Fantastic Fest 2019 Interview – IRON FISTS & KUNG FU KICKS director Serge Ou

“The film is about the surprising influence Kung Fu cinema has had on movie making and popular culture.  It’s a love letter to the cinema of the underdog.” Director Serge Ou on IRON FISTS & KUNG FU KICKS which is screening at Fantastic Fest 2019! 

Congratulations on your film playing in at Fantastic Fest this year! Is your first time at FF and are you planning to attend your screenings?

Yes, my first time at Fantastic Fest and an honour to be in the mix with this film.  Yes, I’ll be at the screenings and please be kind, I’m only human.

So how did you get into this movie-making business? 

Dad buys son a Super 8 camera. I know you’ve heard it all before, but true.

How did this project come together for you? Give me a rundown from the preparation, to shooting, to post-production to now!

The whole production was really compressed because of some contracting issues, so we lost about four months.  From start of shooting to picture lock was only five months. Hectic. It was premiering at the Melbourne International Film Festival, so no leeway.

What keeps you going while making a movie? What drives you? 

In relation to the last question – caffeine and a healthy sense of humour.

What was your biggest challenge with this project, and the moment that was the most rewarding to you?

Time was the challenge…isn’t it always, but the most rewarding was the great response on opening night.

I’m about to get technical, but I would love to know about the visual design of the movie; what camera did you film with, your relationship to the director of photography and how the movie was photographed.

We shot on the Sony F55.  The DP, Geoff Ellis and I have worked together for years and shooting is always a joy.  The edit I love; I have also worked with the editor, Chris Bamford, for years; the visual style of the film is really our vernacular, energetic and fast, like the subject matter of the documentary.

What are you looking forward to the most about showing your movie to audiences here in Austin?

Fantastic Fest audiences are notorious for their love of film; I’m looking forward to the audiences and I hope they dig the film.

After the film screens at SxSW, where is the film going to show next? Theatrical, online, more festivals?

Its just had a run of festival screenings.  After Fantastic Fest, it;’s off to Sitges in Spain, then an SVOD/sell thru/iTunes window and then to Netflix at the end of the year.

If you could show your movie in any theatre outside of Austin, where would you screen it and why?

Hong Kong; the origins of the subject matter of the film are echoing through history as we speak.

All of Fantastic Fest is taking place at the Alamo Drafthouse, which is famous for enforcing its no talking or texting policies. What would you say to someone who was being disruptive through a movie?

That would never happen in a FF audience from what I’ve heard.

We have a lot of readers on our site looking to make movies or get into the industry somehow. What is the ONE THING you would say to someone who is wanting to get into the filmmaking business?

Figure out what you want to do, find out if you’re good at it and persevere.

Fantastic Fest takes place from September 19th to 28th. For more information on this film and the many others playing in Austin, TX, point your browser to

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