Thanks a lot to Paul himself, and to Todd for finding this on the Net'! It was back in August 2002, on the Pulse Comics site.
"When Everybody was Kung Fu Fighting, I was Doing the Hustle"
By Jennifer Contino
Paul Gulacy is returning to his roots, so to speak. This September the artist, known for helping to create the martial arts sensation Shang Chi in the 1970s returns to the series with a new MAX version of the Master of Kung Fu. Joining Gulacy is co-creator and original series scribe, Doug Moench and inker supreme, Jimmy Palmiotti. THE PULSE caught up with Gulacy to get the skinny on this old favorite.
The Pulse : What is "Kung Fu?"
GULACY : It's an ancient martial art that has its roots in China. The term is a generic phrase that covers hundreds of fighting styles. It literally means "skill from effort."
The Pulse : Have either of you studied that or any other martial arts? What do you think it takes to be a "master
of Kung Fu?"
GULACY : Only from afar. Dojos, tournaments and stuff like that. I know a few martial artists and I know the injury factor that goes along with it. I stayed away from it for that reason because my living comes from my right hand. I don't think you need to be a fighter to be a master. You can be a car mechanic and have good kung fu.
The Pulse : What originally inspired the creation of Shang-Chi?
GULACY : The kung fu craze that swept the nation in the early '70s and the hit TV show, Kung Fu.
The Pulse : What did you both like the best about working on that series in the 1970s?
GULACY : Doing a character that was reminiscent of Bruce Lee. Also, he wasn't some big blonde guy for a change. It was also the first monthly martial arts comic and it had a great supporting cast.
The Pulse : Who was the original Shang-Chi: Master of Kung Fu? What was his motivation in his original series?
GULACY : He was the son of the evil Doctor Fu Manchu. Now he's the son of a guy that looks just like Fu Manchu, but we don't call him that because of legal ramifications.
The Pulse : What were the biggest challenges you faced working on the Master of Kung Fu?
GULACY : For me it was getting the book done on time. also, having an inker who was willing to put it down over all my lines. Getting fan support from an ethnic character with no super powers was a challenge as well.
The Pulse : Who is Shang-Chi now? GULACY : He's the same man who now is removed from the rigors of working for the British Secret Service and has finally found his peace. He teaches, he meditates and trains. He lives in a remote area of China in a small community, but we get in there and mess that all up.
The Pulse : How is this version of Master of Kung Fu different from the previous ones?
GULACY : If you mean the Shang Chi character, he hasn't changed a bit. All of the characters remain true to how they were portrayed in the original series. They're just a little older and that's part of what we explore, the personalities as time went by and how they again gather as a team and deal with each other. I can't say that any of them are jumping up and down with glee to be together on this mission.
The Pulse : What freedoms are presented by having this series run in the MAX line?
GULACY : Well, it always had a more adult feel , so, we'll continue with that and take advantage here and there of the MAX freedom but only to the extent of what you might see in a R-Rated thriller. There is sex and there is violence for sure.
The Pulse : Who are the main characters in Shang-Chi: Master of Kung Fu?
GULACY : Chi, Leiko, Tarr, Reston and the evil father and Nemesis. We introduce new characters as well, including a pound for pound martial arts bad guy equal named moving shadow for Shang to battle.
The Pulse : What other projects are you working on?
GULACY : After MOKF, I hook up with Jimmy Palmiotti and Warren Ellis to do a mini series for Wildstorm and then I'm working with Jimmy on a creator owned mini-series called Splatterman. Both series will once again deal with the spy genre. I can't get away from it. I love it too much.