Joe Dunthorne, 29, is the author of 2008's wickedly funny coming-of-age novel Submarine, now a much-lauded film. Yet producers Warp Films came across the book thanks to their then-intern Ally Gipps, 28 – a job he largely credits getting to Dunthorne, his university housemate.
Submarine, in which a Welsh teenager plots to transform both his and his parents' troubled love lives, began as Dunthorne's 10,000-word dissertation for a creative writing MA, and hadn't even been published when Gipps presented it to his Warp colleagues; they loved it and hired the movie director Richard Ayoade.
Dunthorne, a script consultant, describes visiting the set as "totally mad – this real-time version of my imagination played out in front of me." Then there was the successful Toronto Film Festival premiere. "[Executive producer] Ben Stiller flew up and brought one of the Beastie Boys with him; it was insane," says Gipps, now credited as an associate producer on the film. "One of the best weekends ever," confirms Dunthorne.
'Submarine' is out now