We haven’t seen detective Axel Foley on the big screen for more than 20 years, not since 1994’s Beverly Hills Cop 3. Almost the entire time after that there have been reports that Beverly Hills Cop 4 could actually happen. And as we live and breathe, here in 2015, the project is still not dead, at least according to Brett Ratner.
Pumping the National Geographic Channel series Breakthrough, where he directed one episode, Ratner appeared at the Television Critics Association summer press tour. Slashfilm caught up with the multi-hyphenate writer-director-producer, and one of the things they talked to him about was Beverly Hills Cop 4. He confirmed that this is indeed still in the works, and when asked about where they’re at, he said:
Working on the script, working on the script. It’s a longer process. It’s not easy. A lot of pressure on that one
In addition to revealing that they are in the process of developing and rewriting the script, Ratner also confirmed that he is still attached to direct the project. Apparently it got a new breath of life recently when CBS reportedly cancelled a pilot for a potential series they were working on. They’re actually moving forward with a series for another property Ratner has been involved with, as their episodic Rush Hour is slated to hit the air in the middle of the 2015-2016 TV season.
It even sounds like franchise star Eddie Murphy is on board, or at least open to the possibility of reprising his role. And it would be hard to do it without him, after all, he is the Beverly Hills cop, a sequel would just be silly without him. It’s good that Ratner and company are focusing on getting the screenplay just right, as Murphy, who worked with the director on Tower Heist in 2011, has recently said that in order for him to agree to come back the script will have to be "incredible."
The original 1984 action comedy helped launch Eddie Murphy and his wisecracking antics to international stardom. He plays Axel Foley, a brash, reckless Detroit cop who goes from the gritty Motor City environs to the posh, upscale setting of Beverly Hills to investigate the death of a friend. As you can imagine, his streetwise ways lead to all kinds of hilarious fish out of water shenanigans and conflicts. Sequels followed in 1987 and 1994, to diminishing returns, but Axel just couldn’t resist the allure of the Southern California sun.
Though he’s willing to discuss the matter, Ratner didn’t give any indication when we might actually see Beverly Hills Cop 4. With a busy schedule that includes stints as producer on highly anticipated movies like Johnny Depp’s Black Mass and the Leonardo DiCaprio-starring The Revenant, his dance card is already rather full. If this does eventually happen, rest assured it won’t be super soon.