In looking to make a big-screen adaptation of the TV series Kung Fu, the story of a nomad wandering barren back roads while adhering to a code of monastic austerity, naturally Legendary Pictures has turned to Baz Luhrmann, a man who puts tons of expensive glowing shit everywhere. The possible hiring of the director—a filmmaker for whom, with The Great Gatsby, the naturally gauche excess of the Roaring Twenties was just a baseline—is, in itself, the sort of koan riddle that might have been posed to David Carradine’s Caine. Does a film change the man, or does the man change the film? The answer, grasshopper, lies in the river. Of glitter.
Should Luhrmann take the job, he would be snatching it from the hand of Bill Paxton, who was last attached to direct back in 2011, in turn taking over a project that has been kicking around since at least 2006 with the Hughes brothers. He would also rewrite the last draft of the script from xXx scribe Rich Wilkes, which currently sees Caine journeying to China in search of his father and eventually ending up in prison, where he will be forced to actually use the kung fu he spends all his life desperately trying to avoid, despite that being the name of his show. However, seeing as The Hollywood Reporter notes that Luhrmann will “bring his own signature sensibility to the martial arts Western,” perhaps instead of actual kung fu fighting, Luhrmann’s Caine will simply sing “Kung Fu Fighting.”
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