‘Paper Girls’ Comic Creators Rave About ‘Rewarding’ Adaptation

Seeing paper girls Going from a comic book series to the small screen was one of the “happiest experiences” for creators Brian K. Vaughan and Cliff Chiang, say the duo Newsweek.

The comic, which consists of six volumes in total, was written by Vaughan and illustrated by Chiang, and is such a personal project for the couple that they were keen to make sure the adaptation felt right.

Fortunately, Vaughan and Chiang were in good hands with showrunner Christopher C. Rogers and his team, they explain to Newsweek.

paper girls Comic Creators Rave About ‘Rewarding’ Adaptation

Main image: Fina Strazza, Sofia Rosinsky, Riley Lai Nelet and Camryn Jones as KJ, Mac, Erin and Tiffany in ‘Paper Girls’. Inset: Cliff Chiang and Brian K. Vaughan at the show’s special fan screening at SDCC, the original comic’s co-creators spoke to Newsweek about the Prime Video adaptation.
Anjali Pinto/Araya Doheny/Amazon Studios/Getty Images for Prime Video

paper girls follows 12-year-old daughters Erin Tieng (Riley Lai Nelet), Tiffany Quilkin (Camryn Jones), KJ Brandman (Fina Strazza) and Mac Coyle (Sofia Rosinsky), who meet while doing their paper road trip after Halloween in 1988.

Their work takes a turn, however, when they suddenly find themselves embroiled in a time war between two rival groups and are thrust into 2019.

Sharing his thoughts on the adaptation, Chiang said, “The comic is so personal to Brian and me and seeing it turn into live action, seeing actresses really take on those roles has been really exciting.

“And it’s amazing how they developed the story. I think it’s a show that will reward fans of the comic, but also those who have never read it.”

Vaughan added: “I love it. It’s just been one of the happiest experiences of my life because every time a cut happens I watch it with my wife and daughter, both beg to look at her.

“And seeing how much they love him, and for very different reasons, has been really gratifying. It makes me very grateful for the work that Chris and his team have done.”

The co-creators then joked about how they “sold their souls” to get such perfect casting for Erin, Mac, Tiffany and KJ.

Asked about the quartet and the actors who play them, Brian said: “I read something online that said, ‘Did Cliff and Brian sell their souls to the devil to have the characters completely ripped from the comics? ? Like, what kind of witchcraft did that?’

“And we comic book nerds are so specific in what we want from our adaptations, and we’re never happy. When someone says, ‘Oh, that person’s hair is fake. who read paper girls The moment they see this trailer, they’re like, “Oh my God, they’re absolutely right.”

“Having just worked in television before, knowing how hard it is to cast one person well, to have four people who not only look like the book, because it’s a thing to do, but just to [have] amazing artists that you’re so invested in, and the fact that they’re all around 12 years old is… Cliff, did you sell your soul for this?”

Chiang replied jokingly “yes, I did”, to which Vaughan added that it “explains a lot” about how they managed to cast actors who could embody the characters they created so well. in 2015.

Vaughan and Chiang serve as the show’s executive producers, but they were quick to give credit where credit was due when asked about their involvement in the show and what advice they would give. have given.

Vaughan said: “I don’t want to take any more credit, the credit really belongs to Chris and his writers and everyone who was there day in and day out.

“But Cliff and I were their kind of benevolent godfathers, kind of watching from a distance as a resource to just say, ‘Listen, we’ll let you know if, as we watch and read, if we sense you’re slipping.’

“And I wish I could say that we often came and said to each other, ‘Oh, no, you’re about to make a terrible mistake,’ but it was really the easiest job I’ve ever had. That was just a delight.

“I think it was about finding the right people and then supporting them, and we found the right people, and we trusted them and we were really rewarded with that trust. spirit of comics, but goes places we never thought we’d go and I’m really happy about that.”

paper girls Showrunner on comic book adaptation

Rogers first encountered Vaughan and Chiang’s comic book series while working as a bookseller at a store called Skylight Books in Los Angeles, the showrunner said. Newsweek.

“I read it as a fan, I read these two guys’ work so much,” Rogers said. Newsweek. “So when the opportunity arose to take on paper girls, my first impulse was like, ‘Yes! But I hope we don’t ruin it because it’s so good and [so] beloved.”

“And you know, there’s so many things that fit that we’re all kind of scared, because if paper girls was never filmed, it would be a great story on its own, it didn’t have to be a TV show.

“But, once we decided to go for it, I think we adopted a few principles that we really took from those guys, which was to take kids seriously, you know, to be able to live in that tone. .

“And it was, it was a really amazing process just because of the young actresses at the center of it, and then obviously the older actors that we were able to kind of attract to the project and the huge world, and d ‘have [Vaughan and Chiang] like our North Star to keep checking around the world, because otherwise, you know, it’s a crazy big story out there and it’s easy to get lost.”

Paper Girls premieres in full on Prime Video on Friday, July 29.

Update 7/28/22 9:12 AM ET: This article has been updated to include an excerpt from Newsweek’s interview with Brian K. Vaughan and Cliff Chiang.

paper girls
LR: Riley Lai Nelet as Erin Tieng, Fina Strazza as KJ Brandman, Sofia Rosinsky as Mac Coyle and Camryn Jones as Tiffany Quilkin in the poster for “Paper Girls” which premieres on Prime Video Friday, July 29.
Amazon Studios

Lisa M. Horner