Enter the Fist — My Movie Poster for a Movie that I’m In

September 19, 2016

Bizarre story: I was standing around one day when Oliver Stone’s son, Sean Stone, and Jean-Claude Van Damme’s daughter, Bianca Van Damme, and Alexander Wraith from Orange is the New Black, were about to have lunch when they looked over at me and were like, “You should be a John Travolta thug in our movie!”

And so, that is just what I became. It was so awesome working on the set of Enter the Fist and the Golden Fleecing. It’s an action comedy inspired by 1980’s action flicks with tons of really cool cameos …like Danny Trejo, Ernie Reyes Jr (yup!! One of my childhood favorites from Ninja Turtles!!!!) and a lot of pro-wrestlers and martial artists.Enter the Fist and the Golden Fleecing.jpg

Taimak (yup again!!! The very same Taimak from the 1985 cult classic The Last Dragon) at one point enlisted me to reenact a fight scene from Bruce Lee’s Enter the Dragon. We were off-camera, in the patio outside the studio (afternoon sunshine gleaming all around) with a relatively small audience including stunt coordinator Pete Antico. Taimak, of course, played the part of Bruce Lee …and I was the guy getting beat up hahaha. But throughout the reenactment, Taimak described how this was more than just a fight. It was an emotional release. With each kick and punch, Bruce Lee’s character was in reality facing his fears and ultimately conquering the terrors of his past.

Perhaps one of the most surreal moments happened after I filmed a scene and got a few laughs – playing up the 1980s action comedy theme – Michael Dudikoff (the dude from the American Ninja movies that I watched as a kid!!!!!) came up to me, shook my hand, and said, “It was wonderful working with you!”

As a visual artist, I was so inspired by my experience that I ended up creating a movie poster. This artwork can now be seen on the IMDb page for Enter the Fist, with many the actors tagged in it (me included, Rey Marz as the Travolt Thug!!! I’m on the bottom row …the lead hair stylist, Leesa Simone, did a great job puffing up my hairdo like Saturday Night Fever)

Be sure to check it out!

 


Painting for Autism – Anchoring a Dream

May 15, 2013

Communication is one of the biggest challenges for someone with autism.  Even if you’re shy, or unable to find the right words, we at least know how it’s done.  But with autism, it’s like becoming lost trying to follow a jumble of lines on a map.

Productive, positive relationships.  That’s the basis for the Anchoring a Dream project in Pasadena, at a place called Villa Esperanza.  Basically, I painted an interactive mural.  Its surface is reusable.  Kids can take communication outside the classroom, practice sharing their dreams and ideas by painting directly into the clouds of the mural.

Dreaming

One day I came to the mural and found this wheelchair, where a child with ambulatory difficulties had wanted to sit here a while, perhaps dreaming of possibilities.

When it came time for the mural unveiling, I was floored!  The kids and teachers came out, talked about the mural and gave me this amazing thank you card.  (That’s me in the pic, flanked on either side by my ultra-proud mom and dad.)  Best of all, I got to see the mural in action.  The kids had already drawn a rainbow and put the word “Autumn” on the sail of the mural’s paper boat.

Image

Posing with my parents, with a Villa Esperanza baseball cap, a beautifully framed certificate, and this awesome thank you card that the kids had made!

My mom was so taken by the whole experience that she decided to write an article.  Yes, of course, because that’s what moms do best!  Well, she also wanted to try out Facebook’s “notes” feature, and I suppose that I helped a little bit.  For this unique behind-the-scenes look, check out Anchoring a Dream.

Or support the kids by making a donation at Villa Esperanza.  They’ve been around for over 5o years supporting individuals with developmental disorders.  Be sure to put “Anchoring a Dream” in the box that says “How did you hear about us?”

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