Right on the heels of Warner Bros. announcing the premiere of Wonder Woman 1984 on their streaming service, HBO Max, the same day it will be released in theaters, Paramount Pictures have announced that their highly-anticipated sequel Coming 2 America will bypass theaters altogether and premiere directly on Amazon Prime on March 5, 2021.
The long-awaited sequel to the 1988 Eddie Murphy blockbuster Coming to America will reunite Murphy with co-star Arsenio Hall as King Akeem and his trusted confidante Semmi, who hail from the fictional country of Zamunda. In the original film, then-Prince Akeem and Semmi traveled to Queens to find a suitable wife for the heir. In the sequel, Akeem returns to America when he finds out he has a long-lost son. Most of the original cast will be returning, including James Earl Jones, Shari Headley, John Amos and Louie Anderson. The new film adds some high-profile new actors to its ensemble, including Wesley Snipes, Leslie Jones, Tracy Morgan, Jermaine Fowler, and KiKi Layne.
Original screenwriters Barry W. Blaustein and David Sheffield return to write the sequel, with the added help of Kenya Barris, creator and writer of black-ish. Murphy is reunited with his Dolemite Is My Name director, Craig Brewer, as well as Oscar-winning costume designer Ruth E. Carter and editor Billy Fox.
The acquisition of Coming 2 America is quite a jewel in Amazon’s crown, as they have been racing to keep up with Netflix’s deluge of marquee titles during this booming time for streaming services. With Warner Bros and HBO Max nipping at their heels, Amazon hopes Coming 2 America will duplicate the massive commercial and cultural success of the original. With streaming competition continuing to heat up as the health and future of the movie theatre industry remain in question, there is little doubt that other big-name movies will be making similar moves online, more dominos falling in the wake of COVID-19.