Ama screenplay – First draft – Scene 1 to 3


Screenplay by
Daniel MacKillican

Based on a novel by
Daniel MacKillican




The temple is a circle of twelve twenty-foot high T-shaped stones (Sandstone with various creatures carved in raised relief), with an outer circle of twelve three-foot high pedestal stones. The temple stands in a clearing within a lush forest. It is a beautiful landscape, with flora and fauna in full bloom and vibrant health.

TWELVE MEN, wearing nothing but simple sheepskin skirts, reverently carry highly polished human skulls to the temple. They carefully place them on the pedestal stones. The MEN slowly back away from the temple, forming a third outer circle, then stop and stand with bowed heads.

A LARGE CROWD of men, women, and children gather on the edge of the clearing. They are all dressed in simple clothes made from animal skins and flax. The sound of rhythmic humming comes from the CROWD, like a slow heartbeat. The CROWD all raise their hands to the clear blue sky.

TWENTY CHILDREN break from the crowd and run joyfully to the temple. The humming sound builds momentum as the CHILDREN enter the inner circle of stones.

The TWELVE MEN raise their hands and faces to the sky. The humming sound stops abruptly.



Ama. Ama. Ama. Ama. Ama. Ama.

A ghostly figure of a NAKED WOMAN with waist length hair appears at the centre of the temple (Her facial features cannot be seen). All of the CHILDREN dance excitedly around the WOMAN. One of the CHILDREN stops running and reaches out to the WOMAN. The WOMAN delicately caresses the child’s face.

An owl sat high-up on one of the stones of the inner circle takes to the air and flies away.


The Hospital is an asylum for the criminally insane. Red-brick buildings and manicured gardens lay behind the encircling twenty-foot high, razor-wired topped perimeter wall.

An owl flies over the perimeter wall and lands on the branch of a tree, just outside the barred window of one of the hospital’s cells.


The corridor walls and ceiling are bright white, the floor is black and polished to an almost mirror finish. There are three cell doors, each with a large square of security glass for guards to observe the inmates within each room.

CELL #1: NAKED MAN, screaming at his tall and emaciated reflection in a mirror.

CELL #2: Old MAN in a smart 1940s style three-piece suit pulling out his own teeth and placing them carefully on a small table next to his bed.

CELL #3: JASON is a forty-two year old ‘average Joe’. He stands at the far side of the room, staring through the bars of his window at the owl sat on the branch of the tree outside.

JASON does not notice as the cell door slowly opens.

Author remarks:

  • The Ama screenplay is a work in progress, and I will be updating it as and when I feel the need to add, change, or fix things.
  • Since I’m learning as I go, please feel free to add a comment to this post if you have any suggestions (‘Give up because it sounds crap’ would not be helpful).
  • Once I’ve completed the screenplay, then formatted it correctly as a stand-alone document, and performed further editing, I will make it available in its entirety as a free-to-read PDF download.
  • If you’re a film maker and interested in acquiring the film rights to Ama, you can get in touch with me via the contact form on this website.

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