By Anousha Sakoui and Devin Banerjee
“Think Like a Man Too,” a comedy starring Kevin Hart, collected $30 million in its opening weekend to give Sony Corp. a second No. 1 debut in U.S. and Canadian theaters in as many weeks.
The sequel to the 2012 film outdrew “Jersey Boys” a Clint Eastwood film about Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons that also opened in wide release, Rentrak Corp. said in a statement yesterday. “Jersey Boys” generated $13.5 million to place fourth for Time Warner Inc.’s Warner Bros.
“Think Like a Man Too” was buoyed by the box-office power of Hart, who turned a successful comedy routine into starring roles on the big screen. Universal Pictures’ “Ride Along,” in which Hart starred opposite Ice Cube, stayed atop theaters for three weekends this year. Smart scheduling has given Sony two winners from low-budget productions and lifted the studio, which has struggled to match the profitability of competitors.
“Given star Kevin Hart’s ever-increasing box office stature, Sony obviously felt confident enough to make it a summer release,” Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst at Rentrak, said in an interview. “Kevin Hart is the personification of a box office insurance policy.”
“Think Like a Man Too,” produced for $24 million, according to Box Office Mojo, was projected to generate $34 million in its opening, the forecast of BoxOffice.com. The original movie, also starring Hart, collected $33.6 million in its April 2012 opening and went on to gross $91.5 million domestically.
The new PG-13 comedy again features Michael Ealy, Jerry Ferrara, Meagan Good and Regina Hall, and picks up with the same couples and their friends. This time, they visit Las Vegas for a wedding, where their misadventures and misdemeanors put the big day at risk.
“The ensemble cast along with Hart proved to be a considerable draw and, as a comedy, offered an antidote to the typical summer blockbuster fare,” said Dergarabedian.
While the film didn’t do it for critics, with only a 23 percent positive rating on Rottentomatoes.com, 79 percent of audiences liked it, according to the review aggregator.
“Hart hits such adrenaline-fueled extremes, it’s exhausting,” Betsy Sharkey wrote in the Los Angeles Times. “If you can look past the cliches and the comic’s high wattage and high-pitched screeching, there are some interesting things going on.”