There comes a time in every creative’s life where they have no choice but to return to their past, either to get a payday or to protect their legacy.
They say no, don’t want to be typecast, claim they have left that character or franchise behind them. Then suddenly the hits dry up. They realise the world has changed and the franchise name opens the movie now, not their status.
Or they know the Hollywood remake machine will eventually settle its steely gaze on their most famous property and likely ruin it. So if they don’t do it, somebody else will do it without them.
Cruise did it when he had to go back to Mission: Impossible, and now Top Gun. Vin Diesel had to crawl back to XXX and The Fast And Furious franchises. Now Eddie Murphy is driven deep into his back catalogue.
First up is Coming To America 2, 31 years after the original.
Now Murphy confirms that once he finishes work on the Coming To America sequel, his next project will be Beverly Hills Cop 4.
The film has been in development, on and off, for many years. Brett Ratner was attached to direct before his career #metoo’d itself to death. A TV pilot was made starring the son of his Axel Foley character but that didn’t get picked up.
A year later, it was in development hell again with new writers and new set-up. As Murphy goes full come-back kid with Dolemite Is My Name at Netflix, the America sequel and an SNL hosting gig, it seemed natural for his greatest character to be in the mix.
In an interview with Collider he confirmed it:
“Yeah that [BHC4] is what we’re doing after ‘Coming to America 2′. We’re doing ‘Beverly Hills Cop’ and then the plan is to get back on stage and do stand-up. That’s what I’ll be doing mostly is stand-up. These movies and ‘Saturday Night Live’ it’s kind of like…I’m looking at it as a bookend. If I decided I wanted to stay on the couch forever, I ended it on a funny note.”
Originally a Sylvester Stallone thriller vehicle, the retooled and recast first Beverly Hills Cop was a critical and commercial hit.
The second flopped with critics but fans love it. It is a slice of pure 80s.
The third… well, let’s not talk about that!