Hello, hello, hello, sports fans!
This is David A. Barrios again, with AndersonVision. Last week, I was able to speak to Hector Echavaria, world renowned martial artist, kickboxer, actor and now, director. Hector and I spoke about his career, life experiences, the move from kick boxing into acting, his directorial experiences and his style of direction.
D.B for AV: What made you want to go into the martial arts? What event or influence brought you into it?
HE: Well, I started the martial arts when I was four. I used be to very sick with asthma and of course, we tried every medicine. And the doctors then told me that I had to start exercising. We went to a specialist to look into acupuncture and he told us that he had a new exercise that had just gotten popular at that time that could help. Well, that was kung-fu. Martial arts kind of saved my life.
DB for AV: So you started with kung-fu. What form of the martial arts do you practice now?
HE: Yes, I started off with kung fu at the beginning but then I went into every other area. I was training eight to ten hours a day. Right now, I practice a mixed version using bit of everything that works for me.
DB for AV: What would you call the turning point in your martial arts career?
HE: I think that when I won my first kickboxing world championship, I think that that was huge. One of the big moments for me was just training Quentin [Jackson] for his huge fight. I dont have a favorite one.
DB for AV: What makes you want to do the transition into films?
HE: I did a lot of TV while I was in Argentina [Echavarias home country] and I had my own comic books and action figures. I was very popular with my success. Then I saw a few years ago how well the Latino Market was doing in the United States and I just decided that Id take a chance here.
DB for AV: I see youre working on three films now.
HE: Thats right. [The films are: Duel of Legends, Never Surrender & Death Warrior]. We just finished filming the first movie, Never Surrender a week ago. Then Im off to Canada at the 20th of November to shoot Death Warrior. And then well finish Duel of Legends. Were aiming for a more gritty and bloody and real view in the action and the cast is filled with great martial artists like Quentin, etc,
DB for AV: I was actually going to ask about that; what is your opinion about action and martial arts and the way that they are represented in the movies? Is it done properly?
HE: I think that theres a tremendous opportunity to bring to the screen some real martial arts. I think we can go back to the old, bloody, real movies that everyone loves. Not like this new cartoonish-flying around the room whatsoever for no purpose what so ever.
DB for AV: You mean the whole Hong Kong, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon stuff?
HE: Yes. I think it was fine for one or two movies and then they over did it to the point that now its become ridiculous. Its time to move back to the old, bloody style
DB for AV: A gritty realism?
HE: Exactly. Of course, to move that way, it doesnt mean that the choreography has to be boring. For example, my film, Never Surrender, I just cant wait for audiences to see the choreography. Really incredible yet it still is real and tough and spectacular.
Of course, Id like to thank Hector for taking the time to talk to us. I wish him the best.
This is David from Andersonvision signing off. Ba ba booey.