About Last Night \(2014\)

About Last Night \(2014\) Information

About Last Night is a 2014 American romantic comedy film starring Kevin Hart, Michael Ealy, Regina Hall, and Joy Bryant. Directed by Steve Pink, the film is based on the 1974 David Mamet play Sexual Perversity in Chicago and is a remake of the 1986 film of the same name. The remake features black actors in the lead roles where the roles in the original film were played by white actors. The remake is also set in Los Angeles, California where the original film was set in Chicago, Illinois. Filming took place in late 2012 in Los Angeles. The film was produced on a budget of .

The film premiered at the Pan African Film Festival on , 2014. It was released in theaters on Valentine's Day, , 2014. The majority of critics gave positive reviews, and most critics commended the humor between Hart and Hall. The film grossed on the opening weekend, ranking second after The Lego Movie, which was in its second weekend and grossed .


The official synopsis from Sony Pictures says, "A modern reimagining of the classic romantic comedy, this contemporary version closely follows new love for two couples as they journey from the bar to the bedroom and are eventually put to the test in the real world."


Hart was cast in June 2012. In the following July, Ealy and Hall joined the cast. Hart, Hall, and Ealy had previously starred together in the romantic comedy Think Like a Man (2012), which About Last Nights producer Will Packer also produced. Joy Bryant was cast in August to round out the four key roles.

Hart's role of Bernie was played by James Belushi in the original film, while the role of Joan was played by Elizabeth Perkins. While Joan was not very likable in the original film, Hall said the writers revised the character to be closer to the one depicted in the play. Hall said, "Instead of making her just snarky, there are a lot of levels that she goes to."

Ealy's role of Danny was played by Rob Lowe in the original film, while Bryant's role of Debbie was played by Demi Moore. Ealy said he chose not to see the play or the original film to avoid repeating any performances. He said of the roles of Danny and Debbie, "With Bernie and Joan, they are written funny, they act funny, they are funny pretty much non-stop. [Danny and Debbie] bring a bit more gravitas to the entire story, and reality." Ealy, who was old at the time of release, played a 28-year-old character, so he lost to look more youthful. He also compared About Last Nights depiction of "adult Black people in a sexy, romantic way" to the film Love Jones (1997).


About Last Night is directed by Steve Pink and written by Leslye Headland. The film is a remake of the 1986 film of the same name; both are based on the 1974 play Sexual Perversity in Chicago by David Mamet. Development of the film began in January 2011 when Screen Gems tasked Will Gluck to produce the film and to hire a director and screenwriter. By June 2012, Leslye Headland was hired to write the adapted screenplay, and in the following August, Steve Pink was hired as director. Pink said he liked Headland's screenplay, and he wanted to direct a romantic comedy-drama. He said the story was not high-concept, "It's very simple and grounded in that way. The trick there is to keep it moving. It's in Mamet's original play, and the writers of the first one knew that. So structurally the movie moves quickly because you're moving through a pretty big emotional story in a short amount of time without a lot of high-concept devices."

In contrast to the original film, the remake's starring cast is mostly black. Actor Michael Ealy said the story could be read independently of race and that it did not mean the original film would be truly called "predominantly white". Actor Kevin Hart said, "I feel that what we're doing is making it a little bit more modern, by incorporating black people. I don't think it's just about us being black, it's just a different take on the relationship feel. Our rants are a little different than a white rant. Our way of arguing is different from a Caucasian couple's fights. It's a little more violent. It gets a little more vulgar. Things are said that you don't expect to be said." The Toronto Sun reported that in addition to the all-black cast, the remake would be closer in tone to the source material.

The remake is set in Los Angeles, California, where the original film was set in Chicago, Illinois. The production did not qualify for a California film tax credit, but executives intended to film in Los Angeles regardless. The crew filmed in downtown Los Angeles, not traditionally depicted in films as a people-friendly community. The downtown area had been revitalized in recent years, and the crew chose to film most of About Last Night in a 10-block radius around 6th and Main Streets. Most films are filmed in different locations not near each other, so the setup for About Last Night was unconventional but helped minimize transportation costs. Filming locations in the area included Pacific Electric Building, Cole's Pacific Electric Buffet, Santa Fe Lofts, Casey's Irish Pub, and Broadway Bar. The crew's location manager approached the owner of the local businesses to depict their properties as-is and benefit from publicity in exchange for lower rental fees for use of the space. Dodger Stadium was the sole filming location outside of the radius. Filming lasted for seven weeks in late 2012, and production was completed with a budget of .


Columbia Records produced a soundtrack featuring various artists. The soundtrack was released digitally on , 2014, and it will be released physically on , 2014. John Legend contributed a new song, titled "A Million", to the film's soundtrack.


Theatrical run

About Last Night premiered at the Pan African Film Festival on , 2014 as the festival's centerpiece film. It was released in over in the United States and Canada on Valentine's Day, , 2014. Prior to the film's release, Box Office Mojo said in its February forecast that the box office success of the previous month's Ride Along, in which Kevin Hart co-starred with Ice Cube, boded well for About Last Nights performance. It predicted that the film would gross over the opening weekend. The Hollywood Reporter said based on tracking, the film is estimated to gross over the four-day weekend, including Washington's Birthday on Monday. Variety anticipated that the film would gross between and .

Over the opening weekend (not including Washington's Birthday), About Last Night grossed , ranking second after The Lego Movie, which was in its second weekend and grossed . USA Today said About Last Nights performance "met most analysts' expectations" and that its success was helped by "an aggressive marketing campaign" featuring Kevin Hart. In addition to The Lego Movie, the film faced unconventional competition from two other opening films that are also remakes of 1980s films: RoboCop and Endless Love. About Last Night grossed an estimated $525,000 from late-night screenings on the Thursday before Valentine's Day, which Variety called "a respectable showing". The Hollywood Reporter said on Friday that About Last Night looked to be "outpacing expectations", especially in spite of "dismal weather" on the East Coast of the United States. Forbes reported that the opening weekend audience demographic was and 30 years old. According to the polling firm CinemaScore, audiences gave the film an "A-" grade.

Critical reception

The Los Angeles Times said the initial reviews for About Last Night were "largely positive" and better than those for Hart's film Ride Along, which was released the previous month. It reported that critics found the film "pretty satisfying, if rather familiar" and that the reviews, including negative ones, highlighted in particular "the comic relief of Hart and Hall".

The film review website Metacritic surveyed and assessed 19 reviews as positive, 8 as mixed, and 1 as negative. It gave an aggregate score of 62 out of 100, which it said indicated "generally favorable reviews". The similar website Rotten Tomatoes surveyed and, categorizing the reviews as positive or negative, assessed 53 as positive and 17 as negative. It gave the film a score of 76% and summarized the critical consensus, "About Last Night wanders even further from the David Mamet play that inspired the original, but it benefits from an engaging cast and a screenplay that smartly balances romance and comedy." Tim Ryan, writing for Rotten Tomatoes, said critics found the film "wise about the ups and downs" of love. Ryan said, "The pundits say About Last Night doesn't reinvent the romantic comedy wheel, but it's refreshingly honest and insightful, and it provides a fine showcase for Hart's onscreen talents."

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