Eric Schlosser wrote the 2001 best-seller Fast Food Nation and co-wrote the script for the film adaptation, which opens locally Nov. 17.nn
How not surprised were you by this fall’s food-contamination scares?
nI know some [spinach] growers [near Salinas], and it’s tragic. It’s important to keep in mind that none of these people want their customers to get sick, including the meatpacking industry. It’s just this system they’re all part of. One of the themes in the movie is that there’s s't in the meat â€¦ [but] there’s s't in the spinach, too.
How hard did you laugh when you were first approached about turning an investigative nonfiction book into a fictional narrative movie?
nNot as hard as I laughed when I was approached by a Broadway producer about turning it into a musical.
What aspect from the book pained you most to leave out of the movie?
nNot to sound glib, but nothing. The only way to do this would be to take the title and â€¦ not have any literal transposition. If there were a documentary made about the book, that would be difficult.
Which would someone least want to see: the process by which food comes to the table, or the process by which movies come to the theater?
nIt’s a toss-up as far as which one involves a higher level of dishonesty, greed and bad faith. I feel lucky that this film was made without all that. But the food you eat is ultimately so much more important, that it’s going to be a tougher thing to see.
The first Kentucky Fried Chicken franchise was born here in Salt Lake City. Should we be proud of that distinction?
nI don’t think you should be proud of what KFC is doing now; everything is just so full of trans fat. But the beginnings of KFC is a great American story.