It was a family lovefest on the red carpet of “How to be Single” on Wednesday night outside NYU’s Skirball Center.
Dakota Johnson’s proud parents, Melanie Griffith and Don Johnson, couldn’t stop taking pictures of their daughter posing for photogs and giving interviews. That was, until the thesp looked at her mother, laughed and said, ‘Ok. Ok. You’ve got enough (pictures) already.”
Pic, starring Johnson, Leslie Mann, Rebel Wilson and Alison Brie, centers on a woman living in New York and searching for love.
“It’s not a chick flick,” pic’s Anders Holm said. “Weirdly enough it’s a d–k flick.”
Wilson concurred. “It’s not a traditional romantic comedy. The ending is unexpected, and there is a pro-single message. There are a lot of chicks and there are a lot of d–ks. But d–ks, in a good way. The men aren’t a–holes. They are all really cool. So I think guys would learn a lot from going to see this film. It’s really insight into single women.”
Pic, which has been in development since 2008 and began production in the spring of last year, was originally set to star Lily Collins.
“The reason I became involved with this movie is because New Line watched my previous film, ‘Love, Rosie,’ which starred Lily,” pic’s helmer Christian Ditter explained. “They actually asked both of us to make this film, but we had to push the schedule and she couldn’t make it work.”
What did work, Ditter said, was Johnson, who he called “perfect for the part.”
Marc Silverstein and Abby Kohn penned the adaptation of Liz Tuccillo’s novel, with Dana Fox working on the latest draft.
“Of course, we made changes made along the way with regards to the script,” Ditter said. “My big thing was to really take the story out onto the streets of New York and make the city a character in the film. So we tried to take every scene set in a restaurant or a cafe, and put it in the streets of Manhattan.”
The 47-day shoot with over 108 locations made production difficult at times, according to producer John Rickard.
“I’ve never done a movie with so many company moves,” Rickard said. “That made the production difficult because you are constantly up and moving. You don’t always have the equipment you need. So it was a little bit of run-and-gun situation some of the time. But we definitely captured New York in 2015.”
“New York City feels like the star of the movie,” pic’s star Mann added. “Some of the locations were right around the corner from my house, so I got to walk to work, which was great.”
Ditter explained that in spite of working with two of Hollywood’s funniest women — Wilson and Mann — cracking up on set was not the norm.
“Making really funny comedy is really hard work,” he said. “So we worked hard to get to the laughs, and let ourselves laugh when we got there.”