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THINK LIKE A MAN TOO

Think Reunion
When Think Like a Man became an instant hit, grossing more than $96 million worldwide, talk of making a sequel was instantaneous - it simply had to be done. Director Tim Story says, "Shortly after the first movie came out, probably even before, we found that everybody just loved these characters. They had a really good time in the movie. And before the movie came out, we figured, 'Why not do this again?' We started to talk about the ideas and where we could take them. And it was kind of inevitable, just because of the way the project came together in post production. And even when we were filming it, we knew we had something that was kind of special, so we thought 'Why not visit these characters again?'"

The original movie's screenwriters, Keith Merryman and David Newman, were quickly on board to find a new, funny and yet satisfyingly emotional situation for these characters. Knowing Tim Story was back made getting involved all the more appealing. "What's great about Tim is he's very simpatico with us in that as much as we all love the comedy, for the three of us the heart moments and the emotion are as important as any comedy in the movie. It's great to work with a director like Tim. We just share the same kind of vision."

For the original ensemble of actors, there was no question of signing on. The entire cast was in as soon as they heard a second film was in the works. As Kevin Hart, who plays Cedric, observes, "The best challenge in the world is trying to outdo yourself. We did such a good job with Part 1, coming back to do Part 2 was a no brainer-the same director, same producer. And all the cast members came back." He continues: "Having the same cast is a bonus, you know? We're not co-workers - we're friends. Almost family. We've known each other for some time. When you have these relationships and you're in scenes with these people, when you're comfortable, it helps so much more because you're not afraid to take chances."

Gabrielle Union, who plays Kristen, concurs, saying, "To be paid to hang out with your friends, I don't know anybody who would have turned that deal down. We just genuinely enjoy each other."

Working with Tim Story again proved especially appealing, says Regina Hall. "Tim is the best," she says. "There's just this freedom that he allows you, which makes you more confident as an actor, especially comedically. We couldn't ask for anything better."

At the heart of the first film's success, though, was how the chemistry of the cast-on and off the screen-really resonated with the audience. Says producer Will Packer, "People came to the first movie and fell in love. They are invested in these characters, in their relationships, and in their journey. So now we've got a unique opportunity to take those characters-that our audience knows and loves-to a different place. That's what we tried to do with this sequel. Take the characters from the first one, that were based on Steve Harvey's book, and now put them in a more interesting backdrop."

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