Mortal Kombat Legends: Battle of the Realms will appear in digital and physical storefronts on August 31st. The film is the direct sequel to 2020 The Scorpion’s Revenge. In it, Raiden and his gang of Earthrealm fighters take part in the title tournament to save the empires from Shao Kahn, who appeared in the movie’s first trailer. Actor Matthew Yang King (Riverdale) Voices Kung Lao in the animated film.

ComingSoon editor-in-chief Tyler Treese spoke with Mortal Kombat Legends: Battle of the Realms Star Matthew Yang King on the voice of Kung Lao, the voice of Liu Kang in the video games, and his other dubbing roles.

Tyler Treese: You are a veteran of the Mortal Kombat franchise at this point. What attracted you to playing Kung Lao and what do you think of the character?

Matthew Yang King |: I really like Kung Lao. It’s strange playing Liu Kang in a video game for two years before that. It just goes back and forth and back through again and again Mortal Kombat 11 and then play the other side of it. And I know that my very good friend Sunil Malhotra, who plays Kung Lao in the video game, was kind enough to talk to me about the character and his position. And I had gone to Kung Lao more of a prankster and some kind of weird relief. But when it actually came down to playing the movie and realizing that they were playing a much later Kung Lao, one that was much more noble, one that was much more grounded, that was a much easier shift because it was straight out of the same sense came from Liu Kang. He is a very honorable man.

That friendship with Liu Kang is so important to the character. Can you talk about just bringing that to life in the movie?

It is there. Again, I entered this floor from the opposite perspective when I was in Liu Kang for so long that it was easy to slip into the other shoes because I already know what floor I did or what emotional floor I made of Liu have King’s point of view and the kind of brotherhood they have, the camaraderie, the competition and the brotherhood they had. And since Liu Kang sees Kung Lao as some kind of younger brother, it was very easy to play the Kung Lao character as someone who looks up to this guy but doesn’t want or want competitive character and this guy wants to be the best and up be on the same floor as his older brother.

What’s your background with the show? What was your first Mortal Kombat game?

Mortal Kombat was my first Mortal Kombat Game. Play the video game over and over and over again at a Connecticut arcade. I’ve seen it and played it and I’m a player who goes way back. And when I finally got the chance to play Liu Kang, it was great fun. I knew Liu Kang was originally based in Bruce Lee, and he was kind of an ode to the Bruce Lee character in the game. But it struck me that no one had ever played anything like this, mostly because they hired Caucasian actors, and they often felt so uncomfortable that these Caucasian actors did that. But I really wanted to bring Bruce back and really make an ode to him. Then Kung Lao, he’s going back to showdown in Big problems in Little China. It’s derived from those really, really fun ’80s movies and some great Chinese wu-tang-wuxia. And so it was really, really fun to play a character that draws on some of the movies from my childhood.

Speaking of Liu Kang, in Mortal Kombat 11 he has an interesting arc in which he becomes the god of fire. How exciting was it to be the character in this story?

Yeah, and that was really, really fun and playing the different derivatives of it. You went in and played one branch, and then you had to come back and play the second branch and then come in and play the third, fourth, and fifth. And then everything branches out further than the line. So all of the different trees of dialogue and paths that it could have gone were really nice to play as an actor. And then actually playing as a player who tried to play the Come-On Expert and that absolutely failed made me wonder, “Why is it so hard?” [laughs]

The film really does justice to the franchise and there have been some incredible deaths. You expect this to come, but what was your reaction when you did the voice over hearing and saw some of these deaths for the first time?

I think the quote is “Ahhh!” because some of these deaths are absolutely brutal. I mean, they’re pretty brutal in video game, but there are some here that are just super-duper bloody. My wife had to knock because she couldn’t stand it. We watch the movie together and she said, “Yup. Tipping. “But it was fun because my inner 12-year-old self liked it.

You have now spoken to three Mortal Kombat characters: Liu Kang, Kung Lao, and Fujin. Do you have a favorite to play with?

I love liu kang. He’s my main actor. If we come back with Kung Lao it might be difficult, but if we come back with Kung Lao at some point in the future I would love to play the snappy version of him. It wasn’t just that, because I got to play an Elder God as well as some of the smaller boys. It’s always fun to play random characters in these worlds too. But I’d have to give it to Liu Kang because I got the honor of Bruce and that’s such an iconic figure for most Asian-American kids. It’s just a dream come true.

In Warcraft III, you had a very iconic portrayal of Illidan Stormrage. And it’s so popular with fans. What does that mean for you?

I think this role is wonderful and also a bit of a shame. I am a huge player. I played Warcraft and then played that role [was great]. It was so funny because I was working on it with the voice director and they felt uncomfortable because they said, “This is a moment and I don’t know if you get this, but it’s like a Captain Needa and Vader in Star Wars ”and I think:“ Yes, I understand. Let’s go. “It was easy. So it became a really wonderful shortcut to playing Illidan.

They came back to me to play Illidan World of Warcraft. SAG hadn’t signed video games yet, and they really jumped in my face when it came to playing Warcraft originally. So I had to refuse to play Illidan for World of Warcraft. And so it was just this big disappointment that I didn’t make it and it annoys me. I’ve always wanted to go back and play Illidan again in some of the later stuff, or do him in a movie or something like that, because he’s just one of my favorite characters, because he’s just so cool.

You also played Sumaru in Naruto and he has such a nice little arc of characters. Do you have memories of that voice-over?

So much fun playing a younger character. I was in my thirties when I played this. These rolls have such a wonderful sweetness, especially with Sumaru. It was the relationship with the mother that was really, really fun. And there are levels of depth that they play in that are really wonderful. Although I also learned the rules for dubbing Japanese cartoons and realized that they have a different breathing pattern than western animation. They always have something like, “If a guy is surprised, you always leave, [makes sharp inhalation noise]. If you are surprised by a girl she leaves [makes different sharp inhalation noise]“It’s always the same breathing pattern. It’s really cute. This is a kind of Japanese animated breathing pattern. And this is how it is done.

You only did it yesterday. What was it like working on a Ghibli movie?

That was really, really wonderful. It’s just so beautiful and one of the more subtle Ghibli films. But everything that borders on Miyazaki just makes you super excited, especially when you’re working alongside Daisy Ridley. Playing the dad in that role was really interesting because there is that moment when he walks away and he’s away from some kind of non-entity, the guy behind the newspaper who was in charge. And then in that one moment he gets mad at his kid and then somehow had to explain the cultural moment why she came in with shoes and walked in shoes and he goes away and hits her.

They explained it to me, so to speak, and said, “That’s why he’s so excited here.” And then I had to think about it because it doesn’t make sense for him to blow back so much. And I went back and thought about it and said, “Wait a second. That’s 1981, I think when she looks back. So that’s in the 1960s when he’s with his daughter, which means he would have been in her twenties in the 1940s. “And I said,” Oh, he’s a war veteran and has PTSD. ” And so he doesn’t want to bother with everything he has to do with his daughters, because everything they talk about is frivolous.

And then when they do things that break tradition and break its seriousness, he has one thing that he emotionally snaps and snaps at. And that’s why he does it. And I brought that up with the director and he was stunned because he had never thought about it from that point of view of this character. He only based it on people in his real life, just from a point of view of how they behaved, not where it came from. And they wrote me a really wonderful email afterward saying that this gave them a wonderful insight into the character and that was a really, really wonderful moment for that character.

In Death Stranding, you voiced Thomas Sutherland and his role model is Edgar Wright. How cool was it to be part of a Kojima project and how strange was it to voice Edgar Wright?

Well, Kojima projects are weird in general. The guy only has one act on his act on his act. I didn’t know at the time that it was going to be. I was spoken to in the dark. But then when it found out that it was, it was pretty strange. It was pretty strange.

You also played Ayabe in Judgment who had a great character arc. How was the game?

This is great because you can work with Keith Arem at PCB. Keith is a force to be reckoned with and a great director when it comes to these things. The fact that he started out in a punk band just makes it funnier, and then you come in and do a project like this with wonderful actors like Greg Chun. It’s easy to play, and then everything feels like an old Japanese chanbara, especially now that the graphics keep getting better. Ayabe is a wonderful ball of slime. I just love being able to go beyond what is given to many Asian Americans as the roles we play on television. So when I really get around to stretching and playing characters in these video games that I don’t see myself and on American popular television, it just makes me super happy.

You have to play Atom in Injustice 2, another NetherRealm property. Who would win in a fight: Atom or Kung Lao?

[laughs] I have to give it to Atom because of its superpowers. The fact that it can jump in someone’s ear, but Atom is also the reason I played Kung Lao so I can’t complain because the work I did with Atom actually got Warner Bros Kang’s attention , That’s why I knew the world so well, that’s why I became Kung Lao. For me, Atom is also the beginning of the ladder to play Kung Lao, so to speak, but I still have to give it to him as the winner of this fight.