Q:How do you feel about the movie rights for The Fault in Our Stars being optioned?
Unambiguously happy. (By the way, the movie rights to The Fault in Our Stars were optioned by Fox 2000.)
Why unambiguously happy?
1. I like the people who are involved in this. They read the book with tremendous clarity and care, and they didn’t respond to it by being like, “This will make a billion dollars and we’ll all be rich,” which was really refreshing.
2. One of the producers is a Liverpool supporter.
3. There’s been a lot of grumble grumble the same production company made Twilight grumble grumble. Well, rest assured: They won’t make Twilight again. They can’t, because my book contains no vampires and very little glitter. What they’ve shown is an ability to make movies people like without comic book characters and billion dollar budgets, which is an underappreciated skill, and one that I find very valuable going into a challenging project like this one. It’s not easy to get Hollywood to make a funnysad movie about smart teenagers* with disabilities, let alone one that captures the guts of a story.
For the first time in my career, I feel like it might really work, and so I’m completely thrilled. (That said, there is a long way to go, and the vast majority of books that get optioned never actually turn into movies, and etc. etc. etc., so I’m not getting ahead of myself. But I’m very excited.)
* And, like, on some level it just required a lot of faith in contemporary movie-going audiences even to take a chance on a book like TFiOS. I am reminded of something a very prominent and famous Hollywood producer said to me about Will Grayson, Will Grayson: “The only thing audiences hate more than smart teenagers are gay teenagers.” Hearing things like that made me disinclined to work with people in Hollywood. But the discussions I’ve had with the people involved in developing The Fault in Our Stars have been vastly and refreshingly different.