How The Fault In Our Stars Turned $16 Million Into A Phenomenon

To say that the feature adaptation of John Green's The Fault In Our Stars was a success would be an understatement, especially when we take into account the movie's modest $16 million budget. It's a big week for the Josh Boone directed film, not only because it just released on home video this week, but it also managed to pass the $300 million mark at the worldwide box office.

Deadline reported news of the milestone today. The site also notes that it was producers Marty Bowen and Wyck Godfrey who pursued the adaptation and encouraged Fox to move it forward. Their efforts obviously paid off. The Fault In Our Stars' domestic gross has surpassed $124 million at the box office, $48 million of that was earned in its opening weekend. The film brought in another $174 million-plus internationally, bringing the total to cross the $300 million mark.

Fans of John Green's novel probably don't need an explanation as to how this movie performed so successfully. However, Deadline brings up some good points about the factors that may have helped Fault reach box office success, including the stars of the film,John Green's involvement and impressive social media presence, and Fault's release proximity to Divergent. Were these elements a winning formula for box office success? Let's take a closer look...

Shailene woodley and ansel elgort

Star Power And Good Timing

Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort are up and comers, no doubt. Their talent and chemistry played a huge factor in The Fault in Our Stars turning out to be a great adaptation of a great book. But it also helps that both actors starred -- Woodley more prominently than Elgort -- in the feature adaptation of Divergent, which came out earlier that year and brought in $54 million in its opening weekend. Elgort and Woodley's involvement in Divergent likely helped boost their star power a bit leading into Fault's release.

It seems worth noting that The Fault In Our Stars' total box office surpassed Divergent's. While Divergent performed better domestically, with $150 million brought in stateside, Fault's impressive international gross pushed the film past Divergent's $286 million worldwide haul.


Green Power And Social Media

John Green is no stranger to the internet, and the internet is where all of the people are. That in itself has huge value to a movie in terms of generating buzz and interest. Being smart, personable and charismatic goes a long way, and John Green is all three. The millions of YouTube followers who subscribe to John and his brother Hank's channel can attest to that. The author having his own massive following likely helped add some exposure to the film.

Beyond that, Fox's efforts to promote The Fault in our Stars weren't limited to simply flooding the internet with clips and trailers, but extended to finding ways to bring fans together, including launching a nationwide tour. They also did an advanced screening event called "The Night Before Our Stars, which probably helped boost that opening weekend box office. Tickets for the screening were $25 a piece.

Good book

Good Source Material

Good source material doesn't guarantee a great movie, nor does it guarantee a successful movie. In addition to great direction, a solid script, which didn't stray too far from the book, and outstanding performances by Shailene Woodley, Ansel Elgort, Laura Dern and everyone else involved, The Fault In Our Stars certainly benefited from its source material and the fan base that came with it. Whether it's the romance between Hazel and Gus, the challenges Hazel faces with her illness and her determination to meet her favorite author, or simply Hazel's candid, sometimes humorous narrative, the book has a lot of appeal and it translated nicely to the screen, which likely contributed to its success at the box office.

Fault's June release date may have also played a factor in its box office success. At least, Fox may seem to think so as they just scheduled the feature adaptation of John Green's Paper Towns for June 19, 2015. Will it find similar box office success?

The Fault In Our Stars is now available on DVD/Blu-ray.

Kelly West
Assistant Managing Editor

Kelly joined CinemaBlend as a freelance TV news writer in 2006 and went on to serve as the site’s TV Editor before moving over to other roles on the site. At present, she’s an Assistant Managing Editor who spends much of her time brainstorming and editing feature content on the site. She an expert in all things Harry Potter, books from a variety of genres (sci-fi, mystery, horror, YA, drama, romance -- anything with a great story and interesting characters.), watching Big Brother, frequently rewatching The Office, listening to Taylor Swift, and playing The Sims.