Gypsy Prince Treatment
By Gabriel Gherasim
The Gypsy Prince’s main character is Gabi Colibaba, a counselor for physically and mentally handicapped patients living in New-York. He is of noble and ancient blood in the Gypsy tribes (Satras), going back thousands of years into Indian mythology, as a believed descendant of Goddess’ Kali’s Father or “Kali-Baba”. Yet, Gabi chooses to live a quiet and unassuming life in New-York, until he is summoned by his grandfather, Bulibasa, the Gypsy Emperor.
The Bulibasa has arrived in New-York for a vital Gypsy meeting, where he is to declare who the next emperor is going to be. The Bulibasa is both respected and feared by his following men, -fierce Gypsies kings, with their own aspirations to complete power-, but wants Gabi to take over the emperor’s position. The reason for the emperor’s favoring of Gabi is both because of his personal predilection for his favorite grandson, as well as, because he himself realizes that the “old ways” of the gypsies, -i.e. a nomadic life-style and a life of underground crime-, is in need for a serious transformation, for a community to be successful in the 21st Century. Gabi is seen by the Bulibasa as the obvious choice for this transition of mentality for the gypsies, both because of Gabi’s gentle character and his empathetic profession.
Gabi is glad to see his grandfather, but has serious reservations about taking over this role, when offered to do so. Gabi challenges his own competence of leadership and charisma towards the gypsy camps, not to mention changing his own goals (i.e. helping his patients), for the sake of his native community’s leadership needs. The Bulibasa eventually succeeds in convincing him to do so, after an impassionate call to Gabi’s innate empathy to serve the powerless.
While engaged in these changes, Gabi meets beautiful Rodica again, the world renown star of Gypsy Folkloric Ballet, who has come in New-York on a tour with her Dance Ensemble. Rodica is 10 years his junior, and the last time Gabi had seen her was decades ago, when he escaped Communist Romania to seek political asylum in the US and she remained behind. Rodica and Gabi were neighbors and he used to occasionally baby-sit for her and read her fairy-tales. The encounter between the two, albeit turbulent in the beginning develops into a full-blown love story between the two, throughout the film.
Gabi and some of his clients and colleagues get the VIP treatment at one of Rodica’s performances at the Lincoln Center. Her Gypsy dance, with her ensemble and live music, with the splendidly colored costumes, voluptuous moves and vigorous rhythms, enthralls the whole audience, including a mesmerized Gabi. Rodica receives an on the spot offer for a commercial, to be shot in New-York, from en enthusiastic spectator and CEO.
Gabi is encountered with apparent acceptance as the new Bulibasa, when his grandfather makes the unofficial announcement to the tribes’ kings, his vassals, but there are concerns of an occult conspiracy against Gabi, both by the Bulibasa and Gabi and (unbeknownst to them) from Gabi’s renegade brother, Michael.
Michael Kolibaba is the leader of the American gypsies and he has been disowned by the European gypsies (including his grandfather), for breaking away off the satras and creating his own (white-collar) crime empire. Yet due to the concerns about his younger brother, Michael cuts a behind doors deal with the FBI to protect Gabi, should he be attacked by the rival factions. In return Michael will provide valuable information about the American gypsies’ crime activities and infra-structure to the FBI.
When the day of Gabi’s coronation, as the new Bulibasa comes, there is a surprise attack by rival gypsy factions during the religious ceremony induction, leading to a civil war between gypsy tribes faithful to the old emperor and Gabi on one side, and the disgruntled kings’ tribes on the other. Thanks to the swift intervention of the FBI, who was there undercover, Gabi is extracted from the shooting scene and escapes unharmed, but there are a lot of human losses, primarily on the side of his loyalists’ fighters and civilians.
Gabi is both shocked and enraged by such violence and it is in this state that he reunites with his renegade brother, making a common front of defense against the assailants. Michael’s character is innately more mercurial than his brother and he has been living an active life of crime and leadership with his own American gypsies. They bury their grandfather and the other deceased from the loyalist camp and start planning their revenge.
A surprising support of information regarding this comes from beautiful Rodica, who, unbeknownst to the brothers, has been using the admiration of one of the rebel kings to elicit information related to his continuing plans of assassinating Gabi and his loyalists.
After relating this intelligence to the brothers, Rodica helps them in their surprise retaliatory attack against the rebel kings, at their secret hiding place in Brighton Beach (the Russian neighborhood of NY).
With the entire rebel kings and their men power virtually obliterated, Rodica and Gabi get married on the top of the Empire State building, in the presence of their respective families. Rodica is taking the offer for shooting the commercial while Gabi decides that his life would be more meaningful and happy in helping his patients, than taking the more political role of the Gypsy’s emperor. Following democratic talks with various gypsy tribes’ kings, there is a majority vote for creating a Gypsy Federation, whose goals would follow the old Bulibasa’s dreams: improving the Gypsies’ lives and follow the laws of the host countries, while preserving at the same time their cultural, historical and artistic identity.
The screenplay ends with Michael Kolibaba turning himself in to the FBI, after secretly having had cut another deal with them, to covertly watch and protect Gabi, following Rodica’s revelations about the rebel kings’ renewed plans to assassinate him. In exchange, Michael had promised to give himself to the FBI and collaborate with them to arrest various American gypsies still engaged in criminal activities in the USA.