“Good Fortune” has encountered some bad luck. Writer-director Aziz Ansari’s original comic feature, starring himself, Keanu Reeves and Seth Rogen, has shut down production amid the ongoing Writers Guild Association strike. Lionsgate made the call Thursday, and all parties are hoping that production will resume at a later date.
According to sources familiar with the film, who also confirmed the shutdown, the production had been operating according to strike rules, with Ansari directing but not writing any additional material or scenes. Picketers previously interrupted production on May 16 and May 17 while it attempted to shoot in Koreatown. While several films have been delayed due to the strike, most notably Marvel’s “Blade,” Lionsgate’s “Good Fortune” is the first studio theatrical that was halted midfilming.
Ansari is a seven-time Emmy nominee and two-time winner for Netflix’s acclaimed “Master of None,” which he created alongside Alan Yang. Best known for a starring role in NBC’s “Parks and Recreation,” Ansari has previously starred in films like “30 Minutes or Less,” “Funny People” and “This Is the End.”
Ansari’s earlier attempt at a directorial debut, Searchlight’s “Being Mortal,” was shuttered midproduction amid allegations of inappropriate on-set behavior by co-star Bill Murray. The film has, at this present time, not restarted production.
“I did something I thought was funny, and it wasn’t taken that way,” Murray told CNBC in April 2022. So this is another case of relatively rotten luck for the filmmaker.
As previously discussed in TheWrap, the mere existence of “Good Fortune” on a theatrical level is encouraging. It is more evidence, alongside Lionsgate’s buzzy “Joy Ride” and upcoming releases like Sony’s “No Hard Feelings” and Lionsgate’s “Strays” that Hollywood is at least trying at releasing live-action comedies in multiplexes again after a pre-COVID slump and a COVID-era near-absence.
The Hollywood Reporter first reported the news.
For all of TheWrap’s WGA strike coverage, click here.