SCRIPT TO SCREEN: Department S – ‘Six Days’

First Broadcast: March 9th, 1969

The script is bound in a handsome light-blue folder with the Department S logo printed in black in the lower left corner. The episode title, Six days, is printed on the middle of the cover.

Inside the cover are 88 pages of different colours; 51 white, 33 pink, 3 blue and 1 yellow. The different colours signify changes and revisions, common practice in the TV and film business.

The first page of the script has the Department S logo printed in red and the typed message: The Series Created by: Monty Berman and Dennis Spooner. 

Page two has “Six Days” Screenplay by Gerald Kelsey, and Kelsey’s autograph.

Page 3 says:

  • Produced by Monty Berman
  • Script Supervision by Dennis Spooner

A Scoton Production

A.B.P. Elstree Studios

Boreham Wood

Herts.

Elstree 1600.

 Page 4 presents us with the cast list, divided into Principals, Supporting and Extras.

 Page 5 is the set list, divided into Studio interiors, Car Interiors, Studio Lot, Locations, Stock and Process shots. The latter are specified for scenes 51, 58, 60, 62, 67 and are all back projection for car interiors.

The script proper begins on page 6.

 The last three pages of the script are blue which shows that the end had been changed, it also states that scenes 154, 155, 156, 157 and 158 are deleted. If anyone has any idea what the original ending was supposed to be I would be grateful for any information.

On the first of the three blue pages someone has written Rosemary Nichols, a sign maybe that the pages I now have were originally intended for her. On the back of the last page of the script are a lot of handwritten stuff, indicating that the script was perhaps used by the second unit director. This is likely since they concern location shoots at Heathrow Airport. Apart from lists of scenes to shoot it says that lunch break is between 12:30 and 1:30. It also has some instructions for establishing shots using Sullivan’s double for Episode 7, “One of Our Aircraft Is Empty”, that obviously were shot at the same time.

When comparing the script to the episode we all know and love I found that all actors followed the scripted dialog almost to the letter with one exception… a certain PETER. Almost all his lines appear differently on tape than they do in the script. I can only add that the Jason King in the script is a great deal more boring than the one we see on screen, this is probably further proof that the character was modelled on, and by, PETER himself! In the following I will not point out very small differences, no doubt adapted by actors to make the dialogue flow more naturally, I will however present the more significant changes made by PETER.

The pre-credit sequence follows the script almost slavishly as does the beginning of the episode up to scene 27 which occurs immediately after Sullivan has driven Seretse to London. In the script two scenes follow that are not in the finished episode. Since one of them includes the first glimpse of our hero I chose to present them “in extencio”.

six-2

 

 

 

 

 

 

INT. HOTEL ROOM. NIGHT. STUDIO

ANNABELLE WEARING HER TOP COAT, IS POURING TWO DRINKS. SULLIVAN IS DEEP IN THOUGHT SITTING.

ANNABELLE

And all the passengers tell the same story?

SHE CROSSES WITH THE DRINKS AND HANDS HIM ONE. SULLIVAN NODS.

SULLIVAN

Right ….. Thanks. TAKES DRINK.

SULLIVAN

…..Cheers. – but it’s impossible. THEY SIP DRINKS.

ANNABELLE

One for our fiction department, eh?

SULLIVAN

I’ve been trying to reach him.

Where is he?

ANNABELLE

Out of town, plotting his latest masterpiece.

CUT TO:

INT. AIRCRAFT. FLIGHT DECK. DAY. STUDIO

ON KING: SITTING IN THE PILOT’S SEAT, AND MANIPULATING THE CONTROLS.

SOUND: JET AIRCRAFT.

IF WE THINK THAT HE IS FLYING THE AIRCRAFT WE SEE OUR MISTAKE AS WE PULL BACK. THEAIRCRAFT SOUND IS OF A JET PASSING. KING SLUMPS, VERY BORED, BACK INTO THE SEAT:

KING

…and I’d have finished it if Stewart hadn’t dragged me back. It’s a great plot – even for me. Full of mystery.

ANOTHER ANGLE.

ANNABELLE, NOTEPAD IN HAND, IS COPYING THE READINGS ON THE AIRCRAFT DIALS.

ANNABELLE

More than this one?

KING

Much more. This is simple isn’t it?

ANNABELLE STOPS WRITING AND TURNS.

ANNABELLE

Oh?

KING

Someone flew the plane…. the rest got knockout drops in their soup.

ANNABELLE

You think soup!…….Not coffee?

KING

A detail! The kite was landed and they were all kept drugged up to the eye-balls ’till they let them go.

ANNABELLE

They?

KING

The people responsible.

ANNABELLE

But who are they?……and why?

KING

Look, don’t expect me to do it all.

ANNABELLE GIVES HIM A LOOK. SHE PICKS UP A SCREW TOP BOTTLE AND AN ENVELOPE.

ANNABELLE

Well, if you’ve no other brilliant theories, make yourself useful…..

KING

Eh?

ANNABELLE

Samples of the fuel and the mud from the under-side of the fuselage, please!

KING FINDS THAT HE HAS GOT THEM. HE LOOKS HORRIFIED:

KING

Mud!!!!!!

With scene 30 we are back in the airline executive office and Sullivan’s conversation with Carter, the pilot, as in the screened version.

The following scene between Annabelle and Janet, the stewardess, are longer on screen than in the script. The script ends the scene after Annabelle says: “Are they still here?”

SCRIPT

KING

Ah, Stewart. The controller said that Golf Echo Bravo was listed missing twenty three hours after the last radio connection. Now if…

SULLIVAN

It doesn’t make sense.

KING

I haven’t even explained……

SULLIVAN

Walsham reported the loss of some company formula. Secrets…..

KING

From the plane? SULLIVAN NODS.

KING

There must be easier ways….

SULLIVAN

And it doesn’t take six days to remove a few papers from a briefcase.

SCREEN

KING

I don’t believe a word of it. Must be easier ways of stealing these dreary man-made fibres.

SULLIVAN

Six days to take a few papers from a briefcase.

KING

Exactly!

The next difference appears at scene 34, when Sullivan meets Hallet in his library. On screen the first part is missing:

HALLET

Sullivan, you’ll appreciate that after six days out of action I’ve…….

SULLIVAN

Aren’t you concerned?

HALLET

What?

SULLIVAN

To know what happened during those six days?

HALLET

I know no more than I told you.

The rest of act one is exactly as scripted.

Act two begins with Sullivan meeting Seretse outside the embassy. Look carefully at this scene and you will notice that the man getting out of the car and coming up to the Rolls is not Joel Fabiani, but a double. The scenes with Sullivan in the car are all shot in the studio using back projection.

We now come to the scene between Jason and Annabelle in Pecks office. A comparison may prove interesting.

six-3

SCRIPT

KING IS AT A TYPEWRITER TAPPING AWAY WITH TWO FINGERS.

ANNABELLE IS AT THE TELEPHONE TAKING NOTES ON A PAD AS SHE TALKS

ON THE WALL THERE IS A LARGE SCALE WALL MAP OF EUROPE AND ASIA WITH THE AIRLANES CLEARLY MARKED.

ANNABELLE

(INTO RECIEVER) Then the drug was added after the food was removed from the containers…? Right, thanks.

SHE HANGS UP

ANOTHER ANGLE

KING RIPS HIS SHEET OF PAPER OUT OF THE TYPEWRITER AND SITS LOOKING AT IT WITH A SMUG SMILE ON HIS FACE.

ANNABELLE PICKS UP A LARGE REFERENCE BOOK AND FLIPS OVER THE PAGES.

KING

If someone was interested in one of those three he probably booked after him.

ANNABELLE WITH INTEREST

ANNABELLE

Hey, you’ve got something. Did many book later?

KING

Stefan Borowitsch, and Two. Stefan Borowitsch, and Andre Durres. They both Andre Durres. They joined the aircraft in Rome.

ANNABELLE

Anything known?

KING

Interpol have nothing… I have friends…

ANNABELLE

Take your word for it. What have you got?

KING

Borowitsch is a Latvian… he’s also a jet pilot, you…

ANNABELLE REACTS, IMPRESSED

KING

Best topical reference library in the world – the Fleet newspapers.

ANNABELLE

So that’s where you got it?

KING

He crashed in the Baltic a couple of years ago.

ANNABELLE

Careless! What about Durres?

ON KING: PLEASED WITH HIMSELF

KING

He was with him.

TANNOY VOICE

Passengers for B.O.A.C. flight four two four for Rome and Cairo make their way to of their flight no. 430make their way to customs and emigration.

REPEATED IN FRENCH

SULLIVAN

(INTO RECIEVER) … Yes, Jason … Borowitsch and Durres.

ANNABELLE IS AGAIN STUDYING HER REFERENCE BOOK.

KING

(INTO RECIEVER)… Borowitch is was the only passenger who’s a pilot. Yes, I thought so… thank you. You know your trouble, Annie dear? Obsessed with science.

One of the catches with science is its incestuous obsession with itself… science for science sake.

ANNABELLE

Science isn’t doing so badly.

KING

Enlighten me. Enlighten me.

ANNABELLE

The mud from the underside the fuselage contains a red volcanic dust.

KING

(AFTER PAUSE) Fancy.

ANNABELLE

It didn’t come from Karachi, It didn’t come from or Rome, or any other airport, Karachi, or Rome, or anywhere they officially landed.

KING

So all we have to do is find an airport where there’s a red volcanic dust…

ANNABELLE

I have!

SHE GETS UP AND CROSSES TO THE WALL MAP. KING FOLLOWS HER.

ANNABELLE

Look (POINTS) Albania. They came right over it.

KING

Bully for science! Of course, only one snag. Albania is east of Rome.

ANNABELLE

Not that Far East.

KING

Mmmmm, they might have flown back.

ANNABELLE

The mud says they did! But interesting when we get the R/T tapes from Rome and Milan.

six-5

SCREEN

KING

Seretse booked first, then Hallet, and then Walsham. If someone was interested in one of those three he probably booked after him.

ANNABELLE

Hey, you’ve got something. How many did book later?

KING

Two. Stefan Borowitsch, and Andre Durres. They both joined the plane in Rome.

ANNABELLE

Anything on them?

KING

Interpol have nothing… I have some chums…

ANNABELLE

I’ll take your word for it.

KING

A couple of Fleet Street journalists… thanks you… best gossip columnists in the world.

ANNABELLE

What did they say?

KING

Stefan Borowitsch is a Latvian… he is also a jet pilot… he crashed in the Baltic a couple of years ago.

ANNABELLE

Careless! What about Durres?

KING

He was with him.

TANNOY VOICE

Pan American Airways announce the departure of their flight No. 430 for Rome and Cairo. Will passengers please make their ways to customs and emigration.

SULLIVAN

Yes, (INTO RECIEVER)… Yes, Jason… Borowitsch and Durres ….

(NO BOOK, SHE’S USING A CLIPBOARD)

KING

One of the catches with science is its incestuous obsession with itself… science for science sake.

ANNABELLE

Science isn’t doing so badly.

KING

Enlighten me. Enlighten me.

ANNABELLE

The mud from the underside the fuselage contains a red volcanic dust.

KING

Astounding!

ANNABELLE

I found it!

KING

Fancy!

ANNABELLE

Look (POINTS) Albania. They flew right over it.

KING

Albania is east of Rome. That’s a geographical fact. You mean they could have flown back. (AFTER PAUSE) Fascinating!

From here on everything is as scripted to the end of act 2, except the scene where Annabelle plays back the tape from Italy. The sequence on the film has been shortened compared to the script.

The third act begins with the office scene. It runs very much as scripted, the changes in dialogue seem to have been done on the spot to make the dialogue flow better. The scene between Sullivan and Seretse that follows is missing in the script which goes directly to the scene in Hallet’s study. It does pop up later as we will see; it has probably been moved up for better dramatic effect.

Durres and Walsham are very good at following the script in the apartment scene that follows, but when we cut to the car interior Annabelle (!) surprises by leaving a whole line out; she says “Think of my reputation!”. In the script she adds “Looks bad when a girl chases men”.

She is back in good form however in the following scene in Walsham’s apartment following the script to the letter. In the brief cut-away to Hallet however, there is a small difference; The papers he is photographing reads top secret on the right hand page and AN AGREEMENT BETWEEN GREAT BRITAIN AND THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA on the left. The script says it should be TOP SECRET ANGLO AMERICAN NAVAL TREATY (MEDITERRANIAN BASES). When we cut back to Annabel the Bank of Switzerland statement shows a balance of 444.000 Sfr, the script says £37.000. The last “in” entry on screen is 120.000fr the 17 -7-68, in the scripts it is £10.000 on the 17 of the month.

During the conversation between Annabelle and Janet a bit of dialogue is missing starting immediately after the cut-away to Jason in the car. It looks like this has been cut out to save time and the picture of Jason inserted instead to avoid a jump-cut. This missing piece of dialogue goes like this:

  • After Annabelle has left the apartment the script has the scene between Sullivan and Seretse discussed above. The next scene, between Jason and Annabelle in the car is very different:

INT. KINGS CAR. NIGHT. STUDIO. (BACKING) KING IS AT THE WHEEL AS THE DOOR OPENS AND ANNABELLE, STILL WEARING THE WIG, GETS IN.

ANNABELLE DRAGS OFF THE WIG.

SCRIPT

ANNABELLE

Zip me up, will you? You can’t have known him long.

JANET PULLS UP THE ZIP

JANET

Three months.

ANNABELLE

Ah, you’ll find out! Pity though. His one failing. Can’t be faithful to any woman.

SHE CROSSES AND GETS HER SHOES.

JANET

There’re are others?

ANNABELLE

Used to break my heart over them. Not anymore. Where are you going?

EXT. ANNABELLE GETS INTO CAR WHERE KING HAS BEEN WAITING.

ANNABELLE

Don’t panic. You’re safe.

KING

Good grief, what’s that?

ANNABELLE

A little thing I carry… just in case.

KING

You needed it?

ANNABELLE

(NODDING) The girl friend arrived. We’d met before.

KING

What happened?

ANNABELLE

I played the other woman. I think I’ve ruined a beautiful romance.

KING

Where is she?

ANNABELLE

Writing him a farewell letter. We’d better get going.

KING

No, I’ve a better idea. She may like a manly shoulder to weep on.

HE OPENS THE DOOR

ANNABELLE

Hope you’re wearing your drip drys. Got a feeling you’ll need ’em

The scene with Sullivan and Mr & Mrs Hallet stays very close to the script in the following scene, but when we cut back to Jason and Janet we are once again in unfamiliar territory:

hqdefault

SCREEN

KING

Seretse booked first, then Hallet, and then Walsham. If someone was interested in one of those three he probably booked after him.

ANNABELLE

Hey, you’ve got something. How many did book later?

KING

Two. Stefan Borowitsch, and Andre Durres. They both joined the plane in Rome.

ANNABELLE

Anything on them?

KING

Interpol have nothing… I have some chums…

ANNABELLE

I’ll take your word for it.

KING

A couple of Fleet Street journalists… thanks you… best gossip columnists in the world.

ANNABELLE

What did they say?

KING

Stefan Borowitsch is a Latvian… he is also a jet pilot… he crashed in the Baltic a couple of years ago.

ANNABELLE

Careless! What about Durres?

KING

He was with him.

TANNOY VOICE

Pan American Airways announce the departure of their flight No. 430 for Rome and Cairo. Will passengers please make their ways to customs and emigration.

SULLIVAN

Yes, (INTO RECIEVER)… Yes, Jason… Borowitsch and Durres ….

(NO BOOK, SHE’S USING A CLIPBOARD)

KING

One of the catches with science is its incestuous obsession with itself… science for science sake.

ANNABELLE

Science isn’t doing so badly.

KING

Enlighten me. Enlighten me.

ANNABELLE

The mud from the underside the fuselage contains a red volcanic dust.

KING

Astounding!

ANNABELLE

I found it!

KING

Fancy!

ANNABELLE

Look (POINTS) Albania. They flew right over it.

KING

Albania is east of Rome. That’s a geographical fact. You mean they could have flown back. (AFTER PAUSE) Fascinating!

six-1

SCREEN

NO CHANGE TO SCRIPT UNTIL…  

EXT. ANNABELLE GETS INTO CAR WHERE KING HAS BEEN WAITING.

KING

Good grief, I thought it was someone trying to pick me up.

ANNABELLE

Don’t panic. You’re safe.

KING

It’s an improvement.

ANNABELLE

Thank you.

KING

What happened?

ANNABELLE

His girlfriend the stewardess arrived. Since we’ve met before I played the other woman. I think I’ve ruined a beautiful romance.

KING

Poor thing. Is she still there?

ANNABELLE

I thought she ought to write him a farewell note. Shall we get going?

KING

If she’s that upset she might give away a bit more. Finish that off.

KING

It is my home.

JANET

Yes, but who are you?

KING

Sir Charles Hallet… give you any trouble.

NO CHANGE TO SCRIPT UNTIL…

KING

Did you like Albania?

JANET

Very much, but…

KING

It’s my home

JANET

Yes, but who are you?

KING

Sir Charles Hallet… give you any trouble?

JANET

Well, I didn’t have anything to do with him.

KING

And the other passengers?

JANET

Sleeping.

KING

Ahaa… my dear, when we Albanians make up our minds we never change them. I too make you a proposition. I want to use you again.

NO CHANGE TO SCRIPT UNTIL… 

KING

How did Hallet seem after… er treatment?

JANET

Normal.

KING

Normal? Be interesting to know exactly what they did.

JANET’S VOICE

Can’t tell you exactly. I wasn’t there. I gather it’s wasn’t there. I think it’s a new method they’ve a new method they’ve discovered…

NO CHANGE TO SCRIPT UNTIL… 

WALSHAM

Who are you?

KING

Kiria?

WALSHAM

Who is he?

JANET

I don’t know. I…

KING

Stot na goyam.

KING GETS UP TO LEAVE.

WALSHAM

What did you tell him?

JANET

How was …

KING

Dushka. Smielnia.

The rest of the act is as scripted apart from Walsham’s last line on screen which isn’t in the script.

Act four contains one of the highlights of this episode. After the questioning of Janet and the brief shot in Hallet’s library we are on the street, looking into King’s car. As the script says Annabelle is at the wheel. Later when the car pulls out from the curb and drive past the camera King is driving. In the close-up where King says He’s stopping! (in the script it’s Annabelle who says it) Annabelle is back in the driver’s seat. As the car stops and King jumps out the worst double in the business is used, he doesn’t look anything like Mr WYNGARDE!

From here on everything is as scripted except Jason King’s (and the episodes) last line which in the script reads:

Me (THEN) I think it’s time I went back and finished my novel…

With grateful and sincere thanks to Anders Edenholm.


The Hellfire Club: The OFFICIAL PETER WYNGARDE Appreciation Society: https://www.facebook.com/groups/813997125389790/

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