One of the main criticism against Marvel Iron Fist is focused on the martial arts. Finn Jones is being knocked for his martial arts skills and lots of folks are pointing to AMC’s Into The Badlands as an example of good TV martial arts. There are even folks counting the number of cuts in each fight scene. Why would the fight scenes on a show about one of Marvel’s top martial artists not be good? Metro ran an interview with Jones the day before the series premiere and the answer was right there.
Jones was asked about his martial arts training:
It was very intense to begin with. When I first moved over to New York, before I started actually filming, I had three weeks of very intense martial arts and weight training preparation. But then unfortunately once the show started, the filming schedule was just so tight – I was working 14 hours every day, six days a week, days into nights, nights into days – and actually my schedule didn’t allow me to continue the training as much as I really hoped.
I’m not sure about you, but I think I would need more than three weeks of training, regardless of intensity, to pull off a role like Danny Rand. So he didn’t have a lot of up front training… what about during the filming? Jones was asked about prepping for the shoots.
I was learning the fight scenes 15 minutes before we actually shot them because the schedule was so tight. So 15 minutes before the stunt director would talk me through the choreography and I’d just jump straight into it. It really was a baptism of fire and I just learned on the job and I’ve been doing it for 12 months now.
The rushed nature of the series and it’s place in the overall scheme of the Netflix / Marvel universe seems to be a major factor in the quality of the fight scenes we see in the series. Hopefully his training continued after filming since he would be going into The Defenders. He’ll need to step up his game fighting next to Daredevil.