LA Times profiles John Green and ‘The Fault In Our Stars’
The LA Times posted an excellent feature on John Green and his time on the set of The Fault In Our Stars, which hits theaters on June 3.
One of the things they touched upon was Green’s friendship with Esther Earl, who was his inspiration for The Fault In Our Stars.
It wasn’t until he met 14-year-old cancer patient Esther Earl at a Harry Potter convention that his thoughts about children with illness took shape as a real story. He spent a lot of time with Esther toward the end of her life, organizing her Make-a-Wish (bringing all her online friends to Boston for a weeklong celebration). After she died, his novel came alive.
He says flatly that Esther was not the basis for his protagonist, Hazel Grace, who has stage 4 thyroid cancer.
“Hazel and Esther are very different people, but I could never have written Hazel had I never been friends with Esther,” said Green, sitting outside a hotel in downtown Pittsburgh, dressed casually in a green “Hunger Games”-themed T-shirt and jeans. “My friendship with Esther taught me two things: how empathetic and outwardly focused teenagers can be, and that Esther’s life was still a good life and she was glad to have lived it.”
Green, who was a strong presence on the film set, also talked about his thoughts on the adaptation.
The author, who wasn’t at all involved with the adaptation, said he loved the script — some parts, he said, were better than his novel. “When I saw their draft, I liked the ending better than I liked the ending of my book,” Green said. “That was a good feeling — and a little bit annoying.”