‘The Wedding Ringer’ star Kevin Hart the best man for job

Kevin Hart got engaged last summer, so it is somewhat fitting that he’s starring in the new comedy “The Wedding …

Kevin Hart got engaged last summer, so it is somewhat fitting that he’s starring in the new comedy “The Wedding Ringer.”

The comedian plays Jimmy Callahan, a professional best man, who is available to be hired by grooms who are lacking a close friend and doesn’t want his betrothed to know. He’s hired by Josh Gad’s Doug Harris, who is about to get married, but doesn’t have any pals to fill out the wedding party.

amNewYork spoke with Hart about the film, which opens Friday.


How was your relationship with Josh?

Josh Gad is a good dude. Before we even got into the film we met. Josh and I hit it off, because we had a conversation that had nothing to do with entertainment. It’s rare in this business that you can meet entertainers that aren’t afraid to just be people … and Josh displayed that. When I say we literally talked for hours, we literally talked for hours. … He actually made me raise my game. I was able to go to levels that I didn’t know I had because of what Josh was doing.

What did you enjoy about playing Jimmy?

The dope thing about Jimmy is this is the first time I got to play a character that can show levels, not just be funny, but be responsible for telling the story, be responsible for emotional turns and twists in the film. And I think what I did was I put myself in that situation, the situation being a guy who’s so cocky that he feels that his way is the right way. … But the turn is in the emotional side, realizing that my character ultimately needs the same thing that Josh’s is searching for, which is friendship.

What do you look for in a best man?

I need the guy that’s going to send me off with no worries. I think the job of the best man is to take all the pressure off the groom-to-be.

Who are you choosing to be your best man?

I’m going to make my best man my son, that way none of my friends can be mad at me.

Have you been a best man?

I’ve been a best man once and I failed miserably. I didn’t know the rules to being a best man when I was the best man, so I ended up taking my friend to dinner, and afterward, he’s like, “What now? You got nothing planned?” I had nothing planned, so we ended up going back to the room and watching “Die Hard 2.”

Will you be very hands-on for your wedding?

I’m not going to be involved at all. What I’m going to do is give a budget and I’m going to cut a check. I don’t want anything to do with it at all. That’s a woman’s dream, that’s what a woman loves to do, so you stay out of the way. You just give a budget and say … now go have a good time.

Scott A. Rosenberg