Our first photos from AMC's new martial arts series, Into the Badlands
One good thing which may come from AMC scrambling to fill the void left by Breaking Bad and Mad Men is that they will take chances on projects that may not have been given a second look otherwise. One of the several new series that AMC has taken a chance on is Into the Badlands, a martial arts drama which is loosely based on the classic Chinese novel Journey to the West.
The martial arts series has been created by Al Gough and Miles Millar (Smallville) and Entertainment Weekly spoke with Gough who mentioned that the show will focus on making the on-screen martial arts as authentic as possible:
What we really wanted to do was authentic martial arts. A lot of shows tend to do a version of authentic martial arts, and they execute it very well—but in Hong Kong, you see the people, you see the martial artists doing the moves. It’s like watching a dance. So what we have here is a full-time martial arts fight unit that Stephen Fung [an EP and Hong Kong actor] is directing. And that’s something that was very important to us, to get the right people to do it and that it’s authentic. I think when people see these fights, they haven’t seen them on television before. They’re not 35- or 40-second fights. They’re three-minute fights, and I gotta tell you, three minutes is a long time to do a martial arts fight.
For whatever reason the martial arts genre isn't one that has thrived on television as much as others have, but if Into the Badlands can pull it off, I think they'll find that many people are hungry for quality martial arts drama on the small screen. Al Gough seems quite excited to be leading the genre's return to television:
We have this wonderful tradition to pull from, an amazing cast led by Daniel, and it’s an original creation and we hope people embrace it. It’s fresh territory, there’s a huge fan base for martial arts films, it’s just an amazing part of cinema. It’s an open field, which is both incredibly exciting and king of daunting, but that’s how it should be.
Into the Badlands, which is currently shooting in New Orleans, has been given a six-episode order by AMC and should premiere in late 2015.
Will you be tuning in?