"I came into the game to destroy MCs, but I did not know that I'd be making a movie of this capacity," RZA told MTV News of the journey to release his film. "When I realized that I wanted to become a director, I did make a five-year plan.
"I was going through a lot of pain and problems. [I was] really not shining in the music game, because I walked, I just stepped away," he explained. "I took the time to study, to prepare for something that became a new love and urge in me."
RZA studied under the guidance of revered director Quentin Tarantino for an extensive period of time, until he felt ready to finally step out on his own.
"When I first started to pen the story of 'Man With the Iron Fists,' it was 2005," he said. "It [was a] seven-year process. But after five years, I was given that green light, because I've been with Quentin for all of these years and I studied, and I was just really prepared to step into the arena."
For his debut, RZA — who often records music as Bobby Digital — recruited Academy Award winner Russell Crowe and Lucy Liu as his lead actors, playing Jack Knife and Madam Blossom respectively, and the chemistry on set was instant.
"I had some involvement with Bobby in 'Kill Bill,' where he wrote the song for [Liu's character] O-Ren, and I know that Quentin was super excited about that," Liu told MTV News of working with the Abbot. "He has been apprenticing with Quentin for a long time, and he works in the 'our' mode. It's 'our movie,' it's a team effort, and he brought that to his directing style as well."
Check out everything we've got on "The Man With the Iron Fists."