The latest and third instalment in the global phenomenal franchise, “Kung Fu Panda 3” ruled the US box-office for weeks and is tracking almost US$200 million to-date. The latest kick-ass and hyper-action family-oriented animation brings back Jack Black as the loveable Po along with the Furious Five, Tigress (voiced by Angelina Jolie Pitt), Viper (Lucy Liu), Mantis (Seth Rogen), Crane (David Cross) and Monkey (Jackie Chan) with their Master Shifu (Dustin Hoffman) who now brings the franchise into full-swing action mode as he takes on to be the Furious Five’s master.
Po, considered as the Dragon Warrior is now tasked by Master Shifu to take on the role of being the teacher to the Furious Five, a task Po is not so ready to take on, not initially at least. Making the transition from student to teacher isn’t the only upheaval in Po’s life. His long-lost biological father, Li Chan, has made his way to the Valley of Peace and to an emotional and hilarious reunion with Po. Acclaimed “Breaking Bad” star Bryan Cranston joins the franchise to lend his voice to Li.
Meanwhile, Po and the Furious Five have yet to encounter their ultimate nemesis, Kai (voiced by J.K. Simmons), once brothers-in-arms with Po’s father figure mentor Oogway (Randall Duk Kim), the ancient tortoise who now lives in the spirit realm. In the Spirit Realm, Kai has taken the chi from thousands of masters, collecting them as jade amulets on his belt. With this accumulated power, he defeats Oogway, breaks free from the Spirit Realm, and arrives on Earth. The only one who can defeat Kai is a master of chi, and the only teachers of chi are pandas – or so Li tells Po.
Black embraced the opportunity to revisit one of his most treasured movie characters and found it easy to reclaim his inner-Dragon Warrior. “I just go back to a younger me, when I was starting my career,” he explains. “That’s how I see Po – as young lover of kung fu. My love was rock and roll and acting, but Po and I share that unreserved passion. I, too, was a young Dragon Warrior,” he jokes.
“Kung Fu Panda 3” kicks in full blast in cinemas on its regular opening day on March 9 in 2D, 3D and IMAX 3D screens nationwide from DreamWorks Animation and 20th Century Fox to be distributed by Warner Bros.
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