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2010 Preview: Grown Ups

by Ray Subers
Grown Ups
 

 
January 28, 2010

Release Date: June 25
Studio: Sony/Columbia
Genre: Comedy
Director: Dennis Dugan
Writer: Adam Sandler & Fred Wolf
Cast: Adam Sandler, Chris Rock, Kevin James, Rob Schneider, David Spade, Salma Hayek, Maria Bello, Maya Rudolph, Steve Buscemi, Gary Busey, Norm MacDonald, Tim Meadows
Studio Description: Grown Ups is a comedy about five friends and former teammates who reunite years later to honor the passing of their childhood basketball coach. With their wives and kids in tow, they spend the Fourth of July holiday weekend together at the lake house where they celebrated their championship years earlier. Picking up where they left off, they discover why growing older doesn't mean growing up.
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Analysis: By headlining $100 million grossers like Mr. Deeds ($126.3 million), Anger Management ($135.7 million), 50 First Dates ($120.9 million), The Longest Yard ($158.1 million), Click ($137.4 million), You Don't Mess with the Zohan ($100 million) and Bedtime Stories ($110.1 million), Adam Sandler has been the most consistently successful comedic actor at the box office in the last decade. For Grown Ups, Sandler stars alongside his frequent collaborators Rob Schneider and David Spade as well as Chris Rock.

The big draw besides Sandler, though, may be Kevin James, who has been successful thus far in his transition from TV star to movie star. Though James was support to Will Smith in Hitch ($179.5 million) and co-starred with Sandler in I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry ($120.1 million), he struck out on his own last January when Paul Blart: Mall Cop turned in to a surprise hit, grossing $146.3 million.

Based on the participation of Sandler, James and company, Grown Ups looks poised to keep the streak alive. However, with a plot description that features the death of a mentor and the challenges of getting older, Grown Ups could end up being a more serious movie than Sandler and James' past high concept successes. Each time Sandler veers even slightly dramatic, box office suffers, as evidenced by the performances of Punch-Drunk Love ($17.8 million), Spanglish ($42.7 million), Reign Over Me ($19.7 million) and Funny People ($51.9 million).

Fortunately for Sandler fans, the trailer for Grown Ups is heavy on pratfalls and boob jokes, and director Dennis Dugan was also behind Sandler's Happy Gilmore, Big Daddy, Zohan and Chuck and Larry. Similar to many of Sandler's movies, Grown Ups is scheduled as midsummer counterprogramming, and has a strong chance of adding to Sandler's list of box office achievements.

Related Movies: Big Daddy, I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry, Billy Madison, Happy Gilmore, The Waterboy, Paul Blart: Mall Cop, The Longest Yard, The Benchwarmers, 50 First Dates, Funny People, Cheaper by the Dozen 2

Related Charts: Comedy—Arrested Development; Showdown: Adam Sandler vs. Adam Sandler

Related Stories:
'Funny People' More Pauper Than King of Comedy
'Paul Blart' Does Part in Record MLK Weekend

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