The Wedding Ringer

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The Wedding Ringer
TheWeddingRingerPoster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byJeremy Garelick
Written by
  • Jeremy Garelick
  • Jay Lavender
Produced by
Starring
CinematographyBradford Lipson[2]
Edited byJeff Groth
Music byChristopher Lennertz
Production
companies
Distributed bySony Pictures Releasing
Release date
  • January 16, 2015 (2015-01-16)
Running time
101 minutes[3]
CountryUnited States
LanguageEnglish
Budget$23 million[4]
Box office$79.8 million[4]

The Wedding Ringer is a 2015 American buddy romantic comedy film directed and co-written by Jeremy Garelick.[5] It stars Kevin Hart, Josh Gad, and Kaley Cuoco.[5] The film was produced by Adam Fields, Will Packer Productions and Miramax Films, distributed by Screen Gems, and released on January 16, 2015.[6][7]

Despite receiving generally negative reviews, the film was a box office success, grossing over $79 million against a $23 million budget.

Plot[edit]

Jimmy Callahan provides best man services, through The Best Man Inc., for guys who don't have the friends needed for a wedding. Doug Harris, a successful tax attorney, and his fiancée Gretchen Palmer are planning their wedding. Frantically needing a best man and groomsmen, Doug contacts Jimmy's company.

Doug needs a "Golden Tux" (seven groomsmen) to match with Gretchen's bridesmaids, which has never been done before. Jimmy agrees to do it for $50,000, all expenses paid.

Three of Jimmy's friends are recruited as groomsmen: Fitzgibbons, a federal prison escapee, Lurch, who has a nagging wife and Reggie, an airport security guard. They interview for the four remaining spots: they choose Kip, sexy with a stutter; Endo, has three testicles; Bronstein, can dislocate and relocate his shoulder; and Otis, can say sentences backwards.

Doug tells Gretchen that "Bic" is a military priest based in El Salvador, and she insists that he also come to the family brunch. There, Doug gets nervous, almost blowing his cover until Jimmy accidentally sets Gretchen's grandmother on fire. In the emergency room, Jimmy lies to Gretchen's father Ed, that they used to play football. So he challenges them to a match with some of his old college teammates.

Doug meets his groomsmen, all with fake identities based on the last names of famous Los Angeles sports figures—Plunkett, Rambis, Garvey, Alzado, Drysdale, Carew, and Dickerson. Jimmy takes Doug and the groomsmen on fake photo shoots of skydiving, scuba-diving, etc..

When Doug begins to have doubts, they visit Edmundo, who tells him the key is to please Gretchen and her mother Lois and nothing else. To prove how good he is at being a best man, Jimmy takes Doug to a wedding where the best man makes a terrible speech. After, they have drinks and show off their dance moves. Jimmy tells him how he gave an excellent best man speech for an acquaintance which led to his career as a wedding ringer. Doug explains that he moved a lot as a child, so he never got to make friends. When his parents died, Doug took over the business, and work consumed him, leaving him without friends and therefore a best man. Jimmy drives Doug home, and reiterates that they are in a business relationship, and Doug, although hurt, agrees.

At Doug's outrageous bachelor party he is introduced to Nadia, who tries to seduce him, but Doug instead befriends her. A prank involving peanut butter, a dog and a blindfolded Doug's goes awry, requiring the groomsmen and Nadia to rush him to a hospital. When he wakes up the next day, Nadia kisses him goodbye, she hints she would like to know him better. Later, the groomsmen play football with Ed and his college football friends, including Joe Namath, John Riggins, and Ed "Too Tall" Jones. A mud bowl ensues, Ed blows out his knee on the last play and the wedding party team wins.

At the rehearsal dinner, Gretchen's bridesmaids sing a song, while Doug's groomsmen create a slideshow of the fake pictures they took, winning Gretchen over. That night, she notices the Bic razors and Mitchum deodorant in the cabinet, and recognizes the last names of the groomsmen and deduces the scheme. Asking Doug about it, he brushes it off, saying she is paranoid, to which she reluctantly agrees.

On the wedding day, the family priest cancels, so Doug suggests that Jimmy officiate. At the reception, Jimmy congratulates Gretchen, who exclaims that the wedding is a disaster as her zipper is torn, her grandmother has third degree burns, her dad's knee is blown out, the food is bad, and she doesn't love Doug (saying she only married him because he is nice and can easily afford her lavish lifestyle). Doug overhears, telling Jimmy that he can't go through with it, but Jimmy dismisses this.

As Jimmy gives his best man speech, Doug stops him, revealing they aren't really married as "Bic" is not a real priest, nor are his groomsmen who they claim to be. Gretchen is livid that her wedding is ruined. Ed's college friends make peace with Doug and Jimmy and tell them they were good players. Jimmy gets a date with Gretchen's sister, Allison. As they leave, Doug pays Jimmy his $50,000 fee and they accept each other's friendship. Jimmy then has the idea to cash in Doug's first class honeymoon tickets to Tahiti, going instead on a guys trip, along with Nadia (who is now with Doug).

Cast[edit]

Production[edit]

Development[edit]

The film evolved from a spec script titled "The Golden Tux" that was purchased by Dimension Films as early as 2002, at that time Todd Phillips, director of The Hangover was attached as a producer.[9] The film went through many revisions as many actors came and left the project.[10] By 2013, Screen Gems and Miramax had agreed to produce the film, which by then had both Kevin Hart and Josh Gad attached [11] and the name had officially changed to The Wedding Ringer and production had begun.[12]

The film was officially given a date of February 6, 2015.[13] However this was later moved to January 16 after Universal Pictures' Ride Along, another Kevin Hart comedy, proved viable during the previous year's MLK weekend.[14]

Filming[edit]

The film was originally set in Chicago but was rewritten for Los Angeles after the producers won a $2.8-million California tax credit.[15] Filming took place in Santa Monica and Marina del Rey, California over the course of 38 days in the fall 2013.[15]

Release[edit]

Promotion[edit]

Sony Pictures Entertainment released the first official trailer for The Wedding Ringer on June 19, 2014, a "Best Friends" official trailer on September 25, 2014 and a Restricted "Holiday" trailer on December 2, 2014.[16][17][18]

On October 8, 2014, Kevin Hart announced through his Twitter account that he was "doing a college tour" to help promote The Wedding Ringer.[19] Hart said that during this promotional tour, "he is focusing on college students because they are big social-media users" and can help promote the new film. He also encouraged the students to "tweet" about the film.[20]

Home media[edit]

The Wedding Ringer was released on DVD and Blu-ray on April 28, 2015.[21]

Reception[edit]

Box office[edit]

The Wedding Ringer grossed $64.5 million in North America and $15.3 million in other territories for a worldwide total of $79.8 million against a budget of $23 million.[22]

The film was released in North American theaters on January 16, 2015. It grossed $20.6 million in its opening weekend, finishing second at the box office behind American Sniper.[23] For the 4-day MLK Holiday weekend, the film grossed a total of $24.5 million.[24]

Critical response[edit]

The Wedding Ringer received generally negative reviews from critics. On Rotten Tomatoes the film holds a rating of 29%, based on 111 reviews, with an average rating of 4.41/10. The critical consensus reads, "Kevin Hart and Josh Gad might be two great comedians that go great together, but there's little evidence of it on display in The Wedding Ringer."[25] On Metacritic, the film has a score of 35 out of 100, based on 27 critics, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews".[26] On CinemaScore audiences gave the film a grade of "A–" on an A+ to F scale.[23]

IGN gave the film a 6.2/10, stating that "the movie is actually pretty funny."[27] ABCNews gave the movie 3.5/5 stars, stating "Hart and Gad make you laugh simply by showing up. Add a moderately funny script, and The Wedding Ringer is a winner."[28]

Richard Roeper gave the film 1.5 out of 4 stars, acknowledging the chemistry between Hart and Gad but criticizing the "cockamamie premise".[29]

Accolades[edit]

Award Category Nominee Result
Golden Raspberry Awards Worst Supporting Actor Josh Gad Nominated
Worst Supporting Actress Kaley Cuoco Won

Possible sequel[edit]

Director Jeremy Garelick teased a possible sequel involving Vince Vaughn.[30]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The Wedding Ringer". Will Packer Productions. Retrieved 28 July 2014.
  2. ^ "BRADFORD LIPSON, ASC Director of Photography" (PDF). Dattner Dispoto and Associates Talent Agency. Retrieved 10 January 2014.
  3. ^ "THE WEDDING RINGER". bbfc.co.uk. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
  4. ^ a b "The Wedding Ringer (2015) - Box Office Mojo". boxofficemojo.com. Retrieved 10 May 2015.
  5. ^ a b "The Wedding Ringer". Turner Classic Movies. Retrieved March 24, 2016.
  6. ^ Andrew Stewart (27 January 2014). "Sony Dates Kevin Hart Comedy 'The Wedding Ringer' for Martin Luther King Weekend 2015". Variety. Retrieved 21 July 2014.
  7. ^ "It's Official: Kevin Hart's 'The Wedding Ringer' Set for 2015 MLK Holiday Frame". Deadline Hollywood. 27 January 2014. Retrieved 28 July 2014.
  8. ^ "Olivia Thirlby Joins Kevin Hart and Josh Gad's The Wedding Ringer". ComingSoon.net. Retrieved 10 January 2014.
  9. ^ "Dimension fitted for 'Tux' script.(The Golden Tux)(Brief Article)". Archived from the original on 2014-09-21.
  10. ^ "Wearing In The Golden Tux - Movie News - Empire". empireonline.com. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
  11. ^ Mike Fleming Jr. "Screen Gems, Miramax At Altar On Buddy Comedy; Kevin Hart, Josh Gad Star And Jeremy Garelick Directs". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
  12. ^ The Deadline Team. "Screen Gems/Miramax's Kevin Hart Pic Now Titled 'The Wedding Ringer', Rounds Out Cast - Deadline". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
  13. ^ Tambay A. Obenson (18 September 2013). "Release Dates Set For 'Addicted' (2014) And 'Wedding Ring - Shadow and Act". Shadow and Act. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
  14. ^ "Sony Dates Kevin Hart Comedy 'The Wedding Ringer' for Martin Luther King Weekend 2015". Variety. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
  15. ^ a b Verrier, Richard. "Kevin Hart filming comedy in L.A. with help of state tax break". LA Times. Retrieved 10 January 2014.
  16. ^ "YouTube". youtube.com. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
  17. ^ "The Wedding Ringer - Official "Best Friends" Trailer". YouTube. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
  18. ^ The Wedding Ringer - New Restricted Holiday Trailer. 20 November 2014 – via YouTube.
  19. ^ "Kevin Hart on Twitter". Twitter.
  20. ^ Paul Davis. "Standup comic Kevin Hart promotes new film at South Kingstown premiere". providencejournal.com.
  21. ^ "The Wedding Ringer DVD Release Date April 28, 2015". DVDs Release Dates. 16 January 2015.
  22. ^ "The Wedding Ringer (2014)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved April 14, 2015.
  23. ^ a b "Weekend Report (cont.): Solid Starts for 'Ringer,' 'Paddington,' While 'Blackhat' Bombs".
  24. ^ "Weekend Box Office Results for January 16-19, 2015 - Box Office Mojo".
  25. ^ "The Wedding Ringer". Rotten Tomatoes. Flixster. Retrieved May 11, 2020.
  26. ^ "The Wedding Ringer". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved February 20, 2015.
  27. ^ "The Wedding Ringer Review". IGN. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
  28. ^ ABC News. "Movie Review: 'The Wedding Ringer' Starring Kevin Hart, Josh Gad, Kaley Cuoco". ABC News. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
  29. ^ "'The Wedding Ringer': Two likable stars in a cockamamie premise". Chicago Entertainment - Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved 18 January 2015.
  30. ^ "'The Wedding Ringer' Director Jeremy Garelick Hints at Sequel: Vince Vaughn, Kevin Hart, Josh Gad Teaming Up?". Design & Trend.

External links[edit]