Don Cheadle Didn't Catch Kendrick Lamar's "Kung Fu Kenny" Reference

“I didn’t know that until the next day. He got that from my character in ‘Rush Hour 2.’”

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Kendrick Lamar referred to himself as “Kung Fu Kenny” in his “DNA.” video, referencing Don Cheadle‘s character in the 2001 movie Rush Hour 2 starring Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker. In an interview with Pitchfork, Don revealed that he wasn’t aware of that “Kung Fu Kenny” was based off of his Rush Hour 2 character. He shares:

“I didn’t know that until the next day. He got that from my character in Rush Hour 2. He was like, ‘Duh!’ He texted me like, ‘Dude are you serious? You didn’t know that?’ […] I did not put it together. Then I went to Coachella and saw him perform, and I saw the video before the thing and still didn’t figure it out. And then I went on Twitter and someone had randomly tweeted, ‘Don Cheadle is the original Kung Fu Kenny.’ I went, ‘Wait a minute, I did play a character named Kenny who did kung fu and spoke Chinese.’”

Don Cheadle also spoke about how he did not have much time to prepare for his role in the video, as Kendrick only contacted him a few days before filming started.

“I was like, ‘Uh OK, you know you’re like the best rapper in the world, so what are you talking about.’ He sent me the lyrics and was like, ‘You just have to get this much of it down,”’which was like half of it [laughs]. I was like, ‘Are you gonna have a teleprompter?’ And he said, ‘No, it’s gonna be fine.’”

Read the full interview via Pitchfork.

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Nabil Elderkin

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