THE PAPER TIGERS Video Interview: Actors Alain Uy, Ron Yuan and Mykel Shannon Jenkins on Their Inspiring Kung Fu Comedy
In the 1980s and 1990s, three promising young kung fu fighters trained with the notorious Sifu Cheung (Roger Yuan), becoming his only official disciples. However, their story didn’t have a great outcome; currently the so-called Three Tigers have other concerns, kung fu is a mere memory for them.
Danny (Alain Uy) is a divorced father, more focused on his day job than on his little son (Joziah Lagonoy). Hing (Ron Yuan) gained weight and never fully recovered from an accident that damaged one of his legs. Jim (Mykel Shannon Jenkins) is the Tiger who has stayed in better shape, though he now practices Brazilian jiu jitsu.
Our protagonists meet again after their former teacher and father figure passes away, apparently of a heart attack, although there could be a murkier context.
Directed by Quoc Bao Tran, The Paper Tigers follows three martial artists who return to action. When facing the new generation of fighters, or their old rival Carter (Matthew Page) – who did remain linked to kung fu– the Three Tigers see how their bodies no longer respond like before. Their best years are behind them, so they'll have to overcome adversity to make peace with their past, honor their master and become heroes.
The Paper Tigers is genuinely funny and it perfectly showcases the charisma of its protagonists, becoming a particularly inspiring and satisfying film about the classic kung fu underdogs.
I interviewed Uy, Yuan and Shannon Jenkins, the stars of The Paper Tigers. They talked about the comedic side of the film, the challenges of shooting fight sequences on a budget, the life lessons that kung fu offers, and more. You can watch the interview below.
The Paper Tigers is now in Theaters and on Demand from Well Go USA.