‘Legends of Tomorrow’s’ Caity Lotz channels her inner superhero by using Arnis for White Canary’s fight scenes


Superheroes aren’t born. Well, maybe with the exception of a few. But as far as the rest are concerned, the storyline is simple: they start out as ordinary as they come as, normal human beings living their normal lives when all of a sudden, a seismic shift happens.

Sara Lance’s (played by Caity Lotz) transformation is one of such stories, but is no less an incredible one. Best known for her role as the Black Canary in ARROW, Sara emerges from the depths of the Lazarus Pit and is reincarnated in DC’s Legends of Tomorrow as the White Canary – a hardened, self-assured assassin, left to fend for herself.

White Canary is known to possess extraordinary agility, stamina and stealth, and to say that she is skilled in unarmed combat while still able to hold her own as a weapons master is an understatement. After all, White Canary is defined by her martial arts prowess.

As a martial arts expert, Sara’s character arc requires Lotz to act as convincingly as possible. Perhaps calling in the help of a stunt double or two would make things easier. However, with all the finesse and flair that come with the job, don’t be shock to find out that this super heroine performs her own stunts and fight scenes. Lotz is in fact an accomplished parkourist. Her dedication to the craft led her to train in Filipino martial arts, like Arnis, under the tutelage of Dan Inosanto who has a school in Los Angeles.

“I trained with [Inosanto], who is like a legendary master teacher. When I was training, all I used were two sticks which represent anything, like swords and bo staff. It was great because now I can pick up any weapon and know how to move, and that style works well for film and television,” Lotz said.

Arnis, also known as Kali or Eskrima, emphasizes weapon-based fighting with sticks, knives, bladed weapons and various improvised weapons. To train in Arnis also means learning hand-to-hand combat, joint locks, grappling and weapon disarming techniques, making it the perfect fighting style for superheroes-in-training.

“[The action scenes are] really fun. It’s hard sometimes when I want more rehearsal time to really be able to get it. But a lot of times I just have to learn it on set and then do it, which is fine because I have done it for so many years that I can pick it up fast,” she said.

Lotz’s journey as Sara Lance, both in ARROW and DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, can also be described in the same way – she had to learn to pick it up fast.

“It’s interesting to take a very dark character from a very dark world into a show that has a different tone. Keeping that same character and adjusting it to fit the kind of levity that a show has was a bit of a challenge. But as the episodes go on, we get to dive back into that darker Sara which is fine,” Lotz said.

DC’s Legends of Tomorrow brings together a ragtag team of superheroes – a combination of characters and even villains from The Flash and ARROW, along with fresh new faces from the DC Comics pantheon: Ray Palmer a.k.a The Atom, Sara Lance a.k.a White Canary, Leonard Snart a.k.a Captain Cold and his partner Mick Rory a.k.a. Heat Wave, Professor Martin Stein and Jefferson “Jax” Jackson forming the meta-human Firestorm and Kendra Saunders a.k.a. Hawkgirl and Carter Hall a.k.a. Hawkman. Together, they travel to the future to stop the immortal Vandal Savage from wreaking total havoc and utter destruction on an embattled Earth.

Since its debut, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow has been consistently ranking No. 1 in its timeslot. Follow the Legends in their quest to defeat Savage and catch new episodes of DC’s Legends of Tomorrow every Friday, the same day as the US, on Warner TV at 9pm.

Warner TV is available on SKYcable Channel 77, SKYcable HD Channel 197, Cignal HD Channel 119, Destiny Cable (Digital) Channel 77, Destiny Cable (Analog) Channel 80, and Cable Link Channel 30. For more updates on the best in action, comedy and drama, follow on Facebook.com/WarnerTVAsia.

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