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loklasqueen

Script writer needs help with international abduction scene

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Hopefully this is the right place to post this. I was not sure. I am a young screenwriter and while I only have one film made from a script ever, I am very excited about this project. I hope I can get some help from the community as I am trying to be as accurate as possible. and yes, I will get all the credit although it is your ideas :-)

The story is about a father who is falsely accused of child molestation and loses his child in court and fights the court system to the Supreme Court and then abducts his child as the last resort and then mother, father and son are reunited in a foreign country. Then they all return to the US and father gets arrested in spite of guarantees.

So the first part was easy. I went to Family Court and listen in on some of the trials, I interviewed mothers and fathers that were in similar positions than the protagonist. I even read court papers.

As to the second part, the abduction, I figured it would also be pretty straightforward and easy. Father forges a passport for himself and his daughter, gets on a plane, gets off in northern Europe somewhere (he but not his child is an EU citizen (makes sense in the movie)) and lives happily ever after.

I soon realized that this is completely unrealistic. First of all, it is nearly impossible today to forge passports (he cannot use the real passports because the authorities are searching for him), secondly I found out that there is something called the Hage agreement which most countries are part of which provides for promptly returning children to the country of abduction.

So this is the part that is troubling me. Again, this has to be as realistic as possible (once or if the movie is made there will be changes and a lot of artistic license but it has to be realistic to begin with).

1) how would the protagonist and his daughter get out of the United States and to their destination country? Learning to fly a private plane and renting one and not returning it is too risky, same for buying a motor yacht, perhaps bribing a container ship captain, or illegally entering Mexico or Canada first and flying from there perhaps, or?

2) which country would the protagonists choose? Since he wants to keep his child safe, it could not be a war torn country, but if it is a Western country there is probably that hage agreement in place, some countries extradite people to USA who committed a crime in the USA (which international child abduction is in the United States), it cannot be a developing country for fears of disease etc. All northern european countries have a hage agreement although Norway is so liberal he might get the authorities not to export his child and himself back to the usa. The balkan countries often are unstable and dangerous and even Albania is too uncertain, etc.. (in the script he has these discussions with an accomplice).

So if anybody could elaborate on these 2 questions I would very much appreciate it. In fact, if there is a country that is popular among child abductors, perhaps someone can mention that or even knows somebody or of someone I could interview who has gone through an abduction.

Thanks so much


PS: does anyone know of any movies like this already made?

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4 minutes ago, loklasqueen said:

The story is about a father who is falsely accused of child molestation and loses his child in court and fights the court system to the Supreme Court

 

The likelihood of a case like this making its way to the U.S. Supreme Court would, for all practical purposes, be non-existent.  At most, such a case might make its way to the state's highest court (called "supreme court" in most, but not all, states), but most likely, the case wouldn't go beyond the state's intermediate appellate court (note that 9 of the 50 states do not have an intermediate appellate court).

 

 

16 minutes ago, loklasqueen said:

I soon realized that this is completely unrealistic. First of all, it is nearly impossible today to forge passports (he cannot use the real passports because the authorities are searching for him), secondly I found out that there is something called the Hage agreement which most countries are part of which provides for promptly returning children to the country of abduction.

 

I agree about the passport (although fake passports could, presumably, be bought on the black market -- especially in a fictional world).  As for "the Hage agreement," it's called the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction.  I would not say that "most countries" have ratified it, but all European countries have either ratified or acceded to it.  Your description is overly simplistic.  More importantly, this Hague Convention applies in situation in which one parent has taken a child in contravention of a divorce judgment or custody order.  It would not apply in a situation in which the state has removed a child from a married couple's custody.  And, obviously, if the persons involved are able to make it out of the U.S. and into the foreign country with the fake passports, the chances that the state that removed the child would pursue the matter internationally are probably rather slim.

 

 

23 minutes ago, loklasqueen said:

how would the protagonist and his daughter get out of the United States and to their destination country? Learning to fly a private plane and renting one and not returning it is too risky, same for buying a motor yacht, perhaps bribing a container ship captain, or illegally entering Mexico or Canada first and flying from there perhaps, or?

 

I think there are any number of ways this could happen realistically.

 

 

24 minutes ago, loklasqueen said:

which country would the protagonists choose?

 

There are over 200 countries other than the U.S.  It's unlikely that anyone here has the time to think about the pros and cons of each country in terms of a child abduction.

 

 

27 minutes ago, loklasqueen said:

does anyone know of any movies like this already made?

 

Google search for movies about international child abduction.

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While I'm not going to look them all up for you, many countries (and if you're thinking European countries I'll say most of them) require you to have a visa (think the equivalent of a green card) before you can live there for longer than a few months, and that visa will have a whole host of requirements before you can get it.One of those requirements will require you be able to support yourself without any help from the government, and do not even imagine that you won't have to prove it. That's assuming your character is planning to live in that country legally. I have the requirements for a few countries somewhere, and they are not easy. You might have better luck with South America.

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There are a few south american countries that are not signatories to the Hague Convention.  I imagine getting into one of them would also be easier.  As to how he'd fictionally survive, who knows.  You'd have to do a LOT of background investigation....

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