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Baz Luhrmann in talks to bring Kung Fu to big screen

Baz Luhrmann is in talks to bring the cult 1970s martial arts western Kung Fu to the big screen, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

Luhrmann, fresh from box-office success with last year’s The Great Gatsby, would rewrite the screenplay if he takes charge of the cameras. A film version of Kung Fu has been mooted in Hollywood since at least 2006, with Aliens star Bill Paxton having been briefly attached to direct a previous iteration in 2011.

The original series starred the late David Carradine as a Shaolin monk, Kwai Chang Caine, who leaves China in order to try and find his family in the old American west. Details of his current life are interspersed with flashbacks to his training with blind mentor Master Po, who refers to him as “young grasshopper”.

The series ran between 1972 and 1975 but has been much repeated. Quentin Tarantino’s decision to cast Carradine in his Kill Bill films also led to renewed interest in the show.

The big-screen take on Kung Fu would reportedly transfer the action to China, and sees Caine searching for his father. The current screenplay is by Black Swan writer John McLaughlin.