Eddie Murphy Says He Rejected Ryan Coogler’s ‘Coming to America’ Sequel Idea Starring Michael B. Jordan

Eddie Murphy’s 1988 movie, Coming to America, is still one of the comedian’s most beloved projects. The Saturday Night Live alum wrote the movie, which followed Prince Akeem Joffer, an African prince from the fictional country of Zamunda, who escapes to Queens, New York, in the hopes of finding true love and evading his arranged marriage.

Arriving in Queens is certainly a cultural shock for Akeem and his best friend Semmi (Arsenio Hall). When Akeem connects with Lisa McDowell (Shari Headley), whose family runs the fast-food restaurant McDowell’s, he’s determined to get her to fall for him without all of the trappings of his wealth and royalty.

Now, more than 30 years after its first debut, Coming to America is getting a sequel, but it’s not the one that Black Panther director Ryan Coogler pitched to Murphy.

Eddie Murphy speaks onstage during the LA Tastemaker event for Comedians in Cars
Eddie Murphy | Emma McIntyre/Getty Images for Netflix

Inside the ‘Coming to America’ sequel ‘Coming 2 America’

Written by Black-ish creator Kenya Barris, Coming 2 America expands the world of Zamunda in the present-day. Prince Akeem is set to become the King of Zamunda. However, on the eve of his transition in his new role and with a rival, General Izzi (Weasley Snipes) coming for his crown, Akheem discovers some shocking news.

Though he has three daughters, the prince finds out about a son Lavelle (Jermaine Fowler), a Queen’s native whom he never knew existed. He decides to return to America to honor his father’s dying wishes to get his son and groom him into the role of the crown prince.

Coming 2 America was initially supposed to release in theaters. However, due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, it will be released on Amazon Prime Video on March 5, 2021.

RELATED: How ‘Coming to America’ Cast Members Updated Their Characters in ‘Coming 2 America’

How many characters does Eddie Murphy play in ‘Coming to America’?

One of the things that fans love most about Coming to America is that the wide range of Murphy’s talent is on display. In addition to Prince Akeem, he also plays three other characters in the movie.

The actor portrays Randy Watson, the lead singer of the soul band, Sexual Chocolate. He stars as Clarence, the surly owner of the barbershop in Queens, and Saul, a Jewish barbershop customer.

Murphy isn’t the only one to show off his wide-ranging talent. In addition to Semmi, Hall also portrays Reverend Brown, Morris, a barber in Clarence’s shop, and an unattractive female clubgoer.

In Coming 2 America, fans can expect to see these beloved characters once again.

Eddie Murphy rejected Ryan Coogler’s ‘Coming to America’ sequel idea

For years, there have been whispers that Murphy was interested in a sequel to Coming to America, now he’s revealing why he rejected Coogler’s Coming to America sequel idea.

“[Coogler] had an idea for Michael B. Jordan to play my son and he would be looking for a wife,” Murphy told The New York Times. “I was like, then the movie would be about the son, it’s not our characters, we already did that. It didn’t come together But all that made me start thinking, maybe we should do a sequel.”

It looks like it all worked out.