How Boy Erased Outsold Expectations and Became a Powerful Film, Against All Odds

Boy Erased could not be coming at a better time. We’re on the precipice of the midterm elections. LGBTQ+ rights are under attack by an administration that wants to erase transgender people from existence and dismantle protections meant to help the community as a whole. Mike Pence has a documented history with gay conversion therapy. Though the true story of a young gay man who survived a gay conversion camp dates back to 2003, each aspect of his experience is tragically relevant in 2018, perhaps moreso.

Just ahead of the film’s release, I sat down with the man behind the memoir that inspired the film. Garrard Conley has been writing about shame and the dangers of conversion therapy for some time now, but Boy Erased didn’t hit bookstores until 2016. During our chat, we talk about this long journey to publication, the strange path to the big screen with friend and ally Joel Edgerton, and whether or not he’s heard from any of the others at Love in Action since this whirlwind began. Don’t forget to see Boy Erased, too — it’s arguably one of the most important films to be released in 2018.

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