Jai White introduces new martial art in 'As Good As Dead'
Jai White introduces new martial art in 'As Good As
Dead' - 15th December 2022
Jai White said he employed a new martial art style
in his movie As Good As Dead, in theaters and on video-on-demand
showing a style that's called Defence Lab Systems,"
White told UPI in a recent Zoom interview. "The
person who really developed it a little deeper is
a guy named Michel Quach, who did choreography on
of White's martial arts from movies like Blood and
Bone, Black Dynamite and the Never Back Down sequels
will notice White, 55, striking new poses. He holds
his elbows up to his face instead of putting up his
fists, and strikes with those elbows.
is a self-defense type of scenario," White said.
"The average person would have no idea what to
do in a street fight if I covered like that."
wrote As Good as Dead and plays Bryant, a loner living
on the Mexican border. A local youth, Oscar (Luca
Oriel), asks Bryant to train him to defend himself
against street gangs.
Oscar uses Bryant's signature style in a paid ring
bout, Bryant's former associates recognize it and
come looking for Bryant, who once again must confront
the violent past he left behind.
of As Good as Dead's fight scenes was inspired by
a real-life incident from White's youth. In the film,
bad guys chase Bryant up a hill until they are too
exhausted to fight back.
when I was in New York, a gang chased me and about
four other guys," White said. "We got maybe
five blocks away and noticed there were only three
guys following us."
story of As Good As Dead is also inspired by White's
brother, who lived in Mexico with his family. Miguel
Angel Saldana died of COVID-19 one month before production
began on As Good As Dead, and the film is dedicated
brother was supposed to be my Spanish coach because
I wanted to speak half the movie in Spanish,"
said he also took a cue from his real-life mentor
role in martial arts gyms in depicting Bryant's relationship
with Oscar. White said once he earned a black belt,
and teaching newer students came with the territory.
I'm there an extra half an hour after I work out because
I can't turn away somebody who really wants to learn
something," White said. "I've been a martial
arts instructor for over 40 years now."
martial arts career predates his movie career, which
began in 1989. He had supporting roles in '90s action
movies like On Deadly Ground, 2 Days in the Valley
and Universal Soldier: The Return.
played the title character in the comic book adaptation,
Spawn, and played Mike Tyson in a 1995 TV movie. While
developing his own vehicles, which he sometimes directs,
as well, White had roles in dramas like Why Did I
Get Married? and its sequel, and the TV comedy, Insecure.
launched Jaigantic Studios last year, and Jaigantic
produced As Good As Dead. The studio also has completed
the western, The Outlaw Johnny Black, for which White
is planning a theatrical release.
directed, co-wrote with Byron Minns and played the
I say, it is a action-western-blaxploitation-faith-based
romantic comedy," White said. "It's a totally
promised The Outlaw Johnny Black still would showcase
his martial arts skills, though he plays a western
project that unfortunately has stalled is a Black
Dynamite sequel. White voiced the character in an
animated series, but has been sitting on a live-action
sequel script for more than 10 years.
think it's better than the original script,"
White said. "There's one other producer who can
hold things up. Unfortunately, when you have these
partnerships, they gotta align."
the immediate future, White is focusing on Jaigantic
Studios and its productions. After decades in the
industry, White is betting on himself.
been making money for other entities," White
said. "So, now it's time to focus on my investors
-- people who invest in my brand."