Craig Brewer will direct Eddie Murphy's 'Coming to America' sequel
Paramount Pictures have chosen Craig Brewer to direct the sequel to Eddie Murphy’s woke 80’s comedy, Coming to America!
Murphy confirmed the news telling Entertainment Weekly “We’ve assembled a great team that will be led by Craig Brewer, who just did an amazing job on Dolemite [Is My Name], and I’m looking forward to bringing all these classic and beloved characters back to the big screen.”
Brewer’s announcement comes as a surprise since Paramount had previously announced Jonathan Levine to Direct back in September 2017. At the time, Paramount announced plans for the long-rumored sequel hiring Coming to America's original screenwriting duo, Barry Blaustein and David Sheffield to pen the first draft along with Eddie Murphy. Shortly after, Kenya Barris was brought on board to re-write the script with Levine to direct.
Enter Craig Brewer, an accomplished writer and director in both film and television (Empire and Hustle and Flow, Black Snake Moan). The 47-year-old filmmaker is currently wrapping production on Netflix’s blaxploitation bio drama "Dolemite Is My Name" which stars Eddie Murphy as Rudy Ray Moore, the star of 1970's blaxploitation "Dolemite" films.
According to Deadline, Brewer will also serve as producer along with star Eddie Murphy in a sequel that is expected to feature the return of Arsenio Hall as Semmi, Shari Headley as Lisa McDowell Joffer, John Amos as Lisa’s father (Apparently McDowell’s has gone global), and James Earl Jones as the King of Zamunda and Akeem’s father. No word if Eriq La Salle will reprise the 'Prince of Soul Glo' Darryl Jenks. God please.
Sources also confirm that Kenya Barris’ script is said to keep the focus of Murphy, Blaustein, and Sheffield's initial script, which finds Prince Akeem coming back to America in search of his long lost son. Which begs the immediate question: are Prince Akeem and Lisa still together? While it has been over three decades since Akeem and Lisa tied the knot, it’s almost certain change will be a huge factor as we pick up in the present day. The question is, just how much has changed?
I'll say this, I would love to see Barris shake up the script which finds Prince Akeem and Lisa McDowell's first born daughter -not son- eventually taking the throne.
Paramount has yet to set a release but sources say production is expected sometime 2019.