Question One

mask-etbscreenwritingThe Character’s Mask

Draw the Character Map in a diamond shape. Write the answers to Question One on the top point of the diamond.

Question One: Among people who know you but do not know you well—what is the biggest misconception about who you are? What do people say about you in the loo or bathroom if they want to dismiss or belittle you?

This first answer is the character’s “Mask.

If you ask people what their mask is they will never be able to tell you. If you ask what the greatest misconception about them is they will always be able to tell you.

We pretty much know what people say about us behind our backs. We wouldn’t know this unless we knew we were somehow projecting this image or impression. We also know this image is just front or façade. It’s not who we really are on the inside.

The Character’s Mask is:

– The false face (or false self) the character wears or projects in public;

– The character’s protective outer shell;

– The image the character uses to hide, deny, camouflage or “mask” his or her greatest fear.

Character MapThe character’s mask is the superficial “first impression” of the character. This is how the movie or television audience first meets the character in the beginning of the story. It’s also the general impression the other characters in the script have of the character. This false impression gradually will be pealed away.

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