Kevin Hart talks Think Like A Man
Kevin Hart talks Think Like A Man
by Wilson Morales
April 16, 2012
Coming out this week is the hilarious, smart romantic comedy ‘Think Like A Man,’ starring a bevy of talent which includes Michael Ealy, Jerry Ferrara, Meagan Good, Regina Hall, Kevin Hart, Taraji P. Henson, Terrance J, Romany Malco, Gary Owen, Gabrielle Union, Lala Vazquez, and Arielle Kebbel.
Directed by Tim Story and based on Steve Harvey’s best-selling book, Think Like a Man follows four interconnected and diverse men whose love lives are shaken up after the ladies they are pursuing buy Harvey’s book and start taking his advice to heart. When the band of brothers realize they have been betrayed by one of their own, they conspire using the book’s insider information to turn the tables and teach the women a lesson of their own.
Hart plays Cedric, a fictionalized version of Harvey, dispensing advice to his friends while dealing with the decay of his own marriage.
Having done numerous stand-up TV specials and some notable films such as Scary Movie 3, Soul Plane, Fool’s Gold, and Meet Dave, the Philadelphia native has started to break out in Hollywood. His ‘Laugh at My Pain’ became history as the first African-American comedian to net over $1.1 million for two-day ticket sales, bumping Eddie Murphy‘s ‘Raw’ from the top slot.
In speaking with Blackfilm.com, Hart spoke about his role in ‘Think Like A Man,’ working with the cast, and his upcoming projects.
As the first one cast in the film, what were your thoughts to the film?
Kevin Hart: I thought the idea if turning Steve Harvey’s book into a theatrical release was a turn-on. Making a smart romantic comedy but from a male’s point of view is something that is different and hasn’t been done. After talking to Will Packer and Clint Culpepper and Tim Story, I told them that not only did I want to be part of the project but as people were being cast in the film, the excitement grew. What we had all talked about became real. Putting together a great cast made it much easier to do a great movie.
You got to do some ad-libbing in the film. How much confidence did you have in yourself to inject the humor in your scenes?
KH: It’s good because Tim Story and I have a relationship. Tim knows where my strengths are not only do I respect him but I respect the writers. There are ways to enhance what’s already good. There are tweaks that can be made and in this movie I did a good job in finding those small tweaks here and there where I can make changes and bring more to my character. I can add more to a scene by a look or noise or whatever it may be. Everything was a conscious decision in the conversation before it happened. I’m glad I got to work with a director who had confidence in me and what I do best and that’s improv and being funny.
Whether you are falling down or making facial scenes, does that come out naturally from you or is it planned?
KH: Yes. I didn’t go to school or having training. I’m just blessed to have the comedic talent where I can be quick on my feet and where I’m thinking and always trying to react and if it requires me to be physical, then I have to be physical but still talk and be heard. I can also include other people around me to the scene without having to say anything to them. Everything I say is a well thought out process.
How much fun was it working with the cast?
KH: Going to work wasn’t work. We looked forward going to work. We have such a great group of people and no egos were involved. No one was high maintenance. No one was rushing to get back to their trailer in between takes. We enjoyed talking after a shot was shot. There was conversation and because of that, the camaraderie and friendships that were built on, transformed into real friendships on camera. The goal was to look like we are real friends and because the chemistry was there, it was done easily.
After Soul Plane, In The Mix, Fool’s Gold, Laugh at My Pain, and this film, do you think the timing is happening for you now to be taken serious in Hollywood?
KH: I try not to think about it. I’m a hard worker. I put blood, sweat, and tears into my personal business. Kevin Hart is a brand and it makes HartBeat Productions a reality. Right now I’m putting myself in position where regardless of what Hollywood thinks, I can control my destiny. I’m in a financial place where I can produce and distribute my own films as I did with ‘Laugh at My Pain.’ Sometimes when people aren’t giving you what you want, you have to do it yourself. You have to provide vehicles that are great for you, and that’s what I’m prepared to do with the films that are coming out. I just did a deal with Seth Rogen for Paramount. I’m on tour now. My stand up is ‘Let Me Explain,’ which will be at Madison Square Garden.
What’s your role in ‘The Five Year Engagement’?
KH: I play a guy named Doug and he’s a grad student for a psych department. In this particular class, we are all understudies of the human mind. Why people think the way they think and do things the way they do. So me and my lab partners come up with different experiments such as ‘How fast do people eat powdered donut?’ and other weird studies for regular human beings to do and we write down their reaction.. Emily Blunt’s character is put in the class and we hit off. It was her and this group of misfits.
Although you didn’t have many scenes together, how was working with Jason Segel?
KH: Jason’s hilarious. We’ve known each other for years. I started off in the Judd Apatow camp with Jason. I did my first pilot ever with Jason. To see him get where he’s at now is amazing. It’s only going to get bigger and better for him.
Why should anyone see ‘Think Like A Man’?
KH: Go see it because there’s no romantic comedy out there like it. You are going to leave with such a great point of view and have a good insight on relationships. It’s a smart movie and you will enjoy it.