Read the Screenplay for ‘Sound of Metal’ (EXCLUSIVE)

Jenelle Riley
·2-min read

Since “Sound of Metal” hit theaters in November and Amazon Prime on Dec. 4, the film has been racking up accolades and praise. Particular attention has been paid to actors Riz Ahmed and Paul Raci, who have picked up a number of critics’ awards along the way. You can now read the script for the acclaimed movie here.

Directed by Darius Marder (in his feature film debut) and scripted by Dairus and Abraham Marder with a story by Darius Marder and Derek Cianfrance, the film centers on Ruben (Ahmed), a drummer in a metal duo and recovering addict who begins to lose his hearing. His girlfriend Lou (Olivia Cooke) takes him to a rural community led by Joe (Raci), a deaf Vietnam War vet who teaches Ruben a new way of life.

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Early pages of the script takes the reader inside Ruben’s situation, showing how the sound is muffled when he tries to run water or make coffee. There are also moments in the script where you can read what some of the characters are communicating via American Sign Language that weren’t subtitled in the final film.

Both Ahmed and Raci have been guests on Variety’s Awards Circuit Podcast, where they discussed the film at length. To play Ruben, Ahmed says he spent seven months learning ASL and how to play the drums – almost twice as long as the film’s four-week shoot. Already an experienced rapper who performs as Riz MC, Ahmed says that he quickly learned rapping and drumming are very different skills. “After my first session, [my drum teacher said], ‘You’ve got rhythm but we need to work on everything else.’”

Adds Ahmed, “It was very psychological actually, playing the drums. A very technical and athletic, explosive instrument. You can’t think your way to playing the drums, you kind of have to let them play you. You have to kind of surrender to them. And in that, I think that it opened me up in new ways. It made me step outside of my thinking mind and step more into my body.”

Download a PDF of the screenplay here

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