Eddie Murphy Recalls Prince Stories, Confirms and Denies "Folklore" Trivia on 'The Tonight Show' (Exclusive)

During his interview with Jimmy Fallon, the actor and comedian reveals 'Who Framed Roger Rabbit' is the only film he ever turned down that became a big hit. "Now every time I see it I feel like an idiot," he says.
Andrew Lipovsky/NBC
Eddie Murphy on 'The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon'

Ahead of his hosting gig on the season finale of Saturday Night Live, Eddie Murphy dropped by The Tonight Show to chat with Jimmy Fallon about trivia from his career — including why he wasn't in Ghostbusters and whether he had dinner with Marlon Brando — and his memories from hanging with Prince.

First up, Murphy launched into a Prince memory. "It was 2 or 3 in the morning, we were at his house and Prince says, 'Who wants to go roller-skating?' I was like, 'What?' We went to this roller rink at 3 in the morning. … He had skates that would light up." When Fallon labeled the situation "bizarre," Murphy added that it was "surreal."

The late night host then pressed Murphy to tell another Prince-related story, which he obliged. "Where I live now, Prince stayed a couple of houses down, and my chef was leaving at 2 in the morning once. A car goes by — a purple car, with music — and he was like, 'It's Prince!' The hubcap comes off and the car keeps going. He picks the hubcap up and it's got the Prince thing on the hubcap. … The car makes a big U-turn and comes back and Prince says, 'Can I have my hubcap back?'"

Further into the show, Fallon dove into some "Eddie Murphy folklore stories." First up was the fact that Murphy and Jerry Seinfeld started their comedy careers at the same week at the same comedy club — to which Murphy said, "We both started at the Comic Strip at the same time."

In other folklore, Fallon noted that Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis wanted Murphy to be one of the original Ghostbusters, but he turned it down. Murphy confirmed that he was busy filming Beverly Hills Cop when Ghostbusters came around, so he didn't turn it down per se. "The only one I ever turned down that became a big hit was Who Framed Roger Rabbit?," said Murphy. "I was going to be the Bob Hoskins dude, and I was like, 'What? Animation and people? That sounds like bullshit to me.' Now every time I see it I feel like an idiot."

Murphy then confirmed a rumor that Marlon Brando called to have dinner with him after 48 Hours came out. "Yes, that was surreal, too," said the actor.

Moving on to hobby-themed trivia, Murphy admitted that he once owned one of the world's biggest collections of Elvis memorabilia, but as he got older, he considered it unnecessary. "Many, why do I got this shit," the comedian reflected. 

The actor added, "I still love Elvis, but he was much cooler when I was younger. As you get older, you start to see the whole picture, [and], it's like, 'Hey man, take that shit off the wall.'"

On the tail end of the folklore conversation, Fallon suggested to Murphy that right before he landed his job on SNL, he was fired from his job as a shoe salesman. "I wasn't fired, I quit that job" clarified Murphy, adding that the job was at Chandler's Shoes inside a mall on Long Island. 

View the full clip below.