As I was walking through the aisles of New York Comic Con last month, I noticed the Media Blasters booth and ambled over. I'd recently participated in my first gig as the new co-host on the VCinema Show Podcast. Episode 35. Exte: Hair Extensions was the movie host "Coffin" Jon Jung, co-host Josh Samford and I had discussed. I'd suggested the film for review and had mentioned the fine two-disc edition that Media Blasters puts out on its live-action Tokyo Shock label. I felt that they'd like to know that I'd done this, and it would be a good way for me to re-establish contact with them.
There were several people manning the booth, but I was drawn to one fellow standing by himself in the back on one side. He looked rather familiar.
After introducing myself, he said something along the lines of, "Stan, it's me, Ric Meyers." I quickly realized why he looked familiar: I'd recently seen him in a YouTube clip pertaining to actor/director/co-writer Ara Palaya's recent film The Suppressor, in which Ric appears as the evil Claude Santos, a character whose name is a spoof on his resemblance to jolly old Saint Nic. (You can access the clip here.)
I've known about Ric since I started reading Asian Cult Cinema magazine in the mid-to-late '90s. I still feel honored when I recall learning that I'd been made the third columnist at the magazine, joining "elder brothers" Ric and Max Allan Collins, both of whom were far more knowledgeable than I.
It's pretty much impossible to overstate Ric's importance in promoting awareness and appreciation of Asian martial arts movies in the West. His first book Martial Arts Movies: From Bruce Lee to the Ninjas (a.k.a. From Bruce Lee to the Ninjas: Martial Arts Movies in its trade paperback form) came out in 1985! It was updated in 2001 and given the new title Great Martial Arts Movies; From Bruce Lee To Jackie Chan And More. In addition to writing for Asian Cult Cinema, Ric also wrote about films for Inside Kung Fu magazine. (He has consolidated and continued his Inside Kung Fu and Asian Cult Cinema columns on his website, ricmeyers.com.)
Ric was at The Con primarily to promote his two recent books, Films of Fury: The Kung Fu Movie Book and For One Week Only: The World Of Exploitation Films. I bought Films of Fury (For One Week Only is on my wish list) and I'll be reviewing it in the near future. The book came about because Lux Digital Pictures asked Ric to write a kung fu film documentary. Entitled Films of Fury: The Kung Fu Movie Movie, it became available on video-on-demand (VOD) earlier this month on the Cox, Comcast, Cablevision, and Insight cable systems. You can read about it here.
Though we'd both been columnists for Asian Cult Cinema, we'd never had any sort of contact with one another. It was wonderful to finally meet him. We had a great chat, exchanged email addresses and wished each other well.
Oh, and before I moved on, I did remember to tell the Media Blasters staff about that mention of their Exte DVD on the VCinema podcast. They were glad to hear of it, but not nearly as happy as I was to have met Ric.