Gays of our Lives (January 19, 2009)

CHATTING WITH … TOM CHROUST

This
week we speak with Tom Chroust, former head writer of Forbidden
Love
. Chroust started at the show as an intern in August 1998 and eventually
became head writer at FL from July 2007 to June 2008. (He now is
part of the writing team at All That Matters.)

During
Chroust’s tenure as head writer at FL he shepherded the internationally loved
romance between Christian Mann (Thore Schölermann) and Olli Sabel (Jo
Weil). We talked to the out writer via email about that storyline,
as well as other plots and characters he enjoyed working on. We also asked him what
he wished he could have done differently and lots more!

German soap writer, Tom Chroust

AfterElton.com: How did you come up with the love story for Christian and Olli? Was it
a story that you already had in mind in general, meaning a gay love story, or
for them in particular?
Tom Chroust: When I joined the show I thought there was
more to the character of Christian. He just didn’t feel complete, since his
love stories with Nico and Coco were nice but
didn’t seem to be about the one big true love.

Christian (Thore Schölermann) with Coco
(
Mariangela Scelsi),
his girlfriend before Olli (Jo Weil)

TC (cont’d): And since the show didn’t have a coming out
story with a male character for quite a while, I thought that might be an
interesting twist for Christian’s character. And since I didn’t want to
introduce a total stranger to the show, I remembered the character of Olli who
still had a lot of family ties in the show – Charlie is his aunt, Lars his
uncle and Olivia his cousin – and decided to bring him back.

Jo Weil

AE: What
made you decide on boxing as a backdrop?
TC: As a writer you always search for the most dramatic potential a story can have. And since a coming out story
has been told on various soaps in every possible way, I thought it might be
interesting to have a character who is struggling with his gay feelings while
he is having this one big dream that is settled in a totally straight
environment. So the character’s struggle wasn’t only about being true to his
own feelings, but his feelings jeopardizing this one big dream that he has
since childhood.

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