This isn’t the kind of news we normally like to report here at FSR, namely because it’s almost entirely lacking in details. But it’s good news, so I’m bucking the system and saying the hell with the rules.
Per the sexy folks over at Twitch, the word on the street is that Tony Jaa is prepping to return to the screen with a non-Thai production. The rumors contain no mention of the film, the role, or anything else aside from two very enticing details. It will be a Hong Kong production, and Sammo Hung will be handling the fight choreography. Hung is well known as an actor and director in his own right, but recent years have seen his work as an action director and fight choreographer take center stage. Donnie Yen’s excellent Ip Man films and Andy Lau’s fantastic Detective Dee & the Mystery Of the Phantom Flame are the most recent examples, and they bode well for anything he touches going forward.
Jaa burst onto the scene in 2003 with Ong-bak, but over the course of six years and only three other lead roles he managed to lose almost as many fans as he gained thanks to odd outbursts, self-imposed isolation, and other behaviors that fall under the umbrella of ‘hissy fit meltdown.’ There’s no denying the man’s athleticism and fighting skill, but he’s at his best when those are his only concerns. (Well, he might want to dedicate a little bit of time to an acting class too.) If he’s open to letting someone else, especially someone as talented as Hung, take over the reigns of choreographer then hopefully he’ll do the same for the writer/director roles as well. Even at this stage this is exciting news, and hopefully we’ll be hearing more soon.