'The New Masters' is a documentary about the evolving martial arts scene in China. The film is currently in the works, and the crew, which includes China-based Fight Land writer Sascha Matuszak, Christopher Cherry and David Dempsey, have recently released the trailer to this film.
Here are their own words on what the film is about:
Over the past couple decades, kung fu has taken a back seat to a new combat phenomenon, mixed martial arts, or MMA. MMA is one of the fastest growing sports in the world and the new proving ground for anyone who considers themselves "the greatest warrior on the planet".
Our documentary, The New Masters, explores the meeting of these two martial styles in Mainland China. We follow MMA fighters and kung fu masters as they navigate new landscapes, feed their families, seek out the Tao, and fight for the pride of a nation. The film will also explain how the martial arts in China are a metaphor for China's own emergence onto the world stage. Traditional culture, in this case kung fu, is being diluted and transformed by commercial considerations and the sweeping power of globalization, represented by MMA and the general mixing of martial arts worldwide.
The film also shows how the confluence of traditional and modern martial arts in China is already having an impact on the Chinese sports system, changing the way coaches train their charges, and forcing staid sports associations to rethink their rules and regulations. Similarly, the myths and legends of kung fu are brought to life - not on the screen as a martial arts epic, as has been case for the last few decades - but in the ring, side by side with MMA, and in the mountain retreats of old masters long retired from the bare knuckle circuits.
The global MMA movement is forcing traditional Chinese kung fu to view itself in its true, unvarnished form - in effect helping kung fu adapt to a changing world. This introspective process also stands to increase kung fu's already powerful influence on modern MMA, by infusing the mixed martial arts movement with a martial spirit rooted in tradition, a spirit that goes beyond pure technique and efficiency in a fight.
The crew has also started a kickstarter for their documentary as they have a goal of raising $15,000 to complete the film.