Tai Lung was the adopted son of Master Shifu, who had raised and trained him under the impression that he was to become the prophesied Dragon Warrior some day. However, after he was denied the title by Master Oogway, Tai Lung revealed his true dark nature by rampaging the Valley and resulting in his incarceration for twenty years.

As a child, Tai Lung showed a natural talent in the art of kung fu, and it became apparent that the cub was nothing short of a prodigy. Shifu lovingly trained him in everything that he knew, and became even more convinced that this was a sign that the leopard was the foretold Dragon Warrior of Legend. Over time, Tai Lung grew proud and overly confident in his own skills, having mastered Leopard kung fu and advanced techniques such as nerve attacks, as well as all one thousand scrolls of kung fu by adulthood. But despite all his accomplishments, Tai Lung still sought the power of the Dragon Scroll and believed he was the Dragon Warrior. It was this overwhelming pride and lust for power that alerted Master Oogway of the darkness.