We all want to meet our favorite celebrities and share a small moment with them, one which they might forget the next day but we won’t. Ever. Would you believe us if we said that one of the biggest stars of the entertainment industry, Jackie Chan, has one such story about meeting his idol, Bruce Lee?
Long before Jackie Chan achieved superstar status, he had the privilege of working with one of the best actors and martial arts experts, Bruce Lee. While he was a mere extra on the set, Bruce Lee was the star of the film. There was little chance that the star would notice an uncredited cast member but he did and Jackie Chan has not been able to forget the hilarious story even after all these years.
Jackie Chan’s Hilarious Encounter with Bruce Lee
Bruce Lee played the role of ‘Lee,’ a martial artist teaching students at the Shaolin Temple, in Enter the Dragon (1973). The film also had Jackie Chan playing a very minor role of a henchman who would attack Lee during a fight only to get hit by him. Well, it didn’t take much time before the fight turned a bit too real for Chan, who got hit straight on his head by a stick. While he was initially dizzy and couldn’t see properly for a minute, he got all better in a moment.
But Lee did not know that and Chan didn’t want him to know either. Why? He simply loved getting attention from the star.
“I was young doing Enter the Dragon fighting with Bruce Lee. I was behind the camera and then I ran and suddenly it was all black in front of my eyes. He had hit just one stick right on my head. I felt dizzy and I looked at Bruce Lee, he kept acting until the director said cut. He then threw his stick, turned around and said ‘Oh my God’ and ran to me and lifted me up and said sorry. I was not in pain anymore. I was a young guy and very tough. But I pretended to be in pain so that Bruce Lee holds me for as long as he can. I kept pretending the whole day”.
Well, who wouldn’t want to be pampered by a star of Lee’s stature? Unfortunately, Enter the Dragon would go on to become their last collaboration as Lee passed away one month before its release. Thankfully, Chan has such a personal memory with the legend to remember him by.
When Bruce Lee Went Out of His Way to Help Jackie Chan
Enter the Dragon wasn’t the first time Chan worked with Lee. In 1972, the Rush Hour actor worked as an extra and a stunt double on Fist of Fury. Talking to the Post’s Richard James Havis all the way back in 1997 (via SCMP), he recalled what it was like working with Lee, revealing that once Lee had specifically stated that he wanted Chan to be amongst the ones working overtime with him. This made the actor ecstatic as more work meant more pay.
“Well, when we had finished shooting in the day, he needed some more people to work at night. He looked at the stunt coordinator and said, ‘I need Jackie.’ I was so happy – that meant I would get overtime pay until the next morning. So Bruce Lee got me more money. That was the first time I made $200 in one day.”
Chan also praised Lee’s greatness who went out of his way to tell the stunt coordinator to pay Chan more as he was involved in a dangerous stunt, which the actor revealed wasn’t the case.
“Bruce was great, because he got me even more money by telling the stunt coordinator it was a dangerous stunt – but it wasn’t a dangerous stunt. He was just trying to help me get paid more and that made me so happy.”
While Chan never got to work alongside Lee as a star, we are happy he got to share these special moments with the late actor everyone looked up to.
You can stream Enter the Dragon on Max and Fist of Fury on Prime Video.