Quentin Tarantino says 'Kung Fu Panda' is just a 'straight-up parody' of 'Kill Bill'

Ian Gavan/Getty ImagesQuentin Tarantino and Uma Thurman, star of ‘Kill Bill.’
  • Quentin Tarantino thinks “Kung Fu Panda” is a rip off of the “Kill Bill” films, which he directed.
  • The director told BBC Radio 1 that “Kung Fu Panda” was “a straight-up parody” of “Kill Bill” – “in every way.”
  • The Dreamworks animated film does bear a number of similarities with the Uma Thurman action flick, thematically, in the soundtrack, and even in some characters.
  • Tarantino isn’t losing sleep over the comparison, though: “They’re keeping me pop-culturally relevant,” he said.
  • Visit INSIDER’s homepage for more stories.

The influence of Quentin Tarantino is felt across the entertainment industry.

The iconic director is often referenced in major film and TV franchises, like “The Simpsons,” and even the Marvel Comic Universe.

Sometimes, this means Tarantino’s unmistakable mark is seen in unexpected places.


Read more:
Brad Pitt says Quentin Tarantino – who fires people for using phones on set – doesn’t send emails or texts, just voice recordings

According to Quentin Tarantino, “Kung Fu Panda” – the Dreamworks animated film franchise starring Jack Black – is one of them.

“Frankly,” Tarantino recently told BBC Radio 1’s Film Critic Ali Plumb, “‘Kung Fu Panda’ is just a straight-up parody of ‘Kill Bill.’ In every way!”

“Obviously they saw the script,” he added.

“Cut to Kung Fu Panda 5 and a TV show.”

There do indeed seem to be a number of parallels between the two franchises.

The training montage in “Kung Fu Panda,” released in 2008, bears a remarkable similarity to that in “Kill Bill: Volume 2,” released in 2004.

In “Kill Bill,” the training sequence ends with Pai Mei telling Beatrix (Uma Thurman) that she can’t eat unless she uses her chopsticks.

'Kill Bill: Volume 2' chopsticks sceneMiramaxA scene from ‘Kill Bill: Volume 2.’

Meanwhile, in “Kung Fu Panda,” Master Shifu ends Po’s training session with a chopstick fight over a bowl of dumplings.

Chopsticks scene in 'Kung Fu Panda'20th Century FoxA scene from ‘Kung Fu Panda.’

In the trailer version of the same sequence, “Kung Fu Panda” uses the song “Battle Without Honour or Humanity” by Japanese rock musician Tomoyasu Hotei – a song made famous by “Kill Bill” as O-Ren Ishii’s entrance music.

Furthermore, in the Nickelodeon cartoon series that followed the films, “Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness,” a kung fu master by the name Pai Mei – a name obtained from the Kill Bill character – makes a brief appearance.

You could even argue that the “Furious Five” of “Kung Fu Panda” align with the “Fox Force Five” mentioned by Thurman’s Mia Wallace in “Pulp Fiction,” who are then realised by the characters in the “Kill Bill” films.

The list goes on.

Plumb joked that Tarantino must be wondering where his royalties are, but it doesn’t seem like the director is losing sleep over it.

“They’re doing me a favour, they’re keeping me pop-culturally relevant. Priceless,” he said.

Watch the full interview below:

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.