Thursday, January 13, 2011

The Green Hornet

Not too much is going on here, although I am heading out to see the play Play Dead tonight.  It should be interesting.  It is co-written and co-produced by Teller, the silent half of Penn and Teller, the magicians.  I enjoy their shows and have seen them live twice.  The play is supposed to be quite interesting, full of gory special affects.  It is off-broadway in a little 50 seat theatre that is supposedly done up to look like an old deserted theatre.  I will report on my evening tomorrow.

But, today we will do one of these weird and little known connection things.  And, what with all the buzz about the new Green Hornet movie, what better topic.

First, did you know that the Green Hornet is a distant relative of the Lone Ranger?  Ah yes, and the reason has something to do with the fact that the impetus behind The Green Hornet was George W. Trendle who was the co-owner  and managing parner of WXYZ and spearheaded the development of The Lone Ranger.

In "real life" the Green Hornet is Britt Reid, a newpaper publisher.  The Lone Ranger was originally John Reid, a Texas Ranger and lone survivor of an ambush.  The Green Hornet is the great nephew of The Lone Ranger.

Now, after starting as a radio program, Universal Pictures made two Green Hornet serials.  In those serials the part of Kato was played by Keye Luke, perhaps best known for his role as "Number One Son" in the Charlie Chan movies.

In more recent time it was Bruce Lee who played Kato in the television series.  And, here comes that unexpected loop-around, Bruce Lee was strongly being considered to play the lead in the Kung Fu series.  One of the main reason he moved back to Hong Kong and started his movies career was because he was so upset about losing the role to David Carradine, who wasn't even Asian, to boot.  Anyway, so what has this got to do with anything?  Well, the actor who plays Master Po in Kung Fu is, you guessed it, the original screen version of Kato, dear old Keye Luke.

Now you will all have something to contribute to the water-cooler conversations about The Green Hornet.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

You are going to spill the beans (!) on that last story, aren't you?