted hands all around him. It’s
probable we don’t even see him.
The Men ad lib “What kind of shark is this?” “It’s a shark
like in the movies they got sharks.” “It’s a man-eater, for
sure.” “I bet it’s a record-breaker,” etc.
It’s a tiger shark. Very rare in
these waters, and definitely a
Hooper enters the circle, and picks up where he left off,
measuring the shark’s teeth. Others watch him. Charlie and
Denherder walk over to the shark. Charlie punches it.
BRODY AND VAUGHN
They are walking down to the shark together.
Who’s that young man?
Matt Hooper, the specialist they
send down from the Oceanographic
(speaking to everyone)
I think we all owe a debt of gratitude
to these men for catching this
Brody and Vaughn are by now near the circle of fishermen,
who are surrounding Hooper, raising their voices at him.
Whadya mean, ‘Bite Radius?’ What’s
Teeth are teeth, right?
I didn’t say this wasn’t the shark,
I just said I wasn’t sure this was
What d’ya mean?
There are hundreds of different kinds
of sharks; makos, blues, hammerheads,
white-tips… any one of them could’ve
attacked. Look — shark digestion is
slow. We could open this one up, and
find whatever he’s been eating is
That’s disgusting! This is the
largest, meanest, most vicious shark
ever landed off Amity Island, and a
Let’s just cut him open and see what’s
Why not, Larry? We could get a
positive confirmation that way.
Be reasonable, boys — this isn’t
the time or the place to do some
kind of half-assed autopsy on a fish.
do you have all the pictures you
Wait a minute…
Felix, Pratt and the others ad lib disagreement. “You’re not
gonna cut up my trophy,” etc.
offstage, with low
I am not going to stand here and
watch this fish cut open and see
some kid fall out on the dock.
(he indicates off)
We see Mrs. Kintner approaching, dressed in black.
Chief, I’ll take responsibility for
this. Boys, cut this ugly sonofabitch
down before he stinks up the whole
island. Harve, tomorrow you and Carl
take him out and dump him right in
MRS. KINTNER JOINS THE GROUP
She seeks out Brody, and stops in front of him.
He nods, she slaps him full across the face. There is an
embarrassed silence. Some people leave, following a trend
that began with the first mention of cutting open the shark.
My Alex was a beautiful little boy
and you killed him. Did you know
that? You knew there was a shark out
there. You knew a girl got killed
here last week. I just found that
out. But you knew. You knew it was
dangerous, but you let people go
swimming anyway. You knew all those
things, and still my boy is dead now
and there’s nothing you can do about
that. My boy is dead. I wanted you
to know that.
She stops, unable to continue. Her father takes her arm and
leads her away. Pratt, Harry and the others trail off after
her. During the rest of the scene, the camera tightens in on
Brody to the exclusion of the others.
I’m sorry, Martin. She’s in a sick,
Look, maybe this is the wrong time
to pursue this, but I’m not sure…
Before Hooper can finish, Brody’s shoulders slump and he
(almost to himself)
Let’s all get out of here, this place
I’m going home.
He turns and leaves abruptly, surrendering the dock to Vaughn
and Hooper, who eye each other with mutual dis-admiration.
INT. BRODY HOUSE – NIGHT – DINING ROOM
Brody and Ellen, Sean and Michael, have all finished dinner.
Brody’s plate is untouched, a virgin meatloaf. His glass, on
the other hand, is well used, with the remnants of a stiff
scotch and ice. He is staring across the table at the
youngest, Sean, who makes a face at him. He makes a face
They play this game together for a few minutes.
C’mere and give Daddy a kiss.
Because he needs it.
Sean gives Daddy the kiss. Brody shoos him and Michael off
to bed. Ellen, who is feeling progressively more left out
with each passing moment, gets up abruptly and clears a few
dishes. Brody is not letting her into his world for the
moment, and it shows. There’s a knock at the door.
Martin Brody residence?
Ellen opens the door for him.
Hi. I’m Matt Hooper. If your husband
is here, I’d like to talk to him.
So would I. Come on in.
Hooper enters. He’s carrying a couple of bottles of wine
which he picked up in town. He sits down near Brody.
Would you like something? Some coffee?
(seeing Brody’s plate)
Is anyone having this…?
He starts in on it, as soon as someone has indicated “go
How was your day…?
They exchange a long look that evolves into a slightly
desperate, but shared laughter.
Here… one red, one white.
They laugh some more. Ellen is again left out of it.
(boning his fish)
Ummm. Really good.
Brody begins stripping the foil off the wine, screwing in a
My husband tells me you’re in sharks.
I wouldn’t put it that way. But I
You love sharks?
(he tells a story
about his boyhood
and a shark)
But you’ve still got a problem here,
there’s a shark just off the island
How come you have to tell them that?
Excuse me, but what are you talking
about? Didn’t they catch the shark
this afternoon? It was on the Cape
They caught a shark, not the shark.
Big difference. I could’ve proved it
this afternoon, by cutting that one
open and examining his stomach
contents. Also, his bite was too
Brody has the cork out of the wine. Pop.
I was lucky to find that in town —
it’s an estate bottled vintage year…
Brody takes the fine wine, and pours it into his drink glass
filling the tumbler to the top with ice cubes, diluted scotch,
and the wine.
(as Brody pours)
We ought to let it breathe…
Let’s all have a drink.
He extends the bottle to Hooper, who politely accepts a token
sip. He takes some for himself, and offers some to Ellen.
You too, sweetheart…
Here’s to your husband, the only
other rational man on the island.
Day after tomorrow, I’ll be gone,
and he’ll be the only one.
Going out on the ‘Aurora.’
Is that a boat?
Is it! The best-funded research
expedition to ever study the shark…
around the world in 18 months.
Like those Cousteau specials on
television? I think it’s for the
kids, but I love them.
Better than Cousteau, or Compagno
with computers, telemetry, Defense
I saw a show with sea otters, and a
big turtle… Mikey loved it. Made
me promise to get him one. Will you
live on the boat?
Martin hates boats. Hates the water.
On the ferry to the mainland, he
sits in the car the whole way over.
He’s got this childhood thing, there’s
a clinical word for it.
Drowning. Lemme ask you something.
Is it true most attacks take place
in three feet of water, around 10
feet from the beach?
Yeah. Like the kid on your beach.
I wish I could’ve examined that shark
Something else. Do most attacks go
About half of them. A lot of ‘missing
swimmers’ are really shark victims.
There’s a kind of a lone shark,
Yeah. Rogue. Picks out an area where
there’s food and hangs out there as
long as the food supply lasts?
It’s called Territoriality. It’s a
And before 1900, when people first
starting swimming for recreation,
before public bathing and resorts,
there were very few shark attacks,
cause sharks didn’t know what they
You could say that.
Brody digests all this; confirmation of facts he has gleaned
in his newly acquired knowledge of the shark species.
There is a long pause.
Why don’t we have one more drink,
you and I, and then we go down and
cut open that old shark and see for
sure what’s inside him, or not.
Can you do that?
I am Chief of Police. I can do
anything I want.
You want to come?
I’m flattered you should ask.
He gets up and they both start out. Ellen watches them go.
INT. BOAT SHED – NIGHT
Dark, spooky shed, with shadows of boats and strange
silhouettes of boat parts and scaffolding. At one end, the
large, symmetrical bulk of the shark’s carcass lies on a
tarp. A single dark figure is bending over the dead shark.
The large double doors at one end of the shed squeak open,
and the Shadowy Figure moves abruptly away from the shark.
The new entrants move into the shed. It is Hooper and Brody
and they are continuing the conversation begun in the car on
the way over.
As the Shadowy Figure moves silently into a vantage point
against one wall, he passes through the light from a window;
it is Quint, and we only see him long enough to recognize
him as he backs against the wall.
…And it was Dartmouth Winter
weekend, and she was Homecoming Queen,
and I was her date; then she got
into the fact that her family had
more money than my family, and she
was right — her great-grandfather
was in mining, and my ancestors were
Yankee shipbuilders. So we broke up
and I went home with some beatnik
from Sarah Lawrence.
What stinks so bad?
Our friend, the shark.
They bend over the shape like 18th century graverobbers.
We always had a summer place on the
water — Newport, the Vineyard, so I
figured I’d major in something I
knew about. Oceanography, marine
biology. It was that, or design racing
yachts like my older brother. Hmmm.
He we go. Up the old alimentary canal.
Hold the light.
We hear a slurp and a squish as Hooper produces a big knife
and dips into the shark with a major incision.
We open the abdominal cavity and
check the digestive tract. Simple.
(he attends to his
From his vantage point, Quint watches, unseen by the two
Brody is holding the light, fighting the gag reflex,
fascinated by the bizarre ritual.
Half a flounder. Hmmm… a burlap
bag… a paint can… aha!
Just as I thought. He drifted up
here with the Gulf Stream, from
How can you tell?
Florida license plate.
He ate a car?
No, but Tiger sharks are the garbage
cans of the ocean. They eat anything.
But this one didn’t eat any people.
There’s nothing here…
He kicks the remains around below camera.
What do we do?
If you’re looking for a shark, you
don’t look on land. You go out and
chum for him.
Only one sure way to find him —
offer him a little something to eat.
Chum — blood, waste meat, fish,
anything. They can sense it miles
away. If he’s out there, we might be
able to get a closer look at him.
(checks his watch)
It’s a good time, too. They’re night
EXT. ABOARD HOOPER’S BOAT – NIGHT (TANK)
We see Brody, looking sick and nervous, holding on anxiously
as the “Fascinatin’ Rhythm” moves slowly ahead trolling at
night. His glasses are already flecked with the white salt
of dried seawater. He is wearing a life-preserver.
Hooper is at the wheel, a chart spread in front of him, his
eyes scanning the sea restlessly, checking the dials and
gauges in front of him as well as the electronic depth-finding
and “fish-finder” gear mounted in the cockpit. A green glow
shines from the instruments on his face. Two closed-circuit
TV cameras mounted below the hull flash their pictures onto
monitors in the dash.
In the aisle between the seats is a large container filled
with unpleasant-looking bait; Hooper is long-lining for signs
of shark, and chumming.
That’s the Cape Light — we’re on
the stretch where he’s feeding, if
he’s still here.
Brody, bored, tired, and slightly queasy, is trying to
concentrate on anything but the motion of the boat. He stares
at the sophisticated electronics displays.
What is all this stuff?
(ticking them off)
Depth-finder, fathometer, sonar,
closed-circuit TV — fore and aft —
RDF, single side band…
(points to themselves)
And two loose nuts behind the wheel.
Can you tell from that if a big man-
eater is around?
Look here — something big, probably
a school of mackerel clumped together.
And staying right with us.
INSERT – ELECTRONICS SCREEN
It’s blipping and peeping.
CLOSE ON THE TWO MEN
Where’d you get all this?
I Bought it. Both sets of
grandparents set up trust funds for
me; stocks went up, so I don’t have
to touch my principal.
You’re at the Institute full time?
Or do you have a job?
(a nerve has been
It is a job. I’m not fooling around
like some amateur. It’s my life!
We gotta get back soon…
WIDE ON THE “FASCINATIN’ RHYTHM” AS IT SWINGS AROUND
The two men looking very small and vulnerable in the open
sea, the low-hanging mist obscuring their visibility in the
CLOSE ON BRODY
He hears something, his eyes widen. It is the “bump-thump”
of something scraping the hull.
Hooper looks up and cuts the wheel hard, as the same time
dropping the engines into neutral, and then reverse. The
sudden change throws Brody to his knees.
What the hell?
ANGLE FROM HOOPER’S BOAT: GARDNER’S BOAT “FLICKA” AWASH AND
FLOATING DEAD IN THE SEA
It’s what they’ve just run into — flooded to the gunwales,
loose debris floating around, a tangle of lines and gear
looking like floating garbage in the cockpit. Hooper’s light
sweeps across it.
That’s Ben Gardner’s boat! It’s the
Flicka! Ben? Ben!
Hooper cuts his engines and drifts in; he scampers out to
the bow of his boat and makes a line fast to the Flicka.
INSIDE THE COCKPIT OF HOOPER’S BOAT
The electronic display is showing increased activity, but
only Brody, who is clinging to a support for dear life, can
see the blips and hear the chatter. Hooper is leaning out to
look at the Flicka.
THE TWO BOATS
Hooper is examining the Flicka, tying a towline to it.
INSERT HIS POINT OF VIEW
The light picks its way across the ruined boat. The rail
where a cleat once was is broadly scarred down to the raw
timber, and the heady cleat has been torn bodily out of the
hull, ripped out screws and all.
Something he has seen moves Hooper.
I want to check something. Hold my
He sticks his head over the side, into the black water.
Don’t they have lifejackets or
something? An extra boat?
They must’ve hit something.
INSERT, ELECTRONICS DISPLAY
Blip, chatter, blip, chatter.
BRODY AND HOOPER
Hooper moves to get a better look, the boat rocks in the
swell and from his movement, Brody clutches the rail in a
Hooper goes below decks, getting into his wet suit, buckling
on a weighted belt, holding a mask and hot flashlight.
He didn’t have a dinghy aboard. I’m
going down to take a look at his
Why don’t we just tow it in?
We will. There’s something I’ve got
to find out.
Be careful, for chrissake.
Hooper takes a last few breaths, orients himself, takes a
long, hard look at the quiet, open ocean, and falls into the
CLOSE ON BRODY
He is studying the surface, trying to follow Hooper’s
movements. Brody is forcing himself to stay at the edge of
the boat by sheer willpower and grim determination. Brody is
fascinated by the sea like a bird facing a cobra. He is very
much alone. He grasps a flashlight or boathook as a fragile
defense against the unknown.
PAST BRODY’S BACK TO THE ELECTRONICS
Beep, chatter, blip.
UNDERWATER SEQUENCE – HOOPER
Hooper descends in a froth of bubbles. Warily he turns a
full circle with his hotlight. At first we see nothing out
of place about the Flicka except that it is lying so low in
the water. But as Hooper travels the bottom looking for
damage, he comes across a jagged hole two-thirds of the way
The hole is about the size of a basketball, and the wood
around it has been bashed and splintered. Hooper explores
the hole with his hands, then takes the knife from its sheath
and begins to dig at something. Whatever it is comes free in
his hand. As he studies his find, his light wanders upward,
pointing directly into the dark hole. Hooper looks up…
CLOSE – HOLE
Ben Gardner’s dead face stares out through the hole in the
Flicka, eyes and mouth gaping in frozen horror, his skin
pinched like a prune.
CLOSE – HOOPER
bumps his head in trying to get away, seems to yell through
escaping bubbles. We hear the gasping shout as a bubbling
roar in the ears. His mask fills with water as he flails for
the surface. Miscalculating, he bumps into the hull of his
own boat, shocked, dismayed, his system jangling with
adrenaline shock, his hands open, and the object he pried
loose from the hull drifts down and out, falling into the
eternity of the ocean bottom. He finally bursts through the
END OF UNDERWATER SEQUENCE
THE BOAT, HOOPER EMERGING FROM THE WATER
He is gasping for breath, his whole body vibrating with
urgency. The salt water in his lungs combines with the
adrenaline in his blood to deprive him of speech.
You all right?
A White! A Great White, I found a
tooth buried in the hull. He must’ve
attacked… I knew it… Gardner’s
dead in there. I didn’t see the
No shark did that to a boat!
Hooper, despite his shock and surprise, is strangely elated,
almost giddy with the wonder of his discovery.
Jesus Christ! A Great White! Who’d
believe it! We’re not talking about
a shark, we’re talking about a Shark!
Brody sinks weakly into a chair. Brody huddles in the stern,
Hooper kicks the engine in with a roar, and still a-shiver
with excitement, turns the boat and its grim tow back to
EXT. ISLAND HIGHWAY – THE BILLBOARD – DAY
Next to the “Amity Welcomes You” billboard is a group of
selectmen, Vaughn, Meadows, Hendricks, and another deputy
standing by with paint and brushes. Brody’s wagon is there,
along with a few other cars. Busy late afternoon traffic is
starting to pile up as early weekenders and curiosity seekers
slow down to see what’s happening.
Behind the billboard, Brody and Hooper have gotten Vaughn to
one side. They are making a closely reasoned presentation to
There is a kind of shark called a
Great White Shark that every expert
in the world agrees is a maneater.
You’re situation here suggests that
a Great White has staked out a claim
in the waters around Amity Island,
and that he will continue to feed
here as long as there is food in the
There’s no limits to where he can
strike, and we’ve had three attacks
and two deaths in the past few days.
It happened like this before, in
1916, when a Great White killed five
swimmers at Jones Beach, in Long
A shark’s attack is stimulated by
the kind of splashing and activity
that occurs whenever humans go
swimming — you can’t avoid it!
A 4th of July beach is like ringing
a dinner bell, for Chrissake!
I just pulled a shark tooth the size
of a shot glass out of the hull of a
wrecked boat out there.
We towed Ben Gardner’s boat in, Larry;
he was dead and his boat was all
Is that tooth here? Did anyone see
I don’t have it.
He lost it on the way up.
What kind of a shark did you say it
Carcaradon carcharias. A Great White.
Well, I’m not going to commit economic
suicide on that flimsy evidence. We
depend on the summer people for our
lives, and if our beaches are closed,
then we’re all finished.
We have got to close the beaches. We
have got to get someone to kill the
shark, we need non-corrosive mesh
netting, we need scientific support…
It’s gonna cost money just to keep
the nuts out and save what we have.
I don’t thing either of you is
familiar with our problems…
I’m familiar with the fact that you
are going to ignore this thing until
it swims up and bites you on the
ass! There are only two ways to solve
this thing: you can kill it, or you
can cut off its food supply…
That means closing the beaches.
Come here, I want to show you
He leads Brody around to the front of the billboard, on which
we see that some pranksters have painted a huge shark fin in
the water behind the swimmer, so she looks now like a frantic
bather fleeing a pursuing monster.
Sick vandalism! Brody, that’s a
deliberate mutilation of a public
service message! I want those little
paint-happy bastards caught and hung
up by their baby Buster Browns!
(who has followed
That’s it! I’m standing here arguing
with a guy who can’t wait to be a
hot lunch. Goodbye.
Wait a minute! I need you.
Out there is a Perfect Engine, an
Eating Machine that is a miracle of
evolution — it swims and eats and
that’s all. Look at that! Those
proportions are correct.
I know sharks.
You’d love to prove that. Getting
your name in the National Geographic.
Larry, we can re-open the beaches in
August! Tomorrow is the 4th of July,
and we are going to open for business.
It’s going to be our best summer in
years. If you’re so concerned about
the beaches, you two, you do whatever
you have to to keep them safe, but
with you or without you, the beaches
stay open this weekend.
INT. FERRY BOAT – DAY
Two cavernous iron doors. Then a crack of vertical light as
six burly crewmen muscle them apart. The Amity ferry landing
is approaching, people in colorful outfits waiting dockside
for the first filled-to-capacity shuttle of the summer season
Bach’s Little Fugue is the musical accompaniment to this
wholly visual montage of disembarkation. The next two minutes
should be treated like a “short film” taking into account
all of the colors, episodes, faces and behavior of a variety
of Americans who colonize Eastern resort communities for the
Intercut with this montage is Brody’s home, where Ellen,
Hooper and Brody are in sweaty, gritty all-out effort to
enlist some support. Elements in this montage include:
- A train of cars trundling down the ramp, bumper to bumper.
- Young Beautiful People from Princeton, Yale, NYU, wearing
knapsacks, toting luggage, babies riding in papoose rigs,
energized children, senior citizens holding hands on the
pedestrian ramp, a few wheelchairs.
- Hooper, bent over the phone: “I know it’s a long weekend,
could you get me his home phone number?
- Sidewalk vendors hawking “Shark Killed” souvenirs, big
photo “Personality Posters” of the dead tiger shark hung on
- Brody: “You’re acting senior officer? Where’s Chief Petty
Officer Feldman? Where’s the Coast Guard Executive Officer?”
- Souvenir stands selling Genuine Sharks Teeth from The
Amity Killer Shark, Captured This Week.
- Amity Cab Company, small blue Toyotas lined up with their
college student drivers like a bomber wing.
- Hooper: “Well then, operator, could you try him in the
- Brody: “All I get is a recording. Is there some other
number I could try…?”
- Station wagons with pale winter faces pressed anxiously
to the window. Cadillacs with Rear Admirals at the helm,
their wives with blue hair remembering the way from years
- Hooper: “When did he check out? Did he leave another
- Brody: “How can I reach him in Chambers if he’s not in
- Little Karate Hands breaking picket fences.
- Some local delinquents about 10 or 12 years old, towing
behind their bicycles a little dead sand shark with signs:
“Amity Monster Shark.” “Killed Here.” 5 Cents a Hit.” Etc.
Then six blonde and tanned Coney Island meatballs descend
the ramp. They all wear Men’s Club Lifeguard patches and
matching collegiate windbreakers. They scour the landing,
looking for someone to save.
The boat is empty. Everybody heading inland, anticipating
the best Fourth of July ever. Already there is debris on the
docks and the cleaning crew works away at it.
INSIDE THE FERRY
As Bach’s Little Fugue ends, the six burly crewmen lean their
combined weight against the Cathedral doors, closing out the
light and locking in the trade. The doors latch shut with a
ANGLE ON BRODY, NERVOUSLY WATCHING THE BEACH
He is studying everything, trying to make sure he has it
covered as well as possible. He almost doesn’t hear the
approaching roar of a small helicopter until it settles down
behind him, and a Flying Officer gets out, starched, pressed
fatigues, a flawless fatigue baseball cap, and slick dark
aviator’s sunglasses. The Steve Canyon of Amity. He presents
Brody with a clipboard.
I’ll need your signature here…
here… and here.
What is this?
Authorization for direct payment of
flight expenses not directly connected
to a normal mission of this command.
You pay for the gas.
Brody signs. The Officer shakes his head as Brody makes an
I signed on the wrong line…
Just erase your signature and initial
Brody complies, shaking his head. The Officer snaps him a
salute, jogs lightly back to his idling copter, buckles in,
and gives Brody a “thumbs up” as he lifts off in a flurry of
sand and ice-cream wrappers.
EXT. BEACH PARKING LOT – EARLY MORNING
And this is it — the Dawn Patrol, the only forces that the
frantic phone calling produced. Hendricks, and the regular
summer extra deputies. The lifeguards. Half a dozen state
troopers. Some deputies from neighboring towns, and a Coast
Guard ensign with a handful of regulars in work dungarees.
Some of Hooper’s friends from the institute.
Brody and Hooper, badly in need of sleep, are watching the
crew straggle in. Already the first of the holiday beach-
goers are piling out of their cars in a brightly colored
cascade of beach balls, umbrellas, blankets, portable bar-b-
ques, radios, sun visors, reflectors, rafts, balls, tubes,
Hooper watches one such group: A Family of Ten getting out
of a camper-van. He watches in dismay as the family bumbles
onto the beach for a day of fun in the sun.
Brody addresses his troops, such as they are.
I want to thank you guys from local
agencies for cooperating, and I hope
we won’t actually be needing your
services. But I’m glad to have you
The Men ad lib responses: “Happy to do it,” “Any time,”
“When’s lunch?” “I hate holidays,” etc.
I want to get our lines and repellent
out, so we better shove off.
He nods to his men, who head for some Boston Whalers (or
similar boat with surf-riding capability) and push off into
the surf to patrol the swimming areas.
(a last caution)
We’re all on one channel, so let’s
keep radio traffic to a minimum,
Everyone kind of nods acknowledgment.
I hope we get some more help.
I wish it would rain…
EXT. BEACH – AMUSEMENT AREA – CLOSE OF SHARK MACHINE
In a shed near the bandstand, a half-dozen pinball and arcade
machines sucking quarters from holiday beach-goers. A
mechanical shark traverses the screen, is hit with an electric
harpoon and red “blood” blossoms from its side, indicating a
Sounds of electronic gadgetry, people having fun. Meadows is
there writing it all up for the paper. A move away from the
screen of this particular machine reveals the arcade, the
parking lot, and, finally, the beginnings of the panorama of
the beach that July 4th has created.
EXT. SOUTH BEACH – THE FOURTH OF JULY
four foot surfer’s swell curls and crashes on shore,
riderless. The broad sandy beach is a mosaic of summer color
as one thousand vacationers practice fun in the sun, but not
in the water. Hot dog stands and ice cream vendors are
ANGLE – LIFEGUARD STATIONS
A half-dozen lookout lofts. As many handsome lifeguards with
Walkie-Talkies strapped to their trunks and loud-hailers at
arm’s reach. Bored, two of the hot dogs train their binoculars
on some local color.
ANGLE ON TV MOBILE UNIT
A TV Mobile Unit Van is setting up: cables snaking to cameras,
a camera with a big sports zoom sitting on the platform atop
the truck, a spiffy announcer-type in a blazer with his
station’s call letters on the pocket. Inside the darkened
control room, we can see the pale blue squares of monitors
in a mosaic against one wall, facing the switcher.
Hooper is methodically patrolling in his boat. Tactically
flanking a three-hundred-yard apron of black repellent are
four small watch-boats. A tiny pleasure boat darts around
the repellent line. Farther out, crossing back and forth,
are patrol boats. To top it all off, a Coast Guard helicopter
hovers and patrols three hundred feet above.
INT. TELEVISION MOBILE UNIT
At least eight monitors, reflecting the outputs of three
cameras and two tape machines, as well as line, preview, and
MONITOR: CAMERA 1: Holding on a group of happy citizen-bathers
as they unpack their gear, wave to camera, run into the water.
MONITOR: CAMERA 2: The Repellent Line, set in place by Coast
Guardsmen in small boats, setting out floats, dumping
repellent into the ocean.
MONITOR: CAMERA 3: Close on the Bandstand, where Amity’s
band is playing lilting patriotic airs.
After we’ve seen this activity, we can take a look at what’s
going on: the preparation of the tape segment for the six
Put 1 on the line. In five. 4. 3. 2.
On the “Tape 1” and “Line” monitors, we see Vaughn being
interviewed by the Announcer in the blazer.
…and with me is the Mayor of Amity,
Lawrence Vaughn. Mr. Vaughn, how
about those rumors?
How about them indeed. I’m pleased
and happy to repeat the news that we
have, in fact, caught and killed a
large predator that supposedly injured
some bathers here. As you can see,
it’s a beautiful day, the beaches
are open, and the folks here are
having a wonderful time. Amity,
y’know, means ‘Friendship.’
MONITOR: CAMERA 1: As Vaughn speaks to us on the monitors,
the monitor for Camera 1 pans over to show a Sightseeing Bus
pull up in the parking area, and a horde of media vultures
spilling out, carrying cameras with long lenses and tripods,
telescopes, sunshades and parasols, all the equipment of the
curious and none of the equipment of the holiday bather or
TAPE 1 AND LINE MONITORS: Close on the Announcer, Vaughn out
of the picture.
Also here today is a Marine Biologist
and Research Fellow from the
Oceanographic Institute, Matthew
Hooper. Mr. Hooper, what’ve you heard?
What I’ve heard and what I’ve seen
are two different things. I believe
there is a large Great White Shark —
Carcharodon Cacharias – in the waters
off this very beach, that he has
killed and that he will kill again…
Hooper’s voice fades off as someone at the mixer panel dials
his mike off, and brings up the Announcer’s lavalier.
(moving into centre
And there you have it — two different
opinions, by men of good will. The
holiday crowd here at Amity seems to
be making up its own mind…
The camera pans off him to a happy family headed for the
MONITOR: CAMERA 3: Zooms in on the puffing face of the tuba
MONITOR: CAMERA 2: Brody and the Announcer.
MONITOR: TAPE 1 and LINE: Back on the Announcer, his lips
moving, but his sound turned off. We hear, instead, the sound
from Monitor Camera 2, Brody and the same Announcer.
I’m sorry, I just don’t have the
Recue the machines. 2, pan off the
Chief and show me some tits and ass.
1, get me some cute kids. 3… see
if you got a shot at the water.
MONITORS: CAMERAS 1, 2 and 3: The cameras seek out the
appropriate activity as the Director calls for it.
(holds up stopwatch)
Mayor, 43 seconds, Biologist 45
seconds. That’s equal time, right?
(he presses “Talkback”
button to his
Jerry, come on in and look at this.
(to his headset)
Roll 2. In five, 4. 3. 2. 1.
TAPE 2 – MONITOR:
Starts showing us the assembled interview segment we’ve just
seen, starting with the Announcer’s opening remarks.
ANNOUNCER (V.O. MONITOR)
Amity Island is famed for its clear
air and white sand beaches. But a
His voice is dialed under as the Announcer himself appears
in the control room to watch himself on the monitors.
Look at that shine on my nose. It’s
Close enough for remote.
As Vaughn begins his spiel again, the other monitors show us
the action on the beach.
…I’m pleased and happy…
Think we ought to stick around?
What else you got?
Teachers’ strike downtown.
CAMERAMAN’S VOICE (O.S.)
Christenson, this is Al. Union says
time for Engineering Five.
That’s five minutes, guys. Coffee.
ANGLE ON THE BEACH
Vaughn is in his shirtsleeves, having slipped out of his
He mops his brow, and surveys the beachfront. At this moment,
there’s nobody swimming. He approaches a familiar Selectman,
nods hello, and squats beside him on the sand.
Why don’t you get in the water?
I don’t want to wash off my suntan
lotion. I’ll get a burn…
Nobody’s going in!
On an adjoining blanket, a spirited Ruth Gordon type is
sitting, watching brightly as her manservant, a polished
Eric Harrison type, prepares some tea from a thermos.
Is there nobody going in? What a
shame. Arthur, should I be going in?
ARTHUR (THE BUTLER)
If you’d like.
He puts down the tea service, and leads her towards the water.
At the edge of the sea, she stops, and he walks in.
(as he enters the
It’s very nice. Not too cold… Quite
refreshing… Very pleasant….
He ducks his head under for a final look around. His dripping
head rises triumphantly from the surf.
No sharks, m’lady.
She starts into the water, he takes her parasol, escorting
her the rest of the way into the ocean.
This is marvelous! Arthur, I want to
come back to this very spot. Will
you make a note of where we are?
WIDE – ON THE BEACH
Encouraged by the sight of the Woman and Arthur, and Vaughn’s
quiet urgings, people begin to wander into the surf, a few
at first, and then a rush, as people plunge in and begin
enjoying the pleasures of ocean bathing. The Selectman goes
in, his family follows, Vaughn watches it all, beaming.
Hendricks is on the radio while a Coast Guard spotter works
Anything? Thought I saw a shadow.
Pan to the water.
As before, 400 pairs of enticing, yummy swimmers’ legs,
kicking like animated hors d’oeuvres.
INT. HELICOPTER – AERIAL VIEW
A breathtaking view. The copter spotter looks down with naked
eye and binoculars.
Nothing from up here, Daisy. Over.
CLOSE – HENDRICKS
False alarm. Must be this glare.
ANGLE – BEACH – CLOSE ON BRODY
He is walking down the beach, threading his way through the
happy hordes. Meadows nods “hello.”
Who’s scared to go in! I was in! Up
to your knees, yeah — So come with
me — I’ll go again.
Beautiful day, Chief!
A group of youngsters playing with Michael Brody’s dinghy.
They are hauling it toward the surf.
Hey Mikey — !
Michael turns as Brody trots toward him.
You’re not going to the ocean with
that, are you son?
I’m all checked out for light surf
and look at it.
Do me this favour just once. Use the
Dad, the ponds are for old ladies.
Just a favour for your old man.
TV CREW – NEAR WATER
TV cameramen are packing up their gear. For them it’s a wrap
REPELLENT LINE – COUNTY POLICEMAN
Suddenly his Walkie-Talkie fizzes, and the Copter Spotter’s
voice overloads the speaker.
Copter to Daisy! Red Four, Red Four!
BOAT #7 – HENDRICKS
Guns are up, heads turning everywhere.
Where — ?
Went under your — There!
The Coast Guard sonar operator spots it and pales. A slick
black dorsal fin is slicing a wake toward the swimming area.
Jesus Christ — Shark!
BEACH – BRODY
Rigid and choked, he almost breaks the “send” button trying
Everybody out! Out of the water,
please — leave the water, please —
A lifeguard in a loft behind him begins blowing on his
CLOSE – BRODY
No whistles! No whistles!
Dozens of bathers halfway out of the water, turn to see.
More whistles, and they start toward shore. We hear panicky
voices ad-libbing; “Shark,” “Look Out,” etc. The loudhailers
sounding more urgent now, and a contagious dread seizes one
person after another. Entire groups of people begin pulling
toward shore, some of them obviously trying to control a
growing hysteria in others.
BOATS #6 AND #7
are converging, heading toward the repellent line as if
tracking an underwater shadow. The fin is beyond the repellent
cordons and heading into the crowds.
Caught on the other end of the line, he is wheeling in a
broad, hot-dogger’s circle turn, headed back.
THE WATER – BATHERS
People begin screaming. Kids are suddenly separated from
their parents. Others seem to forget how to swim. One myopic
little girl has her glasses bumped off and she begins to cry
in blinded panic. Ellen Brody looks around frantic.
BOATS #2, #3, #4
The riflemen in the boats are trying to get a bead, but too
many civilians create a hazard. The Coast Guardsmen attempt
to sever the repellent cord to gain access to the bathing
area and the heaving fin.
THE WATER – BATHERS
This is a confirmation of our worst dread — a full-blown
headlong water panic. Screaming vacationers claw their way
over the bodies of the less able. Some literally attempt to
walk over the bobbing heads and glistening backs of others
pulling for dry land.
CLOSEUPS – PANIC
Horrified faces. Some are stunned and wandering in slow,
tentative circles, while others are helped out by friends.
Five people try to mount a rubber raft.
Ugly reminders that each of us is Number One.
Brody enters shot, yelling into his walkie-talkie, someone
charges past him to help an old man out of the water.
EXT. THE BEACH
Dragging the helpless from the surf. Tears well in Brody’s
eyes. The screaming is deafening. The TV unit is hopping up
and down in rage and frustration.
Why did we wrap? Get that! Somebody
One thousand survivors pack the beach, standing absolutely
still. A numbing cold sets in, and people shiver against
Muted sobs, whimpering, coughing.
The six burly lifeguards huddle together like Cub Scouts.
ANGLE – BATHING AREA
The monstrous black fin turns a slow circle as two Coast
Guardsmen manage to cut their own repellent line. All boats
converge on the dynamic fin. Men raise their guns to fire.
Others adlib nautical commands in a uniquely calculated
CLOSE – FIN
It slips sideways, revealing for the first time a tiny blue
snorkel. Then appears the faces of two youngsters whom we
will recall from the coven behind the dune. The fin bobs
back, a beaverboard replica attached to a partially submerged
surfboard. One youngster looks up and is greeted by:
YOUNGSTER’S POINT OF VIEW
Twenty rifles and shotguns pointed directly at him.
Surrounding him on three sides. Some of the policemen start
to lower their guns — struck dumb.
HOOPER IN HIS BOAT
He throttles back suddenly, subsiding into his own wake, his
eyes still restlessly searching.
CLOSE – YOUNGSTER
his only defense, he begins to cry — and feebly raises his
hands in unconditional surrender.
ANGLE – ESTUARY
The narrow estuary leading into the half-mile is rough today.
Two children digging in the sand and unaware of the beach
panic one hundred yards away look up, and the little girl
BLACK DORSAL FIN
is cruising through the narrows and toward the busy pond.
HOOPER IN HIS BOAT AGAIN
He sees it, and jams his throttle forward. He steers with
one hand, fumbling urgently for his walkie-talkie with the
The circle of boats around the little pranksters, the crowds
huddled on the beach, Hooper’s boat suddenly arrowing towards
the estuary, leaving a huge boiling wake.
CLOSE ON VAUGHN
He catches Hooper’s boat out of the corner of his eye.
Curious, he follows its progress. It’s urgency finally
communicates itself to Vaughn, who begins a shambling trot
across the dunes towards a rise overlooking the estuary.
OVERLOOKING THE ESTUARY
Vaughn gets there just in time to see the disaster. He
watches, helpless, trying to shout, out of breath. Stunned.
ANGLE – POND
Michael is tacking full-sail in his boat with a friend, Kit.
Kit is admiring the shark’s tooth necklace around his own
neck while Michael rubs some water on the scratches left by
The fin, huge, black and real, crosses behind them. They are
not yet aware. The fin seems to circle and return. It heads
toward Michael’s boat when another small dinghy gets in its
way — a weekend novice just finishing a thermos of coffee
when he is “bumped.” The entire boat is overturned. Michael
sees the fin now as it collides with him, the entire bow
lifting out of the water and rolling over on the port side.
Michael and Kit are thrown head first.
Three heads in the water come up sputtering, the fin between
them crossing back. Michael freezes. The fin comes directly
at him, growing into the sky, passing him so close he could
touch it, but ignoring him as it follows the flailing and
panicked weekend novice. Catches him. Michael watches. That
all too familiar explosion of water — a choked off scream —
the head and upper torso of the novice passing Michael swiftly
as though being carried off — a current of blood trailing
(passing a horrified
Michael, who half
extends one hand, as
if to help)
It’s no good. I’m dead…
(and he is)
A renewed cry of shark!
CLOSE – BRODY
He turns. Oh God! Running through the slogging sand.
CLOSE – ELLEN
A sudden turn. She runs.
CLOSE – HOOPER IN BOAT
He’s got the walkie-talkie to his mouth.
Block the estuary! The estuary!
Three boats racing to carry out the orders. The black fin re-
passing the two children, racing to get out. Hooper reaches
the mouth before the others. The fin won’t veer off. It smacks
into the little vessel, bumping it aside. The fin is left
racing into open water. Blood leavings. Hooper leaping over
the side, slogging towards Michael.
WIDE ON WATER
Copter roars in buzzing the shark, but too late.
CLOSE – BRODY AND ELLEN
They are pulling Michael out of the water as Hooper splashes
- Michael is conscious but in shock — his eyes staring at
(feeling his face)
He’s in shock. Get blankets!
People gather and Brody snatches beach towels out of their
hands. They cover Michael and carry him off the beach, feet
raised above his head.
INT. HOSPITAL – DAY
Michael is wheeled out in the bed. Brody and Ellen are there.
Sean is sleepy in Brody’s arms. Vaughn is waiting in the
The doctor said it’s okay — mild
shock. He can come home in the
Hey, big guy — you want anything
My cars. And a comic book.
(gives baby to Ellen)
Take him home.
Home… New York?
No. Home here.
(crossing to Vaughn)
Got a pen on you?
There’s only one thing you’re good
for anymore — signing a damn voucher.
Here. It’s an authorization to employ
I don’t know if I can do that without
I’m going to hire Quint to kill the
fish. I want to see that shark dead.
Maybe we can save August…
Forget it. This summer’s had it.
Next summer’s had it. You’re the
mayor of Shark City. You wanted to
keep the beaches open. What happens
when the town finds out about that?
I was acting in the town’s best
The best interest in this town would
be to see that fish belly-up in the
water with a hole in his head. You
do the right thing. You authorize
Right there. Whatever it costs.
My kids were on that beach…
Just sign it, Larry.
Vaughn signs, and Brody takes the paper and exits.
QUINT’S HOUSE – DAY
Brody and Hooper are approaching Quint’s house. They enter
through the big wooden doors, into another circle of Hell.
Smoke and steam from two big oil drums sitting over fires
fills the air. Quint and his mate, Herschel, are grinding
pieces of pilot whale into chum. The whale lies bloody on
the floor, its ruined carcass adding to the stench of other
sharks being boiled in the drums, their tails suspended in
Diesel fumes and decay fill the air, and tools, ropes, broken
bits of iron and engine parts litter the floor. Wall hangings
of rope and floats, and buoys, barrels, tackle and gear all
conspire to frame the killing floor.
Brody and Hooper navigate the obstacle course.
This has got to be one big
(handling some gear)
This is quite a place.
Keep your hands off my stuff.
He emerges from the steam and smoke.
Did you bring a check?
Cash? Or do we do this on a handshake
and a promise?
I’m authorized by the township of
Amity to hire you as an independent
contractor. We’ll meet your price.
And my regular daily rate — $200,
whether we catch him or not.
You got it.
And incidental damages, if any…
You got it.
And you get the Mayor off my back
with this zoning crap. Nobody tells
me how to run my property.
You got it.
And, uh, a case of apricot brandy
and you buy the lunch.
Two cases. And dinner when you land.
Try some of this. I made it myself.
Here’s to swimmin’ with bowlegged
Herschel interrupts. He’s stopped working, and is wiping his
hands on a bloody rag.
Quint wheels to face him.
I’m not goin’. No sir.
You want to get paid, you go.
Forget the money. You can’t pay me
enough. I ain’t crazy. I worked some
big mean fish with you, but I ain’t
goin’ on this one.
This is the last time I hear from
you. I don’t want anyone with piss
for blood on my vessel. Put that
blackfish on board, pump the bilges,
and top off the fuel tanks, and finish
up in the morning. Then you’re on
You’re going to need an extra hand…
Quint turns to see this new voice, and starts walking towards
This is Matt Hooper…
I know who he is…
He’s from the Oceanographic Institute.
I’ve been to sea since I was 12.
I’ve crewed three Trans-pacs —
— and an America’s Cup Trials…
I’m not talking about day sailing or
pleasure boating. I’m talking about
working for a living. Sharking.
And I’m not talking about hooking
some poor dogfish or sand shark. I’m
talking about a Great White.
Are you now. I know about porkers in
the water —
(throws him some rope)
Here. Tie me a sheepshank.
Hooper ties the knot effortlessly.
I don’t need to pass basic seamanship.
Let me see your hands…
He takes Hooper’s hands in his own big bloody fists, and
feels them as he talks.
Ha. City hands. You been counting
money. If you had a $5000 net and
$2000 worth of fish in it, and along
comes Mr. White, and makes it look
like a kiddy scissors class has gone
to work on it and made paper dolls.
If you’d ever worked for a living,
you’d know what that means.
Look, I don’t need to hear any of
this working class hero crap. Some
party boat skipper who’s killed a
Hey. Knock it off. I don’t want to
have to listen to this while we’re
What do you mean ‘We…?’
It’s my charter. My party.
All right, Commissioner. But when
we’re on my ship, I am Master, Mate
and Pilot. And I want him…
…along for ballast.
You got it.
EXT. QUINT’S DOCK – MORNING
The Mate is loading. He hands Quint the items on his check
list as Quint takes them aboard.
5 lengths of 1/2-inch, 20 number
14’s, straight gaff, flying gaffs,
tail rope, eye splice, M-1, 20 clips,
As he talks, we see Hooper coming down to the dock. Wheeling
a wagon behind him are two long-haired Research Assistants
from the Institute. On the wagon, among other things, is a
big shark cage. At dockside, Hooper checks his list, as he
signs for his issue.
Powerhead, CO2 darts, hypo, regulator,
tanks, depth gauge, camera, extra
CLOSE – ON HOOPER AND RESEARCH ASSISTANT
You got everything you asked for?
All of it. And thank Dr. Miro for
- And tell Borack I’ll catch up
with them in New Zealand.
This is actually a killing expedition?
An eye for an eye, you know.
Hey, Squirt! You want to stow this
gear or you want me to use it for
ballast? It ain’t good for much but
I’ll see ya. Tell Dorothy hello.
Hooper sees his gear approaching.
ANGLE ON DOCK AND ORCA
Quint sees Hooper approaching with the large cage.
Hello, Junior. What are you? Some
kind of half-assed astronaut?
Jesus Christ, when I was a kid, every
little squirt wanted to be a harpooner
or a sword fisherman. What d’ya have
there — a portable shower?
Who’s inside, you or the shark?
Hooper indicates “me.”
You’re in the cage?
The cage is in the water?
The shark is in the water too?
You’re in the water with the shark.
Hooper nods. Quint sings “Spanish Ladies” half to himself.
ANGLE ON DOCK, BRODY AND ELLEN APPROACHING
She’s carrying a little plastic shopping bag, he’s wearing
shiny new foul weather gear, bundled up, sweaty,
She gives him as good a hug as she can manage under the
Did you take your dramamine?
She straightens his coat, and gives him a shaving kit to
carry aboard with his toiletries. From the deck, Quint
Hurry up, Chief, daylight’s a wastin’.
Is that him?
Colorful, isn’t he?
You going to be all right?
Nothing to worry about — I’ll survive
I’ll see you back soon. There’s an
extra pair of glasses in your black
socks, and there’s some suntan lotion
and blistex in your kit.
Brody nods, and holds her hand for a wordless moment.
‘Here is the body of Mary Lee. For
15 years she kept her virginity. Not
a bad record for this vicinity.’
There is a sputter and roar as the Orca’s diesels kick on.
Yo-ho-ho and a bottle of rum.
What’ll I tell the kids?
Tell ’em I went fishin’!
They laugh together, and exchange a short, fierce kiss.
Cast off the bow line! Now your stern!
Its diesels chugging, the Orca pulls away from the pier.
Ellen has already resolutely turned her back on it, and is
walking off the dock back onto dry land.
ABOARD THE ORCA
Quint has set a course out towards the open sea. He lashes
the wheel, and jumps down to address Hooper and Brody, who
are standing together in the stern.
Front-Bow, Back-Stern, Port,
Starboard. Aloft, Below. It’s not a
staircase, it’s a ladder, it’s not a
rope, it’s a line, and if you don’t
get it right…
I’ll throw your ass through that
little round window.
He laughs at his joke. This is probably something he tells
all his charters.
Now hear this. You’re aboard the
fishing vessel ‘Orca,’ and I’m her
Captain, Master, Mate, and Owner.
You’ll jump when I holler. We’re
doin’ a job here, and Christ, I ain’t
got time to watch you birds get hooks
in your ass and fall overboard. Ship
with me, and you’ll do all right.
Cross me, and I’ll slap you upside
your heads. Now — if you boys are
ready — let’s go fishin’.
He starts moving gear around, preparing chum barrels, setting
hooks, Hooper gives him a hand, Brody stays out of the way.
EXT. THE OCEAN – NOON
It is quiet as the Orca drifts along in the current, a wide
chum slick spreading behind it. A couple of flag buoys spread
along our perspective show us the miles the boat has gone.
Quint spots something in the water — a small blue shark
attracted by the chum. He rigs a small pole with a piece of
bait, and throws it over the side.
Here’s something for you…
The shark takes the bait, Quint brutally and efficiently
sets the hook, and reels the shark alongside. He hauls it
part way out of the water, and sticks it with a gaff. Hooper
and Brody watch.
INSERT – SHARK WRIGGLING ON HOOK
Tailrope dropping on him. Gaffed and bleeding, the shark is
immobilized by Quint’s practiced hands. He takes one of his
big knives and poses for a moment beside the struggling fish.
These greedy sons-a-bitches will eat
their own guts.
He slices into the shark’s underbelly. We hear the sound of
entrails plopping into the water. Brody is almost retching,
and Hooper is just displeased.
ANGLE ON THE WATER
The gutted shark swimming in circles biting at its own
Fins closing in on the wounded shark.
Go ahead, you cannibals. Tell ’em
where you got it!
A boil of water and the flash of fins and teeth as the local
sharks erupt in a feeding frenzy, jaws snapping, blood
spewing, a sudden display of the fury and blind predatory
drive of the fearsome species.
What’s that supposed to prove?
Just a little appetizer. I want our
porker to know we’re serving. I want
to put some iron into that big yap…
HOOPER AND BRODY REACT AS WE
EXT. THE OCEAN – AFTERNOON
The Orca is drifting in neutral. The ocean is like gelatin,
the sun sucking heat waves from its surface. Brody at the
stern, handkerchief on his head to protect from further
sunburn, has been handed the slimiest job on a shark hunt:
the ladling out of chum. There are several empty chum barrels.
A flag buoy bobs in the wake of the boat, another waits to
be tossed over the side. Brody is reeling with nausea. He
opens his overnight kit and takes out a handkerchief and
some Old Spice after-shave. He pours the after-shave into
the cloth, presses it to his nose. Hooper is also in the
Keep that chum line going — we’ve
got five good miles. Don’t break it.
Who’s driving the boat?
Nobody. We’re drifting with the
(using the fish finder)
Nothing. Nothing, nothing, nothing.
Hell, in the old days we went out
with good charts, good sounding lead,
and a damn good compass. Nowadays,
these kids are afraid to go out
without depth finders, radar, radio,
electric toothbrush, every stupid
Quint opens a can of beer and drains it in one long pull,
crushing the empty and throwing it over the side. Hooper
drains his coffee from a styrofoam cup, and cracks it in his
hand with a silly “plup.” He stows the pieces in an empty
Get a fresh barrel.
Brody goes to unlash a fresh barrel, but can’t figure out
the knots. He finally tugs on a piece of rope, and it all
comes loose… barrel, shark cage, and, most important,
Hooper’s tanks, clattering and rolling on the deck.
Watch it! Compressed air — you screw
around with one of those and Boom!
Real fine stuff but it won’t mean a
thing to Mr. Whitey, of course… he
didn’t go to schools in electronics.
He was born with what he does best.
Eat. He’s a swimming appetite. ‘Course
he might eat this stuff, but then
I’ve seen him eat a rocking chair,
Next time, ask me.
The men are in different positions on the boat. Hooper on
the flying bridge. Quint in the stern, Brody hanging over
the rail, puking.
Quint takes a wide red strip of whale meat and a gnarled
squid from the garbage pail, and searches for a No. 2 hook
rig. He holds up a strip of whale.
That’s pilot whale, isn’t it?
It ain’t a Big Mac.
The expert don’t approve. What do
you thing? You’re closer to the
Brody shades his eyes from the white sun as Quint baits up.
Why are we way out here, when the
shark’s back there?
(snapping bait to his
…’cause this is where he lives.
You gotta think like they do.
Easy for you — they got a brain the
size of a radish.
Quint sits in the fighting chair. He casts off, murmuring as
the line feeds out.
Now if he weren’t around, we’d of
hooked something else by now, wouldn’t
we? But he scared ’em all away. Big
lonesome son of a bitch…
Quint at ease in his chair, Brody near him, practicing tying
knots. The line starts to move, a few feet at a time; both
men watch. Then the line whizzes off the reel. Brody jumps
- Hooper springs to the deck. Quint puts his hand on the
drag and addresses the situation softly.
— he’ll gulp it down now…
(making gulping noises)
Quint tightens drag and strikes. The line goes whizzing out.
Brody runs to Quint’s side. Hooper springs up to the flying
You got it?
(turning with the
Get behind me, dummy!
(shouts to Hooper)
Reverse her and turn — he’s taking
too much line!
Wet my reel, quick!
Brody goes to get water, the boat surges, he staggers. Brody
pours water on the screaming reel, nearly unspooled now.
Hooper is turning the boat around and the line changes
Starboard, for Chris’sake —
Hooper steers it sharply.
Hey, you! Farmer! Half-speed there…
(almost to himself)
Aye, Aye SIR. Stand by to repel
boarders. Poop the mainsail. Argh,
Again the line changes direction, down this time.
Where the hell is he going?
Quint reeling in like mad.
Oh, this ain’t foolin’ me —
(rod arcs down with a
Sure — try it!
He ad libs brief instructions to Brody as the line rushes
out and there is less tension. Quint is horsing up and down,
Makin’ believe it’s easy now.
The line is almost vertical, and Quint shows a hint of
bafflement. He reels in suspiciously.
Gettin’ ready to run again — no?
What’s he playin’ here?
(reels in furiously,
Put the gloves on!
Let’s see who’s gonna tease who now!
Let it go, don’t waste your time.
Down here, Hooper!
Hooper is rushing down.
I don’t know what it is, but it’s
not a shark.
(bathed in sweat;
Look — you may be a big Yahoo in
the lab, but out here you’re just
supercargo, and you’ll do as I say,
or you can take your gear and
backstroke home. Now get down here!
The leaders show above the water line. Brody is wide-eyed,
waiting for that first look.
The wire’s showing!
Unbuckle me — fast!
Grab the leader. He ain’t normal,
this one… they never —
It’s too wild, too erratic. It’s a
marlin or a stingray. It’s a gamefish.
Hooper snaps the rope onto the leader and holds on.
Watch your hands —
(suddenly to Brody)
Grab onto this!
Before he realizes what’s happening, Brody is clumsily
clutching at the big rod, appalled. Quint skips away for a
flying gaff. He picks one, turns…
That’s when the leader lashes free, sending Hooper crashing
backward in a serious fall, and the rod whips at Brody’s
forehead, drawing blood. Quint snatches up the rod and reels
The wires have been bitten through.
A marlin, or a stingray. Huh. Don’t
ever tell me my business again. Get
back up on the bridge.
Fasten the pole.
What’s the point with hooks and Lines? —
Don’t tell me my business!
(to Hooper, points)
Quarter-mile, that way. Full throttle.
Hooper shakes off his dizziness and obeys. Brody watches
Quint rig up a new leader, hook up the same bait.
gesturing at rod and
How — if they’re gonna keep on
What I do is trick him to the surface,
got that? Then I can jab him,
(goes to flybridge,
Think I’m gonna haul it in as if
he’s a catfish, like everyone else
Brody goes inside to inspect his forehead.
ON BRIDGE – HOOPER AND QUINT
What do you see?
At least you handle the boat all
right. Stop. Here… Cut the engine.
Hooper cuts the engines as Quint swings nimbly down. He stands
stock still on the main deck, motioning Brody to be silent.
Then picking up the newly rigged rod, Quint softshoes it
over to the chair. About to sit down, he freezes.
CLOSE – QUINT
looking hard at something.
CLOSE – BRODY
staring, eyes widening.
CLOSE – HOOPER
moving in, surprised, interested, fascinated.
THEIR COMBINED POINT OF VIEW
We see the shark. First the fin… then the head and upper
jaws, ten or twenty yards off the side of the boat. It finally
submerges, its tail giving a final slap.
ANGLE ON QUINT
He puts his rod away and stares at it. And stares. And stares.
Hooper is the first to break the silence.
20 feet, if it’s an inch…
25 feet. And three tons of him there.
Hooper is nearly beside himself with a strange ecstasy. He
leaps toward his gear.
(quietly, to Brody)
I never saw one that big.
What do we do? Get some help? Radio
Quint ignores him and moves off into the pilot house, where
he swiftly takes out his green case, and opens it to begin
to assemble something inside it. Brody is alone on the deck
How’re we gonna handle this?
Hooper is contained in his own excitement. He has finally
come up with what he was looking for — an expensive Nikon
through which he peers intently at the shark alongside. He
is talking half to himself as he fine-tunes the range finder
He is squeaking and bubbling in an unsuppressed emotional
(very, very high)
There’s a formula! Girth, about 150
inches, squared, divide by 800 —
son of a bitch, they are not going
to believe this! — divide by 2000…
You’re right, you old fart! Three
(ad libs ecstasy)
CLOSE ON QUINT IN THE PILOT HOUSE
He is assembling the Greener harpoon gun, deftly screwing on
the long wooden stock, the heavy steel barrel, and big shaft
with the wicked barbs, the frame all rigged with line. Past
him, on the deck, we can still see Hooper. As Quint is working
with the gun, the radio suddenly squawks into life.
RADIO VOICE (V.O.)
Amity Point Light Station to Orca.
This is Amity Point Light Station,
Quint snaps the mouthpiece to his lips.
RADIO VOICE (V.O.)
I have Mrs. Martin Brody here…
Put her on.
…push this? Oh. It’s working. Hello,
This is Quint, Missus.
I just wanted to know if you were
all right… the Coast Guard let me
use their radio. Is Chief Brody there?
Well… is everything all right?
Just fine, Missus. We’ll be back
soon. Everything’s fine. We haven’t
seen anything yet. Orca out.
He snaps off the radio, and, for good measure, pulls the
plug from the power source.
ANGLE FROM DECK
The big shark is slicing through the water just below the
surface, its fin high, the big gray back glistening, the
ANGLE – INCLUDING FOREDECK
Damn it! I need something in the
foreground to give it some scale.
Martin! Stand here! No, to your left!
He is positioning Martin frantically, trying to include Brody,
the shark, and the Orca in the same frame. Quint finishes
with the gun, and as a final gesture, snaps an explosive
cartridge into the breech. He empties the box of cartridges
onto the table, snatches up a big handful, and drops them
into a pocket, and heads out on deck, bound for the bow
Quint appears with the harpoon gun. He throws one end of the
line to Hooper.
Here. Rig this to the forward keg up
He indicates the barrels on the foredeck.
Get up there and steer her. Follow
my hand, and hold ‘er steady. I’ve
got to get a clean shot at that
Quint moves up toward the bow, Brody goes up to the flying
bridge to take the wheel, Hooper starts for the foredeck,
but stops to rummage in his kit, throwing gear around as he
desperately hunts for something.
Hurry up, rig the line!
ANGLE ON HOOPER
He finds what he’s looking for. A small, powerful strobe
unit, waterproofed, a miniature signal beacon. He triggers
it, and it begins to pulse with a light we can see even in
Hooper scampers to the foredeck and begins to rig the light
to the first barrel, as the shark begins to surface near the
Come to port. Watch my hand. Steady
He guides Brody with hand signals. Brody tries urgently to
get it right, not to oversteer, to try to hold the big boat
with its throbbing diesels on the course that Quint is
The line, man, the line!
Hooper is rigging like crazy.
FROM THE FLYING BRIDGE
Brody steering f.g., Hooper on the foredeck with the barrels,
Quint leaning out over the pulpit, the gun at the ready, the
shark crossing inexorably in front of them.
CLOSE ON QUINT
Agonizing over his shot as the shark approaches, glancing
back to see if the line is properly rigged and Hooper is
clear of it.
Get clear, damn you!
The shark is in position, Hooper shouts, a moment too late.
Quint fires. The harpoon slams into the shark behind his
head, half-way along the back in front of the big dorsal
Jesus H. Christ On a Crutch!
INSERT – COILED ROPE AND BARREL
The rope snaps out in a blur of violent motion, Hooper jumps
back, and the barrel leaps out of its rack, pulled by the
line rigged to the harpoon. It bounds forward and into the
sea, past Quint, who is already reloading, mounting another
steel shaft. In the distance, the barrel bobs and skips
violently in the water, dragged by the shark in his merciless
THE FOREDECK – QUINT
Now you’ve done it, you piss-ant.
Stop and rig a goddam tinker toy to
my gear. Let the bastard fight the
keg for a while. He can’t stay down
with that on.
Hooper, furious with himself, runs for the flying bridge to
take the helm from Brody.
THE FLYING BRIDGE, BRODY AND HOOPER
Hooper has snatched the wheel, and is ramming the throttle
forward as he spins the wheel in a frantic 180 degree turn.
Rig another keg! I’m bringing her
His eyes dart about the ocean, looking for the barrel, as he
hot-dogs the ship around in a violent expression of his own
disgust with himself.
God damn it! We had him!
I’m coming about!
He spins the wheel again, trying to make the big boat handle
like a formula speedster. The decks tip and the rigging sways
under the sudden strain. Brody is caught unaware, and tumbles
off his feet, sliding across the deck to fetch up against a
wall. the M1 Rifle is close to his hand. He stares at it.
FROM THE FLYING BRIDGE
Hooper is anguished, intense, trying to find the shark,
spinning the wheel, compounding his error, tipping the boat
in rolling turns as he crosses his own wake. Quint has turned
his back to the sea, and is in the pulpit looking up at
Hooper, staring at him, excluding everything else.
As Quint folds his arms and stares at Hooper, we realize the
sun is going down, and it’s getting dark.
Why don’t we go in? Get another crack
at him tomorrow.
We got a barrel on him. We can’t
lose him. We stay out here until we
Hooper throttles back, and the roar of the diesels subsides
and the boat resumes an even keel, slowly circling the ocean.
Let’s call in — we can radio and
have a big boat here in an hour…
You hired me, remember? It’s my
$10,000. It’s my shark…
EXT. ORCA – OPEN SEA – NIGHT
Throttled back to slow ahead, the boat circles the water
endlessly, staying over the shark like an avenging angel.
Its running lights gleam in the night, and a glow lights the
interior of the pilot house. A bright strobe glints on the
water winking once like a firefly.
INT. PILOT HOUSE – NIGHT
Brody and Hooper at the table, Quint at the wheel, keeping
his eye on the light.
He’s up again.
He corrects course slightly to keep the barrel buoy in sight.
Hooper is sitting at the table, morose. Brody is staring at
a couple of open cans of beans or beef stew, or some other
crappy rations Quint has on board. Dirty spoons stuck in the
open cans show us this has not been a formal dinner. Quint
fumbles on the chart shelf and produces some of his home
He takes a pull, and hands it to Hooper, who takes a double.
Brody touches the fresh abrasion on his forehead, where the
fishing rod caught him.
Quint bends forward and pulls his hair aside to show something
near the crown.
That’s not so bad. Look at this:
…St. Paddy’s Day in Knocko Nolans,
in Boston, where some sunovabitch
winged me upside the head with a
Brody looks politely. Hooper stirs himself.
(extends a forearm)
Steve Kaplan bit me during recess.
Quint is amused. He presents his own formidable forearm.
Wire burn. Trying to stop a backstay
from taking my head off.
(rolling up a sleeve)
Moray Eel. Bit right through a wet
Brody is fascinated. Quint and Hooper take a long pull from
Face and head scars come from amateur
amusements in the bar room. This
love line here…
(he bends an ear
…that’s from some crazy Frenchie
come after me with a knife. I caught
him with a good right hand right in
the snot locker and laid him amongst
Ever see one like this?
He hauls up his pants leg, revealing a wicked white scar.
Bull shark scraped me while I was
Nothing! A pleasure scar. Look here —
He starts rolling up his own dirty pants leg.
Slammed with a thresher’s tail. Look
just like somebody caressed me with
a nutmeg grater…
Brody is drawn into their boasting comparisons. He secretly
checks his own appendix scar, decides not to enter the
I’ll drink to your leg.
And I’ll drink to yours.
They toast each other. Brody looks around, sees the strobe
blink once through the darkened window.
Wait a minute, young fella. Look.
Just look. Don’t touch…
He starts lowering his pants to reveal a place on one hip
where the tissue is scarred and irregular.
…Mako. Fell out of the tail rope
and onto the deck. You don’t get
bitten by one of those bastards but
twice — your first and your last.
I think I can top that, Mister…
Hooper is pulling at his shirt, trying to get it off, but
it’s tangling its sleeves, and won’t come undone.
Gimme a hand, here. I got something
to show you —
Brody lends a hand. The shirt slips part way off.
(indicating his chest)
There. Right there. Mary Ellen Moffit
broke my heart. Let’s drink to Mary
The two men raise their mugs in a toast.
And here’s to the ladies. And here’s
to their sisters; I’d rather one
Miss than a shipload of Misters.
He drinks, Hooper follows.
Look a’ that — Bayonet Iwo Jima.
C’mon. Middle appendix —
I almost had ‘im.
Brody is looking at a small white patch on Quint’s other
What’s that one, there?
Tattoo. Had it taken off.
Don’t tell me — ‘Death Before
Dishonor.’ ‘Mother.’ ‘Semper Fi.’
Uhhh… ‘Don’t Tread on Me.’ C’mon —
‘U.S.S Indianapolis.’ 1944.
What’s that, a ship?
You were on the Indianapolis? In
CLOSE ON QUINT
Yeah. The U.S.S. Indianapolis.
June 29th, 1945, three and a half
minutes past midnight, two torpedoes
from a Japanese submarine slammed
into our side. Two or three. We was
still under sealed orders after
deliverin’ the bomb…the Hiroshima
bomb…we was goin’ back across the
Pacific from Tinian to Leyte. Damn
near eleven hundred men went over
the side. The life boats was lashed
down so tight to make the bomb run
we couldn’t cut a single one adrift.
Not one. And there was no rafts.
None. That vessel sank in twelve
minutes. Yes, that’s all she took.
We didn’t see the first shark till
we’d been in the water about an hour.
A thirteen-footer near enough. A
blue. You measure that by judgin’
the dorsal to the tail. What we didn’t
know… of course the Captain knew…I
guess some officers knew… was the
bomb mission had been so secret, no
distress signals was sent. What the
men didn’t know was that they wouldn’t
even list us as overdue for a week.
Well, I didn’t know that — I wasn’t
an officer — just as well perhaps.
So some of us were dead already —
in the water — just hangin’ limp in
our lifejackets. And several already
bleedin’. And the three hundred or
so laying on the bottom of the ocean.
As the light went, the sharks came
crusin’. We formed tight groups —
somewhat like squares in an old battle —
You know what I mean — so that when
one come close, the man nearest would
yell and shout and pound the water
and sometimes it worked and the fish
turned away, but other times that
shark would seem to look right at a
man — right into his eyes — and in
spite of all shoutin’ and poundin’
you’d hear that terrible high
screamin’ and the ocean would go
red, then churn up as they ripped
him. Then we’d reform our little
squares. By the first dawn the sharks
had taken more than a hundred. Hard
for me to count but more than a
hundred. I don’t know how many sharks.
Maybe a thousand. I do know they
averaged six men an hour. All kinds —
blues, makos, tigers. All kinds.
In the middle of the second day,
some of us started to go crazy from
the thirst. One fella cried out he
saw a river, another claimed he saw
a waterfall, some started to drink
the ocean and choked on it, and some
left our little groups — our little
squares — and swam off alone lookin’
for islands and the sharks always
took them right away. It was mainly
the young fellas that did that —
the older ones stayed where they
was. That second day — my life jacket
rubbed me raw and that was more blood
in the water. Oh my. On Thursday
morning I bumped up against a friend
of mine — Herbie Robinson from
Cleveland — a bosun’s mate — it
seemed he was asleep but when I
reached over to waken him, he bobbed
in the water and I saw his body upend
because he’d been bitten in half
beneath the waist. Well Chief, so it
went on — bombers high overhead but
nobody noticin’ us. Yes — suicides,
sharks, and all this goin’ crazy and
dyin’ of thirst. Noon the fifth day,
Mr. Hooper, a Lockheed Ventura swung
around and came in low. Yes. He did
that. Yes, that pilot saw us. And
early evenin’, a big fat PBY come
down out of the sky and began the
pickup. That was when I was most
frightened of all — while I was
waitin’ for my turn. Just two and a
half hours short of five days and
five nights when they got to me and
took me up. Eleven hundred of us
went into that ocean — three hundred
and sixteen got out. Yeah. Nineteen
hundred and forty five. June the
Anyway, we delivered the bomb.
EXT. OCEAN – NIGHT
Quint has just finished his story, and we are looking across
the quiet night sea to the Orca slowly circling in the night,
the warm light in the pilot house barely revealing the figures
of the three men inside, the red and green running lights
winking along the ship’s flanks. We hear the distant boom
and drawn-out hoot of a whale.
INT. ORCA PILOT HOUSE – NIGHT
What the hell?
It’s a whale out there.
There’s a brief, eerie pause. Quint breaks the silence by
muttering into song, which he slowly swells.
Show me the way to go home… I’m
tired and I want to go to bed. I had
a little drink about an hour ago,
and it went right to my head.
Gradually, Hooper and Brody join in, and the pilothouse
becomes a warm cozy place.
The Orca and its song in the night. In the foreground, the
barrel and strobe light flash up into view, and behind them,
the big dorsal fin surfaces, and glides ominously towards
INT. PILOT HOUSE
The song is continuing, and we hear the barest hint of a
scraping sound from the hull deep beneath the men. Quint’s
eyes abruptly narrow as his sensitive ears are the first to
hear the abrasion of his ship. Things vibrate on the shelves.
Quint stops singing, Hooper and Brody continue a duet. The
scraping repeats, and Hooper now senses it. He drops out of
the song, leaving Brody singing solo.
(quietly, to Hooper)
Start the engines.
As Brody hears this and is about to stop singing, the boat
is suddenly bumped from below, and the gentle scraping turns
to a violent assault somewhere on the understructure of the
vessel. Water bubbles up into the hold. Brody starts, and
looks at the radio. He is about to move towards it when
Quint’s urgent instructions stop him.
He’s busting the shaft! Start the
The bilge pumps. There —
He leaves Brody in the pilot house, and runs onto the deck,
grabbing his M-1 rifle as he goes. Brody hits a switch and
we hear the pumps starting.
ANGLE ON THE ORCA
Hooper is on the flybridge, starting the engines, but the
diesels sound wrong.
Cut the engines!
The boat is assaulted again. Quint fires over the stern,
emptying a clip into the water.
Get up forward! Watch for him!
Brody moves cautiously up to the bow.
Keep your eyes open, Mr. Hooper!
Hooper stands ready on the bridge, Quint pacing the stern
Nobody sleeps! Nobody.
He jams a fresh clip into the M-1. The men scan the seas
around them. Quint resumes their song, louder this time,
Show me the way to go home… I’m
tired and I want to go to bed.
Hooper and Brody join in from their respective positions.
EXT. OCEAN, WIDE ON THE ORCA
The men in place, singing, the water sparkling towards the
horizon, the stars twinkling above. The sound of a distant
whale in distant counterpoint.
EXT. THE ORCA – DAWN
Brody is at the wheel on the flying bridge, while Hooper and
Quint have a hatch up on the stern, and are working together
to repair the damaged rudder controls torn loose by the shark.
Hooper is bucking the steel rod, while Quint is hammering
away at the joint, trying to drive a new pin.
The engine is idling. Bits of iron clutter the deck, along
with a few rough, outsized tools and greasy rags and gaskets.
More left rudder! More! Left hand
down now, Chief.
Brody tries to comply.
(shifting his grip)
Lemme get a better angle on it. Now.
Quint hammers again.
He’s bent the housing. You can hear
And we can. The Orca’s diesels are no longer smooth. Brody
suddenly sees something, and points.
BRODY’S POINT OF VIEW – THE WATER
The barrel is surfaced directly ahead of them, just off the
port side. They are drifting up to it.
The strobe light winks at them. Quint holds up a hand:
Everything stops as they watch the barrel coming slowly up
He takes a killing lance from the rack. Hooper gets a
He’s under the keg. Careful —
Hooper leans out gingerly, snagging the barrel with the hook.
It bobs lightly in the water, an innocent bystander. Hooper
shifts his pole, takes hold of the rope, poling it in.
Easy — just want to goose him up.
The minute he runs, drop it or you’ll
lose your hands.
Hooper gets the line and starts hauling it up. No resistance.
It comes easily over the transom into a coil on the deck.
He and Quint exchange looks.
Here — gimme. I don’t see what he’s
WATER – ANGLE
Both men are draped over the side, their chins almost touching
the water on the aft side. From the opposite starboard
direction, fully unfastened from the barrel, comes the Great
White. First the fin, then the conical nose and the upper
border of wide, grinning teeth. It knifes through the water
in absolute silence, propelling itself with tremendous speed
toward the unsuspecting men.
CLOSE – BRODY
His instincts shine — as does his newly-acquired sense of
(top of his lungs)
CLOSE – HOOPER AND QUINT
They turn just in time, and a long spine-stretch saves them
from instant decapitation. The Great White passes the transom,
the harpoon still in its side and trailing five feet of chewed-
off cable. It rolls on its side and looks at them as it
Past the stern the huge tail lashes out, ripping the rope
out of Quint’s hands, shearing a huge swath through the paint,
peeling it off like a plane, taking one of the bronze letters
out of “Orca.” The shark begins an arc to sea, its fin cutting
the water, and starts circling the boat. Quint notices his
cut hand, palm bleeding, realizing how close he came to losing
Haul in that rope — it’ll foul us!
(then to Brody on the
Start the engine!
The diesels start with a terrible grinding.
Easy! It’ll tear right out!
The shaft is giving.
Hooper slams the hatch, kicks the tools to one side, clearing
the deck for action once again.
That’s it! Radio in for help!
Shut up! Just pump her out!
(coming down off the
Yeah, Captain, as soon as I make a
Brody heads for the radio in the pilot house.
QUINT – CLOSE
A perfectly terrible look comes over him. He raises up and
starts after Brody. Brody disappears into the cabin. Quint
pauses outside and sees:
INSERT – QUINT’S LEAD-CENTREED BASEBALL BAT
his calloused hand grabs it up fiercely.
INT. RADIO SHACK
Brody picks up the radio, flicking on knobs and lights on
the complex console.
Beg your pardon —
ANGLE – DOORWAY
Quint appears, silhouetted in the hot light of the door,
raising his bat.
Duty first and pleasure after —
CLOSE – BRODY
looking up in horror, covering his face.
CLOSE – QUINT
Quint brings down the bat with all the strength he can summon.
Sparks fly, lights blink and go out, plastic and sections of
metal ricochet all over the cabin as Quint demolishes the
Quint takes a happy breath, winks at Brody and hands him the
Brody’s adrenaline turns his fear into rage. His glasses are
cracked or broken by flying pieces of radio. He seizes the
bat, and pound the shattered radio for emphasis.
Some great idea! Now where are we?
Some goddamn skipper you are. You’re
certifiable, y’know that? You’re a
real treat! Certifiable! Bananas!
His tirade is interrupted by an urgent bellow from Hooper.
CLOSE – HOOPER
Pointing at the fin.
Coming right to us!
No — comin’ right at us! Slow ahead,
he’ll hit us head on —
(the engine clanks)
Slower! Throttle back —
ANGLE – OVER THE BOW
Hard to port!
Hooper pulls the boat into a tight turn and Quint has a shot
at the upward rolling flank. He sinks it with careful
Try shakin’ that out!
Brody emerges from the cabin as the rope zips overboard, and
the barrel, changing over, catapults into the air before
plunging into the ocean in a cloudy splash.
(shouting to Quint)
Did you get him in the head?
No! No! No!
Swing around! After him!
ON THE FLYBRIDGE
Hooper can see the fin racing ahead of the barrel. Diving
down. Up again — Quint prepares another iron. Brody is
digging in his bag. He comes up with his 2″ .357 service
More gas… go to half! Get me right
alongside him —
The engine thuds and knocks.
We can’t rev it up this high —
Suddenly the barrel gongs into the side of the Orca.
Hooper skillfully avoids the speeding rope.
Quint leans to one side, harpoon over his head. The Great
White breaks water and…
Take two, they’re small!
He sinks it deep. We hear shots. As the new rope whips out,
Brody can be seen standing on the gunwale, in regulation
police combat pistol stance, holding his .357 in both hands,
firing at the shark’s head.
Quint shakes his head in amused disbelief at this, as the
barrel goes over.
(shouting at Brody)
Don’t shoot him any more! He’s crazy
on his own blood already!
I can’t stand here doing nothing!
Order in the court!
WATER LEVEL ANGLE
He has seen the two barrels pop to the surface.
Three’ll do it! He’s havin’ trouble
He yells to Hooper and Brody as he swings behind the controls.
Grab yourselves a couple of poles!
Quint steers “Slow Ahead,” engine protesting, as he maneuvers
toward the moving barrels. Quint peers down, steering closer
Get ready! Now snag ’em!
Together Brody and Hooper hook a barrel-rope and hold on for
dear life as the shark changes course.
Pull in the ropes and tie ’em onto
the transom — free ride.
Brody and Hooper pull in with all they are worth as Quint
helps out by wheeling in a circle. He laughs to himself,
enjoying the spectacle.
CLOSE – HOOPER
securing the rope to a cleat but allowing the barrel to hang
overboard. Brody ties his now-perfect bowline adjacent cleat.
WIDE ANGLE – ORCA
The boat is jarred violently from side to side as the
underwater force of the Great White jerks and heaves them to
and fro, up and down, side to side…
ANGLE – HOOPER AND BRODY
are both torn off their feet as the boat is thrust forward.
FLYBRIDGE – QUINT
sees the fin ahead. It is pulling the boat.
Get tired! That’s the idea! Here’s a
little reverse for you!
The shark leaps partially out of the water, and the sight is
both horrifying and awesome. Its jaws break water, snapping
at the ropes that have him snarled and frustrated.
Quint throws the Orca into neutral and shouts down:
Haul in — watch the prop!
With that, Quint slides down to the prow, putting another
shaft onto his gun, finding satisfaction in its heft and
balance. The shark can be seen directly ahead, threshing
Now! Untie ’em! Quick! He’ll tear us
He fires the iron, and the shark veers downward in a gushing
shower of spray.
HOOPER AND BRODY
They are trying to untie from the cleats, but both ropes are
stretched too taut. They jump out of the way, falling flat
on the deck as the ropes sweep over them, knocking over
objects, skeetering across the deck. A tight jerking motion,
and the Orca is dragged through the water — backwards. And
much too fast. Water is splashing up over the transom in its
backward wake. The engines groan and complain.
Damn head is too far away. He’s too
Wrenched to one side, Quint is knocked from his feet.
CLOSE – THE TWO CLEATS
A moment of slackness, and then a great surge of raw strength.
The rope snaps the cleats off, screws and splintered wood
spraying — and the barrels fly over the water. They disappear
beneath the turbulent grey surface.
The three men, breathing heavily, bruised and pouring sweat,
look out at the blank water.
ANGLE – OCEAN
Pop — pop — pop. One, two, three, the barrels surface —
ready for more.
(amazed at the shark’s
He can’t go so deep. Not with all
those on him.
Brody looks down at his feet. There is salt water up to their
What about us?
Have to pump her steady, s’all.
The barrels start a wide circle, each cuts through the water,
pushing a wave before it and leaving a wake behind.
Follow him —
You start pumpin’ out here.
Quint tosses Brody the hand pump, then picks up his M-1, and
checks the load.
He’s heading under — !
No way! He can’t!
ANGLE – OCEAN
The barrels approaching the Orca dip below the surface, one —
two — three.
Where’d he go?
Brody looks around. Hooper on the flying bridge searching in
all directions. Quint is looking more appalled every second.
He can’t stay down with three barrels
on him! Where is he?!
Have you ever had one do this?
(and he means this)
Booming thud at the keel. Brody slides on the wet deck and
Quint loses his footing, falling into Brody’s arms.
WITH HOOPER ON THE FLY BRIDGE
It seems the only place out of reach of the shark. Quint
climbs up, Brody following him, reloading his pistol.
Just then, the barrels pop up ahead, veer left, and duck
BRODY AND HIS POINT OF VIEW
The barrels have surfaced and we see the monster shadow
sliding under the Orca, seemingly endless. Violent scraping
He’s trying to sink us!
Dead astern! Zig-zag!
Quint is grimly silent. Brody senses that Quint is in the
fight of (and for) his life.
The Orca taking evasive action. But the three barrels are
closing the gap, the engines coughing and missing, destroying
themselves with every rotation of the damaged shaft.
He’s chasing us! I
don’t believe it.
Full throttle! To port!
ANGLE ON THE BRIDGE
Hooper is jamming the throttle forward, but the engine is
pounding and knocking wildly. The barrels circle and move
- Quint has his rifle ready.
(suddenly giving Quint
He leaps to his gear, trying desperately to get his dart
Just then, the shark attacks, breaking water and rising over
the boat like a rocket; snout, jaws, pectoral fins, belly,
falling sideways. A vast spray drenches the men. Quint fires
into the belly, the bullets pocking the smooth whiteness.
Keep him there! Keep him!
The Orca shudders from side to side. From Hooper’s point of
view we can the shark gripping the transom in his jaws,
shaking the boat as he saws his massive head from side to
side, trying to tear a chunk out of the very hull. Quint has
reloaded and is firing into the fish. Brody has a wicked
pointed gaff, and is swinging wildly at the snout, gashing
and gouging it, trying for the eyes. The killing lust is on
all three men.
The boat surges, the shark gives a final unbalances wrench,
and disengages. The dorsal fin circles off, beginning a wide
loop around the boat.
The engine quivers and dies, the boat without power, rolling
half awash, a wounded victim.
The fin dips, the barrels follow, the shark disappears beneath
the waves. There is complete silence.
THE THREE MEN ON DECK
In the dead quiet, we can hear the lap of waves against the
hull, the hoarse panting breathing of the men, the pings and
pops of the cooling, dying engines.
QUINT AND THE TRANSOM
He eyes the stern. Huge cracks and broken timber testify to
the fury of the attack.
(very quietly, to
What can that gun of yours do?
Power head with 20 ccs of strychnine
nitrate. If I can hit him. I can
kill him. But I gotta be close.
(the awful realization)
You gotta go in the water…
ON DECK, LATER
Quint and Hooper are assembling the shark cage, its shiny
bars the only undamaged things on deck. Brody is working
too, bolting the sections together.
(in command now)
Rig the cable to the roof eyebolts.
The men are speaking in near whispers, quiet in the silence
that surrounds them. Hooper is in his wet suit, adjusting
weights, mask, tanks, etc. The cage is standing in the stern.
Quint runs a line from the gin pole to the roof section.
Hooper climbs in though the top.
Take me up.
Brody cranks the winch, hoisting cage and Hooper into the
air. Quint balances the gin pole lines, Hooper crouching in
the cage, examining it for stresses; satisfied, he holds out
his hand. Quint puts the spear gun into it.
CLOSE ON HOOPER IN THE CAGE
He examines his weapon, checking the power load, with the
big wicked-looking syringe head uncapped to reveal its razor
Lower away, Chief.
(then, to Quint)
Try and keep him off me till I’m
Hooper inside, looking out the bars of the cage, gives Brody
a reassuring smile, then pops his mouthpiece between his
teeth and checks his regulator. Brody steps back, and with
Quint guiding the cage, begins lowering it off the gin pole
boom arm into the sea alongside the boat.
Brody and Hooper stare at each another as their faces pass,
Hooper sliding down into the cold grey ocean.
As Hooper disappears beneath the surface, Quint and Brody
exchange a long look between them.
UNDERWATER – CAGE
HOOPER’S POINT OF VIEW
Submerging. The sky, horizon, water line, clean fresh sea
air then… the magnificent innerspaces, with bubbles
sparkling in front of us.
ANGLE – HOOPER IN THE CAGE
as he floats to twenty feet Hooper never stops looking around
360 degrees. He removes the rubber guard from the needle and
EXT. THE SURFACE – BRODY AND QUINT
Their turning heads tell us that the barrels are still
Suddenly, both heads stop turning.
The barrels have come to a stop. Delicately, they change
course and meander toward the lowered cage.
UNDERWATER – HOOPER
His back is to us. He is just now completing a visual sweep
and turns, eyes front into closeup and: fixes wildly on
something monstrous… and fascinating.
HOOPER’S POINT OF VIEW
The water is clear and shafts of sunlight streak downward in
the blue. From the deep gloom — diving slowly, smoothly —
comes the shark. It moves with no apparent effort, sinuous
beyond comparison. As it nears the cage, it turns, and its
ghastly length passes right in front of him: first the snout,
then the jaw, slack and smiling, then the black eye.
Hooper tentatively reaches out. It is too far for the
strychnine pole. The vinyl flesh is pocked with bullet holes,
iron scars, gaffing hooks and strange open wounds that tinge
the passing currents with pink.
The trailing barrels gong and scratch the keel of the Orca
above. Brody and Quint leap back.
HOOPER – CLOSE
The shark has vanished into a cloud of rising silt. Hooper,
expecting the shark to attack out of that same general
direction, braces himself, pole extended through the bars,
breathing faster, straining his eyes into the gloom and…
we see that the shark attacking from behind him.
The cage is sent careening. Hooper grabs the bars for dear
life. The shark has grabbed the steel struts in its brutal
jaws, shaking the cage relentlessly from side to side, bending
the bars like clothes hangers. Hooper can’t turn the pointed
end of the pole around, his body jammed as far away from the
non-rational attacker as possible.
Hooper is trapped.
The shark withdraws to get some running room then charges
again. The bleeding snout thrust deeper into the yawing bars,
the jaws snapping and twisting, two feet from Hooper’s torso,
the tail thrusting it forward. Hooper drops the strychnine
pole between the bars and it tumbles slowly toward rapture
All the shark needs is one more good thrust before separating
Hooper at the waistline. Through frantic bubbles Hooper
fumbles with the overhead hatch cover, kicking up and out of
the cage. The shark backpedals with its tail, but the broad
head won’t shake loose.
Hooper rushes downwards, after the strychnine pole.
ANGLE – SHARK
The shark twists free of the cage and arrows downward after
Hooper nearly recovers the pole. Again it slips from his
frightened grasp and this time disappears into a narrow abyss.
Hooper turns and looks up.
The Great White is lunging at him, twenty feet above.
One of the barrel ropes snakes around the cage rope and pulls
HOOPER – DEEP
Turning to meet the monster which — though held back for a
moment by the snarled rope — now surges forward.
SURFACE – BRODY AND QUINT
The Orca is listing dangerously aft, the ginpole bent almost
to the breaking point. Brody is in a frenzy trying to haul
up the cage. Quint attaches the end of Brody’s rope to a
hand-winch. The ginpole is splitting.
Let go of it!
The pole gives way, the rope whipping down on the gunwale…
the pulling of the tonnage below is tipping the Orca, dragging
it, but Quint won’t give up the winch. Brody hauls on the
UNDERWATER – HOOPER
maneuvering downward, away from the jaws… Suddenly the
crazed shark veers upward for the surface.
SURFACE – QUINT
The winch is working faster now, Quint demonically winding
it in. The crushed cage bangs against the hull then breaks
Brody is horrified. The cage is empty!
(a horrible scream)
He’s comin’ up — !
He’s taken him!
The shark breaks water right beside the Orca, rising with a
great whooshing noise. It rises vertically, towering overhead,
blocking out the sun. The pectoral fins seem to reach forward.
The shark, in all of its monstrous glory, falls onto the
stern of the boat with a shattering crash, narrowly missing
Quint and Brody. It drives the stern underwater, the ocean
pours in over the transom. The jaws snap from side to side.
Brody flounders backwards away from it.
CLOSE – BRODY
He is clinging to the mast for dear life, as the ship begins
to tilt to stern, and everything starts to break loose around
NIGHTMARE ANGLE – DECK OF THE ORCA
The giant jaws are snapping irresistibly at everything: great
chunks of wood torn out of the deck and superstructure.
Deck chair, irons, rope, gear, beercans, bottles, Brody’s
bag, all are food for the insatiable maw blindly churning
Quint is clinging next to a rack of lances: he is enraged at
this ultimate violation of his territory. He snatches up a
lance and hurls himself at the shark with a wordless bellow.
The great head weaves side to side, the deck is at a
treacherous incline, slippery with blood and seawater. Quint’s
footing falters and slips, he stumbles at the Mouth of Hell,
the big teeth seize him and snap.
Quint’s roar of rage and pain is choked off as his body is
clamped between the grinding, sawing teeth, and his head and
legs suddenly contort as the shark’s teeth meet across his
torso. Blood gushes onto the deck. The remnants of his body
tumble from the shark’s mouth.
Brody sees the horror, hears the screams — in his
desperation, he tears loose one of Hooper’s remaining air
tanks, and hurls it at the monster. It tumbles into the bloody
well, wedging across the back of the mouth, the thick steel
blocking the cruel jaws.
The shark’s head shakes even more violently, trying to clear
the cold iron, but the tank is in to stay.
DECK OF THE ORCA, LISTING BADLY
To avoid sliding into the jaws, Brody scrambles on the titling
deck, bracing himself in the cabin door to avoid pitching
down into the bloody mouth. He fights his way into the cabin,
already a shambles.
Below him, on the deck, the shark lunges again, shifting
weight so that the boat in now stern down, and listing to
the side. Water from the sea pours into the cabin.
Another lunge by the shark. The huge snout and jaws slam up
against the doorframe, blocking escape, bloody, gnashing.
More seawater. To stay in the cabin is to go down with the
Brody clambers as far from the shark as he can, against the
forward wall of the pilothouse. He sees the window Hooper
used before. It’s blocked by barrels and debris. He breaks
the side window highest above the water, edges out onto the
The shark rolls around, now half in the water. The ship is
sinking, the sea is not a viable alternative. Brody climbs
up into the flying bridge.
The shark is still lunging and snapping. Brody is forced to
climb higher and higher as the ship slowly sinks beneath
CLOSE – BRODY
He scrambles for his life onto the flying bridge, sees the M-
1 stuck there, seizes it.
OVER BRODY, LOOKING DOWN AT THE STERN
He is bracing himself, aiming the rifle, taking a bead on
the steel tanks, silver gleaming in the bloody shark’s mouth.
He fires. And fires. Bullets shatter the shark’s teeth,
punching holes in the dripping snout.
WIDE ON THE ORCA – EXPLOSION
With a muffled boom, the perfect symmetry of the shark is
suddenly blown apart in a geyser of steel and blood as Brody’s
shot hits the pressurized tank. A 30-foot cloud of water,
steel, shark and debris covers the sky.
A gigantic convulsion hurls the Great White’s mangled body
into the sea. The Orca slowly begins to turn over in its
The shark’s carcass floating down in a cloud of blood and
A shadow clouds the waters, and the Orca’s mass begins to
slip into the frame.
CLOSE – HOOPER
Emerging from beneath the surface, he raises his mask, spits
out his mouthpiece and kicks toward Brody.
SURFACE – BRODY AND HOOPER
Brody is holding onto a cushion, barely afloat, relieved the
shark is dead, yet stunned to see Hooper is still alive. The
two men share weak laughter, which soon trails off.
You think we can get back with those?
SURFACE – BRODY AND HOOPER – ANOTHER ANGLE
They swim through the debris, using two barrels as floats,
as dozens of seagulls feast on shark remains on the surface.
What day is this?
Wednesday… No, it’s Tuesday, I
Think the tide’s with us?
Just keep kicking.
Y’know, I used to hate the water…
I can’t imagine why.
HIGH SHOT FROM SHORE
The two tiny, miserable heroes swim ashore as the credits