Thursday, August 31, 2023

Dine In. Take out. Kick a$$!


This is a fun new film project currently in development. Actor and filmmaker Michael Worth (KILLING CUPID) is aiming to reunite a bevy of kung fu cinema laureates with his latest cinematic effort, HOUSE OF FANGS. The film will be a dark action-comedy that harkens back to the style and sensibilities conveyed in beloved martial arts titles from banners like Golden Harvest, Shaw Brothers and Seasonal Film Corporation, mixed with John Wick style gunplay and generously sprinkled with Tarrantino-style humor.

Various veteran (amd modern) action actors are in talks, but the casting potentials include: Angela Mao Ying (ENTER THE DRAGON), Dragon Lee (THE CLONES OF BRUCE LEE), Bruce Le (ENTER THE GAME OF DEATH), Chiu Chi Ling (DUEL OF THE 7 TIGERS), Bruce Li (BRUCE LEE, THE MAN, THE MYTH), Don Wang Tao (THE HOT, THE COOL, AND THE VICIOUS) and Bruce Leung (KUNG FU HUSTLE). Rounding out the casting hopefuls are Michael Dudikoff (AMERICAN NINJA franchise), Mark Dacascos (ONLY THE STRONG), Scott Adkins (AVENGEMENT), Dolph Lundgren (THE EXPENDABLES franchise) and Lorenzo Lamas (SNAKE EATER trilogy). That's a veritable dreamteam of action icons.  

Worth is directing from his own script which is described as ‘DRAGON GATE INN meets JOHN WICK’ as a group of American assassins hiding out in a rural Chinese restaurant discover the owners of the establishment serve up much more than just good food!”. 

The movie also reunites Worth with fellow action veteran Andy Cheng (SHANG-CHI AND THE LEGEND OF THE TEN RINGS, THE RUNDOWN) following Isaac Florentine’s U.S. SEALS 2: THE ULTIMATE FORCE (2001), on which Cheng also served as fight choreographer.

For the teaser posters, my influence was an old 2-color ad for a Chinese restaraunt that was on the back cover of a multi-page newsprint flyer given out by the American Theater in Washington D.C. in 1988. This theater is where I enjoyed a Hong Kong double feature every Sunday evening. Best six bucks I ever spent. (Oddly enough, that exact restaurant is where I had dinner with several visiting HK movie actors years later, but that's another story.)      

If this sounds like the kind of movie you want to see. (And if not, you need your head examined.) Here's your chance to help make it a reality. Back it HERE!

To Hell with another stale Hollywood rebooted remake or reimagined regurgitation. Drop by HOUSE OF FANGS for a steaming dish of fresh action served "piping hot". (Not to mention the tastiest dim sum in town.)  

Here's the Heckler & Koch UMP-9 version:

And a Glock 19 version:

Double swords version:

Again, check it out HERECatch you nex time.

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

She Shoots Straight

I created this piece of key art for the 1990 Hong Kong action film SHE SHOOTS STRAIGHT (aka LETHAL LADY). This Corey Yuen-directed film was a starring role for rising action starlet (and Sammo hung's future wife) Joyce Mina Godenzi. The half Chinese, half Australian beauty was the 1984 Miss HK pageant winner who, like many others before and since, transitioned her talents into acting.

Under the tutelage of action master Sammo Hung, Joyce appeared and later starred in a handful of films in the late 1980s and early 1990s before retiring from showbiz. She was nominated for Best Supporting Actress in Hung's 1987 action masterpiece EASTERN CONDORS. Godenzi and Hung wed in 1995 and she had a small cameo in Jackie Chan's 1997 film MR. NICE GUY, directed by her husband and shot in Australia.

SHE SHOOTS STRAIGHT is Joyce at the peak of her powers as an action actress. Her brutal climactic battle with American-born Filipina bodybuilder, Agnes Aurelio, is legendary. And they even got a rematch in LICENSE TO STEEL. The wonderful cast features "big" Tony Leung Ka-fai, Carina Lau, Yuen Wah, Chung Fat, and even Sammo himself in a small role. (Even Mark Houghton gets a brief cameo.) Eagle-eyed viewers may even spot cameos from Amy Yip and Isabella Chow who a year later would blaze across cinema screens in the hit Cat III film SEX AND ZEN.

The films rarely slows down, has a bit more dramatic depth than these types of films are normally afforded and is a lot of fun. That high energy is what I attempted to capture in my cover art. Everybody gets their bit of action while Hung oversees the carnage. Bullets and fists fly in equal measure. And, trust me, you wouldn't want to be in the way of either one.  

Next up. Too old to rock n' roll, but too young to die? There's trouble in town. Time to raid the martial arts retirment home and get the band back together for one last bash. That's NEXT time.