The relationship comedy "Think Like a Man" wooed moviegoers away from "The Hunger Games" at the box office this weekend, marking the first time in four weeks the teen blockbuster hasn't come in at No. 1.
The ensemble comedy about five ethnically diverse couples raked in a surprisingly strong $33 million, according to an estimate from distributor Sony Pictures. Heading into the weekend, the PG-13 film was expected to be in a tight race for No. 1 with the romantic tear-jerker "The Lucky One," which came in around industry projections with $22.8 million. The nature documentary "Chimpanzee" also had a good weekend, scoring the highest debut yet for Walt Disney Studios' Disneynature label with $10.2 million.
The strong opening for "Think Like a Man," based on a relationship advice book by Steve Harvey, is good news for Sony's Screen Gems label, which spent only about $13 million to produce the film. Screen Gems — which makes mostly low-budget horror, action and teen comedies – has had a good year at the box office. "Think Like a Man" marks the studio's third No. 1 film in 2012, following the romantic drama "The Vow" and the vampire action flick "Underworld: Awakening."
The movie made nearly as much in its opening weekend as last year's comedy "Jumping the Broom," which featured an African American cast and ultimately collected $37 million. Its opening was also higher than a number of Tyler Perry's recent films, including the comedies "Madea's Big Happy Family" and "Why Did I Get Married Too?" Both debuted with under $30 million.
"Think Like a Man" drew large crowds, with 62% of excited movie-goers being Black women 30 and older who graded the film an "A," according to CinemaScore. No research has been done to see how it played in markets outside of the Black demographic.