In the wake of today’s political climate, Diablo Cody says she likely wouldn’t make a film like Juno, in which the main character is dissuaded from getting an abortion.
During an appearance on Thursday’s episode of the Keep It podcast, the Academy Award-winning screenwriter opened up about her 2007 hit and how it fits in with the current anti-abortion efforts underway in states like Georgia, Ohio and Alabama, which introduced a sweeping bill banning nearly all abortions on Wednesday.
“I don’t even know if I would’ve written a movie like Juno if I had known that the world was going to spiral into this hellish alternate reality that we now seem to be stuck in,” she tells co-hosts Ira Madison, Louis Virtel and Kara Brown.
In the film, after discovering she’s pregnant, the titular character, played by Ellen Page, initially plans on getting an abortion, but is ultimately swayed by a pro-life protester outside of a clinic, who tells her the baby already has fingernails.
Asked whether she would rewrite the film today to take place in Atlanta, Cody shared she “probably would have just told a different story in general.”
Admitting that when she initially wrote the script she “didn’t think that it would ever be a film,” Cody added that she “wasn’t thinking as an activist.”
“I wasn’t thinking politically at all,” she shared, explaining that the film was misunderstood by some as being pro-life.
“The most horrifying thing that came out of that was me getting a letter from my Catholic High School thanking me for writing a pro-life movie. And I was like, I f— hate all of you and I’m as pro-choice as a person could possibly be,” she added.
Addressing Georgia’s extremely restrictive new abortion law — the so-called “heartbeat bill,” which bans most abortions once a fetal heartbeat is detected, which can be as early as six weeks — Cody called the legislation “horrifying.”
“It’s honestly something that I’ve been thinking about, kind of, continuously, like, in an endless dark feedback loop. It just, it sucks so f— bad,” she shared.
However, the screenwriter is “pleased” that the conservative legislation has been met with passionate backlash online.
“it’s been heartening to at least, to observe that people are fired up about it. I wish more guys were,” she shared. “I wish I had something clever to say about it, but I’m just mad.”
The latest anti-abortion effort took place on Wednesday, when Alabama governor Kay Ivey signed into law a ban on nearly all abortions, including those for victims of rape or incest — a move designed to push the Supreme Court to overturn its landmark Roe v. Wade decision guaranteeing abortion access nearly 50 years ago.
Numerous celebrities have spoken out against the new ban, including Lady Gaga, Chris Evans, Busy Phillips, Lena Headey, Andy Cohen and Sophia Bush.
The ban will take effect six months after being signed into law, according to the Associated Press. All sides of the issue acknowledge it will immediately be challenged in court and will likely be halted, temporarily, while various judges weigh in.
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