Thursday, April 17, 2008

Personnel Dossier #7: Method

Codename: METHOD
Chris Novak
actor, A.E.G.I.S. infiltration and disguise specialist
unknown, possibly American or Israeli

Appearance: Unknown. As the world's foremost expert on makeup and disguise as well as a skilled, versatile actor, the only things that can be said with any certainty about Mister or Ms. Novak is that s/he is likely between 5'3" and 5'11" in height, 20-40 in age, dark-haired, and slightly-built, albeit fit and toned.

Biography: Very little is known about Chris Novak, including his or her real name or even gender. No Western intelligence service can pinpoint the date or place of his/her birth, though s/he seems to speak American-accented English in mixed company and admits to practicing Judaism. Even in the 21st century there are many places both in America and Israel where one may be born and live "off the grid" - a rural farm or kibbutz, for instance. Novak first caught the attention of critics and film fans as the star of the micro-budgeted indie film "Faith and Credit", playing the main character, an embattled Wall Street investment banker confronting the emptiness of yuppie existence. According to later interviews with the filmmakers, "Christopher" Novak had arrived for the audition already dressed perfectly for the part, in khakis and a Polo shirt, and after getting the part showed up every day for shooting already perfectly made-up and in costume. He was reportedly very easy to work with; his only request was that his payment be deposited to a numbered offshore checking account in the Caymans. Novak won acclaim for the part and was offered lucrative supporting roles in bigger-budgeted film and television, but instead dropped out of sight for six months. At the next year's Toronto Film Festival, a "Christine" Novak made waves as the breast-cancer stricken girlfriend in the lesbian confessional film "Dying in the Light." Film fans noticed the resemblance and industry rumor began to spread about the mysterious pair of twin actors, but the gossip was fanned into a flame when "Chris Novak" took a showy role as a cross-dressing con artist in the HBO series "Flim-Flam." Novak agreed to a few carefully-staged interviews where he/she confessed that "Chris" and "Christine" were in fact one and the same, but refused to divulge which was true, or almost any other personal detail, preferring to talk about the craft of acting and his/her dream project - a biographical film about Lon Chaney. All of this caught the attention of Special Forces Colonel Thomas Union, who wondered if Novak might be induced to lead an acting workshop for field agents. To his surprise, Novak enthusiastically accepted, on the single condition that no inquiries be made about his/her personal life or origins; this was unacceptable, but a compromise was eventually reached - Novak's background was checked out by an NSA technician who was suffering terminal cancer and who agreed to keep no permanent records of his findings. He gave Novak the all-clear, paving her way for his/her inclusion as a working field agent for A.E.G.I.S.

Skills and interests: To all appearances, Novak's life - acting and disguise - are his/her primary and possibly only interest. He/she is clearly intelligent, capable of carrying on conversations on a great many subjects and having a working knowledge of many technical fields, but this again seems to be a function of the need to play a role to absolute perfection. That said, he/she seems to derive a great deal of enjoyment from the life-and-death nature of field work, where a bad performance can literally kill.

Psych Profile: As possibly the world's greatest living actor or actress, very little can be known about Method with any certainty. That said, some things may be usefully surmised: an intensely curious mind, for one, and an ambitious drive to be the undisputed top of a field. Novak's reticence to share personal details may be interpreted as deep-rooted and pathologial paranoia, but that is a facile conclusion: based on his/her interviews and conversations with colleagues, it appears Novak is an idealist who believes he/she is serving a larger cause by transcending race, nationality, and gender.

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