Film Courage: What mistakes do writers make writing characters?
Erik Bork, Author/Screenwriter: I think the challenge with characters that I have is creating three dimensional people that feel real and interesting to the audience, compelling and intriguing and sympathetic are the things that you want them to be.
It’s not so much that you are writing the character because you are writing the script that has the character in it. Prior to writing the script you are figuring out who the character is and what you are going to present about that character to the audience. I think it’s kind of harder than it looks to come up with a character that feels real, feels like they are recalling something from real life some how and is really interesting and that audience will care enough about them and want to follow them because they are going to relate to them on some level.
It’s like figuring out what are the key aspects of the character that defined them for this movie or this TV series. What are the problems that they are mainly dealing with? What are their internal issues (their main internal issues) and their main external problem and then trying to write in such a way that they are not just a tool of the story or the concept but that they actually feel like the audience gets drawn into the reality of their life. It feels super real (some how) the way that the character is drawn. It’s not easy to do that but the best characters feel like this is a real flesh and blood human being and it has to do with they are not just a stereotype, they have elements. They might start with one aspect that could be a cliché or a stereotype or a trope or a one-dimensional feature. But then they have something else going on that…(Watch the video interview on Youtube here).