JAMES EARL JONES
Yaphet Kotto of 'Live and Let Die,' 'Alien,' dies at 81
FILE - Actor Yaphet Kotto appears on his wedding day in Baltimore, Md. Kotto, the commanding actor of the James Bond film Live and Let Die and as Lt. Al Giardello on the 90's NBC police drama "Homicide: Life on the Street, died Monday, March 15, 2021 at age 81. Kottos wife, Tessie Sinahon, announced his death Monday in a Facebook post. (AP Photo/John Gillis, File)NEW YORK – Yaphet Kotto, the commanding actor who brought tough magnetism and stately gravitas to films including the James Bond movie “Live and Let Die” and “Alien," has died. Kotto’s wife, Tessie Sinahon, announced his death Monday in a Facebook post.
33 years later, Eddie Murphy, Arsenio Hall return to Zamunda
NEW YORK – When Eddie Murphy made the original “Coming to America,” he was, almost indisputably, the funniest man in America. “Now I take nothing for granted and appreciate everything.”Thirty-three years after “Coming to America,” Murphy and Hall have returned to Zamunda. At the barbershop, where Murphy and Hall also reprise their characters, the conversation bounces from Teslas to transgender people. Before making “Black Panther,” Murphy has said Ryan Coogler approached him about a “Coming to America” sequel. Ruth E. Carter designed the costumes of both “Black Panther” and “Coming 2 America.” Both were shot in Atlanta.
New this week: 'Coming 2 America,' Camilo and a dragon movie
(ABC/Paramount+/Amazon via AP)Here’s a collection curated by The Associated Press’ entertainment journalists of what’s arriving on TV, streaming services and music platforms this week. MOVIES— Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall are back in Queens as Prince Akeem and Semmi in “Coming 2 America,” the sequel to the 1988 film, which is now coming straight to your living room Friday on Amazon Prime Video. Set to becoming the King of Zamunda, Murphy’s character returns to the U.S. to find a son he’s never met. Ad— A more family friendly streaming option this week is the Walt Disney Co.’s computer animated “Raya and the Last Dragon,” featuring the voices of “Star Wars’” Kelly Marie Tran as Raya and Awkwafina as a dragon. The big-voiced Grammy-winning singer self-produced “Baby, I’m Hollywood!” – which is a mix of soul music, piano ballads and funk sounds.
Dave Prowse, the original Darth Vader, dies at 85
LONDON – Dave Prowse, the British weightlifter-turned-actor who was the body, though not the voice, of arch-villain Darth Vader in the original “Star Wars” trilogy, has died. Prowse donned Darth Vader's black armor and helmet for “Star Wars” (1977), “The Empire Strikes Back” (1980) and “Return of the Jedi" (1983). He was a regular at “Star Wars” fan events but was banned from official conventions by Lucas in 2010 after the pair fell out. Mark Hamill, who played Luke Skywalker in the “Star Wars” films, tweeted that Prowse was “a kind man & much more than Darth Vader.” Hamill said the actor "loved his fans as much as they loved him. “As a kid, Dave Prowse couldn’t be more famous to me; stalking along corridors as evil incarnate in the part of Darth Vader & stopping a whole generation of kiddies from being mown down in street as the Green Cross Code man,” he wrote.
'Coming 2 America' to launch on Amazon Prime in March
“Coming 2 America,” the sequel to the 1988 Eddie Murphy comedy, has landed on a date to come to audiences. The film which reunites Murphy and Arsenio Hall will debut on Amazon Prime Video on March 5, 2021, Amazon Studios said Friday. Originally a Paramount Pictures theatrical release, the studio sold the film to the streamer last month but had yet to finalize a date. “Coming to America was a cultural phenomenon that is one of the most loved and celebrated comedies of all time,” said Jennifer Salke, head of Amazon Studios, in a statement. “We know audiences around the world will fall in love with this hilarious, joyful movie that will surely become a timeless favorite.”James Earl Jones, Shari Headley and John Amos will also be reprising their roles alongside new additions like Wesley Snipes, Leslie Jones, Tracy Morgan and KiKi Layne.
Barry Jenkins to direct 'Lion King' follow-up
NEW YORK – The Walt Disney Co. will make a follow-up to the 2019 live-action “The Lion King,” with Barry Jenkins, the director of the Oscar-winning “Moonlight” and the James Baldwin adaptation “If Beale Street Could Talk,” set to direct. The new “Lion King” grossed more than $1.6 billion worldwide, so a sequel was perhaps always likely. Less expected was a “Lion King” with Jenkins directing. The film, Disney said, will explore the mythology of “The Lion King,” including Mufasa's origin story. Disney didn't announce any further plot details or casting on the new “Lion King” project, which was first reported by Deadline Hollywood.
Batter Up! Baseball, soundtrack of summer, is back - sort of
The Los Angeles Dodgers play the Los Angeles Angels at sunset during the fifth inning of a preseason baseball game, Tuesday, July 21, 2020, in Los Angeles. Rather than keeping players and club personnel sealed in a bubble environment, baseball teams will fly around the country, raising more health concerns. “Going to be 2020 coronavirus baseball,” Yankees star pitcher Gerrit Cole said. Los Angeles ace Clayton Kershaw had hoped to take part, but he was scratched from the opener because of back issues. “It’s that sound, it’s the summer sound.”___AP Baseball Writers Ronald Blum and Janie McCauley and AP Sports Writers Howard Fendrich and Joe Reedy contributed to this report.
Baseball plans game at Field of Dreams, but will they come?
Visitors play on the field at the Field of Dreams movie site, Friday, June 5, 2020, in Dyersville, Iowa. Small town Iowa, baseball is still a big thing here, he said. The Field of Dreams site is open to visitors, who at no charge can run the bases and see if they can smack a ball into cornstalks that now stand about a foot tall. For Go the Distance Baseball, the company that now owns the Field of Dream site and plans to build a complex of youth baseball and softball fields, the talk of playing a game began five years ago. We understand the best choice for Major League Baseball in 2020 comes first.___Follow Scott McFetridge on Twitter: https://twitter.com/smcfetridge