Arsenio Hall and Kelsea Ballerini Play ‘Then & Now’ Game
The Coming to America sequel is heading to screens soon, and after more than 30 years, it should be well worth the wait!
The 1988 film starred Eddie Murphy as Prince Akeem, who leaves the (fictional) African nation of Zamunda in search of a wife in Queens, New York. Joining him on the journey is his trusted friend Semmi, played by Arsenio Hall. As the two navigate life in New York City without the riches they are accustomed to, Prince Akeem meets and falls for Lisa (Shari Headley), finding the intelligent, equal partner he was searching for in America all along.
Now, the film’s long-awaited sequel will head directly to Amazon Prime on March 5, 2021.
The new movie, titled Coming 2 America, sees Murphy’s Akeem as the newly anointed King of Zamunda, who, once again, returns to his old stomping grounds of Queens. In addition to the return of Murphy, Hall and Headley, original cast members James Earl Jones, John Amos and Louie Anderson will also reprise their roles in the followup film.
The Shrek star, who, in addition to portraying Akeem plays several other roles in the film, spoke about the film’s legacy on The Ellen DeGeneres Show in December 2019.
“I couldn’t be happier with how it turned out,” he told DeGeneres. “A lot of people have this expectation, like people would say to me when they found out I was doing it, ‘Don’t f–k that movie up.’ So we’ve gone above and beyond what anybody would think. I’m really, really happy with it.”
Coming 2 America director Craig Brewer, who also worked with Murphy on Dolemite is My Name, explained to Entertainment Weekly that reuniting Murphy and Hall was a particularly special experience.
“It is both a joy and incredibly daunting. There’s this moment that I always go back to: when we were screening Dolemite Is My Name, I worked on Empire a little bit, so I had some of the writers come and take a look at the movie. They were all in the back row of the screening room, and Eddie and Arsenio walked in and sat down in the second row, j