Additional Character Research and inspirations

After I had created a rough backstory and personality type for my character Rose, I started to draw upon preexisting characters from films, TV shows, novels and plays that I could take inspiration from to help me develop my characterisation further.

When developing my character with Harry several weeks ago, at the beginning of the process we began talking about why Rose and Ed would have ended up together in the first place. We came to the conclusion that the characters should be from the same upper class background of wealth (else they probably would have never met) but that Rose didn’t like everything that came with the lifestyle and wanted to break free from this and be an independent person. This narrative we created to fit the personalities and relationships of our characters coincidentally reminded me of several strong female characters from some of my favourite tv shows.

Rachel Green – ‘Friends’ Influences

The character Rachel Green in friends came from a rich family where her father paid her way for her, however after she was cut off from her family she managed to build herself a normal life, find a job and support herself. Although, the situation isn’t exactly the same, as in the sitcom Rachel Green is forced to make this decision to break away from the wealth and class of her family, whereas I feel that my character Rose would definitely have made this choice for herself and shown more willingness to be independent and self sufficient.

(Click on the name in the title to get further information on the character)

Lorelai Gilmore – ‘Gilmore Girls’ Influences

Another character Rose reminds me of for several reasons is Lorelai Gilmore from the American series ‘Gilmore Girls’. The Tv show is centered around a mother (Lorelai) and daughter (Rory) who are best friends and it follows their lives and specifically focuses on the relationship Lorelai has with her own mother. Lorelai Gilmore comes from a very wealthy, upper class family with parents that are focused on their social connections and appearances – something Lorelai spends her entire childhood and teenage years trying to escape. She gets pregnant at 16 years old to her childhood sweetheart, Christopher (who also comes from an equally rich family), and her parents insist on them marrying in order to keep the family’s dignity and reduce the humiliation and risk of tarnishing their name. However, Lorelai uses this as an opportunity to run away from this life and rebuild a life for herself in a new town away from the judgement and confinements of her parents upper class expectations. Lorelai manages to independently bring up her child, get herself a job and slowly works her way up becoming the manager of an inn and eventually owning her own establishment – all without the help of her parents money.

I feel that these qualities of strength, dedication, pride and aspiration are qualities my character Rose would have and help give context to my characters backstory and potential reasoning for being involved with characters of a higher social class despite not necessarily agreeing with their views or lifestyle.

In the TV show Gilmore Girls the character Lorelai is very bubbly and yet has a dry sense of humor that she tends to express through sarcasm. She also has very strong feminist views and is a strong socialist, and hates the idea of people doing things for her or treating her like any less of a person because of her gender or circumstances of being a single mother. While I don’t feel like my character Rose would be bubbly in the same sense (as I see her as more of a reserved character) I definitely feel the other character qualities such as the sarcasm and witty humour are elements that would compliment my characterisation of Rose. In fact lots of the lines I had written in the script, even before making the connection between Rose and Lorelai from Gilmore Girls, were already quite dry and comical, demonstrating her willingness to express her strong opinions and stand up for what she believes in. For example my line: ‘Then you’d have to stop calling us your lovelies, Jimmy’ portrays this characteristic perfectly.

Although I have mainly found correlations between the character traits of Lorelai, I feel that Rose would portray these in a more subtle and eloquent way (considering she is still married to someone with extreme wealth); and so I also looked at her daughter Rory for inspiration. Rory is a more introverted version of her mother, and while her opinions and beliefs are similar, Rory is slightly more reserved and subtle in expressing this. Rory is an extremely intelligent person who strives to go to Harvard and become a journalist and goes out of her way to make this a reality. I also envisioned my character Rose being of a high intelligence and having academic aspirations and working hard to achieve this, which is why I went on to decide that Rose would be training to become a Lawyer in her spare time. I think when watching my characterisation of Rose in action, I probably portray these qualities a little more obviously as I can show her introverted nature through my body language and voice, however the foundations of my character and her inward thoughts and objectives are most definitely built upon the strong feminist and social views of Lorelei.

(Click on the name in the title to get further information on the character)