Coming to America 2 may not be the first movie you think of when the subject of future blockbusters comes up, but it’s the sequel to a comedy classic that people have literally been waiting decades for. Theater owners, especially in this depleted landscape, were certainly looking forward to it, as well. But they’ve just been dealt another cruel blow, as Amazon has swooped in to secure the Eddie Murphy film for a whopping sum.
Variety reports that Amazon Studios is in final talks with Paramount to secure the rights for Coming to America 2, in a deal that could be worth $125M and include marketing tie-ins with Crown Royal and McDonald’s. No, not McDowell’s. The film would then hit Amazon Prime video on December 18th, rather than in theaters on Christmas Day as it was previously.
Coming to America 2 is a sequel to the 1988 film, with Murphy returning to the role of now-King Akeem, who learns he has a son in the U.S. that he never knew about, and must journey there to groom him to be the crown prince.
Pretty much everybody from the first movie returns, including Arsenio Hall, James Earl Jones, Shari Headley, and James Earl Jones. Jermaine Fowler plays Akeem’s son, with Kiki Layne as his first daughter, and Leslie Jones as the boy’s mother. Tracy Morgan, Wesley Snipes, and Rick Ross are also in the cast.
So yeah, theater owners are taking it on the chin. There are now only a handful of big money-earning movies left in 2020, and they are not guaranteed to stay where they are.