The box office success of Ice Cube and Kevin Hart continues as their buddy cop movie, Ride Along, took in just under $50 million through Sunday to open at number one at the box office.
According to studio estimates, the comedy is set to make the biggest debut for a film released during the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend and is on track to have the biggest opening of January overall.
Of course the brass at Universal Pictures couldn’t be more happier.
“It certainly appears with business at this level and with a CinemaScore of an A and our exit polls supporting that, it’s safe to say we’ll break a few records,” said Nikki Rocco, head of distribution for Universal.
Though this isn’t Hart’s first film to hit number one at the box office, Ride Along’s strong showing at the box office may be the nudge needed to push Kevin Hart into bonafide superstardom. His Think Like A Man movie did open at number one also, but it was considered more of an ensemble cast whereas Ride Along is thought to be more of a Hart lead vehicle.
“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.”
Rounding out the weekend’s top five were Lone Survivor, The Nut Job, Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, and Frozen.