One of the movies of 2007 drawing attention for the sharpness of its writing isn’t a Judd Apatow comedy but “Juno,” the sophomore feature from director Jason Reitman (“Thank You for Smoking”), penned by first-time screenwriter Diablo Cody. It’s a comedy-drama about a high-school girl (played by Ellen Page) who finds herself pregnant and decides to choose a couple unable to have their own child to adopt the baby. Featuring Michael Cera as the boy who’s the father, Allison Janney and J.K. Simmons as Juno’s straight-talking but supportive parents, and Jennifer Garner and Jason Bateman as the prospective adoptive couple, “Juno” has attracted attention for the quality of its acting as well as the script.

In Dallas for interviews about the picture, Reitman chuckled anew over the way the screenplay came to be. “[Diablo’s] from Minneapolis,” he said. “She looks like one of the Suicide Girls. She’s got tattoos and punk-rock hair. And there was this producer [Mason Novick] who felt from her blog that she should try writing a screenplay.” (At the time she was working as a “phone sex operator/insurance adjuster and had written a memoir titled “Candy Girl: A Year in the Life of an Unlikely Stripper.”)

“I think she’s the first blogger turned screenwriter,” Reitman added. “It’s kind of incredible. Her blog had a very profane name, and this producer googled that profane word and discovered her accidentally and said, wow, this girl’s got a great voice. As Diablo says, ‘I don’t think he was looking for text when he found me.’ And he said, you should try writing a screenplay. And she sat down and wrote ‘Juno’ in like eight weeks in the Starbucks section of a Target in Minneapolis. I’m not sure if she really believed it would become a movie in the end. [But] when the script hit town, it was a hot script. It sold quickly, and she got a bunch of deals. It’s amazing—it truly is a fairy-tale.

“ I had a friend who knew the producer, and was given the script quite early and just fell in love with it. I was in the midst of actually adapting another book [as he had “Smoking,” from a novel by Christopher Buckley]—I was writing my own screenplay when I read ‘Juno’ and just fell head over heels for it. I thought, ‘I have to make this movie. If I don’t, I’ll regret it for the rest of my life.’

Reitman added, “I think a lot of directing is just reacting to a piece of material, whether it’s an idea from what you see in life on the news, or a book, or a screenplay. In the end, you’re seeing something in another form and feeling a certain experience and wanting to give that experience to someone else. That’s my favorite part of storytelling, or telling a joke—remembering how I felt when someone told me the story, and then wanting to bring that feeling to other people. When you’re making the movie, you’re constantly thinking, ‘How do I make the audience feel exactly as I felt when I read “Juno” for the first time?’”

“The second I read it, I thought of Ellen Page, whom I’d seen in ‘Hard Candy.’ I went to meet her, and it was just like meeting Juno,” Reitman said. And when reminded how most of his cast hails from television, he said, “Maybe I have a thing for TV actors—I have no idea. I tried to pick people who, if they had to be together in a relationship on screen, had something going for that off screen. You can feel that—you can feel the bond between these people.” But from a practical perspective, he added, “There’s a certain professionalism you get with TV actors—they’re used to doing ten pages a day, just working and grinding away. That’s very good for independent film.”

Since both of his films represent unusual takes on provocative topics, Reitman was asked whether doing that was something he intended in all his films. “It’s not my goal,” he said, “but that’s kind of what happened with ‘Thanks for Not Smoking’ and with ‘Juno.’ They took issues that are normally issues that would make tricky films and instead spoke to them in a very frank, open-minded manner that didn’t judge the subject matter or the characters, and I really like that.

“I was trying to do as light a touch as humanly possible on this film. The idea was to treat everyone fairly, and to let the story speak for itself. The film respects its characters—that’s another thing I like about the screenplay. There are so many full-fledged human beings in this film, and the script never looked down on them. This is a film with a stepparent, stepchild, adopted child, single parent. It really examines the idea of the evolution of what it means to be a normal family, and looks at all the versions and treats them equally, without judgment. I’m not sure there’s another movie that does that. It’s something I’m very proud of.”

And, Reitman added, “Juno” doesn’t represent the end of his collaboration with Diablo Cody. “I’m producing her next movie,” he said. “We start in March. It’s a horror comedy called ‘Jennifer’s Body.’ Hopefully, whatever we did for teenage pregnancy with ‘Juno,’ with ‘Jennifer’s Body’ we’ll do for teenage cannibalism.”