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20th Century Fox

15 Facts About Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li

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20th Century Fox

No matter how many times you’ve defeated M. Bison with a devastating spinning bird kick, you can always learn something new about Street Fighter.

1. Producer Ashok Amritraj had never heard of Street Fighter—his kids introduced him to the property and told him it might make a good movie. Amritraj disregarded the original 1994 film adaptation and envisioned The Legend of Chun-Li as a prequel to the Street Fighter II video game.

2. Director Andrzej Bartkowiak, on the other hand, cut his teeth on video game adaptations. Before The Legend of Chun-Li, he directed the 2005 big-screen version of the popular video game series Doom.

3. Actor Jean-Claude Van Damme, who starred in the 1994 Street Fighter adaptation, received an offer to headline the sequel alongside his Universal Soldier co-star Dolph Lundgren. Van Damme turned down the offer because he thought his performance as Guile in the original was too embarrassing to repeat.

4. Robin Shou, who plays Gen in The Legend of Chun-Li, is no stranger to video game film adaptations. He appeared as Liu Kang in both Mortal Kombat movies and also played a character called “Pirate Leader” in the lesser-known video game movie DOA: Dead or Alive. The character he plays in The Legend of Chun-Li first appeared in the original Street Fighter game as a non-selectable character.

5. The original Street Fighter arcade game was released in 1987. But Chun-Li wasn’t introduced until 1991’s Street Fighter II.

6. Chun-Li’s name means “spring beauty” in Mandarin.

7. Street Fighter II also marked the first appearance of the villainous M. Bison; he was an unplayable boss character

8. Actor Neil McDonough based M. Bison’s mannerisms on mogul Richard Branson.

9. Vega is played by Taboo from the hip-hop group the Black Eyed Peas. He wasn’t the only member of the group to make the jump to movies in 2009; Will.i.am appeared in X-Men Origins: Wolverine that same year.

10. The exterior of Chun-Li’s house—which was supposed to be located in Hong Kong—was actually filmed at one of the ancillary houses in Bangkok’s Grand Palace. The production was only given limited access to shoot on the lawn and the porch because of the building’s importance: it holds the ashes of four generations of Thai kings.  

11. The exterior of M. Bison’s Shadaloo headquarters is not a set. The production found the location at a university outside of Bangkok.

12. All of the guns that appear in the movie are real. The Thai government gave the production access to its arsenal.

13. The credits list different U.S. and Japanese names for three characters. In Japan, Vega is Balrog, M. Bison is Vega, and Balrog is M. Bison. The switcheroo stems from a potential personality rights issue from the video game. The original Japanese boxer character named M. Bison meant “Mike Bison,” a play on the name of real-life boxer Mike Tyson. When Street Fighter was released in America, the game’s developer, Capcom, rearranged the names to avoid a potential likeness lawsuit from Tyson.

14. Most of the fight scenes use extensive wirework coordinated by famed fight choreographer Dion Lam, who previously worked on the Matrix trilogy. In the alleyway fight scene, two 11-foot cranes held actress Kristen Kreuk, who plays Chun-Li, in place. Kreuk says her experience as a gymnast helped her get used to being suspended from the uncomfortable rig for hours at a time during shooting.

15. The filmmakers made sure to insert certain characters’ signature moves from the video games into the movie, including Chun-Li’s “spinning bird kick” in the nightclub fight and M. Bison’s “power punch and kick” during the final battle. Chun-Li’s wardrobe and hairstyle during the nightclub scene were meant as an homage to the look of the video game character as well.

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Art
Artist Makes Colorful Prints From 1990s VHS Tapes

A collection of old VHS tapes offers endless crafting possibilities. You can use them to make bird houses, shelving units, or, if you’re London-based artist Dieter Ashton, screen prints from the physical tape itself.

As Co.Design reports, the recent London College of Communication graduate was originally intrigued by the art on the cover of old VHS and cassette tapes. He planned to digitally edit them as part of a new art project, but later realized that working with the ribbons of tape inside was much more interesting.

To make a print, Ashton unravels the film from cassettes and VHS tapes collected from his parents' home. He lets the strips fall randomly then presses them into tight, tangled arrangements with the screen. The piece is then brought to life with vibrant patterns and colors.

Ashton has started playing with ways to incorporate themes and motifs from the films he's repurposing into his artwork. If the movie behind one of his creations isn’t immediately obvious, you can always refer to its title. His pieces are named after movies like Backdraft, Under Siege, and that direct-to-video Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen classic Passport to Paris.

Screen print made from an old VHS tape.

Screen print made from an old VHS tape.

Screen print made from an old VHS tape.

Screen print made from an old VHS tape.

Screen print made from an old VHS tape.

Screen print made from an old VHS tape.

[h/t Co.Design]

All images courtesy of Dieter Ashton

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Pop Culture
5 Bizarre Comic-Con News Stories from Years Past
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At its best, Comic-Con is a friendly place where like-minded people can celebrate their pop culture obsessions, and each other. And no one can make fun of you, no matter how lazy your cosplaying might be. You might think that at its worst, it’s just a series of long lines of costumed fans and small stores crammed into a convention center. But sometimes, throwing together 100,000-plus people from around the world in what feels like a carnival-type atmosphere where anything goes can have less than stellar results. Here are some highlights from past Comic-Con-tastrophes.

1. MAN IN HARRY POTTER T-SHIRT STABS ANOTHER MAN IN THE FACE—WITH A PEN

In 2010, two men waiting for a Comic-Con screening of the Seth Rogen alien comedy Paul got into a very adult argument about whether one of them was sitting too close to the other. Unable to come to a satisfactory conclusion with words, one man stabbed the other in the face with a pen. According to CNN, the attacker was led away wearing handcuffs and a Harry Potter T-shirt. In the aftermath, some Comic-Con attendees dealt with the attack in an oddly fitting way: They cosplayed as the victim, with pens protruding from bloody eye sockets.

2. MEMORABILIA THIEVES INVADE NEW YORK

Since its founding in 2006, New York Comic Con has attracted a few sticky-fingered attendees. In 2010, a man stole several rare comics from vendor Matt Nelson, co-founder of Texas’ Worldwide Comics. Just one of those, Whiz Comics No. 1, was worth $11,000, according to the New York Post. A few years later, in 2014, someone stole a $2000 “Dunny” action figure, which artist Jon-Paul Kaiser had painted during the event for Clutter magazine. And those are just the incidents that involved police; lower-scale cases of toys and comics disappearing from booths are an increasingly frustrating epidemic, according to some. “Comic Con theft is an issue we all sort of ignore,” collector Tracy Isenhour wrote on the blog of his company, Needless Essentials, in 2015. “I am here to tell you no more. It’s time for this garbage to stop."

3. CATWOMAN SAVES THE DAY

John Sciulli/Getty Images for Xbox

Adrianne Curry, winner of the first cycle of America’s Next Top Model, has made a career of chasing viral fame. Ironically, it was at Comic-Con in 2014 that Curry did something truly worthy of attention—though there wasn’t a camera in sight. Dressed as Catwoman, she was posing with fans alongside her friend Alicia Marie, who was dressed as Tigra. According to a Facebook post Marie wrote at the time, a fan tried to shove his hands into her bikini bottoms. She screamed, the man ran off, and Curry jumped to action. She “literally took off after dude WITH her Catwoman whip and chased him down, beat his a**,” Marie wrote. “Punched him across the face with the butt of her whip—he had zombie blood on his face—got on her costume.”

4. MAN POSES AS FUGITIVE-SEEKING INVESTIGATOR TO GET INTO VIP ROOM

The lines at Comic-Con are legendary, so one Utah man came up with a novel way to try and skip them altogether. In 2015, Jonathon M. Wall tried to get into Salt Lake Comic Con’s exclusive VIP enclave (normally a $10,000 ticket) by claiming he was an agent with the Air Force Office of Special Investigations, and needed to get into the VIP room “to catch a fugitive,” according to The San Diego Union Tribune. Not only does that story not even come close to making sense, it also adds up to impersonating a federal agent, a crime to which Wall pleaded guilty in April of this year and which carried a sentence of up to three years in prison and a $250,000 fine. In June, prosecutors announced that they were planning to reduce his crime from a felony to a misdemeanor.

5. MAN WALKS 645 MILES TO COMIC-CON, DRESSED AS A STORMTROOPER, TO HONOR HIS LATE WIFE

Michael Buckner/Getty Images for Disney

In 2015, Kevin Doyle walked 645 miles along the California coast to honor his late wife, Eileen. Doyle had met Eileen relatively late in life, when he was in his 50s, and they bonded over their shared love of Star Wars (he even proposed to her while dressed as Darth Vader). However, she died of cancer barely a year after they were married. Adrift and lonely, Doyle decided to honor her memory and their love of Star Wars by walking to Comic-Con—from San Francisco. “I feel like I’m so much better in the healing process than if I’d stayed home,” he told The San Diego Union Tribune.

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