Kung Faux is an American action comedy television series and audio visual art assemblage created by Mic Neumann that remixes classic kung fu movies with popular music, comic book style editing with video game style special effects, and new storylines with voice-over dubbing from contemporary art stars, hip hop personalities, and pop culture icons.
|Country of origin||United States|
|Running time||26 min|
|Original release||2003 –|
Kung Faux was first created as an art project and movie treatment in 1999 before transforming into a half-hour television series by Kung Faux creator, producer, director and revisionist Michael "Mic" Neumann. The original Kung Faux series first appeared on the websites Popdetail.com, Dubtitled.com and BentoBox.tv as video treatments for a proposed sequential art project and feature length film version of the "Kung Faux" concept, before using its comprehensive Remix formula to transform into an episodic format for television that first aired in 2003 as part of the inaugural launch of the Fuse music television channel in the United States, formerly known as MuchMusic USA, and a subsidiary of Rainbow Media's AMC Networks. From there, Mic Neumann continued to revision, Remix and transform Kung Faux into a distinctive audio visual artwork and brand that has evolved through various forms and channels to over 150+ countries worldwide.
"Kung Faux is many things, but first and foremost, it is hilarious. Irreverent modern concerns collided with serious '70s martial art sensibilities", wrote Conor Herbert in a featured article titled "An Ode to Kung Faux – The Show That Married Martial Arts and Hip-Hop". Kung Faux creator, "revisionist Mic Neumann, has an offering worthy of the postmodernism canon, alongside Jean-Luc Godard's Weekend and Luis Buñuel's Chien Andalou", reported Steve Johnston of The Film Cynics. Rashaun Hall of Billboard considered the mix of vintage kung-fu film footage, voice-overs with rappers, comic book style special effects, and a hip-hop soundtrack to be "a high-flying, hilarious send-up of the kung-fu genre." Evan Serpick, editor of Entertainment Weekly said the first two episodes of Kung Faux "are filled with hysterical and clever infusions". The Orlando Sentinel's Matthew Mark said "Kung Faux is a work of postmodernism that would make Jacques Derrida's head spin." Muzik editor Conor W. McNicholas included Kung Faux in the magazine's Special Edition "Hot 50" issue, calling it "Comedy Gold" and Beth Accomando, the Arts and Culture reporter for KPBS (TV), said Kung Faux is "Hilarious, Fresh and Inspired".
Kung Faux music and voice-over work was performed by hip-hop artists De La Soul, Guru, Masta Ace and Queen Latifah. Other voice-over artists include KAWS, Steve Powers, Crazy Legs, Elephant Man, Afrika Bambaataa, Biz Markie, Jean Grae, Mr. Len, Roc Raida, Sadat X, Ron van Clief and Harold Hunter.
In 2003, the first volume of the Kung Faux collection was released commercially by Dubtiled Entertainment and Tommy Boy Films, along with the introduction of a Special Edition art toy from the Kung Faux line of Action Figgaz titled "Break Boy", which was licensed by Art Asylum and created for their collectable line of Minimates. The Oklahoma Daily proclaimed the Kung Faux debut to be a solid piece of pop culture phenomena and the first DVD to be a work of art. Later that same year, the Kung Faux series broke into the Top Ten List of Spin Magazine's Top 20 chart for ranking notable movers within the news and pop culture.
In 2006, the artist duo known as Gnarls Barkley did a collaborative short film with Kung Faux which aired heavily around the world on the Channel V networks owned by STAR TV and Fox International Channels, fully owned subsidiaries of News Corporation.
In 2010, Kung Faux debuted on Twitter, and the Hollywood filmmaker Brett Ratner, known for such films as The Family Man, Red Dragon, the Rush Hour series and X-Men: The Last Stand, edited an English version of the Bollywood film Kites, headlining Hrithik Roshan and Bárbara Mori, using a comprehensive Remix formula originated by the international Kung Faux television series.
In 2016, Kung Faux audio clips from the television episode titled "Funky Bottoms" were sampled for the Stones Throw Records debut studio album titled Yes Lawd! by the American musician and producer duo consisting of Anderson Paak (stylized as Anderson .Paak) and Knxwledge, professionally known as NxWorries. This critically acclaimed Top Ten release peaked at #3 on the US Billboard charts for Top R&B/Hip Hop Albums in that same year.
- Kipnis, Jill (October 19, 2002). Tommy Boy Branches Out With Film/TV Division. Billboard Magazine. Page 6.
- Matthews, Mark K. (March 28, 2004). The Orlando Sentinel Retrieved August 23, 2012
- KungFauxSite The Official Kung Faux Website. August 19, 2010
- The Film Cynics (August 19, 2008) Retrieved August 23, 2012
- IMDb Summary (Kung Faux) Retrieved August 23, 2012
- Ninja, Please by Staff Picks, Orlando Weekly, July 6, 2006.
- IMDb Biography (Mic Neumann) Retrieved August 23, 2012
- Herbert, Conor (May 8, 2019). "An Ode to 'Kung Faux' — The Show That Married Martial Arts and Hip-Hop" DJBooth.net
- Hall, Rashaun (May 3, 2003). Billboard Reviews. Billboard. Page 46. May 3, 2003.
- Serpick, Evan (May 09, 2003). Style Wars; Kung Faux Vol. 1. Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved August 21, 2010
- McNicolas, Conor W. (August 1, 2003). Special Issue: The Hot 50. Muzik. Cover page and page 38.
- Accomando, Beth (February 9, 2009). Bruce Campbell and Kung Faux. KPBS. Retrieved August 21, 2010.
- IMDb Various Cast and Credits (Kung Faux) Retrieved August 23, 2012
- Figures Database: Art Asylum - Two New Minimates Revealed (2003) Retrieved August 16, 2012
- Kung Faux a Ninja Sweet DVD - The Oklahoma Daily (April 2003), Retrieved June 7, 2019
- Spin Magazine: The Spin 20 (June 2003) Page 52. Retrieved September 17, 2017
- Blue Shift Incorporated: Our Games (2004) Retrieved August 14, 2012
- Artistopia Bio: (Gnarls Barkley) Retrieved August 25, 2012
- Kung Faux on Channel V International (9:00)TV Guide Index Retrieved December 5, 2011
- Diario do Nordeste - GloboTV - Kung Faux on (Multishow) Index Retrieved August 25, 2012
- Kauppalehti Presso (November 3, 2007) Nelonen 12.30 Index. Page 32. Retrieved August 25, 2012
- Kung Faux on Music On! TV: (M-On! Amusement Jam) Archived 2013-02-22 at Archive.today Retrieved on August 25, 2012
- Kung Faux on ABC Network: (Australia) Retrieved August 25, 2012
- Kung Faux on GXT: (Italy) Retrieved August 25, 2012
- Brett Ratner Wants Hrithik Roshan in Hollywood (May 17, 2010) Archived June 20, 2010, at the Wayback Machine Sawf News. Retrieved August 14, 2012
- Sony Max has its tongue wedged firmly in its cheek this May (March 16, 2011) Media Update. Retrieved August 14, 2012
- Who Sampled Kung Faux (NxWorries - Anderson .Paak - Knxwledge) Retrieved November 4, 2018
- NxWorries Chart History (Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums) Retrieved November 5, 2018