Tuesday, July 27, 2021

AAFCA Podcast – Episode 8: Will Packer on ‘What Men Want’

*”What Men Want” is not a sequel but is loosely based on the film “What Women Want” from 2000 that starred Mel Gibson and Helen Hunt. In that version, Nick, played by Gibson, is a chauvinistic ad executive who is struck by electricity and gains the ability to hear what women think.

But In this smart, updated, and more diverse reimagining, it’s the women’s turn to uncover what goes on inside a man’s head. In the film, Taraji P Henson plays Ali Davis, a winner-take-all sports agent who gains the ability to hear men’s thoughts and uses that ability to her advantage in a male-centric profession.

It is not until she meets Will (Aldis Hodge) that she learns to let down her guard and listens to what they are truly saying. The film was directed by Adam Shankman who has directed romantic comedies like “The Wedding Planner” and “A Walk to Remember,” but also musicals like “Rock of Ages” and “Hairspray.”

will packer - what men want screenshot
Will Packer

“What Men Want” is another project from powerhouse producer, Will Packer. Packer is behind some of Hollywood’s most successful afro-centric films to date. According to his bio, he is one of the only African-American producers to have eight film open at number one at the box office. His hits include “No Good Deed, “Takers,” the “Think Like a Man” franchise, the “Ride Along” films, “Straight Out of Compton”, and most recently “Girls Trip, “Night School,’ and “Breaking In” just to name a few of the projects he’s brought to the big screen. On top of all that, Packer has produced television projects as well including “Truth Be Told” and the “Roots” television miniseries.

AAFCA member Justin Key had a chance to sit down with Will Packer during a recent “What Men Want” press tour and provided the interview for this episode. Enjoy!

“What Men Want” stars Taraji P. Henson, Aldis Hodge, Josh Brenner, and Richard Roundtree, and Tracy Morgan. In theaters Friday, February 8, 2019. 

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