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Donnie Yen to Star in Universal’s Adaptation of 1972 ‘Kung Fu’ TV Series

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Martial-arts superstar Donnie Yen will be starring in a new feature-film adaptation of Kung Fu, which was an acclaimed series on ABC-TV in 1972. The upcoming film is being produced by 87North and Universal Pictures. Kung Fu had reappeared as a television series in 2021 but was cancelled after its third season last year.

Stephen Chin of War Dogs is writing the screenplay for the new feature. It’s being speculated that David Leitch will be directing the adaptation. He is producing the film along with Kelly McCormick, Stephen L’Heureux, and Guy Danella. Leitch had previously directed Deadpool 2 and Bullet Train.

In the 1972 television drama, which was set in the late nineteenth century, David Carradine played the role of Kwai Chang Caine, a Shaolin monk and master martial artist who fled China after his own master had been murdered. Caine was the orphaned son of an American man and a Chinese woman. After coming to the Old West, he used his powers to help others while fighting off would-be assassins.

The 60-year-old Donnie Yen was born in Guangzhou and is now based in Hong Kong. He is known worldwide for his performances in IP Man, Rogue One, and John Wick Chapter 4. He also deployed his martial-arts skills in such films as SPL/Kill Zone and Flashpoint and in the Disney film Mulan. Yen also recently starred in Sakra, an adaptation of the Chinese novel Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils, which he also directed and produced.

Speaking of the new Kung Fu venture, director David Leitch was quoted in Deadline as saying: “Donnie Yen is both an immensely talented actor and an action film legend, and it is a privilege to have a true martial arts master leading this global film. With Donnie in place as our leading man, it will be a thrill to collaborate with him, our creative partners, and Universal in reimagining this beloved story for the big screen.”

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Edward Moran
Edward Moranhttps://www.cinemadailyus.com
Edward Moran began his journalistic career many decades ago as a theater and cinema reviewer for Show Business and the New York Theater Review. More recently he contributed film reviews to hosokinema.com and Movie Sleuth. His writings have appeared in publications as diverse as the Times Literary Supplement, Publishers Weekly, the Paris Review, and the Massachusetts Review. Moran also edited a memoir by Oscar-nominated documentary filmmaker Christine Choy. He served as literary advisor to her film Hyam Plutzik: American Poet, which was the keynote film in the American Perspectives series at the 2007 Zebra Poetry Film Festival in Berlin.

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