"Coming to America" screenwriters say sequel centers on Prince Akeem searching for "long-lost son"
TM & COPYRIGHT © 1988 BY PARAMOUNT PICTURES. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.(LOS ANGELES) — Coming to America is coming to theaters…again.
The sequel, which will be a follow-up to the 1988 comedy starring Eddie Murphy, will be called Coming 2 America,” according to the film’s IMDb page.
David Sheffield, the original film’s screenwriter, told ABC’s Good Morning America that he and his co-writer Barry Blaustein were personally called by Murphy to pen a draft of the sequel.
“Eddie called us and said, ‘We’re going to do a sequel. We have a notion and an idea,'” he recalled.
“It began with the notion that [Murphy’s character Prince Akeem] has to find his son, who can become the king because the country has this tradition that the eldest male [will take the throne],” Sheffield continued. “So it’s Eddie pursuing his long-lost son, who’s an American. That was the basis of it. That was the beginning.”
Blaustein told GMA that the two “wrote it last summer” after having several meetings at Murphy’s Los Angeles home, later renting an apartment to finalize the script.
“Everyone seemed to love it,” he added.
Sheffield said that Paramount, the same studio that released the original film 30 years ago, tapped Black-ish creator Kenya Barris to “punch up” the script. Snatched director Jonathan Levine has agreed to direct the sequel, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Although both screenwriters are thrilled to see the story of Prince Akeem and his bride Lisa McDowell continue, they admitted to pushing back on the idea for decades.
“We had resisted doing a sequel for a long time because we thought it was pretty much a ‘fade to complete,'” Sheffield said, using video editing jargon.
“We thought it was self-contained… Akeem’s story was complete. He met the woman of his dreams and we didn’t want to mess with that.”
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