Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

Bryan Cranston is a talking panda in the Kung Fu Panda 3 trailer

The first two Kung Fu Panda films got a lot of mileage from fish-out-of-water comedy about a bumbling panda named Po (Jack Black) who was raised by an adoptive goose father and trained to be a kung fu warrior alongside a tiger, a monkey, a snake, a crane, and a praying mantis. But forget about all that animal diversity—the third film is going all panda, all the time. In this new trailer Po is reunited (kind of) with his long-lost biological father, a similarly dunderheaded panda voiced by Bryan Cranston.

This third film builds directly on Kung Fu Panda 2, which explored the dark history of Po’s biological parents, who were forced to abandon him as a baby while on the run from an evil ruler. Po’s mother died protecting him (because Dreamworks apparently operates on the Disney rule of dead mothers), but the end of the film hinted that Po’s father was still alive and living in a massive panda colony.

According to Kung Fu Panda 3’s plot description, Cranston’s character brings Po to that secret panda paradise, which is full of “hilarious new panda characters,” one of whom will likely be voiced by new cast member Rebel Wilson. But when a supernatural villain named Kai (J.K. Simmons) threatens China, Po has to train his “fun-loving, clumsy” brethren to become—wait for it—Kung Fu Pandas. All that panda-centric fun hits theaters January 2016.

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