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John wants to make films he believes in

The actor-turned-producer doesn’t believe in any set formula for success, but says one should just keep on making good cinema to keep the youth happy

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Photos by IANS and AFPJohn Abraham’s banner is planning a few more films
Tabloid on Saturday

He scored a bull’s eye with his debut production Vicky Donor, but John Abraham says he hasn’t cracked any success formula. The success, he says, just lies in doing good work and in knowing what makes the youth happy.

The 39-year-old cringed upon being asked how he managed to crack the “formula” the very first time.

“See ... honestly, if something goes wrong tomorrow, you’ll say ‘What went wrong?’ It’s normal! So rather than basking in the limelight and saying ‘Hey listen, everything is fine’, the important thing is to continue doing good work,” Abraham said.

“I think the formula is very simple as far as I am concerned. As an individual, I believe I know what makes the youth happy in terms of films, and I want to make films for young people, who can go and say, ‘Hey, this is really nice, this was a lot of fun and sensible too.’ So that’s the space I want to operate in now and I am enjoying that space,” he added.

It’s unconventional for actors-turned-producers to let newcomers take centre stage, but Abraham didn’t think twice about letting Ayushmann Khurrana act in Vicky Donor, a film with a subject as strong as sperm donation. The reason?

“I wanted to be a hands-on producer. Most actors produce films that they act in. I wanted to make sure I make films I believe in, even if the cast is otherwise. And I have a lot of faith in Ayushmann. I am producing another film with him. He is an absolutely talented and a complete gem of a boy,” said Abraham, who has cast Ayushmann for another film, Hamara Bajaj.

There are a few other films in the making under Abraham’s banner, he said. “Jaffna was a film in the making for about two years. Because of Jaffna, Vicky Donor happened. That was a film Shoojit Sircar and I were working on. Hamara Bajaj was also a film Shoojit was planning to make with a newcomer, so we decided to take Ayushmann.”

“The fourth film is Kala Ghoda. Besides, we are making three more films, which we will announce later,” Abraham said.

It will be a good mix of films, but primarily “commercial films with smaller budgets”.

“The important thing is casting them right. These days, people make proposals, not films! So the important thing is to make good cinema. If Vicky Donor is a benchmark, I guess people know the kind of films I want to make,” he said.