A Minute With: Rob Reiner "Flipped" over love

Thu Aug 5, 2010 12:18pm EDT
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By Bob Tourtellotte

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Rob Reiner has directed hit films such as "When Harry Met Sally," "This Is Spinal Tap" and "Stand By Me." His new movie "Flipped" is a coming-of-age romantic comedy that opens in major U.S. cites on Friday.

"Flipped" stars Madeline Carroll and Callan McAuliffe as two kids in eighth grade who are experiencing the ups-and-downs of first love.

Reiner, who will also be remembered as Mike "Meathead" Stivic on TV sitcom "All In The Family," talked about making the film, his love of politics and why he'll never run for office.

Q: How do you go about deciding what your next project will be, and what made you choose this?

A: "I always look for something I can connect with, with characters I can relate to, that are going through something I've been through or am going through, so I can understand the emotions. That's the only way I can do it. And when I read the book this is based on, by Wendelin Van Draanen, it reminded me of the feelings I had when I was 12, of first love. It was very similar to the feelings I had when I did 'Stand By Me.'"

Q: Is it true that your son introduced you to the book?

A: "Absolutely. He was 11, in the 5th grade, got assigned it, and asked me to read it with him. And I was just blown away by how intelligent and sophisticated it was, and how really understanding it was of all those powerful and complicated feelings of first love. She really captured what girls and boys actually go through. It wasn't a juvenile take on it. It was very profound and insightful."

Q: The book was set in the present, but you changed it to the late '50s and early '60s. Why?   Continued...

<p>Director Rob Reiner attends the premiere of his film "Flipped" in Los Angeles July 26, 2010. REUTERS/Phil McCarten</p>