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Eddie Murphy is one of the most prominent comedians still working today. Although he’s been mostly away from the genre for the past few years, he has seen a comeback in a big way recently. Sequels to Coming to America and Beverly Hills Cop are on the way, and Murphy has received major praise for Netflix’s Dolemite Is My Name.
Along with Dolemite Is My Name taking home two trophies at last Sunday’s 25th Annual Critics Choice Awards, the 58-year-old actor was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award that night as well. CinemaBlend was in attendance to see Eddie Murphy receive his honor. Here’s the advice the former SNL cast member gave to young actors during his speech:
To make your living making people laugh is the highest blessing on Earth. I’ve played everything: a cop, a robber, a doctor, different ethnicities, animals. I’ve been a donkey. I’ve even played a spaceship once. When young actors come up to me on the street and say, ‘Do you have any advice?,’ I say, ‘Never play a spaceship.’
Eddie Murphy was welcomed to accept the award on the Santa Monica stage with a standing ovation from the crowd filled with actors, filmmakers and critics. During his speech, he revealed the oddly specific advice he said he often gives people when he inevitably is asked to lay some wisdom on young hopefuls who’d like a career in comedy just like him.
The comedian is certainly incredibly thankful for the career he’s had for the past 40 years and the diversity of roles he’s been given the chance to play. However, looking back, he probably wouldn’t play a spaceship! It’s an often forgotten role by the actor from a movie called Meet Dave.
The 2008 comedy had Eddie Murphy playing a human spaceship who is being operated by mini aliens (one of whom is also played by Murphy). When the ship falls in love with a human woman (played by Elizabeth Banks), hijinks ensue! It was one of the actor’s biggest flops ever, making just $50 million worldwide on a $60 million production budget.
Hey, they’re not always going to be winners, right? Eddie Murphy quipped in his speech ”that shit didn’t go too well” about the movie. One fun fact about Meet Dave is that Kevin Hart actually had a role in the movie before he was considered a household name.
On the other side of things, Eddie Murphy recently said he could have had a part in Who Framed Roger Rabbit, but he turned it down! Now he feels like an idiot every time he sees it. At the time, he thought the concept of animation and people together just sounded like “bullshit” to him.
But overall, Eddie Murphy has had quite a career. Iconic, even! Sometimes it’s the especially diverse roles that have made him so popular too. For example, playing a donkey in the Shrek movies was his most massive success. And his voice role as Mulan’s Mushu still has people talking.
Eddie Murphy returns to the big screen when Coming 2 America is released on December 18.