The Making Of

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by Lance Mungia

I’ve been itching to tell somebody about the events of the last year.
It’s been a ride, that’s for sure. The Gods have a twisted sense of humor.

It was September, 1996, and I still hadn’t made an undergrad thesis

film at Loyola yet. My plan all along was to make a feature by hook or

crook, using school stuff or whatever else I could find. That’s where “Six

String,” or “The Blade,” as it was then called, began.

Since I had little money, I thought I’d have to make your average one

room location, heavy dialogue, thing. I was frustrated by that, because

I’d always thought that “low-budget independent,” didn’t have

to mean “dialogue”. Then I met Jeff Falcon, star and jack of

all trades on “Six String.” He shared my view, and our twisted

imaginations got together and my little thesis turned into something totally


So what was our idea?

First, let’s pair up a kid and his hero, who happens to be a post-apocalyptic

version of a fifties rocker. As skilled with his samurai sword as he is with

his guitar, “Buddy,” is “The Six String Samurai.” He

must fight his way to the mythical city of Lost Vegas, and ditch this orphan

kid, if he’s ever going to kick enough ass to become the next King of Rock

and Roll.

It was your average, action packed, rock and roll fairy tale. Easy,


We figured we could shoot weekends in Death Valley and pull off this

spectacular martial arts epic for like 25 grand or so in loans and credit

card bills. Okaaayyy…. and maybe monkeys would fly out my butt too.

We picked Death Valley because I could get in with a student permit,

and it’s locations look like they’re from another world, yet, they’re all

accessible and within an hour of each other. That decision was great for

the film’s look, horrible for Jeff’s and my pocketbooks, because we split

the costs.

Our ignorance forced us to suffer. We were so stupid, that we ultimately

made a pretty sweet little film that a smarter person would never had attempted.