How to Be Single is a 2016 American romantic comedy film directed by Christian Ditter and written by Abby Kohn and Marc Silverstein, based on the novel of the same name by Liz Tuccillo. Starring Dakota Johnson, Rebel Wilson, Alison Brie, Leslie Mann,Damon Wayans Jr., Anders Holm, Jake Lacy and Jason Mantzoukas. It was released on February 12, 2016, by Warner Bros. Pictures.
Alice (Dakota Johnson) temporarily dumps her college boyfriend Josh (Nicholas Braun) and moves to New York City to be a paralegal. She moves in with her sister, Meg (Leslie Mann) an OB/GYN who refuses to have a baby or any form of relationship. Alice befriends wild co-worker Robin (Rebel Wilson), who enjoys partying and one-night stands, and local bartender Tom (Anders Holm), who willfully embraces the bachelor lifestyle. Tom meets Lucy (Alison Brie) at his bar when she uses his Internet for free. She explains she is looking for "The One" using various dating sites.
Alice meets with Josh to tell him she is finished with their break and ready to get back together. Josh explains that they can't because he is seeing someone else, which distresses Alice. Meanwhile, Meg has a change of heart and decides to have a child via sperm donor. She starts dating a younger man named Ken (Jake Lacy) shortly after learning her attempt at in vitro fertilization was successful, however she hides the pregnancy from Ken.
Back at Tom's bar, Lucy has a string of bad dates. Tom witnesses this and realizes he has feelings for Lucy. As her sister kindles her own relationship, Alice continues to pine after Josh. In an attempt to put herself out there, she attends a Wesleyan alumni networking event, where she hits it off with a man named David (Damon Wayans Jr).
Lucy, having been in a relationship for three weeks with a man named Paul, goes to Grand Central Station to send him off to the train. Paul reveals that he has been seeing other people, thinking she was doing the same, and breaks up with her. Lucy, extremely agitated, breaks down at her volunteer job reading stories to children. George (Jason Mantzoukas), who works at the bookstore, soothes her and the two begin a relationship.
Alice and Robin attend Josh's winter holiday party, however Alice finds she cannot watch Josh with his new girlfriend. Walking alone, she runs into David, who shows her a private view of the Rockefeller Christmas tree. Dazzled, Alice thanks him and they begin a relationship. Three months later, as she is singing with David's daughter, Phoebe, David becomes upset with Alice, reminding her sternly that she's not Phoebe's mother. The two break up.
On St Patrick's Day, Alice bumps into Josh and his parents, and he appears pleasantly surprised to see her. Lucy comes to Tom's bar and shows him the swanky outfit she got for herself to share with George. Tom is visibly upset, and he invites Alice to get drunk. The two talk about their frustrations with their feelings for Josh and Lucy, and end up sleeping together in an attempt to distract themselves. Meanwhile, Ken discovers Meg is pregnant, but is eager to help raise her child. Meg, concerned that he isn't truly committed, ends the relationship.
Later, at Alice's birthday party, Robin has invited Tom, David, and Josh without Alice's knowledge. Shaken by the presence of all three men, Alice argues with Robin. Tom goes to confess his feelings to Lucy, who announces she is engaged to George. Now sitting on the fire escape, Alice is joined by Josh. The two make out passionately, but stop when Alice is horrified to learn that Josh is now engaged and was simply looking for closure. Invigorated by a desire to find herself, Alice leaves to go home. Her cab hits Robin, who has purposely jumped on the windshield to get a cab for Meg, who is in labor. Alice and Meg rush to the hospital, where Meg successfully delivers her baby. Ken appears and convinces her to re-enter the relationship, while Alice repairs her relationship with Robin.
The film closes as Alice reflects on her time living alone and being single. Tom is seen repairing his tap water plumbing, which he had purposely cut in an attempt to prevent hungover women from hanging around his apartment. Meg and Ken are seen enjoying their life as a couple, and Robin carries on partying. Alice is seen hiking the Grand Canyon by herself so that she can witness the sunrise on New Year's Day, a dream she always had.
- Nicholas Braun as Josh
- Jason Mantzoukas as George
- Damon Wayans, Jr. as David
- Colin Jost as Paul
- Jake Lacy as Ken
- Anders Holm as Tom
- Sarah Ramos as Michelle
- Brent Morin as Thomas
In 2008, Liz Tuccillo's debut novel How to Be Single was released; the film rights were bought the same year by New Line Cinema, and Drew Barrymore and Nancy Juvonenwere set to produce the film through Flower Films. Abby Kohn and Marc Silverstein were hired to adapt the novel. On March 15, 2011, it was announced that Barrymore would also direct the romantic comedy film. On December 17, 2013, New Line set Love, Rosie's director Christian Ditter to direct instead, with Barrymore and Juvonen still producing, while Dana Fox wrote the next draft of the film, which Warner Bros. would release.
Lily Collins was in early talks on February 24, 2014, to join the cast of the film. Alison Brie was in talks to join the film on June 19, 2014. Dakota Johnson, Rebel Wilson, andLeslie Mann were all cast in the film on January 29, 2015. Damon Wayans, Jr. was added to the cast on March 6, 2015. Jason Mantzoukas and Nicholas Braun were also cast, on April 14, 2015; Braun played the love interest of Johnson's character, while Mantzoukas played the love interest of Brie's. Anders Holm was cast as Tom, and Saturday Night Live performer Colin Jost was also cast in a supporting role.
How to Be Single was released on February 12, 2016.
How to Be Single grossed $46.8 million in North America and $62.5 million in other territories for a worldwide total of $109.3 million, against a budget of $38 million.
The film was released on February 12, 2016, alongside Deadpool and Zoolander 2. Over its four-day President's Day opening weekend, the film was projected to gross $20–25 million from 3,343 theaters. The film made $700,000 from its Thursday night previews and $5.3 million on its first day. It went on to gross $17.9 million in its opening weekend, finishing third at the box office behind Deadpool ($132.8 million) and Kung Fu Panda 3 ($19.8 million). In its second weekend the film grossed $8.2 million (a 54% drop), finishing fifth at the box office.
How to Be Single received mixed reviews from critics. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film has a rating of 49%, based on 126 reviews, with an average rating of 5.2/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "How to Be Single boasts the rough outline of a feminist rom-com, but too willingly indulges in the genre conventions it wants to subvert." On Metacritic, the film has a score of 51 out of 100, based on 32 critics, indicating "mixed or average reviews". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "B" on an A+ to F scale.