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‘We the Animals’ Author Justin Torres Talks Taking Story from Book to Film

Justin Torres didn’t want to have a huge voice in the film adaptation of his acclaimed novel We the Animals. He had never been on a movie set and didn’t exactly know what adapting his book might look like. But after meeting the film’s eventual director Jeremiah Zagar, Torres became a part of the film’s creative force, joining the crew during the casting process and even returning to his childhood stomping grounds to see the scenes acted out.

“If the book was gonna be adapted, it was so much more important to me that it be a work of art,” Torres says of the filming process in a featurette about the adaptation premiering exclusively on INTO. “It’s been such a long experience, but it’s been quite a profound experience.”

He added, “I couldn’t imagine a better adaptation than the way it comes out in the film.”


Mathew Rodriguez

Mathew is a staff writer at INTO. His work has appeared in Mic, Slate and Complex. He loves "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," Flannery O'Connor and female rappers and is working on a memoir.

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