How Did Actress Madge Sinclair Die?

James Earl Jones and Madge Sinclair

YouTube Screengrab from Coming to America (1988)

The Coming 2 America sequel will feature almost all of the original cast members when it makes its debut on Amazon Prime on March 5.

The long-awaited follow-up to the 1988 Eddie Murphy hit follows his newly crowned character King Akeem and his best friend Semmi (Arsenio Hall)  in a new, heir-related adventure set in New York City.

Returning cast members include Shari Headley, who played, Lisa, Akeem’s love interest turned wife in the original film, and  John Amos who played Lisa’s father, Cleo McDowell.  Acting legend James Earl Jones will be back as Akeem’s father, King Jaffe Joffer. Even Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Garcelle Beauvais, who played a royal rose bearer in the original film, will make a return for Coming 2 America, according to Hollywood Life.

New cast members will include Leslie Jones, Traci Morgan, Wesley Snipes,  Jermaine Fowler, Kiki Lane, Teyanna Taylor, and Murphy’s real-life daughter Bella.

Sadly, a beloved original Coming to America star, Madge Sinclair, has passed away, so her character, Queen Aoleon Joffer, Akeem’s mother and the Queen of Zamunda, will not be part of the new movie.

Although Sinclair’s character will not be in Coming 2 America, fans are hoping she will be honored in some way with either a film dedication or an image of her in the palace.


Madge Sinclair Died 7 Years After the Original ‘Coming to America’ Film

Sinclair, an Emmy-winning actress known for her work in the 1977 TV miniseries Roots, was diagnosed with leukemia in 1982 a full six years before she appeared in Coming to America, according to her IMDB bio.

Even though she was given a grim diagnosis, Sinclair continued to work well past her role as the regal and elegant Coming to America queen and all the way up until the year of her death. Sinclair outlived doctors’ predictions for her life expectancy by several years. The actress died at age 57 on December 20, 1995, 13 years after her original cancer diagnosis.

Sinclair was cremated and her ashes were scattered in her Jamaican hometown, per Face 2 Face Africa.


Madge Sinclair Teamed  Up With Her ‘Coming to America’ Husband One More Time to Play a King & Queen Couple

Just one year before her death, Sinclair reunited with her Coming to America co-star James Earl Jones to play royalty for a second time. The two stars provided the voices for Simba’s parents, King Mufasa and his Lion Queen wife, Sarabi, in the 1994 animated feature The Lion King.

The royal redo came four years after Sinclair won an Emmy for her role as Jones’ love interest in the ABC series Gabriel’s Fire, per Sinclair’s obituary in the Independent.

While she also appeared in film blockbusters such as Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, Sinclair enjoyed working on TV as well.

“Some people get snooty about it, but I like working for television,” she said. “I can finish something and see it the next week.”

Madge Sinclair’s last credited acting role was in the 1995 TV series Dream On.

READ NEXT: Eddie Murphy Receives Lifetime Award at Critics’ Choice

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