Coming 2 America: Prince Akeem and Semmi return to Queens

After 33 years Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall reprise their roles for Coming 2 America. In the three decades since the first film it has taken on a life of its own in the fashion and brand world. How will the new film take us back to 1988?

“Above and beyond”. Just like that Eddie Murphy announced the upcoming sequel of Coming 2 America that will release on 5th March worldwide. Almost 30 years ago, the globe was charmed by the story of African crown prince and his servant Semmi, played by Arsenio Hall.

The story will get us back to fictional Zamunda, where the King commands his order to find his long-lost son in the US.

They travel to the mainland again to meet the majority of characters from the first part. So, this is the perfect opportunity to refresh the memory.


Back to Zamunda

Eddie Murphy / Photo: Shutterstock - s bukley
Eddie Murphy / Photo: Shutterstock – s bukley

The idea to create the love story in 1988 belonged to Eddie Murphy. Together with the director, John Landis, they made an Oscar-nominated film that still amazes today.

In the wealthy kingdom of Zamunda, the young Prince, aged 21, on his birthday, gets engaged to a beautiful girl, who was, at birth, destined to become a queen.

Akeem, resisting to the rules, decided to go to America for a month and find a wife with his own mind, perspectives and temper.

Amusingly, he meets the future queen, Lisa McDowell, who works in an ordinary fast-food café, called McDowell’s – a knock-off of the popular fast-food chain McDonald’s.

McDowell’s bars, not only set the prominent place in the plot, they are also the beacon for that film. People knew that name connected with Mcdowell’s, seeing it gain success faster than McDonald’s, by far. Here, the prince found his love and started a story that has lasted three decades.


Oscar Winner

The first film was Oscar-nominated twice for the Best costumes and Best makeup and hairstyling. In the first film, characters wore gold-made dresses, their hair decorated with feathers and crowns.

Fantastic, but lack of technologies 30 years ago hampered the movie. But no lack of actors forces Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall to play the majority of roles.

It remains, as in the first `Coming`, and the second as well that sees Eddie Murphy take on five roles – such as a barber, farmer, an old Jewish man and many others.

As we remember, in the original, he played roles simultaneously, with Eddie and Hall divided in the film episodically.


Getting Branded

Deborah Nadoolman / Photo: Shutterstock - Kathy Hutchins
Deborah Nadoolman / Photo: Shutterstock – Kathy Hutchins

McDonald’s was not the only famous thing mentioned in the story. The royal style in Zamunda was copied from the Christian Dior collection.

Designer Deborah Nadoolman, inspired by early models, connected the daily style from the Ivory Coast, Gambia, and Senegal.

The most complicated version of this fashion was jewellery, created by Katherine Post and a costume jeweller, based in Thailand.

This fantastic line in the film was awarded with admiration. It was the icon of African art in the film industry. To project Zamunda’s Royal Palace, Deborah Nadoolman took prototypes from England’s Brighton Pavilion and Henri Rousseau’s 19th-century jungle paintings.

In total, 500 costumes were made for the Royal Family. For Coming 2 America all royal wardrobes will be designed by Ruth E. Carter, being famous for the blockbuster Black Panther.

The basic tendency will be applied from the previous part but modernised for contemporary vibes.


Coming 2 America

Besides a new plot and characters, there will appear beloved King Jaffe Joffer (James Earl Jones), Queen Lisa in cast Shari Headley, John Amos still in the role of Cleo McDowell.

The line-up will be completed with Wesley Snipes, Leslie Jones, Morgan Freeman and Bella Murphy and Son Lavelle will play Jermaine Fowler.

It’s been said Coming 2 America is the most anticipated comedy of the upcoming year. Directed by Craig Brewer, it’s going to be premiered on Amazon Prime Video on March 5th.

Photos: Shutterstock,  

Christian Dior appeared in the first film, and they’ve been making waves outside the film world too:

Dior and Chanel are Changing the Fashion Film Genre

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