Judge Reinhold on what happened to Beverly Hills Cop 4

Seems to be raining “Beverly Hills Cop” news today, what with the first pics of Eddie Murphy and Brandon T.Jackson surfacing from the set of the new series.

Now, Judge Reinhold, who only recently discovered he’d be reprising his role as Billy Rosewood (from the three “Beverly Hills Cop” films) for the new show, has spoken about how elated he is in being asked back to the Beverly Hills Police Department while offering his thoughts on the long-proposed but seemingly now-dead “Beverly Hills Cop 4”.

Reinhold tells Empire that Eddie Murphy wasn’t happy with the direction that Brett Ratner – who was attached to direct “Beverly Hills Cop 4” – was taking the series so hints that the plan for a new movie have been shelved (in favour of the series).

“Eddie wasn’t satisfied with what was happening. That’s all I can say. But we’ve had a lot of scenarios over the years. Robert Towne pitched what I thought was cool: the Japanese literally take over Sony! But that didn’t go. And then we had something in London. I don’t know who was responsible for that, but I just saw Taggart and me in bobby hats. I don’t mean to diss the force there, but that would have been funny. So there were scenarios that I thought were delightful, but for one reason or another they didn’t get there. When you’re dealing with big committees, it’s easy for these things to fall through the cracks and splatter on the wall.”

One of the scripts, by Derek Haas and Michael Brandt, saw Billy Rosewood being murdered!

Here’s what I wrote about that at the time :

If you’re going to make a new “Beverly Hills Cop” movie you don’t kill off its most beloved character – next to Axel – within the first five minutes of the film!

But that’s indeed what Brett Ratner’s upcoming “Beverly Hills Cop 2009″ plans to do, by killing Judge Reinhold’s much-loved character Billy Rosewood off (by the sounds of it, they won’t even need Reinhold!).

Latino Review got their hands on some story details for the new film and reported that the guts of the movie will fix on Axel Foley (Eddie Murphy) trying to find out who killed Billy.

Says the site, “It’s been 15 years since Axel Foley was last in Beverly Hills, and screenwriters Michael Brandt and Derek Haas needed a good reason to bring him back. That reason comes just a couple of pages into the latest script for Beverly Hills Cop IV (which calls itself Beverly Hills Cop 2009) – Judge Reinhold’s Billy Rosewood takes a leap out the 20th story of the Los Angeles Police HQ. When Axel hears that his former partner and best buddy became sidewalk salad he knows it wasn’t a suicide and he flies to Beverly Hills to get all the facts for himself.”

”It turns out that Billy was learning about a group of corrupt LAPD officers who were involved with gun running with a Beverly Hills rich kid who has ties to the military. The mystery isn’t that big a deal, and Axel mostly gets from place to place by half-assedly conning people. He makes up a fake story about who he is and then doesn’t follow through on it. It’s like Brandt and Haas saw the first BHC and just didn’t have the energy to write anything that matched up to it”.

Rosewood is one of the series’ high-points, he always brings the laughs and a certain sweetness to each movie. You don’t kill that character off – you’ll lose the audience (fuck, if anyone, kill of that Serge character, played by Bronson Pinchot! or maybe even Ronny Cox’s Lt. Andrew Bogomil!?).

Thank god it never came to be.

Reinhold seems confident that the new show will make up for the ‘good’  “Beverly Hills Cop 4” that never came to be.

“When I met [Shawn Ryan], he said to me, “I just want to make the best pilot the world has ever seen, and we’ll go from there.” He’s structured the show enough like the first movie that I think fans will get into it. It’s genuinely funny, but it has a dark edge to it. The sinister element – the jeopardy – is essential. This is a return, not to an amusement park, but to something that is truly dangerous. The antagonist is really scary. ”

While Reinhold can’t say whether Rosewood will appear in any episodes beyond the pilot (“what he does in the pilot is a fun twist. We want to keep that under wraps”), he trusts the audiences will enjoy the new characters.

what he does in the pilot is a fun twist. We want to keep that under wraps.

“Aaron is a liason between the Beverly Hills Cop police department and Detroit. He’s basically taken over his dad’s job. He’s being played by an actor called Brandon T. Jackson, who’s probably best known for being in Tropic Thunder. Aaron does a lot of talking himself into and out of situations, and Brandon is very funny. Eddie picked him personally. Incidentally, he’s actually from Detroit.

“Christine Lahti is playing the chief of police. There’s a department lawyer played by the hilarious Kevin Pollak – he’s always representing the department in whatever damage Aaron creates. And then they have this couple of cops who I guess are the Billy and Taggart of the show. They join forces with Aaron. A really remarkable actress called Sheila Vand – she played the housekeeper in Argo who spoke only Farsi – and a guy called David Denman, from The Office.”

Reinhold is as excited as the rest of us that Billy Rosewood’s returning for CBS’s “Beverly Hills Cop”.

“It felt like the whole world was excited when the news broke! The shoot starts on March 16 and goes on into April. I didn’t find out until recently that Barry Sonnenfeld, who’s a freaking legend, is directing. I can’t wait. I really care about Billy Rosewood. He’s my George Bailey from It’s A Wonderful Life. Not to put Jimmy Stewart and me in the same league, but Billy’s my man.”

Billy’s the man.

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