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“THE SEARCH FOR WENG WENG” Doc looks to Kickstarter for completion

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I was first introduced to the diminutive James Bond rip-off from the Philippines known as Weng Weng at my friend Anthony Biancofiore’s house long after an alcohol fueled party. Anthony is a big fan of the “little people” and it goes beyond an admiration and love for Billy Barty and the cast of UNDER THE RAINBOW. His devotion to dwarf stars extends to Bridget the Midget and her fellow small stature artistes in the world of adult entertainment and this strange oddity called Weng Weng; who with the help of his trusty umbrella that he uses to fly around à la Mary Poppins, his fast punchy kung-fu moves and his harem of regular sized sultry sexy starlets, has become an icon of cult cinema and is a significant part of Filipino culture.

Now filmmaker Andrew Leovold is busy working on a documentary all about this late great superstar! THE SEARCH FOR WENG WENG, the film which morphed into MACHETE MAIDENS UNLEASHED is about to morph back again!

“Back in the early nineties, watching a two-foot nine Filipino improbably named Weng Weng as a miniature James Bond punching someone in the nuts and then running between their legs was, for me, one of those life-changing moments,” remembers Leovold. “Weng Weng and FOR YOUR HEIGHT ONLY hinted at a parallel universe filled with strange and exotic films just waiting to be uncovered. I was immediately hooked, but wanted to know more. Who was Weng Weng? Where did he come from, and what happened to him. Were there other Weng Weng films, and was he still alive? Not even the internet could shed light on what appeared to be a forgotten life.”

“The obsession grew until 2006, when I was invited to a film festival in Manila. I went with a video camera in one hand, determined to uncover once and for all the mystery of Weng Weng. Eventually I found the complete story, but not before the adventure of a lifetime, and it’s all caught on film! Refereeing a dwarf boxing match…boots-deep on the set of a Bruno Mattei zombie film…guest of honour at Imelda Marcos’ birthday party …and finding myself face-to-face with the only person in the world who could piece the puzzle together.”

“Weng Weng’s story, it turns out, is even more extraordinary than I could have ever imagined,” he continues. “Real life secret agent, international superstar beating George Lucas at the box office, and the rest; heartbreaking, bizarre, exhilarating. It’s part personal quest, gonzo travelogue, detective story, and Philippine B film history. It’s the story of obsession, of following one’s passions, and the transformative power of dreams. Above all, it’s the story of a little guy overcoming the most debilitating of circumstances to become something phenomenal.

“For THE SEARCH FOR WENG WENG, we have 100 hours of footage scripted into a 90 minute documentary feature. We have a distributor (Monster Pictures) already lined up for Australia and the United Kingdom, and already interest from Europe and North America. We have a viral campaign planned of greater-than-Weng proportions, and a ready-made audience since we first announced the idea in 2007. The Kickstarter campaign will provide much-needed post-production funds for fine editing, sound, music and legals.”

You can support this wonderful documentary here.

About the author
Lee Gambin
Lee Gambin is a Melbourne, Australia based playwright, screenwriter, film and theatre essayist and journalist. He has been working as a writer for Fangoria magazine since 2008. He has worked in independent theatre for many years as well as Artistic Director of his own independent theatre company. His rock musical OH THE HORROR! was a major success in its initial workshop run in 2009. He has lectured for numerous film societies and film festivals including the Melbourne International Film Festival. Gambin runs Cinemaniacs, a film society in Melbourne that present genre favorites. Gambin’s play KING OF BANGOR was published by Stephen King associative publishing house The Overlook Connection and MASSACRED BY MOTHER NATURE: EXPLORING THE NATURAL HORROR FILM, a film analysis book, is published by Midnight Marquee Press and has had widely positive reviews.
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