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Eddie Murphy And Arsenio Hall Say They Were Forced To Hire White Actor In Coming To America

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Eddie Murphy And Arsenio Hall Say They Were Forced To Hire White Actor In Coming To America

Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall revealed that they were forced to put a white actor in the original Coming to America.

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Appearing on Jimmy Kimmel Live this week to discuss the comedy movie and its long-overdue sequel, the stars were asked how comic Louie Anderson got his role as Maruice in the 1988 hit.

"How did Louie come to be a part of that film and your world there?" asked Kimmel.

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Explaining that the decision was led by Paramount Pictures, Hall responded: "I love Louie, but I think we were forced to put Louie in it... We were forced to put in a white person."

Murphy then added: "Paramount was like, because the whole cast was Black and this was back in the 80s, so it was like, 'We have to have a white person in the movie'. I was like, 'What?'

Louie Anderson with Eddie Murphy. Credit: Paramount Pictures
Louie Anderson with Eddie Murphy. Credit: Paramount Pictures

"So we thought who is the funniest white guy around? We knew Louie, we knew he was cool, so that's how Louie got in the movie."

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In addition to being forced into casting a white actor in the film, Hall went on to explain that the studio didn't give them the chance to pick at will.

He said: "It was official, I had a list. They gave me a list with three white guys. And they said, 'Who would you rather work with?' I said Louie."

Last month, Anderson responded to a similar anecdote told by Murphy on NBC's Today show, posting a clip of the interview on Twitter alongside the caption: "What wait?"

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Murphy, Hall and Anderson will all be returning in the anticipated sequel, Coming 2 America, which is set to be released on Amazon Prime on 5 March 2021.

Credit: Amazon Prime
Credit: Amazon Prime

The story of the original film - released 33 years ago - was based on characters created by Murphy.

Others making their return include characters King Jaffe Joffer (James Earl Jones), Queen Lisa (Shari Headley), Cleo McDowell (John Amos) and the motley barbershop crew.

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However, Murphy is excited for audiences to see what new cast members - such as his own daughter - bring to the film.

He said: "What I'm most excited about the audience seeing is how amazing this movie is.

"We have incredible new cast members like Wesley Snipes, Tracy Morgan, Leslie Jones, Jermaine Fowler, KiKi Layne and my own daughter, Bella Murphy, among others, who are all so funny and really brought their A-game."

The sequel sees King Akeem back in his native Zamunda, before once again journeying to Queens in New York - where his story began all those years ago.

Topics: Entertainment, Eddie Murphy, Sequel, TV, Films & Movies

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