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Inspirography: The Man With The Iron Fists

RZA (born Robert Fitzgerald Diggs) has a long association with the inspirography of Far West. One of the founding members of the seminal hip-hop group The Wu-Tang Clan, RZA is (as the name of his group attests), a kung-fu movie aficionado of the highest order, mixing soundbites and samples from classic Shaw Brothers films into the tracks he’d compose. Branching outward from Wu-Tang, he composed the score to Ghost Dog: Way of the Samurai (and featured in a cameo), as well as the score for Afro Samurai and Afro Samurai: Resurrection. His entire career has been about the mashing up of the wuxia genre with other sources, and now, in his directorial debut, he has produced a film that appears to be perfect Far West fodder.

Produced by Quentin Tarantino and written by RZA and Eli Roth, The Man With The Iron Fists opens in theaters on November 2nd — but already the film’s score, composed by RZA and Howard Drossin, has been a regular feature in the Far West writing playlist. The movie features warring kung fu clans, a cowboy, over-the-top weapons, all set in 19th century China and set to a hip-hop beat. The official synopsis:

“Since his arrival in China’s Jungle Village, the town’s blacksmith (played by RZA) has been forced by secret kung fu clans to create elaborate tools of destruction. When the clans’ brewing war boils over, the stranger channels an ancient energy to transform himself into a human weapon. As he fights alongside iconic heroes and against soulless villains, one man must harness this power to become savior of his adopted people.”

Gaze upon the awesomeness of the film’s trailer:




 
Recently, they released an animated short which serves as a prequel to the film — the look of this is very similar to what I hope to achieve with eventual animated Far West web video, so it’s worth checking out, not just for the Iron Fists niftyness, but as a possible preview of what’s in our future as well.



 
Lastly, if you’d like to get a peek inside my brain as I’ve been writing more Far West material, here’s a 16 minute suite from the score, sampling several tracks:



 
And now, speaking of writing, back to work for me. Later this week, we’ll be back with “directors commentary” development articles about Far West game design, more inspirography, and samples of new artwork. We’re returning to a schedule of regular updates, so be sure to check back often.
 
 

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