Netflix has seen some excellent Chinese animated feature films arrive over the past couple of years, and one we can look forward to some time in 2023 is Netflix’s adaptation of the 16th-century Chinese tale of Journey to the West. We’re going to be keeping track of everything you need to know about The Monkey King, including, cast news, production updates, trailers, and the Netflix release date.
The Monkey King is an upcoming animated Netflix Original adventure film directed by Anthony Stacchi, and an adaptation of the classic Chinese tale Journey to the West. The screenplay is written by Steve Bencich and Ron J. Friedman.
It was first announced in 2017 alongside 5 other feature film projects from Pearl Studio. The project was then attached to Netflix in 2021 with the project tentatively scheduled for release in 2023. It was attached to Netflix alongside Mech Cadet and Boons and Curses, the latter of which is no longer moving forward at Netflix.
The primary animation studio behind The Monkey King is Pearl Studio, based in Shanghai, China. They’re a subsidiary of DreamWorks Animation founded in 2012 and have worked on projects like Kung Fu Panda. For Netflix, they worked on Over the Moon.
Netflix Animation is also attached to the project with Star Overseas, Reel FX Animation Studios, and Tangent Animation also attached.
Peilin Chou and Kendra Haaland serve as a producers on the movie with Stephen Chow listed as an executive producer. Toby Chu serves as the composer on the project.
Chow, when the project was first attached to Netflix, said:
“The Monkey King has endured for generations with his unique character and spirit. I’m so excited to be collaborating with Tony, Peilin, and everyone at Netflix to bring this joyful tale to audiences worldwide!”
When is the Netflix release date for The Monkey King?
No exact release date has been announced yet for The Monkey King, although in January 2023, it was confirmed to be among the slate of 2023 releases.
With the movie now rated, we expect it to be released imminently.
It’s unclear whether the movie will receive a limited theatrical release.
What is the plot of The Monkey King?
The Monkey King will follow the beats and is based beloved Chinese story of Sun Wukong, the Monkey King of the tale Journey to the West.
Netflix describes the project as the following:
“The Monkey King is an action-packed family comedy that follows a monkey and his magical fighting Stick as they team up on an epic quest where they must go head to head against gods, demons, dragons, and the greatest enemy of all, Monkey’s own ego!”
On the Netflix page for the movie (where you can set a reminder for when it releases), the description is as follows:
“After the Dragon King steals his staff, the Monkey King sets off on a mission to get it back. But his greatest enemy proves to be his own pride.”
Who are the cast members of The Monkey King?
It looks like The Monkey King will have a talented cast of voice actors that we can’t wait to see in action.
A few familiar faces, and voices will star in the feature, such as B.D Wong, who reprised his role of Dr. Henry Wu in Jurassic World: Camp Cretaceous.
Meanwhile, Stephanie Hsu has previously starred in one Netflix Original in an episode of The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.
Netflix’s family account on May 20th, 2021 highlighted that the movie would feature an all-Asian voice cast.
Below is the full cast of The Monkey King:
- Jimmy O. Yang (Space Force, Patriots Day) as Monkey King
- Stephanie Hsu (Everything Everywhere All At Once, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel) as Mayor’s Wife.
- BD Wong (Jurassic Park) as Buddha
- Jodi Long (The Hot Chick) as Wangman
- Hoon Lee (Warrior) as Jade Emperor
- Jolie Hoang-Rappaport (Watchmen) as Lin
- Andrew Pang (Alaska Daily) as Mayor
- Bowen Yang (High Maintenance) as Dragon King
- Jo Koy as Benbo
- Ron Yuan (Mulan) as Babbo
- James Sie (Stillwater) as Elder Monkey
- Andrew Kishino (Star Wars: The Clone Wars) as Yama
What will be the age rating of The Monkey King?
On March 15th, 2023 the movie was given a PG rating from the MPA with the age rating suggesting “Rated PG for action/violence and brief
On Netflix itself, the movie will carry a TV-Y7 rating.
For more on Netflix’s upcoming slate of animated movies, check out our preview of upcoming titles, including The Magician’s Elephant, Nimona, Leo, Saving Bikini Bottom, and much more.
Are you excited to watch The Monkey King on Netflix? Let us know in the comments below!
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