With Eddie Murphy now threatening a comeback (well, a return to halfway decent material) with this weekend’s “Tower Heist,” he made the most of his interview with Rolling Stone to drop some nuggets of info about what he plans next. “Beverly Hills Cop 4” may be dead, but he wants to bring Axel Foley to the small screen, and in the print edition of the mag transcribed by Moviehole he’s got an all black alien invasion flick he’s writing. But let’s hold up a second.
Back in the early days of “Tower Heist,” before it landed with Brett Ratner, the project was initially being groomed as a vehicle for Murphy, Chris Rock and Chris Tucker. Obviously, it turned out a bit differently, but it seems Murphy is still dreaming of all black comedy ensemble.
Noting that Tracy Morgan and Martin Lawrence were also going to be part of the original incarnation of “Tower Heist,” Murphy tells the magazine, “I have this idea called ‘Jamal and Tyrell and Omar and Brick and Michael’s Wack-Ass Weekend‘ about this group of guys who get abducted by aliens on the way to the fights. I’m writing that now.”
Besides a title that could use a couple of commas, this is interesting, though worrying too. Murphy’s last writing credit was on the universally reviled “Norbit” and his big stab at sci-fi “The Adventures Of Pluto Nash” was a disaster. But hey, if he’s got a “Coming To America” still left in him we’ll give him a shot and we’re crossing our fingers that “Tower Heist” at least brings back — however vague — memories of how great he used to be. But that will be determined by the Ratner Factor which is always a wild card. Murphy also hosts the Oscars in February, and should be there for the whole show, provided something doesn’t piss him off halfway through, forcing him to leave.