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Kung Fu Panda 3 (2016) Poster

Trivia

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During the travelling montage, Po and his father endure on their way to the secret panda village, they pass by two large stones that sit on an equally stone-like terrain, and are slanted toward the right of the screen. Shrek and Donkey pass by these same stones on their way to Fiona's castle in Shrek (2001).
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On General Kai's chain belt, with the chi amulets of Masters that had died, are several Masters that he did not use. Among them can be seen, the amulets of Masters Elephant, Hippo, Thundering Rhino from Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011), Lizard, Komodo, Frog, Crab, and Tai Lung, indicating that Tai Lung was banished to the Spirit Realm when Po used the Wuxi Finger Hold on him in Kung Fu Panda (2008).
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In order to get a feel for how pandas live, the filmmakers went directly to China's biggest panda preserve in Chengdu. While there, the filmmakers noted that pandas rolled to get places, and incorporated that into this movie.
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This movie was originally scheduled to be released on December 23, 2015, but the studio delayed release to avoid directly competing with Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens (2015).
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Four of Angelina Jolie's children, Shiloh Jolie-Pitt, Pax Jolie-Pitt, Knox Jolie-Pitt, and Zahara Jolie-Pitt, are voice extras when Po talks to the pandas about a game plan.
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The CEO of DreamWorks confirmed that this is not the last movie in the franchise, and that three more Kung Fu Panda movies are planned.
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The jombies were animated to skip some frames throughout their movements to be in direct contrast to the living Masters, who are more fluid in movements.
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Kai's green eyes are in accordance with the Chinese legends of green eyes being synonymous with evil.
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This has been the longest wait for a sequel to a previous DreamWorks computer animated movie to date, being released five years after Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011). This is exceeded by The Croods 2 (2020), releasing seven years after The Croods (2013).
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Kai's name was initially going to be Tian Sha, which means "ferocious (spirit) from heaven", and the characters separately mean "heaven" and "evil spirit" respectively. In the Chinese dub of the movie, his name remains Tian Sha.
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This is the first time that any major American animated feature film has been co-produced with a Chinese firm.
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Kai, the main villain, closely resembles the chief enemy in Po's dream, at the beginning of Kung Fu Panda (2008). Some other characters in the dream also resemble some of the Masters prisoners of Kai.
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Kai is the first Kung Fu Panda villain to not have an English accent.
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Four of the Jombie Masters can be seen as they appeared in life in Po's room: Master Porcupine was gray with orange robes, the Master Badger Twins were black with yellow robes, and Master Gorilla was shown to resemble Lord Shen's gorilla warriors from Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011).
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Throughout the first three movies, each villain represents a different challenge: Tai Lung is force, Lord Shen is mental, and Kai is spiritual.
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Rebel Wilson was the original choice for Mei Mei, but dropped out due to schedule conflicts and was replaced by Kate Hudson.
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One third of the movie was made in China, and the rest was made in the United States, at DreamWorks Animation studios.
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Tai Lung has appeared, in a way, in the first three movies, in Kung Fu Panda (2008), he is the main antagonist, in Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011), he is briefly mentioned, and appeared in a flashback, and in this movie, Po has a toy with the figure of Tai Lung, and Kai has a Chi stone with the shape of him.
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Master Porcupine's design came from concept art of a porcupine that was using his quills to practice acupuncture. This design was initially intended to be used in Kung Fu Panda (2008).
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The only "Kung Fu Panda" movie so far to be distributed by Twentieth Century Fox since the end of DreamWorks Animation's deal with Paramount Pictures in 2012.
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This is the first animated movie of 2016 to feature J.K. Simmons, the other being Zootopia (2016), which is also a movie about anthropomorphic animals.
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Kai's original appearance would have had him with four arms, to resemble a character that was drawn in development for Kung Fu Panda (2008), known as the "Four-Armed Yak Demon God on Fire", who initially would have served as a member of Tai Lung's gang.
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Jamie Campbell Bower was cast to voice Po's biological father, but was replaced by Bryan Cranston. Neither voiced Po's father at the end of Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011), instead being voiced by Fred Tatasciore (who also voiced Shifu in the Kung Fu Panda video games, and Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness (2011)).
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This is the first Kung Fu Panda movie where Tigress wears different clothes. In Kung Fu Panda (2008) and Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011), she wore a red qipao with golden vine patterns and black pants. In this movie, she wears a long-sleeved yellow tunic with red vine patterns and black pants.
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So far the only Kung Fu Panda movie to not be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature. Kung Fu Panda (2008) and Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011) were nominated, but lost to WALL-E (2008) and Rango (2011), respectively.
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The only Kung Fu Panda movie so far solely composed by Hans Zimmer. He worked alongside John Powell when composing the first two movies.
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Kai was previously reported to be voiced by Mads Mikkelsen, who dropped from the movie, due to his character being re-written.
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A deleted scene would have featured Master Shifu speaking to the statue of Master Oogway, expressing his concerns about how the world would be consumed in darkness, and how Shifu might need a hobby or a girlfriend.
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Po's voice actor from the Kung Fu Panda video games and Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness (2011), Mick Wingert, voiced the goose and rabbit farmers in this movie.
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A subplot that was ultimately cut from the finished movie was that Po, Shifu, and the Furious Five would have held off the jombie Masters at a standoff, at which point, the undead Masters would run off, rather than to dissipate into green orbs of light, as they had in the finished movie, but not before one quick skirmish, in which Master Porcupine fired three of his quills from his bow, one of them hitting Mr. Ping, who dove in front of Po to take the shot. In that subplot, Li Shan would have tended to Mr. Ping's injuries, and Mr. Ping would have blamed himself for being a burden to Po, partially due to the toxins of the quill affecting his brain.
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Two deleted scenes from this movie would have featured Po bringing his dirty laundry to Mr. Ping to wash, taking off his pants as he did, and accidentally exposing his rear to the Furious Five, who were reviled, and a scene in which Mr. Ping brings back Po's dirty laundry to his barrack at the Jade Palace. In that scene, Mr. Ping voices his displeasure at Li Shan being included as one of Po's father figures after only being in his life for a few months, and Mr. Ping attempting to right his wrongs towards Li Shan by making plans to prepare an expensive feast for him.
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In the deleted scene in which Mr. Ping visits Po at his barrack, the wok that struck Tai Lung in the face from Kung Fu Panda (2008) can be seen, as well as a drawing of Po (which he likely did himself) with six-pack abs, as well as a poster of the late Master Thundering Rhino standing in front of the Tower of the Sacred Flame from Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011).
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Since this movie released in January, as opposed to June, this is the first Kung Fu Panda movie to not release in the same month as a Disney/Pixar movie. Kung Fu Panda (2008) released the same month as WALL·E (2008), and Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011) released the same month as Cars 2 (2011).
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The first Kung Fu Panda movie to not be the highest grossing animated movie of the year in which it was released. This movie grossed five hundred twenty-one million dollars worldwide, but at the end of the year, it placed sixth in animated movies, behind Finding Dory (2016), Zootopia (2016), The Secret Life of Pets (2016), Moana (2016), and Sing (2016).
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Bryan Cranston's second DreamWorks Animation movie, after Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted (2012).
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The first Kung Fu Panda movie to not have the actor of its main antagonist (J.K. Simmons) nominated for the Annie Award for Best Voice Acting, after Ian McShane was nominated for voicing Tai Lung in Kung Fu Panda (2008), and Gary Oldman was nominated for voicing Shen in Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011). Neither won however, McShane lost to Dustin Hoffman (voice of Master Shifu in Kung Fu Panda (2008)) and Oldman lost to Bill Nighy (voice of Grand-Santa in Arthur Christmas (2011)).
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Wayne Knight, who voiced one of the pandas in the panda village, had also been in Kung Fu Panda (2008), as the voice of the Gang Boss, from Po's dream at the start of the movie, from which Kai had been inspired.
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The first Kung Fu Panda movie, so far, to not to be nominated for Best Animated Feature, for both Academy Awards and Golden Globes Awards.
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Master Oogway is a turtle. Oogway sounds like the Chinese word for turtle, wu gui (woo gway).
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In the Australian version, Kate Langbroek voiced the female goose and Dave Hughes voiced the male goose.
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Dreamworks Animation has reportedly three more movies after this film. Dreamworks CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg confirms that the franchise actually has a total of six movies.
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The first Kung Fu Panda movie to have scroll end credits (appearing from the bottom of the screen to the top).
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Initially, Character Designer Nicolas Marlet designed scarab jombies, to serve as sidekicks to Kai, amongst them, were some that had flame designs and ribbons, like Chinese dancers.
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This is the first King Fu Panda movie to not release the same year as a live-action movie in which Seth Rogen (voice of Mantis) did voice-over work. Kung Fu Panda (2008) released the same year as The Spiderwick Chronicles (2008), and Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011) released the same year as Paul (2011).
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There's a panda, when Po and his parents are received by all the family, that resembles Hodor from Game of Thrones (2011).
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David Cross (Crane) and J.K. Simmons (Kai) appeared in Megamind (2010), another movie by DreamWorks Animation.
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Wayne Knight's fifth theatrically released animated film after Hercules (1997), Tarzan (1999), Toy Story 2 (1999), and Kung Fu Panda (2008).
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DreamWorks Anination's fourth follow-up film to recast some characters in this case with Li Shan, the previous ones to've undergone this were Shrek the Third (2007) with Captain Hook, Shrek Forever After (2010) with Farkel, Fergus, and Rumpelstiltskin and Penguins of Madagascar (2014) with Rico and King Julien.
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DreamWorks Animation's last film to receive a video-game adaptation for traditional video-game consoles (not counting mobile games) until How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (2019).
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This is the first time to have Ava Acres do a movie with Seth Rogen (Mantis).
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DreamWorks Animation's first film to release in January, the month, in which this film released, would be the standard month, in which each DreamWorks Animation film scheduled for a release during a Winter season in the future would release, with the exceptions of How to Train Your Dragon: The Hidden World (2019) and The Croods 2 (2020).
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The seventh theatrically released animated triquel after Pokémon 3: The Movie (2000), Rugrats Go Wild (2003), Shrek the Third (2007), Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs (2009), Toy Story 3 (2010), and Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted (2012).
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The tenth computer-animated sequel to be produced at 2.35:1 after Shrek Forever After (2010), Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011), Cars 2 (2011), Happy Feet Two (2011), Ice Age: Continental Drift (2012), Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs 2 (2013), Rio 2 (2014), How to Train Your Dragon 2 (2014), and Planes: Fire & Rescue (2014).
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Spoilers 

The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

Tigress is the only Kung Fu Master to not have her chi stolen by Kai.
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In the opening sequence, when The Dragon Warrior and the Furious Five were running through the valley, Po jumped to the sky and kicked through a cloud that has the shape of a rhino. This action was made to look like Po just beheaded the rhino, which is a preempting the inevitable ending of the Dragon Warrior defeating the villain Kai.
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At the very beginning of the movie, Master Shifu shows Po and The Five a kung fu move called The Dramatic Exit where he points in one direction exclaiming, "What's that?!" and then when everyone looks, scurries off in the other direction and is gone before anyone notices. This exact move is used by Po to turn the tide in the battle with Kai where Po points and yells, "What's that?" distracting Kai right before Po places himself around Kai's neck, performing wuxi finger hold and exiting the mortal realm very dramatically.
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See also

Goofs | Crazy Credits | Quotes | Alternate Versions | Connections | Soundtracks

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