Super-producer Greg Berlanti and Arrow co-showrunner Wendy Mericle have gotten a put pilot commitment from Fox for a female-lead reboot of the 1970’s series Kung Fu. The new series will be a sequel to the one that was created by Ed Spielman and starred David Carradine as Kwai Chang Caine. It was set in the 1880’s and told the story of a Shaolin monk who travels to the American Old West to find his half-brother.
The new series, written by Mericle, will follow Lucy Chang, a Buddhist monk and kung fu master in 1950s America as she searches for the man who stole her child years before. She teams with a charming Korean War vet named JT Cullen who has secrets of his own. The two form an unlikely alliance as Lucy continues her search and helping people along the way. If it goes to series, it will be a rare thing on television, a series with an Asian lead.
The original series started in 1972 as a 90-minute TV movie that worked as a pilot. It ran for three seasons on ABC and then got a stand-along TV movie on CBS in 1986. In Kung Fu: The Movie, Carridine reprised his role as Caine with Brandon Lee playing his son. Lee then starred in a pilot for Kung Fu: The Next Generation but it never went to series. There was also Kung Fu: The Legend Continues which aired for four seasons (1993-97).