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Good morning my neighbours! Prince Akeem, aka Eddie Murphy, is back – in the sequel to film comedy Coming to America.
In the 1988 hit, Murphy’s pampered character fled the African country of Zamunda to escape an arranged marriage. Pretending to be a poor foreign student, he sought love in New York with the help of pal Semmi (Arsenio Hall).
In the latest film, the newly crowned King Akeem and Semmi head off on a new adventure that takes them back to Queens, where it all began.
Many of the original cast are back for Coming 2 America – on Amazon Prime from tomorrow – but what have they been up to in the meantime? Daily Star investigates.
Murphy landed the role in Coming to America straight after Beverly Hills Cop II and the films made him a star.
He’s gone on to launch his own The Nutty Professor franchise where he played many different characters, as well as voicing Donkey in the Shrek films.
But Murphy has also proved he can do serious, earning an Oscar nomination for his role as drug-addicted singer James “Thunder” Early in Dreamgirls – although he walked out of the Academy Awards ceremony after he didn’t win.
He’s been fairly quiet on the career front in recent years, but is heading back to the 80s for his next two rumoured roles – as a very unlikely third sibling to Arnold Schwarzenegger and Danny Devito in Twins sequel Triplets and reviving Axel Foley for Beverly Hills Cop IV.
Turning 60 in April, Murphy has a whopping 10 children including Angel, the result of a fling with Spice Girl Mel B which ended in a paternity row. The star has also released three studio albums.
Hall is a huge star Stateside, where he had a long-running Emmy-winning chat show. The comedian now 65, briefly had his own sitcom and has hosted various shows.
He became a dad in 1998 and stepped back from showbiz to concentrate on fatherhood, but got “hired” by Donald Trump when he won Celebrity Apprentice in 2012.
In 2016, Hall filed a defamation lawsuit against singer Sinéad O’Connor after she claimed he had fuelled Prince’s drug habit and spiked her drink during a party at Eddie Murphy’s house.
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He dropped the lawsuit after O’Connor apologised and retracted her allegation that he supplied drugs to Prince, who had died that year from an accidental overdose.
James Earl Jones
As Prince Akeem’s father King Joffer, Jones was already a screen legend thanks to an incredible acting career stretching back to the 1950s – and of course providing the voice of Darth Vader in the Star Wars films.
Since Coming to America, he’s appeared in movies including The Hunt For Red October and Clear and Present Danger.
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You’ll have also heard him as the voice of Simba’s dad Mufasa in the original Lion King film and its 2019 remake, as well as Vader in the recent Star Wars films and spin-off Rogue One.
Now 90, he’s still working and is back for Coming 2 America. Jones has one child and has been divorced once. He is widower after his wife Cecilia Hart died from ovarian cancer in 2016.
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The Jamaican actress was elegant Queen Aoleon. She worked regularly afterwards and voiced Simba’s mum in the original Lion King opposite James Earl Jones – but it was to prove her final big-screen role.
She died at the age of 57 in 1995 after a 13-year battle with leukemia. She was married twice and had two sons.
Amos played Cleo McDowell, Lisa’s dad, who was also Akeem’s employer as the boss of McDonald’s rip-off McDowell’s.
He went on to play Admiral Percy Fitzwallace in The West Wing and Ed in Two And A Half Men.
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The twice-married actor, 81, has also appeared as a guest on shows including The Fresh Prince Of Bel Air and My Name Is Earl.
The actress and former model played Prince Akeem’s love interest Lisa McDowell. Since then she’s mainly starred in soaps and daytime TV in the US although she also had a role in Whitney Houston film The Preacher’s Wife.
Headley married Christopher Martin, better known as “Play” from hip-hop duo Kid N’ Play, in 1993 but they divorced two years later. They have one son.
Eriq La Salle
After his role as Lisa’s obnoxious boyfriend Darryl Jenks, La Salle has continued to work regularly, most recognisably as Peter Benton for eight years on popular medical drama ER.
He also appeared in 2017 Hugh Jackman superhero flick Logan. La Salle, 58, often works as a director and published his first novel in 2012.
Samuel L Jackson/Cuba Gooding Jr
This was an early film appearance for both actors – Jackson as the “Hold-Up Man” at McDowell’s and Gooding Jr as “boy getting haircut”.
Jackson, 72, has gone on to become one of the biggest stars in Hollywood, appearing in more than 150 films, including Pulp Fiction and playing Nick Fury in the Marvel series.
Meanwhile, Gooding Jr, 53, has appeared in movies such as Pearl Harbor and As Good As It Gets. He also won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his “show me the money” turn in Jerry Maguire.
The comedian was McDowell’s employee Maurice.
And in an interview this week, Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall claimed he was cast because the studio made them include a white actor.
Anderson has gone on to do stand-up, create TV shows and write four books, and he won an Emmy in 2016.
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