SummerFall (& Final!) Martial Arts in Media 2016

This may, or may not, be a momentous bang and/or whimper occasion. I can’t remember exactly when I started writing this column for the gone-and-might-be-forgotten (albeit, in some quarters, fondly remembered) Inside Kung-Fu magazine, but I seem to recall it was around 1991. That makes it a nice round anniversary, since the final issue of
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2016 SDCC Kung Fu Extravaganza Playlist!

Well, this was one for the record books – perhaps the most balanced, consistent, exciting Extravaganza, with an exceptional ratio of gasps, laughs, and cheers. It started with the introductions, beginning with the man who helped start it all – Frank Djeng, the Tai Seng Entertainment “Master of Remaster.” Sadly, Tai Seng, that pioneering distributor
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Martial Arts in Media Winter 2016

American author Thomas Wolfe once wrote a book called You Can’t Go Home Again – a phrase that, over the years, has come to signify that attempting to recapture the joys of one’s youth is folly. In fact, on the Wikipedia page it flatly states “attempts to relive youthful memories will always fail.” Well, if
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Crouching Tiger Two, Hidden Dragon Zero

I have not been looking forward to this for quite some time. The Weinstein Company’s inexplicable campaign to marginalize Asian action films, and minimize its effect on American cinema, has been going on for decades now (see my Daily Grindhouse op-ed one post away on this site). Even as far as two years ago I
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2015 SanDiegoComiCon KungfuExtravaganza Playlist!

The 18th Annual San Diego Comic Con Superhero Kung Fu Extravaganza is a wrap, and was awesome sauce – thanks to you, my co-hosts, Well Go USA, and all the filmmakers who made the eye-bulging, jaw-dropping clips we showed. So, as is the relatively new tradition, here’s a run down of what we showed (and
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Martial Arts in Media Spring 2015

Any filmmaker who prize their creative freedom may never make another film in China, unless they need money or things change. At the moment all Chinese filmmakers (Hong Kong included/especially) have to brave the gauntlet of Governmental review at the start and end of production (at the very least). Even for those willing and able
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Martial Arts in Media Winter 2015

After conflicting reports warning of a softer 2014 box-office, the China Film Bureau declared that profits were up thirty-six percent from last year, that more than six hundred Chinese films had been produced, and the total number of cinemas now number 23,600. By any criteria, that’s a lot of eyes, screens, butts, seats, and moolah.
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Martial Arts in Media Summer 2014

Notice anything different about the headline? Yes, the day has finally arrived. Although I have maintained this monthly column for Inside Kung-Fu magazine and on this site for decades, the martial art movie is in such dire straits — from Chinese Government interference to American studio sabotage, as well as the general creeping generic action
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Martial Arts in Media 5/14

The cinemas in China continue to multiply, and the audience continues to grow, but the films that are being fed to them are like meat to lions. If they’re hungry, they’ll devour anything thrown at them and roar for more – no matter how tough the gristle. Producers and studios don’t mind. “Look how successful
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Martial Arts in Media 1/14

For the first time since China took over Hong Kong in 1997, the future looks interesting (at the least) and hopeful (at the most) for kung fu film fans. To put that contention in perspective, The Hollywood Reporter recently cited Chinese cinema’s growing concern about international disparities. “While China’s domestic box office in 2012 was
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