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The Real Reason Louie Anderson Was in “Coming to America”

TVOvermind
 2021-03-06

Cover picture for the articleMany folks should know the argument that casting a movie without any diversity is going to bring up, but from a certain standpoint, one can reasonably argue the point that in Coming to America there had to be a pretty big diversity of faces, and not just white and black diversity since New York is a pretty big and diverse place. In fact, the city has been that way for a long, long time now. But since the movie was about a prince from the fictional nation of Zamunda and it was his story, the general consensus between Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall was that they wanted to hire an all-black cast. The compromise was that Paramount wanted at least one white face in the movie, so it was that Louie Anderson, who was also a prominent comedian on the rise at the time, was in a way forced upon them and was cast in the movie. One upside was that Murphy and Hall actually liked Anderson since much like them he was someone that was working his way up the comedic ladder and had proven to be quite hilarious for a good chunk of his career. But the overall feeling is that they’d lost a bit of the influence they’d wanted over the movie. The argument of course from a lot of folks might be that if this was a predominantly white cast that a lot of people might say that people would go nuts over there being too much ‘whiteness’ in the movie.

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