Ken Jeong Gets Expanded Role In 'The Hangover Part 3,' But Will It Make For A Better Finale?

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by Edward Davis
July 13, 2012 11:20 AM
6 Comments
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After the post-"Old School" stumbles ("School For Scoundrels" being the most egregious), it was nice to see Todd Phillips land back on his feet in a big way with "The Hangover" and to a lesser degree, the caustic but still enjoyable "Due Date." "The Hangover" of course was more than just a comeback success, the film went supernova and became the highest-grossing R-rated comedy of all time and turned Zach Galifianakis, Ed Helms and Bradley Cooper into big stars that now lead their own movies and TV shows. Phillips himself signed a mint-like deal with Warner Bros. and everyone made out pretty damn well from the Vegas misadventure that took everyone by surprise.

But the goodwill earned by the film was almost immediately tarnished by the release of "The Hangover Part II," a lazy retread of the original film which seemingly xeroxed the same narrative, beat for beat, in an uninspired fashion, only changing the location to Thailand. Sub-parness aside, one of perhaps the predictable elements of the film was turning funny supporting character Mr. Chou, played by Ken Jeong, into a bigger player in the film as sequels are wont to do. Now it looks like Jeong's role may be getting even bigger.

THR reports that while the script details are under wraps -- though it's largely expected to center around rescuing Alan from a mental hospital -- evidently Jeong's character will be even more elemental to the third film. Congratulations? We've warned about turning middle eight (a bridge in music) into full blown songs and about why the middle eight is so special (cause you only hear it once), but Hollywood always knows how to ruin a good thing.

Whatever. What does seem certain is that the formula of "The Hangover," strictly adhered to in both films, is now absolutely played. And hopefully the filmmakers now realize they simply cannot just lose another buddy in another chaotic city, shake and stir, and believe that will satisfy anyone other than Big Gulp audience drones. And yes, that's the fat of the box-office, but we're pretty sure even Phillips thinks they played it too close to the template, as he's suggested part three will flip the script. We can only hope.

But maybe that's just us. Were you satisfied with "The Hangover Part II"? "The Hangover Part III" hasn't shot a foot of film yet, but it's due in theaters on May 23, 2013 with lensing to take place in Tijuana, Los Angeles and Las Vegas.

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6 Comments

  • Jozzy | July 30, 2012 1:35 AMReply

    Hangover 1 and 2 are awesome movies, both movies kept me and my friends very entertained and laughing all the way through. Love that they kept number 2 so similar to number 1. "You don't Fix what ain't broken" and if you do you wind up like most Rock groups that want to "change their sound" Can't Wait for number 3 will be seeing that in theaters for sure. LONG LIVE MR. CHOU

  • Rick | July 16, 2012 10:13 AMReply

    I also saw the "retread" of the formula in Hangover II, but, I was thoroughly entertained in spite of that. The situations they found themselves in were more extreme than in the first movie (loss of a finger, poor Stu's experience with the Bangkok stripper, etc) and it worked for me. I loved it! I do agree tho that a third outing under the same formula would be stretching it. However, if you don't think that reusing the same formula ever works, consider the James Bond movies. They only make slight changes every few years and they have drawn enough box office results to be in business for 50 years!

  • Responding To Alan | July 15, 2012 4:52 AMReply

    Re Alan: How does the timeline negate ANYTHING in the article? The rushed timeline may have contributed to the uninspired & mean spirited retread, but it WAS one nonetheless. Excuses don't make the article any less true or the sequal any better (it was awful).

  • Jozzy | July 30, 2012 1:40 AM

    that's your opinion and I'm sure many other, also any one that felt a naked tranny was just way to over the line (laughing at all of those prudes) Loved Number 1, and Number 2 will love number 3 just cause the same cast is back and this is my opinion. To be quite fair saying a movie is good or bad is like saying which guitar player is the greatest. It's all based on opinions. Unless it just flat out sucked in which case every one agrees lol.

  • Alan | July 14, 2012 3:25 AMReply

    This article is seriously misinformed. The reason for the disappointment of 'Hangover II' is because THERE WAS NO FREAKIN' TIME TO MAKE THE FILM. Phillips went to work on 'Due Date', working on the film for release a year later. And then he had to do 'Hangover II', which he had to complete in less than another year. So it makes sense: Phillips didn't have time to re-develop the story.

  • Tom | July 13, 2012 1:56 PMReply

    I loved Hangover I. I wish I had never seen Hangover II because it's essentially the same damn movie. Unless it gets stellar reviews, I probably won't be checking out III at all.

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