You never know quite what to expect from a Jackie Chan movie, but you do know that the action icon will bring every shred of his movie star charisma. And for his next film, he’s borrowing the meta instincts of Nicolas Cage and playing a version of himself.
Panda Plan, in which Jackie Chan plays an international action star, is currently being shopped to potential distributors at the American Film Market, according to The Hollywood Reporter. It’s one of Chan’s most fascinating new movies in years and seems to sit in the same arena as Cage’s 2022 oddity The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent.
That movie followed Cage as a crisis-hit version of himself, who attempts to make some easy cash by attending a rich superfan’s birthday as the guest of honor. Inevitably, it went awry and led to a manic and very enjoyable journey through the best movies of his career, as we wrote in our five-star Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent review.
As for Chan, Panda Plan doesn’t appear to be quite as chaotic, but does allow the Hong Kong cinema legend to get self-referential as a version of himself. He’s hired in the movie to help with a rescue mission to bring a rare panda cub home after mercenaries kidnap the baby on behalf of a Middle Eastern tycoon.
The plot summary from Mandarin Motion Pictures then promises a “thrilling and hilarious panda defense battle”, which sounds very much like vintage Jackie Chan to us.
It has been a good year for Chan, who secured a Netflix hit with Hidden Strike, in which he starred alongside John Cena. He also did tremendous work as the voice of Splinter in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem, and we singled him out as a “definite highlight” in our Mutant Mayhem review.
When you’ve done everything there is to do in the twin worlds of the best action movies and the best comedy movies, there’s little else to do but have a good laugh at yourself – while punching people in the face, of course.
We’ll be keeping a keen eye open for Panda Plan. The promise of Jackie Chan getting self-referential alongside an adorable baby panda is everything we need to hear.
For more of the star’s great career, check out our list of the best Jackie Chan movies. You can also find out why Jackie Chan pretended to be hurt during a scene with Bruce Lee, and look ahead to upcoming action with our guide to Deadpool 3.