Sunday, December 4, 2016

Beyond Fest 2016: Big Trouble In Little China w/ Kurt Russell & James Gunn

The first film to sell out at Beyond Fest this year was a repertory screening of 1986's John Carpenter classic Big Trouble In Little China. I was honored to provide the write up on the BF website for one of my favorite films as one of my favorite actors, Kurt Russell, would be appearing for a post film conversation with Guardians of the Galaxy filmmaker James Gunn. Big Trouble sold out in less than a day and of course my most anticipated evening of the festival. I had no idea Russell would be attending the film and as a Russell film naming contest took place to introduce the night, I ran to the bathroom and saw the man standing in a hallway seemingly by himself. Caught by surprise I locked eyes with the film icon, inexplicably pointed at him and fist pumped as he smiled and waved. This would be the third time seeing Russell live and I'd actual met the guy briefly a while back and he was just as cool and funny as you'd want him to be.

Big Trouble In Little China holds up now better than ever, it's irreverent sense of humor mixed with mysticism soaked action, big sets, crazy costumes, whip fast banter and perfect cast is a one of a kind crowd pleaser. Russell and Gunn sat and watched the film and came down after where Russell was only too happy to view the film after such a long time with an audience who appreciated it. He looked back with nothing but fond memories, recalling that everyday on set was something cool to see, something cool to do and cool people to be around. The leading man gave director John Carpenter total credit for the esteem Escape From New York, The Thing, Big Trouble, et al are held in and shared that neither he nor Dwayne Johnson brought up the proposed remake The Rock is looking to produce and star in while the two worked together on Furious 8. Russell saw Jack Burton as a mix of himself, Jack Nicholson, John Wayne and the kind of guy you didn't ask for his opinion but shared it anyway. Russell shared several stories of being a young actor and how Fox executives didn't know what to do with the film, fools! Russell also dropped gems like "ifs, and's and Peter Pan's" aknd the classic "that guy knows what fucking time it is".

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