Fil-Ams behind fight scenes in 'Ninja Turtles 2'


Posted at May 26 2016 12:15 PM

Jon Valera and Jonathan Eusebio. Handout photo

MANILA – Two Filipino-Americans are responsible for the fight scenes in the upcoming movie “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows.”

“It is important that the audience feels that the Turtles are always in danger, but at the most serious or scary moments, we often have a joke to punctuate that moment just to give you relief from the tension,” the film's director Dave Green said.

They had no problem doing that, thanks to Filipino-American stunt coordinator Jonathan Eusebio, who also had some help from fellow Fil-Am veteran, multi-martial artist Jon Valera, to help in training and articulating much of the action in the film.

"The biggest challenge on sequels is always to try and outdo the original, whether in magnitude of the action or the complexity of the story," Eusebio said.

"We tried things we didn’t get to do on the original, but at the same time preserved the fun and humor of the Turtles' camaraderie. We listened to feedback from the previous movie and fans can expect something even bigger and better this time around,” he added.

Since Eusebio also designed the fight scenes for the 2014 film, he said the actors who played the Turtles in the sequel actually trained less than they did on the previous movie.

"On the first movie there was a learning curve when to use the actor’s movements and when to use their stunt double’s movements. We figured out how to be more efficient and save time in terms of scheduling. Stunts and visual effects handle the bulk of the action movements for the Turtles," he said.

Aside from their experience working with the lead actors, Eusebio also shared what it was like doing action scenes with Megan Fox and Stephen Amell, who play April O’Neil and Casey Jones in the movie respectively.

"Megan isn’t afraid to get into the thick of things and she's always willing to do as much as she can," he said.

As for Amell, Eusebio said he is persistent in doing the stunts himself.

“Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Out of the Shadows” will open in Philippine cinemas on June 1.