Dennis Dugan and Adam Sandler are a comedy dream team, according to the director himself. The two have worked together on a number of films, including Happy Gilmore, Big Daddy, I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry, You Don't Mess With the Zohan, Grown Ups, Just Go with It, Jack and Jill and Grown Ups 2.
Sandler has been slammed in the press after the poor performance of Pixels, which didn't meet box office expectations in its opening weekend and was savaged by critics and moviegoers alike. Dugan, however, has Sandler's back, telling The Hollywood Reporter, "How f--king dare anybody say that he's a s---ty [entertainer]!"
Pixels is playing in 42 percent of the international marketplace, where it placed No. 1 in 23 of 56 territories. In the U.S., it debuted at No. 2 with an estimated $24 million from 3,723 theaters. Ant-Man retained its No. 1 position.
In an interview pegged to Problem Child's 25th anniversary, Dugan admits he hasn't read a review of any of his films since that film and Brain Donors were released in 1990 and 1992, respectively. "To hate Grown Ups is just ludicrous," he says. "It's a funny movie. We didn't mean it to be anything else but a hang-out movie, where you go sit down and get a lot of laughs from a bunch of guys just hanging out."
"I don't give a f--k what [critics] think," Dugan says in response to criticism that he and Sandler have faced over the years. "I give a f--k that almost every one of my movies opens up No. 1 and makes a giant profit for the studio, and people buy them, rent them, quote them and have a good time seeing them."
As such, Dugan reveals, "There's been talk of another Grown Ups, but I don't know where that stands." Grown Ups 2 was Sandler's first live-action sequel, but might he ever reprise his Happy Gilmore role? "I can't imagine he'd ever do that," Dugan says, "but it's Hollywood, so you never say that'll never happen."
To date, Sandler's films have earned north of $4 billion at the worldwide box office.
Sandler's next movie, Hotel Transylvania 2, is in theaters Sept. 25. At the moment, he's focused on his deal to make four movies for Netflix. The first film, the Western comedy The Ridiculous 6, is scheduled for release on the streaming service Dec. 11; Terry Crews, Taylor Lautner, David Spade and Luke Wilson co-star. Sandler is currently filming Netflix's The Do Over, which stars Paula Patton and David Spade.