Talking Movies: NRL Superstar Andrew Johns

June 1, 2016
With 2016’s NRL State Of Origin series kicking off tonight, we revisit a vintage FilmInk’s Talking Movies with Channel 9 presenter, Newcastle Knights legend, and NSW Blues champion, Andrew Johns.

Do you have a favourite film that you can watch over and over again?

Good Will Hunting. I just really like it.”

What was the first film that you remember seeing?

“The old Maitland cinema was 40 minutes away, and my brother, Matt, and I watched King Kong. Although when Dad got his first VCR, he hired The Deer Hunter and Woman From Deep River. We were told not to watch them, but we did, and we ended up doing cartwheels down the street! The Russian roulette scene in The Deer Hunter is one that I will never forget.”

Who are your most admired actor and actress?

“Robert De Niro and Meryl Streep.”

Do you have a preferred genre?

“I’m not a big fan of comedy, but I don’t mind a love story; the Meg Ryan romance films are pretty good.”

Do you stay and watch the final credits or do you leave straight away?

“I get out as soon as the lights come up or I get heckled!”

Is there a film you disliked while watching it but appreciated it afterwards?

A Few Good Men is one. On watching it the first time it seemed too slow, but I saw it a second time at the movies and I got a lot more from it.”

When you’re at the cinema, what are your munchies of choice?

“A big water and popcorn…no butter!”

Have you ever left the cinema before a movie has ended?

“The first Mission Impossible. That was a pretty bad movie but not the worst. There was this film I came across once about a woman with blonde dreadlocks who danced…now that was the worst.”

Joey triumphant

Joey triumphant

Are there any movies or specific scenes that a coach has used as inspiration?

“During a State of Origin camp, our coach Gus [Phil Gould] put on an in-house war movie where trusting soldiers in a team was one of the main themes. I think Mel Gibson was in it. [FilmInk suggests that the film is We Were Soldiers]. But I got bagged by the whole team when I picked The Shipping News to show the boys on the bus.”

If Hollywood made a movie about Andrew Johns who could play you?

“Daniel Day Lewis…or maybe Brad Pitt, but I’m not that good a sort.”

Are there any fellow NRL players that remind you of a movie star?

“Stevo [former Cronulla player and current Sydney Weekender presenter, Jason Stevens] thinks he’s beautiful. He’d love to be on Home & Away.”

Are there any sporting themed films that you’ve enjoyed?

“I really like all of Kevin Costner’s baseball movies, especially For Love Of The Game. And Any Given Sunday broke a lot of barriers in sport movies.”

Have there been any movie types that you’ve come across at the footy?

“Dein Perry used our home ground in his [2000] movie, Bootmen, and used one of our ex-players, Tony Butterfield, as an extra. Also at an Origin game when I was out with a knee injury, a guy came up to me and said g’day. It was half way through the conversation, and I realised that I recognised him from LA Confidential – it was Simon Baker.”

The NRL State Of Origin: Game 1 kicks off tonight at 7:30pm. This article first appeared in FilmInk in 2003.

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