2019 was a huge year for Eddie Murphy between his highly acclaimed performance in Netflix's Dolemite Is My Name and winning an Emmy for his return to the Saturday Night Live stage. Murphy seemed like he was on the cusp of a renaissance after years away from the spotlight. "I didn’t want to just pop back up,” he told the New York Times. “I wanted a funny movie to remind them that they liked me. This movie turned out so strong that I figured this is a great way to come back."
Unfortunately, that momentum was derailed by the global coronavirus pandemic. 2020 brought things to a standstill for most people, including Murphy. While promoting his new film Coming 2 America, the comedian stopped by Kevin Hart's podcast Comedy Gold Minds to talk about the sequel and his career in general. During the wide-ranging chat, Murphy admitted that he had plans to return to stand-up comedy.
"My plan was to do Dolemite, Saturday Night Live, Coming 2 America, and then do stand up," he admitted. "And then the pandemic hit, and it shut the whole s--- down. Then I was going — the whole time last year I would have been out working on my act trying to get my s--- right, and then the whole thing shut down. Hey, when the pandemic is over and it’s safe for everybody to go out and do it, then the plan is to do it."
It will be interesting to see how Murphy's stand-up has evolved over the years. He told the New York Times in 2019 that he cringes when he revisits some of his material in his iconic stand-up special Raw, admitting that he now realizes that his homophobic material in the set was "ignorant."
"I was a young guy processing a broken heart, you know, kind of an a------," Murphy said. Now that he's a father of eight, his perspectives on life and the world have changed significantly. "I now have a whole lifetime of experiences to draw upon," Murphy explained. "There was a time when I was at the center of everything, what I was doing, and how funny I was and how popular… I’m not at the center. Now my kids are and everything revolves around them."