Growing up, I have been exposed to two cultures, by
embracing them, I’ve learned to appreciate the differences and the
similarities of each. Hence, they’ve molded me into who I am now.
In Asian culture, we use martial art novels as our pastime just like
in the Western culture the way it uses comic books. The similarities
are there: the good guys have ‘incredible’ powers and fight for
In Asian culture, the marital art novels are called Wuxia, these are
books written by period scholars that talk about how this and that
person after getting an incredible amount of martial art skills
became invincible or ascended to become a God. Just like in Comic
Books, a Wuxia character can ‘jump and leap over buildings’ like
Superman would. Another Wuxia character uses his wit and martial art
skills to solve and stop crimes, just like Batman did.
As a filmmaker, the way I was brought up in the society, has built
me to become who I am now, and as you have probably seen most of my
films, I’ve always challenge myself with actions, martial arts, and
artistically styled films that help me grow.
As I grow between the two cultures: Having a family value and
tradition of a descendent of a martial art family and my exposure to
the comic book worlds, I can say I’ve had the best of both worlds.
Back in 2003, I made a parody fan film that got me a bit of name
brand with the independent and comic book fans, A Joker’s Card was
shown to over 20+ festivals and conventions. With its success, it
prompted me to create a feature film The Rapture, that was
distributed worldwide to several countries.
As I returned back to do another fan film, this time, I wanted to
make it dark, without the comedy, and was more in the character and
the action sequence and able to challenge me to draw in my artistic
Superman was the character I decided to venture into. Not only is he
a superhero everyone knows, he is also my hero. Superman is not just
an Alien living on Earth, but he is an Alien that tries to do the
best as a good human being, maybe like a poster child for the entire
human race. He gets angry but yet, he has a heart and compassion
that not many of us can hold and claim as our own I grew up loving
him, although I am not a ‘hard core’ comic book fan, I would always
watch the cartoons, the movies, the TV series and enjoy every minute
The challenge of making a movie about someone that everyone knows is
that no matter how you make the film, people will either love it or
hate it, and not usually just have a “neutral” interest. This is
because Superman has become a subculture of our society, and each
individual has his own “mold” of what Superman is and is about. For
me to venture into this legend, it is almost feels like getting into
a firing range and hoping that the bullets miss me… And like
Superman, I would have to have a body of steel and not be weakened
by the words and sometimes, personal attacks people would throw at
me after finishing watching the short film.
That’s the MAIN obstacle I would face by doing a Superman Fan Film.
The second, would be how to convey the story. Fans all over the
world have what they like and dislike. For me, making S is more
about having fun, creating a ‘universe’ that is different, so I
opted to shoot most of it on a green screen, as we wanted to be able
to make our hero fly. Next, we added wire-harnesses, that make
flying more possible or in-the-air fight sequences fun. Lastly, I
decided to make the background ala comic book style. I can easily
make the background as realistic as possible but why when it would
be easier to shoot the entire short film on location with harnesses
hooked on above. Shooting on a green screen allows me have more
creative and artistic expression. So after considerable time
discussing with our friends, cast, and crew: the decision was made
to make it a color two dimensional comic styled background. After
all, it is a universe we created for OUR Superman.
I hope you enjoy the short film. This is our interpretati