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International correspondent Antonio Graceffo's series continues as he travels through Thailand in search of the real story behind Ong-Bak star Tony Jaa! In Part 2, he interviews Sak Chai -- Jaa's first martial arts teacher.

Editor's Note: In Searching for Tony Jaa: The Hottest Martial Arts Movie Star Since Jackie Chan and Jet Li (Part 1), international correspondent Antonio Graceffo took you into Bangkok and into a conversation about Tony Jaa's childhood and young adult life with none other than the Ong-Bak star's parents. In Part 2, the author of Warrior Odyssey: The Travels of a Martial Artist Through Asia seeks — and finds — an audience with Tony Jaa's first martial arts teacher, Sak Chai

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International correspondent Antonio Graceffo heads to Bangkok in search of the real story behind Ong-Bak star Tony Jaa in this exclusive series! In Part 1, he's granted a rare interview with Jaa's parents.

Just when most moviegoers were ready to abandon all hope that a fresh face would ever appear in martial arts cinema, we got Tony Jaa, star of 2003's Ong-Bak. As an added bonus, he brought with him a deadly new fighting style. In the blink of an eye, the sacred Thai art of pounding a person senseless with the knees and elbows was introduced to the world. Aside from having the most incredible fight scenes ever and showing us Bangkok rather than Hong Kong, Ong-Bak is an important movie for two reasons. It was the first major film to feature muay Thai and the first Thai movie to have wide distribution in the States — all thanks to a high-flying martial artist from the jungles of Southeast Asia. And now Tony Jaa is making the leap from Bangkok to Hollywood thanks to his recent casting in the upcoming Fast & Furious 7, helmed by Saw director James Wan and starring Dwayne Johnson, Jason Statham, Vin Diesel, Michelle Rodriguez, Paul Walker and veteran actor Kurt Russell. Watch a video of Vin Diesel and Tony Jaa training:

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Finally, a movie featuring Jackie Chan, Jet Li, Sammo Hung and director John Woo on the same screen has arrived. While Chop Socky: Cinema Hong Kong isn’t a big-budget blockbuster, it’s an engaging documentary that explores the many facets of kung fu films by showing archival footage, analyzing fight scenes and interviewing the aforementioned stars. It accurately chronicles the genre and intersperses clips from classics such as The One-Armed Swordsman. While it doesn’t have the creativity or drama of some other documentaries, this Independent Film Channel production is far better looking than most. It packs a punch you’ll definitely feel, whether you’re a genre guru or an action neophyte. After noting the recent international appeal of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and the Kill Bill movies, writer-director Ian Taylor explains that the first Chinese action flicks were filmed in Shanghai during the 1920s and based on wu xia (period-piece kung fu) novels. Eventually, productions migrated south to China’s most famous island.

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Jackie Chan. Jet Li. In the same movie. ‘Nuff said, right? Well, not quite. But fans of “J&J” (Jackie Chan and Jet Li, as the studio calls them) have waited to hear those eight words in the same sentence for 25 years, and all it took was the director of Stuart Little and the writer of Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron to make The Forbidden Kingdom happen. “Say again?” you might ask. Yep. Director Rob Minkoff and screenwriter John Fusco spearhead the movie that not only brings the globe’s two biggest martial arts icons together on-screen for the first time but also adapts elements of China’s most famous novel, Journey to the West. Not Asian filmmaking legends like Tsui Hark or Ang Lee. Not even Hollywood action experts like James Cameron or the Wachowski brothers. Instead, it’s John Fusco (who wrote a cartoon about talking horses) and Rob Minkoff (whose claim to fame is bringing E.B. White’s children’s novel to life).

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