All the pics displayed in this blogs are from the author's private collection or just snapshots from his private movie collection. Whenever I use another web's or person's pics, it will be always mentioned.

Feel free to use the information or pics showed but please ask for permission or just remember to add the source wherever you use them. THANKS

Todas las fotos mostradas en este blog pertenecen a la colección privada del autor o son capturas de las películas de la misma colección. En caso de usar material de otra persona o web, siempre será mencionada su procedencia.
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martes, 19 de abril de 2011

Pedro Ernyes: The Colombian Connection at IFD & Filmark

Among the supporting western actors seen in dozens IFD & FILMARK movies there are a group of them who always catch the attention of the audience because they can play just a mere extra in a film & then a main role in another film or just a supporting role at IFD & main actor at Filmark. Pedro Ernyes, a colombia-born guy, was one of them. Maybe the most important one.

I am not sure but Eric / Joe Redner could also be another alyas for Pedro Ernyes.

Pedro Ernyes was first seen as extra in Ronnie Yu's LEGACY OF RAGE, the first film Brandon Lee played in Hong Kong. Ernyes has some screen time as a jail prisonner along other IFD & Filmark actors and opposite to the other ones, Ernyes was not ever seen again on more Hong Kong movies but he became a big figure at IFD & Filmark for several reasons.

Ernyes shared the screen with Stuart Smith, Jonathan Isgar & other Louis Roth's students many many times

After his experience on Legacy of Rage, Pedro Ernyes started a fruitful career on IFD doing many supporting roles in movies like Ninja Champion, Challenge the ninja, The ultimate ninja & many more movies starred by the "Louis Roth's actors team". But Ernyes was not only interested on playing his acting skills in front of the camera. Behind the scenes he recruited new talents ( backpackers & travellers) from Mirador Mansions & Chungking Mansions to play on IFD & Filmark productions. He became an agent for Joseph Lai & Tomas Tang & he used to collect 10 HK$ /hour out of the 50HK$ / hour the actors used to earn for his services.

Pedro Ernyes was too active in front & behind the scene for several years in Garley Gallery, the building where IFD & Filmark office were located back then.

His "behind the scenes" jobs, made him a bit unpopular among the other regular IFD / Filmark actors. Some people remember him as a shady character, others say he became dodgey & unreliable. Even so, he was able to pass from supporting roles at IFD to play main roles at Filmark playing the villain in movies such as Silver Dragon Ninja or The thundering ninja; in both movies he played an evil ninja who wants to control the world in the same way Fu-Manchu wanted to do the same.
Ernyes as Roger Kinski, the evil ninja who wants to control the world in Silver Dragon Ninja

His last role as ninja was at Ocean Shores NINJA VS NINJA, a movie that tried to imitate IFD & Fiilmark ways using a previously released movie just adding new scenes. Pedro Ernyes, as I stated above, became into an important guy for IFD & Filmark: he was an actor, he was an agent, he was clever to ask to his "recruits" to bring more friends with them & then he changed his acting skills for dubbing so he formed a team of dubbers at Filmark.

As always, he played another power-hungry ninja in Ocean Shores's Ninja Vs Ninja against Eric Neff who also played a role in Silver Dragon Ninja

Pedro Ernyes as most of regular actors / technicians at IFD & Filmark used several names during his stage as actor in both IFD & Filmark as well as his time as dubbing director. So we have him credited as Pedro Ernyes on IFD title credits, as Pedro Hughes on Filmark & then as Pedro Massobrio when he was dubbing at Tomas Tang's company.

Ouch! Last night dinner was deadlier than any ninja weapon!

Oh, one last thing. It was told Pedro Ernyes was the one who spread the rumour of the disappearance / death of Pierre Kirby during a yatch trip to the Philippines. Was it true? False?

If only we could contact Mr Ernyes to confirm it!!!!

lunes, 11 de abril de 2011

Tomas Tang's Crime Target

Not too long ago, Spannick a member of Cinehound uploaded some magnificent pressbooks of IFD & Filmark. I was told about this by some good friends as Jack & Ninjanixon about this wonderful present Spannick kindly offered to all of us.

I was very surprised to find out many FILMARK pressbooks that belongs to some movies I didn't know they existed! I didn't have idea Tomas Tang produced titles like Top Secret or Fatal Command. But the one catched my attention was CRIME TARGET.

The art design is the usual Filmark International design showing us exploding helicopters, people running away from explosions or bullets & huge weapons.

Then, inside we can see the synopsis, some snapshots from the original movie & many pics of the western actors from the new added shots.

Then, finally, we see a pic from the original shot where we can appreciate the original thai source movie was from the end of the 70's or so... plus the Filmark contact address in Hong Kong located in the sadly famous Garley Gallery.

I thought the art cover was great & I remembered I had seen it before in a Thai movies web & it took my attention because it remembered me that Charlton Heston's classic Two-Minute Warning directed in 1976 by Larry Peerce.

So here, it is the orginal thai movie used by Tomas Tang to create his Crime Target, a 1980 production starred by Sombat Methanee. Tomas Tang was too lazy to create a new design for his new movie, he just used the same model as the original . Maybe he thought, no one outside Thailand will pay attention to this production.

Here you have the original synopsis we can read in

A police inspector has lost his wife during an intervention. Since that time, he is a lonely policeman and is well known to kill bad guys with one bullet only with his magnum 357. He has a new teammate, who is the daughter of the head of the police. During one intervention, he killed two men that are brothers of a third tough guy. This one promises to revenge his two dead brothers. The revenge fails and they take a school bus in hostage. The tough guys are working for Chatree who is a nightclub owner. Chatree's daughter is inside the group. They request the policeman to bring a ransom. They bury alive the inspector and Chatree's wife. Finally the inspector and his partner succeeds to get back the children. Maybe it is the Thai version of "Dirty Harry".

Now, the target is to locate both films!!!!!

sábado, 9 de abril de 2011

Jonathan Isgar & Christine Redmen: Butcher & Victim in Ninja Phantom Hero Usa

Ninja Phantom Hero Usa was the first ninja movie from Filmark I ever seen. I remember my mother rented me a kung fu movie from Asso Asia titled Snake Strikes back & the original trailer of Ninja Phantom was included at the begining of the tape. From that moment on, the faces of Jonathan Isgar, Glen Carson & Christine Redmen were kept on my mind, so just imagine my happiness when I saw Mr Isgar as the main villain in movies like Once Upon a Time in China, The Outlaw Brothers, Undeclared war just mention few of them.

This scene was cut for the american cut of Ninja Phantom Hero Usa

In the other hand, I just met Clarson in other Filmark movies but more. He dissapeared from screen as well as Christine Redmen did. Until I found her out as mere extra in Bloodsport.
Now, thanks to Jonathan Isgar, we know Christine Redmen was from Canada, a backpacker like many people who worked for Filmark who was lucky enough to be found & hired by Filmark casting directors who were always looking for western people through the hostels in Mirador Mansion & Chunking Mansions in Tsim Tsa Tsui.

Once more time, YouTube offers us another full-lengh movie. This time I found Ninja Phantom Hero Usa under its american title Ninja Empire & heavily cut because all the final showdown is dissapeared, including the scene where the evil Morris ( Jonathan Isgar) kills the undercover cop Christine.

Ninja Empire was just a re-edited & cut version of the great ninja phantom hero Usa

I rembember to my dear visitors & friends Ninja Phantom Hero Usa ( aka Ninja Empire) was done using a Hong Kong movie titled Struggle for Leader as main body, sharing some actors from the source movie in the new added shots like the great among greats Ho Pak kwong

viernes, 8 de abril de 2011

From Bloodsport to being killed by Jonathan Isgar: Christine Redmen

About one year ago, I wrote an entry in this humble blog about western actors who worked in Van Damme's Bloodsport as supporting actors or just mere extras but later they got main roles at IFD & Filmark. You may check it again clicking the link below

Now I would like to continue this post because I recently I have re-watched Bloodsport one more time & I have found more faces, names & nameless actors on this movie who later brighted on IFD & Filmark productions.

If I say the name of Christine Redmen, you may don't know who is that person, right? If I say the name of Christine Wells I suppose you may have the same indeferent feeling, right? Then who the hell is Christine Redmen/ Wells? To start with, we can tell she is the female main actress in NINJA PHANTOM HERO USA (aka Ninja Empire) one of the four ninja movies Jonathan Isgar played for Filmark and my favourite one.

Where I have seen this face before????

Christine Wells as she is credited in this Filmark production plays an undercover female cop who helps the hero Glen (Glen Carson) to fight against the evilish Morris (Jonathan Isgar). During the movie we know she is named Christine but nicknamed "Yellow bird". I don't know why but I liked her since the first time I watched Ninja Phantom Hero Usa. Maybe because not too many Filmark movies had women in leading roles to be killed ( except the one in Counter destroyer, aka Robovampire 2) or maybe because I got the feeling I had seen her in another movie but I could not remember which one....until yesterday!

A moustached Glen Carson was Jonathan Isgar's nemesis in 4 ninja movies from Filmark. Christine Redmen got a fatal destiny in Ninja Phantom hero Usa

Bloodsport was a shocking experience for me when I first saw it. A shocking experience but in the right way. I loved the movie because I saw many faces from kung movies playing modern day action, I loved the movie because it was shot in Hong Kong & I love Hong Kong so much as my own home & of course I enjoyed the action because the fighting scenes were superb, specially if you saw this movie on big screen as I did for the very first time!... then, yesterday, I had nothing to do after lunch & the babies were sleeping so I decided to watch Bloodsport again & then...She was there...yes...Christine Wells was in Bloodsport as Paulo Tocha, Eric Neff, Wayne Archer or Ken Boyle were...All of them got roles at IFD & Filmark so Christine "Yellow bird" Wells did!
I got you, Christine!!

Eating & having lunch happily in Bloodsport...

Just to be killed by Jonathan Isgar at the climax of Ninja Phantom, hero Usa

Christine Wells had her seconds of glory in bloodsport sharing the screen with Philip Chan, Forrest Whitaker & Norman Burton. After I realiced she was the main female star of Ninja Phantom hero Usa I tried to find her in more scenes along the running time of Bloodsport but it was in vain she had dissapeared from screen until the end title credits where she was credited under her real name: Christine Redmen

I have not more clues about Christine Redmen and her movie career because apart from her tiny cameo in Bloodsport & her role in Filmark's Ninja Phantom, hero Usa I haven't seen her in more productions. Any clue, information about her will be specially well appreciated.

martes, 5 de abril de 2011


Once again, I repeat I created this blog just to offer information about ASSO ASIA / IFD / FILMARK , their movies, the people involved on those productions, the places where they were shot...etc, BUT I will never upload copyrighted stuff nor even public domain movies.

Some months ago, while I was searching videos on Youtube, I found someone had uploaded Ninja Champion on its full-lengh running time. Now I have just found out another person has uploaded Ninja thunderbolt in its full lengh as well.

If you haven't seen it yet or you don't own a tape/ dvd, now there is a chance to watch it on YouTube

Ninja thunderbolt deserves a watch for many and different reasons being the most important Ninja Thunderbolt was the mother of all Ninja movies ever produced by IFD.

I would like to repeat, I have nothing to do with this, I just add the link to Youtube that allows people to watch the movie. I don't support piracy & I will never do.

lunes, 4 de abril de 2011

Curse of the IFD THUNDERBOLT series 8: Headsman Thunderbolt

It seems the word THUNDERBOLT was a lucky word to IFD Films since it has been the most used one on its movie titles since Joseph Lai started his own way without Tomas Tang after they closed Asso Asia. Most of 'Thunderbolt' movies had in common Richard Harrison, taiwanese (or taiwanese co-productions) movies as source movies, Philip Ko and decent edit work. Beyond the official Thunderbolt movies there were others that they have just re-titled & they have nothing to do with the previous ones. So checking IFD official catalog we can find this HEADSMAN THUNDERBOLT, a taiwanese action movie that lacks all the common features seen in other Thunderbolt movies.

Gangster 'a la' John Woo wearing black clothes & sun glasess, eroticsm & raw violence BUT it is not an original Thunderbolt movie!

To start with, Headsman thunderbolt is not dubbed into english & it doesn't have new added shots with western actors. Headsman thunderbolt is just an original taiwanese movie that has been retitled adding Thunderbolt word. The synopsis is just in chinese so we could say Headsman Thunderbolt is just for local market, not like the others that were edited & dubbed into english pointing to international sales.

Not a Thunderbolt movie, but I would really like to own a copy of this taiwanese movie.

Unluckily I don't have any kind of techinal details about this IFD production but whoever could be interested on it can check the trailer at IFD official website.

domingo, 3 de abril de 2011


When I started these entries dedicated to the THUNDERBOLT movies offered by IFD, I decided I would check Ninja Thunderbolt to close them just because Ninja Thunderbolt is my favourite among all the Thunderbolt titles for several reasons. Apart from that, Ninja Thunderbolt was the very first ninja movie ever designed by Joseph Lai & the one that caused the ninja invasion from Hong Kong & made IFD a well-known production company around the world video markets.

Spanish video art cover. I was bewitched by it the first time I grabbed the movie in my regular video rental shop!

The genesis of Ninja Thunderbolt started when Joseph Lai was in Cannes & he used to visit video rental shops & cinemas to check what audiences like; at the time Menahem Golam's ENTER THE NINJA was being screened and it was a big hit everywhere making Cannon Films & Sho Kosugi extremely popular among martial arts fans. Mr Lai knew he could offer similar products because Hong Kong was the best place to produce action / martial marts movies. Then, he went back to Hong Kong & told director Godfrey Ho they would produce ninja movies.

Trans World Entertainment produced some Sho Kosugi movies & distributed many IFD movies in the US.

Enter the ninja was starred by Franco Nero, an actor who was famous for his roles in some of the very best Spaguetti Western ever done in Europe, so Joseph Lai decided to hire another star from european western who was also very popular: Richard Harrison. Hiring spaguetti western actors to play modern day ninjas became into a habit in the industry because just a couple of years later legendary actor Lee Van Cleef was also casted as a ninja in the american TV Series THE MASTER.

Ninja Thunderbolt & it s source movie To catch a thief stars in an imaginary place that mixes locations from Japan, Taiwan & Hong Kong. Ah, the magic of co-productions!

Ninja Thunderbolt made Richard Harrison would become the most popular icon for IFD till today. In the other hand it also was the cause Richard Harrison decided to quit acting when he felt Lai & Ho cheated him with their working ways.

Pakistan art poster for Ninja Thunderbolt

Once Joseph Lai had decided to produce ninja movies, he had Godfrey Ho, Richard Harrison, the ideas but no budget to produce a full movie, then he bought the rights of an asian co-production (Hong Kong-Taiwan- Japan) ninja movie starred by Kurata Yasuaki, Wong Tao and a taiwanese actress named Barbara Yuen and added new fotage directed by Godfrey Ho & with Richard Harrison as the main character. The source movie used was To Catch a Thief ( aka Ninja & the Thief) directed in 1984 by Tommy Lee Gam Ming who had previously directed IMPOSSIBLE WOMAN ( aka Ninja Avenger), another ninja movie in taiwan with Kurata Yasuaki & Elsa Yeung.

I got my Ocean Shores VCD of To catch a thief (aka Ninja & the thief) during my time in Hong Kong in 2000. At that time when I found out Ocean shores had many source movies used by IFD, I started to hunt all of them down.

To Catch a Thief, as we stated above was a HK-Taiwanese-Japanese co-production & Tommy Lee Gam Ming did a superb work shooting diferent scenes from the different markets & this statement is easily confirmed when we check the different editions of this movie: To catch a thief is an action movie indeed ,but it was also full of sex scenes that were shot/ cut / edited in different ways to avoid censorship.
While the HK VCD of To catch a thief doesn't include even a naked body ( nor male nor female) the international cut used by IFD for Ninja Thunderbolt includes so many sex scenes shown in an almost hardcore porn way where we can appreciate the female naked bodies & even Kurata Yasuakis full frontal naked shots

Godfrey Ho??? Tommy Lee???? Both of them are the fathers of Ninja Thunderbolt while Joseph Lai was the stepfather...

The editing work done by Tommy Lee Gam Ming in the original movie & the editing work by IFD was so perfect that many people thought Ninja Thunderbolt wasn't a "cut & paste" IFD movie. The scenes where characters from To catch a thief interact with the ones from the new added shots are so perfectly edited that if we haven't seen an IFD movie before we can truly think they are from the same film.

Barbara Yuen (who knows her real chinese name??) was later seen in IFD Ninja Operation 7: Royal Warriors, another asian co-production between Taiwan, South Korea & Thailand.

The international success of Ninja Thunderbolt was so huge as the ninja craze was booming in the world at the same time. Distributors from all around the world started to demand more ninja movies to IFD that was offering what the audiences wanted to see but a cheaper prices. Ninja Thunderbolt supposed the golden goose to IFD.

Original trailer for Ninja thunderbolt

But once again, the Curse of Thunderbolt saga appears because Ninja Thunderbolt may surely be the most famous & popular IFD ninja movie but as it happens to Inferno Thunderbolt, Majestic thunderbolt & Scorpion Thunderbolt, this film doesn't longer exists on IFD catalog. Its master is missing or destroyed & only the remaining old videotapes are the only traces of this classic movie from IFD.