CULVER CITY, Calif., Sept. 19 (UPI) -- Hong Kong actor and filmmaker Stephen Chow has signed on to direct the new movie, "The Green Hornet," Columbia Pictures said Friday.
Chow will also play the iconic role of Kato in the film, which is scheduled for release June 25, 2010. He is the award-winning star and director of such films as "Kung Fu Hustle," "CJ7" and "Shaolin Soccer."
Seth Rogen, who co-wrote the screenplay for "The Green Hornet" with Evan Goldberg, is set to play the titular superhero.
The hiring of Chow was announced Friday by Doug Belgrad and Matt Tolmach, presidents of Columbia Pictures.
"When Seth, Evan, and (producer) Neal (Moritz) said they wanted Stephen Chow to be part of 'The Green Hornet,' it was a fantasy," Tolmach said in a statement. "Now that it's happening, it's almost too good to be true. Stephen's been a very important part of the Sony family for many years, so it's truly serendipitous for us to be moving forward with him directing the movie and starring as Kato."
"I'm excited to be taking on 'The Green Hornet' -- obviously, I've been a huge fan of the show since I was a kid," Chow added. "The idea of stepping into Bruce Lee's shoes as Kato is both humbling and thrilling, and to get the chance to direct the project as my American movie debut is simply a dream come true."
Rogen said: "Stephen was always my and Evan's first choice for director and to play Kato. We just hope that he never finds out we're not the Wachowski Brothers."