Even though there hasn’t been a new entry in the Beverly Hills Cop franchise since 1994, Hollywood’s apparent determination to resurrect every long-dormant property means that the fourth installment is still in the works, despite enduring several false starts over the years. Eddie Murphy was first announced to be returning as Axel Foley over two decades ago, and yet we’re still waiting on the motor-mouthed detective’s latest outing to even move out of the pre-production phase.
Brett Ratner was attached to the project for several years, but following some high-profile accusations of misconduct, it appears as though he’s no longer welcome in the industry at all, while a TV pilot focusing on Foley’s son was filmed in 2013 but never picked up despite Murphy dropping by for a cameo appearance.
Bad Boys For Life directors Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah first signed on to direct Beverly Hills Cop 4 in the summer of 2016, long before they proved they were more than capable of delivering a solid new outing in an action franchise that had spent a long time away from our screens, and in a recent interview, they confirmed that they were still involved, but that the script is in the very early stages.
“We’re still involved in that project, and there’s a screenwriter now on it that’s going to try to write a first draft, or a first treatment at least with the story. So we’re going to see what the first version will be, but we’re very excited and hope that we can work with another icon like Eddie Murphy. That’d be great. It was the quintessential Jerry Bruckheimer movie, a buddy cop, humorous action movie. Bad Boys is a Beverly Hills Cop kind of movie. And of course, Eddie Murphy is an idol.”
The duo have already shown that they’ve got a knack for reinventing a decades-old action franchise, with Bad Boys For Life receiving enthusiastic reviews from both fans and critics as well as earning almost $420 million at the box office, making it the highest-grossing movie of 2020 by some distance before the entire industry went into lockdown. Netflix are footing the bill for Beverly Hills Cop 4, which means that no expense will be spared, so let’s just hope that the long-awaited sequel can justify its existence after nearly 30 years stuck in development hell.