Wu - Chinese Martial Arts
Jackie Chan Introduction | Biography | Influence
Jackie Chan Kwong Sang was born in Hong Kong on April 7, 1954. His Chinese name Chan Kwong Sang means 'Born In Hong Kong'. He was the only child of Charles and Lee-Lee Chan. Jackie was delivered after a 12 months of pregnancy. That was extra 3 months. So, his mother had to have a surgery to bring him out. At his birth, he weighed more than 12 pounds, and that was amazing! Jackie had a nickname called 'Ah Pao' which means a cannonball. His parents were so poor that they doesn't have enough money to pay for the operation. A British doctor who delivered him offers them for a meager $26 - HK$1500 for Jackie, but luckily, Jackie's parents refused. So, they ended up by borrowing money from their friends to pay up.
Jackie attended the Nah-Hwa primary school in Hong Kong. He disliked school and
left after finishing Primary 1. At age of seven, his father took position as
chief chef in the American Embassy in Australia. His father determined that the
boy should learn some skills and sent him to the Peking Opera School.
At the age of 7, his parents enrolled him into the Peking Chinese Opera School to learn dancing, singing, acrobatics, acting and martial arts. There, Jackie met Sammo Hung and
Yuen Biao who became a successful actors today.
Their master was Yu-Jim Yuen. He himself has a background as a talented performer. He is very strict and believed every hard work will have their pay off. Later, he adopted Yuen Lo (Jackie) as his godson.
During the school days,
Jackie and his friends had to train everyday from morning till night. Jackie had
mentioned it was the hardest period of his life. They will need to study and
work 19 hours a day. Jackie and his friends would be punished and beaten up if
they didn't fulfill their practice or fail to achieve the standards. After days
of practice, they would performed in a troupe called 'The Seven Fortunes'.
They were given a stage name as Yuen Cu (Sammo), Yuen Biao, Yuen Lo (Jackie), Yuen Wah, Yuen Kuei (Corey), Yuen Mo, Yuen Choi and Yuen Tak. Among of them, Sammo Hung was the big brother of the group. They often performed in public performances at the then Laiyuen Amusement Park
and other venues.
As time changes, the Peking Opera School was declining. Their master started to loan 'The Seven Fortunes' out as stuntmen to film company. Jackie worked as a stuntmen or the Shaw Brothers Film Company. He performed many dangerous stunts for the company and soon got noticed. Later, Jackie met Sammo who have signed contract to the Golden Harvest. Sammo introduced Jackie to Golden Harvest and soon he performed some stunts for the famous Bruce Lee in the Fist Of Fury and Enter The Dragon.
Later, Jackie met Willie
Chan who invited him to be a leading actor in a new film under Lo Wei's company.
Lo Wei wanted to modelJackie as a replacement to Bruce Lee. This is when Jackie
is given his stage name "Sing Lung" which means 'becoming the dragon". In the
1976, Jackie filmed the new Fist Of Fury, hoping to imitated Bruce Lee.
Unfortunately, the style didn't suit him. Besides Fist Of Fury, Jackie also
starred in Shaolin Wooden Men,
Killer Meteor and The Magnificent Bodyguard. It was not a great success as the box office showed no improvement and the new model of Bruce Lee didn't work.
Jackie tried to break into the Hollywood when he starred in Battle Creek Brawl with Kristine de Bell and Jose Ferrer. But, it ended up with a disappointing results. Later, he played a small role in Cannonball Run along with a huge cast of American celebrities. It was a big hit in US but the Americans doesn't noticed him much.
In 1978, Jackie was loaned
to Sensonal Films which is owned by Ng See Yuen. Jackie acted in a kung fu
comedy Half A Loaf Of Kung Fu and Snakes in the Eagle's Shadow. Jackie established his own acting
style and starred in The Drunken Master which is a great success and made him popular.