'Fault in Our Stars' tugs at heart strings in life-affirming tale

Wed Jun 4, 2014 1:42pm EDT
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By Patricia Reaney

NEW YORK (Reuters) - In a summer of blockbusters with superheroes, a rampaging monster and a wicked fairy, "The Fault in Our Stars," the film adaptation of John Green's best-seller, is a heart-wrenching story of young love that could become a box-office hit.

Green's 2012 young adult novel has sold 10.7 million copies worldwide, providing a built-in fan base for the film that opens Friday in U.S. theaters.

The 36-year-old prize-winning author, also known for the vlogbrothers video blog on YouTube, has been tweeting about the film to his 2.47 million followers. And Fandango said it is the biggest pre-selling romantic drama in the online ticket-seller's 14-year history.

"The Fault in Our Stars"- the title based on a Shakespeare quote - features Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort, who last appeared together in the dystopian thriller "Divergent."

"It is a movie that celebrates life and is incredibly hopeful," Woodley, 22, said in an interview. "It is about falling in love for the first time and the beauty of being in love, and all the trials and tribulations and glory that comes from that."

Woodley and Elgort play smart, witty teenagers who begin a romance after meeting at a cancer support group.

"I fell in love with the story and the relationship between Augustus and Hazel," said Woodley, who wears a nasal cannula and wheels around a portable oxygen tank throughout the film.

"I also loved that, at the age of 16, Hazel understood that you don't need to live a long life to lead a meaningful life."   Continued...

Actress Shailene Woodley arrives for a 20th Century Fox presentation of "The Fault in Our Stars" in Las Vegas, Nevada in this March 27, 2014 file photo.  REUTERS/Steve Marcus/Files