Tag: “Ride Along”

“Think Like A Man” Producer Will Packer Renews Overall Deal with Universal TV Through 2017

Will Packer Universal TV
COURTESY OF WILL PACKER PRODUCTIONS (via Variety.com)

Will Packer has renewed his overall deal with Universal Television. The two-year extension pact takes Packer’s Will Packer Productions banner through 2017 at the studio.

“The Wedding Ringer” and “Think Like a Man” producer is taking a major step into TV this fall, executive producing NBC comedy “People Are Talking,” and sitcom “Uncle Buck,” which debuts midseason on ABC. He’s also set to executive produce the “Roots” revival, which will air next year on History, A&E and Lifetime.

“Talking” stars Tone BellMark Paul-Gosselaar, Vanessa Lachey and Bresha Webb as two different couples who are neighbors and best friends. Packer executive produces alongside writer D.J. Nash with director Pam Fryman. “Buck,” a take on John Hughes’ 1989 film, stars comedian Mike Epps as the title character.

“Will Packer is energetic, passionate, creative and wants to win,” Universal Television president Bela Bajaria commented. “He is a collaborative partner, a hands-on producer and is absolutely the best dressed!”

NBC Entertainment president Jennifer Salke added, “Will Packer has become such a fantastic addition to our Universal family. We are lucky to have such an enthusiastic and prolific producer so engaged in network television. Will, Korin [Huggins], and their team truly have their fingers on the pulse of entertaining and fun.”

Packer’s other film credits include “Think Like a Man Too,” “Stomp the Yard,” “Ride Along” and its upcoming sequel, which will hit theaters in January. He’s repped by UTA.

article by Elizabeth Wagmeister via Variety.com

Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart Team Up in “Central Intelligence” For New Line

Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart Central

Following the success of Sony’s “Jump Street” franchise, New Line plans to investigate its own buddy action-comedy, enlisting two of Hollywood’s hottest stars: Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart. The duo will star in “Central Intelligence,” with “We’re the Millers” filmmaker Rawson Marshall Thurber directing the movie.

Scott Stuber will produce through his Bluegrass Films banner, along with Peter Principato and Paul Young of Principato-Young Entertainment. “The Hangover” star Ed Helms is executive producing.

The story begins with a class reunion approaching, as a former high school sports star turned accountant (Hart) is contacted by a classmate (Johnson) who was bullied and humiliated back in the day. The “loser” that the accountant remembers is now a CIA contract killer who ropes him into helping foil a plot to sell classified military secrets.

The original “Central Intelligence” writers are ‎Ike Barinholtz and Dave Stassen, with Sean Anders and John Morris writing a subsequent draft and Thurber taking another pass on the latest script.

New Line plans to begin shooting in the spring with Sam Brown and Michael Disco overseeing. Beau Bauman is managing for Bluegrass.

New Line, based at Warner Bros., has enjoyed success through previous projects with both Thurber and Johnson, and Johnson has a number of jobs lined up at the studio — he is currently attached to return for two more “Journey to the Center of the Earth” sequels and will play Black Adam in superhero pic “Shazam.” He is also set to star in disaster film “San Andreas,” which bows next summer.

The movie gives New Line the opportunity to team two of the biggest names in their respective genres in one film. Hart has enjoyed a lucrative year with both “Ride Along” and “Think Like a Man Too” striking box office gold. Hart recently finished filming the “Ride Along” sequel and has “The Wedding Ringer” for Screen Gems set to open on Jan. 16, followed by “Get Hard” with Will Ferrell for Warner Bros., which will open March 27.

Johnson has shown his versatility in his ability to move from action-heavy movies to comedies with ease, and “Central Intelligence” looks set to combine both genres. The star’s most recent pic was “Hercules,” which has grossed $242 million at the worldwide box office, and he can next be seen in “Fast and Furious 7,” which bows in April. On the small screen, Johnson will executive produce and star in “Ballers,” a half-hour comedy that HBO recently picked up to series.

article by Justin Kroll via Variety.com

Producer Will Packer sells TV Pilot “Like Father, Like Son” to NBC

Will Packer TV Pilot
Will Packer attends Sony Pictures’ ‘Think Like A Man Too’ Miami red carpet screening at Regal South Beach on June 10, 2014, in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Thaddaeus McAdams/Getty Images for Sony Pictures Entertainment)

Will Packer, who produced the hit films Ride Along, Think Like a Man, and Think Like a Man Too, sold a TV pilot for a female cop dramedy to NBC, according to Hollywood Reporter

This marks the fourth TV pilot sale for the 40-year old producer in the last year. Earlier this week, Packer sold an autobiographical comedy to NBC called Like Father, Like Son. His production company, Will Packer Productions, has a first look deal with the network.

This is his first year working in television development.

Packer’s as-yet-untitled fourth project will feature two female detectives from LA who investigate homicides and have complicated personal lives. The hour-long project is being billed as a dramedy and riff on the familiar buddy cop formula. Ride Along, Packer’s last buddy cop project starring Kevin Hart and Ice Cube, raked in more than six times its budget and has a sequel planned for early 2016. Packer is set to return as producer for Ride Along 2.

Packer, however, is staying busy in the meantime. In addition to producing the thriller film No Good Deed, which made more than $52 million domestically against a $13 million budget, Packer is also the producer of the upcoming January 2015 Hart film The Wedding Ringer and the N.W.A. biopic slated for August 2015 titled Straight Outta Compton.

Packer will executive produce the new drama-comedy, with Gossip Girl writer and producer Amanda Lasher set to pen the pilot.

article via thegrio.com

Kevin Hart and Ice Cube’s “Ride Along” Cruising for a Sequel

Ride Along Movie

According to Variety.com, Universal Studios has started pre-production on a sequel to its hit buddy comedy Ride Along, with Ice Cube and Kevin Hart on board to reprise their starring roles.  Ride Along has topped $117 million in U.S. box office after five weekends, starting its run with three consecutive first-place finishes. The film was budgeted at a cost-effective $25 million.

Will Packer, Ice Cube, Matt Alvarez and Larry Brezner will again produce. Tim Story is attached to direct again from a script by Phil Hay and Matt Manfredi. Universal signed the writers to script the sequel last year.  The decision to greenlight Ride Along 2 comes on the heels of the healthy opening of another Hart comedy, Sony’s About Last Night, which took in $27.8 million over the four-day weekend.

article by Lori Lakin Hutcherson

Kevin Hart’s Latest Box Office Success Certifies Star Power

about last night Movie

Kevin Hart more than lived up to his name on Valentine’s day as Sony-Screen Gems’ About Last Night led the charge among couples.  And yet, the comedian-turned-leading man, who stands at just 5’2″ tall, has been quietly building his brand, which has only just blown up at the box office, in order to become one of the most biggest African American stars since Will Smith or Denzel Washington.  Prior to this year, Hart was known more in the stand-up world, with Codeblack-produced and distributed (along with Summit) hits like Laugh at My Pain and Let Me Explain, both of which were preceded by the eponymous Kevin Hart.

In less than two months, Hart has become one of the industry’s sturdiest B.O. players with two major narrative feature hits: Universal’s Ride Along, which became this year’s first $100 million-plus grosser and now “About Last Night,” which topped Friday’s box office with $12.9 million, kick-starting a solid $28.5 million four-day run.

Earlier in his career, Hart had memorable supporting roles in such films as The Five-Year Engagement and Think Like a Man.  Hart’s seemingly overnight hit status also is due, in part, to the recent success of urban-targeted films in general, including The Best Man Holiday and 12 Years a Slave, both of which were released late last year.

Still, neither of those films broke out the way Ride Along has when it scored a rare three straight wins atop the domestic box office.  And while African American-themed films typically do not travel well outside the U.S. (aside from Will Smith — formerly, at least), they are made for a price. About Last Night, for instance, cost only $12.5 million to produce, while Ride Along was budgeted at $25 million.  During opening weekend, Ride Along scored 30% of its gross from Hispanics, with Caucasians contributing 12% of the opening. African Americans still delivered half of the box office, though since then the film’s staying power is attributed to a broadened demo base.  About Last Night, on the other hand, earned an overwhelming 72% of its opening from African Americans.

Regardless, it’s a steady beat for Hart.  Sony is further investing in multi-hyphenate by his upcoming comedy The Wedding Ringer to Martin Luther King Jr. weekend in 2015.

article by Andrew Stewart via Variety.com

 

“About Last Night” 2nd Only to “LEGO Movie”, Earns a Projected $35M Over Holiday Weekend

About Last Night

Benefitting from its strong date night appeal and Kevin Hart‘s current filmic hot streak, About Last Night opened strong on Valentine’s Day and wound up ahead of fellow 1980s remakes RoboCop and Endless Love this weekend, succumbing only to The LEGO Movie, which easily led the box office over President’s Day weekend.

According to boxofficemojo.com, in its second outing, The LEGO Movie added $48.8 million and so far has earned $129.1 million.  Playing at 2,253 locations, About Last Night opened to an estimated $27 million. That’s the best opening for a romantic comedy since 2012’s Think Like a Man ($33.6 million), which also featured Kevin Hart, Michael Ealy and Regina Hall. It is noticeably lower than recent Kevin Hart movie Ride Along ($41.5 million), though that’s a difficult number to match.

According to Sony, About Last Night‘s audience was 63 percent female and 57 percent over the age of 30. They awarded the movie a solid “A-” CinemaScore. Remaining a master builder in its second weekend, The Lego Movie ended Valentine’s Day in a tie with new entry About Last Night, but is expected to zoom ahead on Saturday for a possible $59 million-plus finish over the long Presidents Day weekend.  About Last Night took in $13 million on Friday for a projected four-day opening in the $35 million range.

article by Lori Lakin Hutcherson

Kevin Hart/Ice Cube Comedy “Ride Along” Scores Rare 3rd Straight Top Box Office Finish With $12.3 Million

Ride Along Movie

Continuing its high-flying ride at the domestic box office, Universal’s stalwart holdover Ride Along posted its third straight weekend victory, estimating $12.3 million for a Stateside cume of $93 million and counting.  The Super Bowl weekend’s only two wide releases — Focus Features’ That Awkward Moment and Paramount’s Labor Day, both of which are targeted squarely at female audiences — underperformed, grossing $9 million and $5.3 million, respectively.

Internationally, Disney had another standout weekend with its toon all-star Frozen, which grossed an estimated $24 million from 45 territories, representing approximately 90% of the overseas market place.  So far, the film has collected north of $504 million internationally, with $360 million Stateside (pic’s sing-along re-release contributed $2.2 million out of a total estimated $9.3 million this weekend), making Frozen the second-highest grossing original toon of all time globally, behind Finding Nemo.  Domestic totals managed to stay in line roughly with this time last year, down just 2%, though first-quarter 2013 box office was especially mopey.

As the clear highlight so far this year, Ride Along’s third-straight win at the domestic box office matches what only three films total managed last year — The Butler, Gravity and The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smug — none of which bowed during the first quarter.

Speaking of Gravity, Warner Bros.’ large-screen re-release of the Oscar-nominated 3D epic earned more than half of its $2 million three-day gross in Imax. Gravity has cumed nearly $264 million domestically in over four months.  Among the other Academy Award contenders, both American Hustle and The Wolf of Wall Street became milestone box office achievements for their respective directors: Hustle now stands as David O. Russell’s highest-grossing film, with $133.6 million, while Martin Scorsese’s Wolf is the director’s third-highest, at $104.1 million, surpassing The Aviator.

Film (Weeks in release): 3-day gross*; Locations; Per-theater average; Cume*; Percentage change

  1. Ride Along (3): $12.3; 2,867; $4,295; $93.0; -42%
  2. Frozen (11): $9.3; 2,754; $3,381; $360.0; +2%
  3. That Awkward Moment (1): $9.0; 2,809; $3,208; $9.0; –
  4. The Nut Job (3): $7.6; 3,472; $2,193; $50.2; -37%
  5. Lone Survivor (6): $7.2; 3,285; $2,180; $104.9; -44%
  6. Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (3): $5.4; 2,907; $1,858; $39.0; -41%
  7. Labor Day (1): $5.3; 2,584; $2,051; $5.3; –
  8. American Hustle (8): $4.3; 2,216; $1,940; $133.6; -39%
  9. The Wolf of Wall Street (6): $3.6; 1,607; $2,209; $104.1; -35%
  10. I, Frankenstein (2): $3.5; 2,753; $1,279; $14.5; -59%

article by Andrew Stewart via Variety.com

“Ride Along” Tops Box Office for 2nd Week in a Row with $21.2M Take

Kevin Hart and Ice Cube

According to Variety.com, while Lionsgate’s I, Frankenstein failed to spark audience interest, delivering only an estimated $8.3 million in three days, the domestic box office still saw signs of life, thanks to solid holds from such films as the Kevin Hart/Ice Cube comedy Ride Along and the Mark Wahlberg-starrer Lone Survivor, which led with $21.2 million and $12.6 million, respectively.

In its second outing, Ride Along fell just 49%, lifting its Stateside totals to a sizable $75.4 million; while Lone Survivor, which dropped just 43% in its fifth frame, reached $93.6 million domestically.

The full list of this weekend’s Top 10 follows below:

Film (Weeks in release): 3-day gross*; Locations; Per-theater average; Cume*; Percentage change

  1. Ride Along (2): $21.2; 2,759; $7,670; $75.4; -49%
  2. Lone Survivor (5): $12.6; 3,162; $3,985; $93.6; -43%
  3. The Nut Job (2): $12.3; 3,472; $3,547; $40.3; -37%
  4. Frozen (10): $9.0; 2,757; $3,277; $347.8; -23%
  5. Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit (2): $8.8; 3,387; $2,598; $30.2; -43%
  6. I, Frankenstein (1): $8.3; 2,753; $3,006; $8.3; –
  7. American Hustle (7): $7.1; 2,304; $3,082; $127.0; -28%
  8. August: Osage County (5): $5.0; 2,411; $2,091; $26.5; -32%
  9. The Wolf of Wall Street (5): $5.0; 1,804; $2,772; $98.0; -29%
  10. Devil’s Due (2): $2.8; 2,544; $1,081; $12.9; -67%

article by Lori Lakin Hutcherson

Comedy Based On Kevin Hart’s Life Gets Cast-Contingent Pilot Order at ABC

kevinhartABC has given a cast-contingent pilot order to a multi-camera comedy from hot actor-comedian Kevin Hart and former Community executive producers Neil Goldman and Garrett Donovan.  The untitled Kevin Hart project is based on Hart’s life and stand-up. Written by Goldman and Donovan, it takes a candid look at the post-divorce life of a couple trying to forge a friendship for the sake of their kids, despite differences.

20th Century Fox TV is producing, with Hart, his manager Dave Becky, Goldman and Donovan executive producing. If the project goes forward, Hart likely will play a recurring role. Hart is one of the hottest comedy talents at the moment. Following the breakout success of his 2013 movie Think Like A Man, his latest feature comedy, Ride Along, broke box-office records with a huge Martin Luther King weekend opening.

article by Nellie Andreeva via deadline.com

 

Kevin Hart/Ice Cube Vehicle “Ride Along” Rolls into No. 1 Spot at Box Office

This image released by Universal Pictures shows Ice Cube, left, and Kevin Hart in a scene from "Ride Along." (AP Photo/Universal Pictures, Quantrell D. Colbert)
This image released by Universal Pictures shows Ice Cube, left, and Kevin Hart in a scene from “Ride Along.” (AP Photo/Universal Pictures, Quantrell D. Colbert)

The Kevin Hart/Ice Cube film Ride Along arrived in first place at the weekend box office.  The buddy cop comedy debuted with $41.2 million, according to studio estimates Sunday. The strong opening for Ride Along marks the biggest debut for a film released during Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend and puts it on track to top the $40.1 million record set by the 2008 monster movie Cloverfield for the biggest opening of January.

Ride Along is the first starring role for Hart, whose box-office status has been on the rise since the success of his 2013 stand-up film Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain and memorable roles in such movies as Think Like a Man, This Is the End and Grudge Match.  “He’s everywhere it seems,” said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst for box-office tracker Rentrak. “I know he was co-starring with Ice Cube in Ride Along, but this really was marketed as a Kevin Hart movie. There’s no question he’s a movie star now who doesn’t require any qualifications before his name.”

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