The Idea of You author regrets book and films description as “Harry Styles fan fiction”

Even if you haven’t seen the new Anne Hathaway Prime Video film, The Idea of You, you’ve probably heard that the plot — a 40-year-old divorced mom and the much-younger singer in a British boy band fall in love — was inspired by Harry Styles. Some people have even described the book and movie as “Harry Styles fan fiction,” but the woman who wrote the book the movie is based on would like everyone to stop thinking that way.

The Idea of You author Robinne Lee tells Entertainment Weekly, “I don’t consider it fan fiction at all, Harry was one of multiple people who went into creating [the character of] Hayes Campbell — he was the only one in a British boy band that was current at the time, I guess, and so that’s what people have latched onto.”

“It’s unfortunate because it’s being used as clickbait, and when I’m writing for Hayes, I’m not picturing Harry Styles,” she insists. 

While Lee once said that Harry was one of the inspirations for the character, she also said Eddie Redmayne, Prince Harry and some of her exes were in there. Now, she tells EW that John F. Kennedy Jr., the guys in Duran Duran and late INXS frontman Michael Hutchence were additional inspirations.

“It’s picking and choosing what I wanted from different people,” she notes. “You create your character and you make him what you want to make him. He feels very real to me, and I think Harry’s just what people gravitated to.”

“But he’s not Harry in my head when I’m writing for him,” she continues. “He is not Harry and he’s not living Harry’s life. He’s very much his own person to me.”

 

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