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Baz Luhrmann to Direct Kung Fu?

In talks

By Robert T. Trate     April 12, 2014
Source: The Hollywood Reporter

Will Kung Fu leap to the big screen?
© Legendary
Now here is a film I never thought I would see. Baz Luhrmann, the director of Moulin Rogue! and The Great Gatsby, is currently in talks to direct a big screen adaptation of Kung Fu. Yes, the same Kung Fu TV series that featured David Carradine (also from Kill Bill Vol. 1 & 2). For the final twist John McLaughlin, the screenwriter of Black Swan, is penning the script. 

The Hollywood Reporter had the exclusive story:The Australian filmmaker behind The Great Gatsby is in talks to direct Kung Fu, Legendary Pictures' big-screen adaptation of the 1970s martial arts Western television show. It is unclear how far along the talks are. Legendary had no comment, but the company is beginning to ramp up its Chinese-centric projects again (Yimou Zhang is in talks to revive the company's adventure movie The Great Wall) and Kung Fu has Chinese roots.

If a deal is made, Luhrmann would first do a rewrite on the script before proceeding (The current script is by Black Swan scribe John McLaughlin.)”. 

The original TV series ran from 1972 to 1975 and still has a massive cult following. The artistic style of Luhrmann and a Kung Fu western? I say bring it on!

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Showing items 1 - 10 of 13
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gammenon 4/12/2014 8:43:38 AM

Not sure if this is an attempt to right the wrong when they snubbed Bruce Lee for David Carradine for the leading role..but I'll pass nevertheless...

xenomorph 4/12/2014 9:29:18 AM

 I just hope they cast a Chinese actor for the lead.

fenngibbon 4/12/2014 12:12:06 PM

 Didn't the character have a Chinese mother and American father?  

AtomykRayj 4/12/2014 6:11:05 PM

Moulin Rogue? Never heard of it. Rouge yes, rogue, no. Didn't watch this as I was born in '79 but I did watch Kung Fu: The Legend Continues.

blankczech 4/12/2014 6:21:43 PM

Yes fenngibbon the character Kwai Chang Caine (Carradine) was the orphaned son of (an American male) Thomas Henry Caine and (a Chinese female) Kwai Lin.  The plot was driven largely on Carradine's search for his American roots and his half brother Danny Caine.  Every thing I've ever read on the subject says that Bruce Lee was never considered for Carradine's part even though Lee is not 100% chinese (he's part german on his mother's side).  As I've heard it told, the reason Lee (who moved to the U.S. when he was 18) was never in the running for the part, is because his english (speaking) was not strong enough (the shows creators thought it might be difficult for an American audience to understand him).  Depending on who's account you read on the subject he may have been offered the part of the Shaolin. This is a mute point IMO since Lee died in 1973 less than a year after the show burst on the scene and the series continued on for 2 years after Lee's death.

Unless you were around to experience it (I was in my twenties at the time) it's hard to explain how incredibly popular this show was.  It meshed well with the whole hippie thing that was going down at the time. Taking place when rock stars were exploring eastern religion and when housewives were trying trancendental meditation.  Kwai Chang Caine even looked like a hippie with long hair and shabby the character was a very soft spoken peaceful man who didn't carry a gun and tried to avoid violence at all costs until he was bullied and/or humiliated beyond his breaking point and had to defend himself.

Kaziklu 4/12/2014 7:19:30 PM

 well it be a remake or a sequal to Kung Fu: The Legend Continues. 

monkeyfoot 4/13/2014 7:08:21 AM

 Loved this! For those interested you can find original episodes on YouTube.

Muenster 4/13/2014 11:23:30 AM

blankchech, there was also the very real fact that Bruce Lee was, despite his immeasurable physical and athletic talent, an absolutely terrible actor... In two languages. Sure, it was a joy and a thrill to see him move around on the big screen, but the moment he began to speak lines... Well, you get the idea. Some had claimed it was a racial thing, but it was most likely his abysmal acting ability that frightened off American directors and producers.

I for one would like to see a new Kung-Fu series.

dojen1 4/13/2014 11:32:43 AM

will it be set in the Old West?...with a rousing disco dance music score? Sorry but the soundtrack put me completely OFF his Great Gatsby.

BTW Blankczech: it's "moot point", not mute. Just sayin'

misterpeed 4/13/2014 2:58:59 PM

It all comes down to cast and script

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