Semester Project: Character – Director’s Intent

*A word document of this page is available here: final-character-evaluation-option2

(Due on November 18, 2018)260px-Frankenstein's_monster_(Boris_Karloff)

• You may choose any approved film character (featured in at least three films with three different actors/actresses) to examine for your final project by writing an extended character/story analysis. A Character/Story analysis will allow you to evaluate in detail a character’s traits, their role in the story, and the conflicts they experience. Exploring the character arc will become a significant aspect of this project. You will also examine how different actors, writers & directors exhibit characters within story.

Requirements/Expectations: Using APA format, the final project will consist of four (4) sections.

1. Introduction
2. Biographical sketch & character evaluation analysis component focusing on at least three (3) films & external sources
3. Story arc and individualized interpretations of character (writer, director, actor)
4. A wrap/conclusion

Format guidelines and expectations:Annie-nyc-musical

• This is a semester/term paper, and this guideline will provide you key dates to keep you on target throughout this semester (or term).
• Your final paper should be based on four (4) – six (6) strong sources outside of the films you view (do not use Wikipedia). You may use IMDB only as an extra source.
• The paper should be written in APA style throughout your work including in-text citations. There are numerous APA citation generators available online to assist you if needed.
• You will also need a bibliography/references page at the end of your paper (APA style) identifying your sources (including the films you view).
• 12 pt font (Georgia, Times, or Palatino).
• Header at the top of your paper (on each page) should include the name of your selected character-study and your name.
• Number the pages in the upper right hand corner of each page.
• Category headings or subheadings as needed throughout the paper.

The structure of the paper should follow these guidelines: Russel-Crow-as-Robin-Longstroke
I. The introduction (at least two-three strong paragraphs = ½ page – 1 page or 250-500 words) will offer a tease or a preview of what the reader will find in your paper. It should include limited information about your selected character, your chosen films, and why this character is worthy of the study you’re about to share.
II. A biographical sketch & character evaluation analysis (approximately 3-5 pages = 400 – 500 words per page) Things you should consider including in this section: background of character, family, personality type, motivations, limitations, strengths, weaknesses, etc. of the character.
a. You should select at least three films featuring your character and compare and contrast conflicts, themes, and explore the character arc, character development, and character interpretations, etc.
b. You should also compare/contrast (in detail) the story, the crisis and resolution for each film. This may help you gain a deeper appreciation and understanding of the selected character.81j5YEk55+L._SL1500_

III. Select a character who has been portrayed on film numerous times throughout the years (with different acting talent and directors/writers’ interpretations); you should closely explore how those characters are different/and the same from film to film. The interpretation of original source material and the approach to sharing those characters on screen may surprise you, and each writer, director or acting talent explores different elements of the character and his/her conflicts.

IV. You will then need to wrap (or conclude) the paper with one-two pages of final observational thoughts (4o0-1000 words). This should be based on your research and evaluation. Also address this question: Do you feel your character’s journey in complete (or at least the journey within the selected films)? Why or why not? What surprised or intrigued you throughout this study? This is where you offer a defense, personal observations and informed exploration.

How to select a character worthy of evaluation and what to look for:4422d851d13a838f45ca48e766125881
Make sure you only consider characters playing a dynamic role within the films. Those characters who appear flat (one dimensional) and have no complex motivations to consider are not good choices for a character analysis for this project.
Watch each film with your character in mind. Even if you’ve seen the films before, you need to watch them again because you’ll notice new things now that you have a specific task in mind. Notice every place that your character appears and consider the following:
1. What is your first impression of the character?
2. What is the inciting incident that moves your character into the story (or motivates your character into taking action)?
3. How do the actions of your character move the plot forward?
4. What struggles does your character encounter? What are the conflicts? Are they internal or external?
5. And how does she/he respond to the struggles/crisis situations?
6. Does your character overcome the crisis situations or does the crisis overcome the character?
7. Does your character experience real/perceived change?

Examine the characterization of the character
Describe the physical appearance of the character. Describe what your character looks like in great detail and explain what her/his appearance reveals about the individual as a person. What is: her/his gender, age, size or build, ethnicity, and any other distinctive physical characteristics, or unique character ticks or physical markings that would be pertinent to the story. Are there any physical items associated with your character (example: magic wand, suitcase, fedora, chainsaw, eye patch, pocket watch, lucky coin, etc.)?A_Star_is_Born

Discuss your character’s background. If provided, include details about the personal history of the character (some of these details may be inferred). People’s histories inevitably influence their personality and personal development, so it is important to discuss your character’s history if you can. Where/when was the character born and raised? What kind of education does the character have? How does the character’s past experience influence what he or she does or says? Are they rich, middle class or poor? What kind of parents do they have, etc.?

Discuss the character’s language use. Analyze the language that the character uses throughout the selected films. Does the character use the same language throughout or does his or her choice of language change from the introduction to the conclusion? What type of accent does the person use, and does that influence the audience’s perception of the character? Are there unique speech patterns in your character?

Write about the personality of the character. Does the character act on emotions or reason? Is your character serious or do they exude a sense of humor? Does that change or remain constant? What values does the character exhibit through words or actions? Does the character have goals or ambitions? Be specific.GT Master bill.type

What are the character traits? These are a character’s behaviors and motivations. Analyzing these factors can help you begin to understand the character’s internal and external qualities. Would you classify the traits as heroic or villainous? Good natured or grim? Greedy or generous, brave or a coward? Religious, nervous, confident?

Examine your character’s ethics: are the choices the character makes morally just or unjust? Does your character make wise or unwise decisions? Do they stick to their principles when everything is against them or life itself is at stake? Is your character the protagonist or the antagonist? What are your character’s strengths and weaknesses?
Analyze the character’s relationships with others. Think about how your character interacts with others in the story. Does the character lead or follow others in the story? Does the character have close friends and family? How do other characters feel about or respond to your chosen character?

Explore the character arc and development. Describe how the character changes or grows throughout the series of films. Is the character better or worse at the conclusion? Are they smarter, kinder, more courageous, even more jaded, filled with additional anger, etc.? What caused the change?

Which “Literary Hero” pattern best fits your selected character? (refer to the lesson and notes on story & character for details on each of these)

• The anti-hero565fdab91b00003d0129f12a
• The tragic hero
• The romantic hero
• The modern hero
• The Hemingway hero
• The epic hero

Timeline to assist you in staying on track
• Sept. 6: Identify possible character for final project.
• Sept. 13: Identify (3) three films for review featuring character.
• Sept. 20: Identify 4-6 (four to six) strong sources outside of your three (3) films (print, online articles, audio, video sources, interviews with filmmakers, writers, actors, etc. are acceptable).
• Sept. 30: View one of your select films by this date (and make detailed notes).
• Oct. 3: Have draft of the introduction/bio sketch tease ready to turn in for grade.
• Oct. 10: Watch second film & begin compiling detailed notes for biographical sketch and character analysis from research and first two films.
• Oct. 13-31: watch final film; make detailed notes & have next draft of introduction, and 1/3 of your biographical sketch/character analysis complete.
• Nov.7: Have next draft of introduction, and 2/3 of your biographical sketch/character analysis complete, and begin to formulate your wrap/conclusion.
• Nov. 12: Have working draft of your final paper complete with intro, bio sketch, character study and wrap/conclusion. Spend next six days editing and rewriting.
• Nov. 18: Turn in final draft of semester project (no late papers excepted).Lady_macbeth
Characters/Films for consideration(you may offer your own for consideration): Annie, James Bond, Around the World in 80 Days, Frankenstein, Dracula, Lady Macbeth, Alice in Wonderland, Superman, Batman, Jack Ryan, Norman Bates, Carrie, Phantom of the Opera, The Bride of Frankenstein, Robin Hood, A Star is Born, The Three Musketeers, Victor/Victoria, Walking Tall, The Wolfman, The Mummy, Ben Hur, Jesus, Scrooge, The Incredible Hulk, Deathwish/Peppermint, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Here Comes Mr. Jordan, Moses, Mowgli (The Jungle Book), A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court , Santa, Characters of Shakespeare, Moby-Dick, King Arthur.


Carfagno, V. R., Higgins, M., & Rafael, C. M. (1972). Character Analysis. Retrieved from

Davis, D. R. (2008, February 28). How to write a character analysis. Retrieved June 29, 2016, from Teaching college English: The glory and the challenges,

Harcourt, H. M. What are the differences between an epic hero and a Romantic hero? Retrieved June 29, 2016, from Cliffnotes,

Hemingways code hero powerpoint presentation. (2002, November). Retrieved June 28, 2016, from–PPT.html

How to write a character analysis in 10 easy steps – (n.d.). Retrieved June 28, 2016, from

Lopez, E. (n.d.). Responding to literature: Understanding character analysis | Retrieved June 28, 2016, from

Morris, A. (n.d.). Character analysis in literature: Definition & examples – video & lesson transcript | Retrieved June 28, 2016, from

Purdue owl: Writing a literary analysis presentation. (n.d.). Retrieved from
Ray, R. (n.d.). What is an epic hero? | Characteristics of an epic hero. Retrieved June 28, 2016, from

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