Okay, so I may have called the Moneyball movie “boring.” Perhaps it could have been spiced-up a bit by adopting Bradley Woodrum’s excellent suggestions. But I may need to revise my opinion now that I have happened across one of the many revisions of the script. This particular reivision was done by noted directory Paul Thomas Anderson. One unfilmed scene from Anderson’s script between Brad Pitt’s Billy Beane and Anderson-favorite Philip Seymour Hoffman Art Howe really stood out to me.
INT. A’s OFFICES – THAT MOMENT
BILLY BEANE and PETER BRAND emerge from Billy’s office and walk done the hallway…. PETER’s eyes widen and he ducks into the video room… BILLY keeps walking…. ARTIE H. approaches…
ARTIE H.: Hey, Billy.
BILLY: Artie, hey, what’s up, man?
ARTIE H.: Freaking lost again, y’know, right?
BILLY: Four in row.
ARTIE H.: Right. Hey, did you see my new lineup for tonight’s game?
BILLY: You have a new lineup?
ARTIE H.: Yeah, you wanna see?
CAMERA FOLLOWS them down the hall to ARTIE H.’s office, they pass the video room where FEINY and JOHN MABRY are sitting together.
FEINY: You know, John, maybe you want to try taking a few pitches.
CAMERA continues with BILLY and ARTIE H. in to ARTIE’s office.
ARTIE H.: All right, are your eyes closed?
BILLY: Yeah, they’re closed. Can I open them?
ARTIE H: Not yet. [Gets out lineup card, holds it up in front of him] Now look.
[CAMERA shows BILLY’s face as he looks at the linesup card, then pans to the lineup card with Scott Hatteberg written in at first base.]
BILLY: Cool, when did you do this?
ARTIE H.: Just a few minutes ago. Do you like it?
BILLY: Yeah, I like I–
[ARTIE H. Suddenly grabs BILLY by the shoulders and kisses him on the lips. BILLY is surprised and pulls away.]
BILLY: Artie, wha– what are you, wha–
ARTIE H.: I’m sorry, I’m so sorry Billy. Please. I’m sorry…
BILLY: Why’d you do that, Artie? Why?
ARTIE H.: I’m sorry, I just wanna know if you like me.
BILLY: Of course I do, Artie.
ARTIE H.: Can I kiss you again?
BILLY: Artie, I… I’m not…
ARTIE H.: Please, can I kiss your mouth? Please let me.
ARTIE H.: Can I have a contract extension?
BILLY: No. No man, let’s go back to the clubhouse with the guys.
ARTIE H.: I’m really sorry, man. Forget it. I’m sorry, I’m just really, really drunk. I’m wasted. I’ve had so many beers.
BILLY: That’s cool. Wait, you paid for those beers, right?
ARTIE H.: Yeah.
BILLY: It’s okay man, forget about it.
ARTIE H.: But you like the lineup card, right?
BILLY: Yeah man, it’s cool. I’m gonna take a charismatic stroll through the clubhouse, you comin’?
ARTIE H.: Yeah, I’ll be there in a minute, you go ahead.
BILLY: You sure you’re okay? [ARTIE H. nods] Alright, man, I’ll see you later.
ARTIE H.: [Sinking into his office chair] I’m such an idiot. I’m such a freaking idiot. I’m such a freaking idiot.
Brilliant. I’m not sure why they cut it. Leaving this out may end up costing both Hoffman and Brad Pitt a shot at the Oscars. Hopefully they shot a rough cut for the DVD release. There was a lot of stuff in the movie that was not in the book, but I am pretty sure this at least captures the spirit of the 2002 Oakland organization.
[This may or may not be connected with Paul Thomas Anderson’s other work. See this [probably NSFW] video.]