EXT. A SAVANNAH STREET DAY 1981
A feather floats through the air.
The falling feather. A city, Savannah, is revealed in the background.
The feather floats down toward the city below.
The feather drops down toward the street below, as people walk past and
cars drive by, and nearly lands on a man's shoulder. He walks across the
street, causing the feather to be whisked back on its journey.
The feather floats above a stopped car. The car drives off right as the
feather floats down toward the street.
The feather floats under a passing car, then is sent flying back up in
A MAN sits on a bus bench. The feather floats above the ground and
finally lands on the man's mudsoaked shoe. The man reached down and
picks up the feather.
His name is FORREST GUMP. He looks at the feather oddly, moves aside a
box of chocolates from an old suitcase, then opens the case. Inside the
old suitcase are an assortment of clothes, a pingpong paddle, toothpaste
and other personal items. Forrest pulls out a book titled "Curious
George," then places the feather inside the book. Forrest closes the
suitcase. Something in his eyes reveals that Forrest may not be all
there. Forrest looks right as the sound of an arriving bus is heard.
A bus pulls up. Forrest remains on the bus bench as the bus continues on.
A BLACK WOMAN in a nurse's outfit steps up and sits down at the bus bench
next to Forrest. The nurse begins to read a magazine as Forrest looks at
Forrest: Hello. My name's Forrest Gump.
He opens a box of chocolates and holds it out for the nurse.
Forrest: You want a chocolate?
The nurse shakes her head, a bit apprehensive about this strange man next
Forrest: I could eat about a million and a half of these. My momma
always said, "Life was like a box of chocolates. You never
know what you're gonna get."
Forrest eats a chocolate as he looks down at the nurse's shoes.
Forrest: Those must be comfortable shoes. I'll bet you could walk
all day in shoes like that and not feel a thing. I wish I
had shoes like that.
Black Woman: My feet hurt.
Forrest: Momma always says there's an awful lot you could tell
about a person by their shoes. Where they're going. Where
The black woman stares at Forrest as he looks down at his own shoes.
Forrest: I've worn lots of shoes. I bet if I think about it real
hard I could remember my first pair of shoes.
Forrest closes his eyes tightly.
Forrest: Momma said they'd take my anywhere.
INT. COUNTRY DOCTOR'S OFFICE GREENBOW, ALABAMA DAY 1951
A little boy closes his eyes tightly. It is young Forrest as he sits in a
Forrest: (voiceover) She said they was my magic shoes.
Forrest has been fitted with orthopedic shoes and metal leg braces.
Doctor: All right, Forrest, you can open your eyes now. Let's take
a little walk around.
The doctor sets Forrest down on its feet. Forrest walks around stiffly.
Forrest's mother, MRS. GUMP, watches him as he clanks around the room
Doctor: How do those feel? His legs are strong, Mrs. Gump. As
strong as I've ever seen. But his back is as crooked as a
Forrest walks foreground past the doctor and Mrs. Gump.
Doctor: But we're gonna straighten him rihgt up now, won't we,
A loud thud is heard as, outside, Forrest falls.
Mrs. Gump: Forest!
EXT. GREENBOW, ALABAMA
Mrs. Gump and young Forrest walk across the street. Forrest walks stiffly
next to his mother.
Forrest: Now, when I was a baby, Momma named me after the great
Civil War hero, General Nathan Bedford Forrest...
EXT. RURAL ALABAMA
A black and white photo of General Nathan Bedford Forrest. The photo
turns into live action as the General dons a hooded sheet over his head.
The General is in full Ku Klux Klan garb, including his horse. The
General rides off, followed by a large group of Klan members dressed in
Forrest: (voiceover) She said we was related to him in some way.
And, what he did was, he started up this club called the
Ku Klux Klan. They'd all dress up in their robes and their
bedsheets and act like a bunch of ghosts or spooks or
something. They'd even put bedsheets on their horses and
ride around. And anyway, that's how I got my name. Forrest
Mrs. Gump and Forrest walk across the street.
Forrest: (voiceover) Momma said that the Forrest part was to
remind me that sometimes we all do things that, well, just
don't make no sense.
Forrest stops suddenly as his brace gets stuck.
Forrest's brace is caught in a gutter grate. Mrs. Gump bends down and
tries to free Forrest. Two old cronies sit in front of a barber shop and
Mrs. Gump: Just wait, let me get it.
Mrs. Gump struggles to pull the stuck brace from the grate.
Mrs. Gump: Let me get it. Wait, get it this way. Hold on.
Forrest pulls his foot out of the grate.
Mrs. Gump: All right.
Mrs. Gump helps Forrest up onto the sidewalk. She looks up and notices
the two old man.
Mrs. Gump: Oooh. All right. What are you all staring at? Haven't you
ever seen a little boy with braces on his legs before?
Mrs. Gump and Forrest walk along the sidwalk past the two old men. Mrs.
Gump holds tightly onto Forrest's hand.
Mrs. Gump: Don't ever let anybody tell you they're better than you,
Forrest. If God intended everybody to be the same, he'd
have given us all braces on our legs.
Forrest: (voiceover) Momma always had a way of explaining things
so I could understand them.
EXT. OAK ALLEY/THE GUMP BOARDING HOUSE
Mrs. Gump and Forrest walk along a dirt road. A row of mailboxes stands
Forrest: (voiceover) We lived about a quarter mile of Route 17,
about a half mile from the town of Greenbow, Alabama.
That's in the county of Greenbow. Our house had been in
Momma's family since her grandpa's grandpa's grandpa had
come across the ocean about a thousand years ago.
Something like that.
Mrs. Gump and Forrest walk along the Gump Boarding House driveway.
Forrest: (voiceover) Since it was just me and Momma and we had all
these empty rooms, Momma decided to let those rooms out.
Mostly to people passing through. Like from, oh, Mobile,
Montgomery, place like that. That's how me and Mommy got
money. Mommy was a real smart lady.
Mrs. Gump: Remember what I told you, Forrest. You're no different
than anybody else is.
Mrs. Gump heads Forrest to the porch. She bends down to look Forrest in
Mrs. Gump: Did you hear what I said, Forrest? You're the same as
everybody else. You are no different.
INT. ELEMENTARY SCHOOL / PRINCIPAL'S OFFICE DAY 1954
Principal: Your boy's... different, Mrs. Gump. Now, his I.Q. is
Mrs. Gump: Well, we're all different, Mr. Hancock.
The principal sighs, then stands up.
Forrest sits outside the principal's office and waits.
Forrest: (voiceover) She wanted me to have the finest education,
so she took me to the Greenbow County Central School. I
met the principal and all.
The principal stands in front of Mrs. Gump. Forrest, sitting left,
Principal: I want to show you something, Mrs. Gump. Now, this is
The principal holds up a chart with a designations according to I.Q. and
points to the center of the graph, labeled "Normal." A red line below the
normal area is labeled "State Acceptance." The principal points to the
section below the acceptance line labeled "Below."
Principal: Forrest is right here. The state requires a minimum I.Q.
of eighty to attend public school, Mrs. Gump. He's gonna
have to go to a special school. Now, he'll be just fine.
Mrs. Gump: What does normal mean, anyway? He might be a bit on the
slow side, but my boy Forrest is going to get the same
opportunities as everyone else. He's not going to some
special school to learn to how to retread tires. We're
talking about five little points here. There must be
something can be done.
Forrest sits outside the principal's office.
Principal: We're a progressive school system. We don't want to see
anybody left behind.
INT. PRINCIPAL'S OFFICE
Principal: Is there a Mr. Gump, Mrs. Gump?
Mrs. Gump: He's on vacation.
EXT. GUMP BOARDING HOUSE NIGHT
Forrest sits on a swing outside the house. Loud organic male grunts are
heard coming from inside the house.
Forrest sits on the swing as the grunts continue.
The principal steps out of the Gump House and wipes the sweat from his
face. Forrest is sitting on the porch.
Principal: Well, your momma sure does care about your schooling, son.
The principal wipes the sweat from his neck, then looks back at Forrest.
Principal: You don't say much, do you?
Forrest grunts, imitating him. The principal, embarrassed, turns and
INT. GUMP BOARDING HOUSE/FORREST'S BEDROOM
Mrs. Gump reads from the book "Curious George" as Forrest sits on the bed
Mrs. Gump: "Finally, he had to try it. It looked easy, but, oh, what
happened. First there..."
Forrest: Momma, what's vacation mean?
Mrs. Gump: Vacation?
Forrest: Where Daddy went?
Mrs. Gump: Vacation's when you go somewhere, and you don't ever come
Forrest lies down on his bed and looks up.
Forrest: (voiceover) Anyway, I guess you could say me and Momma
was on our own.
EXT. GUMP BOARDING HOUSE DAY
A cab driver closes the trunk of the car as two women walk toward the
house. A milkman steps down from the porch.
Forrest: (voiceover) But we didn't mind. Our house was never