Updated 12:52 AM EST, Sun, Feb 28, 2021

'Kung Fu Panda 3' Release Dates, Cast & Trailer: Movie Delayed for 2016

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The premiere of "Kung Fu Panda 3" has been pushed back to a much later date.

According to Variety, Dreamworks Animation has moved the release of the animated movie to March 18, 2016 from its original December 23, 2015 premiere date. This is to avoid being released the same time as "Star Wars: The Force Awakens," which is expected to dominate the box office when it premieres on December 18, 2015. The two films are expected to attract similar audience and may create quite a competition in the box office.

The new release date for "Kung Fu Panda 3" also means that DreamWorks Animation will also push back "Boss Baby," which is also slated for release in theaters on March 18, 2016, Variety noted.

Entertainment Weekly added that the animation studio is planning to "reconfigure their release schedule after Marvel's announcement of a 10-film release schedule through 2019." Marvel's release will affect DreamWorks Animation's "B.O.O.: Bureau of Otherworldly Operations" and "Trolls," which release dates are sandwiched between "Doctor Strange," "The Avengers: Age of Ultron," and "Ant-Man."

"We continue to look at our schedule here and the competitive marketplace, and we will remain flexible in the release of these movies and the dating of these films," DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg said in October, as quoted by Variety.

"Kung Fu Panda 3" Casting News and Plot Details

Hallels reports that the original actors in the first two "Kung Fu Panda" films will reprise their roles in part three, including Jack Black as the titular character Po, Angelina Jolie as Tigress, Dustin Hoffman as Master Shifu, Jackie Chan as Monkey, Lucy Liu as Viper, David Cross as Crane, James Hong as Mr. Ping, and Seth Rogen as Mantis. The crew will be joined by newcomers Bryan Cranston as the voice behind Po's father, Rebel Wilson of "Pitch Perfect," and Mads Mikkelsen, who portrays the human-flesh eating Hannibal Lecter on the TV show "Hannibal." 

This will be the first time that Mikkelsen will voice an animated character, unlike Cranston and Wilson. The latter was the voice behind Raz in "Ice Age: Continental Drift," while "Breaking Bad's" Cranston voiced the tiger Vitaly in "Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted," according to a report from Cinema Blend.

"Kung Fu Panda 3" will once again be directed by Jennifer Yuh Nelson, with Jonathan Aibel and Glenn Berger writing the screenplay. 20th Century Fox will be the distributor of the film, as noted by another report from Cinema Blend. It will also be co-produced by Oriental DreamWorks based in China.

The third installment will pick up on Po's adventures on the second film as the Chosen One, Hallels reports. Plot rumors say that Po will continue mastering the art of Kung Fu and will be fighting two villains - one supernatural creature and one extremely close to home.

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