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The Evolution of Eddie Murphy

The Evolution of Eddie Murphy's Career Throughout the Years!

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    Eddie's career got started in 1980, when he joined the cast of NBC's "Saturday Night Live". Growing up, he knew he wanted to be a comedian, and at the age of 15, wrote and performed his own routines. Most of his routines were influenced by Richard Pryor and Bill Cosby. Murphy stayed on "SNL" until 1984.

    Photo: (YouTube)

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    Eddie got his big screen debut in 1982 with "48 Hrs." alongside Nick Nolte. He was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for New Star of the Year for his role.
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    Murphy released his first comedy album in 1982, simply titled "Eddie Murphy". It peaked at #97 on the Billboard 200 Albums Chart.
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    Murphy quickly released his second comedy album, "Comedian", in 1983. It peaked much higher than his first go-around, hitting #35 on the album charts.
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    Eddie Murphy made his first tv standup movie, "Delerious" in 1983 and it aired on HBO. It featured his most profane content- the F-word was used 230 times! It was also a huge success and led to his standup concert film, "Raw."

    Photo: Youtube

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    Widely considered his "break out role", Murphy starred in 1984's "Beverly Hills Cop". The film grossed over $300 million worldwide and earned him another Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy. The film also spawned two sequels - "Beverly Hills Cop II" in 1987, and "Beverly Hills Cop III" in 1994.

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    1983 also saw "Trading Places", with Dan Aykroyd. Eddie was once again nominated at the Golden Globe Awards - this time for Best Actor in a Musical or Comedy for his role in the film.

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    His first musical album, "How Could It Be", was released in 1985, and peaked at #26 on the album charts, his highest charting album to date.
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    His most widely known single, "Party All the Time", featuring Rick James, climbed all the way to #2 on the Billboard 100. It's his highest performing single to date on the chart, and helped fuel the album.
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    Eddie Murphy made "Eddie Murphy: Raw" in 1987 with director Robert Townsend. It featured guests Tatyana Ali, Samuel L. Jackson, Damien Wayans and was written and produced with help from with Keenan Ivory Wayans. It broke the "f-word" count set by Scarface but was surpassed in 1989 by "Do The Right Thing"
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    Murphy's next stint was 1988's "Coming to America", which was based off of a story that he originally came up with. The film centered around Murphy playing an African crown prince who comes to the U.S. looking for a wife.

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    In 1989, Murphy got to play alongside one of his comedic idols, Richard Pryor, in "Harlem Nights".
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    His second music album, "So Happy" was released in 1989, peaking at only #70 on the album charts. It had only one charting single, "Put Your Mouth on Me", which reached #27. That song was his last charting single to date.
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    In 1992, Murphy starred in "Boomerang", alongside Halle Berry, Robin Givens, David Alan Grier, and Martin Lawrence. He was nominated for an MTV Movie Award for Best Comedic Performance for his role.

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    Eddie's last studio album, "Love's Alright", was released in 1993. It failed to produce any big singles and did not chart on the Billboard 200 albums chart.
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    In 1996, he starred in the remake of "The Nutty Professor". He received multiple nominations for the role, including a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy. The film was a major success, grossing $274 million worldwide. It also produced a sequel, "The Nutty Professor II: The Klumps", which was a success as well in 2000.

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    One of Murphy's next movie ventures was "Vampire in Brooklyn", in 1995, in which he starred in as well as producing and writing.

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    His first animated role came in the 1998 Disney hit, "Mulan", in which he played a dragon named Mushu.

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    Murphy continued the family movie trend with "Dr. Dolittle", another remake, in 1998. The movie was a box office hit and spawned a sequel, "Dr. Dolittle 2" (2001), as well as three more direct-to-video sequels.

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    In 1999, he starred alongside Steve Martin in "Bowfinger", in which he was nominated for a Black Reel Award and a Blockbuster Entertainment Award.
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    From 1999 to 2001, Murphy went to TV to play Thurgood Stubbs on the animated series, "The PJ's". The series was nominated for an Annie Award (Outstanding Individual Achivement for Voice Acting in an Animated Television Production) and an Emmy (Outstanding Animated Program).

    Photo: (YouTube)

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    In 2001, he returned to animated family films in "Shrek", alongside Mike Meyers and Cameron Diaz. He played Donkey, Shrek's sidekick. The film spawned multiple sequels, "Shrek 2" (2004), "Shrek the Third" (2007), and "Shrek Forever After" (2010).
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    In 2002, he starred with Robert DeNiro in the action comedy film, "Showtime". The film was not well received, however, with critics or audiences, and was the beginning of a string of flops that year which also included "I Spy" with Owen Wilson.

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    Murphy starred in possibly one of the biggest commercial film disasters of all time, "The Adventures of Pluto Nash", in 2002. Combined with "Showtime" and "I Spy" both underperforming, the year was not a great one for Murphy. The film's budget was estimated at $100 million and only grossed $7 million at the worldwide box office.

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    Things looked up in 2003, when he starred in the family comedy "Daddy Day Care". The film, although not a hit with critics, scored well at the box office and more than doubled its budget.

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    Murphy finally got the respect of the critics again with his performance in the drama, "Dreamgirls", alongside Beyonce and Jennifer Hudson.

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    Murphy received numerous awards for the role, includnig the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture and the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Supporting Role. He was also nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.

    Photo: Getty Images

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    The fat suit returned in 2007 with "Norbit", in which Murphy once again played numerous characters. Although the film was nominated for many Razzie awards and panned by critics, it was a commercial success, grossing nearly $160 million worldwide and even getting nominated for an Academy Award for Best Make-Up.

    Photo: (YouTube)

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    In 2008, Murphy went back to critical and commercial disasters with "Meet Dave". It was nominated for Razzie Awards and a punchline for many comedians.
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    In 2009, he tried another go-around at the family friend comedies, however, the turnout was similar to "Meet Dave", and it was another critical and commercial flop.
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    In 2011, Murphy jonied an all-star cast for "Tower Heist", a heist comedy film. He starred in the film with Matthew Broderick, Ben Stiller, Casey Affleck, and Gabourey Sidibe. The film was a moderate success with critics, but did well at the box office.

    Photo: Getty Images

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    Murphy's most recent theatrical was 2012's "A Thousand Words". It was released four years after it was actually filmed in 2008. The film actually received a score of 0% on Rotten Tomatoes, and flopped at the box office. Critics agreed that centering the movie around a comedian who can't talk wasn't the best idea.
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    In 2012, Murphy was the guest of honor at the TV special, "Eddie Murphy: One Night Only".

    Photo: Getty Images

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    In 2013, he returned to music with his reggae-infused single, "Red Light", featuring Snoop Lion.