‘Coming 2 America’ star Nomzamo Mbatha recalls how Eddie Murphy called her out for her “real” African accent

Coming 2 America star Nomzamo Mbatha knows a thing or two about African culture considering she was born just north of Durban, South Africa.

While being raised in the motherland obviously gave the actress an advantage when starring in the Afrocentric film, Mbatha tells ABC Audio that there was one thing she wasn’t going to give advice on when it came to her culture.

“I stayed away from advising about the accent. I will say that,” she laughs. “That’s my disclaimer.”

“But I remember on set when we were running lines — I think it was my second day on set and was Eddie’s first day,” Mbatha recalls. “And then I said my line. It was the first time that I spoke. And he was like, ‘Wait a minute, she has a real accent.’ So, everybody started laughing at that.”

Even though the actress shied away from correcting the questionable African accents from the cast, Mbatha says she was very deliberate when it came to her character Mirembe — a royal groomer and the love interest of Jermaine Fowler‘s Lavelle.

“Coming from the continent for me, it was just important to truly embody what it means to be an African woman, especially because my character is from Zamunda,” she explains. “So all the nuances, all the the textures, and all the layers that I wanted to add I was able to do that.”

“And also to just have fun,” Mbatha continues. “To be sarcastic, be witty, and also add so much history in us as friends in the palace.” 

Coming 2 America, also starring Arsenio HallLeslie Jones, and Kiki Layne, is available to stream on Amazon Prime.

By Candice Williams
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