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Scott Shaw
Scott Shaw: Chop Socky in Hollywood

Here's a fun/funny Press Release that my one-time publicist sent out to news services in Hong Kong back in ‘93. The title is politically incorrect by today’s standards. (Sorry!) In any case, you may find it interesting. Enjoy! :-)

Hong Kong is the undisputed world leader in the production of action adventure, martial art films, which have come to be fondly referred to by the international film community as ‘Chop Socky.’ These Hong Kong films have had a continually expanded audiences by being exported worldwide. Some of the viewers of these films are not satisfied to simply sit in their theater seat and watch the screen, however. Instead, they have collected their cameras and set about making their own version of Hong Kong ‘Chop Socky’ films; such is the case with Hollywood actor and filmmaker, Scott Shaw. “I’m just honoring the Hong Kong tradition and expanding “Chop Socky’ to an international cast and crew level,” proclaims Shaw.
Shaw is one of the most well-known martial artists in the United States. He is continually feature in their martial art publications. With thirty years of experience under his Black Belt, in addition an impressive acting resume, he has moved on from not only acting in martial art films but on to writing, producing, and directing them, as well.
With martial art at the heart of his features, Shaw has created such films as “Psycho Cyber Ninja from Babylon,” “Samurai Vampire Bikers Form Hell,” and the just released “Alexander Hell.” Following in Hong Kong filmmaking style, he gets his cast and crew together on location and sets about making his films freestyle in what he has titled ‘Zen Filmmaking.’ If the actors change their lines a little bit, that’s fine with him. If a scene doesn’t work, he will rewrite it on the set. The film’s martial arts are choreographed on the set, just before the filming, as well. “It is all about art,” Shaw claims. “All that is important is the finished product is filled with as much art as possible; from the lighting, to the dialog, to the action, and on to the soundtrack.
As Hong Kong ‘Chop Socky’ films never play in the big movie theaters in the States, Shaw takes solace in the fact his films have found an audience with the generally younger, art house crowd, and have not moved into the mainstream. If the growing trend of “Chop Socky’ film fans continue to increase, however, Shaw may well have to change his attitude, as new fans flock to his films all the time.
Shaw who often travels to Hong Kong to, “Stay close to his roots,” as he puts it, loves the energy that emanates from Hong Kong. He feels this is the source of the beauty in the Hong Kong filmmaking style. “In Hong Kong films, there is always room for humor,” says Shaw, “Even in the most serious action-adventure film. This is why they have a growing audience here in the States. The American film-goer is tired of the forced seriousness of American action adventure films.”

With art at his center and Hong Kong in his heart Scott Shaw moves forward with “Chop Socky’ in Hollywood.

Available for Interviews: 2 - 10 February 1993

Scott Shaw Chop Socky in Holywood