Warning: BIG spoilers for Fault in Our Stars ahead!
On Friday, the greatly-anticipated Paper Towns hits our big screens, and finally we will see the exhilarating adaptation of John Green's novel brought to life. If you haven't had a peek at the trailer for the movie yet, here it is once again:
It appears we are all in for quite the treat with the new release, and fans will be even more excited to find that a certain familiar face will also be featured, albeit for a brief couple of minutes.
Oh, yes, despite Ansel Elgort's character Gus suffering a tragic passing in Fault in Our Stars, it appears he has risen like a phoenix elsewhere in John Green's fictional universe.
And fans were given a tiny glimpse of this spectacular phenomenon at a special pre-release screening of Paper Towns in L.A. last weekend.
A legendary 2-line cameo
In the movie, when the gang embarks on their epic trip to find Margo, the wild child played by Cara Delevingne, they naturally plan to stop at a few gas stations on the road. Stocking up on their first round of supplies at a store, they encounter none other than Elgort, proudly sporting a giant dragon tattoo on one arm.
If you don't miss the brief cameo, this is really a legendary tribute to the late Gus from Fault in Our Stars, as well as an indication how close everyone got on the set of the movie.
With regard to Elgort's appearance in Paper Towns, director Jake Schreier divulged a little information about the cameo:
“I’m pretty sure it came about at the ‘Fault’ premiere or the MTV Movie Awards, I can’t remember which exact event it was. [...] Elizabeth, the head of the studio, was talking to Ansel and was saying, ‘you should do a cameo.’ It’s one of the nice things about the producers we had on ’Fault’ and just how close everyone got and Nat and Ansel are such good friends — it sort of feels like a family. So I mean, everyone just wanted to make it happen. And then it was the question of finding the right role and the right time, so that we could work it out.”
The issue arose in trying to keep the cameo secret for a while. In particular, the fear was that when people would see him in Paper Towns, they would scream "Gus!" and the tragic irony is that the character dies in Fault in Our Stars.
"It felt like a reunion"
Naturally, the crew was overjoyed to be reunited within a different setting. Schreier continues:
“It also felt a bit like a reunion, because Nat and Ansel are so close. [...] So, I think it was really fun for Nat to have his friend show up and to get to kind of play different roles than they got to play in ‘Fault’ and just have a good time."
And how did it come about that Elgort became the gas station attendant with the tattoos? Well, considering there aren't too many characters in the movie, the job of allocating Ansel a role was not an easy one.
“Our options were limited. It was basically that or he could have been a check-out guy. I mean, I guess he could have played Gus [the Sun Trust building guard], but that could have been a little weird – you know, just the name’s the same.”
So, the role of the gas station attendant it was!
The best part is that Elgort was given free reign in what his minor character would say:
“I think the only line written for that character was, ’Do you guys need a bag?’ Which also would have been a funny thing to be the only thing Ansel Elgort says in the movie, but I thought it was nice to give him improv to put more in [...] Two lines for Ansel Elgort. Tough negotiation. He did well.”
And so I guess here's our cue to go and check out Paper Towns to find out what he chose to say!