*** A&M Football/WWI Film Brainstorm ***

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I bleed maroon
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Potential dialogue for that final scene:

Setting: Pregame speech before 1919 season opener (inside Aggie locker room):

  • BIBLE: Men, we have all been through a lot since we last stepped onto the gridiron. Compared with our long trip to Europe, this is but a child's game we're playing...

(looks around room at the by-now-familiar faces of the veterans of the 1917 season and 1918 war) (pauses longer on the faces of our protagonists)

  • BIBLE: Now, we may not know much about the future, but we know two things. No one can top what we did in 1917 - undefeated and unscored upon in eight games just doesn't happen, men. You willed it into being, and I can't expect any more from you than that.
  • BIBLE: We also know that what we went through in Europe won't ever happen again. It truly was the war to end all wars. Thank God that's behind us.

  • BIBLE: Now go out there and show the nation what Fightin' Texas Aggies are all about. Strive for perfection, and make your families proud!

VOICEOVER: Bible was wrong on both counts - - in less than 20 years, the world was at war again, and less than 4 months later, the Aggies had done the unthinkable - bettered their 1917 team results with a record of 10-0, once again, UNBEATEN and UNSCORED UPON.
meatsweats
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Just to give a little feel for the era this is happening and maybe provide some background or B footage
Audio Radio broadcasting at this time wasn't out yet, however there was an amateur radio club on campus and a Ham Radio transmitter in Bolton Hall. I have seen both where our 1919 and 1921 tu games were the first radio broadcast of a college football game anywhere. Creative liberties gives us 1919. Now this radio broadcast was MORSE Code based since voice based radio wasn't out yet. So the students and faculty developed a code for simple plays. Ie: T" represented Texas, "A" Aggies, "B" ball, "Y" yard line, "FP" forward pass, "G" gain, and "L" loss. So "TB A 45Y" translated to "Texas ball on the Aggie 45 yard line." You could even maybe incorporate some flashback scenes of a Morse code operator on the battlefield under fire, going back to his operator job in the press box. This era is fascinating to me.

Or Imagine a student , dirty with a cigarette hangin out his mouth, trampling thru a muddy campus field laying down a wire from cable reel. He is going from the press box all the way to the 3rd floor of Bolton Hall getting ready for our big game. An option for opening credits?


http://www.brazoscountyhistory.org/sites/default/files/EarlyFootballBroadcast.pdf
TCTTS
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Wow, this would be awesome. GREAT little nugget.
BigJim49 AustinNowDallas
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jeffk said:

Also, TCTTS - can we get at least a passing mention to the Influenza Pandemic of 1918? One of the scariest disease outbreaks of recorded history and it never gets any mention.
Knew a man who was at A&M then. At a meeting they were asked if anyone had

experience working at a funeral home as they needed help . 5 0r 6 including my friend

volunteered .

He said he helped bury ALL of these volunteers! FLU !
BigJim49AustinnowDallas
I bleed maroon
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meatsweats said:

Just to give a little feel for the era this is happening and maybe provide some background or B footage
Audio Radio broadcasting at this time wasn't out yet, however there was an amateur radio club on campus and a Ham Radio transmitter in Bolton Hall. I have seen both where our 1919 and 1921 tu games were the first radio broadcast of a college football game anywhere. Creative liberties gives us 1919. Now this radio broadcast was MORSE Code based since voice based radio wasn't out yet. So the students and faculty developed a code for simple plays. Ie: T" represented Texas, "A" Aggies, "B" ball, "Y" yard line, "FP" forward pass, "G" gain, and "L" loss. So "TB A 45Y" translated to "Texas ball on the Aggie 45 yard line." You could even maybe incorporate some flashback scenes of a Morse code operator on the battlefield under fire, going back to his operator job in the press box. This era is fascinating to me.

Or Imagine a student , dirty with a cigarette hangin out his mouth, trampling thru a muddy campus field laying down a wire from cable reel. He is going from the press box all the way to the 3rd floor of Bolton Hall getting ready for our big game. An option for opening credits?


http://www.brazoscountyhistory.org/sites/default/files/EarlyFootballBroadcast.pdf
Of course, that same student could be pictured in an interspersed one-year 1918 flashback to him laying down communication wire on the western front of WWI, with similar imagery. That would also be a way to have the student body represented in addition to the football team. Could even be one of the main characters that's followed in both settings. Outstanding.
BigJim49 AustinNowDallas
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Rip Collins played on the 17 team - "pronounced by many to be the best kicker alive " per yearbook.

Averaged 62 yds in one game - there is a picture of his extra point - drop kick !

I played in 10th grade against his son- saw these sky high punts in warmup and couldn't

believe my eyes . He later tried out at A&M but only made B team.

Rip '17 became Sheriff of Travis County - 60s probably.
BigJim49AustinnowDallas
Bockaneer
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Bible always seemed an enigma to me with his success at A&M but then known for Nebraska and Texas... seems like going to war with his team would've been enough to keep him here so now I'm even more intrigued by his departure.

and the "they shall not pass" puts me straight to Monty Python and the Holy Grail - probably the only movie I've seen in the double digits
A.G.S.
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Just saw this, but after reading through the last 6 pages it's definitely an interesting idea.

Given the time period and character development lines postulated, I think I have the perfect movie title:

"Legends of the Fall Football Seasons"

Be awesome if the main protagonist had a rival on the Baylor team he hated....
Rex Racer
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Dana X. Bible wrote a book that you can get used on Amazon for between $20-$30. It might have some insight into his personality and philosophy on life. I'm not sure.

Championship Football: A Guide for Player Coach and Fan


TCTTS
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One step ahead of you...

Rex Racer
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Ha ha! Nice!
'03ag
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TCTTS said:

One step ahead of you...


Are you the one that gave it a 5 star review ?
Blatant Disregard
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TCTTS
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Ha, not me. Strangely enough, my mom, of all people, had this copy for years. I come from a big Aggie family, with a deep Aggie roots, and my parents/grandparents have always had tons of Aggie books and what not all over their houses. This was one of them, and she gave it to me years ago when I first brought up the idea of this project.
TCTTS
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Given what we're currently living through, it seems this project could be more relevant that ever...

https://www.theeagle.com/sports/spanish-flu-had-huge-impact-on-a-m-football-season/article_f46b1516-70a9-11ea-851f-4f18b971cead.html#21
gomerschlep
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Can we KickStarter this thing? I'm down for a few hundy
TCTTS
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I might have a new route to getting this made. Originally, I was thinking I'd write this myself, but if I gave up that responsibility, and only produced instead, it would not only have a better shot at getting made, but it could get written faster as well (as I wouldn't be able to tackle it for a couple of years, most likely). That, and, knock on wood, but my company is potentially on the verge of having an official new pipeline to filter something like this through, where we can finally pay other writers to do something like this, as long as our financiers sign-off. So basically all it would take is me creating "pitch deck" - a pdf doc that breaks down the basic concept, with accompanying imagery - and then landing/paying a bigger writer based off that deck. I'm currently wrapping up a couple of other projects, but I think I can knock out a pitch deck over a couple of weeks this summer, and get the ball rolling from there. I'll keep you guys updated...
TCTTS
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https://texags.com/s/35947/legendary-am-coach-dx-bible-writes-to-his-players-after-the-spanish-flu-wwi
TCTTS
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Really getting fired up to dive into this again. I'm going to make this movie if it's the last thing I do.
tx1c
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TCTTS said:

Really getting fired up to dive into this again. I'm going to make this movie if it's the last thing I do.


Let me claim a spot in line for presale tickets.
_lefraud_
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I read Over There In The Air (John A. Adams) last night, which is mostly about the Aggie war effort from the university and aviation. It has several stories about Aggies that could bridge the story to Dana X. Bible.

One person particular is Lt. Martin C. Giesecke '12, who played in the FTAB and flew several missions on the western front in Sept/Oct 1918. There's also a Griesenback player that served in the aviation, perhaps with some liberties his story couldbe interwoven with Bible, as he played on the 1917 team.
Quote:

Scene: Giesecke gets back from a successful mission, and looks over at nearby airfield to see some guys playing/practicing football, with Coach Bible there instructing (as Bible "coaching" at the airfield was referenced in the book)

Another person that could bridge the ground effort is Lt. Dillon T. Stevens '13. He pins a letter on Nov 10, 1918 while in France with he and a bunch of Aggies reminiscing about A&M, there's even a few soldiers from t.u. that he makes reference in the letter, and it is all signed by the Aggies there (11 total).
Quote:

Scene: Stevens and his crew have just finished piecing together a meal for the night after a long day of battle. He and several soldiers are shooting the ****, giving the 'sips a hard time about the 1917 season, when a Lt. Mark P. Thomas '17 speaks up and says, "I hear we are going to have another good team next year, especially if Coach Bible returns after the war." Maybe this is where Pinky can be introduced...but more on that later
The book starts out with a story about how the first aircraft to ever land in College Station occurred in 1911 and the pilot landed on the 50 yard line of Kyle Field. That could be a scene at the beginning of the film perhaps?

Several players, some already mentioned, could be adopted into the film, such as QB Author Knickerbocker, who was friends with Pinky once Pinky returned home from the war and formed his famous quartet (according to AggieNetwork).
Quote:

Scene: Pinky and Author both enlist, however Author does not actually go to war and is discharged (this is from some online research). Maybe do to injury, or who knows. But Author is left in College Station to deal with civilian life at A&M, dealing with the Flu epidemic, trainings of soldiers, or just going to a few of the games that were played in 2018. Either way, this is the bridge from Pinky on the war front, and back home.
There's also Jack Mahan who was a player on both the 1917 & 1919 teams, as well as the first olympian for A&M in 1920. He served on the army, but not sure where.

Or as mentioned, Roswell Higginbotham also served, and was on both teams. Ironically, his older brother played baseball at A&M and then went on to coach at Texas Tech later after the war.
_____________________________________________________________

I went down an absolute rabbit hole with all these names, and while there is not a whole lot out there regarding their duties in the war, through film, there is more than enough to bridge certain characters.
CoolaidWade
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And then......... The aliens come. And they are not friendly.

And Dana Bible has to pick up his guns and lead us to war again. This time with a force we don't know or understand.
TCTTS
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This is GREAT info. Thanks so much for breaking it all down. Ordering this book now.
_lefraud_
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From the book, Over There In The Air by John A. Adams Jr, the letter by Lt. Dillon T. Stevens '13:
Quote:

If you could look in on us tonight and forget where we were, you might easily imagine its gathering of some of the olds boys in the College Mess, except that our uniforms are olive drab instead of cadet blue. The cloth is as white, the silver as gleaming and the food as good as at some of the special spreads that Bernard Sbisa used to set for us. In fact, the atmosphere of old A. and M. pervades this high ceiling dining room in France tonight, and its walls have echoed to a "Chigaroo garem" and to "Rough tough, real stuff" in good old A. and M. style. Possibly the waiters think we have gone crazy or that perhaps we have heard through some private channel that the Kaiser has committed suicide. At any rate they do not understand "Zese droll Americaines" but you would and you'd know how good we feel to be here together.

Most of us are at a big flying field not many kilometers from here, while a few others ate a nearby posts. Some others missed being here by a narrow margin; for instance [Lt. W. Lee] "Fanny" Coleman left just a few days ago and though we've not heard, we hope he has Hun or so to his credit by now. [Lt. George I. '14] Lane pulled out last week and took his tin lid with him, so he must have some important business to attend to. [Lt. Roderick R.] "Red" Allen is not many kilometers distant, but we were unable to reach him with a notice of this rather impromptu spread.

We have with us tonight three of our ancient enemies, Lt. Ben H. Rice, Jr., Lt. Fred C. Roberts, and Lt. Frank M. Martin of the University of Texas, and they have contributed both to the merriment of the evening and to the zest of the reminisces, particularly ancient football scores and student battles.

Regards to Sergeant Kenny [A&M commandant's staff], and to the other sergeants with him, who we know are keeping up with 2,000 A. and M. men in the Service, and are turning out new ones all the time.

Now we will pledge A. and M. and you and all our brothers over-there and over-here in the wine of France.

"Hold'em A. and M."
[signed]

Lt. C. H. Harrison '12 Lt. J.M. Kendrick '15
Lt. Mark P. Thomas '17 Lt. W.T. Donoho '13
Capt. C.A. Biggers '14 Lt. Dillon T. Stevens '13
Capt. R.B. Pearce '11 Lt. Martin M. Daughety '16
Lt. T.K. Morris '16 Lt. John Fries '12
Lt. Quinlan Adams '12



"The A. and M. Spirit Follows" Alumni Quarterly, February 1919, p. 13.

TCTTS
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So good.

I love the "ancient enemies"/rivals-on-the-football-field but brothers-in-war angle with the University of Texas soldiers. That could be cool.
Sarduakar
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TCTTS said:

So good.

I love the "ancient enemies"/rivals-on-the-football-field but brothers-in-war angle with the University of Texas soldiers. That could be cool.


You are writing this whole thing down sequestered at your house , right? I expect a preliminary script in about a month.
TCTTS
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Ha, working on two other projects at the moment, but as I said a few posts above, a "pitch deck" for this is next. Will get started on it at some point this summer. Literally just ordered the book, though.
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