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“WAR STORIES! &
THE MAKING OF…
SIX STRING SAMURAI”
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
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
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.