BACK IN THE SADDLE AGAIN
Not sure if that’s good or bad, but take it as it is. After four miserable years dealing with white supremacy and authoritarianism, I am hoping that i can get my focus back on film. But social justice is always a topic and a mission I will not shirk from.
And Fuck Donald Trump.
So anyway, since I’ve been gone a lot has gone down.
I am now teaching film at the University of Louisville, and the Columbus College of Art and design. Both positions came out of the blue, which is astounding since I have been seeking out teaching positions since I graduated in 1986. However, it seems most Universities don’t want people with real world experience, favoring instead fancy titles and long bibliographies. Now don’t get me wrong, I absolutely respect people who have spent their lives on research and theory. It lays the groundwork for a larger understanding of our “business”. What I never got was the reluctance to hire someone who actually WORKS in the industry their students are trying to get into.
Furthermore, I am disgusted by the job offers from many so-called “respectable corporations” who expect you to be expert in every aspect of film and video, except story telling (more on that later), and then want you to work for a little more than minimum wage. Worse yet are companies trying to offer “Internships” to people possessing industry leading skills sets. Seriously? Get the entire fuck outta here. We just don’t throw shit on a computer and create Star Wars bitch. Pay us what we’re worth. Or buy your own software and do your own fucking work.
Okay, I went off on a rant. That’s not what I came here for today. Today is to pound my chest just a tiny little bit.
So. let me first thank Clark Illmatical, a jack of all trades, world traveling, artistic genius who had been following my adventures for years. We had been conversing via Facebook for years, and then he blew me away. he wrote my life story. And it’s pretty damn good. It’s breath taking, well written, and sounds like a movie script for my life. You can check it out online here:
Speaking of Life story, we also filmed my semi-fictional autobiography, called BLACK WOLF. We did this while you’ve been busy missing me, and fighting Trump. The world premiere is June 19th. Here’s some snippets:
SO NOW, THIS…..
In 1986, fresh outta grad school, I gathered together my co workers from WOSU RADIO, and NPR affiliate, and we shot a little film called TREASURE OF THE NINJA. I produced about 50 copies, packaged them up, jumped in my car and sold them store to store. I then picked up a phone book for the New York metro area, called video stores in Brooklyn, Bronx, Queens and sold them through mail order. Within two years, the sales stopped. I figure it was over.
Flash forward about 30 years. I started noticing people selling copies of the film on Ebay for big bucks. Then it started. I was getting email from people all over the planet, asking if I had more copies. Then a company called Massacre Video asked if i wanted to do a retro VHS re-lease. Sales were decent, nothing earth shattering. Well, that died down and again I figured it was over. Again.
Then an online article from the Urban Action Film Showcase did a complete review of the film and praised me for being an early black pioneer in martial arts films. Hmmm. Something was happening.
Then late last year I got a call from The American Film Genre Archive asking if I wanted to do a blu ray retrospective of the film. It was then it finally hit me: I was, surprisingly, a cult sensation. People all over the planet had been looking for copies of the film, and had been wondering what happened to me.
Well, on June 27, Treasure of the Ninja will be released on blu ray, along with several of my other early work on blu ray through Vinegar Syndrome releasing. I’m honored, speechless, and my Instagram blew the fuck up minutes after the release was announced.
Cult sensation. 40 years later. You can’t make this shit up.
I’m back. How you doin’?