Amazon has released the first trailer for the belated Coming To America sequel, Coming 2 America, which sees Eddie Murphy reprising his role as Prince Akeem from the original 1988 film.
This one sees Akeem, set to become the king of the fictional country of Zamunda, finding out that he has a son he never knew about — a street-savvy Queens native, Lavelle. In order to honour the former king’s dying wish to raise his grandson as the crown prince, Akeem and his younger brother, Semmi once again head for America.
The original film introduced Murphy as a young royal who moves to New York City to escape an arranged marriage. Murphy’s co-stars from that one, James Earl Jones and Arsenio Hall, will also reprise their roles as King Jaffe Joffer and Semmi, respectively. They’re joined this time around by Jermaine Fowler, Leslie Jones, Tracy Morgan, KiKi Layne, Shari Headley, and Wesley Snipes.
The trailer doesn’t reveal a lot. Instead of focusing on jokes, it’s more interested in touting Murphy and Hall’s many, many roles in the film. That’s not necessarily a bad thing though. Comedies often suffer from giving away some of the best jokes in the trailer. Because Amazon knows people will be checking out Coming 2 America regardless, there’s no need to cram the trailer with the best comedy.
Belated sequels like this are often very hit or miss, so we’ll see how the film does. It was originally scheduled for a cinematic release by Paramount, but due to the ongoing pandemic, the rights to the film were sold to Amazon back in October, so the film will now be released directly to Prime Video on March 5, 2021.
Speaking recently to Complex, Hall explained what he thinks is the key ingredient that makes the sequel work:
“What I love most is we didn’t lose the main agenda, the humor. It’s a funny fucking movie, and I’m proud that we hit all those bumps and checked all those boxes. It’s funny – it does everything you need it to do, but it’s also funny, and I think people will love the additions to it. There are some surprises here that will surprise people who don’t get surprised”.
Hopefully he’s right. Let’s hope the film is more similar to Blade Runner 2049 – not in terms of comedy, of course, but as a belated sequel that lived up to the original – than similarly long-awaited comedy follow-ups like Zoolander 2 and Dumb & Dumber Too.
Craig Brewer, who directed Murphy in Dolemite Is My Name, is helming the film from a script written by David Sheffield, Barry W. Blaustein and Kenya Barris.