Character Archetypes: The Childlike Genius

desiree_character_6Gene Wilder’s life struck the movie world straight through its funny bone and to its heart. The world truly lost a legend. In respect to Gene Wilder’s life, career, and passing, I would like to touch on my favorite Character types with him in mind.

“Though these child-like genius aren’t always understood by other adults, they usually appeal to children, and usually have children friends, or other child-like and eccentric adults.” Desiree Smith

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Gene Wilder

WILLY WONKA

One of my favorite character types, includes the amazing and always much underrated Willy Wonka. Gene himself brought so much life to this intriguing whimsical of childhood fantasies. Willy Wonka was a visionary and a dreamer. Being the owner and operator of his own chocolate factory, makes him a true child at heart. He is the definition of a child-like genius.

A child-like genius is a character with child-innocence, with the superior intelligence. Usually they are inventors, and what they usually invent push the boundaries of fantasy and reality. Though these child-like genius aren’t always understood by other adults, they usually appeal to children, and usually have children friends, or other child-like and eccentric adults.

Christopher Lloyd wearing concoction on his head in a scene from the film 'Back To The Future', 1985. (Photo by Universal/Getty Images)
Christopher Lloyd wearing concoction on his head in a scene from the film ‘Back To The Future’, 1985. (Photo by Universal/Getty Images)

DOC BROWN

Doc Brown is another of my favorite of this particular character type, his only friend being the main protagonist of Back to the Future Marty McFly. Marty being a high school kid, his inventing a pretty wicked looking time machine, and his adorable and comically innocent character despite being an old man, was endearing and lovable.

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CARACTACUS POTTS

Finally, Caractacus Potts, in the movie Chitty-Chitty Bang Bang. An widower inventor loved by his children. And what leading lady would warm this crazy inventor’s heart? No one but beautiful heiress to a candy empire Truly Scrumptious. Caractacus was endearing, lovable, and his inventions pushed boundaries between fantasy and reality.

I think deep down, we all want to push boundaries, dream up new worlds and do things we never thought could be possible. Maybe this is just me?

What are more character types? Are there any you think are pretty cool? What are your favorite character types?

SAVING MR. BANKS - TRAILER NO. 1 -- Pictured: Tom Hanks(Screengrab)
SAVING MR. BANKS – TRAILER NO. 1 — Pictured: Tom Hanks(Screengrab)

 

desiree_smith_1ABOUT DESIREE SMITH:

My love movies mostly comes from my dad. When my family lived in California, he used to work for MGM and Blockbuster Video and has always been a huge movie buff. My dad was the international movie database before it existed. He was the guy that you called when you couldn’t think of that one guy in that one movie, but was also in that other one, but you couldn’t think of his name. Somehow, I ended up being IMDB, Jr. And to this day, I think we are the only two people that play ‘the degrees of Kevin Bacon.’

When our family moved from California to Georgia, I was unsure about it, but I continued my love of movies and even started writing movie scripts in 4th grade. I always asked Santa for a camcorder for Christmas. I never got it, but it never stopped me from gathering my closest friends for readings of scripts. I always thought living in Georgia gave me a southern charm with my Hollywood imagination.

Though I haven’t become a movie director or screen writer, but I still continue to enjoy writing. When I’m not writing stories, fanfics, or being a mom to my beautiful 4 children, or a wife to my high school sweetheart and husband of 7 years, I’m enjoying movies, reading books, or talking to my dad about up and coming movies and playing the degrees of Kevin Bacon, of course.

Though, I haven’t abandoned the thought of making my own movies one day. Now, I love being a mother and sharing my passion for movies with others. I’ve always loved how a movie has the ability to transcend our differences and bring to light the things that connect us as a human race. We can grieve for the same fictional character’s death, believe in the same hero’s plight, and think that we have nothing in common. We can connect through movies, and stories in general, we are able to relate, and empathize and experience a journey together and that is a gift.

 

 

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Writers become so close to their material that they can’t help but lose perspective at times. It happens to everyone. A professional’s feedback is paramount in helping you take your script to the next level. We offer two types of script analysis here at Shore Scripts.

 

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