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Uploaded:2014-02-13
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Tonight is the night! Hang out with @John Green via YouTube and talk about all things #TFIOS . 7:30PM EST. See you there!

About the Film: Hazel (Shailene Woodley) and Gus (Ansel Elgort) are two extraordinary teenagers who share an acerbic wit, a disdain for the conventional, and a love that sweeps them -- and us -- on an unforgettable journey. Their relationship is all the more miraculous, given that they met and fell in love at a cancer support group. THE FAULT IN OUR STARS, based upon the number-one bestselling novel by John Green, explores the funny, thrilling and tragic business of being alive and in love.

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 Introduction


(0:07) Hello and welcome to the live show that I'm doing as part of... to say hi to all of you and talk about The Fault in Our Stars trailer and many other topics related to the fault in our stars. I want to answer your questions about the movie, maybe some questions about the book, mostly about the movie since I'm here, umm, nicely being hosted by my friends at 20th Century Fox, a large movie studio that had the courage to say "yes, we do want to make a movie about... umm, sick kids". So thank you to Fox for doing that.

So I wanna, I'm gonna answer some um, er, we've gotten a lot of questions. I'm gonna answer all of your questions and I'm gonna start basically now, if that's okay. I'm just gonna start answering your questions without uh, you can keep submitting questions if you want! Uh, here in the hangout or, you know, wherever feels right to you: on the twitter; on- on uh Tumblr; whatever your social media is- your choice is.

 Question 1


(1:04) The first question is from Natalie Sportelli and it's a great question. It was "What was your cameo, John, before it was cut?". So for those of you who don't know, uh, I'm not in The Fault in Our Stars movie but I was in it, but I got cut. Ummm, now you may be wandering, uh, "Are you upset, are you angry, do you feel resentment?" No! No! and No! I am truly delighted! I am SO relieved. I don't, I don't wanna be an actor when I grow up, I don't, I don't. I don't.

Like, watching Ansel and Nat and Shay umm, be proper, good actors and Laura Dern and Willem Dafoe and err, Sam Trammell and everyone who's in the movie, watching them - Mike Birbiglia - watching them work... I was overwhelmed with the desire never to be an actor, because it seems like its glorious work, you know, like, "Oh, it's so glamorous and you get all of- you get- you get to be famous and you get..." But it's horrible, actually!

Ummm, and I spent one day acting and I don't recomm-, I recommend no part of it, unless you're like pa- a person who's passionate about acting.

Umm, so my part, that got cut... I am, the reason- the only reason I would ever be bummed out that it got cut, is because I played "Girl's Father" and I'm- I wanted the scene to be in the movie for the sake of "Girl", you know, not for the sake of me.

But, um, yeah, there is a scene in the airport on their way to Amsterdam and (mumbles). Much, much better movie without that scene! So I lobbied for it to be cut and uh, eventually I was listened to, and it's not in the movie.

 Question 2


(2:47) "Do you enjoy making people cry?" asks Lauren Schlikker. Is that really your name Lauren? Umm, no? I mean, yes, kind of? No. I mean, look... I wanna write- I wanna write a book that makes, that- that people respond to, that means something to them, that they care about. Umm, that's what's important to me. Uh, it's not important to make, uh, like... In lots of my books, I don't seek to make people cry, right? Like, An Abundance of Katherine's doesn't have any sad parts, umm...

I don't... it's not my goal to make someone cry, but, um... I want you to care about the story; I want you to care about the people in it. As a writer, your ultimate goal is to... is to get people involved in the story and its ideas and umm... You know, I always thought of The Fault in Our Stars as a funny book and I remember I would read it to Sarah, to my wife, when umm... When I was writing the first draft, I would read it to her and I- I kept- I would read like a chapter to her and I would be like "Isn't it funny?" and she would be like "No, it's quite sad, actually" and I would be like "No, but it's, you know, it's pretty funny as sad books go, right?" and she would be like "No, it's mostly very sad!"

And I never- I mean, to be honest with you, I never thought The Fault in Our Stars would find a very wide readership because it's you know, kinda sad; because its umm, you know, it tries to take on the very serious subject of what umm... What life is like for people who don't expect to have the lifespans that we're accustomed to associating with... with a full life, or a rich life, like what, what those lives are like.

Can those also be good lives; can those also be full lives? Like, that's the question at the center of the book. That's umm, I guess like, that's ultimately not a funny question and I... And I understand that, and you know, having friends who - very, very, dear friends - who died young... Like, I didn't want to treat it humorously umm, but I did- I...

I feel like when you strip away all of the sentiment from that question you get, you get people who are raw and alive just like any of us are raw and alive, and that's what I wanted to capture, and so I guess like in the sad parts of that, it can be difficult to umm... Yeah, I guess it makes people cry. It made me cry when I was watching the movie be filmed and then also when I watched the actual movie umm... A few weeks ago. Yeah, it made me cry and it made my wife cry - Sarah's cried like six times in the last ten years, so it's a huge accomplishment.

But no, I didn't really set out to make people cry but, you know, I'm glad I guess, if you liked it. I don't know, I never know how to answer that question. I'm sorry that I made you cry though, if I made you cry.

 Question 3


(5:28) "Would you ever write a version of the fault in our stars from Gus's point of view" asks Mia Mcdonna. Umm, no I don't really want to write a sequel to the fault in our stars for a bunch of reasons but umm, mostly because I'm very glad to have finished the book and that it's yours now. Like once a book is published; once its out and its between two covers and everything umm I feel this tremendous sense of relief and I would never want that sense of relief to go away by having to re-visit the story. I always feel bad actually, for my friends who write sequels because they only experience that every four books. Whereas I experience it with every single book and that for me at least like much, much better.

 Question 4


Err, Jaly star Elkins asks "Was Looking For Alaska harder to write than the others books?". Umm, Looking For Alaska was my first novel and, I guess kinda like my expectation of writing was that things would get easier; like you'd figure out how to do it and then you'd stop... you just do it over and over again. Umm, the way that umm, you know like riding a bicycle was initially hard but now I've, I've quite mastered it and I'm pretty pleased with my overall level of bike riding ability. But it isn't, it isn't really like that, I do forget how to do it each time umm, and each time I fell totally unqualified to... to write the book. Err, I feel  err, scared and err, confused and I think that no-one is going to like it and I think umm,err, i think that I'll never finish the book and umm, you know I'm going through that now because I'm trying to write a new book  and working with... working hard o it as much as I can and going through that same feeling of like "Oh god no-one gonna like anything I do again". Umm, yeah so like for me it was like the reset button is hit a little bit but I do I am able to rely on the memory of y... to tell my rational self like  "oh i did this before, I have finished something before" and there is a little bit of freedom in that or a little bit of sort of err, yeah a little bit of joy in that I guess but... No I don't umm, i don't know, I guess the fault in our stars was the hardest to write really because I started trying to write the fault in our stars in 2000 umm. Right after I worked as a student chaplain at a children's hospital I, I started trying to write stories about these sick kids that I'd known and about the...this sort of like ruggedly handsome 22 year old chaplain these were horrible stories. I'm deeply embarrassed of them I hope there'll never see the light of day but like I started out trying to write that book at like very early on in my post college career and then I kinda kept coming back to it. Umm, between each book thinking "oh this is my next, this is he next story I want to tell" I just could never find a way into it until the gift of my friend Ester and her life and her umm, her many gifts to the book. Ester's b... my memoir by the way...So the book the fault in our stars is dedicated to Ester umm, my friend, who died of cancer when she was 16, and through  whose friendship I was able to sort of see I little bit  more into the err, the complexity of the life of someone who's living with cancer. Umm, her memoir comes out in... it just came out it's called " this star won't go out" it's very, very good.

 Question 5


Umm, Meganxoo asks "Did you expect the fault in our stars trailer to get as many views as it did?". No... No... No... I mean, I've been making YouTube videos for 8 years. So I know how many views movie trailers get. They don't get that many usually umm, unless they're like, you know, about Iron Man or something (chuckles under breath). No it's completely bananas, I mean the fault in our stars trailer right now has over 10 million views. That means it's like it's...To give you a little context my brother and I have been make videos online since January 1st 2007, like if you add up all the views of all the videos that we made got in the year 2007 and the year 2008, all those videos that's 375 videos that we made in 2007 and 2008, you add up all the views that all those videos got in 800 days, or whatever it was I'm pretty bad at math, it's less than the videos of the fault in ours stars trailer got in a week. hats completely bananas; it's very hard for me to get my head around it. So no I did not... I never imagined that it would be received so generously or that so many people would watch it, I mean. The coolest thing about it to me is not even how many people have watched it but how many people have liked it err, it's it's. It's almost 200,000 people now who've liked the video, like... It's one of the most liked movie trailers ever err, its just its more liked than are most liked video on, on any channel we've ever made and I'm so proud of the trailer because I think that it captured the... (mumble) I wanna say by the way, I wanna say thank you to: everybody who watched the trailer umm; everybody who shared the trailer with their friends; people who made all those amazing trailer reaction videos, I mean I... To be honest with you like the day the trailer came out I was so nervous and excited and overwhelmed umm, and kinda freaked out by the prospect of having this like proper Hollywood movie and nerdfighteria suddenly being a community that was in the spotlight, for those of you who don't know nerdfighteria is the community that grew up around my umm, the videos my brother and I have been making since 2007 but umm. I was so, I was so overwhelmed by that whole thing that...that day I couldn't process what this meant like what does it mean for 100,000 people to like your video or 200,000, almost now 200,000 people to like your video. But then when I started watching the trailer reaction videos umm, that's when I started crying, to be honest with you like that's when I started feeling like "oh, like people care about this book and their excited that the book was made into a movie so faithfully by people who cared about the story; people who were passionate about it". I mean everybody. Everybody err I was on that movie set the entire time: I was there in Pittsburgh; I was there in Amsterdam and everybody who worked on that movie cared about the book everybody cared about the story you know that was what brought them to it in the first place from the producers, Wick and Isaac, to the people who starred in the movie you know from Shailene Woodley who plays Hazel, Ansel who lays umm, Gus All of them cared about the book first and they loved the book and they wanted the book to be well cared for and I think we all felt this you know I remember like texting with Ansel and Nat the day before the trailer came out just like " god I hope people like it. Umm, and we all felt this tremendous responsibility  to the people who care about the book". I mean I certainly do but I think they do too, and umm. So the first day it came out it was just so overwhelming and weird and exciting but also just freaky out-y I don't know that's I word but I'm a novelist. Umm, and I started watching those fan trailer reaction videos it really humanized it like it really gave me a way umm, to give form to those numbers, those numbers can be so big and disorienting that sometimes it's hard to give form but umm, watching individual people to watch he trailer err, allowed ,e a way into thinking about how they were relating to it; how they were sharing my excitement like wasn't alone in being excited about this and it was really; really special. I wanna thank everybody who's watched the trailer and thank you for telling your friends about it, it's crazy I am so overwhelmed and like I'm also really excited to get to 200,000 likes because yeah, we're only 5,000 likes away from that in the trailer video and that's bananas. How bananas is that 200,000 likes. That's a gigantic number that I can't even begin to get my head around, so yeah, anyway... I don't even remember your question, but than- yeah, wow! It's been crazy.

 Question 6


Um... Ella Foster asks "What was the hardest part of the book to write?" Um... You know, there weren't a ton of easy parts! Um... What was the hardest part of the book to write? Maybe I should consult the book! That part was hard. Hmm... That part was actually fun! The Peter Van Houten stuff, that was fun for me. The Swedish hip hop, that was entertaining. Enjoyed that. Mmm... Mmm... That was fun! That was fun. You know, now- now I'm feeling kind of nostalgic about the whole process of writing the book! Ohhh, that was hard! Yeah. Yeah. That sucked. Um... Boy. Boy! Yeah, toward the end, it got pretty hard. There was scene near the end of the book. Um, it takes place at this speedway at 86th and Ditch in Indianapolis. That was probably the hardest scene to write - so no spoilers, but that was probably the hardest scene to write.

 Question 7


Um, uh, Meg asks "Do you miss your characters after you're finishing writing about them?" Yes and no. I mean, I feel a tremendous sense of relief. Like, I don't write series, I don't write books that are kind of intended to live after themselves, but... I feel a sense of relief when- if I can leave the characters where I want to leave them, you know. If I can- in the case of the Fault in our Stars, if I can leave Hazel where I wanted her to be- where I wanted her to get, I guess... Um, that's- that's quite rewarding for me, but... I do... I miss- I miss writing from Hazel's perspective. It was a really invigorating experience, and I- I really- this will sound weird, but I loved being Hazel. Like, I loved waking up in the morning and going to Starbucks and being Hazel for a few hours. Um, like, her problems were very interesting to me, and the way that she had of solving them was very interesting to me, and I just kind of like... I really enjoyed that? So I do miss that, but you know, I'm writing another story, so I'm kind of in the middle of a different- of a different voice and inside of a different head right now, and that's also rewarding in its own way. So I don't- I do miss it but I'm also glad that it's yours now. I feel very grateful that- that I can write something and kind of give it away. Figuratively! Don't illegally download my book. Um... I'm just kidding. But there is something pleasurable about being able to kind of let go of something.

 Question 8


Um... "Is Troye Sivan's song based on the book going to be in the movie?" I don't know, Valentina Villarreal! Um, are you a Villarreal supporter? Because you should be, with your surname. Anyway! I don't know. Um... I don't decide what songs are in the movie. I think like, this is a little, like this was even hard, this is hard for me to understand.. Umm.. When I was younger and even when I started out writing books, but, umm, it's not.. It's not my movie and I don't want it to be. Like, I.. I really want it to be Josh's movie (17:04)