Sam Firstenberg admitted that he had absolutely no knowledge or experience with action based ninja movies prior to directing Revenge of the American Ninja for Canon Films. Despite the initial unfamiliarity, he eagerly accepted the offer. He produced an American ninja film that proved its success by warranting 3 sequels. Similarly, before receiving the script for Breakin’ 2- Electric Boogaloo, Firstenberg had no cultural proximity with hip-hop culture, but still managed to direct a film that paid homage to the merit of urban break-dancers. His openness and acceptance of other cultures speaks volume to his character and life experiences.
The Creative Interconnectedness of Firstenberg's Journey
We believe the furniture Firstenberg builds proves how his education in different areas helps him to express himself. A creative mind is always in need for new projects even when officially retired. This picture is an example. Firstenberg might be considered unlucky for not having the chance to study film as soon as he wanted to. He might have taken classes which were not directly useful for the profession he eventually went into. However, we see that the skills he had acquired in those years still contribute to his creativity in his work and during retirement. Moreover, his works do not solely have a technical aspect, but also a cultural one. The sophistication of these works and his ability to capture different cultures’ craftsmanship are results of an open personality. Going through immigration twice and successfully adapting to a new culture accentuated this openness and made him fearless in his explorations. This photo, showing one of his homemade furniture projects and a collection of his movies, is an illustration of a life that will always be full of creativity.
Firstenberg’s curiosity for the unknown is the energizing urge behind his creative inclination to visually articulate the human experience. The director, whom we visited to learn about his creative journey in the film industry, surprised us by showing us the furniture he had built. We thank him for proving that a productive mind can find many ways to express oneself and the journey never ends!