The CW's 'Kung Fu'
Source: The CW

The CW's 'Kung Fu' Wasn't Filmed Where You Think, but It Still *Literally* Kicks Butt

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Apr. 7 2021, Published 6:24 p.m. ET

The Arrowverse executive Greg Berlanti has a new series coming to the CW, and no one’s surprised, but we are all excited. The newest Berlanti series is Kung Fu, a reboot of a 1972 TV series about a Shaolin monk who travels to the Old West. The new Kung Fu reboot, however, is more of a reimagining that takes place in the modern-day and features a female lead.

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We love that the reboot will feature a female lead, played by Olivia Liang, and that she basically takes the martial arts she learns at a monastery in China to protect her community in San Francisco when she returns to America. With those two very visually distinct settings, where was Kung Fu actually filmed

The CW's 'Kung Fu'
Source: The CW
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The CW’s ‘Kung Fu’ was filmed in British Columbia in Canada.

Considering that most of Kung Fu was filmed during the COVID-19 pandemic, it would have been nearly impossible to film both in San Francisco and China. Not only that, but the production team has a relationship with a studio in Langley, British Columbia. 

Kung Fu filmed a large portion of the scenes on the studio’s lot, and other big CW hits, such as Supergirl and Riverdale, have filmed at that specific Langley lot as well. Other Greg Berlanti CW hits, such as Legends of Tomorrow and Superman & Lois, were also filmed in other areas of British Columbia.

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The CW's 'Kung Fu'
Source: The CW

British Columbia is an ideal filming location for the CW’s ‘Kung Fu.’

Although the Kung Fu reboot production team used their relationship with the studio in Langley for a good part of the filming, they also filmed a bunch of scenes in Vancouver. Vancouver can resemble San Francisco in other ways, especially in the Chinatown area, which is where Olivia’s character, Nicky, lives with her family.

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Someone did catch Kung Fu filming at Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden in Vancouver’s Chinatown, and a fight sequence in the pilot was filmed at East Pender Street. Other people caught the Kung Fu reboot filming at David Lam Park, which is a vast and green park in downtown Vancouver.

Source: Twitter
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This isn’t the first time where a ‘Kung Fu’ reboot was pitched.

Greg Berlanti, one of the executive producers, has actually been kicking around the Kung Fu reboot for a while. In every iteration, the series would be female-led. However, the series had first been optioned with FOX, who ordered a pilot but never got the show off the ground. According to Primetimer, both Riverdale and Black Lightning were originally developed for FOX, but consequently found success on the CW, so Kung Fu is in good hands.

This iteration, written by Christina M. Kim, will take on Nicky Chen as she returns to San Francisco. She dropped out of college to go study Shaolin at a monastery in China and returns to family troubles and disapproval. But Nicky wants to use her martial arts prowess for good to protect her hometown. 

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The CW's 'Kung Fu'
Source: The CW

With Greg Berlanti’s track record and a need for an Asian-American heroine, we’re really hoping Kung Fu dropkicks and continues onwards. Maybe if it does, we’ll see some future scenes filmed on-location in China and San Francisco, but for now, the lush imagery and versatility of British Columbia will do.

Kung Fu premieres at 8 p.m. EST on the CW on April 7. New episodes air Wednesdays.

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