Boy Erased creator Joel Edgerton talks about the way to fame

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Edgerton, the Golden Globe-nominated star of The Great Gatsby and Loving, is talking about his latest film, Boy Erased, a gay conversion therapy drama that he directed, wrote and played in. The script is based on a real story told by Garrard Conley, whose Christian parents sent him to the conversion camp when he came out to them. Conley’s book landed on Edgerton’s reading list by way of Anonymous Content producer Kerry Kohansky Roberts and his own agent, who had just moved to Anonymous. Knowing that Edgerton was on the lookout for material for his second feature-length directorial effort—after 2015’s excellent horror film The Gift— they gave him the book but he still doubted whether it was worth the efforts. During a two-week break from shooting the Jennifer Lawrence-starring thriller Red Sparrow in Budapest in early 2017, Edgerton found himself writing a couple of scenes based on Conley’s book which later developed into the full script and that’s when the director realized that he would carry it all to the end. He understands that the LGBT watchers might not have believed the gay story told by a straight cis man, so he tried to make the cast and crew as queer as possible. Boy Erased features not only the Australian gay pop star Troye Sivan, but openly gay actor-director Xavier Dolan, openly lesbian veteran star Cherry Jones, and a wealth of supporting queer actors. And behind the scenes, “I had a great support team of representation in terms of the LGBTQ community,” Edgerton says.

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