AB: Were you always going to adapt it [Thumbsucker]?
MM: No, not at the beginning because I hadn’t done it before but quite quickly on I thought, “Wait a second I can’t imagine directing something I didn’t write. Let me at least try.” I made a deal with Bob: “Let me try the first thirty pages.” And in that first time of adapting it, it really became clear how much cathartic mileage I was getting out of this and how I related to Justin and how much having him as a character was allowing me to say things that I wanted to say, that I needed to say. It’s like you know when you make a part of yourself that’s kinda weak into one of the characters, it emboldens you. You can be strong with it or you can fall down with it and still survive. The facts are very different and most of the details are very different but the emotional underpinnings are very similar between him and his mother and me and my mother. Then the estrangement he had with his dad is totally different, my dad is completely different but the estrangement is very familiar to me. So it became very personal, very quick.
Artworker of the week #51: Mike Mills [kultureflash.net]