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When James Frey‘s memoir A Little Millions Pieces was first published in 2003, it was an instant hit, gripping readers worldwide. But then… it came out that it wasn’t all quite true, that bits (or lots) of it were fabricated. The book was ultimately kicked out of Oprah’s Book Club, which initially helped launch its success.

The quick and tidy way to summarize the resolution to all of this drama: the book is now deemed a semi-fictional novel. To backtrack, readers who felt duped at the time were awarded a refund, following legal proceedings filed by the readers themselves. The books printed since then have an apology from Frey. 

Now that we’ve covered that, we can speed up to now: the book is being made into a movie, with Aaron Taylor-Johnson to star in the lead role. It follows a 23-year-old drug addict, based on Frey’s life (sort of), who has gone over the edge. In an attempt to save himself from his own devices he checks into a two-month rehab center. That’s where he writes what is to become A Million Little Pieces.

Taylor-Johnson caught our eye with his portrayal of John Lennon in the 2003 biopic Nowhere Boy. He then broke through globally with his role as a street-level superhero in 2010’s Kick-Ass. He’s definitely a powerhouse actor who can handle a range of projects, which he proved in the dark drama 2016’s Nocturnal Animals.

He will be working with his wife, director Sam Taylor-Johnson (Fifty Shades of Grey). The two met on the set of Nowhere Boy and are used to their fair share of controversy.

Were you familiar with A Million Little Pieces when it first came out and the controversy that followed? 

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By Brigid Brown