Karateka: Official Trailer Director’s Cut (2012) dir. by me

Jordan Mechner’s classic video game came out in 1984. I was alive then, very much into karate, very much into my own inverted style of sleeve-rolling and hair bangs:

(Jr. black belt exam, probably ca. 1989)

For my birthday or possibly Christmas that year, my older sister bought me a new karate-themed computer game (what we called them in those days), which one would purchase from an Egghead Software store off a shelf in an oversized box that looked like this:

So I jammed that floppy diskette in the family Apple ][ and spent days, months with it. I won’t lie, it was primitive. But it was the first of its kind—universally lauded for its cinematic visual style. It became a big hit.

Then I grew up, stopped playing video games, kept watching ninja movies, eventually started making videos.

And about eight months ago, I got an email from Jordan Mechner and John August, asking if they could send me a t-shirt. It was cryptic but when the shirt came in the mail, depicting the game’s 8-bit hero high-kicking at a crudely rendered hawk, I knew right away. A remake was afoot.

And so it is. I had just an incredible time making this. Credit where credit is due, here on my site.