Being a good storyteller inevitably means falling in love with one's characters. In the movie Traunik, which is set to begin filming in April, there are some wonderful characters. But as the author the one I most love is Brunner. Brunner is in his 50's, a little rough around the edges, and worn out; however, he also is an expert at his job and has a soft spot deep down that he hides from the rest of the world. Because he is so good at his job, he can afford to not care what anyone else says or thinks, and that's a quality I love about him. Much of the humor surrounding the scenes with Brunner involve him being in this mindset...to an extreme. But while I definitely love Brunner, working with him would probably drive me crazy. He wears flip flops to the office, can't remember his intern's name (by the way, a quick nod to our own current intern, Mary, whose name I do remember), and at one point in the movie receives a letter thanking him for donating a kidney, something he can't recall doing.
Due to a recent break up with the love of his life (don't want to spoil anything here so I can't say who or why), he is even more disconnected from his work and that's where my second favorite character, Alex, comes into play. Alex is the intern. He's ambitious, clean cut, and has his life totally planned at age 20. Brunner is not at all the way Alex pictured his supervisor and he gets frazzled from Day 1 dealing with the insane office in which he now finds himself. Alex, by the end, connects Brunner back to his work, as unorthodox of a manner it happens in.
Feel free to share your favorite characters in the comments section here. I hope once this movie is released, Brunner and Alex will find their way onto your list!
Lynne M. Smelser is an executive producer and scriptwriter. For more than 20 years she has been an active writer who has won many national awards. She also holds a Ph.D. in English from Michigan State University.