Amazon is no doubt celebrating its late-game acquisition of Coming 2 America, after the comedy sequel saw a huge opening weekend in Amazon Prime Video streams. While reviews for the Eddie Murphy film have been mixed, Coming 2 America managed to snag the top spot in streaming movies for the weekend, with a bigger opening than any other film this year.
Defining success for streaming films is a little more complicated than theatrical releases, without the clear data from the global box office, but Amazon has pointed to figures from 3rd party Screen Engine/ASI’s weekly VOD ratings.
The weekly chart shows Amazon’s Coming 2 America overtaking Paramount+’s The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run and Netflix’s To All The Boys: Always and Forever. Amazon also says the movie has seen the best opening weekend for a movie on a streaming service in all of 2021, and even since the COVID-19 pandemic first shut down cinemas last year. These numbers should be taken with a grain of salt however, as they’re based on viewer surveys rather than raw streaming data–with streamers like Netflix notoriously cagey about its viewer numbers.
Amazon’s marketing campaign for Coming 2 America has been aggressive, featuring a Superbowl ad, the relaunch of the 1988 movie on Amazon Prime, a themed TikTok dance challenge to “I’m a King” from the official soundtrack, and even widespread posters slapped on Amazon delivery trucks, vans, and one plane.
Coming 2 America is a sequel to the 1988 original, with cast members including Eddie Murphy, Arsenio Hall, James Earl Jones, Shari Headley, John Amos, and Louie Anderson returning to reprise their roles. The sequel has changed up the formula a little, most notably swapping the original’s R-rating for a more family-friendly PG-13. New cast members include Wesley Snipes, Leslie Jones, Tracy Morgan, Jermaine Fowler, and Bella Murphy.
Reactions to the film have been mixed according to Metacritic, with some bemoaning the sequel’s lack of originality, and others arguing the lush, nostalgic spectacle is exactly the kind of film we need right now. Coming 2 America is available to stream on Amazon Prime Video now.