*Universal’s “Ride Along” grossed a solid $1.1 million as it began rolling out in theaters at 8 p.m. Thursday, on the eve of the long Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday weekend.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the film is expected to beat Paramount’s “Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit” with a four-day debut in the low- to mid-$30 million range, marking a major win for Kevin Hart as he stars for the first time as a comedy lead.
Thursday night numbers weren’t immediately available for “Jack Ryan,” although rivals suggested “Ride Along” easily came in ahead.
Last fall, Universal’s “The Best Man Holiday” took in $750,000 on Thursday night on its way to a three-day debut of $30.1 million.
“Ride Along” stars Hart opposite Ice Cube and was directed by Tim Story (“Think Like a Man”). Last year, Hart took the box office by storm with stand-up comedy-concert pic “Kevin Hart: Let Me Explain,” which took in north of $32 million. “Ride Along” is sparking the strongest interest among young men.