2 minutes is all that it took Akshay Kumar to say yes to Good Newwz

The super star dropped another script which Johar had narrated to him for over an hour

By Mayur Lookhar

Akshay Kumar, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Kiara Advani and Diljit Dosanjh at Good Newwz trailer launch in Mumbai

Great things are formed out of nothing.  You plan for something but destiny throws up another surprise.  Producer Karan Johar had a similar experience when he went to meet super star Akshay Kumar for a script narration.  For over an hour, Kumar was all ears to Johar but the meet didn’t end up as the latter would have envisaged.

“I remember Karan coming to my house. For close to two hours, he narrated this one big story to me.  I liked the story but then asked him what else are you making?” Kumar disclosed at the press conference.  

Johar then casually mentioned about making a small film called Good Newwz.  “It took just two minutes for Johar to narrate the Good Newwz story. I told him forget that two hour long narration story, let’s do this. I loved this slice of life tale.  To tell you the truth, such an incident has occurred before,” added Kumar.

That’s how Akshay Kumar got on board but for Kareena Kapoor Khan she couldn’t turn down the script nor Dharma Productions.

“When [director] Raj [Mehta] narrated the story,  I personally I thought I was perfect for the part.  I wanted to do the film. I thought it was funny. It is a production house that I trust.  Akshay wasn’t on board that time. I was the first one who came on board.  I didn’t know who the rest of the cast was. I just said I want to trust Raj and so I said yes to the film.”

For Kiara Advani, who was the last to be cast, it was impossible to turn this film down. Says Advani, “I was rolling on the floor when Raj narrated the story to me. I was the last one on board. I knew all three of them were on board. This was a huge opportunity for me. My first film with Dharma that in itself was a big moment for me.”

It must be recalled that Johar had directed Advani in the Netflix anthology Lust Stories [2018].  

And for Diljit Dosanjh, there was  a bigger concern than just liking the script.

“I thought I might be just called for a script narration but I won’t be getting the film,” Dosanjh said casually.

Well, one can’t blame Dosanjh for feeling the same for in the past he had script narration before, but he didn’t get that film.

At this moment, Johar jumped in to remind Dosanjh that had he done that film, then he perhaps wouldn’t have picked Good Newwz.  The producer didn’t name that project.

Well, for Johar it was all but natural to back this film.  Given that he’s become a father through surrogacy, Johar felt an instant connect with script. Interestingly, the Dharma Productions head honcho opined this was a first social comedy from the Dharma stable.

“Hrishikesh Mukherjee always made social comedies. I always aspired that Dharma Production should make a social comedy.  One that entertains you, it makes you laugh, cry and have this feel good factor to it. We never made such a film before”, said Johar.

The producer never misses an opportunity to sing praises of Kumar.  It was no different here when Johar said, “When I went to Akshay’s house, I took a big script because he is a mega movie star.  Akshay has this quality about him. He never looks at the scale of the film. He is one actor who always supported first time directors. That’s rare for a mega movie star in India. He’s never asked me who is the director of the film. Akshay looks for vibes. Within a day, the film was locked, signed and ready to go,”

It’s common at press conference for actors to be facing  a cliched question whether they have experienced something like this in their own lives. Kumar was quick to say, “No, I haven’t faced it and I hope nobody has to face this.  We’ve just based our story on one or two real life experiences,”

Good Newwz is set to be released on 27 December.


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