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    Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's Interview With Oprah Winfrey Sparks Bidding War in U.K.

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    The interview between Oprah Winfrey and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex has reportedly sparked a bidding war among U.K. major networks ahead of March 7 airing on CBS.

    Feb 26, 2021
    AceShowbiz – ITV are expected to air Oprah Winfrey’s interview with the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
    The 67-year-old broadcast legend has landed the couple’s first major chat since they stepped away from the British royal family and there has been a bidding war in Prince Harry’s native U.K. to acquire the rights for the CBS primetime special, which will air in the U.S. on 7 March (21).
    According to Variety, Amazon and Netflix were never in the running, nor were the BBC, leaving ITV to battle it out with Sky.
    And it’s believed the paid-for broadcaster have now dropped out of the bidding war, leaving the terrestrial network as the frontrunners to screen the tell-all interview.

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    It is believed Viacom CBS Global Distribution Group, who will sell the programme overseas, would favour a free-to-air broadcaster to boost its platform, but Harry and Meghan are likely to have a final say in where it airs.
    The royal couple previously gave an interview to ITV’s Tom Bradby in the “Harry & Meghan: An African Journey” documentary in 2019 while the network also screen the Royal Variety Performance, an annual entertainment show attended by senior royals.
    The interview is expected to initially focus on the former actress – who is pregnant with her second child, a sibling for 21-month-old Archie – and her life, before her husband joins in with the conversation to talk about their future together.
    A statement from CBS confirming the news of the interview read, “Winfrey will speak with Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex, in a wide-ranging interview, covering everything from stepping into life as a Royal, marriage, motherhood, philanthropic work to how she is handling life under intense public pressure.”
    “Later, the two are joined by Prince Harry as they speak about their move to the United States and their future hopes and dreams for their expanding family.”

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    Dave Grohl Teams Up With Mother to Develop New Streaming Show

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    The six-part series for Paramount+ is based on a book by the Foo Fighters frontman’s mom titled ‘From Cradle to Stage: Stories from the Mothers Who Rocked and Raised Rock Stars’.

    Feb 25, 2021
    AceShowbiz – Foo Fighters frontman Dave Grohl and his mum are developing a new series based on her book “From Cradle to Stage: Stories from the Mothers Who Rocked and Raised Rock Stars” for new streaming site Paramount+.
    The six-parter, directed by the rocker, will feature successful musicians’ mothers chatting about the special bond they have with their famous sons and daughters. Dave’s mum, Virginia, will appear in one episode, while the others will include the mums of Dr. Dre, Amy Winehouse and former R.E.M. star Michael Stipe.

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    “From Cradle to Stage” is just one of the exciting new shows coming to the streamer – one-time MTV staple “Yo! MTV Raps” will return with hosted segments and live performances, while VH1’s documentary series “Behind the Music” will return, as will sitcom “Frasier”, and animated hit “Rugrats”. Nickelodeon’s “Dora the Explorer” and “The Fairly Odd Parents” will also get live-action series remakes via Paramount+.
    And, as an added bonus for subscribers, Paramount+ bosses have announced both “Mission: Impossible VII” and “A Quiet Place: Part II” will be released on the streaming site just 45 days after they hit cinemas. Paramount+ will also stream the upcoming “Paw Patrol: The Movie” animated movie 45 days after it hits theatres, according to Deadline.
    “We are thrilled to re-invent some of our most storied and impactful music franchises, including Behind the Music and Yo! MTV Raps, for Paramount+,” said Bruce Gilmer, ViacomCBS President of Music, Music Talent, Programming & Events. “In addition, we will partner with some of the biggest names across the music industry to bring exclusive and unique content to the platform, such as Dave Grohl’s Cradle to Stage based on his mom’s critically-acclaimed book, and many more to come.”

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    How a TV Critic Turned to Podcasts During a Pandemic

    #masthead-section-label, #masthead-bar-one { display: none }What to WatchBest Movies on NetflixBest of Disney PlusBest of Amazon PrimeBest Netflix DocumentariesNew on NetflixAdvertisementContinue reading the main storySupported byContinue reading the main storyCritic’s NotebookHow a TV Critic Turned to Podcasts During a PandemicTV meant to be responsive to the moment seemed distant. But podcasts, with the intimate production values, felt more immediate and relevant than ever before.Credit…Hudson ChristieFeb. 25, 2021, 5:02 a.m. ETIn a year otherwise defined by loss, one area of our lives has remained untouched; abundant, even. Movie theaters closed and blockbusters were delayed. Music and theater venues shuttered. But TV marched on. The number of original scripted shows dipped slightly, but international series and older shows arriving on the streaming platforms more than filled the void of shows canceled or delayed.And yet, as the pandemic months piled up, TV’s seeming imperviousness to the halt of all other cultural activities started seeming less like a virtue and more like a vice, like denial, like a dispatch from a faker world. Much in the way I grew to prefer an old-fashioned phone call to a video chat, podcasts, not television, became my go-to medium in quarantine. With their shorter lead times and intimate production values, they felt more immediate and more relevant than ever before.As a TV critic, I had a policy to stay on top of it all, which was, “if I’m home, I’m watching something.” Then I was home for a year, and that policy, like everything else, changed.Also, I was alone. Alone as I have ever been. I went weeks without making eye contact with anyone. Zero hugs between March 11 and July 4. And all my shows just kept making it worse — everyone was always touching, those lucky bastards. A crowd scene would make my heart race, a character’s cough made me feel as if my skin was shrinking.Even TV meant to be responsive to the moment felt distant and curdled. Late-night hosts did their monologues from home, but the format and rhythms of the material stayed the same, and their jokes hung in empty air, sentences with no punctuation. Scripted shows about the pandemic, like “Love In the Time of Corona,” were brittle at best, and even when dramas like “Grey’s Anatomy” addressed the disease directly, mass death was less dramatic than a surprise cameo. Goofy shows, like “Floor Is Lava,” designed to be an escape, instead felt degrading. People are dying! Society has collapsed! I don’t want to watch dumdums fall down.I’ve spent years happily watching 70 hours of television a week, even listening to shows in the shower. But suddenly TV was no longer cutting it. I could no longer focus, and now I’m not even sure I remember what focusing is.At least with podcasts, you’re supposed to half-do something else, even if that something else had previously been “ride the subway,” and now it is “do the dishes for the 9,000th time.”You’re also supposed to listen to podcasts alone, but maybe I wasn’t quite all by myself, because I was listening to other people commiserate about kitchen woes on the podcast “Home Cooking.” This pandemic-oriented food and cooking advice show from Hrishikesh Hirway and Samin Nosrat was easily the podcast highlight of the year, bright but not phony, filled with suggestions and compassion and jokes.There were plenty of good TV shows that came out this past year, and even a few great ones, beautiful and surprising and fascinating — “I May Destroy You,” “Ted Lasso,” “Teenage Bounty Hunters,” “How To With John Wilson.” But oftentimes I wanted more direct reflections of the world around me, the kind of contact that was, that is, impossible when you’re effectively housebound. I wanted something more like validation, where everyone was miserable too.I listened to Esther Perel counsel couples in various lockdowns on “Where Should We Begin.” When self-recrimination spirals took over for generalized malaise, I listened to “Dead Eyes,” a podcast where the actor and comedian Connor Ratliff investigates in tremendous detail the time he was fired from “Band of Brothers” — a real making-lemonade-from-deep-emotional-wound lemons.I never miss an episode of “Stop Podcasting Yourself,” a genial Canadian comedy chitchat podcast hosted by Dave Shumka and Graham Clark whose overheard (and “overseen”) segment is now even more of a treasure to me, given how little in-person overhearing we do these days. This is the longest I’ve gone in my life without singing in a group, and an entire wing of my spirit has atrophied, so I listen to the pop music theory show “Strong Songs.”Turns out the prudes are right, and too much screen time will fry you from the inside. Characters appeared in my dreams, or I’d catch myself thinking, “who was I just talking to about this?” when the answer was “that conversation happened on a TV show.” But then quarantine hardened me I guess, and now it feels as if everything is behind glass, and TV shows barely register unless I’m concentrating extra hard on them for work. To keep it together this year, though, required a state of emotional hibernation alongside the physical one, and podcasts are just small enough to get into my small little loser bear cave. There’s less emotional buy-in than with a scripted drama, but they possess a legitimacy and honesty largely absent in reality and unscripted television.In the coming months, when, please, oh please, aspects of our old lives re-emerge, and we all slither out of the anti-chrysalis that turned us back into caterpillars, maybe I will go to a ballgame, or the theater, or to the movies, or, oh God, even a party. And on my way there, I will be listening to a podcast.AdvertisementContinue reading the main story More

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    'RHONJ': Gia Giudice Advises Mom Teresa to Apologize to Jackie Over 'Sh***y' Cheating Rumors

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    Prior to this, Gia reacted to her being inserted in the feud between Teresa and Jackie Goldschneider, who got into a fight in the explosive season 11 premiere of ‘The Real Housewives of New Jersey’.

    Feb 25, 2021
    AceShowbiz – Teresa Giudice and Jackie Goldschneider’s beef has involved the former’s daughter Gia Giudice, but the latter appears to have a bigger heart when it comes to this matter. In a new episode of “The Real Housewives of New Jersey” which aired on Wednesday, February 24, the ladies headed to Lake George but Jackie skipped the outing due to the drama.
    During the cast’s trip Teresa told the other Housewives why she was so upset with Jackie, adding that Gia told her to apologize to Jackie. Teresa couldn’t understand why her daughter suggested that considering the fact that Jackie used an analogy about Gia doing coke to get her point across during their argument.
    In flashback footage, Gia told her mom, “You’re upset because she said something about me. She’s upset because you said something about her marriage. Not for nothing.” Gia referred to Teresa going around saying that Jackie’s husband was cheating on her.

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    “If you went about it in a sh***y way that upset her, then you should apologize because I’m sure you weren’t happy when cheating rumors were going on about you and dad. If you upset her, say sorry,” Gia added.
    Prior to this, Gia reacted to her being inserted in the feud between Teresa and Jackie, who got into a fight in the explosive season 11 premiere of “The Real Housewives of New Jersey”. “Gia is a wonderful, smart, strong and beautiful human being and what was done to her tonight was wrong on so many levels,” Appian Entertainment’s Karianne Fischbach, her mom’s business manager, wrote on Wednesday, February 17.
    “For a grown a** ‘I’m so so smart I’m lawyer’ woman to bring Gia’s name into an argument & place an accusation with such a weighted consequence is inconceivable. I cannot fathom what would [possess] someone to create a false narrative that could have severe consequences for the innocent party involved, a 19-year-old at the time who was in no way involved in anything. what the cast members choose to do to each other is the nature of the reality TV beast, this was to [SIC] far,” the post continued to read.
    Concluding the post, Karianne wrote, “I hope apologies are made & I hope family sticks together on this one. I’d have a hard time support friend who did that to my niece, #justsayin.”

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    'Halo' TV Series Heading to Paramount+ From Showtime

    Showtime

    Produced by Showtime in partnership with 343 Industries and Amblin Television, the upcoming TV series, which is based on megahit Xbox game franchise, eyes a premiere date sometime in the first quarter of 2022.

    Feb 25, 2021
    AceShowbiz – “Halo” TV series has found a new home. It has been revealed that the long-anticipated series, which is based on the megahit Xbox game franchise, is switching from Showtime to Paramount+ as it eyes a premiere date sometime in the first quarter of 2022. Deadline is the first to report.
    Produced by Showtime in partnership with 343 Industries and Amblin Television, the upcoming TV series will be set in the universe that first came to be in 2001, bringing an epic 26th century conflict between humanity and an alien threat known as the Covenant. Starring Pablo Schreiber, the TV adaptation will deeply explore personal stories with action, adventure and a richly imagined vision of the future.
    “We were on the hunt for signature shows beyond the ‘Star Trek’ franchise on CBS All Access and were thinking, what could be a defining series for Paramount+,” David Nevins, Chief Creative Officer and Chairman for CBS, and CEO of Showtime Networks said. ” ‘Halo’ always fit the bill but seeing it, we felt it would work.”

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    Nevins added, “It delivers the visceral excitement of playing the game, along with a much deeper emotional experience around the Spartans, human beings who got their humanity chemically and genetically altered. The story is about reclaiming what makes them human, and therefore it’s a very powerful story.”
    Executive producing the show for Amblin Television are Steven Spielberg, Darryl Frank and Justin Falvey. They are joined by Steven Kane, director Otto Bathurst and Toby Leslie for One Big Picture with Kyle Killen and Scott Pennington producing for Chapter Eleven. As for Kiki Wolfkill, Frank O’Connor and Bonnie Ross, they serve as executive producers for 343 Industries.
    Previous reports claimed that “Halo” filmed 55%-60% of its first season before COVID-19 pandemic forced the production team to shut down the filming last March. As if the year-long delay wasn’t bad enough, the first season will have its episode count shortened by one so fans will only have 9 episodes.
    It was based on a game that was first announced for Mac. Its original developer Bungie was then acquired by Microsoft in 2000 prior to the launch of the original Xbox console that became a huge hit, grossing more than $5 billion in total.

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    Late Night Laughs Off Mike Pence’s Renewed Loyalty to Trump

    #masthead-section-label, #masthead-bar-one { display: none }What to WatchBest Movies on NetflixBest of Disney PlusBest of Amazon PrimeBest Netflix DocumentariesNew on NetflixAdvertisementContinue reading the main storySupported byContinue reading the main storyBest of Late NightLate Night Laughs Off Mike Pence’s Renewed Loyalty to Trump“I don’t know where the line is between forgiving and being a doormat, but Mike Pence crossed it a long time ago,” Trevor Noah said.“Staying loyal after he sent a mob to kill you?” marveled Trevor Noah. “Man, that shows how committed Mike Pence is to his principles: he won’t even abort a friendship.”Credit…Comedy CentralFeb. 25, 2021, 1:41 a.m. ETWelcome to Best of Late Night, a rundown of the previous night’s highlights that lets you sleep — and lets us get paid to watch comedy. We’re all stuck at home at the moment, so here are the 50 best movies on Netflix right now.That’s a Good Boy“Obedience school seems to be working well for Mike Pence, who has apparently patched things up with his former owner, Donald Trump,” Jimmy Kimmel said on Wednesday night, after Mike Pence was reported to have told a group of conservative lawmakers that he and Donald Trump still had a “close personal friendship.”“Staying loyal after he sent a mob to kill you? Man, that shows how committed Mike Pence is to his principles: he won’t even abort a friendship,” Trevor Noah said.“I believe Mike Pence has spent the last month doing a little something called ‘weighing his options’ and found that it would be better to be friends with Donald Trump.” — JIMMY KIMMEL“I guess at this point, there’s nothing Trump can do to Pence that would make Pence turn on him. They basically have the same relationship that we have with our Alexa: ‘Ugh, Alexa, I hate you. I wish you would die!’ [imitating Alexa] ‘I’m sorry you feel that way. Is there anything I can help you with?’” — TREVOR NOAH“And I don’t know where the line is between forgiving and being a doormat, but Mike Pence crossed it a long time ago. I mean, yeah, the Bible says to turn the other cheek, but at the same time, one of the Ten Commandments is ‘Thou shall not be a [expletive].’” — TREVOR NOAH“You know what would be fun? If I were Donald Trump, I’d announce that I need a kidney, and I’d make all of these guys — Lindsey Graham, Rudy, Mike Pence — I’d make them all give me one kidney to choose which one I like best.” — JIMMY KIMMELThe Punchiest Punchlines (Keep on Truckin’ Edition)“There’s exciting news in the world of mail delivery. Yeah, brace yourself. The U.S. Postal Service just unveiled their new fleet of delivery trucks, and the future is adorable.” — STEPHEN COLBERT“They asked the designers to come up with something that looks unremarkable and yet vaguely unsettling. And I think they succeeded.” — JIMMY KIMMEL“They’ve already spent $482 million on testing and designing it. Wasn’t the post office bankrupt like four months ago? Now they’re buying new cars? It’s like a bad brother-in-law or something.” — JIMMY KIMMEL“That thing’s about to be the first mail truck to go on the TV show ‘Botched.’” — JIMMY FALLON“That thing’s just a couple eyeballs away from a Pixar movie. You really get the feeling that engine is going to be going ‘pucket-a, pucket-a, pucket-a, pucket-a.’” — STEPHEN COLBERT“But of course there’s a controversy. Many of the new trucks will be electric, but not all of them, and ‘the precise mix has already elicited criticism from environmentalists.’ I understand their concern — I mean, you want the greenest vehicle possible when you’re delivering thousands of pounds of Amazon Rainforest that are now Amazon boxes.” — STEPHEN COLBERTThe Bits Worth Watching“Jimmy Kimmel Live” tried to find someone — anyone — at the Farmers Market in Los Angeles who could properly identify Kamala Harris’s husband.What We’re Excited About on Thursday NightThe actress Regina King, a Golden Globe nominee, will chat with Stephen Colbert on Thursday’s “Late Night.”Also, Check This OutEddie Murphy, left, at home in the Hollywood Hills and Arsenio Hall in Los Angeles. “There’s never been a period where we haven’t been friends,” Murphy said.Credit…Photographs by Brad Ogbonna for The New York TimesThe longtime friends and co-stars Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall talk about their careers and the new sequel to “Coming to America.”AdvertisementContinue reading the main story More

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    'Loki' and 'Star Wars: The Bad Batch' Get Premiere Dates on Disney+

    Marvel Studios/Disney+

    In addition to the two series, the streaming service sets premiere dates for season 2 of ‘High School Musical: The Musical: The Series’ and ‘The Mysterious Benedict Society’ among others.

    Feb 25, 2021
    AceShowbiz – Disney+ has finally unveiled its full lineup of programming during TCA that took place on Wednesday, February 24. During the event, the streaming platform announced the premiere dates for some of its highly-anticipated series including “Loki” and “Star Wars: The Bad Batch”, much to fans’ excitement.
    The streaming service announced that Marvel Studios’ “Loki” is set to arrive on June 11. As for “Star Wars: The Bad Batch”, it will first greet fans on May 4. The premiere date is most likely intentional as the date is dubbed Star Wars Day because of “May the Fourth Be With You” that derived from franchise’s famous line that read, “May the force be with you.”
    Tom Hiddleston will reprise his role as the trickster god, who seemingly is somehow still alive, on the series. On the new series, fans will see the God of Mischief stepping out of brother Thor’s (played by Chris Hemsworth in Marvel movies) shadow. The show is set after the events of “Avengers: Endgame”.

      See also…

    Joining Tom on “Loki” are Owen Wilson, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Sophia Di Martino, Wunmi Mosaku and Richard E. Grant. Kate Herron directed the series with Michael Waldron serving as the head writer.
    As for “Star Wars: The Bad Batch”, the animated series chronicles the elite and experimental clones of the Bad Batch, which was first introduced on “Star Wars: The Clone Wars”. Bad Batch is a unique squad of clones who each possesses a singular exceptional skill that makes them extraordinarily effective soldiers and a formidable crew. The series follows them in their journey of finding their way in a rapidly changing galaxy in the immediate aftermath of the Clone War.
    In addition to the two series, Disney+ set premiere dates for season 2 of High School Musical: The Musical: The Series” (Friday, May 14), “The Mysterious Benedict Society” (Friday, June 25) and “Turner & Hooch” (Friday, July 16) among others.

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    Clown Princes: Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall on ‘Coming 2 America’

    #masthead-section-label, #masthead-bar-one { display: none }What to WatchBest Movies on NetflixBest of Disney PlusBest of Amazon PrimeBest Netflix DocumentariesNew on NetflixAdvertisementContinue reading the main storySupported byContinue reading the main storyClown Princes: Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall on ‘Coming 2 America’The comic stars and longtime friends talk about their history together and their many, many roles in the original film and the new sequel.Eddie Murphy, left, at home in the Hollywood Hills and Arsenio Hall in Los Angeles. “There’s never been a period where we haven’t been friends,” Murphy said.Credit…Photographs by Brad Ogbonna for The New York TimesFeb. 24, 2021, 5:00 a.m. ETThere was a time when Eddie Murphy ruled the multiplex like a king — or at least a prince.In the 1980s, he capped off a series of comedy blockbusters (“48 Hrs.,” “Trading Places,” “Beverly Hills Cop”) and stand-up sets (“Raw”) with “Coming to America.” That 1988 film cast Murphy as Prince Akeem, the wealthy potentate of the fictional African nation of Zamunda, who travels incognito to New York with his faithful attendant, Semmi (Arsenio Hall), in search of a woman who will love him for himself.“Coming to America,” directed by John Landis, was propelled by his chemistry with Hall and their aptitude for playing countless other characters, including an unctuous reverend (Hall), a mediocre soul singer (Murphy) and the squabbling denizens of a local barber shop (Murphy, Hall and Murphy).Murphy has had many career highs and lows since, though he has lately been on an upswing that includes his hit 2019 biopic, “Dolemite Is My Name.” And now he’s returning to Zamunda in a long-awaited sequel, “Coming 2 America,” which Amazon will release on March 5.The follow-up, directed by Craig Brewer, finds an older Akeem reckoning with a grown daughter (KiKi Layne) who wants her own opportunity to rule the kingdom. He rushes back to New York with Semmi after learning that he fathered a son (Jermaine Fowler) there on his original visit. Murphy and Hall reprise several of their supporting characters, joined by “Coming to America” alumni James Earl Jones, Shari Headley and John Amos, as well as franchise newcomers like Wesley Snipes, Tracy Morgan and Leslie Jones.Hall and Murphy in “Coming 2 America.” Initially there were no plans for a follow-up. When Ryan Coogler proposed one, Murphy rejected it, but “that made me start thinking, maybe we should do a sequel.”Credit…Amazon StudiosThe making of “Coming to America” and its sequel is a story that spans the real-life friendship of Murphy and Hall, from their first encounter as stand-up comics to the present day. Murphy and Hall got together recently for a video interview to talk about the creation of “Coming 2 America” and their camaraderie, and to needle each other as only good friends can.These are edited excerpts from that conversation.How did you first meet?EDDIE MURPHY When we started doing comedy, there may have been, like, 10 Black comics in all of the country, so everybody knew each other. Comics are very cliquish, so you get in a clique with the people you think are funny. Of the 10 Black comics, there were four or five that I never became friends with. [Laughter] When I came out here [to Los Angeles], I met Arsenio through Keenen [Ivory Wayans].ARSENIO HALL We’re standing in front of the Improv, Keenen introduces me, I shake Eddie’s hand and we talk for a while and then coming down the street is Damon Wayans. But I had never met him. Keenen introduces us to Damon and he’s doing that character that Eddie let him do eventually in “Beverly Hills Cop,” the hotel guy. It was so convincing, I didn’t laugh because I didn’t know whether it was real. But that’s how he got the role in “Cop” 1.Eddie, what got you interested in the idea of seeing America and New York through the eyes of this African prince, Akeem?MURPHY This was at the height of when I first got in the business. I was on tour and had just broke up with a girlfriend, and a conversation started on the tour bus about wanting to meet a girl that didn’t know I was this dude and just liked me for me.The two in the original hit comedy, from 1988.Credit…Paramount PicturesArsenio, at that point I think your only movie credit was a comedy sketch in “Amazon Women on the Moon.” How did you get involved in the original film?HALL It’s funny, I was not a movie star, I was a stand-up comic —MURPHY Oh, no, no — he also did an episode of [the revived] “Love, American Style.” He’s with a “Soul Train” dancer named Damita Jo Freeman and they play a couple. I’ve looked all over. I looked on YouTube, but I can’t find it. [The segment can be found here.] We were friends, and I always like to be with some other comedian, to make it as funny as it can be. There’s me and Richard [Pryor in “Harlem Nights”], there’s me and Arsenio, me and Martin [Lawrence in “Life”]. I’m not going to be shouldering this [expletive] by myself.HALL But it’s funny you mention “Amazon Women” — Eddie and I are riding through Manhattan in a new white Corvette he had bought and Eddie says we’ve got to find somebody to direct this movie. And I remember saying, well, I’m not going to be much help, because I’ve only done one movie and it was with John Landis, called “Amazon Women on the Moon.” And I saw something go off.MURPHY You know what’s funny? John Landis says to me, “You know who’s really funny? Arsenio Brown.” I was like, “Arsenio Brown? Arsenio Hall.” “Oh, yes, Arsenio Hall.” To this day, he’ll still call himself Brown.HALL I think Reverend Brown came from that joke.MURPHY Arsenio Brown! It actually has a ring to it. Arsenio Hall sounds kind of stagy, like he made it up. Arsenio Brown sounds like a real person.Whose idea was it to have you play multiple characters in the movie?MURPHY The original idea didn’t have multiple characters. Once John Landis got involved, he knew I was able to do the Yiddish accent, so he was like, that would be hysterical. He had worked with [the special makeup-effects designer] Rick Baker before, so he was like, Rick could make you look like an old Jewish man — that would be hysterical. And that’s how that stuff started.Your careers went in very different directions after “Coming to America.” Did that make it difficult to remain in each other’s lives?MURPHY There’s never been a period where we haven’t been friends.HALL We can share different experiences. Part of it is being comfortable with who you are and knowing who you are. I’m a stand-up comic and a guy who does TV. Eddie is a movie star. But we share with each other because the bottom line is we’re both comfortable in our own skin.“If I’m thinking about my legacy — and I rarely do — my career never even comes into it,” Murphy said. “My legacy is my children.”Credit…Brad Ogbonna for The New York TimesWhat’s something that’s different about the two of you?HALL I’m here ’cause I’m broke — he’s here ’cause he’s good. [Laughter]MURPHY I don’t see myself as a movie star or a comedian or any of those things. I see myself as an artist. And I feel like there’s a bunch of different ways I can express myself.HALL You can pop by Eddie’s, and he’ll play a song for you. And you can’t even believe, wait, that’s you on guitar? That’s you singing? You wrote and produced this track? And that’s what he does for fun. For him it’s like crocheting a hat.MURPHY I have so many tracks and collaborations with people — Michael [Jackson], El DeBarge — all these people I’ve been in the studio with over the years and never finished it or never released it.HALL He does so many things. He does them as well as anybody else. He’s a beast. It’s hard to deal with.What took you so long to make a sequel to “Coming to America”?MURPHY We never thought about doing a sequel. The way the story ended was kind of like, “And they lived happily ever after.” Then all this time passed and the movie became this cult thing. Catchphrases from the movie start working their way into the culture. Stores turning themselves into McDowell’s. I see Beyoncé and Jay-Z dressed up like the Zamunda characters for Halloween.Then Ryan Coogler, before he directed “Black Panther,” I meet with him and he says, I want to do a “Coming to America” sequel. He had an idea for Michael B. Jordan to play my son and he would be looking for a wife. I was like, then the movie would be about the son, it’s not our characters, we already did that. It didn’t come together.But all that made me start thinking, maybe we should do a sequel. I saw the “Terminator” movie where they made Arnold Schwarzenegger young — his face looked like Arnold, but young — and that’s where I got it. [Snaps fingers] If we use that to make us young and create a new scene in the club [from the original “Coming to America”] where we’re out looking for the girls, so it’s part of that night. I go home with a girl and I’m high — that was the piece we needed to start the flow.HALL I never thought about it because we had always said we’re going to leave “Coming to America” where it is. But I text him sometimes when I do my coffee run in the morning, and he says, What are you doing? I think you should read this script now. And I read half of it sitting in his yard. It was so exciting and so good.“I’m a stand-up comic and a guy who does TV,” Hall said. “Eddie is a movie star. But we share with each other because the bottom line is we’re both comfortable in our own skin.Credit…Brad Ogbonna for The New York TimesDid the lawsuit won by Art Buchwald, who said “Coming to America” was based on a treatment he wrote, affect your ability to make a sequel?MURPHY Oh, not at all. I’m not even sure how all that stuff was resolved, what the exact wording was. But at the end of the day, I think it’s all good. In the credits, they give a thank you to the Art Buchwald estate.In both “Coming to America” films, we see Zamunda as this nation where Black people are able to fulfill their potential and achieve greatness without white people interfering or oppressing them. Was that a point you were trying to make explicitly?MURPHY We never say that. We never show you the history of the country. We just are. We’re like Wakanda.HALL And how perfect to do “Coming to America” 2 in Atlanta, where it’s very hot and the palace actually is owned by Rick Ross.MURPHY Yeah, his house is so big, we literally were able to dress it and make it look like a palace. That stuff you see where I’m walking on the African plain and there’s antelopes running — that’s Rick Ross’s backyard. He has like 300 acres or something.HALL And a lake! Do you have a lake? You’ve got to start rapping. Let me hear you say [Rick Ross voice], “Hunh.”Were there any character bits that were written for the sequel but didn’t make the cut?MURPHY There was a draft where the barbers had on MAGA hats and it turned out that they were Republicans. But it wasn’t because they were for Trump — they were Herman Cain supporters. We thought it was funny but it kind of dates the movie if we do this. We had these two old goat herders that had a dispute over a goat, and it was very funny but it culminated in, one of these guys [had sex with] this goat. It was like, uhhhh, we’ve got James Earl Jones in this movie — let’s keep it all classy. [Laughter] In the early drafts, Tracy Morgan was my son.HALL I’m like, I love Tracy and he’s the funniest guy in the world. But yo, Ed, y’all about the same age. [Murphy voice] “We’ll work it out, man, we’ll figure it out. He’s funny.”Murphy and Hall have been friends since early in their careers. “Comics are very cliquish, so you get in a clique with the people you think are funny,” Murphy said.Credit…The LIFE Picture Collection, via Getty ImagesDid the barbershop guys remain eternally the same age?MURPHY You look at the makeup — we aged them up nice and good. They’re supposed to be in their late 80s, early 90s now. Looking at the first one, I was amazed at how young we looked — the skin is tight, Saul [the barbershop patron], there are no age spots on his face, his face is all even-toned.What do you do to pass the time when you’re in the makeup chair?HALL It’s funny because we go to different places. We can’t be in the same trailer. He watches certain things and I watch certain other things. We tried it, the first day, together, and there were times when I didn’t want to see Prince videos.MURPHY Oh, you didn’t want to see MonoNeon?HALL Oh God!MURPHY MonoNeon — what’s the best way to describe him?HALL Something that makes Arsenio need his own trailer.MURPHY MonoNeon is a musician who plays bass and he’s unbelievable. He’s Jimi Hendrix and Basquiat and Skittles, all combined. I could watch it for hours and hours and hours and hours. [Hall begins to grimace and Murphy does Hall’s voice] “You’re watching MonoNeon again?!”HALL I’m a news junkie and I’ll watch the left, the right and the center, all day long.MURPHY I’m the exact opposite. Before the pandemic, I never, never watched the news. I never know what’s going on. I’ll be like, “What happened?” “Trump is the president!” I totally don’t follow any of that stuff.Murphy and Hall reprise their many, many characters in the sequel.Credit…Amazon StudiosIn the new movie, we see Akeem adjusting to changing times and reckoning with the desires of his grown children. Eddie, is this at all a metaphor for your life? Are you starting to think of the legacy you’ll someday leave behind?MURPHY If I’m thinking about my legacy — and I rarely do — my career never even comes into it. My legacy is my children. When I’m dead, and they’re doing my eulogy, ain’t nobody going to be standing over the coffin talking about, [preacher voice] “And then, he did ‘48 Hrs.,’ which was a wonderful film. Burst on the scene with Nick Nolte and shook up the world. Moved onto ‘Trading Places’ and then the great ‘Beverly Hills Cop.’ And then the classic ‘Raw’ — let’s show a clip.” [laughter]HALL [indicating the array of trophies that Murphy is seated in front of] I know you think those awards behind him are for show business, but those are Daddy of the Year Awards.MURPHY One for each child.Do you have any plans for another collaboration?HALL I think it’s back to the comedy clubs for me. I’ll be at the Milk Through Your Nose in Canada next Friday.MURPHY The plan was for all of us to be doing standup. When I got up off the couch and did this little patch of work, it was, let’s do “Dolemite.” Let’s do “Saturday Night Live.” Let’s do “Coming 2 America.” Because I want to go do standup again, but I don’t want to just pop up out there when people hadn’t seen me be really funny in a while. I didn’t want to do standup after the last movie you’ve seen me do is “Meet Dave.” [Laughter] Let me remind them that I’m funny. And then the pandemic hit and we had to pull everything back. But when the pandemic is over and it’s safe to be around people, I’m going to go do standup again. There’s so many comics in “Coming 2 America.” I’d love to do a tour with all the comedians, me, Arsenio, Leslie Jones, Tracy Morgan, Trevor Noah, Jermaine Fowler, Louie Anderson, Michael Blackson.Is it perilous for the two of you to hang out in public? If people see you together, do they just start quoting “Coming to America”?MURPHY We haven’t been out in a year because the bottom fell out of the world. But when the world gets back to normal, I don’t have a problem going anywhere. When I was young I used to have bodyguards. Then one day it was like, hey, wait a second — I don’t need all these bodyguards! [Laughs] And I haven’t had them since. I don’t restrict my movements or not go to places. When you go somewhere, you just say, “What’s up?,” take a picture and keep it rolling.HALL I can’t wait for those times to come back. The only problem with Starbucks is, Eddie’s a big tipper. When I go back alone, there’s always this look, like [mimes someone looking behind him to see if Murphy is also coming]. I leave $5. Eddie will leave them a Rolls-Royce tire.Bella Murphy contributed additional camera operating for the photographs of Eddie Murphy.AdvertisementContinue reading the main story More