Eddie Murphy talks about the pressure of making Coming 2 America amazing as he poses with daughter/co-star Bella Murphy
Eddie Murphy is reflecting on the impact of his 1988 classic Coming To America ahead of the release of its highly-anticipated sequel.
The legendary comic, 59, looked like a king while taking the cover of this month’s Essence alongside daughter/co-star Bella Murphy, 19.
And in the accompanying profile, Murphy talked about the ‘unique’ legacy of Coming To America and how important it was to pull of a stellar sequel.
Next generation: Eddie Murphy and daughter Bella took the cover of Essence ahead of their film Coming 2 America, the highly anticipated sequel to 1988’s Coming To America
‘Coming to America is one of my films that has really worked its way into the culture,’ Murphy told the magazine.
‘People get dressed up as the characters for Halloween, and they still walk around saying catchphrases like “Sexual Chocolate.” All of that stuff just kind of stayed around—like Randy Watson doing the very first mic drop!’
But the pressure was on once the possibility of a sequel emerged.
‘The one thing that I didn’t want to do was a bad sequel to a movie that a lot of people have a lot invested,’ he said. ‘A lot of people grew up watching Coming to America. It’s special to them. So, you don’t want to taint that.’
Iconic: ‘Coming to America is one of my films that has really worked its way into the culture,’ Murphy told the magazine
Pressure’s on: ‘The one thing that I didn’t want to do was a bad sequel to a movie that a lot of people have a lot invested,’ he said. ‘A lot of people grew up watching Coming to America. It’s special to them. So, you don’t want to taint that’
Murphy also pointed out the importance of Coming To America as a touchstone in Black culture, saying: ‘The legacy of Coming to America is that it is unique, it’s rare. Black people, we don’t get a lot of movies like this one.
‘Coming To America is a romantic fantasy comedy. Usually, when we see ourselves on the screen, it’s heavy things… Rarely do we get just to go see some escapism. Just to go see a movie and not have to think about any of that stuff.
‘Coming to America is an all-Black cast, but the movie’s not about race,’ he went on.
‘It’s not about, having a foot in your ass or “Wake up” or “Keep hope alive.” It’s none of those things that you can just go and sit back and watch the movie.
Thrice as nice: Eddie posed with Jermaine Fowler and Arsenio Hall for another slick cover
Cover girl: Kiki Layne stunned in a pink gown as she commanded attention on her very own cover
‘And it’s about these people and it’s about somebody that’s trying to find true love. So it’s like a fantasy, like a fairy tale,’ Murphy continued.
‘And that’s the legacy of the movie that it’s one of the few romantic fairytales with Black people. I think that’s why we love it.
‘That’s why 30 years later, we still watch it and they show it on Christmas and all that. Cause it’s this sweet thing.’
Coming 2 America premieres on Amazon Prime Video March 5th. The March/April issue of Essence arrives on newsstands February 23rd.
Prime time: Coming 2 America premieres on Amazon Prime Video March 5th