My initial idea was to have two radio presenters as protagonists, but after researching into character development I plan on only focusing on one. Having a main protagonist will allow me to explore his objective much more effectively, rather than two which will use up time and make the story more confusing. According to John Truby (2012) audiences are most interested in a character overcoming a deep weakness, rather than achieving a goal. He claims this is what makes us care about the character; if they have no deep weaknesses then they are a perfect person, therefore there is nothing for them to overcome. Truby’s advice closely relates to Grove’s concept of an inner problem, which for my story is my protagonist’s fear of war. Although Truby (2012) claims audiences want to see the protagonist overcome his deep weakness, I plan on subverting this in order to reinforce the ideology of the film. Instead of my hero overcoming his feelings of unease towards the war, I plan on exposing him to death, violence and horror in order to portray the chaotic nature of the Vietnam War, and create unease in spectators alike.
Further research into character development comes from a video by Ben Rogers (2016) who looks at the difference between round characters and dynamic characters in relation to short films. He claims round characters are ones which we feel connected to and drive the plot, and dynamic characters are ones the undergo a significant change throughout the course of the plot’s development (2016). In the short films Kleingeld (1999) and Bartholomew’s Song (2006) (above) both protagonists are round and dynamic; they drive the plot and undergo a change. Similarly to these two successful short films my own protagonist will be both round and dynamic. He will have a change throughout the course of the short film where he begins eager to end the war and promote peace, but by the end he recognizes all his efforts are useless and will lead to death. Ben Rogers and John Truby’s ideas, along with my previous research into character development, have provided me with enough background to start finalizing my own protagonist; however before I do this I plan on conducting some research into the Vietnam War itself to add to the protagonist’s historical background.
Bartholomew’s Song. 2006. [Film]. Destin Cretton. USA: Flagpop
Ben Rogers. 2016. Short Film Analysis (Character Development). [Online]. [Accessed 25 February 2017]. Available from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NKWoL4b_slc
Film Courage. 2012. The #1 Most Important Element In Developing Character by John Truby. [Online]. [Accessed 25 February 2017]. Available from: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N4OHRLZQabc
Kleingeld. 1999. [Film].Marc-Andreas Bochert. dir. Germany: Hochschule für Film und Fernsehen „Konrad Wolf“