|© The Wu-Tang Corp.- 2004-04-14
Usually, when a rapper breaks into movies, heís in front of the camera.
But RZA, a founding member and main producer of the Wu-Tang Clan, had a different idea ó scoring films. His dreams have come true with the ďKill BillĒ films: Director Quentin Tarantino personally picked RZA to compose the music for the two-part saga.
RZA, born Robert Diggs, got his start scoring films with 1999ís ďGhost Dog: The Way of the Samurai.Ē That the 37-year-old rap star has scored three movies involving martial arts is no coincidence: heís a lifelong lover of kung-fu flicks, as the name of his group demonstrates.
AP: Where did your love of kung-fu movies start?
RZA: It was definitely a common love in the ghetto community regardless, in all the hoods. On Saturday afternoons, a lot kids got it from TV. Everybody would stay in the house, and then Ö you see all the kids kicking and punching each other.
AP: Are you a master in any martial art?
RZA: Iím a chi-kung practitioner. Itís the root of all martial arts. Itís considered more like an internal martial arts.
AP: How does ďKill BillĒ stack up against kung-fu classics?
RZA: ďKill BillĒ came out beautifully. Of course Hong Kong action films, and Japanese action films, they are the masters of it because they are the fathers of it in their own way. But, I think Quentin has really produced and directed one of the best martial arts films done by Hollywood, shall I say.
AP: Did you ever consider acting?
RZA: Any person in the world would want to see themselves on TV or on the movies, I mean, thatís like a kidís dream. But Iím known for music. I make music that has a lot of pictures to it. My music is cinematic anyway. Maybe somebody will recognize that I have a talent for acting or talent for directing. After hanging around Quentin for two or three years, and hanging around John Woo, I think directing is probably my niche, I mean more than acting. I would love to see myself on screen kissing a beautiful girl. (But) Iím more of a behind the scenes guy.
AP: Are you more critical of the way movies are scored now?
RZA: Iím an action film lover more than anything, and to me, most action films have trashy music. It doesnít really match the scene. Itís some techno going on, and itís not moving with the movement of the film or the movement of the action. Iíve been complaining about that for years. I think the people who approach it, they donít know action films, and they donít know music either.
AP: Can you see a picture of RZA holding an Oscar for best score?
RZA: Maybe best score, maybe best song of the year from a movie, maybe best director one day. Or maybe somebody can look at me and see whatís really inside of me and go and do an acting gig.
AP: Rumor has it there has been some dissension in the Wu-Tang Clan recently.
RZA: I donít know if dissension is the word to use. But, Wu-Tang Clan ó clan means family, you know what I mean? You get any group of family of people, youíre going to always have sibling rivalries, confusion. Thatís basically what weíre going through. Itís nothing so serious it canít be remedied.
AP: Do you think Wu-Tang member ODB, who was recently released from prison, will be able to come back the way he was?
RZA: I think his talent is going to speak for himself. Thereís nobody like him in the game. Heís got a lot of problems heís got to iron out, of course, but as far as a one-of-a-kind person, a one-of-a-kind artist, heís one of a generation, one of a lifetime. Heís a very rare commodity.
AP: With so many Wu-Tang members doing different things, is it hard to come back together?
RZA: We all definitely know itís Wu-Tang forever. Whatever Iím doing, no matter what any of the other brothers are doing, Iím quite sure when the flag goes up, weíre going to answer the call. Personally, I think the fans deserve more closure. Itís OK if we never did another album again, because we sold a lot of records influenced a lot of minds. But I think itís only right and exact that we do another album.
AP: Could Wu-Tang hang with the kids today, rap wise?
RZA: The kids today, as far as talent wise, the MCs today have no competition against Wu-Tang. Thereís no MC you can pull up right now that can handle Wu-Tang Clan. Like, one paragraph of a Wu-Tang song has more substance than a lot of these guysí whole album.
AP: Finally, is RZA going Hollywood?
RZA: (Laughs) Holly-hood, baby! Holly-hood!
Written by Associated Press