by Tony Rutherford , HNN Entertainment Editor
Green Hornet
Green Hornet

HUNTINGTON, WV (HNN) –  One of dramatic radio’s favorite heroes comes to the 3-D screen Friday, Jan. 14. Identified for a buzzing theme known as “Flight of the Bumble Bee,” “The Green Hornet,” chased “public enemies who destroy our America,” according to its 1930s opening narration.


A newspaper publisher, Brit Reid, doubled as the masked vigilante. His sidekick was Kato.  The hero has been featured in serials of the 40s, comic books and on television, where Bruce Lee played the sidekick. Van Johnson played the Hornet in the 60s ‘camp’ series.



Interestingly, the Second World War had an impact on Kato’s native country. Before the war he was “Brit Reid’s Japanese butler,” but after Pearl Harbor he was a “faithful valet.” In the serials he was allegedly Korean. Gerald Natchman , author of Raised on Radio, stated that a June 1941 episode (“Walkout for Profit”) had Reid refer to Kato as a Filipino valet.  



The film opens across the region, including Marquee Pullman Square, Park Place Stadium Cinemas (Charleston), Marquee Southridge (Charleston), Marquee Galleria (Beckley), as well as the Cinemark screens in Ashland and Barboursville, where there will be a Thursday midnight showing. It will also play at Phoenix Kyova Mall and the Teays Valley Cinemas, Hurricane.



Times will be announced for the flick later Tuesday or Wednesday.