Eddie Murphy’s ‘Coming 2 America’ Will See the Return of Vanessa Bell Calloway as Imani Izzi
The gestating ‘Coming 2 America′ will see the return of Vanessa Bell Calloway (‘Saints & Sinners,’ ‘Dragged Across Concrete’) as Imani Izzi. The film is a sequel to the 1988 comedy starring Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall, and both Murphy and Hall will be reprising their roles of Prince Akeem and Semmi, respectively.
In the first film, Imani was Prince Akeem’s wife-to-be after a marriage arranged by his father. This sequel is bringing back several actors from the original film, already at eight!
Moreover, the rest of the actors, and their roles, are below
- John Amos (‘Die Hard 2,’ ‘The West Wing’) returning as Cleo McDowell, the owner of McDowell’s and the father of Prince Akeem’s love interest.
- Louie Anderson (‘Baskets,’ ‘Sandy Wexler’) returning as Maurice, an employee at McDowell’s, the fictional McDonald’s-like restaurant.
- Paul Bates (‘True Romance,’ ‘8 Mile’) returning as Oha, Prince Akeem’s stiff-upper-lipped manservant and bodyguard.
- Michael Blackson (‘Meet the Blacks,’ ‘Nobody’s Fool’) in an unknown role.
- Jermaine Fowler (‘Crashing,’ ‘Sorry to Bother You’) as Lavelle, a street-savvy Queens native.
- Shari Headley (‘All My Children,’ The Haves and the Have Nots’) returning as Lisa McDowell, Prince Akeem’s love interest and eventual wife.
- James Earl Jones (‘Rogue One: A Star Wars Story,’ ‘The Lion King’) returning as King Jaffe Joffer.
- Leslie Jones (‘Saturday Night Live,’ ‘Ghostbusters’) as Lavelle’s mother.
- Kiki Layne (‘If Beale Street Could Talk,’ ‘Captive State’) as Prince Akeem’s daughter, burdened with feeling like she is the son her father never had.
- Rick Ross (‘SuperFly,’ ‘Uncle Drew’) in an undisclosed role.
- Wesley Snipes (‘Blade,’ ‘Chi-Raq’) as General Izzi, a man who rules a neighboring nation.
- Teyana Taylor (‘Hit the Floor,’ ‘Star’) as possibly the daughter of an African general (who could also be played by Murphy) who wants to kill Prince Akeem and marry his daughter off to Lavelle in order to gain power in neighboring Zamunda.
Also, there is the possibility Dave Chappelle (‘Chi-Raq,’ A Star is Born’) will play the character Baba. He is an old shaman from Zamunda that advises King Jaffe and later Prince Akeem.
Meanwhile, Craig Brewer (‘Hustle & Flow,’ ‘Empire’) is directing the film. Brewer and Murphy recently collaborated on Netflix’s ‘Dolemite Is My Name,’ releasing this year. Kenya Barris (‘Black-ish’) is rewriting a script by original ‘Coming to America’ writers Barry Blaustein & David Sheffield.
Moreover, the premise of the long-awaited comedy is below:
“Akeem (Murphy) is set to become King of Zamunda but then he discovers he has a son he never knew about in America – a street-savvy Queens native named Lavelle (Fowler). Honoring his father’s (Jones) dying wish to groom this son as the crowned prince, Akeem and Semmi (Hall) set off to America.”
Additionally, costume designer Ruth E. Carter (‘Selma,’ ‘Black Panther’) and production designer Jefferson Sage (‘Spy,’ ‘A Simple Favor’) are onboard.
Further, filming will begin this month and wrap November 8th. Locations include New York, New Jersey, Atlanta, and Los Angeles.
Paramount will release the film on December 18, 2020.