I take this fact to mind in observing the career progression of martial arts star, actor Scott Adkins, once a stuntman and someone who has essentially woven himself into ample popularity as an action-capable actor, and with his biggest audience keen on major martial arts fanfare. It’s a succession that has not been easy – one plagued by the ever-continued proliferation of piracy that causes films like Adkins’s latest reprisal to remain stagnant for years before ever seeing the light of day, and it should not be that way if the fans wish to see more.
The short is just the latest to arrive from Shakesheff in the weeks since the announcement of his latest starring and directorial debut, Kamikaze which is now available on DVD in the U.S. courtesy of Indican Pictures. It’s the first film of its kind to come out of Wales and Shakesheff’s work, stemming from his credits as a bonafide Hollywood stuntman and extended further to online netizens and fans of martial arts action is sure to further put Wales on the map for years to come.
Martial arts action cinema has seen a ton of glory in the field of film for many years with a multitude of memorable and iconic characters to lend credit to. One such role as of late has been actor Scott Adkins‘s delivery of born-again Russian mixed-martial arts champion, Uri Boyka, following two principle roles in the direct-to-video end of the Undisputed franchise, with the sequel and threequel in 2006 and 2010 respectively, from director Isaac Florentine.
Clock into 2015 well long after the third film as fans remained sizzling with hope for another installment and fans evidently got their wish in late 2013 prior to principle photography earlier this summer, and no less with a meaty handful of top notch action actors from select parts of the world all congregating in Sofia, Bulgaria for the production of Boyka: Undisputed IV. Adkins and Florentine are reunited once more with co-star and fight choreographer Tim Man since putting together the dazzling action in Fantastic Fest 2013 favorite, Ninja: Shadow Of A Tear – another title that is still garnering fandom in support of another, and granted, one that will assure fans more to come from Adkins and those in his corner.
Of course, none of this forward-movement is easy to come by. It took a really, really long time for another Undisputed movie to emerge, and now with its completion of principle photography, it’s onto the next phase which is post-production, and hopefully it won’t be long within that period before we see some footage. Until then, we can rest ourselves in the fact that another is in the can with an invariably exceptional amalgam of screenfighters – several of whom I have written about before on any number of indie projects. This, coupled with a great plot guarantees the franchise even further greatness for a character that has cultivated a generation of martial arts fans and athletes with the purposing of an idol that brings a world of electricity to a niche that will never run out of enthusiasm.
On that note, it’s Adkins himself who had something to say to his followers via social media regarding the new film, its stunt players, the possible future of the character he plays, and more:
That’s a wrap on Boyka: Undisputed IV. I’ve put my heart & soul into this shoot and pushed my body to it’s absolute limit to bring you the next instalment of the greatest martial arts movie franchise the West has to offer.
Yuri Boyka will face many new fights in this chapter, but none more dangerous than the fight within himself.
I’d like to thank Teodora Duhovnikova, Paul Chahidi and Alon Aboutboul who brought their characters to life with and supported my performance in the best way possible.
The fighters Emilien De Falco, Trayan Milenov, Andy Long, Brahim Achabbakhe and Martyn Ford for giving it their all (especially Andy Long who I sent to the hospital – sorry Andy).
Tim Man, our fight choreographer, we couldn’t do it without you my friend (2 more sections please).
All the Bulgarian cast & crew for all their hard work and dedication.
I love playing this character and we already have ideas on where to take him next so do me a favour – if you want to see more of Yuri Boyka and don’t want to wait another 6 years to see it then please, please support this movie through the official channels and not illegal downloads. It needs to make a profit to justify a sequel, it’s plain economics.
Time for me to rest my aching bones.
“If I’m the champion of the toilets? Then what does that make you when I kick the fucking shit out of you?!”
So, for all intents and purposes, it’s quite simple, really. Grant your monetary support to this movie and support Adkins and the cast and crew of his film the right way, and we will see plenty more. The same goes for his recently-completed craft of action with Florentine for Close Range, which still awaits a date; You can also catch Adkins opposite Wu Jing on September 1 when Well Go USA releases Wolf Warrior on DVD and Blu-Ray.
Stay tuned for more info!
It was made public last week that Crystal Sky and Lionsgate began working on a prequel to the 2010 film, Tekken, based on Namco’s live-action tournament fighting game franchise. Announced at the time via martial arts action star Kane Kosugi‘s official blog, the new film was announced as Tekken: A Man Called X, which was previously reported with director Prachya Pinkaew attached.
Stunt coordinator and fight choreographer Brahim Achabbakhe (center) took to Facebook this weekend to share a group photo with his choreography team a day ahead of the forthcoming production for the new film Tekken: A Man Called X from Crystal Sky and Lionsgate. The photo comes just after action star Kane Kosugi (second from right) announced on his official blog that he would be playing the titular role.
The film is set as a prequel to the 2010 reinterpretation of the NAMCO property directed by Dwight Little and starring Jon Foo, Ian Anthony Dale and Cary Hiroyuki-Tagawa. Not much else is known about the film as of yet with principal phototography scheduled for the next three weeks, in addition to previous reports that Ong Bak director Prachya Pinkaew was attached as the director.
To name a few, Achabbakhe‘s most recent credits in stunts and choreography include Street Fighter: The Legend Of Chun Li, actor Kazu Neda’s directorial debut in the 2013 action short, Marksmen with Ron Smoorenburg (Who Am I?, Skin Traffik), working with under action director Tim Man and doubling for action star Scott Adkins in Ninja: Shadow Of A Tear which co-starred Kosugi, and going toe-to-toe with Tiger Chen in the Keanu Reeves’ helmer, Man Of Tai Chi. Fans can expect more updated cast and crew news about Tekken: A Man Called X as the year rolls on.
It was not too long ago that I ranted in an editorial I crossposted over at The Action Elite about the need for a redux of the latest attempt at live-action for Tekken. At the time, my article didn’t meet much ire from a lot of readers (although I wouldn’t be surprised if certain folks disapproved), but many of the reactions I received were pretty upbeat and understanding. Although as badly as I would have wanted to see Tekken remade properly, after the last couple of years, I never would have guessed what would happened next…which now leads me to actor and martial arts action star Kane Kosugi.
Kosugi seen some great fortune throughout his career from childhood to adulthood, nowadays even moreso from the widespread approval of his most recent role in Isaac Florentine’s newest martial arts action thriller, Ninja: Shadow Of A Tear. Now the word, forwarded from Kosugi‘s official blog is that he has been tapped to play the titular role in the upcoming Hollywood production of Tekken: A Man Called X, touted as a prequel to the 2009 production of Tekken from Rapid Fire helmer Dwight H. Little. If the news sounds a bit funny to you, then you may recall just a year and a half earlier when Steven Paul, CEO of Crystal Sky announced to the presses that the new film, previously titled Tekken: Rise Of The Tournament, with director Prachya Pinkaew (Ong Bak, Tom Yum Goong 1 & 2) attached, would aim for a direct resemblance to the characters for its pending cast. And for the length of his tweet’s existence, the announcement didn’t stop Katsuhiro Harada, the creator of the very fighting game the films are based, from denying the news a few years after expressing his own disapproval of the Little-directed film earlier on.
Tekken: A Man Called X will serve as the fourth in line of films based on the highly acclaimed fighting game, since the 1998 animated film and director Yoichi Mori’s 2011 CG feature-length rendering, Tekken: Blood Vengeance, which Harada-san also helped with. The film also serves as Kosugi’s third fighting game-driven film since voicing the character Ryu in the 1999-animated film Street Fighter Alpha before going under action director Corey Yuen’s wing for the 2006 all-girl fight flick, D.O.A.: Dead Or Alive, in addition to Kosugi’s latest collaboration with Scott Adkins’s stunt double and co-coordinator for Ninja: Shadow Of A Tear, actor and stuntman Brahim Achabbakhe (Marksmen, Man Of Tai Chi) who will reportedly to direct the action scenes.
There is no word yet on who else has been cast, let alone what Harada-san’s response is to the film since his deleted tweets about anything Tekken movie-related as of 2010. So keep those antennae up and on high alert going into 2015 when as the film’s production makes headway.
Ninja: Shadow Of A Tear is now available on DVD, Blu-Ray and digital wherever movies are sold with further releases pending. Meanwhile, Prachya’s new film, Tom Yum Goong 2, is currently on its way to the U.S. with a 3D release date from Magnolia also pending.
H/T: Kung Fu Cinema
At 28, Brahim Achabbahke is an internationally accomplished stuntman, martial arts actor, stunt coordinator and stunt performer. His career in the field only got brighter when he began pursuing martial arts at age 15, and then beginning work in Thailand at age 22. To name of few since then, he has worked on dozens of film projects, sharing credits with the likes of Jean-Claude Van Damme, Gary Daniels, Tim Man, Kazu Patrick Tang, Jeeja Yanin, Prachya Pinkaew and Tony Jaa.
As 2013 rolls on, martial arts cinema fans will rave with anticipation with some of the year’s biggest titles bound for release this year, with the release of MAN OF TAI CHI and the upcoming Scott Adkins action sequel, NINJA 2, directed by Isaac Florentine. In anticipation of this, Brahim also has a few projects of his own in the works, one of which is on the way to the film festival circuit this summer called MARKSMEN. In addition, Brahim is currently involved in an on-going fundraising campaign for an inspired action feature film called HAMMER-ON, to be directed by expert action cinematographer and hopeful filmmaker, Ross Clarkson.
With any luck and enough donations, Hammer-On will be another history-making contemporary action classic for fans to enjoy. If you are still not convinced, then check out Brahim’s latest showreel and see what’s in store for the film, which, granted that the fundraiser is a success, will see Brahim feature as the film’s co-star and fight choreographer.
Currently, Ross is on location in Bulgaria shooting HERCULES 3D with director Renny Harlin (Die Hard 2, Cliffhanger, 12 Rounds), and actor Kellan Lutz. Meantime, check out the reel below, and make it go viral. Hopefully this will help get the ball rolling and make Hammer-On a reality.
Click HERE to learn more about the film and how to donate.
Photo Source: Wikipedia
Before completing Ninja 2, however, and determined to continue evolving as filmmakers, Achabbahke, Smoorenburg and Tang collaborated last year with actor and Ninja 2 cast member Yuhkoh Matsuguchi on a shortfilm of their own called MARKSMEN. The short was directed by Tang, and also starring Smoorenburg along with Achabbahke who also served as stunt and fight coordinator.