Eddie Murphy to Voice Hong Kong Phooey in Live-Action Film

Published 4 years ago by , Updated August 6th, 2013 at 2:01 pm,

Back in 2009, we reported that the popular 1970s cartoon Hong Kong Phooey was being reimagined for the big screen as a live action/animation kids film. Now, we know who is voicing everyone’s favorite “number one super guy.”

According to reports, Eddie Murphy is taking on the role of Hong Kong Phooey, a bumbling canine kung-fu master who is the alter ego of police janitor Penrod “Penry” Pooch. In the original series, Hong Kong Phooey was voiced by famous musician and actor, Scatman Crothers.

As Deadline notes, this isn’t the first time Murphy has lent his voice to the big screen. The actor’s turn as the lovable and annoying Donkey in the Shrek series is one of the actor’s more famous recent roles, and Murphy also voiced Mushu in Disney’s Mulan.

Hong Kong Phooey, which is directed by direct-to-DVD veteran Alex Zamm, will be an interesting test of whether modern audiences are interested in rehashing nearly 40-year-old characters. Despite a critical drubbing (including a 2/5 star review from Screen Rant), The Smurfs has enjoyed a relatively successful box office run. Could Hong Kong Phooey find similar success?

While Eddie Murphy is certainly a known quantity, one has to wonder whether Hong Kong Phooey is too obscure of a character to merit its own movie. Unlike The Smurfs, which is a better-known franchise thanks to its comic book beginnings and long-lasting syndication, Hong Kong Phooey only aired for one season.

Like other Hanna-Barbera cartoons, Hong Kong Phooey was also syndicated, but it’s not something that kids are likely to be familiar with. In fact, I think the last time Hong Kong Phooey was on TV was when I was a kid more than 20 years ago.

hong kong phooey Eddie Murphy to Voice Hong Kong Phooey in Live Action Film

That being said, there is certainly a place for Hong Kong Phooey on the big screen. Kids movies are notorious for being bad and still making big money at the box office, so it’s not as if Alcon Entertainment is making a terrible investment.

One has to wonder, however, what the final version of the film will look like. In the cartoon, Hong Kong Phooey is an anthropomorphic dog who walks, talks, and interacts with humans. Will he be the same way in the movie, or is it going to be more like Garfield, where the character is a CGI pet?

What do you think? Is Hong Kong Phooey something you’re even remotely interested in seeing, with or without Eddie Murphy?

Source: Deadline

Get our free email alerts on the topics and author of this article:


Post a Comment

GravatarWant to change your avatar?
Go to Gravatar.com and upload your own (we'll wait)!

 Rules: No profanity or personal attacks.
 Use a valid email address or risk being banned from commenting.

If your comment doesn't show up immediately, it may have been flagged for moderation. Please try refreshing the page first, then drop us a note and we'll retrieve it. Keep in mind that we do not allow external links in the comments.

  1. im 20 and i remember Hong Kong Phooey being on late night along with every other Hannah Barabara Cartoon. They werent bad and its how i learned that tv shows recycled scripts.

    Eddie Murphy in this movie is just to sell tickets. They are gonna use computers to match the sounds closer to the original cartoon. The Character will sound as much like Eddie Murphy as Yogi sounded like Dan Akyroyd and Alvin sounded like Justin Long

    (also, when are they gonna make a live action Jabber Jaw movie???)

    • Jabber Jaw! Awesome! Much better (and fun) idea than HKP. Maybe a cameo from Speed Buggy!

  2. Apparently Eddie Murphy has a new strategy for his career – Remove Eddie Murphy from the movie and it MIGHT do well

    I mean look at Shrek’s Donkey, his only successful acting gig in the last 20 years. Apparently there’s more appeal to Eddie as a donkey & a dog janitor than there is in Fat Eddie, Female Eddie, Alien Eddie, or just plain Eddie.

    I miss RAW.

    • There’s nothing funnier than a coked up Eddie Murphy in leather. NOTHING! He was a God.

  3. this is sweet i love hong kong hooey it was my favorite when i was young and im 17 so the number one super guy has been tv quite a bit

  4. Just won’t be the same without the great Scatman Crothers.

  5. Forget a kung-fu talking dog. Gimme a shark walking around doing a Curly impression while solving mysteries and stuff.

  6. I remember Hong Kong Phooey from when I was a kid and I really liked it. I’m not sure I’d see this in the theaters, but it would definitely be a rental!

  7. Nice. Now to read up on my The Hong Kong Book Of Kung Fu and wash the Phooeymobile in preperation.

    Wouldn’t mind a remake of Wacky Races while they are remaking 70’s classics.

  8. Wrong voice for Hong Kong Phooey… How about Bill Cosby or someone closer to Scatman Crothers voice? And no stupid Eddie Murphy laugh!

  9. While I hope it is closer to Yogi Bear or Garfield (CGI character) than to Underdog (which should have been a CGI character) I hope they don’t make the same error as Yogi Bear (as a talking bear who concocts schemes to steal campers’ picnic baskets is not a good enough novelty item/public draw to save a “failing” park)- but rather have the Hong Kong Phooey film set in a pop-art universe where human characters think nothing of a talking dog janitor much less Hong Kong Phooey, you have the change in the file cabinet, and have a sidekick cat pal who solves problems faster than his dimwitted hero friend….and while masses are amazed, they simply accept this and no explanation is really given.

    As for Eddie Murphy voicing the character. I’m a bit skeptical. Now, if they said Chris Rock that would be another story.

  10. One of my favorite saturday morning cartoons next to Space Ghost! I’m SMH at this though. Scatman was the only cat who could do the voice.
    That would have been like someone else doing Optimus Prime’s voice.. NOOOO!

    I think Johnny Quest would be the best out of all the old toons to make into a movie.

  11. Hahahahaha..’Eddie! What the hell is going on Black..
    Everytime I turn around, gotta start defending a brother. It’s getting tired..don’t forget the Dave Chapelle conspirators that ‘once they’ve had enough that’s it ..you gonna be shut down. It’s getting embarssing how you’ve just let *everything fall apart..

  12. “Hong Kong Fooey… number one super guy…” I feel so guilty in saying this, but I’m actually looking forward to this. Please oh please, give us a decent script; let this NOT be UNDERDOG… And yes, I’d love to see a Jabberjaw movie! And put Will Sasso as his voice. :)

  13. I absolutely loved Hong Kong Phooy, but Eddie Murphey ? I’ll pass. The guys hasn’t done anything worth watching in over a decade and his voice isn’t really that fitting.

  14. Snoop Dogg should be HKP, surly?

    • Eddie is not the rite voice for this snoop. Mite can do it. Please dont mess this movie up..

  15. Interesting to see gen y is aware of this character, as I thought it stopped being repeated when gen xers like myself were babes. If there’s cross generational appeal it should definately work as a remake, if not for the brilliance of the concept itself. I mean there was only one season, so there’s room for growth. Superman on the other hand???

  16. I remember watching Hong Kong Phooey as a kid, it was one of my favorite shows. I’m 22 now so when I was a kid it was played on Boomerang, but even so I still loved it. I even had a t-shirt of it back then, so yes I was a huge fan of the show. To see it as a movie I’m both excited and worried. The way movie adaptations of old cartoons have been going these days are not good. The Smurfs, Yogi Bear, Garfield, and Underdog are just a dew cartoons that have been butchered on the big screen. If they can make Hong Kong Phooey and stick close to the source material then I will be happy to see it in theaters. So I guess we’ll just have to wait and see what happens.

  17. Will Smith voice of hkf maybe?

  18. Will Smith voice of hkp/ Hong Kong Phooey

  19. Tracy Morgan should be HKP, surly?
    As in Hong Kong Phooey

  20. marlon wayans or shawn wayans Or will smith should be HKP, surly?
    As in Hong Kong Phooey