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This is a biopic drama with the following elements:

  • Inspired by a true story

  • Relevant to today's conflicts

  • High adventure

  • Character driven

  • Love story

  • Visceral

  • Revenge

  • Rural

  • A buddy film

  • Strong male/female leads


  • Locations: tax-favorable states, Alberta

  • PG-13 rating

  • Budget est. less than $10,000,000



                                ALL RIGHTS RESERVED


Copyrighted May 4, 2014 by MICHAEL LANCE RITTER (USA)


No portion of this work can be performed, published, reproduced, sold or distributed by any means, or quoted or published in any medium, including any web site, without the prior written consent of Michael Lance Ritter. WGA Registry 1718322, U.S. Copyright #1-1410521141



After the great trek ends leader WILLIAM CLARK adopts him, but his vicious wife rejects the boy because he's half-Shoshone Indian, a prejudice that runs through the script. Baptiste's early family life torments him; thus he yearns for peace and a fulfilling family life of his own.


At age 16 he and MICHELLE fall in love, but they're forced to break up because he's Indian. 


Clark arranges for him to go to Germany where he experiences royal palace life but also racism, violence and a tragic end to a potential family. He returns to America sophisticated but broken and finds solace in the wilderness.


A novice, he gets lost in a brutal desert but is saved by buddy Jim BECKWOURTH. They're together through dangerous adventures. He befriends other characters.


RUBLETTE, his main antagonist, makes his menacing appearance at a fur trade Rendevous. Their violent clashes haunt the story. Rublette says, "Squaw man, don't sleep because it'll be me slittin' your throat." 


He matures in the rugged West. Deadly events occur but he prevails. 


He's given up on Michelle. He guides an army to San Diego during the 1846 Mexican war; unknown to him she and her son are there. They reunite as she finally says, "Oh come here you, I have no more questions." Their pent up passions explode. At last he has his family. 


They enter the gold rush and settle down. His angst from prejudice is erased. 


She almost dies in his arms from illness, but survives. In a saloon her son is severely beaten by Rublette and Baptiste's day of reckoning finally arrives. A brutal fight ensues and he finally kills his nemesis. 


The story's positive ending has a slight twist as the journalist and Baptiste's interview ends.  




Jean Baptiste Charbonneau died in May, 1866 after trying to cross a river. He's buried today near Danner, Oregon, and his gravesite is a national historic monument.


Jim Beckwourth died in October, 1866 of natural causes. Beckwourth Pass in the High Sierra mountains and Beckwourth, California are named after him.


DUKE PAUL WILHELM died in November, 1860. He once traveled very close to Baptiste's gold camp but never saw him again. 


General William Clark, in a rare display of frontier caring, looked after the Charbonneau family all his life. He died in St. Louis in September, 1838.

Audiences will love this compelling American saga!

To read the screenplay go here:


Joseph Curiale - Wind River (I Am)
00:00 / 14:54
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