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As US magazine likes to say: Celebrities, they're just like us. They watch movies like us. They like movies like us. And on this show, we ask them about the movies they never get tired of watching, the ones they know by heart, including this one from a Grammy Award-winning hip-hop star.


COMMON: Peace. This is Common, and I'm an artist and actor. And the movie I've seen a million times is "Coming to America," directed by John Landis, starring Eddie Murphy, Arsenio Hall and James Earl Jones.


COMMON: I first saw "Coming to America" when it was released in theaters. I went to the movies with some friends of mine, and we loved it. No matter how many times I've seen it, I still laugh.


UNIDENTIFIED MAN #1: (Singing) Just let your soul glo, baby, feel it all so silky smooth...

SMITH: I would say it's about an African prince who - the way his tradition in his life is, is that he was set up to be married by his parents, and that's just the way it usually is.


PAUL BATES: (as Oha) (Singing) She's your queen to be. A queen to...

COMMON: But he decided to go find a wife that he really would love and somebody he chose to be his wife. So he left from a country in Africa to come to America to find his queen, his lady. And he actually came to New York, ironically enough, to Queens, New York.


EDDIE MURPHY: (as Prince Akeem) Halt. Take us to Queens at once.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #2: (as Cab driver) What part of Queens you want?

MURPHY: (as Prince Akeem) Take us to the most Common part.

UNIDENTIFIED MAN #2: (as Cab driver) That's easy. If one thing Queens has got a lot of, it's common parts.

COMMON: First of all, it was just funny. And Eddie Murphy was already one of my favorite actors because he just is so funny. When I see him, it's like he had a certain natural thing about him that just was great. And you don't even, like, try to pay attention to, like, well, is his accent, does it really sound African or not? You just were in it from the beginning.


MURPHY: (as Prince Akeem) Hello.

SHARI HEADLEY: (as Lisa McDowell) Hi.

MURPHY: (as Prince Akeem) I am Akeem. I have recently been placed in charge of garbage. Do you have any that requires disposal?

COMMON: You know, you can't help but love some of the barbershop scenes when Eddie Murphy first - his character first came in.


MURPHY: (as Clarence) Joe Louis, the greatest boxer that ever lived. I'll be with you boys in a minute. He was badder than Cassius Clay, he badder than Sugar Ray, he badder than - now, who that - the new boy, Mike. Mike Tyson. Look like a bulldog. He badder than him too.

COMMON: He had a tail, and he decided to get that cut. And, you know, the barbers in there who were played by Eddie Murphy and Arsenio Hall, they were just talking, you know, about these guys from Africa, like, just kind of looking at them strange.


MURPHY: (as Clarence) Boy, what's that? Some kind of weave or something?

(as Prince Akeem) It is my natural hair. I have been growing it since birth.

(as Clarence) What kind of chemical you got in there?

(as Prince Akeem) I have put no chemicals, only juices and berries.

COMMON: Seeing somebody as great as Eddie Murphy do what he does.


MURPHY: (as Prince Akeem) When you're away through here, gone each day. To be loved, to be loved. Wow, what a feeling.

COMMON: His acting influenced me in a way that made me want to be a star.


THE SYSTEM: (Singing) I'm coming to America, America.

SMITH: That's rapper and actor Common talking about the movie that he could watch a million times, the Eddie Murphy comedy "Coming to America." Common's new film, "Luv" spelled L-U-V, is currently in theaters.


SYSTEM: (Singing) I'm coming to America. Oh, say can you see, I'm coming to America. I couldn't find...

SMITH: You're listening to ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News.

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