Read Aaron Sorkin’s snapshot script for Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz’s love story

Editor’s Note: Deadline’s Read the Screenplay series debuts and celebrates the movie scripts that will be factors in this year’s cinematic award race.

I love lucy was pretty much the most famous show in television history, but the dramatic behind-the-scenes story has remained off-screen, until now. Amazon StudiosBeing the Ricardos incorporates many of Lucille Ball’s true stories (Nicole kidman), Desi Arnaz (Javier bardem) and their staff. Sole writer-director Aaron Sorkin defines them all in a week.

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In season 2 of I love lucyBall receives two disturbing news on a Monday: A magazine reports that Arnaz was seen in town with another woman, and Walter Winchell discovers that Ball had previously applied to become a member of the Communist Party, sharing the news with his audience.

Ball and Arnaz show up for work to start the episode; Lucy’s fans will recognize the episode in which Lucy orchestrates a dinner party for Fred and Ethel to bring reconciliation to the bickering couple. Staff writers and cast Vivian Vance (Nina Arianda) and William Frawley (JK Simmons) are also on top of Winchell’s news, but Ball and Arnaz want to get down to business. Arnaz suggests it was a mistake on a form Ball filled out, but Ball doesn’t appreciate the implication that she can’t complete the paperwork on her own.

They spend the week working on the episode, while Ball wrangles with director Donald Glass (Christopher Denham) over the physical comedy. Ball and Arnaz also propose to integrate Ball’s current pregnancy into the series; fans will also remember that they were successful, but it was a controversial step in network television.

All of these events happened during I love lucyis performed at different times. Sorkin also incorporated other classic Lucy’s pieces, like the trampling of grapes in a vineyard, to create a portrayal of Ball and Arnaz at work and in their marriage.

Being the Ricardos released in theaters on December 10 and premiered on Prime Video on December 21. Sorkin’s screenplay is nominated for Critics Choice and was nominated for a Golden Globe, where Kidman took home the award for Best Actress – Drama this weekend.

Click below to read Sorkin’s script.



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