Thai martial arts star Tony Jaa is being touted as the heir-apparent to Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan and Jet Li -- and in "Ong-Bak: The Thai Warrior," he certainly makes a mark for himself in the increasingly popular genre with refined, enthrallingly focused, breathtakingly acrobatic grace.
The first time he's shown on screen -- simply practicing his Muay Thai kung-fu style in precision exercises of extraordinary power and sharp, sudden movements -- its impossible to take your eyes off him.
When he actually begins fighting -- and climbing walls and sliding under cars and literally jumping through barbwire hoops -- "Ong-Bak" seems well on its way to becoming a truly great launching pad for an Asian fighter-actor who could take the world by storm.
Continue reading: Ong-Bak: The Thai Warrior Review
Take a look back at October's inaugural event.
The film is expected to continue without Mendes' involvement.