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The Supreme Team: A case study and screenplay exploration of a legendary drug crew

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THE SUPREME TEAM:
A CASE STUDY AND SCREENPLAY
EXPLORATION OF A LEGENDARY DRUG CREW
A Project
Presented
to the Faculty of
California State University Dominguez Hills
In Partial Fulfillment
of the Requirements for the Degree
Master of Arts
in
Humanities
by
Seth Ferranti
Fall 2010
UMI Number: 1496043
All rights reserved
INFORMATION TO ALL USERS
The quality of this reproduction is dependent upon the quality of the copy submitted.
In the unlikely event that the author did not send a complete manuscript
and there are missing pages, these will be noted. Also, if material had to be removed,
a note will indicate the deletion.
UMT
Dissertation Publishing
UMI 1496043
Copyright 2011 by ProQuest LLC.
All rights reserved. This edition of the work is protected against
unauthorized copying under Title 17, United States Code.
ProQuest LLC
789 East Eisenhower Parkway
P.O. Box 1346
Ann Arbor, Ml 48106-1346
Copyright by
SETH FERRANTI
2010
All Rights Reserved
This creative project is dedicated to my loving wife, Diane,
because I wouldn't have been able to do it without her.
Thank you for your continued and everlasting love and support.
IV
TABLE OF CONTENTS
PAGE
COPYRIGHT PAGE
ii
APPROVAL PAGE
in
DEDICATION
iv
TABLE OF CONTENTS
v
ABSTRACT
vi
CHAPTER
1. INTRODUCTION
1
2. AMERICA'S FASCINATION WITH OUTLAW HEROES
3
3. HIP HOP AND THE CRACK ERA
12
4. A CASE STUDY: THE SUPREME TEAM
21
5. THE SCREENPLAY EXPLORATION OF A LEGENDARY DRUG CREW
29
6. THE STREET SCRIPTS THE SCREEN AND VICE VERSA
37
7. CONCLUSION
44
WORKS CITED
45
APPENDIX: THE SUPREME TEAM SCREENPLAY
48
v
ABSTRACT
My fascination with the Supreme Team began when Don Diva Magazine asked
me to interview Kenneth "Supreme" McGriff, with whom I was serving time at Federal
Correctional Institution (FCI) Gilmer, West Virginia, in 2005.1 had been writing for the
magazine, founded in 1999 by a friend in prison, Kevin Chiles. Supreme, widely known
and infamous in New York City, agreed to face-to-face discussions. Shortly afterwards,
Supreme was indicted in what would be known as the "Murder Inc." case. A jury
convicted him of murder for hire and sentenced him to life in prison.
Since those discussions I have continued writing about black and Latino
gangsters. I sought reasons for the underground prominence of the Supreme Team, so I
conducted research into the phenomenon of outlaw heroes. I found similarities between
historical characters like Billy the Kid and Supreme, which resulted in this project and
screenplay.
1
CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION
This thesis is designed to contribute to the field of film studies, particularly
toward an understanding of the gangster film genre. My project combines a screenplay
appendix and a scholarly component to show why the screenplay—in a film studies
context—best expresses my belief that the street scripts the screen and the screen scripts
the street. The scholarly component looks at America's fascination with outlaw in
Chapter 2, hip hop and the Crack Era in Chapter 3, a case study of the Supreme Team in
Chapter 4, the screenplay exploration in Chapter 5, how the screen scripts the street and
vice versa in Chapter 6, and the conclusion in Chapter 7. As an appendix I have included
my original screenplay, The Supreme Team, based on a true story.
The core of my thesis is to discover the source of and curious fascination
Americans have for both fictional and real gangsters. My original screenplay is a
dramatic exposition of how a street gang named the Supreme Team functioned and why it
prospered in the real world and street lore. I also explore how a film about the Supreme
Team's place in hip hop culture and gangster history may appeal to a contemporary
audience. A study of The Supreme Team in the context of the gangster film genre,
ongoing from the 1930s to today's "gangsta" films, reveals how one bad guy led to
another in America's endless fascination with outlaw heroes, and it also explains how
film exploited this pop culture phenomenon. From Billy the Kid and Al Capone to
present-day criminal Pablo Escobar, and Tony Montana in Scarface, America is
2
enamored with bad guys who have become media icons. The film industry feeds off the
society's obsession with gangsters. This thesis and screenplay examine and analyze the
impact gangsters had on America's contemporary culture.
3
CHAPTER 2
AMERICA'S FASCINATION WITH OUTLAW HEROES
Since the time of the Old West, Americans have been fascinated by outlaw
heroes. Paul Kooistra, in Criminals as Heroes, believes this is due to the classic Robin
Hood myth. He notes, "These robbers and murderers were viewed as social heroes; not
just during their lifetime but for decades afterward. These are lawbreakers who have been
transformed from ordinary criminals into legendary Robin Hood figures of epic
proportions" (Kooistra 7). Although not an American invention, the glorification and
romanticism of criminals has become an American trait. "Historically, American culture
and folklore have eulogized heroic killers," Lewis Yablonsky writes in Gangsters (25).
From Billy the Kid and Jesse James to Al Capone to Pablo Escobar, an iconic torch has
been passed on as Americans continually search for and discover the next bad guy to
regard as a hero. In a never ending cycle, outlaws have been turned into cultural heroes,
ranging from the Western Era to the present. In fact, modern outlaw heroes are an
extension of Old West counterparts. In Bullets Over Hollywood, John McCarty states,
"Many of history's most notorious gangsters were also outlaws in the traditional Old
West meaning of the term. They were descendants in spirit if not actual blood from Old
West forebears like Jesse James and Billy the Kid" (7).
Anti-hero gangsters are not bound by law; they are a law unto themselves and
embody the American ideal of freedom. Kooistra suggests why: It is because the criminal
4
is a lawbreaker that we make a hero out of him. He is a man who refuses to bow down to
the tyranny of authority, and that is why we glorify him (9).
In Contemporary African American Cinema, Sheril D. Antonio expounds further,
stating, "The gangster hero is a masculine overachiever who triumphs in a criminal
context where success is dependent upon nerve, quick wittedness, and brute force" (28).
Venerating criminals as popular folk heroes has become an identifying and undeniable
American trait. Nicole Rafter writes in Shots in the Mirror (206), "They are Robin Hoods
who steal only from the rich. They are Davids fighting the Goliath of the laws who
pursue them" (206), suggesting that gangsters are underdogs who take on the big, bad
American government.
Hollywood has long celebrated gangster heroes as icons. Their refusal to conform
to authority has endeared them to the masses. Kooistra says, "They have been popular
media creatures whose criminal exploits have been celebrated in song, newspapers,
books, plays, movies, and even television drama" (7). It has been a gradual evolution
from Old West outlaws to modern day gangsters. As America urbanized and
industrialized, so did her outlaw heroes. In Gangsters, Lewis Yablonsky explains:
In the Old West, Jesse James and Billy the Kid, and others became
idolized killers. In the Roaring Twenties, Al Capone, who was responsible
for ordering the murder of at least a hundred men and killing some of them
himself, became for many American citizens a popular and admired public
figure. John Dillinger and Bonnie and Clyde became the gangster icons of
the 1930s. In more recent years, Benny 'Bugsy' Siegel, Sam Giancana,
5
and various other Mafiosi have became venerated gangsters to many
people in books and films (25).
Gangster outlaws have become icons whose aura transcends their reality largely
because of newspapers, magazines, and movies. They have taken on mythical
characteristics that define their legends and make them as famous today as in their
heyday. Like Robin Hood, their legends lived long past their respective eras. Myths, the
fundamental notions that people hold as truth, have molded and sustained the gangster
hero's legend. Through print media and film, which have "the organizational apparatus
necessary for the production and dissemination of heroic criminals to large and diverse
audiences" (Kooistra 178), the glorification of these icons has become commonplace and
almost mandatory, as both media and film industries constantly search for outlaw heroes
to celebrate and make into celebrities. Legend and truth intertwine to give credence to the
gangster hero myth, catapulting exploits into exaggerated proportions, and America has
become a willing audience.
The gangster, a modern day outlaw for the masses, emerged from Old Western
gunslingers. Paul Kooistra theorizes the demise of the gunslinger: "In their place arose a
new breed of heroic criminal: the gangster. This rogue made the use of the auto rather
than the horse, the machine gun instead of the Colt .45, and often lived in the urban
jungle rather than the wide open prairie" (119).
The evolution of the gangster was gradual. As America changed, so did its
definition of the outlaw hero, brought on by the same longing for a hero existing since
Robin Hood times. Only identity has changed in that regard; society needs someone to pit
6
against authority and to resist the forces of law and order. The counter-authority figure
has been replicated in more modern times, as the model outlaw hero went from
"gangster" to "gangsta." The new outlaw recalled the Old Western gunslingers in
analogies and characteristics, as the old outlaw retained his impact on popular culture.
Antonio remarks, "Menace II Society, like Boyz N The Hood, features young black men
growing up in the American west, in neighborhoods that can be called modern day
frontiers" (86). As the era of his construction evolves and changes, the outlaw hero
remains the same in spirit.
The public has greatly invested in the gangster hero myth and has made it part of
society through Hollywood and purveyors of the popular media. In Cultural Criminology
and the Carnival of Crime, Mike Presdee explains:
For crime to come into being and to enter the realm of popular
consciousness there must exist a tentative arrangement between criminal,
police, media, and the public on the criminal process. In this way the
police, the public and the media are as much a part of the process of crime
as the person identified and defined as the criminal (36).
In other words, we as a society—as Americans—are complicit in maintaining the
iconic status of gangster heroes; we look for them, we find them, and we elevate them to
a mythical and legendary status. We are responsible. In print media and film, we
recognize, identify, and admire these outlaws, and our consumption drives the
propaganda. We perpetuate the legends and myths. Our need fuels their spread and
7
exploitation. It is our romanticism and glorification that lead to their media representation
and exploitation.
As a whole, mainstream society exhibits an acute taste for violence in
entertainment as evidenced by the fact that books, magazines, movies, and television
programs about violence are everywhere at hand, which Jeff Ferrell, Keith Hayward, and
Jock Young note in their book, Cultural Criminology (22). As the evolution of gunslinger
to gangster progressed in popular culture, this progression followed in film. As times
changed, so did the characteristics of the outlaw hero, and the gangster movie became
heir apparent to the Western. John McCarty claims, "The gangster, like his forebear in
American history and culture, the gunslinger, is a classic character—and the gangster
movie, like the Western, one of the American cinema's staple film genres" (1). From
1930s classics Scarface, Little Caesar and The Public Enemy, until more recent fare such
as Bonnie and Clyde and The Godfather, gangster films have become a popular and
profitable American tradition. As violence underlies both genres, profitability was
assured. The violence of the outlaw hero connected gangster films to the western in
several ways, as "gunplay and the violent struggle for power and territory are the
thematic linchpins that hold both together" (McCarty 2).
The gangster hero takes his place in the pantheon of American culture and
folklore in film and society as Fran Mason notes in American Gangster Cinema:
The American film gangster is an iconic figure of the industrial Twentieth
century in both its modern and post modern forms, representing a culture
of mobility, urban space, excess and individual license. One of the iconic
8
images of the gangster genre is of a sharply dressed gangster holding a
gun appearing out of the shadows with himself either silhouetted against
the wall or throwing a shadow forward (2).
Since Hollywood introduced the iconography, narrative, and ideologies of the gangster
film, the genre has become juxtaposed with society's criminal underworld to the degree
that it is hard to distinguish between reality and fiction, particularly as the gangster is
known as both hero and villain. Ken Tucker writes in Scarface Nation, "Gangsters the
world over have long looked up to Tony Montana, the fictional Cuban drug dealer in the
1983 film Scarface who dies in a hail of bullets in his kitschy, neo-classical Miami villa"
(16). In today's society, when it comes to gangster hero icons, it is hard to distinguish the
line between art imitating life and life imitating art. Gangsters are often celebrated as
Hollywood icons, immortalized and profitably marketed. The merging of the cinematic
gunslinger, outlaw, gangster, and criminal has created a cultural mishmash which has
infected print, film, and music media. Entertainment and crime have collided, leaving
society to question the line between reality and fiction.
When the critic, Robert Warshow, in his 1948 essay, The Gangster as Tragic
Hero, wrote of a scene in the 1932 Scarface, "We know he is successful because he has
just given a party of opulent proportions," he could have been describing the visual
motifs of hundreds of gangsta rap videos featuring parties inside and outside Brian
DePalma's Scarface mansions, with champagne flowing and models in bikinis slinking
around the vocalists (Tucker 121). Warshow's seminal essay applies to gangster heroes
as much today as in 1948 and gives credence to the evolution of the "gangster to gangsta"
9
notion in the film world and in the wider criminal society. Nicole Rafter gives
Warshow's reasoning:
Like the gangster, Warshow explains, we are all under pressure to
succeed, even while we know that our efforts will be undone by death.
The effect of the gangster film is to embody this dilemma in the person of
the gangster and resolve it by his death, not ours (201).
The gangster film was inspired by life and represents that lifestyle with the traditional
motifs and narratives Hollywood has found to be successful; if the effect is life imitating
art, so be it. DePalma achieved this with his Scarface remake. Ken Tucker goes on to say,
"In this case, white filmmakers who fashioned an old property into a new melodrama set
in Hispanic culture ended up inspiring devotion among diverse minority groups as well as
millions of white adolescent and adults" (121). In essence, Scarface became popular
culture, and by doing so greatly influenced hip hop and the "gangster to gangsta"
movement.
Sinister, swaggering, yet often sympathetic, the gangster figure has stolen and
murdered his way into the hearts of American cinema audiences, Lee Grieveson, Ester
Sonnett and Peter Stanfield noted in Mob Culture (43). Jonathan Munby says it better in
Public Enemies, Public Heroes: "As Robert Warshow has articulated, gangsters express
'that part of the American psyche which rejects the qualities and the demands of modern
life, which rejects Americanism itself" (3).
Law and order is the American way, but gangsters and their ilk are its antithesis.
They challenge authority, the proper order and the preservation of American freedom and
10
individualism. In our relentless search for the Robin Hood myth and our next outlaw
hero, we have turned the gangster into the gangsta, much as we merged the gunslinger
into the gangster. Yablonsky writes, "In a subtle way, through movies and news reports,
the Vito Genoveses, Lucky Lucianos, Bugsy Siegels, Meyer Lanskys and Frank Costellos
that emerged in those day became the role models for today's gangster" (31). The merger
blurred between the reality of a life in crime and fictional characters inspired by "reality"
in film. Criminals became celebrities and hobnobbed with actors who portrayed them on
screen.
In Made Men, Greg B. Smith uses John Gotti as an example:
Gotti was seen in some circles as an anti hero, a guy who thumbed his
nose at law enforcement while impressing the working people with old
fashioned fireworks displays every Fourth of July in his Queens
neighborhood. Even Gotti believed it. He talked about "my public" as if he
were George Raft or Paul Muni or Robert Deniro. Here was the myth of
the crime boss as Robin Hood. Here was The Godfather of Mario Puzo,
who had somehow managed to create the men of honor fiction (55).
In a revealing anecdote Smith relates how infamous mobster Crazy Joe Gallo perfected
his Mafia swagger and passed it on to a Hollywood actor:
Joey Gallo spent hours watching old gangster movies of Paul Muni, James
Cagney and Edward G. Robinson, and learned to imitate their body
language. Years later, a Hollywood actor would come to Brooklyn to meet
with Joey, who would let the clueless thespian in on how to walk and talk
11
like a real gangster, without revealing that he himself was a sucker for
movies (101).
It was a classic case of art imitating life imitating art. This is the historical perspective
that allows us to move into the present. Gunslingers to gangsters to gangstas completes
the transformation, just as entertainment evolved from print media to film to rap video.
Thus, from Billy the Kid to Al Capone to the Supreme Team, a modern day drug crew
was lionized in literature and verse.
12
CHAPTER 3
HIP HOP AND THE CRACK ERA
In the 1980s and 1990s, as the gangster became the gangsta, several factors
proved pivotal in the evolution of the outlaw hero. In the streets of New York City a
number of conditions, most importantly hip hop and crack cocaine, contributed to the rise
of the Supreme Team, a drug crew operating out of Jamaica, Queens. Barry Michael
Cooper, the screenwriter of New Jack City, a movie said to be based on the Supreme
Team, says in a Stop Smiling interview how crack cocaine is viewed:
Crack is a hip hop drug. Because even people who weren't getting high off
crack felt the cultural effect it brought. That drug changed hip hop. This is
gonna sound freaky, but crack made hip hop corporate, because the guys
who emulated the crack dealers became rap stars. They wanted to be tough
like them and wanted to floss. Crack made hip hop very corporate. It took
it beyond break dancing, graffiti and the South Bronx. The stories that
Biggie told, that Jigga told, that Easy-E told, all of them guys came out of
the crack culture. It really had a profound change on the culture (Gonzales
44).
When hip hop started in the mid 1980s, New York's rappers admired the street guys.
While the rappers had nothing—no props, status, reputations, money, women,
materialistic things, or bling—the street hustlers did. They were the ones wearing the
clothes, and jewelry. They were the ones that the ghetto community respected. This
13
juxtaposition of a burgeoning hip hop community and the crack culture that took over the
city's criminal underworld spawned crews like the Supreme Team who ruled the streets
of Queens through violence, reputation, and bravado, but also with style, class, and
swagger. They were the princes of the ghetto, embracing the hood mentality and ghettofabulous lifestyle. They were lords of the south side of Jamaica, Queens and, accordingly,
were treated as ghetto royalty.
Many young black men and inner city youths pride themselves on living a thug's
life. They model themselves after successful local drug dealers and rap artists like Tupac
Shakur and Snoop Doggy Dog, Elijah Anderson writes in Code of the Street (36). At the
time the conditions and environment of Queens, ground zero for hip hop and home to
many Colombians who had settled in the Washington Heights area (another section of
Queens), proved pivotal in the formation and success of drug crews like the Supreme
Team. Rufus Schatzberg and Robert J. Kelly explain in African American Organized
Crime:
The enormous influx of cocaine from Latin America gave rise to the crack
trade that dramatically transformed ghetto street gangs into drug
trafficking organizations. Crack cocaine has spawned competing criminal
groups in the African American communities to such an extent that many
areas are nothing more than war zones in which lethal turf wars and drive
by shootings take many gang members' and innocent bystanders' lives
(10).
14
Violence was a generic by-product of the Supreme Team's drug dealing activities, and
violence transferred to hip hop. As street styles influenced the burgeoning hip hop scene,
a new breed of gangster materialized, morphing the outlaw hero into a new form, the
gangsta. With the arrival of a young, usually black or Hispanic male, prone to violence,
inner city culture changed dramatically. This formation was two pronged: hip hop and
crack came together to forge a new persona epitomized by the Supreme Team.
Hip hop and rap culture comes to life in the rough areas where most people dare
not go. Here is where gangstas aim to be street wise, to survive with dignity and respect
amongst their own without selling out. In the roll call of rap stars, their names and song
titles reflect not only their clashes with the law, but also the violence involved in living a
life of struggle and the maleness of the culture (Presdee 131). Hip hop comes from the
street and was born at the same time that crack exploded in the neighborhoods of New
York City. The Supreme Team, with hip hop swagger and flamboyance, was born in the
middle of the explosion, endowed with violent tendencies and a nature necessary to
succeed in the brutal crack trade. Yablonsky describes the mentality: "The desire for a
rep, the increased lethal nature of gangster violence, and the advent of the dealing and use
of crack cocaine has changed the structure and behavior of contemporary youth gangs"
(15).
The Supreme Team straddled the scene with a brazen, bold, and brutal finality
that jived well with hip hop's blunt, forcefulness; its objective was to get money,
blatantly and violently, with no regard for the law or powers that be.
15
The violence demonstrates the closeness that the stars of rap and hip hop have
with the community from which they came. In a sense, they are still part of the struggle
for both survival and the maintenance of whatever success they have achieved. It is a
precarious position for all young people from those communities where nothingness
waits just around the corner, where acceptance and success are transient and culturally
ephemeral, disappearing as quickly as they arrive (Presdee 132). On the precipice was the
Supreme Team, balanced between hip hop and the crack trade, immune to the violence
but afflicted by it, respected alike by rappers and the streets, subject to precepts of the
criminal underworld but also self absorbed in a widening hip hop culture, ready to inflict
whatever force was necessary to maintain its stranglehold on the crack trade, but also
willing (and able) to stunt and shine, thus to embellish its reputation and street creds. It
was a fine line to walk, still they walked it into legendary status, securing their crown in
the hierarchy of New York City's drug trade and in the annals of gangsta lore.
Nelson George claims in Hip Hop America, "The crack industry became able
employers of teenagers, filling the economic vacuum created by the ongoing loss of
working class jobs to the suburbs and then to poor Third World countries. Teenagers and
adolescents were zealously recruited to provide the unskilled labor needed for
manufacturing, packaging, and selling illegal drugs" (40). Schatzburg and Kelly go
deeper to relate the effects crack had on inner city neighborhoods:
From its introduction, crack became a mass-market drug, and its
consumption was concentrated in poor urban neighborhoods, where its
intense, pleasurable high provided a quick respite from the bleakness of
16
the surroundings. Because crack lived up to its reputation as particularly
enjoyable, many users found themselves completely immersed in it (161).
Just as the sellers, the users became addicted to the lifestyle that hip hop popularized with
money, power, and respect demanded of the streets. As users became crack heads,
addicted to the drug, so did the Supreme Team become addicted to its lifestyle. That
lifestyle, in turn, became popular culture as hip hop exploded nationally, turning the
gangsta into the new outlaw hero, a natural extension from gunslingers and 1930s era
gangsters. The transition was cinematic with no regard for race, ethnicity, or economic
background.
The environment out of which the Supreme Team emerged echoes that of the Old
West and New York's prohibition era. The conditions duplicated the social aspects of the
phenomenon. Schatzburg and Kelly note, "Shootouts occur daily, the streets rocking with
gunfire, crack created a new breed of urban criminals, who are members of a fierce army
that leaves the police badly outgunned and outnumbered" (163). Violence was essential
to maintain territory and the vice grip needed to sustain the crack trade's money making
efforts. Hip hop reflected the lives, histories, culture, and legends of those who, like the
Supreme Team, actually lived, thrived, and prospered in the concrete jungles of urban
lore. Like George states, "They embraced the evil of crack America and articulated it
with style" (48). In the ghetto the gangster defines success. He is the modern-day Robin
Hood, the gangster hero Hollywood immortalized. The combination of the drug crews
and hip hop, the socio-economic conditions and ghetto environment, and the violence and
17
the swagger symbolized by the Supreme Team cannot be denied. Emotionally, they did
for the black community what the mafia did for many Italians.
Anderson mentions, "Young men involved in the drug trade often apply the
ideology glorified in rap music to the problem of making a living and survival in what
has become an oppositional if not an outlaw culture" (107). It spins full circle, art
imitating life imitating art as the screen scripts the street and vice versa. Although hip hop
and crack were the two most vital factors in the formation of the Supreme Team, other
earlier factors set the stage for their eventual ascension. Elijah Anderson explains the
attraction of the drug trade for inner city youth:
The attraction of the violence-prone drug trade thus results from a
combination of inadequate opportunity in the regular economy, on the one
hand, and the imperatives of street life, on the other. The interplay
between these two factors is powerfully at work in the social organization
of the underground economy in inner city neighborhoods (113).
Young black and Hispanic members of the Supreme Team turned to crime as they had no
other legitimate opportunities to better themselves. The hip and trendy career path in the
ghetto was an easy choice. Conditions in the ghettos of Queens contributed to this
formation of the criminal drug crew. In the mid 1980s, Queens was an incubator for the
crew's formation and for the legend that followed. Francis A. J. Ianni writes in Black
Mafia, "The successful gangster, like the successful politician, was seen as a model who
demonstrated to the masses of lower class co-ethics that anyone could achieve success
and power in the greater society" (90). Children in the street looked up to drug dealers
18
with their flashy clothes and cars and choose the life of crime as a viable escape from the
ghetto. Disenfranchised and economically inferior, the youth gravitated to fast and easy
rewards promised by the street life. When successful, drug crews like the Supreme Team
rose above their contemporaries and were given iconic status in the streets and hip hop
circles. The entire time period could be described as an era of it's own, the Crack Era.
Whenever large numbers of people become disenchanted with the quality of
justice represented by law and politics, Robin Hood criminals inevitably appear. Popular
unrest does not occur randomly, but instead is the consequence of specific social
conditions, such as famines, rapid social change, blatant and excessive political
corruption, economic depressions, or other societal strains that disrupt the day-to-day
existence of people unaccustomed to worrying about basic needs. Heroic criminals may
appear under these conditions (Kooistra 10). The crack epidemic and the War on Drugs,
two major institutions in the 1980s, acted as that strain, disrupting normal life and
allowed the Supreme Team legend to be created and flourish in Queens. Hip hop culture
became their muse, as it perpetrated and romanticized the myth by glorifying the
Supreme Team's exploits in song and verse. Their mythology was expanded nationally
through music, culture, and rap videos. An ideal market for symbols of justice outside the
law exists when whole communities feel that the system takes advantage of them and
declares war on them, which results in racism, poverty, and economic sanctions (Kooistra
38); thus, the Robin Hood mythology enabled the Supreme Team to attain a mythical
quality.
19
Schatzberg and Kelly claim, "Unlike the Italian Cosa Nostra with its obsessive
concern for omerta (code of silence), which does not countenance human frailties and its
high sophisticated methods of corruption, African American mobs have primarily one
method by which to enforce silence—violence" (131). The Supreme Team was known
for violence and an overall swagger. In the vicious crack trade they ruled supreme,
outclassing and outgunning their rivals. Yablonsky says, "The contemporary violent gang
problem is entwined with the business of drugs, which involve drive-by murders using
high powered, lethal automatic weapons and has resulted in extreme violence" (28).
Violence, racism, and poverty are just some of the factors besides crack cocaine and hip
hop that spawned the Supreme Team. In a brutal world they made their own rules and
opportunities, taking what they wanted when they wanted.
Two important contributing factors to this scene were Brian De Palma's movie,
Scarface, and the 1980s insertion of ghetto residents into America's capitalist culture.
The Supreme Team was representative of the gangster culture that Scarface helped plant
in our collective mind (Tucker 27). Scarface had a big impact on both the hip hop
community and the crack trade. It established a mind frame for "wanna be" drug dealers:
gangsters are bad, but people still love villains. The message came through that it was
sexy and cool to be the tragic hero dying in a blaze of glory. Hip hop embraced this ethos
and the movie, adopting the style, philosophies, and views promoted by the film. By any
means necessary, hip hop got money and respect, invoking the Scarface mentality. In hip
hop songs and in television programs like The Wire, there is a lot of talk about being a
soldier and transferring militancy onto the drug crews. The Scarface mentality of coming
from nothing and gaining control was embraced by the Supreme Team and hip hop. The
Supreme Team became a black militant criminal empire: soldiers for a cause in the hip
hop army.
A factor that proved pivotal in the formation of the Supreme Team was hip hop's
immersion into the luxuries of American life. Jeff Ferrell, Keith Hayward, and Jock
Young explain hip hop's adoption of capitalist views:
Here is full immersion in mainstream American culture: a world
worshipping money and success, hooked on Gucci, BMW, and Nike; a
population watching television eleven hours a day, sharing mainstream
culture's obsession with violence, lining up outside the cinemas, even
embracing in some ways the racism of the wider society. The problem of
the ghetto is not simple exclusion; rather, it is deep cultural inclusion
confronting systematic exclusion from cultural and economic realization.
It is a situation where inclusion and exclusion occur concurrently—a
bulimic world where massive cultural inclusion is accompanied by
systematic structural exclusion (63).
Excited by and envious of hustlers who prowled the ghetto in their expensive cars and
fancy clothes (Ianni 14), the youth who went on to form the Supreme Team during the
Crack Era and hip hop's rise to national prominence were motivated by the most banal
desires, pursuing the American dream on a purely economic and entrepreneurial level. In
essence the Supreme Team was what the Hughes brothers called in Menace II Society,
"America's nightmare—young, black, and don't give a fuck" (Kitwana 131).
21
CHAPTER 4
A CASE STUDY: THE SUPREME TEAM
The Supreme Team is a contemporary criminal drug crew immortalized in
literature and verse. For decades its legend has reverberated in the streets and in the hip
hop community. Like the mafia, it has become part of popular culture, and the next
logical step to validate its mythology would be for the story of the Supreme Team to
become glorified in a movie. Yablonsky writes, "In terms of the mafia model, [original
gangsters] are men of respect, the John Gotti's of the violent gang" (25). The Supreme
Team members were original gangsters of their era comprised of men of respect and
honor. Like John Gotti and the mob, their legend flourished despite their detractors—
mainly law enforcement agencies and print media. Through hip hop and the culture it
spawned, the Supreme Team has become infamous, synonymous with gangsta rap and
the images its music produces and promotes. One of the more notorious crews from a
deadly era, the Supreme Team towers above its contemporaries in stature, notoriety, and
infamy. They reigned as kings in the crack trade.
The Supreme Team was a crew organized in the early 1980s in the vicinity of
Baisley Park Houses in the Queens, New York, neighborhood, Jamaica. It was started by
a group of teenagers, members of a quasi-religious sect known as the Five Percenters.
Under the leadership of Kenneth "Supreme" McGriff and Gerald "Prince" Miller,
Supreme's nephew and second in command, the gang concentrated its criminal efforts on
the wide-spread distribution of crack cocaine. At their peak in 1987, the Supreme Team's
22
receipts exceeded $200,000 a day, and the gang regularly committed acts of violence and
murder to maintain its stronghold on the area's drug trade. The Supreme Team's
narcotics operations employed dozens, including layers of drug sellers that insulated the
gang's leaders from street-level activities. Team members communicated in coded
language and numerical systems derived from the "Five Percenter Supreme Alphabet and
Mathematics." In street parlance, "they dropped science and jewels, holding ciphers and
copping knowledge." Their world was of their own creation, derived from "Five
Percenter" rhetoric and imagery and serving a full-fledged crack distribution. To further
thwart law enforcement efforts, Supreme and Prince employed armed bodyguards and a
security force, as well as deployed lookouts with two-way radios on the Baisley Park
Houses rooftops.
The Supreme Team numbered more than two hundred and was said to rival the
mafia in structure. The cauldron of the mid 1980s drug wars forged a legend layered in
mystique and street lore. The Supreme Team has been glorified for both their criminal
exploits and the culture of which they were a part. Due to hip hop's prominence and the
popularity of gangsta rap, they helped create what became national in scope. Under the
red brick towers of the Baisley projects and around the clock, the crack cocaine trade
operated more like a corporation than a drug outfit, and prospered by selling twenty-five
thousand crack vials a week. They embodied the black gangsta image exploited by both
Hollywood and the media, but the Supreme Team ultimately collapsed, mainly because
of criminal wrongdoings. In hip hop the Supreme Team is idolized as the ultimate
23
example of gangstas, and its stature—bolstered by their deeds—has led rappers like Nas,
50 Cent, and Ja Rule to pay homage in verse.
Nas began it with 1994's Illmatic where he rhymed, "Some fiends scream
Supreme Team / a Jamaica, Queens thing." 50 Cent and Ja Rule were next to mention
The Supreme Team in verse. On 2000's Ghetto Qua ran, 50 Cent rapped, "When you
hear talk of the Southside / you hear talk of the team / see niggas feared Prince and
respected Preme / for all you slow muthafuckas I'm gonna break it down iller / see
'Preme was the businessman and Prince was the killer." Ja Rule rapped on the intro to
Survival of the Illest, "Backed by my 'Preme Team / crime representatives." These are
among the noteworthy and more celebrated rappers who lionized the team in verse. Their
style, swagger, attitude and mentality have all been adopted by hip hop. The connection
between the Supreme Team and gangsta rap runs deep.
Nelson George writes, "Gangsta rap is a direct byproduct of the crack explosion"
(42). As the Supreme Team was the preeminent crew of the crack era, their legend,
attitude, and actions directly inspired gangsta rap, just as gangsta rap's popularity
cemented the Supreme Team into legend. Schatzberg and Kelly explain:
Gangsta rap reflects elements of the black community as a whole with an
emphasis on the subculture of gangs. It reflects the morals and ideals of
black gang culture. It is a record of the thoughts, desires, emotions and
actions of a select group of people coping with the realities of their
existence (253).
Gangsta rap is a clear example of how pervasively and dangerously illegal behavior may
become a sales bonanza in the hands of corporate marketers explicitly because of its
illicit appeal.
Americans are directly invested in the images of their outlaw heroes. The heroic
criminal is a cultural product symbolically certified by his courage, loyalty, cleverness
and success. Cultural posits suggest that we turn criminals into heroes by linking them
with cherished ideals; much in the way advertising campaigns connect products to
popular images (Kooistra 10). The Supreme Team reminds us of the Robin Hood myth,
but rappers contributed greatly to the legend. Kooistra identifies the process:
The outlaw of legend and literature is a social product constructed by the
media and the popular imagination. Tales about such a criminal tell us
what people want to believe about him and not necessarily what he did
and why. The Robin Hood criminals disobey the law, still, they are
faithful to a higher moral duty (36).
The Supreme Team was known for giving back to its community by funding turkey
giveaways, sponsoring basketball tournaments, taking children to amusement parks,
paying residents' bills, and giving away money. They showed love to their neighborhood
and were embraced and romanticized because of that. Anderson claims, "There are Robin
Hood types among the drug dealers, who distribute some of their profits in the
community, buying things for people, financially helping out their friends and relatives as
well as strangers" (21). Anderson further notes how the drug crew becomes accepted in
the neighborhood as "the Robin Hood phenomenon helps the justification process" (132).
25
When rappers idolized and made icons of the Supreme Team, and the people
accepted their goodwill, the community looked past their misdeeds and embraced them.
The glamour the hip hop world gives the Supreme Team in music and rap videos
romanticizes and transcends their crimes as it projects images of their grandiosity to the
world.
Grieveson, Sonnet and Stanfield note, "As gangstas—as black popular culture
producers- they have recognized that being a gangster is at once the American way—
albeit from the dark side" (277). As film has influenced mainstream America, so has the
rap video influenced hip hop. Nelson George outlines the reasons:
Of everything that has affected the evolution of hip hop—crime cash,
corporations, crack, sampling, violence—nothing is more important than
the music video. Through its images, the attitudes and obsessions of urban
America have been broadcast around the world, igniting fascination and
fear, indignation and imitation, in the minds of youth on the outside of the
globe from America's urban streets (97).
Magazines such as Don Diva and Feds, gangsta rap, and DVD documentaries sprang up
around the Supreme Team, profiling the litany of black gangsters and the chronicles of
street lore. As with the mafia, black gangsters are held up as outlaw heroes.
When the media enter the realm of crime, the commodification process is at work, which
is driven by the dynamics of the communications marketplace. Consumption and
communication come together to form the engine room of civilization (Presdee 26). It is
the old maxim of Hollywood style for art to imitate life imitating art; it is a vicious circle
26
of outlaws and gangsters, each character as honorable as its predecessor in the same
fictional, romantic way. As the mob was ruined by its own mythology, so too was the
Supreme Team. Using the Gotti example, Greg B. Smith says: "With Gotti, there was
practically a cottage industry between the movies and books and talk show discussions.
His image as a boastful, well-dressed hoodlum catered to the notion that the mob was a
glamorous American institution" (17).
In the same way, hip hop embraced and lionized the Supreme Team and made
them an American institution. They are represented as "tragic figures trapped in an urban
nightmare, but also as mythic and archetypical figures living out of their time" (Mason
28). The Supreme Team became the epitome of the new gangsta hero, rising from
America's streets and ghettos to become lords of their domain as their mythical
reputation, via hip hop, seeped into society's consciousness. Grieveson, Sonnet, and
Stanfield explain this evolution:
In the new black ghettos imagined by Hollywood, the detective, drug
dealers, pimp, and gangster pit their knowledge and experience of the
streets against an old order for who the city is no longer readable. The
wrestling of the control of the streets from the mafia represents
empowerment for the black heroes (29).
The Supreme Team's story is ripe for a movie. With the advent of the gangsta,
Hollywood is following rap's lead; the next logical progression in the gang's claim to
fame is a screenplay.
27
Nicole Rafter states, "The Godfather reinstated the gangster saga, not only in
Hollywood but also in America's mythic imagination" (100). A litany of movies like
Goodfellas, Casino, Donnie Brasco, Pulp Fiction, New Jack City, Set it Off and Belly
continue the trend. Rafter continues, "With the advent of movies with all black or mostly
black casts, African Americans gained access to the culturally valuable image of the
outlaw hero" (195). With their alpha males, Supreme and Prince, their grandiose
monikers, larger than life personas and hip hop swagger, the Supreme Team embodies
the New Age gangsta hero, all juxtaposed to form the young, black, intelligent, cunning,
successful, and wealthy drug lord of modern times.
The selling point for any Hollywood story is violence, and the Supreme Team
delivers: Prince is serving seven life sentences for violent acts of murder, and Supreme is
serving life for murder for hire. Anderson says, "Since the code of the streets is
sanctioned primarily by violence and the threat of violent retribution, the more inner city
youth choose this route in life, the more normative the code of the street becomes in the
neighborhood" (134). Violence breeds a hierarchy on the street, which the Supreme Team
regulated by using precise and selective brutality. Yablonsky describes this process,
as"Atrocious violence is one way of putting in work and rising in the hierarchy of the
contemporary gang" (10). Selwyn Rabb recognized the coming of the gangsta with his
New York Times article, "A New Breed of Criminal," which could have been speaking
directly of the Supreme Team:
They are a new breed of criminal in New York City: young members of
crack peddling gangs who murder on a whim. And though police officers
28
say they are confident the gangs can be uprooted by methods they have
worked before, other law enforcement experts and social scientists are less
optimistic.
In reality, the violence is extreme, but it fits into Hollywood's style; there is
nothing like a good gangster movie with shootouts, car chases, and opulence galore. As
the lines blur between reality and fiction, a movie based on the Supreme Team can
resemble Scarface. Antonio warns, "For some audiences, although cautioned against the
lure of the gangster lifestyle as the media depicts it, the line between the films message
and its portrayal of violence can be easily blurred" (Antonio 86). A Supreme Team film
could be so real, it is scary.
CHAPTER 5
A SCREENPLAY EXPLORATION OF A LEGENDARY DRUG CREW
Aristotle once proclaimed that poetic art was one big imitation of life. Although
Aristotle was not much of a movie goer, the poetic art he described easily includes film
(Autier 56). Like Quentin Tarantino, I intend to use every available Hollywood cliche in
the creation of my screenplay, The Supreme Team, and this chapter explores my reasons
for writing it. Elijah Anderson states: Television images portray and even glamorize the
fast life and movies, such as The Godfather, Set it Off, Boys N the Hood, and Menace II
Society, that feature gratuitous violence, and help legitimize violence for many young
men. Such films have a certain realism and deal with the complex problems that emerge
everyday on the ghetto streets (135). My screenplay emulates these aspects of realism and
clearly falls in the gangster film genre. Yablonsky outlines the process:
In socio-economically depressed ghettos and barrios of most American
cities, violent gangs (like the Supreme Team) are perceived by civicminded people and law enforcement leaders as a cancer that must be
eliminated from their community. At the same time, in contrast to this
viewpoint, there is in mass a varied audience for the glorification of
gangster violence in film, song, and verse in the larger society. These
diverse viewpoints reveal how the gangster image is both denounced and
romanticized in contemporary American society (25).
30
My screenplay exploits this audience attitude that Yablonsky describes. For
readers to understand what my screenplay represents, I must first touch on the history of
the gangster film genre.
In Public Enemies, Public Heroes, Jonathan Munby writes, "The black gangsta
films of today draw on the power of the 1930's classic prototypes," (3). Gangsters
originally appeared when America became an industrial and urban nation. With the
progression of film, gangster movies were made to replace the Western in popularity.
McCarty notes that "the gangster film is not simply an offshoot of the Western. It is the
heir to it in our popular culture" (2). When the Western waned, the gangster films filled
the void with classic Hollywood movies such as Scarface, Little Caesar, and Public
Enemy. They set a trend, invoked the tone, and established the genre as an American
institution and the gangster hero as an American icon. McCarty describes the main
themes of gangsters:
The anti-hero mobster with a personal code of honor, the gaudy
atmosphere of nightclubs and speakeasies, secret hideouts, gang rivalries,
speeding roadsters and pursuing cops, the requisite flapper heroine who
has a code and who typically forsakes her hoodlum sugar daddy for the
upright and decent hero (65).
They formed the gangster movie conventions, and I utilize the classic rise and fall
narrative in my screenplay.
Grieveson, Sonnet and Stanfield say, "A rise and fall narrative of a
disenfranchised male, located in the city, whose modernity is signified through
31
consumption of clothes, cars, apartments, and nightclubs, the gangsters illegitimate
pursuit of wealth and success through violence parallels the goals of the American Dream
but subverts the normal avenues of its achievement" (2). Little Caesar, Scarface, and
Public Enemy are all structured around a rise and fall motif. They represent the classic
foundation for the gangster film genre and form the persona of the romanticized gangster
hero who emerged from the gunslinger's shadow. Munby elaborates further stating, "The
mythology of capitalist opportunity and success is given a distinctly public marking in
Scarface in the form of a travel company's neon billboard towering above the urban
landscape that announces 'The World Is Yours'" (56). The same theme was used in Brian
DePalma's remake of Scarface remake and has been adopted as the prevailing mentality
for hip hop and gangsta rap.
Today, black gangsta films emulate 1930s gangster flicks in story, plot, and
theme. The classic gangster movies are prototypes on which my script heavily relies, just
as characters in today's gangsta movies draw on classic gangster cinema. John McCarty
claims:
The murderously covetous Edward G. Robinson (Rico in Little Caesar) is
as different from the psychopathic gangster hooked on violence,
personified by James Cagney (Tommy Powers in Public Enemy) as Paul
Muni's doomed loner (Tony in Scarface). To some degree, every movie
and TV crook, gangster or public enemy played by anybody ever since, is
a variation to some degree of one of the gangland types immortalized by
these influential kings of the cinematic underworld (6).
32
In their greed and brazenness, these characters are bigger than life and do whatever is
necessary to obtain what they want. This is the same attitude embodied in the Supreme
Team and hip hop, ideals I have incorporated into my screenplay.
The 1983 version of Scarface is the godfather of all drug movies. Themes of
money, power, and respect have become an iconic brand in hip hop and in the streets in
which the Supreme Team arose. My script often references the movie and pays homage
to it, as its characters wax poetically of their Scarface moments. The Godfather is another
film that begs mention in the pantheon of gangster greats, and it also impacts my script.
Fran Mason explains the reasons why this movie resonates so strongly:
The Godfather has entered popular culture in a way that no other gangster
movie has managed to the extent that the film no longer exists simply as a
screen text but as part of popular consciousness. This entry into popular
culture shows that the mafia is both exotic and familiar, part of legitimate
society but also a cultural enclave within it that both repels and attracts
(130).
Like The Godfather, the Supreme Team also repels and attracts. In their neighborhood
they are loved and revered, but in law enforcement circles they are despised. I explore
this dichotomy in my screenplay.
George claims that, "No 80s film had a bigger ripple effect on hip hop [and The
Supreme Team] than Brian De Palma's 1983 Scarface" (107). The phrase "the world is
yours" from the original 1930 Paul Muni version of Scarface, was used again by
DePalma and became a catch phrase that has shown up in many hip hop artifacts, videos,
33
album titles, and songs. The raw, aggressive, unbridled energy in DePalma's film—80's
avarice personified—makes it an essential hip hop text (George 108). My script exhibits
the same raw, aggressive, and unbridled energy and employs the moralistic and criminal
ideals Snoop Dog talks about in Ken Tucker's book, when he describes Scarface's impact
on rap culture:
Scarface laid out everything a gangsta needed to know; how to handle
himself, how to live by a code of making money that may be gotten in
illegal ways, but having a kind of morality. He would not kill that man's
wife and kids with that bomb, you've got to remember that. He had his
limits. You can watch it for fun, to get off on his big guns and "Say hello
to my little friend" and that funny shit. But you can also use it the way a
businessman uses self help books—a confidence builder, as a blueprint
you can apply to your life, because the also tells you what not to do—
don't get so fucked up that you can't run your own organization, that you
can't have a family—those are some powerful positive messages too
(115).
Scarface opened the door for the gangsta films that followed. It gave hip hop and the
Supreme Team an ideal for which to strive. With the door opened, filmmakers brought
the gangsta movie to Hollywood. As the gunslinger morphed into the gangster and then
into the black gangsta, the 1930s formula of gangster film stayed in vogue. This genre
uses a specific recipe for success and is one of Hollywood's most durable (Antonio 78), a
fact I intend to exploit.
34
In the late 1980s and early 1990s gangsta films exploded on the scene. Movies
like Colors (1988), New Jack City (1991), Menace II Society (1993), Boyz N the Hood
(1991), King of New York (1990), Set ifOff(1996), and Belly (1998) reached out to a
younger audience, one more in tune with hip hop and raised on MTV and videogame
violence. Movies depicted a dark, urban landscape dotted by drugs and violence. Munby
states, "The gangster film today has been deployed to dramatize the blasted hopes of
African Americans incarcerated in the ghettos of the nations de-industrializing cities" (2).
As hip hop achieved cinematic success and rappers turned into actors who carried films
on their name alone, the gangster/gangsta relationship revolutionized the movie industry.
The next step is'for the gangsta rappers outlaw heroes to take the movie center stage. I
intend that my screenplay accomplish this.
"The hood films of the 1990s took this logic a step further—gangsta rappers
becoming stars of vehicles that not only sold their hardcore raps but that depended on
these raps and rappers for their street credibility" (Grieveson, Sonnet, and Stanfield 277).
Nelson George described the new black youth culture brought into existence by hip hop
and the Supreme Team:
Films released between 1991 and 2001 that depicted gun-toting ruthless,
predatory, violent blacks killing other blacks (dubbed hood films) have
been the most effective medium for defining and disseminating the new
black youth culture. Over the decade these films portrayed the nihilism of
black youth culture in the form of wanton, blood thirsty, buck wilding
35
violence for violence's sake, substituting it wholesale for the new black
youth culture itself (127).
In essence, the black gangsta hero was born and entered the chronicles of outlaw heroes.
It is most important to understand that chronicles of gangsta lore originated on the streets
through hip hop and the media's coverage of the crack epidemic.
To portray the exploits of the Supreme Team, a drug crew romanticized in
literature and verse, my script merges gangsta flicks of the 1990s with classic gangster
movies of the 1930s in a traditional rise and fall narrative. New Jack City is a model for
my story line, and I refer to it. Antonio notes, "New Jack City was not intended to glorify
crime, gangsters, or drugs. It was to be a vivid and informed warning, a stylish cautionary
tale about the daily devastation caused by drugs and crime in many such communities
throughout this country" (23). In Gonzales's interview, Barry Michael Cooper says:
The movies I watched were Public Enemy, Angels with Dirty Faces. I
went and got those old Warner Brothers movies, which were Jimmy
Cagney showpieces. And there was the original Scarface with Paul Muni.
If there was no New Jack City, there would be no Boys N the Hood, there
would be no Menace II Society, because it let the public know and more
importantly let the suits in the studio know, that these movies make
money. The effect it had was like crack. It was an immediate hit. Wesley
Snipes took Nino Brown and made him sympathetic and repulsive at the
same time. Nino had it all. Wesley projected that, so he's a progenitor of
that movement—of Puff, of Dame, of Jay-Z, of Cam'ron. I would go as
far as people like the Game and even Kanye. He had confidence, with
intelligence, style and danger. These guys have this because the record
business is dangerous. That's like the drug game. And the drugs is the
music.
Barry Michael Cooper could easily have been speaking of the Supreme Team, because
they were all of that and more; a movie about them should be a viable project. The
financial success of black gangsta films shows that my screenplay could well be a
profitable film venture and should give a better understanding of the culture produced
and reflected by hip hop, crack, and the Supreme Team. They are the gangsta heroes of
modernity. The creation of the Supreme Team screenplay is the most searching and
descriptive way to approach this subject because it embodies all the elements I have
previously addressed including film, crime, hip hop, drug crews, and the way they all
converge in our society, juxtaposed to form the gangsta heroes of street legend.
CHAPTER 6
THE STREET SCRIPTS THE SCREEN AND VICE-VERSA
I have touched upon the history of the outlaw hero, in legend, film, and myth,
ranging from Old Western times to the present. One bad guy has led to the next until the
Supreme Team, a contemporary criminal drug crew that came of age in the mid 1980s
when hip hop was born and the crack epidemic raged. These factors were pivotal in
catapulting the Supreme Team beyond their contemporaries and into a realm of popular
culture, previously occupied by the likes of Billy the Kid, Al Capone, and John Gotti, the
gunslingers and gangsters of infamy whose legendary notoriety and mythical status has
outlived their reality. Several reasons for such lasting images of gangster heroes have
been analyzed to verify their crossover into film and iconic status. The "gunslinger to
gangster to gangsta" evolution has been examined as a process of art imitating life
imitating art. The ultimate result of this case study is the screenplay exploration in the
Appendix, my creative project, The Supreme Team screenplay. The script intends to bring
together many of the issues addressed in this thesis for a closer look at the gangster hero
as he fits into the popular medium of film. The screenplay shows the Supreme Team
world where hip hop and crack ruled, and opens a view into the culture in order to better
understand it.
The Supreme Team was often described as public benefactors who looked out for
the neighborhood, and many Queens natives viewed them as modern day Robin Hoods;
they were not Robin Hood, but they were from the hood, born and bred in the poverty,
degradation, and chaos of the inner city. Stories of their turkey giveaways, of taking kids
to amusement parks by the busload, and of financial aid to residents of Baisley Projects
endeared them to common people as their exploits transcended into street lore. Hip hop
stars like 50 Cent, Ja Rule, and Nas further strengthened the Supreme Team's claim to
fame and their reputation as mythical Robin Hood-type figures, as their raps celebrated
the crew's tales in lyrical lore, song, verse, and video. The rappers did what Paul Kooistra
called "drawing on the Robin Hood formula" (177). He explains the process:
By drawing upon the Robin Hood formula and selected elements of a
criminals' biography promoters construct for the brigand a social identity
with which many may identify. The form of the myth remains the same.
The glorified lawbreaker is endowed with noble attributes reflecting
admirable cultural traits that negate the less desirable aspects of his
criminality. His lawlessness is rationalized and justified for he is driven to
crime (177).
A violent Peter Pan emerges in film and in life, who justifies his every antisocial act,
even murder, as a debt owed to him (McCarty 5). The myth, the legend, and the icon of
the outlaw hero is a cherished American concept. This is exhibited by the fact that
"gangster movies are moneymakers, and the movies are a business as well as an art"
(McCarty 15).
While the art has evolved through the centuries, it is basically still the same
drawing provided solely for entertainment purposes, amusement for the masses, and for
vicarious thrills. The view of a world constantly pitted against law and order, and to its
39
own detriment, a cycle of violence and more crime, a progression of gunslinger to
gangster to gangsta. Johnathan Munby reveals the dynamics at work in the evolution of
the genre and society's identification with the gangster hero:
The gangster films of the early 1930s have been interpreted as disguised
westerns that replay the oppositions and problems endemic to that genre.
The gangsters film's most notable inheritance from traditional outlaw
mythology was its splitting of audience identification between the center
of narrative interest, the individual outlaw/gangster, on one hand, and the
center of moral interest, the official community, on the other hand. In
essence, the gangster replayed seemingly eternal American dichotomies
between the values of individualism and the values of civic responsibility
(13).
In turn, the same motifs have been transferred to the gangsta film genre and modern day
gangsta hero. The conclusion is the same: struggle, strife, momentary success against the
powers that be, and ultimately the gangsta hero's downfall. This process is repeated again
and again, ingraining itself onto the public's consciousness.
As an art and entertainment form, gangsterism has been heavily romanticized and
exploited by pop culture. There are indeed some romantic qualities and an aura of
nobility surrounding criminal crews like the Supreme Team, but apart from its
entertainment value, it is generally an ugly business. Fans of gangster movies live
vicariously through their favorite characters and enjoy their adventures without the risks
of death or prison. For most people it is a form of escapism, the possibility to view
consequences without risk. For such fans it reinforces ideals of law and order while the
escapism and realism remain exciting. Elijah Anderson justifies such realism and its
derivation:
Television images portray and even glamorize the fast life, and movies
such as The Godfather, Set it Off, Boys N the Hood and Menace II Society
that feature gratuitous violence help legitimize violence for many young
men. The films have a certain realism and deal with the complex problems
that emerge everyday on the ghetto streets. But probably most important,
the films, along with rap music as well as their everyday experiences, help
youths become inured to violence and, perhaps, death itself (135).
In several ways the fascination implies danger, as gangsta heroes perform acts many
would like to emulate but cannot —or will not—for various social reasons. These heroes
may well be one expression of American individualism and freedom, as gunslingers were
before them. My screenplay explores and exemplifies these aspects and implications.
For better or worse, black gangster films have helped shape a generation's
consciousness as it depicts the new black youth culture, thereby reinforcing the rap
messages that solidified a generation's youth culture. Where black gangsta films
misinformed the public, given the power and pervasiveness of visual images in our
information age, they contributed to crises in the African American culture (George 67).
The use of the African American movie gangster represents the re-use of a classic 1930s
films articulation of the American dream to emphasize that it is impossible to achieve in
gangster form. The lure is always there, but the gangsta hero never succeeds. As
41
Warshow writes, he is the tragic hero. Thus, the classic rise and fall narrative comes into
play, whereby the shocking rise and success comes before the inevitable fall. Ianni
identifies the thought process:
Both of these propositions are based upon assumptions that organized
crime is more than just a criminal way of life; it is a viable and persistent
institution within American society with its own symbols, its own beliefs,
its own logic, and its own means of transmitting these systematically from
one generation to the next. Viewed in this way organized crime is a
functional part of the American social system (272).
The French sociologist Emile Durkheim also made a claim that crime is a natural social
activity, a basic component of the existing social order, and "an integral part of all
healthy societies" ( 67). For Durkheim a society without crime is inconceivable. If all
behavior defined as criminal is erased, a new behavior would be substituted in its place.
Crime, therefore, is inevitable, and crime, like outlaw heroes and Hollywood's portrayal
of them, has become an institution.
Presdee states, "We all participate in the creation of crime as we consume the
filming of the carnival of the chase, becoming part of the process of production of real
crime and real violence. It is not just the criminals but also the police, the public, and the
media who all play a part" (65). Ferrell, Hayward, and Young expand on this notion:
In late modernity communications morph and proliferate, creating and
servicing a diversity of audiences, replacing weakened traditional
communities with communities of virtual meaning and emotion. In this
process two social identities are created and contrasted: positively the
celebrity, and negatively various deviants, criminals and outcasts—
though, as we will see, these two identities are often made to intersect.
Powerful but ambiguous orientation to crime and crime control, to
morality and immorality, are in this way, circulated through a world
hungry for just such distraction. As personal identity disintegrates, virtual
identity becomes more desirable, more dangerous—even more real (59).
The lines blur between reality and fiction; a true crime movie perpetuates the myth, the
legend becomes fact, then the fiction becomes reality. My screenplay expands on this
notion and perpetuates and promotes the legend, hopefully to a bigger and wider
audience. Ferrell et al. write, "In a world where media images of crime and deviance
proliferate, where crime and crime control reflect off the shiny face of popular culture,
cultural criminology means to make sense of the blurred line between real and the
virtual" (81). This thesis and my screenplay also attempt to straddle that line. Cultural
criminology is where film and criminology meet. Criminals and their transformation into
outlaw heroes in society and film is cultural criminology. Rafter states: The gap between
film studies and criminology may eventually be bridged by cultural criminology, a new
area of inquiry that aims at understanding how social groups perceive and create
knowledge about crime. Cultural criminology attempts to make sense of a world in which
the street scripts the screen and the screen scripts the street (5).
In Predator Criminals as Media Icons, Ray Surette writes that "one result of the
media's central role is the construction of mass-media supported crime myths" that have
43
almost nothing to do with crime actualities but nonetheless "provide knowledge that
becomes permanently incorporated into our socially constructed world models" (Rafter
89). The reality is that America loves its outlaw heroes. The Supreme Team is reality. It
was a scourge in the community but has become to be seen as much more. Through hip
hop, crack epidemic propaganda, newspaper headlines, court records, books, magazines,
and now this screenplay, the gangstas have transcended what they were. As with outlaw
heroes and Hollywood gangsters before them, my script along with reality and
Hollywood magic will make a meaningful statement about gangsta heroes, the gangster
film genre, and will help to satisfy America's apparent appetite for all things gangster.
Schatzburg and Kelly remark, "To dismiss the effects that the image-making of
the electronic media coverage and portrayal of African American crime has on popular
attitudes would be irresponsible" (252). This is true, but where do we draw the line
between reality and entertainment? In the 2010 world not everything is so black and
white.
44
CHAPTER 7
CONCLUSION
This thesis has covered various aspects involving America's fascination with
outlaw heroes and their evolution from gunslingers to gangsters to "gangstas" in society
and in motion pictures. The research and analysis have verified that "the street scripts the
screen and the screen scripts the street." A further exploration of this posit is offered in
the following screenplay appendix. The main thrust of the thesis has been to place the
contemporary outlaw gang, among other outlaw heroes and their history, in context with
the Robin Hood legend and its cultural and mythical lore.
My research has suggested how and why society has often turned criminals into
gangster heroes and celebrated their roles in motion pictures. The gangster film genre has
been explored and examined from its inception as a Western ideal to its contemporary
status. A screenplay on this vital subject is a viable and appealing blueprint for a
meaningful filmic project, one with a potentially large audience and with an impact on
film studies, as well as on popular culture.
WORKS CITED
WORKS CITED
Anderson, Elijah. Code of the Street. New York: WW Norton and Company, 1999. Print.
Antonio, Sheril D. Contemporary African American Cinema. New York: Peter Lang
Publishing, 2002. Print.
Durkheim, Emile, The Division of Labour in Society. New York: The Free Press (Simon
& Schuster), 1984. Print.
Ferrell, Jeff, Keith Hayward, Wayne Morrison, and Mike Presdee. Cultural Criminology
Unleashed. Portland: Cavendish Publishing, 2004. Print.
Ferrell, Jeff, Keith Hayward, and Jock Young. Cultural Criminology. Thousand Oaks:
SAGE Publications, 2008. Print.
50 Cent. "Ghetto Qua ran." Guess Who's Back. Full Clip, 2002. Audiocassette.
Greene, Richard, and Randall E. Autier. Quentin Tarantino and Philosophy. Chicago:
Open Court Publishing, 2007. Print.
Grieveson Lee, Esther Sonnet, and Peter Stanfield. Mob Culture. Camden: Rutgers
University Press, 2005. Print.
George, Nelson. Hip Hop America. New York: Viking Penguin, 1999. Print.
Gonzales, Michael A. "Baltimore Orator: Barry Michael Cooper." Stop Smiling
Magazine 2006. Print.
Ianni, A.J. Black Mafia. New York: Pocket Books (Simon & Schuster), 1975. Print.
Ja Rule. "Survival of the Illest Intro." Survival of the Illest. DMX, 2002. CD.
Kitwana, Bakari. Hip Hop Generation. New York: Basic Civitas Books, 2003. Print.
Kooistra, Paul. Criminals as Heroes. Bowling Green: Bowling Green State University
Popular Press, 1989. Print.
Mason, Fran. American Gangster Cinema. New York: Palgrove MacMillian, 2002. Print.
McCarty, John. Bullets Over Hollywood. Cambridge: First Da Capo Press, 2004. Print.
Munby, Jonathan. Public Enemies, Public Heroes. Chicago: The University of Chicago
Press, 1999. Print.
Nas. "Memory Lane." Illmatic. Geffen Columbia Records, 1994. CD.
Presdee, Mike. Cultural Criminology and the Carnival of Crime. New York: Routledge
Publication, 2000. Print.
Rabb, Selwyn. "A New Breed of Criminal" The New York Times, 1988. Print.
Rafter, Nicole. Shots in the Mirror. New York: Oxford University Press, 2006. Print.
Schatzberg, Rufus. Black Organized Crime. New York: Garland Publishing, 1993. Print.
Schatzberg, Rufus, and Kelly, Robert J. African American Organized Crime. Newark:
Rutgers University, 1997. Print.
Smith, Greg B. Made Men. New York: Berkley Books, 2003. Print.
Surette, Ray. Media, Crime and Criminal Justice: Predator Criminals as Media Icon,
Florence: Wadsworth Publishing, 1991. Print.
Tucker, Ken. Scarface. Nation. New York: St. Martin's Griffin, 2008. Print.
Warshow, Robert. The Immediate Experience: Movies, Comics, Theatre and Other
Aspects of Popular Culture: The Gangster as Tragic Hero. Cambridge: Harvard
University Press, 1948. Print.
Yablonsky, Lewis. Gangsters. New York: New York University Press, 1997. Print.
APPENDIX
THE SUPREME TEAM SCREENPLAY
THE SUPREME TEAM
AN ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
BASED ON A TRUE STORY
BY
SETH FERRANTI
FADE UP:
INT. APARTMENT - LATE AFTERNOON
A Jamaican flag is hanging on the wall, and a rat scurries across the dirty, debris strewn
floor. We see succulent young chocolate legs of a young woman, and then the gorgeous
JAMAICAN GIRL that they belong to. She sweats in the heat, with her dreadlocks
hanging, and she is almost naked and enticing, but her hands are busy counting money.
On the coffee table numerous stacks of bills are rubber-banded together. A door is open
down the hall, and a SOCCER MATCH can be heard from the TV off screen. The
Jamaican Girl rubber-bands the latest stack she is counting and moves her dreads out of
her face so that we can appreciate her beauty, which is radiant in its Afrocentricity.
JAMAICAN GIRL
It be too damn hot to be counting this money.
JAMAICAN MAN (O.S.)
Shut up, girl. Don't you know I and I is watching the match? Count the
bloodclot money, you hear what I and I be saying, girl?
The Jamaican Girl continues to count the money, and the SOCCER MATCH is still heard
offscreen. The door is KICKED IN. Suddenly, PRINCE, a young, lean, and handsome
black kid, and PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS, a tall, muscular Puerto Rican, rush in,
guns drawn, with masks on. The Jamaican Girl reaches under the couch for a shotgun.
Puerto Rican Righteous FIRES at her. THREE SHOTS hit her point blank in the torso.
Blood splatters, and her body convulses. She never gets the shotgun out. The
JAMAICAN MAN rushes out of the room into the hallway with a MAC-10 in his hand
and sees the Jamaican Girl lying dead, slumped down on the couch, while money and
cotton stuffing from the couch float through the air, and blood drips from her body.
JAMAICAN MAN
Bumberclot.
He FIRES the MAC-10, but Prince is lying in wait and knocks him over the head with his
pistol, leaving the Jamaican Man bleeding on the floor. Puerto Rican Righteous pulls up
his mask and looks down at the Jamaican Man.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
(laughing)
Bumberclot.
Prince looks to Puerto Rican Righteous.
51
PRINCE
Put your mask on, fool. Why'd you shoot the girl? I told you no killing.
Puerto Rican Righteous shrugs his shoulders and puts his mask back on. Prince looks
down the hallway to the room where the SOCCER MATCH can still be heard.
PRINCE
Get the money. I'll get the weed.
He steps over the Jamaican Man. As he walks down the hall, a shot FIRES.
PRINCE
Righteous?
We see Puerto Rican Righteous standing over the dead Jamaican Man.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
He was going for his gun.
INT. FAMILY APARTMENT OF PRECIOUS - MORNING
PRECIOUS, a beautiful young Hispanic girl, stands at the sink in the kitchen of her home
washing the dishes. Her YOUNGER SIBLINGS run through the kitchen startling her,
and she drops a dish, which BREAKS.
PRECIOUS
Madre de Dios. Este niiios.
The Younger Siblings stop and smile at her.
PRECIOUS
Get out of the kitchen, ahora mismo!
The Younger Siblings run out of the kitchen screaming.
MARIA (O.S.)
What is all that goddamn noise?
PRECIOUS
Nothing, mami.
Precious bends down as she picks up the pieces of the broken dish. MARIA, Precious'
mother, an older, still attractive Hispanic woman, walks in the kitchen.
52
MARIA
Mija, be quiet, all this noise is gonna wake up tu padre.
A CRASH is heard from off screen as the Younger Siblings run back in the kitchen and
hide behind their Mother and Precious.
PEDRO (O.S.)
Maria, get these goddamn kids out of here. Where are you, goddamn it?
Everyone in the kitchen goes silent as PEDRO, an elderly Hispanic man who has seen his
best days, walks in, clearly hung over. He looks over his family and sees Precious with
the broken dish.
PEDRO
You stupid girl. That was our wedding gift, and look who broke it? Why
am I not surprised? You're no good, girl. Always out there chasing those
morenos. Look at our daughter, Maria. She dresses like a whore.
The whole family stands silent at PEDRO's outburst. Precious runs from the kitchen
crying.
MARIA
Mija.
INT. SUPREME'S APARTMENT - MORNING
SUPREME stands in all his glory, dressed in a white linen suit, no tie, top shirt buttons
unbuttoned, and looking like Tony Montana. He is in discussion with BLACK JUST,
who's decked out in the latest hip-hop gear.
BLACK JUST
I just don't know, 'Preme. I know he's your nephew, but he's a stick-up
kid.
SUPREME
I know, I know, but what were we at one time? We just need him to be a
figurehead for the team.
BLACK JUST
Some of the other guys might not like it.
53
SUPREME
Then they'll just have to get used to it.
EST. BAISLEY PROJECTS- THE SOUTHSIDE OF JAMAICA, QUEENS NEW
YORK-1985
EXT. PROJECT COURTYARD - AFTERNOON
Empty crack vials litter the broken sidewalk. We first only see the "Baisley Park Houses"
sign, and then the projects as a whole. Across the courtyard at the picnic tables, residents
of all ages are gathered watching people play chess. Prince walks from table to table,
chessboard to chessboard, making moves. Puerto Rican Righteous watches from across
the courtyard.
BLACK JUST (O.S.)
Yo, Righteous, my man.
Puerto Rican Righteous looks up to see Black Just approaching. Black Just nods and
pounds fists with Puerto Rican Righteous. They both glance over at Prince playing chess.
BLACK JUST
He's at it again.
PUERTO RIGHTEOUS
You know how that nigga do.
BLACK JUST
How many is he playing this time?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Eight.
BLACK JUST
Eight at once?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yeah.
Prince looks up and sees Black Just motioning him over. Prince quickly ends all eight
games he is playing with one move each and walks over to join Black Just and Puerto
Rican Righteous.
54
PRINCE
What's up?
BLACK JUST
Your uncle wants to see you.
TNT. SUPREME'S APARTMENT - AFTERNOON
Supreme sits on a couch watching TV. An ankle bracelet monitor is locked on his lower
leg. He touches it with his hand and shakes his head. On the TV screen the movie Juice
is PLAYING. It is at the exact part where Bishop (Tupac) is watching White Heat with
James Cagney, right at the end where Cagney and Tupac yell "Top of the world, Ma!"
SUPREME
"Top of the world, Ma!"
A KNOCK at the door draws his attention and he turns the TV off with the remote.
Black Just, Prince, and Puerto Rican Righteous enter.
SUPREME
Sit down, sit down.
PRINCE
What's up, Unc?
Prince, Supreme, and Puerto Rican Righteous sit down. Black Just stands behind them.
SUPREME
You all do that Jamaican dealer?
PRINCE
No way, 'Preme.
SUPREME
(laughing)
You hear that, Just?
Black Just laughs also, nodding his head.
55
SUPREME
That's good. Glad to hear it. You don't need to do no shit like that
anymore. I got something better for you. I want you to run the team for
me. Low key, slow money is better than fast money. Run it like I've been
running it. Trust in Black Just.
Prince and Puerto Rican Righteous look at each other.
SUPREME
You both gotta promise me something.
PRINCE
Anything, 'Preme.
SUPREME
Never rat on your friends, and always keep your mouth shut.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - ROOFTOP - NIGHT
Prince and Puerto Rican Righteous lounge on the roof, looking out over the projects and
city beyond. Prince is reading a book, The Prince, by Machiavelli. The Art of War, by
Sun Tzu, is next to him. Puerto Rican Righteous sits beside Prince smoking a joint. He
tries to hand it to Prince, who waves his hand to decline.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Why you always reading that bullshit?
PRINCE
Why you always smoking that bullshit?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What you mean? This shit is straight chronic. For real, though. Why you
always reading so much? You ain't going to college or nothing.
PRINCE
To learn, B. I'm trying to expand my horizons.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What you gonna learn from some fucking book? I got all I need to learn
right here.
56
Puerto Rican Righteous lifts up his shirt to reveal a pistol.
PRINCE
That's all good, B. But there's a whole lot more to it than that. Life is out
there, kid, but we're right here stuck in this ghetto. I want to get out, B. I
want to go to Africa. I want to see the world. There's more to it than just
Queens.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You crazy, son, for real. What you think about what your uncle said?
PRINCE
I don't like it. I don't wanna run the team. I like doing what we do.
Robbing muthafuckas and stacking paper so I can get the fuck outta here.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Are you fucking serious, kid?
PRINCE
Damn right, I'm serious. I don't need'Preme's problems. What about the
other team members, like Fat Pete, Bimmy, and Babywise? You don't
think they'll buck? It's the Supreme Team, but they've been down since
the jump. I don't need that headache.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Fuck them. We need to get that money, kid. I'm trying to come up. I
need to get mine. We can make some serious paper running the team. I
can't believe you don't want no part of that.
PRINCE
Believe it, B. Believe it. I want more out of life than being some drug
lord. Look at 'Preme. All that ghetto celebrity shit got him is a fucking
number in the feds, you heard. I'm not trying to go that route. I don't need
that shit in my life. We almost stacked enough paper to get out of here.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Well whatever, kid. Just know that I got your back regardless.
INT. EMPIRE ROLLER SKATING RINK - NIGHT
Mid-80s hip-hop BLASTS from the sound system as kids skate around the rink. Prince
and Puerto Rican Righteous watch the girls skate by with their homies. All the girls know
57
who Prince is, and he is a local celebrity. Even the fat girls try to get his attention when
they skate by, drawing laughter from C-JUST, POOKIE, BIG C, KNOWLEDGE, and
SERIOUS. A beautiful girl skates by preening at them.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Look at that bitch. Damn!
C-JUST
She's all ass, B.
KNOWLEDGE
Check out shorty right there.
ALL OF THEM
Damn!
Prince watches as Precious skates by. She is nonchalant. She knows she is beautiful and
knows that all eyes are on her. She catches Prince's eye and winks at him, then she looks
behind him to Puerto Rican Righteous and smiles.
KNOWLEDGE
She's checking you out, Righteous.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
No way, B. She was checking out Prince, word.
C-JUST
Word to 'Preme, son.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You need to step to her, Prince.
PRINCE
Fuck that, B. Money over bitches, right?
C-JUST
I heard that, kid.
EXT. EMPIRE ROLLER SKATING RINK PARKING LOT - NIGHT
Prince and his crew are in the parking lot by Prince's tricked out Audi. A black Mercedes
with tinted windows drives up. The BASS from the woofers can be heard throughout the
58
whole parking lot, and the Mercedes shakes with the BOOM of the bass. The window
goes down, and FAT PETE nods to Prince and drives off.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Who the fuck is that?
PRINCE
Fat Pete.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Word? I don't like the way that nigga looked at you.
PRINCE
Fuck him, he ain't about nothing. He's been my uncle's lieutenant since
forever.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I still don't like the way that nigga looked at you.
Prince pays Righteous no mind though as two girls walk up to them. It's Precious with
her friend, LUPE. They stop a ways from Prince.
LUPE
Go talk to him, Precious. He's eyeing you down crazy.
PRECIOUS
I can't. You know my papi don't want me talking to no morenos.
LUPE
What about the boriqua? He's cute. Go on.
PRECIOUS
No way. I know him. We went to school together.
LUPE
Well introduce me then, girl.
Precious walks up with Lupe to the crew of guys.
PRECIOUS
Hey, what's up? I'm Precious.
KNOWLEDGE
That you are, baby girl. I'm—
59
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Shut up, fool, The lady ain't here to see you. I'm—
PRECIOUS
I know who you are, Ernesto, but who is this?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
This my man, Prince, and they call me Puerto Rican Righteous now.
KNOWLEDGE
Yeah and I'm Knowledge. This is C-Just, Pookie, Big C, and Serious.
Now who's your girl?
PRECIOUS
This is Lupe. Righteous, how you been? I ain't seen you for a while.
PRINCE
You know her?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yeah, we went to grade school together. I didn't recognize you at first,
Precious. You've grown so much, and in all the right places.
PRECIOUS
Thank you. But like I said, this is Lupe, Righteous. And you're Prince.
PRINCE
Yeah, Babygirl. That's me. In the flesh.
PRECIOUS
Well here's my number. You better call.
LUPE
And Righteous, here's mine.
KNOWLEDGE
You got any more girlfriends?
The two girls giggle, and they walk away.
KNOWLEDGE
And such a woman, if you make her laugh, you got a life.
The crew bursts into laughter.
60
INT. SUPREME'S APARTMENT - DAY
All of the Supreme Team lieutenants are gathered. Fat Pete, BABYWISE, BIMMY,
Black Just, and others. Supreme is holding court with Prince and Puerto Rican Righteous
at his side.
SUPREME
You all know I got some time to do.
Everyone nods their heads and looks around.
SUPREME
I got this time to do, and someone has to run the team in my absence.
Fat Pete sits up straighter, and everyone looks around.
SUPREME
I've given this a lot of thought, and I'm gonna leave my nephew in charge
of the team.
Fat Pete jumps up in disbelief, KNOCKING over his chair.
FAT PETE
Man, fuck that, Supreme.
Black Just gets up too, grabbing the gun in his waist.
BLACK JUST
No hold up, babyboy. Listen to the man.
BIMMY
Yeah Pete, word to 'Preme, yo.
Supreme looks down at Prince, and Fat Pete picks up his chair and sits back down,
glaring at Prince.
SUPREME
We all built this, but I run it.
Supreme glares directly at Fat Pete.
61
SUPREME
My word is bond. Prince is running the team.
Everyone looks at Prince, and he stands up.
PRINCE
Look, no offense to you all, and to you especially 'Preme, but I don't
wanna run the team.
SUPREME
What?
FAT PETE
See that dumb nigga don't even wanna be in charge.
PRINCE
Who you calling dumb, nigga?
FAT PETE
It's just a figure of speech, kid. Now get the fuck out of here while us
grownups discuss business.
PRINCE
You need to watch who the fuck you talking to, Fat Pete.
Puerto Rican Righteous stands up and puts his hand on his gun.
FAT PETE
What, all you little niggas gonna threaten me? 'Preme, you gonna let this
little nigga talk to me like that?
SUPREME
Hold the fuck up. You all need to chill the fuck out.
FAT PETE
Man, fuck that and fuck you. All of you. I've been busting my gut and
putting in work for this team for all these years, and that's what I get:
'Preme putting some little nigga in charge of what we worked so hard to
build. Fuck that.
Fat Pete gets up and STORMS out of the apartment.
62
BLACK JUST
Fat Pete, nigga, get back here, yo.
SUPREME
Let him go. He'll get over it.
BLACK JUST
I don't know, Supreme.
Supreme looks around at all the lieutenants.
SUPREME
I need you all to support me on this.
BIMMY
But he don't even want it, 'Preme.
Supreme looks at Prince, who shakes his head.
PRINCE
You got Fat Pete, Preme. He's your homie. You don't need me. I'm
about to get the fuck out of New York. My paper's right. I'm about to
bounce. I don't need this.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - COURTYARD - AFTERNOON
Prince and Puerto Rican Righteous sit on a bench in the courtyard.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What you wanna do about that nigga, Fat Pete?
PRINCE
Man, leave that shit alone. We don't need no drama. That's why I don't
wanna run the team.Too much drama. I got better shit to do.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Fuck that. That nigga disrespected you, kid.
Puerto Rican Righteous holds up his hand like a gun and blows it.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
He gotta die.
63
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - STREET - NIGHT
Fat Pete is in his black Mercedes arguing with Black Just, who leans in the window.
BLACK JUST
Damn, Pete, just listen. 'Preme still gonna run the team through me.
Prince just a figurehead for the streets. The public, you feel me?
FAT PETE
Fuck that little nigga. We done put in too much time and too much work
for him to just step in.
Puerto Rican Righteous walks up the street. He scopes the scene and moves against the
wall, getting closer so he can hear what Black Just and Fat Pete are discussing.
BLACK JUST
'Preme got sentenced today, Pete. We just got to ride this one out how he
wanted.
FAT PETE
Ain't no way, yo. I ain't taking no orders from that little nigga. He ain't
running shit.
Black Just throws his hands up. Puerto Rican Righteous walks up and greets Black Just.
He looks in the car and smiles at Fat Pete, checking out the car.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Nice car, Fat Pete.
FAT PETE
Don't get it twisted, Righteous.
INT. SUPREME'S APARTMENT - NIGHT
Supreme and Prince sit across the table from each other.
64
SUPREME
Look, Nephew, you know you got to do this for me. You're family.
You're the only one I trust. I just need you to run this shit for me while
I'm in the feds. You can't do that for me?
PRINCE
But 'Preme, I wanna get out of here. Out of the projects, out of New York. That's why I
been jacking muthafuckas to get money to leave. I want to go to Africa, 'Preme. I want
to see the world. Fuck all this gangster shit. It ain't for me.
SUPREME
I hear you, but we family right? You gotta do this for me, then you can
get out. Be my arm on the street. I wouldn't ask you if I had someone
else. Everybody is down with it.
PRINCE
What about Fat Pete?
EXT. CARMICHAEL'S DINER - NIGHT
Fat Pete is holding court in front of Carmichael's Diner across the street from Baisley
Projects. Puerto Rican Righteous is in the diner at a comer booth, watching him. Fat Pete
walks behind the diner, and Puerto Rican Righteous walks out the door to follow him.
EXT. BEHIND? CARMICHAEL'S DINER - NIGHT
The SOUND of urine hitting the ground is heard as Puerto Rican Righteous walks around
the back of the diner. He steps on broken GLASS. Fat Pete whips his head around.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yo, Fat Pete, let me hold your whip, son.
FAT PETE
What, nigga: Is you stupid?
Puerto Rican Righteous takes out his pistol.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
This is a robbery, don't make it a homicide. I said, let me hold your whip,
drunk nigga.
65
Fat Pete stops URINATING, looks at the gun, and goes in his pocket for his car keys.
FAT PETE
Robbing me is the last thing you gonna do. I'm gonna get you and that
little nigga, Prince, when 'Preme goes away.
Puerto Rican Righteous grabs the car keys that Fat Pete TOSSES in the air.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
This ain't personal, nigga. Just business.
Puerto Rican Righteous turns to walk away, and Fat Pete looks relieved. Puerto Rican
Righteous turns back around.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Remember I told you not to make it a homicide?
Fat Pete nods.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Well I lied, nigga. This is a homicide.
Puerto Rican Righteous raises his gun and BLASTS Fat Pete three times in the chest. Fat
Pete is knocked against the wall, and he slumps to the ground bleeding. Puerto Rican
Righteous calmly sticks the gun back in his waistband and walks to the front of the diner,
TWIRLING the keys and whistling. GIRL #1 who was with Fat Pete eyes him.
GIRL#1
Where's Fat Pete?
Puerto Rican Righteous doesn't answer. He continues walking to the black Mercedes and
gets in, starting up the car.
GIRL#1
Wait, that's Fat Pete's ride, nigga.
Puerto Rican Righteous smiles at Girl #1.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Not anymore, babygirl, he's dead. You weren't even with him tonight
were you?
GIRL#1
No, I haven't seen him since yesterday.
66
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Good. I hope I won't have to see you again.
GIRL#1
Who's gonna drive me home?
Puerto Rican Righteous throws a crumpled 100 dollar bill at her.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Take a cab, bitch.
The cars tires SCREECH as Puerto Rican Righteous floors it out of the parking lot.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - MORNING
We follow a child's radio controlled tmck through the hall. The tmck dodges trash, runs
over rough spots in the floor, and speeds up. A BOY and GIRL #2 giggle as the
mechanical motorized SOUND of the remote-controlled tmck is heard.
GIRL #2
Let me do it, let me do it.
The Boy ignores her as he controls the tmck that comes to a STOP at a foot wearing
black Timberlands. The truck STRUGGLES against the booted foot that is impeding it,
GRINDING back and forth.
PRINCE
Why don't you give your sister a try?
BOY
Gimme my truck before I call my dad.
Prince smiles. He bends down, turns the truck around, and it SPEEDS off.
BOY
That's what I thought, mister.
The Boy and Girl #2 watch Prince as he watches them and the Boy maneuvers the tmck
back to them with the control. The Boy picks it up and runs off. Girl #2 pauses
momentarily and looks at Prince. Prince smiles and waves and Girl #2 waves back,
before running off with the Boy. We see Precious watching, unnoticed by Prince, who
turns in her direction.
PRECIOUS
What's up?
PRINCE
What are you doing? Spying on me?
PRECIOUS
Something like that. I see you like kids.
PRINCE
You could say that.
Precious sexily saunters over to Prince.
PRECIOUS
You like what you see?
PRINCE
You could say that.
PRECIOUS
I like you, Prince. I really do. But it would never work. My papi doesn't
like morenos. We could never be together.
PRINCE
Oh yeah, is that right?
PRECIOUS
Yeah, that's right. But you probably got all the girls anyhow, so what
would you need a girl like me for?
They lock eyes, but the moment is lost as Puerto Rican Righteous mns up. He looks to
Prince and smiles at Precious, who smiles back.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What's up, Precious?
PRECIOUS
What's up? I was just talking to your boy. Did you ever call Lupe?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
No, not yet. Excuse us a minute. I gotta holla at Prince.
68
Puerto Rican Righteous grabs Prince off to the side.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
(whispers)
Yo, kid. Fat Pete's niggas is down on the block talking shit about what
they gonna do to you.
PRINCE
What the fuck you talking about, B?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I murked that nigga, kid.
PRINCE
You what?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I got him. I told you I always got your back, kid. Always. That's my
word, and that nigga needed to get got.
Precious watches them, not liking that she's not the center of attention. She clears her
throat.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Oh, Precious. My bad.
Prince looks at Precious, then turns and walks away. Puerto Rican Righteous turns to go,
following Prince.
PRECIOUS
Righteous, where you all going?
Puerto Rican Righteous turns back.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
We got something we got to handle.
Puerto Rican Righteous heads to the door, then, looks back at Precious and flashes a
maniacal grin. Precious stands there alone.
PRECIOUS
Something to handle? Am I missing something?
69
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - DAYLIGHT
Prince and Puerto Rican Righteous hide in the alleyway, watching THUG #1 and THUG
#2 yell and wave their guns threateningly on the block.
PRINCE
That's them.
Puerto Rican Righteous nods his head while smiling and loads a bullet into the chamber
of his gun.
PRINCE
Righteous, chill! Let me try to handle this diplomatically.
Puerto Rican Righteous holds his gun, still smiling. Prince shakes his head.
YOUNG DUDE #1 and YOUNG DUDE #2 cower, trying to serve the dope fiends but
their sales are being interrupted by the two older thugs.
THUG#1
Fuck them niggas. That little nigga shot my man. Where the fuck he at?
Somebody gonna answer for that shit. Tell me, nigga, where the fuck
Prince at?
Thug #1 pistol-whips Young Dude #1. Blood splatters as the gun barrel STRIKES the
side of dude's face. Young Dude #1 falls to the ground.
THUG # 1
(screaming up at the projects)
Prince, I'll kill you, nigga! Show yourself!
Prince looks at Puerto Rican Righteous and shakes his head.
PRINCE
Righteous, what the fuck you got me into?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You still want to handle it diplomatically?
Prince takes out his gun and checks to make sure a bullet is in the chamber.
70
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Ain't nothing we can't handle. You ready?
Puerto Rican Righteous mns toward the scene. His head is down, purposeful and
business like, not even looking at or caring about the spectacle in front of him.
PRINCE
Righteous, wait.
But Puerto Rican Righteous is gone. Prince clenches his teeth and heads out while trying
to be discreet and make it to the opposite side of the block. His pistol is out and ready to
fire to provide cover for Puerto Rican Righteous.
YOUNG DUDE #2
Yo, man, leave him alone. We don't know where Prince is. We don't
work for that kid. This Bimmy's shit.
THUG #1
I don't give a fuck. Fat Pete said 'Preme made Prince the boss, so we
beefing with the whole team, nigga. Where the fuck your boss at?
YOUNG DUDE #2
We don't know shit, man. You got shit twisted.
THUG #2
Twist this, nigga.
Thug #2 hits Young Dude #2 on the head with the butt of his gun just as Puerto Rican
Righteous walks up on Thug #1 and puts his gun to the side of his head.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Say hello to my little friend.
Thug #l's eyes widen as Puerto Rican Righteous SHOOTS him. People scream and
scatter as Thug #2 points his gun at Puerto Rican Righteous. Prince FIRES three times,
knocking Thug #2 to the ground with his shots. Thug #2 lies there bleeding but alive.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You were gonna shoot me in the back? Me? Are you crazy? Can't talk,
nigga? I'll make that permanent.
Puerto Rican Righteous levels his gun at Thug #2's head. Prince walks up behind Puerto
Rican Righteous and puts his hand on his shoulder, shaking his head.
71
PRINCE
Don't kill him.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What?
PRINCE
I said don't kill him. We made our point.
Prince turns to walk away but stops as two shots FIRE.
PRINCE
Righteous?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Sorry, man, but he was gonna shoot you.
Prince looks and sees the gun clutched in Thug #2's hand pointing in his direction.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I got you a new car, too, nigga.
PRINCE
What?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I got you a new car.
PRINCE
From where?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
It was Fat Pete's. He didn't need it no more.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - DAY
Black Just, Supreme, Prince, and Puerto Rican Righteous are in front of a white
Mercedes on the street comer.
PRINCE
'Preme, about Fat Pete, I'm sorry...
SUPREME
No, you did the right thing. It wouldn't have worked. He wanted to run
the team himself. It's better in your hands. Fat Pete was a thirsty nigga.
PRINCE
But, 'Preme, about that—
SUPREME
I don't want to hear it. We talked. It's done. Get with Just here. He'll
show you what's up. It will mn itself. You're just a figurehead.
Represent for me. Don't let me down.
PRINCE
Alright, 'Preme. I got you. This isn't what I wanted, but I won't let you
down. I wish Fat Pete could run the team, but he's gone and I'm
responsible, so I won't leave you hanging.
Supreme and Prince embrace. Supreme nods to Puerto Rican Righteous.
SUPREME
You watch his back, Righteous.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I got you, 'Preme.
Supreme and Black Just get in the car. Supreme lowers the window.
SUPREME
Remember, I want you to come see me at the prison. And Just will be
visiting me too, so whatever he tells you, take it like its coming from me,
OK?
PRINCE
OK, 'Preme. I got you.
The car DRIVES off.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
That's it? He just drives to the prison?
PRINCE
Yeah, he's self-surrendering.
73
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Fuck that. They'll have to drag me off the street in chains. I ain't never
going to prison.
PRINCE
I hear you, kid. I can't believe you got me into this bullshit. But if we
gonna do it, we might as well do it right. Now, you ready to do this?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I was bom ready.
PRINCE
I know. This is what you wanted, not me. But fuck it. The game chose
me.
INT. PRINCE'S APARTMENT - NIGHT
CLASSICAL MUSIC plays loudly in Prince's apartment. It is nice, clean, and pristine,
with all-white leather furniture. A big screen TV plays Scarface, but the sound is off. A
book case with DVDs like The Godfather and other gangster movies lines the wall, and a
Sega Genesis with games like Madden NFL Football and others are littered in front of the
TV on a glass table. Large framed photos of black leaders including Martin Luther King
Jr., Marcus Garvey, Bob Marley, Clarence 13X, and Bumby Johnson are on the wall,
along with African art, tapestries, and crafts. The Five Percenter sign is also prevalent on
the wall. Prince is at a white Baby Grand piano. He plays the last few notes of the
classical piece.
PRINCE
Not bad for a stick-up kid.
A BUZZ sounds. Prince gets up and presses the intercom to BUZZ the people in. The
door OPENS, and Puerto Rican Righteous enters, followed by Black Just, Babywise, and
Bimmy. They all sit down after greeting Prince. Prince places a gun on the glass coffee
table in front of him.
PRINCE
You all know why we're here. This isn't what I wanted, but it is what it is.
I'm gonna change shit up a little. The way the team's been doing business
is outdated. We gonna flip it up and get this money.
Prince looks around and gauges the others' reactions.
74
PRINCE
My uncle placed me in charge of the team. Why? I'm not quite sure.
Maybe he thinks he can mn this shit from the pen, but fuck that. If I'm in
charge, then I'm in charge, and we gonna do shit my way.
Bimmy, Black Just, and Babywise look at each other questioningly while Puerto Rican
Righteous grins maniacally.
PRINCE
Does anyone here object to Supreme's wishes?
BLACK JUST
You can't just change everything up. We got ways. We do shit ways that
work, that 'Preme put in place.
PRINCE
I don't care. My uncle put me in charge, and I'm doing it my way. Any
objections?
Prince looks around, seeking any challenge to the authority he is asserting. He sees none.
PRINCE
Since that's settled, I got some changes I want to implement. I'm not
trying to hear no bullshit. Don't worry about 'Preme, that's my fam, my
blood. I'll deal with him.
BLACK JUST
No offense, Prince, but this ain't how 'Preme wanted it to go down.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yeah, Just and Fat Pete wasn't suppose to make no move on my man
neither. And you see what got him. It's Prince's way or the highway.
PRINCE
Look, you all, it is what it is. 'Preme left me in charge. Do what you
want, but hear me out at least.
INT. PRINCE'S APARTMENT - NIGHT
Prince and Puerto Rican Righteous sit in the apartment PLAYING NFL Madden Football
on the Sega Genesis.
75
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Did you see the look on Just's face when you told him you were forming a
security team and I was heading it?
Prince laughs and Puerto Rican Righteous does also. The game SIGNALS a touchdown
for Prince's team. Puerto Rican Righteous looks pissed, but only momentarily.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I thought he was gonna pull rank on you right there, word.
Prince SHUTS OFF the game and turns to Puerto Rican Righteous.
PRINCE
You ready to do this, B? I got some ideas.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I was bom ready. I'm down for whatever. You know I always got your
back. You my man for life.
PRINCE
You got to get that security team together? I'm serious about that.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Have I ever let you down, kid? I got some people in mind. C-Just and
them.
Prince nods his head.
PRINCE
You know Black Just is gonna mn to see Preme at Rikers. I got to go see
him, too. Let him know how it's going down.
Prince stands up and bumps fists with Puerto Rican Righteous.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - HALLWAY
Puerto Rican Righteous heads to the rooftop. He stops and checks his watch. As he
continues to the Stairwell, he sees Precious down the hall. She sees him and waves.
Precious is with her father, Pedro.
PEDRO
Who you waving to, mija? Is that your boyfriend?
76
PRECIOUS
No, Papi. Just a friend.
PEDRO
You need to have more friends like him instead of all those morenos.
PRECIOUS
Don't worry, Papi. No morenos for me.
Puerto Rican Righteous walks up to Precious and Pedro.
PRECIOUS
Hey.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What's up, girl? How you doing, sir?
PEDRO
OK, OK.
Pedro stands there smiling. Precious waits anxiously, and Puerto Rican Righteous looks
as if he wants to leave.
PEDRO
Mija, this is the boy you need to be dating. You're Puerto Rican, right?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yes, sir.
PEDRO
Do you find me mija bonita?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Muy bonita, senor.
PEDRO
See, that's great. We gonna do it like the old country, mija. I'll find a
suitable hombre for you.
PRECIOUS
Papi, that's Ernesto. He's my friend.
77
PEDRO
Your friend, your friend. Mija, you need to go out with this boy.
Pedro smiles and nods at Puerto Rican Righteous and leaves.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What was that all about?
PRECIOUS
My dad is loco. He don't like me dating blacks.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What about Prince?
PRECIOUS
What about him? He ain't my man.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Who is your man then? You sure was making eyes at him with all that
"Call me" bullshit.
PRECIOUS
I know, but maybe I should go out with you. That's what my dad wants.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Is that what you want?
PRECIOUS
I don't know. I like Prince, but my family wouldn't approve because he's
black.
INT. RIKERS ISLAND VISITING ROOM- DAY
Black Just sits in the prison visiting room. Supreme is being led out by guards to visit
with him. Black Just stands and embraces Supreme.
BLACK JUST
What up, God?
SUPREME
Peace. What's good? I didn't expect to see you this soon. What's wrong?
78
BLACK JUST
Prince.
SUPREME
Prince?
BLACK JUST
He's gone off the reservation, 'Preme.
SUPREME
What you mean, Just?
BLACK JUST
He got a security team, rooftop sentinels with walkie-talkies, butt-naked
packagers. He's changing it all up.
SUPREME
Word?
BLACK JUST
Word.
SUPREME
Tell that nigga to come and see me.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - COURTYARD - DAY
Babywise stands with his workers, supervising as they serve customers in broad daylight.
A steady stream of fiends and crackheads filter in to exchange money for the color-coded
crack vials. Babywise looks up, his attention drawn to the rooftops.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - ROOFTOP - DAY
Young kids patrol the rooftop with walkie-talkies, binoculars, and black hoodies pulled
up over their heads.
KID #1 looks in his binoculars and TALKS into his walkie-talkie.
79
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - COURTYARD - DAY
WORKER #1 holds a walkie-talkie to his ear.
KID #1 (O.S. through walkie-talkie)
Yo, kid, tell Baby you got rollers coming through.
WORKER #1
All right, bet.
Worker #1 walks over to Babywise and whispers in his ear. Babywise nods.
BABYWISE
Shut it down, Jake rolling.
The pitchers and servers disappear from the block with the dmgs and money, heading up
into the projects. The fiends and crackheads walk away, seemingly going about their
business. Babywise and a couple of his other workers lean against the wall.
EXT. THE BOULEVARD OUTSIDE BAISLEY PROJECTS - DAY
A police car ROLLS up the street. Two policemen look around, scanning the
neighborhood block. They roll to a stop in front of the drug spot and glare at Babywise,
who smiles at them and waves. COP #1 shakes his head, and COP #2 picks up his radio
and calls into the station.
COP #2
No drug activity at Baisley as reported, signing off.
The policemen drive off. Babywise smiles even more.
BABYWISE
(to himself)
Maybe Prince knows what he's doing.
He looks up the block to make sure the cop car is gone and nods to Worker #1.
WORKER #1
(into walkie-talkie)
All clear.
KID #1 (O.S. through walkie-talkie)
All clear. They're gone.
BABYWISE
Back to work. We open for business.
INT. PACKAGING APARTMENT - NIGHT
Several women sit naked at a long glass table. Piles of crack cocaine nuggets and
yellow-top vials are on the table. The women put the crack pieces into the vials.
WOMAN #1
This crazy nigga got us working 24/7. 'Preme ain't mn no shit like that.
And he got us naked too. Girl this nigga, Prince, is crazy.
WOMAN #2
You said it, girl. What happened to the good old days?
Bimmy stands in the background, watching the naked woman work. An intercom
BUZZES and the light on it BLINKS. Bimmy goes to the intercom.
BIMMY
Yeah? All right, hold on.
Bimmy goes to the door of the apartment, UNCHAINS all the
locks and lets Prince in. All the women look up and wave at Prince.
WOMAN #1
Hey, bossman.
She juts her chest up at Prince as she greets him.
PRINCE
How's it going?
BIMMY
Production is up. We're doing twice as much and no product is
disappearing.
PRINCE
That's why we got to keep these crackhead bitches naked.
81
Bimmy and Prince smile at each other.
EXT. BAISLEY COURTYARD - NIGHT
Puerto Rican Righteous is holding court with his new recmits. A crew of five dudes
stand around him, listening: C-Just, Pookie, Big C, Knowledge, and Serious.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
We handle security for the team.
C-JUST
What you mean, like bouncers?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Nah, B. We like Green Berets, feel me? We handle all problems,
disputes, internal and external, before they happen if we can. A
muthafucka got a problem with the team, we handle it, you feel me?
The security team nods their heads.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You all need to be locked and loaded at all times. Have your beepers on
you because when we roll, we rolling, no questions asked. When I beep,
you meet me here and be ready to put in work. All right? This is how
Prince wants it.
The security team members nod their heads, and check their beepers and their guns.
They get up to leave. Prince walks up, nodding to the guys. He waits for them to leave.
PRINCE
We got a problem. Some drive-bys on our spots over on the strip.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Drive-bys? In New York? What's up with that? I thought that was some
West Coast shit.
PRINCE
Not really, B. That shit's from Al Capone.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Word?
82
PRINCE
Word to 'Preme. You seen that joint, Scarface?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
With Tony Montana, you fucking cockroach. That shit is dope.
PRINCE
Nah, B. The original. The one with Tony Montana is a remake. That
shit's about Al Capone. I used to watch all those joints growing up with
'Preme. But fuck that, get the security team over to the strip. Them
niggas in a four-door white Caddy. Wait on them niggas, you heard? And
blast them. Send the message that don't no one fuck with the team's
business.
Puerto Rican Righteous nods his head and smiles his maniacal grin.
PRINCE
Handle that B.I. kid. I heard Black Just is looking for me. Probably with a
message from 'Preme.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What you gonna tell him?
PRINCE
It is what it is, B.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - OUTSIDE OF PRECIOUS' APARTMENT
Precious is carrying groceries, about to enter her apartment. She juggles the grocery bags
while she gets her key out to and opens the door.
PRECIOUS
Mami, I'm back. Ayuda me con los groceries.
TNT. PRECIOUS' FAMILY APARTMENT
Precious' parents and Puerto Rican Righteous sit at the kitchen table.
83
MARIA
In here, mija. Your friend esta aqui.
Precious raises her eyebrows questioningly and walks in the kitchen.
PRECIOUS
Ernesto, what are you doing here?
Puerto Rican Righteous stands up to explain but Pedro stops him.
PEDRO
Mija, Ernesto came here to ask our permission to take you out on a date.
Precious' parents , and Puerto Rican Righteous smile.
PRECIOUS
What?
Precious puts the groceries down.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yeah, you know, I was thinking about what you said, and I saw your dad
again and—
PRECIOUS
Wait. Hold on. Time out. When is it gonna be about what I want?
Precious mns out of the kitchen, Pedro, Puerto Rican Righteous, and Maria perplexed.
MARIA
Mija, wait!
She mns after her daughter, and looks back at the two men.
MARIA
You and your meddling.
Pedro shrugs his shoulders and looks to Puerto Rican Righteous.
PEDRO
Women, can't live with them, can't live without them. Come back later,
Ernesto. She'll come to her senses.
84
INT. - PRINCE'S APARTMENT - NIGHT
Prince lounges on his white leather sofa with his feet kicked up on the glass coffee table
reading a book, Improvised Sabotage Techniques. An assortment of other books are on
the coffee table: Disguise Methods, Body Armor, Countersurveillance, and Car Kits and
Modifications. The intercom BUZZES. Prince gets up, looks out the peep hole, and
unlocks the door to let Black Just in.
BLACK JUST
What up, kid?
PRINCE
The block still pumping?
BLACK JUST
Like a machine, kid. You uncle would be proud.
PRINCE
But he wants me to come see him, right?
BLACK JUST
Yeah, kid, but it's nothing.
PRINCE
You don't got to sugarcoat it for me, Just.
BLACK JUST
Nah, really, kid. It's all good. He just wants to talk about how you
handling shit.
PRINCE
Yeah, I figured. But you know I'm not just doing me. This is all for us.
For the team.
BLACK JUST
Just listen to what the man says. The Supreme Team is like his baby, you
feel me?
Prince nods.
PRINCE
All right. I got you. I'll go tomorrow.
85
BLACK JUST
Good.
Black Just gets up to leave and turns back.
BLACK JUST
I almost forgot, there's a young mami asking for you down on the block.
Prince looks up.
BLACK JUST
Said her name was Precious. You want me to send her up?
Prince looks off in a far away gaze, then turns back to Black Just and nods.
PRINCE
Yeah, send her up.
EXT. 118th STREET AND FOCH BOULEVARD - THE STRIP - LATE NIGHT
Puerto Rican Righteous and the security team sit in a black mini-van looking down the
block. They are armed for war with Glocks, Mac-10's, and sawed-off shotguns. They
wear black fatigues, with black ski masks on their heads ready to be pulled down, black
gloves, bulletproof vests, and black Timberland boots. They watch the spot across the
street where the workers serve fiends in the semidarkness, illuminated only by the street
lamp on the block.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Where the fuck these niggas at? I'm ready to blast a muthafucka.
C-Just looks down at the Mac-10 in Puerto Rican Righteous's hand.
C-JUST
What, you got a hot date or something, B?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You could say that. I'm going to see my future wife.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - HALLWAY
86
Precious stands at Prince's apartment door.
PRECIOUS
What the fuck am I doing? Oh well, here goes nothing.
She presses the BUZZER.
INTERCUT PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Puerto Rican Righteous and his crew are in the mini-van. Puerto Rican Righteous looks
down the block.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Here they come.
The crew pulls down their ski masks and readies their weapons. A four-door white
Cadillac ROLLS down the block.
Prince OPENS the door to his apartment.
PRECIOUS
Hey, can I come in?
Puerto Rican Righteous and his crew are in the mini-van.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Not yet, wait, not yet.
The white Cadillac CREEPS closer. Two arms with guns point out the window toward
the dmg spot.
Prince takes Precious in his arms and kisses her. He shuts the door and leads her to the
bedroom.
Puerto Rican Righteous and the crew JUMP out of the mini-van's sliding door, guns
ready and pointed at their adversaries.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Go, go, go!
Prince takes off Precious' shirt. They jostle around to get their clothes off.
Guns FIRE. Puerto Rican Righteous mns toward the white Cadillac FIRING the Mac 10
while PELTING the Cadillac and its occupants with bullets.
87
Prince and Precious have intercourse. Both of them gasp, gmnt, and moan.
The whole security team SHOOTS the white Cadillac. They scream in delight. Puerto
Rican Righteous screams the loudest.
Prince and Precious are both reaching their orgasms.
Puerto Rican Righteous and the security team have stopped firing. The Cadillac ROLLS
down the street and CRASHES into a parked car. People and workers come out of hiding
and look on with amazement. Puerto Rican Righteous raises his Mac 10, dances in the
street, and FIRES a burst straight up into the air.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yeah!
Prince and Precious orgasm simultaneously.
PRINCE/PRECIOUS
Yeah!
END INTERCUT
INT. PRISON VISITING ROOM- RIKER'S ISLAND - DAY
Prince is visiting Supreme.
SUPREME
What I'm saying is there are proper protocols and procedures to observe.
PRINCE
I know, 'Preme, but we're making more money. Sales and production are
up.
SUPREME
That's all good, but what you fail to understand is I've been doing this a
longtime. You just don't operate this way. You got the team on blast.
PRINCE
Yeah, we're on blast. We're bubbling. Making more money than ever.
What's wrong with that?
88
SUPREME
Nothing, but how long do you think it will last? You can lay low, not
attract attention and have a long, successful mn, or you can bum real
bright, blow up real big and real quick. But then you attract too much
attention, and then what?
PRINCE
I feel you. I do, but, 'Preme, I got this. I didn't even want this, but you
forced it on me. So let me do it my way.
Prince gets up to leave. Supreme sits there shaking his head.
INT. APARTMENT - STASH HOUSE - NIGHT
Prince, Puerto Rican Righteous, Bimmy, and Babywise sit at a table with piles of cash.
There is a money-counting machine. They put the bills in the machine and it COUNTS
them. They mbberband and package the money, all smiles, enjoying themselves, and
joking. Puerto Rican Righteous and Prince laugh.
Bimmy goes in a box and holds up some bulletproof vests. They fit one on Prince.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Gotta be prepared, bossman. Ready for anything.
Puerto Rican Righteous breaks out a black baseball cap also.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I got you this, too. It's bulletproof.
Prince takes the cap and taps it on the front.
PRINCE
I don't need this shit.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You never know. Its better to be safe than sorry. There's a lot of haters
out there.
A large pile of dollar bills litter the floor.
BABYWISE
What we gonna do with all the singles?
89
PRINCE
I'll take care of that. Implement a new policy. No singles, no shorts. Tell
all the workers. We don't need all these dollar bills, and the fiends gotta
come correct with the money.
BABYWISE
No singles, no shorts. I like that. It's catchy.
Bimmy pulls Prince aside.
BIMMY
Did you tell him about that thing?
PRINCE
Oh yeah. Righteous, we got to take out this fool down on Foch Boulevard.
He's been robbing our workers.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
All right, bet. I'm on it. I gotta go see someone first, and then I'm on it.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - HALLWAY - AFTERNOON
Puerto Rican Righteous stands at the door of Precious's apartment, hesitant, trying to
decide if he will knock on the door. It OPENS, and Precious stands there.
PRECIOUS
Righteous, what's up? What are you doing here?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Well, you know, I thought we had—
Precious' father hears the exchange and hurries to intercede.
PEDRO
I told him to come, mija. For your date.
PRECIOUS
My what?
PEDRO
Your date with Ernesto.
PRECIOUS
Papi!
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Maybe I should go.
PRECIOUS/PEDRO
No.
PRECIOUS
I mean, wait.
Maria comes to the door.
MARIA
Give it a try, mija. That's all were asking. Ernesto is a nice Puerto Rican
boy. You know your papi hates seeing you with all the morenos.
PRECIOUS
OK Mami, Papi. Just this once.
Puerto Rican Righteous and Precious' parents smile.
PRECIOUS
Come on, Ernesto.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - ON THE BLOCK - NIGHT
Prince walks through the projects, C-Just and Big C in tow. They are carrying trash bags
full of dollar bills. Prince stops in the middle of the street, opens one of the trash bags
full of money, and starts giving piles of the dollar bills out to people.
OLD WOMAN
Thank you, son. Thank you. God bless the Supreme Team.
A couple of kids mn up.
KID #2
Let us get some, Mister Prince. Thanks!
Prince smiles as C-Just and Big C hand out more cash. Two crackheads linger, not
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wanting to step up to ask for any money. Prince sees them.
PRINCE
You and you come here.
The two crackheads are surprised at being noticed. They walk over.
PRINCE
Take this. Go get something to eat. Get yourselves cleaned up.
Prince hands them a big wad of singles. Prince grabs the rest of the money and throws it
all up in the air. Kids and residents hurry to catch the dollar bills.
WORKING MAN
Thanks a lot, but I need a job.
PRINCE
C-Just, hook this guy up with Babywise.
WORKING MAN
Thanks man, I won't let you down.
A couple of Supreme Team workers come up wearing red jackets with "Supreme Team"
written on the back. They turn around to let Prince see. Prince laughs and notices more
of his workers milling around with the jackets. Prince holds up his hands in wonderment,
shmgging it off. He walks to the front of the projects and sees a sign saying "SUPREME
TEAM" posted on the lawn in front of the projects. An OLD MAN walks by and spits at
the sign. Big C and C-Just take offense.
BIGC
Yo, oldhead, what the fuck?
OLD MAN
Fuck you, young niggas, killing your people with crack. I don't support
you. You're the devil.
Big C and C-Just look to Prince.
PRINCE
Leave him be.
The Old Man walks off, kicking dollar bills out of his way. A moment later a MAN
walks up, gun in hand.
MAN
Hey, Prince.
Prince turns. Before anyone can react he is SHOT twice in the chest. The man runs off as
Prince falls.
C-JUST
Yo, get that nigga!
Big C starts mnning after the Man, who mns into people trying to get away. A crowd
gathers around Prince.
C-JUST
Back up, give him some room!
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - COURTYARD - NIGHT
Precious and Puerto Rican Righteous sit on a bench.
PRECIOUS
Righteous, I really had a nice time.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Are you sure? I mean—
PRECIOUS
No, I'm glad we had this time together. You're not who I thought you
were.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What do you mean?
PRECIOUS
Well, ever since school I thought you were crazy. That's what everybody
said.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I'm only crazy for you.
PRECIOUS
Don't say that, Righteous.
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PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Why not?
PRECIOUS
Because Prince and I...
Precious looks over Puerto Rican Righteous's shoulder to see Pookie running up.
POOKIE
Righteous, they shot Prince!
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What?
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - ON THE BLOCK - NIGHT
Puerto Rican Righteous and Precious mn up to Prince, who is sitting up, obviously in
pain. C-Just and Big C are at his side.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What the fuck happened?
PRINCE
Somebody tried to murk me, B.
Prince rips open his shirt to show the bulletproof vest he's wearing, with two bullets
embedded in it.
PRINCE
Point blank range. I'm glad you gave me this. Saved my life kid.
PRECIOUS
Are you OK?
PRINCE
I'm OK, mami.
Precious gives Prince a hug.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Who did it?
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Prince shakes his head.
BIGC
I don't know, he got away.
Prince looks up to Puerto Rican Righteous.
PRINCE
Where were you, B? I needed you.
Puerto Rican Righteous looks at Precious, who looks at Prince. Prince shakes his head.
PRINCE
No way.
EXT. SOUTHSIDE OF JAMAICA, QUEENS - FOCH BOULEVARD - DAY
We see the street sign for Foch Boulevard. Prince rides in the passenger seat in Bimmy's
baby blue BMW as they creep down the block.
PRINCE
You know what this dude looks like?
BIMMY
Yeah, I know. But how you feeling, kid? You just took two to the chest.
PRINCE
Yeah, for real, but I'm good. A little sore, but its all good, you heard.
What doesn't kill you makes you stronger, right?
BIMMY
I feel you on that. I feel you.
Scenes of the Southside of Jamaica, Queens: the HUSTLE and BUSTLE of the area.
BIMMY
You put the black Mercedes in the shop.
PRINCE
Yeah, I'm getting some upgrades.
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BIMMY
Like what? New stereo system?
Prince
(smiling)
Nah, B. Like James Bond upgrades.
BIMMY
Word to 'Preme.
PRINCE
Word to 'Preme, B.
Bimmy shakes his head and then looks up, slowing the car down and pulling up to the
curb. He looks out at the street, recognizing someone.
BIMMY
That's him, right there.
Prince looks at the SKINNY DUDE Bimmy is pointing to and gets out his cell phone to
call Puerto Rican Righteous.
EXT. FOCH BOULEVARD - DAY
The Skinny Dude is in a huddle on the block with two women. The three laugh and
chatter.
EXT. FOCH BOULEVARD - BIMMY'S BMW
Prince (into phone)
Where you at, B?
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - DAY
Puerto Rican Righteous lounges in the Baisley Project courtyard drinking a forty ounce
malt liquor and smoking a joint with the security team.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
(into phone)
In front of the projects. What's up?
INTERCUT PRINCE
PRINCE
(into phone)
I'm clocking this kid as we speak on Foch Boulevard, around the block
from Bimmy's spot.
PUERT RICAN RIGHTEOUS
(into phone)
The stick-up kid?
PRINCE
Dumb nigga just standing there out in the open.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I'm on it. Just give me a minute.
Puerto Rican Righteous JUMPS into action with the security team. They all get into a
black minivan.
END INTERCUT
EXT. FOCH BOULEVARD - INSIDE MINIVAN
The security team is war ready with black outfits and weapons loaded.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I got this. You all just back me up.
Puerto Rican Righteous gets out of the minivan and WALKS up to the Skinny Dude in
broad daylight with people walking by on the busy block. Prince and Bimmy sit in the
BMW across the street. Prince nods at the Skinny Dude. Puerto Rican Righteous raises
the gun to the Skinny Dude's temple and BLASTS his gun one time. The two girls
scream and scatter as people hurry to get away from the murder scene. The Skinny
Dude's body slumps forward and drops, blood pooling beneath him. Puerto Rican
Righteous looks around. Prince motions for him to get of there, and Bimmy pulls off,
tires SQUEALING. Puerto Rican Righteous runs to the minivan and yells from the rush
of the kill as the minivan TAKES OFF and weaves in and out of traffic. Puerto Rican
Righteous looks to C-Just and the other security team members.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Now that's how you kill somebody, you get right up on the muthafucka,
and booyah! Blow his brains all over the sidewalk in broad daylight.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - COURTYARD
Prince is in the courtyard playing chess against multiple partners. His bodyguards stand
close by with walkie-talkie earbuds going to their ears, sunglasses on and scanning the
area with their hands on their pieces. Numerous Supreme Team Members in their red
jackets are in the area playing cards and shooting dice.
EXT. FOCH BOULEVARD - DAY
An unmarked police car ROLLS up and stops in front of the projects. DETECTIVE
JONES and DETECTIVE SMITH are in the car.
DETECTIVE JONES
How do you want to do this?
DETECTIVE SMITH
Just follow my lead.
The two detectives get out of the car.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - COURTYARD - DAY
Prince looks up from his game, and his bodyguard whispers in his ear and points to the
approaching cops. Prince gets up to meet them, watching them as they approach.
Supreme Team workers and residents surround and shout obscenities at them as they
walk toward Prince.
PRINCE
Can I help you, gentlemen?
The two detectives look him up and down.
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DETECTIVE JONES
So, you're the new kid on the block. Do you know the mles?
PRINCE
I don't know what you're talking about.
DETECTIVE JONES
Don't play stupid. Supreme taught you better than that. Where's Black
Just?
PRINCE
What is this all about?
DETECTIVE SMITH
It's about you taking care of business. Go and talk to Supreme. Tell him
Smitty came by. Here's the new number.
Detective Smith hands Prince a piece of paper.
DETECTIVE SMITH
We need that every week.
The two detective turn and leave.
INT. PRINCE'S BLACK MERCEDES - NIGHT
Prince and Puerto Rican Righteous speed through the city in Prince's black Mercedes.
The car engine HUMS and GRINDS as Prince changes gears and weaves through traffic,
laughing with Puerto Rican Righteous.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
This car is like that.
PRINCE
For one hundred G's in upgrades it better be.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Fat Pete wouldn't even recognize it.
PRINCE
Fuck that nigga. Watch this.
Prince pushes a button on the dash, and SMOKE comes out the back of the car. Puerto
Rican Righteous looks back to see cars behind them SWERVING on the road due to the
smoke billowing all around them. Prince pushes another button and oil SPRAYS out the
back of the car. The cars behind them weave, CRASH, and put their brakes on,
SLIDING.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You James Bond, nigga. For real.
Prince nods his head and smiles. He drives around a curve, pulls down a side street, and
parks.
PRINCE
We got problems, B.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What? More stick up kids, somebody stealing money? I got it. Give me
the 411.
PRINCE
Nah, B. Cops. They trying to shake me down.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What?
Prince hands Puerto Rican Righteous the piece of paper Detective Smith gave him.
PRINCE
They said they need that every week.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Fifty grand? That's crazy! What you want me to do? Hit'em?
PRINCE
Nah, B. I gotta go talk to 'Preme. Let me think. Don't do nothing yet.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
All right, bet. Anyway, I wanted to holla at you.
PRINCE
About what?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Precious.
PRINCE
What about her?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I've been hanging out with her.
PRINCE
Yeah.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I met her parents.
PRINCE
Word.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I think I love her, kid.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - DAY
Precious stands in the hallway that leads to Prince's apartment, looking up and down the
hall. The elevator bell RINGS, and Prince walks out of the elevator. He looks around
cautiously to make sure all is safe for his passage into his apartment. He sees Precious.
Prince
(to himself)
What's this bitch want?
Precious sees him and waits. Prince tries to walk right by her.
PRECIOUS
Wait.
Precious puts her hand on Prince's shoulder. Prince shrugs her hand off him.
PRINCE
Get off me, bitch.
101
PRECIOUS
So now I'm a bitch.
They make eye contact. Prince breaks it and attempts to go.
PRECIOUS
Just let me talk to you for a minute.
Prince turns to face her.
PRINCE
There ain't nothing to say. If you with my man then you're with my man.
End of story.
PRECIOUS
It's more complicated than that.
PRINCE
How's that? It is what it is, so just leave it at that.
PRECIOUS
But Prince, I love you.
Prince shakes his head, walks to his apartment, opens the door and enters, leaving
Precious in the hallway. A tear mns down her face.
EXT. JAMAICA, QUEENS - THE STRIP - NIGHT
Prince drives his black Mercedes down the strip, with Puerto Rican Righteous in the
passenger seat. They listen to some late 80's HIP HOP with the BASS turned up. People
on the street shout out Prince's name as they drive by, cmising so that everyone can see
it's them. Supreme Team members dressed in their red jackets holler, and all the females
shout at them down telling them to stop. Prince and Puerto Rican Righteous laugh and
watch the girls on the strip as they drive by.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Look at shorty right there, damn.
Prince looks at the girl Puerto Rican Righteous points toward. We see her lips and
fingers beckoning to Prince.
102
PRINCE
Nah, Righteous. She ain't for me.
Puerto Rican Righteous hangs halfway out of the car window.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Hey mami, show us what you go
The girl bends over, and sticks her rear in the air for all to see. Some guys on the block
start CLAPPING as Prince and Puerto Rican Righteous drive on, laughing.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
She laid it out there for you, homie.
Prince just shrugs as they drive on down the block. All the passersby on the sidewalk
look and point in their direction. We see a billboard that says "YOU TOO CAN BE A
KING." Puerto Rican Righteous points to it.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
That's what the fuck I'm talking about, B. That's where it's at. We ghetto
royalty. We the kings of the southside.
Prince nods, thinking and driving. The lights from the town are alive all around them.
Parked on the street, unnoticed by Prince and Puerto Rican Righteous, are Detectives
Smith and Jones. Detective Smith HONKS his horn to get Prince's attention. When
Prince looks over, Detective Smith mbs his fingers together signifying money. Prince
looks away and drives on.
DETECTIVE JONES
You think he'll pay?
DETECTIVE SMITH
He better pay, or else.
Detective Smith forms his hand like a gun, points it toward Prince's Mercedes, and
makes a recoiling motion.
DETECTIVE SMITH
Boom!
EXT. CARMICHAEL'S DINER-NIGHT
103
Prince and Puerto Rican Righteous are in the Mercedes, parked outside Carmichael's
Diner, behind Baisley Projects.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What you thinking about, kid?
PRINCE
Ain't nothing.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Nah, for real, this is me and you. What's up?
PRINCE
Yo, B. You know like when you think you got something but you really
don't?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What you mean?
PRINCE
Like you got something, its in your grasp, but you just don't got it. Not
really. It's there, but you just can't close your fingers around it.
Puerto Rican Righteous thinks for a minute and then nods
his head.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yeah, kid. I know what you mean.
PRINCE
Word?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yeah, you talking about power. The team is yours, kid. 'Preme is in jail.
It's all yours, babyboy.
PRINCE
That's not exactly what I meant.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What the fuck you talking about then?
Puerto Rican Righteous bursts out laughing, and Prince joins him. They are two old
friends sharing an absurd joke. Puerto Rican Righteous stops laughing and looks down
104
the block in front of the projects. We see an unmarked police car. Detective Smith and
Detective Jones are in the car and leaning into the car talking to them is a SLIM BLACK
KID.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
MuthaFUCKA. You see that?
Prince looks and sees the Slim Black Kid talking to the detectives. The Slim Black Kid
gets in the car, and it PULLS away. Prince pulls out also, creeping in pursuit of the
unmarked police car.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You know who that kid is, right?
Prince nods his head.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Wait 'til Bimmy finds out about this.
Prince keeps following.
PRINCE
We ain't telling that nigga nothing.
The detective's car pulls into the precinct. Prince veers off to a side street and they watch
as Detective Smith, Detective Jones, and the Slim Black Kid get out of the car and go
into the precinct.
PRINCE
We got to find out what that little nigga is telling them.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECT ROOFTOP - DAY
CLASSICAL MUSIC plays loudly. The rooftop sentinels are on their job, talking into
their walkie-talkies and looking into their binoculars. They walk up and down the
rooftops taking in the surrounding streets and looking for any sign of police or anything
out of the ordinary.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - JAMAICA BOULEVARD - DAY
105
On the street level Supreme Team workers are going about their business, selling crack to
the fiends. The CLASSICAL MUSIC still plays loudly. The open-air dmg market is in
full swing as money and dmgs change hands. Runners move in and out, taking bundles
of money to the stash houses inside the projects.
INT. RIKER'S ISLAND - CELLBLOCK - DAY
Supreme is being chained up and escorted by guards. The CLASSICAL MUSIC still
plays.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - STAIRWELL
The runner runs up the stairs with the money, and knocks at a door. The door opens, and
another worker takes the money and gives the runner another bundle of crack.
CLASSICAL MUSIC still plays.
INT. RIKER'S ISLAND - DAY
Supreme is led to an interrogation room in his chains, guards on all sides. The door to the
interrogation room opens. CLASSICAL MUSIC still plays.
INT. APARTMENT AT BAISLEY PROJECTS - DAY
Inside the apartment SOME WORKERS, including the one at the door, gather all the
money together in Hefty trash bags , and count it using several money-counting
machines. Black Just oversees the operation. As the money is counted, it's placed into
big army duffel bags. There is a row often of the duffel bags full of cash. Black Just
checks all the bags and walks out of the apartment. CLASSICAL MUSIC still plays.
INT. RIKER'S ISLAND - INTERROGATION ROOM
Supreme is led into the interrogation room where Detective Smith and Detective Jones
wait for him. CLASSICAL MUSIC plays.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - HALLWAY
Black Just walks down the hallway, through a stairwell and walks down the hall until he
is at Prince's apartment door. He goes to push on the intercom. CLASSICAL MUSIC
plays.
INT. RIKER' S ISLAND - INTERROGATION ROOM
Supreme is disgusted when he sees who it is, and Detective Smith waves his hands to
calm Supreme. CLASSICAL MUSIC plays.
INT. PRINCE'S APARTMENT - DAY
Prince is in his apartment, waving his hands around like a conductor to an orchestra as
the CLASSICAL MUSIC still plays. Prince notices his intercom blinking. He goes to
the door and looks out the peephole. We see Black Just. Prince opens the door. He lets
Black Just pass and follows him down the hallway.
INT. RIKER'S ISLAND - INTERROGATION ROOM
Supreme is in the interrogation room with the two detectives. CLASSICAL MUSIC
plays.
DETECTIVE SMITH
We got problems.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - COURTYARD
The CLASSICAL MUSIC RESUMES after Detective Smith talks. Numerous Supreme
Team workers, supervised by Prince and Black Just, carry all the duffle bags of money
and put them into a minivan that pulls up to the curb. We see the rooftop sentinels
overseeing the operation. We see security team members with Uzi submachine guns
watching and guarding the proceedings. Puerto Rican Righteous and C-Just are in the
minivan with the money. Prince and Black Just get in Prince's black Mercedes and
follow the minivan as it pulls off.
107
INT. RIKER'S ISLAND - INTERROGATION ROOM
Supreme, Detective Smith, and Detective Jones are in the interrogation room.
CLASSICAL MUSIC plays.
DETECTIVE SMITH
Your nephew has significantly enlarged the operation.
Supreme nods.
DETECTIVE SMITH
You've been paying us for protection and to look the other way for years,
but Prince, he's attracting too much attention.
DETECTIVE JONES
And that little fuck is not paying us our money.
DETECTIVE SMITH
Chill out, Jonesy. Supreme is a business man. He knows what we are
here for.
Supreme nods.
SUPREME
What you want me to do?
DETECTIVE SMITH
Just talk to the kid. Talk some sense into him. Get him to pay us our
money so we can keep the heat off his back. And believe me, with the
noise he is making in the streets there's going to be some serious heat.
Supreme nods.
INT. BANK
Prince smiles and shakes hands with the bank manager. We see Prince's workers
bringing in all the bags of money as other bank customers look on. CLASSICAL
MUSIC still playing. Prince smiles, and the music STOPS.
INT. FAMILY OF PRECIOUS APARTMENT - DAY
Precious is in the apartment with Maria. They are in the kitchen washing dishes.
MARIA
Mija, are you and Ernesto getting serious?
PRECIOUS
Why do you ask that, Mami?
MARIA
Just wondering, mija. You're getting to that age where its time to start a
familia of your own.
PRECIOUS
What are you talking about, Mami?
MARIA
Getting married, mija.
PRECIOUS
Married? Are you crazy, Mami!
MARIA
It's what your father wants.
Precious tries to laugh off the suggestion, but her Father walks in the kitchen. Precious's
parents smile at her while she cringes but tries to smile with them.
EXT. BLACK MINIVAN ON STREET - DAY
Tires SCREECH as a black minivan pulls away from the curb and into traffic.
INT. BLACK MINIVAN - DAY
Puerto Rican Righteous, C-Just, Knowledge, Pookie, and Big C do another check that
their guns are loaded and pull their ski masks on, adjusting their bulletproof vests. They
are all in black fatigues.
EXT. JAMAICA BOULEVARD - DAY
The Slim Black Kid who was with the two detectives the day before walks down the
street. Street SOUNDS of cars and pedestrians fill our ears as the Slim Black Kid
maneuvers through the crowds of people on the busy street. He goes into a bodega.
INT. BODEGA - DAY
A TELEVISION is on in the background. The Slim Black Kid gets a forty-ounce can of
beer, pays the store attendant, and leaves out the door.
EXT. JAMAICA BOULEVARD - QUEENS - DAY
The black minivan SCREECHES to a halt in front of the bodega where the Slim Black
Kid walks out of. The sliding van door opens and five men in black fatigues jump out
wearing ski masks and carrying Uzi submachine guns. Puerto Rican Righteous sticks his
Uzi in the Slim Black Kid's face. They pull him into the mini-van and take off.
INT. RIKER'S ISLAND - VISITING ROOM - DAY
Supreme sits with Prince.
SUPREME
I got a visit yesterday.
PRINCE
Who, Black Just?
SUPREME
Nah, two detectives.
PRINCE
Word. What they want?
SUPREME
You know what they wanted.
PRINCE
No, I don't.
SUPREME
Don't fuck around, Prince. Pay them their money.
INT. APARTMENT - NIGHT
The Slim Black Kid screams as we hear a SIZZLING sound. The security team is all
around him.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What the fuck did you tell the cops?
SLIM BLACK KID
What? I don't know...
Puerto Rican Righteous nods, and Pookie, hot curling iron in hand, grins. C-Just, Ace,
and Knowledge hold the kid down. His pants are pulled down and Pookie puts the hot
curling iron on him. The Slim Black Kid SCREAMS as it SIZZLES. Puerto Rican
Righteous holds an Uzi to the Slim Black Kid's head.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Tell me what the fuck you told them.
SLIM BLACK KID
Please! Stop ... please. I'll tell you anything, no more ... please!
Puerto Rican Righteous nods his head, and Pookie RAISES the hot curling iron so his
victim can see it. The Slim Black Kid is near hysterical but ready to talk.
INT. PRINCE'S APARTMENT
Puerto Rican Righteous and Prince are talking, sitting on the white leather sofas.
PRINCE
That kid was working with the police?
Ill
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Ever since he was picked up on a gun charge a week ago. He said they
were all up on him about the Supreme Team's activities. Wanted to know
where we store the cash and dmgs.
PRINCE
What he tell them?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
He knew some of Bimmy's spots, but that's it.
PRINCE
You cut him loose?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Pretty much. He's swimming with the fishes.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - BASKETBALL COURTS - NIGHT
Two teams are on the court playing basketball, red verse black. SKIP TO MY LOU, a
player from the black team spins with the ball and throws down a THUNDEROUS dunk.
The crowd roars in delight. The bleachers are packed with fans cheering on the two
teams. Numerous Supreme Team members in the crowd are watching in their red
Supreme Team jackets. Off on the perimeter several sentinels with walkie-talkies glance
around, keeping the area secure. The crowd is wild and loud, yelling obscenities and
encouragement to their favorite players and teams. The referee, a thirty-something mildmannered man blows his whistle periodically and calls a foul. A banner above the
bleachers reads "SUPREME'S NIGHT INTERNATIONAL FASTBREAK FESTIVAL."
Puerto Rican Righteous sits among the security team watching the game.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
We at the Sniff tournament. Who thinks up this shit?
BIGC
What you mean, Righteous?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Sniff, as in cocaine. Get it. This fucking guy. All brawn, no brains.
C-Just and the other security team members laugh. Big C shrugs his shoulders. Puerto
Rican Righteous jumps up.
112
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Fuckin' ref! That's a bullshit call. Don't fuck up my money.
C-JUST
What you got on the game, Righteous?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
A hundred G's on the black team. That's my man, Skip to My Lou, with
the ball.
Skip to My Lou dribbles the ball down the court.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I'm about to take a hundred G's off Bimmy.
We see Bimmy in the adjacent bleacher, money clenched in his fist, cheering for the red
team. Skip to My Lou breaks toward the basket for a score. Puerto Rican Righteous
jumps up cheering.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
That's what the fuck I'm talking about! Punish that trash. Abuse them,
Skip. They can't check you.
Puerto Rican Righteous turns to C-Just and smiles.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I'm about to get paid, kid. Word to 'Preme.
Puerto Rican Righteous looks across the bleachers to Bimmy. We see the game clock
ticking down, and the score shows the black team winning by two points.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I'm taking all Bimmy's money. Fucking buster.
The point guard for the red team dribbles the ball slowly down the court, looking up at
the clock which is winding down with only 7 seconds left. The point guard yells for his
teammates to move to the other side of the court for an isolation play, and Skip to My
Lou covers him. The point guard keeps dribbling the ball, POUNDING it into the court.
Puerto Rican Righteous clenches a wad of hundred dollar bills in his hand. His crew is
all around him.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Check his ass Skip. D up. Don't fuck up my money, ref.
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The referee looks back momentarily at Puerto Rican Righteous. The whole crowd cheers
and goes wild. The referee watches the play unfold with the whistle in his mouth.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Check that nigga, bone up. Get my money.
The red team point guard fakes left and then right, looks up at the clock which shows one
second left, and pulls up and fires a three pointer from the top of the arc. We follow the
ball as it goes in the cylinder of the rim, rolls around a couple of times, and pops out.
Puerto Rican Righteous and his crew go wild. Bimmy looks dejected.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I won, I won, that's a hundred G's, baby! A hundred G's.
The whistle BLOWS, drawing Puerto Rican Righteous and his crew's attention back to
the court where the red team point guard is sprawled out on the court, and the referee
indicates a foul on the shot. The black team is outraged. The game is not over yet.
SKIP TO MY LOU
Man, fuck that, ref. That's a bullshit call. Game over.
The referee shakes his head no. Puerto Rican Righteous and his crew sit there in
disbelief. Bimmy smiles and glances at Puerto Rican Righteous who is getting enraged at
the call.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
That's bullshit ref, that wasn't no foul. Game over.
The referee looks over at Puerto Rican Righteous then proceeds to line the players up at
the foul line for the three free throws. The red team point guard walks up to the line to
takes the free throws. The net swishes as he makes one, then two. As he is ready to take
the third, a SHOT is fired. Puerto Rican Righteous stands in the middle of the court, gun
smoking. The referee is on the ground with a bullet hole through his head, blood seeping
onto the pavement. Everything is silent for a moment everyone present sits stunned by
what just occurred.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
That was a bullshit call, ref. You shouldn't have made it.
PANDEMONIUM breaks loose as players, spectators, and everyone watching the game
makes a break for it. Puerto Rican Righteous stands in the middle of the court and puts
his gun back in his waistband. He pulls out a cigarette and lights it. His crew comes and
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drags him off the court as people mn in different directions.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
It was a bad call, right? I can't let dude jack off my money.
C-JUST
Yeah, Righteous. Let's get outta here.
As they walk off we see the referee lying dead on the court, blood seeping out of his
head. The legs and feet of people running by him can be seen as everyone scurries to get
away.
INT. RESTAURANT - NIGHT
Precious, her parents, and Puerto Rican Righteous are having dinner at a classy
restaurant. A waiter approaches with a bottle of champagne, uncorks it, and pours
glasses for them.
PRECIOUS
Champagne? Are we celebrating something?
Puerto Rican Righteous looks to Precious' parents.
PEDRO
Mija, Ernesto has asked permission to marry you.
PRECIOUS
What?
Puerto Rican Righteous reaches into his jacket and gets out a little gift box. Puerto Rican
Righteous opens the box to reveal a ring with a big diamond on it. He hands the box to
Precious. Her parents smile.
PRECIOUS
I don't know what to say.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Just say yes.
MOM
Yeah, mija. Just say yes.
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EXT. THE CITY - PRINCE'S BLACK MERCEDES - NIGHT
The engine ROARS as Prince shifts gears and speeds up, cutting through traffic. Hip hop
PLAYS on the stereo as Prince bobs his head to the music. Prince runs a few red lights
and speeds up laughing, enjoying the power of his car. In the rearview mirror he sees an
unmarked cop car with a light in the window. He hears the SIREN.
PRINCE
Fuck.
He checks the rearview mirror again and sees that it's Detectives Smith and Jones. They
wave at him to pullover. He pulls over and turns the stereo off.
PRINCE
What the fuck do these jokers want?
Prince sits in the car and waits as the two detectives approach on both sides of the
Mercedes with their guns drawn.
DETECTIVE JONES
Put your hands up and keep them where we can see them. Stick them out
the driver's side window, and throw your car keys out.
Both detectives smile and have their guns pointed at Prince.
DETECTIVE SMITH
Either comply or we will be forced to act accordingly. That means do
what my partner says, or we'll blow you away, asshole.
Prince shakes his head and complies with the officers' directions, sticking his arms out
the window and THROWING his car keys onto the pavement. Detective Smith gets the
car keys while Jones keeps his gun aimed at Prince.
INT. POLICE STATION - INTERROGATION ROOM - NIGHT
Prince is handcuffed and sitting at a table. The door OPENS and the two detectives enter,
smiling.
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DETECTIVE SMITH
The majestic Prince, leader of the Supreme Team. You aren't so mighty
now, are you, Prince?
Both of the detectives laugh.
DETECTIVE SMITH
What's the matter, your highness? Cat got your tongue? Don't got
nothing to say? I know you're type. You're not so tough. All you fake-ass
ghetto gangsters talk in the end.
Prince tries to jump out of his chair at Detective Smith. Detective Jones restrains him,
though.
DETECTIVE SMITH
Struck a nerve there, huh buddy?
Prince spits in Detective Smith's face.
PRINCE
Fuck you.
Detective Smith wipes the spit off his face with a handkerchief and punches Prince in the
face while Jones holds him by the shoulders. Prince shmgs off the blow and shakes his
head as blood drips from his lip.
DECTECTIVE SMITH
Is that how you want it, ya little fuck?
PRINCE
Fuck you, you ain't got shit on me. I'll see you in the street.
DETECTIVE SMITH
Is that a threat, punk? I talked to Supreme. I know he told you to pay us
our money.
PRINCE
I ain't paying you shit. Fuck you.
Detective Jones releases Prince's shoulders and walks around in front of him, between
Detective Smith and Prince.
DETECTIVE JONES
Look, this isn't getting us anywhere. Why don't we start again, all right?
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He looks to his partner, who nods and then at Prince who shrugs.
DETECTIVE JONES
The reason we brought you in is because we need your help.
Prince laughs.
PRINCE
You want me to help you? Yeah, right. This is just a shakedown.
DETECTIVE JONES
No, really, we have reason to believe that one of your workers has been
kidnapped.
Detective Jones grabs a file on the table and takes out a photo. The photo shows the face
of the Slim Black Kid who was burned with a curling iron.
DETECTIVE JONES
Do you know this kid? We know he works for you.
Prince looks at the photo and shakes his head.
PRINCE
Never seen him before in my life.
Both detectives turn and look at each other, shaking their heads.
DETECTIVE JONES
We're trying to help you help yourself here, buddy. It's up to you. We can
do this however you want. You want to go hard? We can go hard. You
want to work with us, then we can work with you.
PRINCE
Like I said before, fuck you. I don't work with no fucking cops, and I ain't
paying you shit.
EXT. 113th PRECINCT IN SOUTH JAMAICA, QUEENS - NIGHT
Puerto Rican Righteous sits in Prince's black Mercedes outside the police station. We see
Prince's bmised face and lip as he walks out of the station. He smiles as he sees Puerto
Rican Righteous and his car.
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PRINCE
You got my car!
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You know how I do, kid. Just had to pay the impound fee.
Puerto Rican Righteous gets out of the driver's side and into the passenger side. Prince
gets in the driver's side.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Those fucking pigs put their hands on you, kid.
PRINCE
It ain't nothing. They'll get theirs.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Bet that. But you all right, B?
PRINCE
Yeah, I'm good. Never better.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What the fuck was that all about?
PRINCE
You know, the usual bullshit. I should of never got caught slipping like
that. I let Jake get up on me. I should've taken off like I wanted to. They
never would have caught me in this baby.
Prince pats the steering wheel. Puerto Rican Righteous nods in understanding.
PRINCE
Most people cause me trouble but this car is suppose to get me out of it,
you heard, B?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Word to 'Preme.
PRINCE
We about to take this shit to another level, B. You with that?
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PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You know it kid. I'm down for whatever.
INT. BANK - DAY
Prince is in the bank talking with the bank manager.The bank manager gives Prince some
papers to sign.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Real estate, huh?
PRINCE
We gotta diversify, B. We gotta diversify.
EXT. SUPREME'S SUPERETTE - DAY
It's the grand opening of Supreme's Superette, a grocery store right across from Baisley
Projects. Prince, Puerto Rican Righteous, Black Just, Bimmy, and Babywise stand in
front of the store as Prince cuts the red ribbon to officially open it. Crowds of project
residents hurry in, and store attendants in red Supreme Team jackets attend to them while
Prince and his squad shake people's hands.
BLACK JUST
A lot of fanfare, kid.
PRINCE
Its what 'Preme wanted.
Detectives Jones and Smith drive by in their unmarked police car, checking out Prince
and the scene.
BLACK JUST
Did 'Preme want that?
PRINCE
Fuck them, I'm gonna handle that.
INT. PRINCE'S APARTMENT - NIGHT
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Prince and Puerto Rican Righteous relax on the white leather sofas sipping Dom
Perignon champagne out of crystal flutes.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
A big day, B. A big fucking day for the team and for the hood. We taking
this shit all the way legit.
PRINCE
That shit's for my uncle, kid. That's what he always wanted, to give back
to the community.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Word to 'Preme, B. Word to 'Preme.
PRINCE
I hear you, Righteous. But we ain't done yet. We still got a lot more to
accomplish. Tomorrow ain't promised to you, you gotta live for today.
I'm gonna do me, you heard.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Don't you gotta do that turkey giveaway?
PRINCE
That's next on the agenda. What about you?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I'm getting married, B.
PRINCE
Married?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yeah, to Precious. It seems weird, but I always wanted to get married. To
have a family. Plus, her parents are real happy about it.
PRINCE
Word?
EXT. CHURCH - DAY
WEDDING MUSIC plays as we see the outside of a church. Supreme Team members are
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all decked out in baby blue tuxedos, including Prince, Bimmy, Black Just, and Babywise.
The security members are in black tuxes but they are clearly on security detail carrying
Uzis and walkie-talkies, wearing dark glasses.
BLACK JUST
Never thought that crazy boriqua would get married. Who could've called
that? But that girl, I thought—
PRINCE
Don't say nothing, B. Some things are better left unsaid.
Puerto Rican Righteous and Precious come out family members, including her parents,
who both appear very happy. Prince and Precious share a look, but both quickly glance
away.
BLACK JUST
What's up with that, nigga?
PRINCE
It ain't nothing, B. Just leave it alone.
Precious looks a bit sad in her wedding dress. Her parents come up to her and Puerto
Rican Righteous, and she smiles. The groom and bride get in a limo and are driven away.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - COURTYARD - DAY
Prince, Babywise, Black Just, and Bimmy stand in the back of a delivery tmck giving out
turkeys to project residents.* The crowd is loud and demanding.
WOMAN #4
Prince, let me get a turkey. My kids are hungry.
OLD MAN #2
Get out the way, bitch. I was here first.
PRINCE
Chill out. Don't worry, there's enough for everybody. You'll all get one,
word up.
Prince and his squad continue to hand out turkeys to the residents.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - BACKSIDE OF PROJECTS - DAY
Inside a SWAT van numerous SWAT team members strap on their bulletproof vests and
check their helmets and rifles. "NEW YORK POLICE DEPARTMENT" is emblazoned
across their chest. The door to the SWAT van OPENS, and Detective Jones enters.
DETECTIVE JONES
All right, gentlemen. This is a simple street sweep. We're gonna get all
these dmg dealers off the streets. We're gonna take over the streets so
they can't sell dmgs here anymore. Be careful gentlemen. This is the
Supreme Team we are dealing with, a bunch of known killers and
cutthroats, so be ready for anything and shoot to kill if necessary. Don't
leave your partners in harm's way.
Detective Jones looks over the gathered policemen, whips out his service pistol and
checks the chamber to make sure it's loaded. He ensures the slide is forward. All of the
SWAT team members load a round into the chamber of their rifles. Detective Jones gets
on his walkie-talkie.
DETECTIVE JONES
Blue Sparrow, Blue Sparrow. The Red Robin is ready for action.
EXT. THE BLOCK - DAY
The SWAT van rolls around the comer and up the street. Supreme Team workers look
around confused. WORKER #2 checks his walkie-talkie and looks to the rooftop. We
see plain clothes policemen on the rooftops. All of the sentinels have been arrested and
are sitting handcuffed on a comer of the rooftop.
WORKER #2
We've been compromised. Jakes rolling.
The SWAT van's door BURSTS open, and the SWAT team jumps out with Detective
Jones yelling orders.
DETECTIVE JONES
Grab everybody! Arrest them all.
A bunch of NYPD police cars PULL UP on the scene with their SIRENS blaring, and the
police jump out with their guns aimed and ready. Dealers and fiends scatter. Police
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apprehend them and take all of the Supreme Team workers and crackheads into custody,
loading them into paddy wagons.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - DAY
Detective Jones and Smith stand on the sidewalk as all of the arrests and seizures of dmgs
and money occur around them.
DETECTIVE JONES
That's a clean sweep that will put a dent in their operation.
DETECTIVE SMITH
Maybe this dumb ass will pay us now.
INT. PRINCE'S APARTMENT - LATER
The phone RINGS, and Prince picks it up.
PRINCE
What? Naw, fuck that. Take over the third floor. You heard me right.
Take over the third floor.
Prince slams the phone down.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - THIRD FLOOR - NIGHT
A lot of HUSTLE and BUSTLE occupies the floor as the remaining Supreme Team
workers and security team members clear out all the occupants of the third floor of
Baisley Projects. Members of the security team brandish their guns.
POOKIE
I don't give a fuck if you lived here for a hundred years. The bossman said
take over the third floor, and that is exactly what we are doing. So get the
fuck out.
The OLD LADY Pookie argues with does not appear ready to move at all. She is holding
her ground as all the other residents carry their suitcases, TV's, and furniture, all ready to
move to another floor.
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OLD LADY
Young man, you can't tell me what to do. Who is your momma anyhow,
boy? I probably raised her. I raised most of the young people in this
building. I remember when Supreme was a little boy, such a charming
young man. Unlike you. I've been living in this apartment 27 years.
Pookie looks agitated and turns to C-Just for some help, but C-Just shmgs his shoulders
and moves on down the hall to make sure everybody is moving. The old lady stands
there defiantly with her hands on her hips, looking at Pookie who is clearly aggravated.
POOKIE
Now look, bitch. I don't care if you my fuckin' grandma. You fuckin'
movin' whether you like it or not.
Pookie points his Uzi right at her head.
POOKIE
Now move, bitch.
The Old Lady finally gives in. She rolls her eyes at Pookie and walks off gmmbling
under her breath.
OLD LADY
Give these young boys a gun and they think they're God.
The other security team members laugh at Pookie's expense while he glares at the old
lady's back.
INT. PRINCE'S APARTMENT - NIGHT
Prince lounges on his white sofa relaxing, clearly in deep thought.
EXT. CONEY ISLAND - LIMOUSINE - DAY
Puerto Rican Righteous and Precious are on their honeymoon.
INTERCUT PRINCE
Prince cleans guns on his glass table.
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Puerto Rican Righteous and Precious ride a Ferris wheel at Coney Island. We hear
amusement park SOUNDS.
Prince loads his guns, checking the cylinders for some, loading magazines for others, and
handling them.
Puerto Rican Righteous wins Precious a big teddy bear at the amusement park. He gives
it to her. They kiss.
C-Just and Pookie are in Prince's apartment talking frantically and gesturing while Prince
listens.
Puerto Rican Righteous and Precious make love in their hotel room.
Prince grabs two of his guns and runs out the door with C-Just and Pookie.
Precious moans and orgasms with Puerto Rican Righteous on top of her. They hold each
other tight.
END INTERCUT
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - NIGHT
Crackheads wander about as do some youngsters, who are stunting and profiling. The
projects are quiet. A YOUNG MAN looks around nervously. He sticks to the shadows of
the building, trying to blend in. He ducks into a building and disappears just as Prince,
C-Just, and Pookie exit a different building looking for the Young Man.
PRINCE
Where the fuck he at?
POOKIE walks over to a crackhead and talks with him for a second. He walks back over
to Prince and C-Just.
POOKIE
He was out here, but he left,. He probably went into one of the buildings.
PRINCE
You sure this the nigga that shot me?
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C-JUST
It's him. It's Fat Pete's little cousin from the Bronx. We found out he was
the one who tried to murk you.
PRINCE
Check this out. You two stay out here, wait for this motherfucker, and
come get me when you see him. I want this shit taken care of, feel me?
Both C-Just and Pookie nod their heads.
INT. RIKER'S ISLAND - VISITING ROOM - NIGHT
Black Just visits Supreme.
SUPREME
What's the damage, Blackie?
BLACK JUST
They took out the street operations. Prince moved everything inside.
SUPREME
Inside?
BLACK JUST
Inside Baisley. He took over the third floor.
SUPREME
Are you serious?
BLACK JUST
The kid is innovative, I'll give him that.
SUPREME
Why doesn't he just pay those cops their money?
BLACK JUST
I don't know, 'Preme. I don't know. The kid is smart but reckless.
SUPREME
Tell him to come see me.
EXT. QUEENS - CITY STREETS - LATER THAT NIGHT
Prince cruises in the Mercedes. Hip hop music BLARES as he weaves in and out of
traffic. Tires SQUEAL as he cuts off a car and ACCELERATES past two others. Prince
mns a couple of red lights and swerves to avoid a couple of cars.
PRINCE
Get out the way. The king is here.
The Mercedes speeds past an NYPD police car. Immediately the patrol car hits its lights,
and we hear the siren BLARING.
PRINCE
What the fuck? I ain't fuckin' around like last time!
Prince looks in the rearview mirror and spots the police car.
PRINCE
Lets see what this baby really got.
Prince steps on the accelerator and shifts gears. The car SPEEDS up and passes other
cars. Prince checks the rearview mirror, and the police car also ACCELERATES.
Another cop car pulls into pursuit.
PRINCE
You all really don't know who you're fucking with, do you?
Prince taps the steering wheel and makes a sharp turn down a side street. One of the cop
cars CRASHES trying to make the turn. Two more cars join the pursuit.
PRINCE
I didn't want to do it, but...
Prince pops open a covering on the dash. He pushes the button underneath, and a
CLOUD OF SMOKE releases from the back of the Mercedes. The cop cars swerve, and
two CRASH.
PRINCE
I'm James Bond, motherfucker.
Prince sees one cop car still in pursuit, and from a side street three more join the chase.
Tires SCREECH as Prince pulls into an industrial warehouse complex and speeds down
the widening street. Two cop cars pull up on his tail, and Prince pushes another button
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on the dash. Black grease SHOOTS out the back of his car. The cop cars hit the grease
and SLIDE. One cop car FLIPS and ROLLS, while the other CRASHES into a
warehouse.
PRINCE
I told you all not to fuck with me.
Two cop cars are left. Prince SPEEDS down to the end of the industrial park which
dead-ends and his car SLIDES, tires SCREECHING to face his pursuers. Prince REVS
his engine. The cop cars stop 30 feet away.
POLICE OFFICER
(on car PA)
Get out of the car with your hands up. Throw your keys on the ground
along with any weapons you have. You are under arrest. Comply or we
will open fire.
Prince REVS his engine. He pops open another cover on the dash and flicks a toggle
switch. Two panels on the hood of the Mercedes POP out, and two Uzi submachine guns
mechanically rise up out of the car.
PRINCE
Get a load of this, coppers.
Prince ACCELERATES, driving right at the cops. The cops panic, jump out of their
police cars, and start mnning. Rapid fire BURSTS from the Uzis and pelt the two cop
cars with bullets as Prince drives right at them. GLASS breaks and metal gets PIERCED
as Prince tears the two cop cars to shreds.
PRINCE
I told you not to fuck with me.
Prince drives off.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - COURTYARD - DAY
C-Just and Pookie are still posted up outside the projects trying to catch the Young Man.
They both look sleepy. Pookie yawns.
POOKIE
This some bullshit. When's Righteous get back?
129
C-Just shrugs his shoulders, indicating that he doesn't know. Just then C-Just sees Young
Man outside one of the buildings with a couple of girls.
C-JUST
Check out right there.
POOKIE
That's him, all right. Call the bossman.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - STAIRWELL - DAY
Prince runs down the stairwell, two 9mm pistols in his hands. He exits the building and
sees C-Just and Pookie, who motion him over.
PRINCE
Where's he at?
C-JUST
Right there. Why you got the guns on front street?
PRINCE
Ain't nobody that tried to kill me gonna live another minute.
Prince maneuvers toward the Young Man and takes position. C-Just and Pookie move to
provide back up for Prince. Prince is ready to squeeze the triggers and end the Young
Man's life, but he pauses and puts the guns down.
PRINCE
Damn.
A LADY with a baby carriage walks on the sidewalk directly in the line of fire. The
baby cries, and the lady stops to pick the baby up.
LADY
Be quiet, honey. It's OK. We're almost there. Don't worry.
Prince looks over at C-Just and Pookie who raise their guns, but Prince shakes his head.
Pookie aims his gun at the Young Man, and Prince shakes his head no again.
PRINCE
(to himself)
Get the fuck out the way lady.
Behind the Lady and the baby, the Young Man and two GIRLS (#3 and #4) laugh. They
get up and start to walk away. The Lady and baby are still in the line of fire.
PRINCE
Fuck, I can't do this.
Pookie walks up behind Prince.
POOKIE
Don't worry, bossman. I can.
Pookie FIRES his pistol.
PRINCE
No!
The bullet WHIZZES by the Lady's head, and HITS the Young Man's head, killing him
instantly. As he drops to the ground, the girls and the Lady scream, and the baby cries.
They all turn to look at Prince, who still holds his pistols.
POOKIE
C-mon, bossman. We gotta go.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - DAY - LATER
Yellow police tape zig-zags across the murder scene. Numerous squad cars, unmarked
police cars, and an ambulance are parked in front of the projects. Police officers,
paramedics, and Detectives Smith and Jones are on the scene. The body is covered and
lifted into the ambulance. The detectives question the Lady and Girl #3 and Girl #4, who
cry. Supreme Team members stand around in their red jackets. Some of them are
questioned, too.
DETECTIVE JONES
Would you know the man who shot your cousin if you saw him?
Girl #3 nods her head. Just then, Prince and C-Just walk through the crowd. Different
Supreme Team members approach them and whisper to them. The Lady with the baby
sees Prince, and her eyes widen. She looks to Girl #3 and Girl #4 who also see Prince.
DETECTIVE JONES
Do you see the man who shot your cousin anywhere around here?
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LADY
Don't tell them nothing.
Girl #3 stands up and points at Prince.
GIRL #3
That's him right there.
The detective and everyone turn to see who Girl #3 points. We see Prince.
DETECTIVE JONES
Arrest him for murder.
Numerous officers descend on Prince, cuff him, and lead him to a squad car.
DETECTIVE JONES
We got you now, buddy. Murder one. You're going down.
Prince glares at the detectives, and they put him in the back of the squad car. Detective
Smith leans in.
DETECTIVE SMITH
We can still work this out for a price.
The detectives walk off laughing.
INT. HOTEL ROOM - CONEY ISLAND - MORNING
The phone is RINGING. We see two bodies, a man and a woman, lying naked on a bed.
The woman turns over and we see its Precious.
PRECIOUS
Get the phone, boy.
Puerto Rican Righteous turns over and reaches for the phone. He picks it up.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Hello. Yeah, yeah, OK. I got you. I'll be there, one.
Puerto Rican Righteous hangs the phone up and lies back down, stretching his arms over
his head.
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PRECIOUS
What's all that about?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Prince got locked up on a murder beef. We gotta go back. The team needs
me.
PRECIOUS
What about what I need?
INT. QUEENS COUNTY COURT - DAY
We are in a courtroom. We see the court reporter, PROSECUTOR, BAILIFF, Supreme
Team members in the audience, and Prince at the defense table with his ATTORNEY.
BALIFF
All rise. The honorable Judge Hilton presiding.
JUDGE HILTON walks in, sits at the bench and HITS his gavel.
JUDGE HILTON
Be seated.
The Judge looks around the courtroom and shuffles some papers. The Prosecutor stands
up, but the Judge motions him to sit back down.
JUDGE HILTON
No need for any preliminaries. This case is ready to go to trial. We just
need to set a date. Is your witness ready?
PROSECUTOR
Yes, Your Honor.
JUDGE HILTON
All right. Will the defendant please rise.
Prince stands up, and we see that he is shackled and handcuffed.
JUDGE HILTON
Do you understand, young man, that you are being charged with murder in
the first degree?
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Prince nods.
JUDGE HILTON
How does the defendant plead?
Prince's Attorney stands up and shuffles some papers.
ATTORNEY
Not guilty, Your Honor.
INT. PRISON VISITING ROOM - QUEENS HOUSE FOR MEN - NIGHT
Puerto Rican Righteous sits at the booth as Prince walks up in his orange jumpsuit and
grabs the phone connecting the two of them.
PRINCE
What up, B? How was the honeymoon?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
It was all good. C-Just let me know what was up. I'm gonna take care of
it.
PRINCE
Nah, wait, homie. I can beat this. I didn't pull the trigger. I'm innocent.
My lawyer said we can beat the case. The evidence is on my side.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Can't chance it. I got it, don't worry.
PRINCE
Righteous don't do anything drastic—
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUOS
I got it. You'll be out in no time. Don't worry.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - APARTMENT - DAY
Puerto Rican Righteous and Precious are in an apartment with other Supreme Team
members, including C-Just, Pookie, Big C, and Knowledge. Puerto Rican Righteous is
134
huddled with Pookie and C-Just.
POOKIE
We need to make this move.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Prince won't like it.
POOKIE
Prince is in jail. We running this.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Just, what you think?
C-JUST
Lets do it.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What about Prince?
C-JUST
What about him? WE got this. Just set it up.
INT. QUEENS DENTENTION HOUSE FOR MEN - CELL BLOCK - NIGHT
Prisoners are in the block playing cards, watching TV, and joking around. We see a row
of phones with men talking on them and other prisoners waiting in line to use them.
PRISONER #1
Yo, Prince. You want this?
Prince nods and walks to the front of the line. PRISONER #1 hands him the phone.
PRISONER IN LINE
(to PRINCE)
Yo, my man, there's a line.
PRISONER #1
Shut up, nigga. Don't you know who that is? That's Prince from the
Supreme Team. You better shut your mouth.
Prince looks back and starts dialing a number.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - APARTMENT - NIGHT
The phone RINGS. Puerto Rican Righteous picks it up. Precious is behind him.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What's good?
BEGIN INTERCUT PRINCE
PRINCE
Righteous. What up, B?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Everything is everything, kid. How you holding up?
PRINCE
Just waiting. What's up with the team?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You want the good news or the bad news?
PRINCE
Give me the bad news.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
The connect ain't no good.
PRINCE
What?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yeah, they playing for the other side.
PRINCE
The Colombians?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yeah, that's what we found out. Don't worry, though. I got it.
136
PRINCE
Be careful. We don't need no more bullshit. I'm about to beat this case. I
don't need nothing else come back to us.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Don't worry, I got you.
Puerto Rican Righteous hangs up the phone.
PRINCE
Righteous, Righteous.
END INTERCUT
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - APARTMENT - DAY
The light from the outside shines in through an apartment window. Trash, fast food bags
and pizza boxes along with forty ounce bottles litter the apartment floor and coffee table.
A beat-up couch occupies the room. On the coffee table is an open duffle bag with
several kilos of cocaine visible in it. From OS a loud NOISE like a hammer hitting
something is heard.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - APARTMENT ROOM - DAY
A hammer comes down on a person's head. Two Spanish looking males are on the floor
of the room, their heads covered with plastic bags, their hands tied behind their backs.
They GASP for air. The hammer STRIKES one of the men and blood splatters inside the
plastic bag encasing his head.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Damn, B, did you see his head pop? That shit is nasty. You a real
motherfucker.
Pookie hits the other Spanish guy with the hammer. WHACK. Puerto Rican Righteous
winces and turns his head away LAUGHING.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You crazy for real nigga. I'm out. I gotta drop the coke off. Take care of
these dudes and clean this shit up. Peace.
137
Pookie nods as Puerto Rican Righteous grabs the bag with the cocaine and walks out of
the room.
INT. RIKER'S ISLAND - VISITING ROOM - DAY
Supreme sits with Black Just in the visiting room.
BLACK JUST
They wilding out for real, 'Preme. Shit is getting out of control.
SUPREME
Where's Prince?
BLACK JUST
He caught a body. He's at Queens House.
SUPREME
Word?
BLACK JUST
Word, B. Righteous says he got Prince though. But for real, Righteous
and the security team are out of control.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - COURTYARD - DAY
Sirens BLARE as we see yellow police tape, a number of police and paramedics. A
body, Girl #3, is brought out on a stretcher. Detectives Smith and Jones stand to the side.
DETECTIVE SMITH
That's her?
DETECTIVE JONES
She had a "P" carved into her chest. She was stabbed 17 times.
Detective Smith shakes his head.
DETECTIVE SMITH
These motherfuckers want war. I got something for them.
138
INT. COURTROOM - DAY
We see Judge Hilton's gavel HITTING the bench with voices arguing in the background.
JUDGE HILTON
Order in the court. Order in the court! If this state cannot produce an
eyewitness, then this case is dismissed. The defendant is free to go.
Judge Hilton HITS the gavel. Prince hugs his lawyer. Supreme Team members in the
audience cheer and slap Prince on the back as he exits the courtroom.
INT. QUEENS NIGHT CLUB - NIGHT
Women are dancing, grinding, and shaking as hip-hop music PLAYS loudly. We swirl
around the club taking in the scenes until we focus on a group of Supreme Team
members, including Prince, Puerto Rican Righteous, Black Just, Bimmy, Babywise,
Precious, and some other girls. Everyone CLINKS their champagne glasses together.
Bottles of Cristal in ice buckets are on the table. Prince smokes a cigar. Puerto Rican
Righteous stands up, drunk.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
To my man, Prince.
Everyone gathered roars their agreement.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
And to making cases go away.
Everyone roars even louder. After a moment, Black Just stands up and CLINKS his
champagne glass with a spoon.
BLACK JUST
Yo, everyone. Check it out.
He turns to Prince.
BLACK JUST
What you got to say, bossman?
Prince looks around at the gathered crew.
139
PRINCE
This is all one big muthafucking trap. Ain't no purpose. We bom to
fuckin' die. In the meantime, get money.
Everyone looks at Prince and CLINKS their glasses together.
BLACK JUST
I'll drink to that.
Everyone at the table nods their agreement. The song CHANGES. Precious grabs Puerto
Rican Righteous.
PRECIOUS
That's my song. C'mon boy.
Precious leads Puerto Rican Righteous to the dance floor. Puerto Rican Righteous smiles
back at Prince and shmgs.
BIMMY
She got that nigga open.
BABYWISE
She's a dime piece though, for real.
Black Just and Babywise CLINK their glasses together.
BLACK JUST
I'll drink to that.
Prince watches Precious dance.
BIMMY
What up, B?
PRINCE
Ain't nothing, man. Just thinking.
Bimmy talks to the girls on his left while Prince sits in a trance watching Precious. She
notices and looks back at him, dancing suggestively. Puerto Rican Righteous tries not to
fall down. He is drunk.
BLACK JUST
Prince, let it go, B. Let it go. That's Righteous' wifey.
PRINCE
What?
Black Just shrugs it off and goes back to looking at women. Prince watches Precious
dance, her body flowing and sweat glistening, beckoning to Prince. Her body moves
with the pulse of the music that SLOWS until we only hear TWO HEARTBEATS,
Prince's and Precious'. Puerto Rican Righteous is dmnk and oblivious. Bimmy grabs
Prince on the arm as everything goes back to regular speed.
BIMMY
Prince. Prince.
Prince focuses on Bimmy. He looks around.
PRINCE
What?
EXT. SUPREME'S SUPERETTE - THE BLOCK - DAY
We see Prince, agitated on the block. The store is burning from an explosion.
PRINCE
What?
POLICE OFFICER
Calm down, sir. Calm down. Keep it moving. Clear the area.
PRINCE
Fuck that. That's my store. What the fuck happened?
POLICE OFFICER
Talk to the detectives, sir. Over there.
Prince turns and sees Detective Smith and Detective Jones, who smile and walk toward
him.
DETECTIVE SMITH
What a shame. Supreme's store got blown up. Did you tell him?
DETECTIVE JONES
Who would've thought?
DETECTIVE SMITH
These things happen, though, to big dmg dealers who don't take care of
their obligations. Stuff can get really crazy out here. Who did you piss
off?
DETECTIVE JONES
Think about that, Prince. Think about that.
DETECTIVE SMITH
Come see us when you're ready. If not, who knows what can happen
next? And by the way, you fucked up. You shouldn't have killed the girl.
That's a big no-no. She was a civilian.
INT. RIKER'S ISLAND - VISITING ROOM - DAY
Prince visits Supreme. Black Just is there, also.
PRINCE
They fucking blew it up.
SUPREME
Calm down, calm down.
PRINCE
Fuck that! I won't calm down. Fuck them. I ain't no punk.
SUPREME
Just pay them.
PRINCE
Fuck that. I'm gonna pay them all right.
Prince gets up to go.
SUPREME
Don't let him do nothing stupid, Blackie.
BLACK JUST
I got you, 'Preme.
SUPREME
You know, my lawyer says he found a loophole. I might beat this case.
BLACK JUST
Word?
SUPREME
Word.
They pound fists, and Black Just follows Prince.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - DAY
We see the projects. The sentinels roam the rooftops with their walkie-talkies,
binoculars, and earpieces. One looks through his binoculars and frantically jumps up and
grabs his walkie-talkie.
INT. PRINCE'S APARTMENT - DAY
Prince is in his apartment. The phone RINGS. He and Puerto Rican Righteous are
arguing.
PRINCE
You killed the witness?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Don't ask if you don't want to know.
PRINCE
I didn't want it to go down like that.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Somebody has to be the bad guy.
Prince answers the phone. He SLAMS the phone down.
PRINCE
It's a raid!
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - HALLWAY - DAY
Puerto Rican Righteous and the security team run through the hallways on the third floor
with walkie-talkies, directing traffic and telling Supreme Team workers what to do and
where to go.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Get everything out. Everything. Five-0 is coming. Move it.
We see workers mnning around carrying guns, scales, money counting machines, duffle
bags, crack cocaine in vials, kilos of coke, bags of money, and bullet-proof vests. Some
of the workers mn into each other and drop what they are carrying. Puerto Rican
Righteous looks to Pookie.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
This shit is crazy. We're never gonna get it all out.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - THE BLOCK - DAY
Sirens BLARE as numerous police cars pull up in front of the projects, tires
SCREECHING. A SWAT team van pulls up, and SWAT members jump out. Detectives
Smith and Jones are on the scene coordinating the raid. As the police jump out and move
toward the buildings, workers are running out carrying all types of contraband, almost
knocking the police over.
DETECTIVE SMITH
Arrest them all.
(into his walkie-talkie)
Copy, arrest them all—everybody coming out of the building. All of
them.
CHAOS reigns as the police start stopping and arresting all of the people RUNNNiNG
out of the building. More police move into the building as the SWAT team sets up a
perimeter around the building.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - HALLWAY - DAY
Puerto Rican Righteous gives a LITTLE BOY two kilos of cocaine.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You know Precious?
LITTLE BOY
Yeah.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Take these to Precious.
LITTLE BOY
What about the police?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Fuck the police.
The Little Boy looks scared.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Say it.
LITTLE BOY
What?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Fuck the police.
LITTLE BOY
Fuck the police.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
That's right. Now go.
The Little Boy smiles, tucks the kilos in his pants, and mns out of the
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - DAY
As the Little Boy exits the building, POLICEMAN #1 grabs him.
POLICEMAN #1
Where you going, kid?
The Little Boy says nothing. POLICEMAN #2 walks up.
POLICEMAN #2
Let him go. He's only a kid.
Policeman #1 shrugs and lets the Little Boy go. The Little Boy runs and bumps into
Detective Smith. The kilos fall out of his pants and break open. We see the cocaine on
the pavement blowing away in the wind.
DETECTIVE SMITH
What do we have here?
He collars the Little Boy and calls over POLICEMAN #3.
DETECTIVE SMITH
Book him.
POLICEMAN
But he's only a kid.
DETECTIVE SMITH
I don't care, book him.
The Little Boy mumbles something.
DETECTIVE SMITH
What'd you say, kid?
LITTLE BOY
Fuck the police.
Detective Smith laughs, and Policeman #3 shmgs, grabs the Little Boy, and hauls him
off.
DETECTIVE SMITH
Fuck you too, kid. Fuck you, too.
The Little Boy flips Detective Smith the bird as he's hauled off. We see people mnning
to and fro, police officers arresting them and general HYSTERIA ensuing. We see
cocaine and other contraband being thrown out of the project windows. Detective Jones
walks up.
DETECTIVE JONES
Who would believe it? Dead Colombians, little kids carrying kilos, and
now its raining cocaine in Queens.
DETECTIVE SMITH
They brought it on themselves.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - THIRD FLOOR - LATER
Police have the third floor secured. Supreme Team workers are being arrested and
escorted to jail. The detectives inventory all the evidence: red Supreme Team jackets,
kilos of cocaine, bags of money, vials of crack cocaine, police scanners, walkie-talkie's,
binoculars, a number of weapons, scales, and other types of contraband. A policeman
holds up books to the detectives: The Silencer Handbook, Methods of Disguise, Point
Blank Body Armor, and Improvised Sabotage Techniques.
DETECTIVE SMITH
These motherfuckers were on point.
DETECTIVE JONES
Did we get Prince or any of the other higher ups?
DETECTIVE SMITH
Not yet, but I think we got some of them trapped on the fifth floor.
DETECTIVE JONES
Well, let's go get them.
DETECTIVE SMITH
The honor is yours.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - STASH HOUSE
Prince, Puerto Rican Righteous, Black Just, Babywise, C-Just, and Pookie have gathered.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What the fuck we gonna do?
PRINCE
I don't know. Let me think.
BLACK JUST
We hit, kid. Sometimes its better to call it a day.
147
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Fuck that. I ain't going to jail.
PRINCE
We got to get the fuck out of here, one way or another.
From outside the stash house they can hear the police.
POLICE (O.S.)
Come out with your hands up and throw down your weapons.
Prince looks to Puerto Rican Righteous, and they both start laughing.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yeah, right? Like we're just gonna give up.
Puerto Rican Righteous checks his gun one more time.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Better to hold court in the streets.
POOKIE
I'd rather be carried by six than judged by twelve.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Death before dishonor, B. What you think, Prince?
PRINCE
I don't know. Let me think.
A voice through a BULLHORN calls to them again.
POLICE (O.S.)
We'll give you to the count of three to come out, then we're coming in.
All the team members look to Prince.
POLICE (O.S.)
One.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Ain't no time to think about it now, bossman. It's do or die time. If it ain't
rough, it ain't right.
Prince looks at his gun like he was seeing it for the first time.
PRINCE
Fuck this! You all ready? I didn't want it to go down like this. But fuck
it. Let's give it to them.
POLICE (O.S.)
Two.
Prince nods to everyone and turns two guns toward the door. Puerto Rican Righteous
carries an Uzi. The rest are similarly armed.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - HALLWAY
Police are barricaded behind bullet-proof shields. The SWAT team is armed and ready,
guns leveled toward the apartment door. Detectives Smith and Jones are coordinating.
One SWAT team member holds a bullhorn.
POLICE
Three.
Prince bursts out the door with both guns FIRING. Puerto Rican Righteous is right
behind him FIRING the Uzi. Black Just, Babywise, C-Just, and Pookie FIRE their
weapons. Bullets RICHOCHET off the police shields and into the walls. The police
return FIRE. C-Just and Babywise get hit and go down. Prince looks down at them but
keeps mnning toward the adjacent stairwell. Puerto Rican Righteous pushes Prince,
laying down cover FIRE with the Uzi.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Go, go, go!
They mn to the stairwell. Detective Smith sees them escaping and mns off in the other
direction. Puerto Rican Righteous continues to lay down cover FIRE. The police and
SWAT team hide behind their shields. Prince turns back to Puerto Rican Righteous.
PRINCE
C'mon. Let's go.
Puerto Rican Righteous follows him into the stairwell.
INT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - STAIRWELL
Prince, Black Just (who is limping with blood on his pant leg), Pookie and Puerto Rican
Righteous mn down the stairs.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Fuck these motherfuckers.
Prince looks at Puerto Rican Righteous, and they both smile as they reach the bottom of
the stairwell. He turns to Black Just.
PRINCE
You hit?
BLACK JUST
It's just a scratch.
PRINCE
We gotta get the fuck out of here. We gotta split up.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
All right. Me and Pookie will go this way.
PRINCE
Bet. Word to 'Preme.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Word to 'Preme.
Pookie and Puerto Rican Righteous run off.
BLACK JUST
Just me and you now, kid. If your uncle could see you now.
PRINCE
I'd love to see him, just not in a jail cell.
BLACK JUST
You might just get your wish.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - BACK OF THE BUILDING - DAY
150
Detective Smith has his gun out and waits in an alley behind the building. He holds up
his radio.
DETECTIVE SMITH
(into radio)
Jonesy, yeah. I think I got'em. Coming out the back of the building.
Prince and Black Just exit the building, and Precious drives up in Prince's black
Mercedes.
PRECIOUS
Your boy told me to drop this off for you.
PRINCE
Thanks.
As Prince takes the keys from her, a FOOT SCRAPES the ground behind them.
Detective Smith is behind them with his gun aimed at Prince's head.
DETECTIVE SMITH
I got you now, Supreme Team. You ain't nothing but a punk. All you had
to do was pay like your uncle did, but no, you wanna go all New Jack City
on us, Like you're fucking Nino Brown or something. Well, you're gonna
pay now. Hasta la vista, baby.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - ALLEY - BEHIND BUILDING
Puerto Rican Righteous sneaks up behind Detective Smith with a gun in his hand. Smitty
notices Prince and Precious looking behind him.
DETECTIVE SMITH
You're not gonna get me with that. That's the oldest trick in the book.
Puerto Rican Righteous creeps close, ready to pull the trigger.
PRINCE/PRECIOUS
(simultaneously)
No!
151
TNT. CONEY ISLAND - HOTEL ROOM - NIGHT
Puerto Rican Righteous and Precious lie on a hotel room bed changing the TV channels
with a remote control.
PRECIOUS
Right there, go back.
NEWS REPORTER (O.S.)
Queens County Police and Detectives are searching for a Puerto Rican
youth from Baisley Park Houses who they say killed a policeman.
Yesterday, in a raid on the housing projects, Detective Jonathan Smith was
shot and killed in a dmg raid gone wrong. Police say the suspect is armed
and dangerous. Please call our hotline for any leads on the suspect's
whereabouts.
Puerto Rican Righteous' photo shows up on the TV screen.
PRECIOUS
Don't worry, baby. They not gonna find us here, and Prince will take care
of us. He promised.
INT. SAFE HOUSE APARTMENT - NIGHT
Prince and Black Just sit in the apartment arguing.
BLACK JUST
We got to let the kid go, he's too hot. Too much heat is bad for business.
Your uncle taught you that. We're lucky we aren't locked up right now.
We got to regroup and get money because you know the indictments are
coming down, and they'll have our names on them.
PRINCE
Fuck that, Blackie. That's my man, my homie. What the fuck am I
supposed to do, just feed him to the wolves?
BLACK JUST
Nah, B. I ain't saying that. I'm just saying we cut him loose. He's on his
own. No man is bigger than the team. Supreme entmsted you with
looking out for the best interests of the team, you feel me? That's what's
important right now.
152
PRINCE
Man, fuck that. I ain't that kind of nigga. I never wanted any of this.
Now you want me to turn my back on my man. Fuck that.
BLACK JUST
Don't think of it like that. Think of it like you're protecting family
interests. 'Preme is your blood, kid. We probably going down. They
gonna get us, but the team goes on. The Supreme Team is unstoppable.
They can't bring it down. We got to hold together what we can for 'Preme
so he can pick up the pieces.
PRINCE
What are you talking about? 'Preme is in jail.
BLACK JUST
Nah, kid. He beat that shit. 'Preme's coming home.
EXT. CONEY ISLAND - OUTSIDE HOTEL - DAY
Puerto Rican Righteous stands at a payphone.
INT. FAMILY APARTMENT OF PRECIOUS - DAY
Prince sits in the apartment with Precious's parents. They serve him a glass of water.
The phone RINGS and Prince answers it.
PRINCE
Hello.
BEGIN INTERCUT PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What up, B? What's good?
PRINCE
Shit is fucked up, kid. Jake everywhere, but how are you? What you
need?
153
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I need this bullshit to go away, like I made that shit go away for you, kid.
That's what the fuck I need. But for real, I need some paper and a few
other things. I gotta hide this one out until you can make something
happen.
PRINCE
I don't know if it's gonna be that easy. We talking about Five-O. That shit
ain't just gonna go away. But I'll look into it. I got whatever you need on
the other tip, though. Just holla, give me the 411.
Puerto Rican Righteous thinks a minute. He doesn't say anything.
PRINCE
Yo kid, you still there?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I really fucked up this time, didn't I?
PRINCE
Nah, kid. We'll be straight. Just give me time to figure it out.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I'm gonna send P through to get that, all right? She'll let you know what's
up.
PRINCE
All right. Word to 'Preme.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yeah, word to 'Preme.
INT. QUEENS COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT - DAY
Detective Jones sits at his desk. We see an empty desk next to his with a photo of
Detective Smith and his family. Different officers and detectives stop by to offer their
condolences. We see a different office where Detective Jones's SUPERIOR motions for
him to come to his office. Detective Jones gets up and walks to the other office.
SUPERIOR
How ya doing?
154
DETECTIVE JONES
I'm good, I'm good. Any word on the indictments?
SUPERIOR
That's why I called you in here. We got the murder being charged in state
court. The DA's going for the death penalty, and the feds are working on
the drug charges for the rest of the gang. These guys aren't ever going to
see the light of day again.
Detective Jones nods his head.
INT. CONEY ISLAND - HOTEL ROOM - DAY
Puerto Rican Righteous and Precious get ready to eat. Precious sets out sandwiches for
them.
PRECIOUS
You want me to go back down there?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yeah, who else is supposed to go?
PRECIOUS
Why can't someone else go?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Who the fuck else is there? There's me and there's you. We're in this
together.
PRECIOUS
Now we're in this together. I didn't tell you to blow the fucking cops
brains out.
Puerto Rican Righteous picks up his sandwich and throws it in Precious's face.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Bitch, you need to realize who the fuck you talking to.
Precious turns away and starts crying. Puerto Rican Righteous moves toward her, but she
pushes him away.
155
PRECIOUS
Don't fucking touch me. I'll go but what makes you think I'll come back?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You'll come back all right. If not, I'll hunt you down. Fuck the cops and
fuck everything.
INT. PRINCE'S APARTMENT - NIGHT
We see the apartment and all the material things that Prince has worked so hard for. It is
RAINING very hard outside the window. In the background, Tony Montana is talking.
Prince sits on the couch watching Scarface. We watch the movie over his shoulder. It is
the ending where Tony is on cocaine and Sosa's assassins are moving in. Tony bursts out
the door with the machine gun, saying "Say hello to my little friend." We watch Prince
watch the movie to its ending. As it ends, the intercom BUZZES. Prince gets up and
answers the door. Precious stands there with her hair, face, and clothes soaking wet
from the rain outside.
PRECIOUS
Hi.
PRINCE
Come in. Come in. How are you?
Precious walks in the apartment, takes off her wet jacket, and shakes out her hair.
PRINCE
Let me get you a towel.
He walks to the bedroom and gets her a towel. She follows him.
PRECIOUS
You know why I'm here?
PRINCE
Yeah, for Righteous. I got some paper and other stuff for you all.
Precious puts her finger to her lips and shushes Prince. She takes the towel from him and
turns to go to the bathroom. She leaves the door ajar as she strips off her wet clothes.
Precious walks out in only the towel.
156
PRECIOUS
I married Righteous, but I never loved him. It was always you.
PRINCE
But that's my man. He's your husband.
PRECIOUS
I don't care, Prince. I want you. I always wanted you.
The towel drops, and she advances on Prince, embracing and kissing him. He tries to
fight it but can't. She leads Prince to the bed.
INT. PRINCE'S APARTMENT - MORNING
Prince gets a bag of stuff ready for Puerto Rican Righteous. He puts stacks of money,
guns, clothes, and other items in the bag. Precious stretches in the bed and smiles as she
sees Prince walk in the bedroom with the bag over his shoulder.
PRINCE
Get up, you gotta go.
PRECIOUS
What do you mean?
PRINCE
You gotta take this shit to Righteous.
PRECIOUS
I'm not going back. Righteous is crazy.
PRINCE
What the fuck you mean you're not going back?
PRECIOUS
Just what I said, I'm not going back. I'm staying with you.
PRINCE
No way. You made your decision. You had a choice, and you chose him.
End of story. You're not leaving him now just because it's rough, fuck
that.
157
PRECIOUS
You don't know shit. I didn't have no fucking choice! If I had a choice it
would have been you. I'm staying.
PRINCE
The fuck you are.
PRECIOUS
You can't tell me what to do.
PRINCE
The fuck I can't.
Prince grabs Precious and pulls the sheet off her.
PRINCE
Put your clothes on, bitch, and get back to your man. There ain't nothing
for you here.
PRECIOUS
Nothing?
PRINCE
Nothing.
INT. RIKER'S ISLAND - VISITING ROOM - DAY
Black Just waits in the visiting room. Supreme comes out and sits down.
SUPREME
What's up, Blackie? How's it going?
BLACK JUST
It's all good, B. You know how we do.
SUPREME
How's business?
BLACK JUST
Not so good, you heard?
158
SUPREME
I heard a little something.
BLACK JUST
Shit is fucked up right now general, but the kid is trying to put it back
together. We had to cut some people lose, too much heat and damage.
SUPREME
It's all good, Blackie. I'm about to get out. My lawyer found a loophole.
He says he can get me out on appeal bond.
BLACK JUST
That's good because we might be going down. You might have to put it
all back together again.
SUPREME
It won't be the first time, Blackie. It won't be the last.
INT. CONEY ISLAND - HOTEL ROOM
We see Puerto Rican Righteous and Precious.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What the fuck you mean you don't got no money?
PRECIOUS
He didn't give me any. He said he got nothing for me.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What the fuck you talking about? That's my man!
PRECIOUS
Your man? Your man? You really are naive, aren't you? He doesn't give
a fuck about you. Your so-called man just fucked me, Righteous.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What?
PRECIOUS
He fucked me. Me, your wife.
159
INT. CARMICHAEL'S DINER - NIGHT
Prince and Black Just sit at a table eating.
BLACK JUST
You cut the kid off?
PRINCE
I did what I had to do for the team.
BLACK JUST
That's good. 'Preme would be proud. What's up with the broad? I heard
she came through.
PRINCE
I sent her back to him.
BLACK JUST
That's good. We don't need no female drama. That's a bad situation.
Niggas be dying over shit like that. But fuck that, you got the spots back
up and pumping?
PRINCE
Yeah, we good. I got Babywise and Bimmy handling that. What's up
with 'Preme?
BLACK JUST
Your uncle's doing good. He said to get everything back together. I told
him what was up.
PRINCE
He's really coming home?
BLACK JUST
That's how it works. He comes home. We probably going in.
INT. POLICE STATION - DETECTIVE'S JONES'S OFFICE
We see the HUSTLE and BUSTLE of the police station as an OFFICER gets off the
phone and walks to Detective Jones office. Detective Jones sits at his desk doing
paperwork.
OFFICER
Detective Jones.
DETECTIVE JONES
Yeah, what's up?
OFFICER
I just got word that the murder suspect is headed back to Baisley Projects
this afternoon. Our informant says he's going after Prince.
DETECTIVE JONES
Is that so? I guess we'll have a reception party waiting on him.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - COURTYARD - DAY
A non-descript rental pulls up to the curb, tires SCREECHING. Puerto Rican Righteous
jumps out with a pistol in each hand. Precious jumps out after him, trying to grab and
restrain him, crying.
PRECIOUS
Righteous, don't do this! Lets just go. Forget about it.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Forget about my man fucking my wife? Fuck that.
Puerto Rican Righteous looks up at the rooftops and spots the sentinels. He checks out
the scene and sees that the spot has moved back out to the streets. He sees Babywise,
who nods to him and then nods to a kid with a walkie-talkie.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Tell Prince I need to see him right now.
Babywise nods and moves back in the alley. He does a throat-slice gesture, and all the
workers stop serving crackheads and vacate the scene. Everybody seems to disappear,
and the silence is thick in the air.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
(screaming)
Prince! Get the fuck out here.
He FIRES his guns into the air.
161
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Prince!
A door to one of the buildings opens, and Prince walks out.
Puerto Rican Righteous turns toward him, aiming the pistols at Prince.
PRINCE
What you doing here? You supposed to be laying low.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
You know why I'm here.
They both look at Precious.
PRINCE
You're here because of a bitch? What happened to money over bitches,
kid?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
That's my wife, B. You disrespected her and me. You supposed to be my
man. Why'd you do some shit like that?
PRINCE
That shit wasn't about nothing, kid. She wanted to stay with me. I sent
her back to you.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
What?
PRINCE
Yeah, she didn't tell you that part, did she?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Stop lying, Prince. Stop!
PRINCE
It is what it is, B.
Puerto Rican Righteous looks back at Precious.
162
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
If that's tme, then give me one reason why I shouldn't kill both of you
right here?
PRINCE
You don't need no reason, B. Do what you want. I don't got no gun.
Puerto Rican Righteous stares at Prince and then back at Precious.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Why don't you say nothing, Precious? What's the truth?
Precious starts CRYING again.
PRECIOUS
Righteous, its not—
All three look up as SIRENS sound in the distance.
PRINCE
Fuck this, I'm out. Shoot me in the back if you want.
Prince walks off. Puerto Rican Righteous stands there, guns in hand as the SIRENS get
closer.
PRECIOUS
Let's go, boy. Five-0 is coming.
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
I'm not going anywhere with you. I'll face the music.
PRECIOUS
Are you for real?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
As real as I'll ever be. I'm going out like a soldier. I stand alone.
Precious mns to the car. We see Prince up in the stairwell looking out a window.
Numerous police cars ROLL up, and Detective Jones jumps out, backed up by a squad of
police officers.
163
DETECTIVE JONES
(through a bullhorn)
Drop your weapons. You are under arrest for the murder of Detective
John Smith.
Puerto Rican Righteous stands there with guns drawn.
DETECTIVE JONES
I repeat, drop your weapons or we will be forced to open fire.
Puerto Rican Righteous looks to PRECIOUS in the car, and he looks back to Prince who
is looking out the window.
DETECTIVE JONES
I hope this punk doesn't drop them. I'd like to smoke his ass.
(continued in bullhorn)
Last chance, live or die.
Puerto Rican Righteous shakes his head and drops the guns. The cops surround him,
throw him on the ground, and arrest him. Detective Jones looks up at Prince in the
window and points at him.
DETECTIVE JONES
You're next.
INT. POLICE STATION - DAY
Detective Jones is surrounded by police officers congratulating him on the arrest of the
cop killer. His Superior motions him over to his office.
SUPERIOR
I got good news and bad news. Which do you want first?
DETECTIVE JONES
What's the good news?
SUPERIOR
The feds are going to indict Prince and the Supreme Team tomorrow.
DETECTIVE JONES
And the bad?
SUPERIOR
They're taking Puerto Rican Righteous into custody.
DETECTIVE JONES
What? Why? I thought the state was prosecuting him for murder one?
SUPERIOR
He made a deal with the feds. He's gonna testify against Prince. They're
giving him immunity.
DETECTIVE JONES
What? You're letting them do this? What about Smitty?
SUPERIOR
I'm sorry. I don't have any choice. My hands are tied.
We see Puerto Rican Righteous is escorted out of the police station by the feds. He
smiles at Detective Jones.
EXT. BAISLEY PROJECTS - COURTYARD - DAY
Prince plays chess in the courtyard. Numerous FBI and DEA Agents converge on the
courtyard, guns drawn. Prince stands up.
PRINCE
I know why you're here.
DEA AGENT
Gerald Miller, we have a warrant for your arrest on charges of running a
continuing criminal enterprise.
PRINCE
What took you so long?
DEA AGENT
Actually, we would have been here sooner, but we were debriefing Puerto
Rican Righteous.
PRINCE
What?
165
DEA AGENT
He's agreed to testify against you in exchange for immunity.
PRINCE
Yeah, right? You guys got jokes. You ain't tricking me. I don't believe
you.
INT. MANHATTAN FEDERAL COUTHOUSE - DAY
Puerto Rican Righteous is on the stand ready to testify.
PROSECUTOR
Is it tme that you acted as an enforcer for the Supreme Team and carried
out murders at the behest of their leader?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yeah, that's right.
PROSECUTOR
And who was the leader of the Supreme Team?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Prince, he took over leadership when his uncle went to prison.
PROSECUTOR
And is Prince in this courtroom?
PUERTO RICAN RIGHTEOUS
Yeah, he's right there.
Puerto Rican Righteous points, and we see Prince sitting at the defendant's table with his
lawyer.
EXT. RIKER'S ISLAND - DAY
The gates to Riker's Island Prison open up, and Supreme walks out. A car drives up, and
Supreme jumps inside.
166
INT. CAR - DAY
Black Just leans over and gives Supreme a hug.
SUPREME
You ready to get to work?
BLACK JUST
You know it.
They drive off in the car. The gates of the prison close.
END
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