Kung Fu Panda Wiki
Kung Fu Panda Wiki

Fly back there and tell them... the real Dragon Warrior is coming home.
  —Tai Lung to Zeng, Kung Fu Panda  

Tai Lung is the main antagonist of Kung Fu Panda. He was the adoptive son and former student of Shifu, as well as a powerful master of the Leopard Style of kung fu.

Trained by Shifu at the Jade Palace, Tai Lung was raised under the impression that he was to become the Dragon Warrior. However, after he was denied the title by Oogway, Tai Lung revealed his true dark nature by rampaging the Valley, resulting in his twenty-year incarceration. After breaking out of prison, he sought to claim the Dragon Scroll and take his place as the Dragon Warrior once again. However, despite being a warrior of great skill, strength, and determination, Tai Lung finally met his match when he was defeated by Po, the true Dragon Warrior.


Early years

Shifu found him as a cub, and raised him as his son. And when the boy showed talent in kung fu, Shifu trained him.
Tigress narrating to Po, Kung Fu Panda

Infant Tai Lung being discovered by Shifu

Tai Lung was found by Shifu as an infant cub, wrapped in purple swaddling cloth and left at the threshold of the palace gates. Moved with compassion, Shifu decided to adopt the cub and raise him as his own, bestowing on him the name "Tai Lung" (meaning "Great Dragon")[11] in the hopes that he would become the Dragon Warrior.

Tai Lung training as a cub

As a child, Tai Lung showed a natural talent in the art of kung fu, and it became apparent that the cub was a prodigy. Shifu lovingly trained him, becoming even more convinced that this was a sign that Tai Lung was the Dragon Warrior foretold of in legend.

The betrayal

[Shifu] believed in him. He said he was destined for greatness. It was never enough for Tai Lung; he wanted the Dragon Scroll. But Oogway saw darkness in his heart, and refused.
Tigress narrating to Po, Kung Fu Panda

Over time, Tai Lung became proud and overly confident in his abilities, having mastered Leopard Style kung fu and advanced techniques such as nerve attacks, as well as all one-thousand scrolls of kung fu. Despite all his accomplishments, Tai Lung still sought the power of the Dragon Scroll and firmly believed he was the Dragon Warrior. It was this overwhelming pride and lust for power that alerted Oogway of the darkness in Tai Lung's heart. He refused him the title, surprising and disappointing both Shifu and Tai Lung, and Tai Lung looked to his master and father-figure for support, only to be further dismayed when Shifu did nothing to object to Oogway's decision.

Tai Lung rampaging through the Valley

Confused and outraged, Tai Lung laid waste to the Valley, cutting a swath of destruction in his fury before charging back to the Jade Palace to try and take the Dragon Scroll by force. Shifu charged to stop the snow leopard with a direct attack, but hesitated, unwilling to strike a lethal blow to the one he still considered his son. Still furious that Shifu had let Oogway's decision stand, Tai Lung did not hesitate to knock Shifu aside, shattering his hip before he leaped for the scroll. He was halted in midair by Oogway, who jabbed multiple pressure points in Tai Lung's chest, blocking his chi and knocking him out as Shifu watched in horror as the warrior he'd raised and trained fell before him.

Tai Lung after having his chi blocked by Oogway

There was nothing else to do but prevent such devastation from happening again. Shifu bowed to Oogway's wishes and helped oversee the construction of the ominously impressive Chorh-Gom Prison, located in the frigid outskirts of Mongolia. Carved right out of the mountain, the prison was made especially for Tai Lung—filled with many walkways and traps, with only one way in and out for the entire prison. In the deepest part of the prison, Tai Lung was chained and fitted with a restraining tortoise shell, with various acupuncture needles in crucial places along his back, keeping his chi blocked, interfering with his breathing to the minimum and making him almost fully immobile.

Leaving him under the supervision of Commander Vachir and the Anvil of Heaven, Shifu and Oogway parted ways from Tai Lung, leaving him in prison as punishment for his crimes against the citizens of the Valley of Peace.[1]

In Kung Fu Panda

The prison break

Tai Lung awakening in Chorh-Gom Prison

Twenty years later, Tai Lung's rage had only intensified. One fateful day, a messenger goose named Zeng arrived at Chorh-Gom Prison, carrying a message from Shifu to Commander Vachir: Orders to double the guards and tighten security due to a vision Oogway had of Tai Lung returning to the Valley of Peace.

Commander Vachir only boasted he had everything under control and that escape from Chorh-Gom was impossible. He showed off how the mighty snow leopard was "completely immobilized," going so far as to stomp on Tai Lung's tail and tease him with the information that Oogway was going to finally choose the Dragon Warrior and that it would not be Tai Lung. The cocky Rhino Commander stepped on his tail to add salt to injury and all Tai Lung could do was be still. Leaving him, Vachir and Zeng were unaware of the molted feathers knocked loose from Zeng when Vachir had slapped him on the back and, once they had left, Tai Lung quietly swept up one feather with his unrestrained tail to pick the intricate lock and free himself from his restraints.

Tai Lung breaking out of prison

With the needles gone, Tai Lung moved and efficiently breathed for the first time in two decades and broke the tortoise shell. Once freed, Tai Lung was quickly spotted by the Anvil of Heaven, who scrambled to contain him with everything they had. The eight-point acupressure cuffs attached to the boulders still rendered his arms limited, until he managed to use on of the cross bow arrows to destroy once of them. He then simply cracked the other and parried and reshot another arrow. Realising he could use them to reach the elevator, Tai Lung threw and kicked four arrows onto the mountain wall and used to fifth to leap onto them. By swinging from one to another, he managed to grab onto the elevator an inch before hundreds of arrows descended. Using it he got higher and used the chain to repel onto the higher floors. Driven by his insatiable fury, Tai Lung unleashed his kung fu mastery and proceeded to brutally decimate the guards as he quickly made his way up the levels, overpowering the rhinos both in strength, agility and skill. The battle was climaxing in a standoff at the bridge at the door level.

In a last attempt to outsmart Tai Lung, Vachir ordered the bridge to be destroyed by setting off explosives attached to the roof of the prison, making falling chunks of rock the size of boulders smash into the walkway Tai Lung was standing on. Thinking quickly, Tai Lung rapidly leaped from rock to falling rock, finally reaching the last bundle of explosives that had yet to be set off—and tossed it among the guards as it exploded, blasting open the heavy doors and finishing off Commander Vachir and the remaining guards.

Tai Lung speaking to Zeng after the escape

Grabbing Zeng by the neck outside, Tai Lung politely told him to fly back to the Jade Palace with a message of his own: "The real Dragon Warrior is coming home." After letting Zeng go, he set out to return to the Jade Palace, bent on revenge and gaining the power of the Dragon Scroll he had been denied long ago.

Battle against the Furious Five

Tai Lung fighting Tigress at the Thread of Hope

Traveling across China at top speed, Tai Lung came to the Thread of Hope, a rope bridge that served as the only passage through the mountains. There, he was confronted by the Furious Five, whom he knew to be Shifu's students (and who had left to stop Tai Lung on their own after hearing of his escape).

After a brief attack in which he was deflected by Tigress, the bridge was cut and then held by the rest of the Furious Five as Tai Lung casually demanded to know where the Dragon Warrior was and laughed as a unbalanced Tigress reposed and implied that it was her. Tai Lung had heard rumors of the Dragon Warrior's appearance that he "fell from the sky on a ball of fire" and was "a warrior, unlike anything the world has ever seen." Monkey unintentionally let slip that the identity of the Dragon Warrior was named Po and an intrigued Tai Lung declared he would finally have a worthy opponent for a legendary battle.

Tai Lung fighting the other members of the Furious Five

This provoked Tigress, who took him on, however, as the fight progressed she began to struggle against her more experienced predecessor, especially once Tai Lung utilised his superior strength, balance and speed to kick her through half of the wooden bridge and then twist the ropes around the her neck, effectively strangling her. Soon Tigress was rescued by Crane and joined by other members of the Furious Five until only Mantis was left to support the bridge. One-on-one they didn’t stand long against him, however, Tai Lung was overwhelmed by the team's combined skill and teamwork for a moment, after Mantis flung the ropes to unbalance the charging snow leopard. The Five then wrapped him in rope from the remains of the rest of the bridge and with the aid of Crane, Tigress pushed the subdued enemy and left to fall to the mist below. However, the Furious Five's victory was short-lived as Tai Lung managed to use what was left of the now-destroyed rope bridge to seamlessly swing up and break free, landing behind the startled team.

He complimented them on what they had learned from Shifu, fairly amazed by their efforts, but stated he did not teach them everything and proved that their attempt was futile. The snow leopard utilized his nerve attack technique, blocking everyone's chi except for Crane, who was left to transport the other four back to the Jade Palace as a warning: Tai Lung could defeat the five strongest warriors in the land and anyone else who might oppose him, including "Po".

Battle against Shifu

Tai Lung: “I have come home, Master.
Shifu: “This is no longer your home. And I am no longer your master.
Tai Lung: “Oh yes, you have a new favorite. So where is this Po? [chuckles] Did I scare him off?
Shifu: “This battle is between you and me.
Tai Lung: “So, that is how it's going to be...
Shifu: “That is how it must be.

Tai Lung battling Shifu

By the time Tai Lung finally arrived at the Jade Palace, the whole Valley had been evacuated on Shifu's orders, leaving only the master himself to confront Tai Lung at the palace steps. Tai Lung told Shifu he has come home and respectfully calls him "Master." Shifu's reception of his son and a one-time student was cautious and cold as he tells him the Jade Palace is no longer his home and that he is no longer his master, bluntly making it clear they were now enemies. Tai Lung asks Shifu where Po is and if he scared him off. Shifu challenges Tai Lung to a battle; when he asks if that is how it is going to be, Shifu retorts that that is how it must be as he prepares to engage in battle. Enraged, Tai Lung leaped into the air and cracked the Jade Palace steps and then lifted a giant rock and kicked it against Shifu. He used this as a mere distraction and as Shifu cracked the boulder with an elegant move, Tai Lung puched his enemy through the Palace doors. Finally unleashing his wounded pride felt at his original "rejection", Tai Lung verbalized his contempt and anger for how his master did "nothing" when he was denied his "destiny". The red panda retorded that he merely obeyed his own master and that it wasn't his fault that his student wasn't the Dragon Warrior. This only angered Tai Lung further, as he kicked and threw several objects which the elder kung fu master blocked with ease. Now that Oogway was dead, Shifu and his failed student were the strongest masters of Kung fu and battled each other at even terms for most of the duel. However, with Shifu refusing to give the scroll, Tai Lung’s rage only fuelled him. He then reached the alter of Oogway and studied his staff, well aware of his recent passing. For a brief moment, he regarded the memory of the one that denied him his “rightful” position as Dragon Warrior, seeing mostly an old tortoise that turned his father figure and proclaimed him unworthy of his right. Thus, he picked the staff up, knowing this would aggravate Shifu to become offensive rather than his mostly defensive style. After a short exchange, Tai Lung managed to catch Shifu mid-jump and began to strangle his former master with Oogway’s staff. Shifu’s continious refusal of the scroll only angered Tai Lung to push harder. Eventually the staff broke, much to Shifu’s sadness. By this point, the elder Kung fu master began to feel the raw power of his younger opponent catch up with his age. Therefore, when he blocked a heavy kick from Tai Lung, Shifu realized it was only a matter of time. He tried to create some space between them and jumped from column to column, but was followed swiftly by the snow leopard. Tai Lung then caught Shifu and pushed him through the roof where they exchanged blows mid-air with lightning clashing above them. Shifu then held Tai Lung’s arm on his back and locked him as they descended down. However, Tai Lung used his other elbow to pummel Shifu’s face and grabbed him, making his foster father take the blow of falling through the roof. He then kicked Shifu into a column and ran towards him, paws caught with the blue flames of a nearby torch. By this point, Shifu had been severely beaten and exhausted much of his stamina. The fight reached its climax when Tai Lung began to brutally beat his tired master both physically and mentally. While the stressed master tried to desperately block and parry the ferocious hits of Tai Lung’s burning paws, he had to simultaneously endure hearing how his foster son only desired to make his foster father proud. The shouted accusations on top of demanding to be told how proud Shifu was of him as they fought, coupled with the fire attacks eventually becoming too fast and feral (overwhelmingly maiming him even further), and being savagely punched devastated him. Finally Tai Lung’s rage and attacks peaked, launching Shifu to the pool after a beastly strike.

Tai Lung suffocating Shifu

It was with the last disabling blow that Shifu finally cracked, telling Tai Lung he had always been proud of him, so much that his pride had blinded him to what Tai Lung was becoming and what he had unwittingly turned him into. Shifu offered a sincere and heartfelt apology and Tai Lung's gaze softened with hesitation, but he ultimately hardened his heart, proclaiming that he wasn't after an apology, he still wanted "his" scroll. Despite all of the hate, some small part of Tai Lung still cared for his master, however, his ambitious lust for power overcame what little compassion his heart still had. Looking up, he saw that the Dragon Scroll was missing. Furious, he smashed Shifu to the floor and began to tighten his grip around his neck. He almost killed Shifu, who told him he would never get the scroll but was interrupted by a shout from the entrance coming from an out-of-breath Po holding the Dragon Scroll, who claimed to be the Dragon Warrior.

Battle and defeat against Po

Tai Lung: “ [to Po] You? [He turns to Shifu and chuckles.] Him? He's a panda! [to Po] You're a panda! What are you gonna do, big guy? Sit on me?! [chuckles] 
Po: “Don't tempt me. [He briefly laughs.] Now, I'm gonna use this! [He takes out the Dragon Scroll.] Ha ha! You want it? Come and get it.
—Before Po and Tai Lung's fight, Kung Fu Panda

Tai Lung battling Po for possession of the Dragon Scroll

Incredulous, Tai Lung tossed Shifu aside, charging when Po challenged him to "come and get it". Tai Lung wasted no time and punched the Dragon Warrior away and grabbed the scroll. Much to his surprise, Po bounced back and redirected his power back. He then ran and catches the fleeing panda, kneeing him to the roof of the ... Knocking him down the thousand steps, they fell and exchanged hits with Tai Lung hitting most of the steps and being subjugated to Po’s weight on top of his face. He fought Po for possession of the Dragon Scroll, only to be outsmarted and outdone at every turn in a series of game-like obstacles. For while he outmatched the fat warrior, though he was cut off-guard by all of the Dragon Warrior’s ingenuity. When the scroll landed on the top of the roof, Tai Lung became frightened as he saw how athletic Po was and his proximity to it. Strongly kicking the building, it began to collapse as he climbed after the Dragon Scroll, only to receive several roof tiles to his face. But Tai Lung gained the upper hand when he slammed Po into the ground with a mid-air kick and then used the falling momentum and all of his strength to make a burst of dust and rock, effectively creating a crater. Momentarily defeating and stunning Po long enough, allowed Tai Lung to grab the scroll and open it at long last—only to find that it was blank. As the panda coughed and struggled to his feet, Po explained to him that there was no special power in the scroll itself, or "secret ingredient"; "It's just you."

Po using the Wuxi Finger Hold on a beaten Tai Lung

Angered and unable to comprehend the scroll's lesson, Tai Lung tried to defeat Po once and for all. However, the chi-blocking punches and jabs only tickled Po in the process, due to his more unclear nerve pressures points. After being launched into the noodle shop after Po’s stomach absorbed and redirected it. Once the panda found new-found powers he was again bested in combat by the panda, though it should be mentioned that he fought more angrily and uncontrolled than usual, even biting his own tail. After being met with equal strength and skill, Tai Lung began to lose mind as this fat, inexperienced panda was defeating him. Eventually, he fell from a great height, making a snow leopard-shaped hole in the crater. Making one last futile attempt to battle, a weakened Tai Lung was finally caught in the Wuxi Finger Hold by Po. He attempted to call him out by stating that Shifu wouldn't have taught him such a move, but became horrified when Po told him that he simply figured it out himself. Po then performed the move, which sent him to the Spirit Realm.

In Kung Fu Panda Holiday

Tai Lung in Mr. Ping's nightmare in Kung Fu Panda Holiday

Tai Lung appeared at the beginning of the special as part of Mr. Ping's nightmare, where he appeared giant-sized and battled Po, who remarked that he thought Tai Lung was dead before being cut off with Tai Lung slamming his paw on him. After a brief fight, Tai Lung was defeated once again when Po kicked him and sent him flying off into the horizon, exploding into a portal-like light on impact.

In Legendary Warriors

The canonicity of this section is questionable.
Information in this section may conflict with previously established canon.

Tai Lung out for revenge

It was shown that Tai Lung had survived his battle with Po. To enact his plan for revenge, he gathered multiple clans and gangs, including the Wu Sisters, to capture enough villagers so that their energy can power his new weapon, which would give him super strength. Po, Tigress, Shifu, and Monkey managed to defeat Tai Lung and his allies.

In Legends of Awesomeness

The canonicity of this section is questionable.
Information in this section may conflict with previously established canon.

Tai Lung featured in a flashback of his escape from Chorh-Gom Prison

Though Tai Lung makes no live appearance in the series, he is shown in flashbacks and is mentioned on more than one occasion:

In "Rhino's Revenge", Tai Lung made a brief cameo during Hundun's flashback of the snow leopard's escape from Chorh-Gom Prison.

At the end of "The Kung Fu Kid", it was revealed that Peng (a kung fu prodigy) was Tai Lung's nephew and has been searching everywhere for him, much to Po's shock and horror.

Po disguised in the physical likeness of Tai Lung

In "Master and the Panda," Peng ended up learning the truth about what had happened to Tai Lung and attacked Po, who tried to tell Peng that his uncle was a villain, but Peng calls him a liar. Later, Peng ended up corrupted by the Gong Lu Medallion and fought Po in a battle that mirrored Po’s fight with Tai Lung. Po later used a shift stone to assume the form of Tai Lung to convince Peng to remove the Gong Lu Medallion and succeeded, Peng declaring he is not like his uncle and does not want to be.

In Kung Fu Panda 2

While not appearing in the sequel, Tai Lung was briefly mentioned when Po was put in eight-point acupressure cuffs, Po pointing out they the same type of cuffs had once held Tai Lung. He was also seen briefly in Po's memories during his flashback when they were battling at the end of the first film.

In Kung Fu Panda 3

Though Tai Lung has no corporeal presence in the film, his fate is alluded to, as the Wuxi Finger Hold plays a major part in the film's events. Earlier in the film, Po is shown playing with his action figures while taking a bath, one of which is an action figure of Tai Lung.

It was also revealed that mortals who have the hold used on them are sent to the Spirit Realm, and additionally, Tai Lung can be seen as one of Kai's amulets around his waist, representing the kung fu masters in the Spirit Realm that had their chi taken by Kai.


So that is his name. Po... Finally, a worthy opponent. Our battle will be legendary!
—Tai Lung before battling the Furious Five, Kung Fu Panda

Young Tai Lung training with Shifu

As an adult, Tai Lung was shown to be dark, dangerous, and arrogant. However, in the past when he was raised and trained by Shifu, he seemed to be a happy, energetic cub with much talent and dedication to the arts of kung fu and was viewed as a kung fu prodigy in the eyes of his loving father and master. Over the years, Tai Lung grew to into a strong and fierce warrior, having achieved much as a student, even mastering all one thousand scrolls of kung fu.

However, his ultimate goal was to be the Dragon Warrior and be handed the Dragon Scroll, which he firmly believed was his destiny. However, at the moment when Shifu presented him to Oogway, the old master indicated Tai Lung was not the one, much to their shock. Expecting Shifu to speak for him on his behalf, he received an emotional blow when his master made no attempt to protest and Tai Lung saw this as an act of betrayal. It was this double rejection that revealed the darkness in Tai Lung's heart, expressed in pure rage as he attacked and ravaged the Valley of Peace and later ruthlessly struck Shifu aside when he tried to stop him from taking the Dragon Scroll by force.

Tai Lung in adulthood

Tai Lung's seething rage and fury did not fade, even after spending twenty years in prison. However, though he was shown to be patronizing and brutal to anyone standing between him and the Dragon Scroll, it is possible he had no intent to hurt anyone as he was never shown to take a life (though he did came close to kill Shifu by strangling him). He was also revealed to have worked hard in everything he did to make Shifu proud and was shown to hesitant after hearing Shifu's sincere apology to him, though he hardened his heart as he still wanted the Dragon Scroll. Another example of his vulnerable side was also shown when Tai Lung expressed clear fear and desperation after finally being beaten by Po.

Overall, Tai Lung is a portrait of someone whose pride and ambitions went too far, driving him to violently lash out and try to take what was not his, harming anyone who stood in his way, including the very person whom he wanted to please in the first place. His eventual downfall came from his denial and his underestimation of Po, as well as his failure to accept that the secret to true power simply comes from within.

Fighting style

The traditional Leopard Style relies on the enormous upper body strength—the fighter crouches, remaining low to the ground. Tai Lung used brute strength, speed, and agility, all ruled by a cunning mind—a master of all styles, he could pinpoint and exploit weakness while facing many opponents. ...[6]

A brief list of Tai Lung's fighting styles

Tai Lung is an intimidating fighter who is willing to fight to the extreme, and is both resourceful and unpredictable, having mastered various styles of kung fu.[6] Next to Oogway, Tai Lung is virtually the most skilled and dangerous Kung Fu Master alive, being able to best all members of the Furious Five and even his former master Shifu. Due to his physiology and lifetime of training, Tai Lung also possesses immense physical strength and was able to punch and tear his way through numerous armored opponents, as well as lift rocks weighing at least multi-tens ton each and many other barriers. He was also noted to be a kung fu prodigy from childhood, and the first student of the Jade Palace to master all one-thousand scrolls of kung fu.

If there is one word to describe Tai Lung physical abilities, the word would be 'outstanding'. Every inch of Tai Lung's body is very well trained. This outstanding physical abilities was shown when he was fighting the Furious Five, when he was able to use either only a single leg or a single arm to hang his whole body on the bridge. He also possess incredible balance and agility, evinced in his casual attidtude when battling Tigress atop the bridge, where the female Kung Fu master stuggled to maintain her stance and had to reajust, while Tai Lung required no effort. Copled with his speed, experience, skill and exemplar physiology, the dreaded Snow Leopard managed to defeat a 1000 rhino soldiers, while quickly using his eviornment as an advantage.

Like Shifu, he shows an effortless mastery of speed and was able to move lightning-fast over great distances without tiring, so much that he could suddenly appear in the blink of an eye. He is also capable of defying gravity to an extent, shown when he sprinted and jumped up enormous stalactites while they were falling in mid-air, though this is likely due to his advanced physical speed and acute reflexes. He would use his claws to climb structures and also seemed willing to use them to strike an enemy as seen in his battle with Shifu. He also displayed the ability to hold blue fire in his bare paws and use it when fighting, showing no visible signs of pain and demonstrating a high tolerance of it. One side of Tai Lung that is nearly unrivalled, is his extensive knowledge of kung fu and ruthless determination. No one could best him in skill alone, Po required the use of his enviornment and though he eventually bested him, the Snow Leopard did manage to pin the Dragon Warrior down first. Tai Lung's stamina is also noteworthy as he only went from battle to battle throughout the film and managed to run all the way from Chrun Gohm Prison to the Valley of Peace in a matter of days. Even after recieving multiple injuries and surviving a 200 meter fall, he still tried to fight. His pain tolerance is also seen when Po brings him to his knees with multiple blows from his stomach, sending him crashing through buildings and bouncing him high enough to leave a leopard-shaped hole in the ground. He is also seen using chi in some moves, such as his superkick, which he used on Po. This displays his limited skills at using Chi capabilities.

Tai Lung's signature moves include the nerve attack, which, ironically, was the same technique Oogway used to defeat him in his first attempt to steal the Dragon Scroll. Despite this, Tai Lung was capable of using it to paralyze and defeat most of the Furious Five. He also had a signature double-fist punch and a "sucker kick", both of which he used several times in the first film. Unfortunately, the nerve attack proved useless against Po, who only found it incredibly ticklish due to his panda physiology.

Despite being an extremely aggressive fighter, Tai Lung could be patient before taking action as he was able to withstand years of immobile imprisonment before quietly finding a way to free himself. He also used his opponent's weapons to his advantage, as well as other unsuspecting objects nearby, such as rope, a stick, or even a feather, which he used to escape the restraints that held him for twenty years.

Even after being heavily immobilized in jail for two decades, his Kung Fu skills and strength had not deteriorated mostly due to his Chi control technique in the general Kung Fu universe. In addition to defeating all the rhino guards of Chorh-Gom prison, he surpassed all of the Furious Five combined and even Shifu. Ultimately, Tai Lung is one of the most profound and powerful Kung fu warriors in history, rivalling Kai and nearing Oogway’s level compared to the rest. Even when faced with numerous opponents either the being hundreds of rhino soldiers or five of the most skilled Kung fu heroes, Tai Lung managed to come up on top. Despite this, however, he ultimately could not defeat Po in battle after Po managed to discover the ture meaning behind the Dragon Scroll, and was defeated by a combination of Po's skill, ingenuity, natural immunity to his nerve attack, high durability and use of the Wuxi Finger Hold.



All I ever did, I did to make you proud! Tell me how proud you are, Shifu! Tell me! TELL ME!!
—Tai Lung to Shifu during their battle, Kung Fu Panda

Young Tai Lung training with Shifu

Discovered by Shifu outside the palace as an infant, Tai Lung was taken in as his son and apprentice, and later displayed an innate talent for kung fu. Shifu proudly raised and trained him, driving him to train hard and believing that he was destined to become the Dragon Warrior, unaware he was tempering in the young snow leopard's heart a lust for power as Tai Lung, at the promise of Shifu, gained the mindset that he was indeed the Dragon Warrior. That proved to not be the case, however, when Oogway refused him the title.

Tai Lung had expected Shifu to speak to Oogway on his behalf but felt betrayed when Shifu did not, causing the darkness in his heart to explode. When the red panda tried to stop him from taking the Dragon Scroll, Tai Lung viciously attacked him without a second thought, even though Shifu himself had pulled back out of love for his son. Years after these events, Shifu was shown to be stern and withdrawn toward his new students, the result of carrying the emotional burden of Tai Lung's betrayal.

Tai Lung confronting Shifu for the first time in twenty years

Meanwhile, Tai Lung's rage had intensified a hundredfold while rotting in jail for the next twenty years. When he escaped, he made his way back to the Jade Palace where he confronted Shifu once more. This time, he tried to talk calmly to Shifu, addressing him respectfully as "Master." However, Shifu grimly insisted he was no longer his master and that they were to engage in battle. During the fight, Tai Lung unleashed his anger and blamed Shifu for what went wrong in the past, from letting Oogway's decision stand because of his "weakness" to being the one who gave him the ideals of becoming the Dragon Warrior.

Shifu initially just defended himself against Tai Lung, but finally struck back in anger when Tai Lung carelessly took Oogway's staff, declaring Shifu could be the one to make him the Dragon Warrior now. The battle then became more vicious and Tai Lung yelled that he has done everything he'd done just to make Shifu proud, striking the red panda with blue-flamed fists until Shifu was beaten. Shifu then finally apologized, admitting that it was the pride and love for Tai Lung that had blinded him from seeing his flaws, and seeing what Tai Lung had been turning into. Tai Lung's fury melted away and he hesitated, momentarily at a loss, finally seeing that Shifu did still love him.

Tai Lung suffocating Shifu

Even so, Tai Lung ultimately hardened his heart and seized Shifu by the throat, growling he did not want an apology, but the Dragon Scroll, and he demanded the master to reveal its location. Choking in Tai Lung's grip, Shifu repeated that Tai Lung would never have the Dragon Scroll, and, furious, Tai Lung attempted to finish him off, but was interrupted by the arrival of Po, after which he then carelessly threw Shifu to the ground. Hope that the two would reconcile was destroyed as a result of the battle, as it was clear that Tai Lung cared more about obtaining power than the love of his teacher and father figure.[1]


 [panting] You... can't defeat me!... You... you're just a big... fat... panda!
—Tai Lung to Po, Kung Fu Panda

Upon hearing that Oogway had chosen someone to be the Dragon Warrior, Tai Lung made his move and escaped from prison. During his journey back to the Valley, Tai Lung had heard about the Dragon Warrior, how he "fell out of the sky in a ball of fire" and was "a warrior, unlike anything the world has ever seen." He was eager for the opportunity to fight a "worthy opponent" and declared that their battle would be legendary.

Po about to use the Wuxi Finger Hold on Tai Lung

He then found himself amused and incredulous to see the Dragon Warrior Oogway had chosen was a "big fat panda", who acted casual and even made a few quips at Tai Lung. Tai Lung then proceeded to try and steal the Dragon Scroll from Po, underestimating him and only thinking his kung fu skills had been derived from the Dragon Scroll's "secret to limitless power." Enraged, he fought more seriously and eventually managed to get the scroll from Po, only to find that it was a blank, reflective surface with no secrets written on it. Even while down and injured, Po helpfully tried to explain the scroll's purpose, that the power was within oneself all along.

Confused and frustrated at this, Tai Lung tried to attack Po again and continued to fight in vain as Po used his physical attributes to overwhelm the snow leopard to the point where he had Tai Lung in the Wuxi Finger Hold. Tai Lung was afraid to see the technique but nervously thought that perhaps Po was bluffing and that Shifu never taught him the hold. He was momentarily relieved when Po admitted so until he added he had figured it out himself. With the move performed, Tai Lung was defeated by the true Dragon Warrior: A panda he had laughed at upon first meeting.[1]


Shifu presenting Tai Lung to Oogway in a flashback

Tai Lung was unaware that while Oogway observed his training, he did not like what he saw: Shifu's excessive pride was filling Tai Lung's heart with darkness. When Tai Lung was presented before Oogway, he was shocked when Oogway denied him the Dragon Scroll, apparently without hesitation. This, along with Shifu's silent refusal to speak up in his defense, enraged Tai Lung into showing the darkness in his heart by going on a rampage through the Valley of Peace before trying to take the scroll by force.

After knocking Shifu aside, Tai Lung attacked Oogway without hesitation, apparently considering Oogway as an inferior, only to be met with the truth that with all his prodigious skills, Oogway far surpassed him as Oogway intercepted and knocked him unconscious with nerve strikes in a matter of moments, but did not kill him. Ever since this incident and being put in Chorh-Gom Prison by the master, Tai Lung held a deep burning grudge against Oogway, even taking his sacred staff from its resting place after hearing of his death, merely using it to demonstrate to Shifu that he had the power to name him the Dragon Warrior and later using it to choke Shifu, snapping the staff apart in the process.[1]

The Furious Five

 [Laughs] You think I'm a fool? I know you're not the Dragon Warriornone of you!
—Tai Lung when confronted by the Furious Five, Kung Fu Panda

Tai Lung seemed aware that the five warriors who approached him at the Thread of Hope were Shifu's students, and the Five, in turn, knew of Tai Lung's history with Shifu, and as noted by Crane were "not supposed to talk about him". However, led by Tigress, the Furious Five were determined to stop Tai Lung before he could reach the Valley of Peace. Unimpressed to see them, Tai Lung's first reaction was to ask where the Dragon Warrior was. When Tigress suggested it was her, Tai Lung merely laughed, knowing full well that none of them were the Dragon Warrior, and only boasted how his battle with the real Dragon Warrior would be legendary, as it would be with a "worthy opponent". Angered, Tigress attacked him directly, aided by the rest of the Five.

Though Tai Lung ultimately overpowered them in battle, he seemed to grow some trace of respect for the Furious Five after fighting them as he praised their efforts, but added that Shifu didn't teach them everything and immobilized most of them with his nerve attack. He also did not finish them off but instead allowed Crane to carry his injured companions back to the Jade Palace as a warning.

The Wu Sisters

The canonicity of this section is questionable.
Information in this section may conflict with previously established canon.

In Kung Fu Panda: Legendary Warriors, the Wu Sisters are depicted as Tai Lung's loyal minions.


Tai Lung's attire

Tai Lung's outfit consists of a brown-studded belt and a pair of purple slacks, along with Shaolin leg wraps. The material of his pants appears to be the exact pattern and fabric of the blanket Shifu found him wrapped in upon first discovering the cub outside the palace gates.

In some concepts of the character, as well as in Kung Fu Panda: The Game and at the beginning of Kung Fu Panda Holiday (but never in the first film), Tai Lung was also shown wearing a studded shoulder plate and a metal gauntlet on his right arm.



Tai Lung appearing as one of Kai's amulets

In development

  • Tai Lung was designed to be "the hero of his own story," overcoming obstacles to chase only what he believes to be rightfully his, a concept that was inspired by The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell. Tai Lung was also given golden eyes to reflect this, as gold is the symbol of heroism in the films' color theory.[14]
  • Tai Lung's introduction in the first film was designed to be reminiscent of that of Hannibal Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs.[17]
  • For designing Tai Lung, character artist Nicolas Marlet looked to Chinese theatrical makeup as inspiration for Tai Lung's facial fur.[18]
  • In the original film, the number of dust particles in the dust cloud created after Tai Lung dives into Po, causing an explosion, added up to 33,588,526.[13]
  • The number of tiles Po sent raining down on Tai Lung (who climbed those tiles) in the first movie was 8,260 tiles total.[13]
  • Tai Lung was originally going to be the leader of a group of villains.

In popular culture

  • In one episode of MAD, he was briefly mentioned by Po, who had to fight Lord Shen and the Angry Birds alongside the Furious Five ("Last movie, I fought a snow leopard and now I'm fighting a bird?!").
  • Tai Lung's appearance and character traits resemble those of "Iron Vest" Yim, a cunning kung fu master named for his self-training methods in using heavy metal objects as powerhouse weights. He is featured as the main antagonist in the 1991 Hong Kong martial arts film Once Upon a Time in China.
  • Tai Lung appears as a crossover playable character in the 2D platform fighter game Brawlhalla.





Tai Lung: “I have come home, Master.
Shifu: “This is no longer your home, and I am no longer your master.
Tai Lung: “Oh yes. You have a new favorite. So where is this... "Po"? [Chuckles] Did I scare him off?
Shifu: “This battle is between you and me.
Tai Lung: “So, that is how it's going to be...
Shifu: “That is how it must be.

Shifu: “You were not meant to be the Dragon Warrior. That was not my fault!
Tai Lung: “Not your fault?! Who filled my head with dreams? Who drove me to training until my bones cracked? Who denied me my DESTINY?!

Tai Lung: “Give me the scroll!
Shifu: “I would rather die!
—While trying to strangle Shifu with Oogway's staff, Kung Fu Panda
Tai Lung: “Who are YOU?
Po: “Buddy, I... *gasp* am the Dragon Warrior.
Tai Lung: “You?! [Laughs mockingly and turns to Shifu, throwing him down] Him?! He's a panda! [Turns to Po] You're a panda! What are you going to do, big guy? Sit on me?
—Tai Lung after seeing Po, Kung Fu Panda

Tai Lung: “ [gasps] The Wuxi Finger Hold!
Po: “Oh, you know this hold?
Tai Lung: “You're bluffing. You're bluffing! Shifu didn't teach you that!
Po: “Nope. I figured it out. Skadoosh.
—Before Tai Lung's defeat, Kung Fu Panda

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 Revealed in DreamWorks Animation's Kung Fu Panda (2008). Written by Jonathan Aibel, Glenn Berger & directed by John Stevenson, Mark Osborne. Distributed by Paramount Pictures.
  2. Fantasy-Magazine.com - "Feature Interview: Jennifer Yuh Nelson, director of Kung Fu Panda 2" by Andrew Penn Romine. Published June 2011. Retrieved July 9, 2013.
  3. Revealed in DreamWorks Animation's Kung Fu Panda 3 (2016). Written by Jonathan Aibel, Glenn Berger & directed by Jennifer Yuh Nelson, Alessandro Carloni. Distributed by 20th Century Fox.
  4. Revealed in "Father Crime" from Nickelodeon's Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness. Ep. 25, Season 1. Written by Doug Langdale & directed by Michael Mullen. Originally aired April 4, 2012.
  5. Revealed in "The Kung Fu Kid" from Nickelodeon's Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness. Ep. 15, Season 1. Written by Kevin Seccia & directed by Juan Meza-Leon. Originally aired November 30, 2011.
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Internet Archive: kungfupanda.com Tai Lung on the September 24, 2010* version of the official Kung Fu Panda website via the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine
  7. Revealed in "Master and the Panda" from Nickelodeon's Kung Fu Panda: Legends of Awesomeness. Ep. 9, Season 2. Written by Gene Grillo & directed by Michael Mullen. Originally aired November 24, 2012.
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 Internet Movie Database Kung Fu Panda at the Internet Movie Database
  9. https://www.behindthevoiceactors.com/voice-compare/Kung-Fu-Panda/Tai-Lung/
  10. As listed in the episode cast list for "Master and the Panda".
  11. Simplified Chinese: 大龙?; traditional Chinese: 大龍; pinyin: dàlóng.
  12. Internet Movie Database Kung Fu Panda Trivia at the Internet Movie Database
  13. 13.0 13.1 13.2 Kung Fu Panda Fun Facts by HP
  14. 14.0 14.1 Revealed in the DVD audio commentary of DreamWorks Animation's Kung Fu Panda (2008). Narrated by John Stevenson and Mark Osborne (directors).
  15. WWF.panda.org - "Panda's natural enemies and defences"
  16. Red panda Red panda on Wikipedia
  17. Miller-Zarneke, Tracey. The Art of Kung Fu Panda, p. 178. ISBN: 1933784571.
  18. Miller-Zarneke, Tracey. The Art of Kung Fu Panda, p. 94. ISBN: 1933784571.