"Think Like a Man" Muscles out "Hunger Games" at Box Office with $33M

"Think Like a Man," based on Steve Harvey's dating-advice best-seller, debuted as the top weekend draw with $33 million

Monday, Apr 23, 2012  |  Updated 8:53 AM EDT
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In its first weekend at the box office, "Think Like a Man" beat out"Hunger Games" for the top spot

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The date-night movies "Think Like a Man" and "The Lucky One" finally have knocked "The Hunger Games" off its No. 1 box-office perch.

"Think Like a Man," based on Steve Harvey's dating-advice best-seller, debuted as the top weekend draw with $33 million, according to studio estimates Sunday. That's almost double what studio executives had expected for the Sony Screen Gems ensemble movie, which features Michael Ealy, Taraji P. Henson and Gabrielle Union.

The Warner Bros. drama "The Lucky One," starring Zac Efron in an adaptation of Nicholas Sparks' romance novel, opened at No. 2 with $22.8 million. It also came in a bit above studio expectations going into the weekend.

"Think Like a Man" was produced for about $13 million and took in nearly that much on opening day Friday alone, with business getting even better on Saturday. Sony executives had figured the movie might pull in about $17 million for the whole weekend.

"It was a wild ride. It just got better and better as the night went on Friday. Then to be up so much on Saturday," said Rory Bruer, head of distribution at Sony.

Lionsgate's blockbuster "The Hunger Games" took in $14.5 million, slipping to third-place after four weekends at No. 1. The film raised its domestic total to $356.9 million.

Disney's nature documentary "Chimpanzee" opened at No. 4 with $10.2 million.

Despite some healthy newcomers, Hollywood's overall revenues dipped for the second weekend in a row. Domestic receipts totaled $129 million, down 5 percent from the same weekend last year, when "Rio" led with $26.3 million, according to box-office tracker Hollywood.com.

Revenues likely will decline again next weekend, with no huge newcomers expected to come close to the $86.2 million debut of "Fast Five" over that same weekend last year.

But business should shoot back up after that as the superhero ensemble "The Avengers" launches one of Hollywood's biggest summer lineups ever over the first weekend of May.

"'Fast Five' basically performed to summer box-office numbers in pre-summer last year," said Hollywood.com analyst Paul Dergarabedian. "We're not going to have a 'Fast Five' in late April this year, but that's OK, because we've got 'Avengers a week later, and that'll more than make up for it."

So far in 2012, domestic revenues are at $3.1 billion, up 16.6 percent from last year's, according to Hollywood.com.

Paramount's 3-D version of James Cameron's blockbuster "Titanic" added $5 million to bring its three-week domestic total to $52.8 million. The film's lifetime domestic haul now stands at $653.6 million.

Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theaters, according to Hollywood.com. Where available, latest international numbers are also included. Final domestic figures will be released Monday.

1. "Think Like a Man," $33 million.

2. "The Lucky One," $22.8 million.

3. "The Hunger Games," $14.5 million.

4. "Chimpanzee," $10.2 million.

5. "The Three Stooges," $9.2 million.

6. "The Cabin in the Woods," $7.8 million.

7. "American Reunion," $5.2 million ($9.5 million international).

8. "Titanic" in 3-D, $5 million.

9. "21 Jump Street," $4.6 million.

10. "Mirror Mirror," $4.1 million.

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