Wednesday, May 9, 2012


The Kung Fu Panda movies comprised an ensemble cast of voice actors from up and comers to veterans. I loved the movies and totally recommend them as great examples of Dream Works SKG studios really hitting their stride when it comes to making entertaining animated movies that can finally catch up to Pixar. Each of the members of the Furious 5 are given simple albeit a tad predictable names based on a fighting style but species.

Monkey and Viper, voiced respectably by Jackie Chan and Lucy Liu which is understandable as Liu has a distinct and very smooth sensual voice, Chan on the other hand I always thought was something of an odd choice as he is many things martial arts movie legend...ok mostly just that, (the guy gets typecast quite a lot) but voice actor?  Well ok then, and it works.
Crane voiced by comedian David Cross who is in his own right an edgy comedic actor with great timing though he wasn't given that much to work with as a support cast member I still like the way he toes the line between his stand up and his more family oriented stuff- though his role in the Alvin and the Chipmunks movie was, well...

Voiced by Seth Rogen who lately seems to have taken on the stigma of playing another insectoid hero as Green Hornet, which is surprisingly entertaining if you're not a nostalgia purist.

Voice acting provided by the always entertaining Jack Black as the titular hero and the "panda" part of the Kung Fu Panda we watch his progress from waiter at his adopted father's noodle restaurant to become the Dragon Warrior.
Tai Lung voiced by Ian McShane, a perfect predator and brooding badass, I love alliteration. Plus the use of a snow leopard as the main antagonist was a very nice choice, there seems to be a theme with endangered species or it could just be coincidence. 
Tigress voiced by Angelina Jolie, gotta love it when an "A" lister takes on what essentially is a partly anonymous role of voice acting for animation, not to mention a support cast role as the stoic and temperamental leader of the Furious 5.  
Master Shifu and Mr. Ping
voiced by Dustin Hoffman and James Hong, gotta love the voice work here. 

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