Photo: Paramount Pictures
Eddie Murphy is Coming to America again and this time he’s bringing director Craig Brewer (Hustle and Flow) with him. The Oscar-nominated actor will be returning as his iconic character African Prince Akeem.
The original film first hit the big screen way back in 1988 and the new filmmakers are hoping Arsenio Hall, Shari Headley, James Earl Jones, and John Amos will reprise their roles in this next installment.
The Coming to America sequel will be the second collaboration between Brewer and Murphy. Brewer is currently in post-production on the Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski scripted biopic Dolemite Is My Name. Starring Murphy, Keegan-Michael Key, Wesley Snipes, Craig Robinson, and Chris Rock, Dolemite Is My Name tells the story of Rudy Ray Moore (aka Dolemite), the outrageous comedian (and godfather of rap) who became a blaxploitation star through his kung-fu fighting pimp alter ego during the 1970s.
As Dolemite is set to be released in 2019, Murphy and Brewer are now full-steam ahead on bringing Prince Akeem, Semmi, and the old band back together.
In the original Coming to America, Murphy plays Prince Akeem, who is bored with his sheltered life and not interested in marrying an African princess chosen for him. He and his BFF, Semmi (Hall), travel to New York City and wind up working at a fast food restaurant in Queens.
Emmy-winner John Landis directed the first film from a script by Barry W. Blaustein and David Sheffield. The hit movie earned two 1989 Academy Award nominations, including Best Costume Design and Best Makeup.
Murphy’s trademark of playing multiple characters in the same movie began with Coming to America. Besides portraying the African prince, Murphy also played soul singer Randy Watson; Saul, the white Jewish barbershop customer; and Clarence, the owner of the barbershop.
Prince Akeem succeeded in finding his lady love during his first trip to America. In the sequel, Akeem learns about a long lost son and must return to America to meet his unlikely heir to the throne of Zamunda. Coming to America 2 will be written by Kenya Barris, who created the Golden Globe-winning ABC series Black-ish. Brewer, who has also helmed multiple episodes of Fox’s award-winning Empire, took over directing duties on the film after Warm Bodies’ director Jonathan Levine left the project.
Murphy is excited to get back to work alongside Brewer, saying recently in a statement that they’ve “assembled a great team,” and he is “looking forward to bringing all these classic and beloved characters back to the big screen.”
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Production on Coming to America 2 is scheduled to begin this year.
Are you looking forward to seeing Murphy reprise his role as Akeem in the new project? Let us know in the comments below!