This week’s Hit List has opened my eyes to a few gems I am strongly curious about, and I hope to learn more in the nearest future after this.
L to R (top): Monica Lopez, Kay Sodderman, Carrie Bernans, Felix King, Tara Macken L to R: François Girard, Heather Wake, Taz Garcia, Lisa Connell, Marlon Perrier
Skipping further fluff, let’s get it on this week with a fantastic playlist stunt and action reels headlined by a raft of rising talents in Niko Bogucki, Isaac Rivera and ginger beauty, actress Heather Wake, followed by feats from Yavuz Topuz, TeamOneTake’s own Hector Soria, Jasmine Wright, Joe Bagtas, Nozawa Yutaka, Jackie Gerhardy, Film Combat Syndicate favorite Adam Brashaw, Katoh Kohji, Amy Schumacher, Bryan Dodds, Marlon Perrier, Carrie Bernans, Kyle Sodderman, and a delightful drone parkour collab from Storm Freerun and The Motus Projects.
Up next in promotional gems are just a this week, and in striking, catch-up fashion upon acquainting myself at long last over the weekend with filmmaker Kris Mayeshiro. His latest endeavor, TakeDown, has some screentime in Ms. Gerhardy’s reel above and it struck such a chord that I had to look him up to learn more about it.
As such, the shortfilm itself which joins Gerhardy with lead actress Victoria Viveiros for a story that centers on a woman dispensing her own brand of justice following the murder of her ex-girlfriend. TakeDown currently has two festival runs to its legacy with splashing results from crowds this month at the Nevada Women’s Film Festival, and last year’s Action On Film Festival with several nominations to its credit including in fight choreography, action sequence and Breakout Action Actress.
I’m more than proud to share it’s trailer after having never known of it all this time. It’s especially opportune as we are now just days from the shortfilm’s release online with an exact date pending, and to boot, I have five exclusive stills which you can view just beneath!
L to R (top): Xavier Luo, Kawui Joa, Victoria Viveiros, Paul Loduca, Katoh Kohji L to R (bottom): Joseph Roark, Yavuz Topuz, Jonathen Pantera Wallace, Angel Vazquez, Jose Manuel
Following that is a project all the more worth looking toward from director Johnny Balazs who architectured the sizzling action and thrills in last year’s film fest delight, Dancer. He’s back with Night Shift, and with a quartet hinting at something of a slightly more tactical nature with a cast that includes actress Adele Elasmar, Liz Conrado, Stephen Degenaro and Zia Kelly.
Having set a precedent for his production banner with Dancer earning 24 award wins and 11 nominations, Balazs now aims higher for its value in quality fight action delivery with cameras set to roll in June. Sampling just a tiny bit of what’s to come, he recently took to his Instagram account to showcase some pre-viz fight work with Elasmar and Kelly turning it up ahead of production. You can check that out just beneath the album.
Josh Videña and Geoffrey Boggs get slammin’ to start this week’s fights and films segment of the Hit List right before Joseph Roark gets sent flying into action as well with Dominique Smith lensing. Tara Macken and Monica Lopez reprise their runaway feats with a reupload from last year while Taz Garcia and Paul Loduca make work of fighting for the remote, Jackie Chan-style, Kawui Joa and Xavier Luo “elevate” the action in We Meet Again, and Aaron Toney enlists an energizing quartet of practice fighters in Katie O’Donovan, Thekla Hutyrova, Yavuz Topuz and uploader Nick Kraweic.
Stephané Girondeaud and François Girard go center ring for the last Fanta per a #FANTAXYOU2 contest entry before Jon Beal and Kai Young engage en garde for an anime-style broadsword fight lensed by Priscilla Fontanez, and Jose Manuel and Angel Vazquez battle it out for the crown in King Of The Backyard.
Afterwards, we then immerse ourselves into the darker, gritter thrillers in Out Alive from Felix King and Ruben Maldonado, and Adem Suljic’s newest home invasion thriller entry, The Fall. Rob Cooper takes flight in a hail of bullets for Marcus Shakesheff’s Epic Gun Fight with Jean-Paul Ly, Lauren Okadigbo and Nick Roeten and Jonathen Pantera Wallace fights to clear his name from the annals of mistaken Lin Kuei history in I’m Not Bi-Han.
Rounding it all out are two, distinguished projects packed with enjoyment, first of which hails from Matthew Robinson with The Collector, hailing a love letter to the action stylings of 87Eleven with Marc Rodrigues-Bernet starring and serving up the action with actress Lisa Connell and a squad of hungry stunties lining up for the kill.
Last and far from least is Santos, a gruesome character study ripe with darkness and intrigue as we observe a day in the life of a man bound by duties as the ultimate crimefighting avenger of restless afterlife spirits against evil doers among the living. Santos was once a proof-of-concept for Vega and co-creator Khalil Barnett in their current efforts to build bigger-scale projects, though the process eventually waned and took its tool through a number of hurdles during all phases of production, including the untimely passing of co-star Steve Villalobos.
Vega graced fans online briefly last year with a screening before taking it to the festival circuit and winning Best Sci-Fi/Supernatural award in the Blood Sweat & Bones section of last year’s Urban Action Showcase and Expo.
You can now check out the shortfilm in full bookending the playlist below.
L to R (top): Thekla Hutyrova, Bryan Dodds, Jasmine Wright, Geoffrey Wright, Jackie Gerhardy L to R (bottom): Zia Kelly, Joey Bagtas, Katie O’Donovan, Stephané Girondeaud, Amy Schumacher
I couldn’t be more proud of this week’s entries and I especially want to thank those who’ve privately messaged me in advance, and as always, keep up the good work!
Catch last week’s installment here and remember to SHARE the hit list and sub to the channels. And, if you’re of similar caliber in the field of action on film and stunts with a reel or a project that needs promoting or sharing, don’t hesitate to run it by us at firstname.lastname@example.org!