The Fault in Our Stars was a teen hit beyond author John Green’s wildest expectations. Your Teen‘s intern, Hannah Borison, had a dream come true when she caught up with John Green and the cast of The Fault in Our Stars.
Interview with Fault in Our Stars Cast
JOHN GREEN INTERVIEW
Q: How did you start writing books for young adults?
Green: I like writing about adolescents because so much stuff is happening for the first time. They are grappling with the big questions about being a person—an entity separate from their parents—for the first time. They’re asking questions about the meaning of life, they’re falling in love—all without any irony or fear. That really interests me.
Q: Do you have children?
Green: I have a 4-year-old son and an 11-month-old girl.
Q: Did having children change the story in The Fault in Our Stars?
Green: Yes, it made me much more interested in the parents in The Fault in Our Stars. After I became a parent, I immediately understood that as long as my children are alive, I will be their father, and they will be my children. In that sense, love is actually stronger than death, and I found a lot of comfort in that. That was the hope I needed to find to finish the book.
Q: How did you come up with the story in The Fault in Our Stars?
Green: It’s based on the short life of my friend, who died in 2010 at 16. It was important for me to write a novel where people were living with serious illness, but that wasn’t the only thing they were doing. We imagine that people with a terminal illness live a fundamentally different life than our own. But, they don’t. Their lives are just as complex and meaningful. They have as much life and joy, and anger and frustration—everything we experience. And, I wanted to write a story that reflected that.
ANSEL ELGORT INTERVIEW (Gus)
Q: Did you act in high school?
Elgort: Yes, I started acting when I was nine, mostly in afterschool programs and in school. Then, I went to middle school and high school for acting, so I’ve been training for a really long time.
Q: Do you remember the moment you wanted to do it for the rest of your life?
Elgort: Yes, I realized I wanted to be a performer when I was 9 and in The Nutcracker at Lincoln Center. I wasn’t sure that I wanted to do straight acting until I was 14, but I knew I wanted to be a performer of some sort.
Q: How early in the process did you realize how passionate the fan base was for John Green’s book?
Elgort: Right away, thanks to social media. Once I was involved in TFIOS, my Twitter follows kept going up and up to about 100,000. I can’t visualize 100,000 people. I just hit 600,000 on Instagram – 6,000 alone from Miami. This fan base is as big as Divergent, if not bigger.
Q: Did you feel any pressure?
Elgort: I learned early on to forget about pressure, especially on set. It’s an artistic experience, but at the same time, I have to stay true to this character and not take liberties because there are people who care about this guy a lot.
NAT WOOLF INTERVIEW (Isaac)
Q: How has this been with all the chaos?
Woolf: Just insane.
Q: Where are you from?
Woolf: New York City, but I have some family in Cleveland. I went to a high school for performing arts. It was a normal high school, except you would leave to go to acting class. There were a lot of dancers. It was a great school.
Q: What attracted you to the script?
Woolf: I loved the book; it was really powerful. At the end of the book I thought, “John Green really gets me.” I think that’s how everyone feels.
SHAILENE WOODLEY INTERVIEW (Hazel)
Q: Tell us about your experience being in The Fault in Our Stars.
Woodley: It felt like an honor, simply because I fell in love with the book, and the book has so many important universal messages. There is so much fear around the future, so to have a movie that celebrates life is wonderful. It’s cathartic and healing.
Photo credit: Brian Lumley