What Men Want

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What Men Want
What Men Want 2019 Teaser poster.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byAdam Shankman
Produced by
Screenplay by
Story by
  • Tina Gordon
  • Jas Waters[1]
Based onWhat Women Want
by Josh Goldsmith
Cathy Yuspa
Diane Drake
Music byBrian Tyler
CinematographyJim Denault
Edited byEmma E. Hickox
Distributed byParamount Pictures
Release date
  • February 8, 2019 (2019-02-08) (United States)
Running time
117 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$20 million[2]
Box office$64.1 million[2]

What Men Want is a 2019 American fantasy romantic comedy film directed by Adam Shankman and starring Taraji P. Henson, Aldis Hodge, Richard Roundtree, Wendi McLendon-Covey and Tracy Morgan. A loose remake to the 2000 film What Women Want, the plot follows a woman who, after drinking a potent concoction given by a shaman, gains the ability to hear men's inner thoughts.

The film was released in the United States on February 8, 2019, by Paramount Pictures. It has grossed over $64 million worldwide and received mixed reviews from critics, who praised Henson's performance but said the film was too safe and offered little new to the genre beyond the gender-switching aspect.[3]


Ali Davis is a successful sports agent who is constantly boxed out by her male colleagues. When Ali is passed up for a well-deserved partnership at her firm, she questions what more she needs to do to succeed in a man’s world, until she gains the ability to hear men’s thoughts from an encounter with a psychic (Sister). With her newfound power, Ali looks to outsmart her colleagues as she races to sign the next basketball superstar (Jamal Barry), but the lengths she has to go to will put her relationship with her three best friends, office assistant and a potential new love interest to the test.

Towards the end of the film Ali falls in love and finds out the consequences of her ability to hear men’s thoughts.



In 2017, Paramount announced that it was fast-tracking a remake of the 2000 Nancy Meyers film What Women Want.[4] On November 14, 2017, it was announced that Taraji P. Henson would star in the lead role.[5] On February 2, 2018, Adam Shankman signed on to direct the film. Max Greenfield and Tracy Morgan were later added to the cast.[6][7]

Brian Tyler composed the film music. The soundtrack was released at Lakeshore Records.


Box office[edit]

As of March 17, 2019, What Men Want has grossed $53.4 million in the United States and Canada, and $10.7 million in other territories, for a worldwide total of $64.1 million, against a production budget of $20 million.[2]

In the United States and Canada, What Men Want was released on February 8, 2019, alongside The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part, Cold Pursuit and The Prodigy, and was projected to gross $18–20 million from 2,912 theaters in its opening weekend.[8] It made $6.6 million on its first day (including $1.25 million from Thursday night previews). It went on to debut to $19 million, finishing second behind The Lego Movie 2.[9] In its second weekend the film grossed $10.9 million, finishing fourth,[10] and then $5.2 million in its third weekend, finishing sixth.[11]

Critical response[edit]

On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 45% based on 100 reviews, and an average rating of 5.27/10. The website's critical consensus reads, "Admittedly uneven but easy to like, What Men Want proves a gender-swapped remake can work -- and the odds are substantially improved with Taraji P. Henson in the lead."[12] On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 49 out of 100, based on 25 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews".[13] Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A-" on an A+ to F scale, while those at PostTrak gave it an 82% overall positive score and a 69% "definite recommend."[9][14]

The Hollywood Reporter's Justin Lowe praised the film's pacing and jokes, and said it featured a "predictably satisfying conclusion."[3] Writing for The Washington Post, Sonia Rao gave the film two out of four stars, calling it a "so-so gender-flipped remake" and praising Henson's performance, while adding, "It would make a perfectly fine airplane movie. Or maybe save it for the bachelorette party."[3]


  1. ^ Waters, Jas (14 August 2018). "This is my first feature film credit. This was 3 months of my life last fall that taught me A LOT about A LOT. Grateful to be apart of it. Thank you @willpowerpacker #WhatMenWant in theaters in January". Retrieved 6 February 2019.
  2. ^ a b c "What Men Want (2019)". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved March 17, 2019.
  3. ^ a b c "'What Men Want': What Critics Are Saying". The Hollywood Reporter. February 7, 2018. Retrieved February 9, 2019.
  4. ^ Evans, Nick. "Paramount to develop a remake of "What Women Want"". Cinema Blend. Retrieved 22 Jun 2018.
  5. ^ Fleming Jr, Mike. "Taraji P. Henson to star in Paramount's Remake of "What Women Want"". Deadline. Retrieved 22 Jun 2018.
  6. ^ Kroll, Justin. "'New Girl' star Max Greenfield to join Taraji P. Henson in "What Men Want"". Variety. Retrieved 22 Jun 2018.
  7. ^ Johnson, Zach (14 August 2018). "Taraji P. Henson Cracks the Boys' Club in What Men Want Trailer". EA Online. Retrieved 17 August 2018.
  8. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (February 5, 2018). "'The Lego Movie 2' Will Put The Box Office Back Together Again With $50M+ Opening". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved February 5, 2019.
  9. ^ a b D'Alessandro, Anthony (February 9, 2018). "'Lego Movie 2' Breaks Down To $31M+; 'What Men Want' Solid With $18M+ In Another Blasé B.O. Weekend". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved February 9, 2019.
  10. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (February 17, 2019). "'Alita's Agita At The Domestic B.O.: James Cameron Production Headed To $37M+ 5-Day". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved February 17, 2019.
  11. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (February 24, 2018). "'How To Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World' Ablaze With $55M+ Franchise Record Opening & Second Best February Animated Pic Debut". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved February 24, 2019.
  12. ^ "What Men Want (2019)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  13. ^ "What Men Want reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved February 28, 2019.
  14. ^ "Find CinemaScore" (Type "What Men Want" in the search box). CinemaScore. Retrieved February 11, 2019.

External links[edit]