Kung Fury is a ridiculously over-the-top short film that became an instant cult classic, racking up over 32 million views on YouTube since it debuted in 2015. And according to The Hollywood Reporter, there’s now going to be a feature-length sequel, Kung Fury 2, with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Michael Fassbender signed on as co-stars. It will go into production at the end of July, primarily filming in Bulgaria and Germany.
Created by (and starring) Swedish filmmaker David Sandberg (not to be confused with Shazam!‘s David F. Sandberg), the original Kung Fury pays tribute to cheesy 1980s action flicks and included a cameo by David Hasselhoff as the voice of vehicle navigation system Hoff 9000. It’s the story of a renegade Miami police detective with kung fu superpowers who goes back in time to take out Hitler (aka “Kung Führer”). Along the way, Kung Fury (yup, that’s his name) gets a little help from Thor, a couple of Viking babes, a computer whiz who can transform into a robot, and Triceracop (a man with the head of a triceratops). Together, they form a fighting force dubbed the Thundercops. What’s not to love?
Sandberg wrote the script and shot a trailer with friends to launch a Kickstarter campaign to complete the original short. He ended up raising $ 630,000 and somehow cobbled together Kung Fury. It was shot in Sweden and used stock footage (for the giant wolf ridden by Viking babe Katana), miniature models, and even included a short animated “heaven” sequence. It debuted at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival, and even though it didn’t win any prizes, it proved an instant favorite among critics.
As for the sequel, per The Hollywood Reporter:
The action is set in 1985, the best year ever. Miami is kept safe under the watchful eye of Kung Fury, the greatest damn cop of all time. His Thundercops are the ultimate police force assembled from across history to defeat the villainous Kung Führer, Adolf Hitler. But after the tragic death of one of their members causes the group to disband, a mysterious villain emerges from the shadows to aid in the Führer’s quest to attain the ultimate weapon. Kung Fury must travel through space and time to save his friends, defend the prestigious Miami Kung Fu Academy, and defeat evil once and for all.
For all those who wondered what Sandberg could accomplish with a decent budget, it looks like we’re about to find out.