From ‘Soul Plane’ To Success! Kevin Hart’s Trajectory To Comedic Greatness

February 26, 2014  |  

Kevin Hart’s short and funny self is on a roll! And if you thought he had any intention of slowing down, you gon’ learn today!

Think Like a Man Too is on Hart’s horizon along with Get Hard in 2015 — a comedy starring Will Ferrell as Hart’s co-star. Yes you heard me right. Will Ferrell. Kevin is ditching his C-list costars and snagging roles with Hollywood powerhouses like Robert De Niro and Sylvester Stallone in Grudge Match.

Who knew the little munchkin had it in him back when he piloted Soul Plane? Let’s take a look at Hart’s trajectory from “You see, the way I got my bank account set up…” to ” @oprah gave me a big congratulation hug last night.” And we know damn well Oprah ain’t checkin’ for you if you’re irrelevant.

Soul Plane (2004)

This movie is absolutely, positively — for the lack of a better word — ratchet.  A purple plane with spinners? Really? And the safety video was a spoof of the Destiny’s Child song “Survivor”! Not to mention they served KFC in economy class. Though Kevin Hart’s character, Nashawn Wade, owned the plane — Kevin’s performance was drowned out by the likes of Mo’Nique, Snoop Dogg, and John Witherspoon. It just wasn’t his time to shine.

Death At a Funeral (2010)

After Soul Plane, Kevin Hart did a slew of parody films such as Epic Movie, Superhero Movie, and Extreme Movie — which did next to nothing to boost his career. (Do they ever help anyone’s career?) And quite honestly, even during Death At a Funeral, which starred Chris Rock and Martin Lawrence, we still pointed to Kevin Hart and said “Hey, it’s that guy from Soul Plane!” Nothing more, nothing less. Particularly since he wasn’t even in the movie poster. (But Peter Dinklage! He wins every time.)

35 & Ticking (2010)

35 & Ticking provided viewers an ensemble cast of our favorite Black Hollywood actors and actresses. You’ve got Wendy Racquel Robinson, Nicole Ari Parker, Clifton Powell, Kym Whitley — and way, way, down at the bottom of our list, next to Meagan Good, lies Kevin Hart.

Laugh At My Pain (2011)

If you didn’t notice Kevin Hart before, you definitely were aware of his presence during the Laugh at My Pain mania. Having the whole nation in hysterics, people took to social media, memes, and GIFs and Kevin’s jokes spread like wildfire. “Say it with your chest!” a GIF proclaimed. “Pineapples!” another meme said. Laugh At My Pain reeled in $1.9 million in just 98 theaters — “The best per-theater average of that weekend.

Think Like A Man (2012)

People flocked to watch Kevin Hart play Wendy Williams’ divorcée in Think Like a Man and the film grossed $99,105,477 worldwide! Kevin won his very first trophy for the film — a BET award for Best Actor. Of course, since the movie did so well, Think Like a Man Too is in the works. At this point in his career, Kevin Hart is aflame, but not yet on fire.

Let Me Explain (2013)

Ricocheting off Laugh at My Pain‘s buzz, Kevin Hart had us gasping for air in Let Me Explain‘s stand-up routine. The 5’2″ comedy firecracker pulled in a whopping $32,244,051. Kevin financed the movie himself with a $2.5 million budget “which means he took home almost all of the profits,” Forbes said.

Ride Along (2014)

Oh yeah, now Kevin Hart is on fire, baby! Ride Along, a buddy cop flick, took home $41.2 million the first weekend. This is way higher than the $28 million industry “experts” had predicted. “‘Ride Along’ is the #1 Movie in America for the 3rd week in a row! This is huge, I’m about to run outside & smack the sh** out of sumbody,” Kevin Hart tweeted.

About Last Night (2014)

Just a couple weeks later, a frustrated Kevin Hart tweets, ” #1 ROMANTIC COMEDY in AMERICA…make these week a special week by going to see the DAMN movie.” About Last Night, remake of the 1986 film of the same name, didn’t come up to par with Ride Along, but it still did well. “The $12.5 million film has grossed $30 million so far,” Forbes said.

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