I have noticed that the “playing a fictionalized version of a real person” device has become much more common in recent years and I am curious to see if the trend will continue.
Off the top of my head, I can think of the following recent examples:
Jean Clause Van Damme in JCVD, John Malkovich and Charlie Sheen in Being John Malkovich, Charlie Kaufman and Robert McKee in Adaptation, Neil Patrick Harris in Harold & Kumar Go To White Castle and Charlyne Yi and Michael Cera in Paper Heart.
As an exercise, imagine that you are writing a movie that features a fictionalized version of yourself and answer the following questions.
1) Is the version of yourself the star of the movie or a supporting character?
2) Which characteristics of yourself do you include and exaggerate for dramatic effect?
3) Would you play yourself (Being John Malkovich, JCVD) or have someone else (Bored To Death, Adaptation) play you?
You might be surprised to find that even if you don’t include “yourself” in your script, by doing this exercise you’re able to find traits from your own character to use for another.
Good luck and happy writing.