The Fault in Our Stars is this week’s cover story in Entertainment Weekly–you can see the stunning cover HERE. The full article is now available and features interviews with Shailene Woodley, Ansel Elgort, John Green and director Josh Boone. There are also two new movie stills! Check out the photos and the article below! And make sure to pick up your copy when the magazine hits shelves this Friday!
Entertainment Weekly: Shailene Woodley, who’d read both the novel and an early draft of the script by Scott Neustadter and Michael H. Weber (The Spectacular Now), was determined to play Hazel, or if she couldn’t, to just be involved somehow. She met with Gabler as soon as Boone was in place, and said she’d do anything — including wash windows or work craft services — to be a part of the production. She drew elaborate sketches aboutTFIOS in her journal and wrote a long letter to Green thanking him for the novel and explaining why she should play Hazel (“I think it was about 13,000 words long,” Green says). Woodley says her intentions were pure: “I didn’t want to do this movie as an actor, like, Look at me, I can cry.”
Her enthusiasm nearly backfired. “It turned me off at first,” Boone says, adding that he also considered Woodley, now 22, too old for the part. He’d hoped to cast someone closer to Hazel’s age of 16. He and his casting director read nearly 200 actresses before flying to Chicago, where Woodley was filming Divergent. “I liked her a lot personally, but I still didn’t think she was Hazel,” he says. But then she auditioned. “Within about two minutes, I knew it was going to be her,” he says. “I was on the floor. I thought, ‘Why am I fighting this? There’s nobody better than her. She’s awesome.’ ” Green wasn’t in the room at the time, but had the same reaction when he saw her taped audition: “I suddenly was in a blind panic, jumping on the phone and screaming, ‘We must lock this down! It has to be Shailene Woodley!’ ” He laughs. “She is Hazel.”
A blond preteen with a mouthful of braces — trembling like a caffeinated hamster — appears tableside at a restaurant in Tribeca. “Um, are you Ansel?” It’s March 20, the day before Divergent opens in theaters, and Ansel Elgort, 20, has been spotted eating breakfast. He invites the girl to sit down and asks EW to take a picture. The girl’s phone case has two TFIOS quotations on it: “Okay?” “Okay.”
This is a story about romance and patience and finding the person you belong with. It’s also about a cheese sandwich. Last year Elgort was in Chicago playing Caleb, the brother of Woodley’s Tris in Divergent, when he was named one of six finalists for the role of Augustus and flown to L.A. for a “chemistry read” with Woodley. He had already become friendly with his cinematic sibling, but the TFIOS team worried it might be weird for Elgort to go from playing Woodley’s bro to the love of her life. They needn’t have.
Something about the pair clicked. “He sort of towers over her,” Boone says. “Just how tall he is makes her automatically seem small, vulnerable, and young. Other than his acting talent — which is great — he has this gentle-giant quality that really works.”
In person, Elgort is unguarded and friendly, like a 6′ 4″ golden-retriever puppy who doesn’t know the size of his own paws. Elgort finishes his breakfast, happily polishes off an EW writer’s leftovers, and marvels that Woodley didn’t kiss any of the guys in the chemistry auditions. “If I was in that situation? If Gus was cast first and they were trying to find a Hazel? I’d be totally happy making out with all of them,” he says. “I mean, there were some really pretty boys who were trying out!” He grins. “I’d have kissed them all.” After the audition, the native New Yorker went back to his L.A. hotel room, feeling lonely in a strange city. “Shailene called me and I thought she was going to be like, ‘Want to hang out? Are we getting dinner?’” He laughs. “She was just like, ‘Hey, do you have an iPhone 5 charger?’ I didn’t, so she was like, ‘Okay, see you back in Chicago.’”
Woodley still had to read with more actors and didn’t think it would be fair to spend extra time with Elgort. But she later made up for it when it came time to tell Elgort that he had won the role. (“I knew a few days before he did, and the suspense was killing me,” she says.) Taking a page out of the Fault playbook — when Gus surprises Hazel with a picnic and plane tickets to Amsterdam — she packed Elgort a brown paper bag containing a Dutch cheese-and-tomato sandwich to take home with him to Manhattan. Her instruction: Don’t open it till she said so. A few days later, Boone called Elgort to give him the news, and he finally got to open the bag. “I didn’t eat it,” Elgort says. The cheese had gone moldy and the tomato was black. “But I was psyched.”
Read the full article HERE.