LOS ANGELES, CA, AUGUST 10, 2011 - Eddie Murphy will give voice to the animated lead character in Alcon Entertainment's live action/animated big screen adaptation of the of the 1970s Hanna-Barbera animated TV series HONG KONG PHOOEY, it was announced by Alcon co-founders and co-CEO's Broderick Johnson and Andrew Kosove.
In addition to voicing the character of Donkey in the box-office hit "Shrek" franchise, Murphy was also the voice of Mushu, the Dragon, in the successful animated epic "Mulan."
Murphy will next be seen in the comedies "Tower Heist," co-starring Ben Stiller from Universal Studios and "A Thousand Words," from DreamWorks. Alex Zamm ("Dr. Dolittle: Million Dollar Mutts," "Tooth Fairy 2") will direct.
Kosove and Johnson will produce with Jay Stern and Brett Ratner. Steven P. Wegner will executive produce.
State Johnson and Kosove: "We could not be happier that Eddie Murphy will star as Phooey. There is no overstating his contributions to cinema, and to such enduring stars of family entertainments such as 'Shrek' and 'Dr. Doolittle.' We look forward to watching him re-imagine yet another classic character."
Based on the 70's cult classic Hanna Barbera animated TV series, a mild-mannered dog named PENRY (Murphy) stumbles into a mystic ceremony and is accidentally granted mystic powers, including the ability to walk, talk, and do kung fu. Under the tutelage of his kung fu master, Penry dons a costume and becomes Hong Kong Phooey, and with the help of his trusting sidekick Spot the cat cleans up a rogues gallery of wacky criminals.
Murphy is represented by Adam Venit at WME, and Skip Brittenham and Matt Johnson at Ziffren Brittenham. Alcon's in house counsel David Fierson negotiated on behalf of the Company.
Alcon Entertainment co-founders and co-CEO's Andrew Kosove and Broderick Johnson founded the Company in 1997 with financial backing from Frederick W. Smith, the Founder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of FedEx. Alcon, which is named after a mythological archer and ally of Hercules, has financed, and/or co-financed/produced over 19 films, including "My Dog Skip," "Dude, Where's My Car?", "Insomnia," "Racing Stripes," the Academy Award nominated Best Picture "The Blind Side," which earned Sandra Bullock a Best Actress Oscar; "The Book of Eli," starring Denzel Washington and Gary Oldman; "Insomnia," starring Al Pacino, Robin Williams, and Hilary Swank and directed by Chris Nolan; "The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants," and "P.S. I Love You," starring Hilary Swank, among many others. The Company's most recent release was "Something Borrowed," based on New York Times bestselling author Emily Giffin's book, starring Kate Hudson, Ginnifer Goodwin and John Krasinski. Alcon recently completed "Dolphin Tale," a 3-D family film starring Morgan Freeman, Harry Connick Jr., Ashley Judd and Kris Kristofferson, scheduled for release on September 23, 2011. "Joyful Noise," a music driven comedy starring Queen Latifah and Dolly Parton, has also wrapped production and slated for release January 13, 2012. All three films will be released via its output deal with Warner Bros.