When it was announced that actor-director Stephen Chow would be dropping out of Seth Rogen and Michel Gondry's adaptation of the classic radio serial The Green Hornet, many questioned whether this might be the final nail in the coffin of a production already beleaguered by a number of setbacks.
Gondry was offered the director's chair following Chow's departure, but that still left the hero without his trusty sidekick, Kato (famously portrayed by Bruce Lee in the '60s TV show). Enter Jay Chou, an award-winning musician, singer, producer, actor, and director from Taiwan, most widely known in the U.S. for his appearance in Curse of the Golden Flower.
In a recent interview with Channel News Asia, Chou said there were a number of reasons why he simply "had to" take the role of Kato.
It's a role that Bruce Lee once played, plus it's a positive Asian role which is rare in Hollywood.
Anyway, I went to Hollywood not just to make it big and develop my film career. I went there to also introduce my music to the Americans. So that they will notice me.
In a separate interview with The Star Online, Chou said that he had fun working on The Green Hornet, but that the Hollywood-style production tried his patience.
In Asia, we get through a movie very quickly. We get the script, we get working and it's done. In Hollywood, they have rehearsals that go on for half a month before they begin shooting and shooting can go on for months.
The Green Hornet was adapted for the screen by Rogen and his frequent collaborator Evan Goldberg. The movie also stars Cameron Diaz, Christoph Waltz, Edward Furlong, and Edward James Olmos.