ByJerome Maida, writer at
Jerome Maida

"The Martial Arts Kid" is a film launching on Kickstarter on Monday, April 21 and is co-headlined by two martial arts legends – and you can't get a more natural or bankable pair for a Kickstarter than these two icons.

The legendary "Dragons" are back - and martial arts fans are sure to be stoked and willing to pledge.

Cynthia "Lady Dragon" Rothrock ("China O'Brien") and Don "The Dragon" Wilson ("Bloodfist") are teaming up as the co-headliners in a new film, "The Martial Arts Kid". It is Rothrock's first action/martial arts film as a lead since 2004's "Sci-Fighter" and Don Wilson's first action/martial arts film as a lead since 2007's "The Last Sentinel".

Rothrock and Wilson, who have starred in over 75 action/martial-arts films combined, will play the aunt and uncle of a troubled teen who moves to a beach town in Florida after the death of his mother. They both teach him martial arts as a way to heal and to protect those he cares about and himself.

The teen has not yet been cast, but other major roles that have include TJ Storm ("Black Cobra") as the opposing instructor to the "Kid" and Matthew Ziff ("Six Gun Savior") as the bully and tormentor of the "Kid". Other roles already confirmed are Natasha Blasick ("Meet The Spartans", Sasha on "Days of our Lives") and Tara Cardinal ("Legend of the Red Reaper"), Inga Van Ardenn ("Crossing Shadows"), comic Graham Elwood ("Cram"), Jeff Behar, Adrienne Camille ("The Devil's Dozen"), Daniel Moncada ("Sabotage"), Sofya Skya ("Assassins Run") and Vicki Vodar ("Cross Threads") .

The Kickstarter for the film begins today, April 21. Those who are interested in pledging can click on the following link:

A pledge for as little as $5 will earn a thank you in the film's credits, as well as a thanks by e-mail, Facebook and Twitter, while a pledge of $10,000 or more will entitle the giver to becoming an Executive Producer of "The Martial Arts Kid", VIP treatment throughout the entire filming process, goodies and perks associated with all lower donations and an invite to the wrap party as a super special guest. There are 21 pledge levels in all, each with certain benefits and perks.

"Casting is ongoing for many roles. This is the beginning", says James Wilson, Don's brother, who along with former kickboxing champion Cheryl Wheeler Duncan is producing the film.

James Wilson says they already have enough funds to proceed, but are hoping to raise more than an average direct-to-video flick would require, with the intention of the film being shown theatrically.

" We are using Kickstarter as a tool to raise EXTRA funds and as a promotional tool", James Wilson adds. "We also want to prove that there is a large demand for a true martial arts films with people like Don & Cynthia."

Composer/songwriter Martin Blasick, who gained serious Oscar consideration for his work on "Magic Mike" - is a contributing songwriter. Emmy award winning composer Boris Zelkin is doing the soundtrack. Cinematographer Denis Maloney is on board as DP. He shot "The Contender" with Jeff Bridges, Joan Allen & Gary Oldmann, and "No Vacancy" with Timothy Olyphant & Christina Riccci. Michael Baumgarten is the Director and screenwriter . He is an award-winning screenwriter notably for "Smitty" with Peter Fonda, Mira Sorvino & Lou Gossett Jr.

"I don't think people are going to be able to ignore this movie", says Wheeler-Duncan. "It's just got too many great components to it. I've worked on so many great films. This is going to be a project made with love."

"It's a little different from the films we've done in the past", says Rothrock, the Queen of Martial Arts Films. ""I feel really good about it. This is going to be one of those films that looks like it will have enough of a budget and enough care to make sure everything is done the right way. From the script to the casting to the music we use in certain scenes, James and Cheryl are making sure every detail is taken into account and that everyone is putting forth their best effort into making a great film. That's very exciting to me."


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