Last night I rewatched Coming To America. Aside from the 117 minutes of hilarity that remind me why Mark Twain Prize For American Humor Award-winning Eddie Murphy is one of the greatest comedic legends of my time, Coming To America dropped mad knowledge. Knowledge that audiences today need reinforced, and what better way than a stage adaptation? That’s right, bring the 1987 film to Broadway!
Coming To America teaches that love should never be bought. Life is worth experiencing. Letting your sooooooul glow is always the answer! And no matter how pitchy and off key, you will always have at least one fan.
Prince Akeem has almost everything. The crown to Zamunda, currency that bares his face, a mansion, and even beautiful women to ensure that his royal body is cleansed. But when faced with the presentation of his arranged wife-to-be upon his 21st birthday, Prince Akeem isn’t satisfied with doing something just because it’s tradition. He wanted a wife who loved him for who he truly was, not someone trained to be his built-in servant. And that is what he set out to find. With the power of love and his servant Semmi, Prince Akeem travels to the only logical place to find his true love — Queens, NYC.
Can’t you hear the fight between Akeem and his dad as he chooses not to marry and take his talents to NYC? Don’t you see Lisa slowly falling in love with Akeem as he serenades her with song… while quoting Nietzsche? Can you imagine the barbershop crew, performing as a barbershop quartet? Eh, that might be a stretch! But I’m sure you get the picture.
We’ve got the love story. Without a doubt, we’ve got the comedy down pat. The entrance of the Bride makes way for a great dance break. Sexual Chocolate might bring down the house once and for all! All that’s left is figuring out how Jheri curl juice stains will translate to the stage… luckily, I’m not directing.
We can take a lesson or two from the film produced decades ago. Don’t conform to traditions that you don’t agree with, follow your instincts, and look within the soul of others instead of judging them based on the superficial appearances of the external being.
Will this American classic be brought to stage?
One can only dream!