So, a few years ago, Bill Paxton (of all people) was attached to direct a big screen version of the ’70s series “Kung Fu.” And then, not much happened. But last week, word emerged, that the property was moving again at Universal, and we gotta be honest, we really didn’t see this coming.
Spectacle and glitter specialist, Baz Luhrmann, is now in talks to direct “Kung Fu.” We’ll say this, Luhrmann has generally tended to swing from one genre to another (cabaret to outback drama to literary jazz age orgy) all filtered through his usual style of visual and audio overload, putting his own distinct stamp on whatever material he’s working with. But it is curious to see him take on a show about an orphan, trained as a martial arts master, who travels around righting wrongs and delivering swift justice. But, if the talks all work out, Luhrmann would rewrite the script in place by Rich Wilkes (two “xXx” movies)—which is set in China and follows Caine’s search for his father—presumably to make it less like “xXx” and feature more musical numbers or something.
No word yet on what impact (if any) this will have Luhrmann’s brewing TV projects including former Stanley Kubrick project “Napoleon” for HBO and producer Steven Spielberg, and a TV drama about the early years of hip hop. But yeah, “Kung Fu” directed by Baz Luhrmann….huh…. [THR]