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Trivia / Beverly Hills Cop III

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  • B-Team Sequel: This wasn't produced by Jerry Bruckheimer and Don Simpson and wasn't scored by Harold Faltermyer.
  • California Doubling: While still filmed in California, most of the theme park scenes were filmed nowhere near Beverly Hills or Los Angeles, but up north in Santa Clara, just south of San Francisco.
  • Creator Killer: While John Landis' career looked to have been getting back on-track (especially after Coming to America) in the late 80s, the troublesome and massively over-budget production of this film, along with its consequent critical and commercial failure sent his career into a death spiral, with Blues Brothers 2000 later being the finishing blow.
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  • Enforced Method Acting: When the glass door of the computer room slams shut, trapping Theresa Randle and Judge Reinhold inside it, Reinhold can clearly be seen mouthing "What the fuck?!".
  • Money, Dear Boy: Eddie Murphy said this in a 1989 interview with Rolling Stone:
    There's no reason to do it. I don't need the money and it's not gonna break any new ground. How often can you have Axel Foley talk fast and get into a place he doesn't belong? But these motherfuckers are developing scripts for it. They're in pre-production. The only reason to do a Cop III is to beat the bank, and Paramount ain't gonna write me no check as big as I want to do something like that. In fact, if I do a Cop III, you can safely say, 'Ooh, he must have got a lot of money!'
  • Old Shame:
    • Eddie Murphy has spoken negatively about the film since its first release, calling it "atrocious" and promising that if a fourth film is ever made, it would be an improvement over III.
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    • Director John Landis has claimed that Eddie did everything he could to subvert any possible humor in the film by deliberately not being funny. Murphy wanted to play Axel as less of a "wiseass" and a more serious and mature character, as he wanted to be taken seriously as an straight action star like Wesley Snipes and Denzel Washington. He was also rather depressed at the time, due to his star vehicles around the time underperforming.
    • When Murphy appeared on The Late Show with David Letterman in 2011, David read a list of some movies from Eddie's filmography. When this movie was mentioned, and the audience clapped and cheered, Eddie said, "No. No. It wasn't a very good Beverly Hills Cop movie."
  • Prop Recycling: The ride control panel in the control room is part of the fire alarm panel from The Towering Inferno.
  • Troubled Production: The film tarnished Eddie Murphy's career and was a partial Creator Killer for John Landis, and looking back, it's not hard to see why:
    • Murphy was averse to creating a third film in the series, claiming that he didn't like Cop II's over-reliance of similar gags and character motivations to that of the first in various talk show appearances. He claimed that if he were to get involved in a third film, it would be because Paramount Pictures footed a giant paycheck for him... and that's exactly what happened when they forked over $15 million for him to reprise his role.
    • Like its predecessors, the film was fraught with problems deciding on a plot or script. Many ideas were batted around, including one where Axel would journey to London to arrest a pair of criminal brothers after his colleague Jeffrey is killed trying to arrest them, and teaming up with a British detective (envisioned to be played by either Sean Connery or John Cleese) to find the culprit. Another unused script idea had Foley, Rosewood, and Taggart going to London to rescue Captain Bogomil, who was being held hostage by terrorists during a International Police Convention. However, numerous problems, such as scripting issues and the budget, caused pre-production to drag out to the point that John Ashton and Cox had to drop out, due to obligations to other pending film projects. Cox would later claim in 2012 that the script was the big reason why he refused to return for the film, and his character simply isn't mentioned or referenced in the finished film.
    • Murphy showed up on-set looking downbeat and not giving the kind of trademark energy he used to, with various reasons given as to why that was the case. Interviews with Landis and Bronson Pinchot lay the blame with Murphy being depressed over a string of underperforming films or outright flops (including The Distinguished Gentleman and Harlem Nights, causing him to act morose throughout the shoot. For his part, Murphy claims that he wanted to play Axel Foley as an older and wiser detective who didn't use as much of his trademark snark or Bavarian Fire Drill tendencies. Whatever the case may be, his performance was singled out for criticism by reviewers after the fact.
    • Paramount cut the budget from a planned $70 million to $55 million after the box-office gross for Distinguished Gentleman was tabulated. Despite that, the budget spiraled out of control, with planned start dates pushed back amid script concerns.
    • Despite earning $119.5 million at the box office, the film was seen as a disappointment and put the kibosh on Landis' directing career for several years (the failure of Blues Brothers 2000 finished it off), while Murphy was left in a box-office slump for several years until The Nutty Professor (1996) reversed his fortunes. The lackluster nature of the script and production also left a planned fourth installment in Development Hell for nearly three decades, until it was announced by Netflix that they had inked a deal with Murphy to produce the film for the network in 2020.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • Among the rejected ideas included a Robert Towne screenplay idea (one in which Axel Foley has to deal with his celebrity cop status), a scenario teaming Eddie Murphy with Sean Connery as a Scotland Yard detective, and another Axel Foley-in-London idea where his Scotland Yard counterpart would have been played by John Cleese. The last story would have involved a British gangster loosely based on the real-life Kray brothers, who was captured in Detroit and transported to London by Paul Reiser's Jeffrey, and Axel would have gone overseas after the gangster's henchmen broke him out of custody and murdered Jeffrey. This concept was scrapped because producers Don Simpson and Jerry Bruckheimer decided it was too close to the storyline of Black Rain.
    • Joe Dante, was considered to direct. He does make a cameo in the movie.
    • Joel Silver was set to take over producing duties from Don Simpson and Jerry Bruckheimer. But when he could not negotiate a large budget that resulted production delays, he quit the production and was replaced by Mace Neufeld and Robert Rehme.
    • One idea for the film came from Brandon Tartikoff who suggested a crossover film with Paul Hogan as Crocodile Dundee but the idea was rejected by Eddie Murphy.
    • Initially, the plot for this film would've concerned Foley, Rosewood, and Taggart going to London to rescue Capt. Bogomil who was being held hostage by terrorists during a International Police Convention. However, numerous problems such as scripting issues and the budget, caused pre-production to drag out the point that both John Ashton and Ronny Cox had to drop out due to obligations to other pending film projects.


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