As he approaches his 60th birthday, it appears Jackie Chan has finally retired from action movies, after a decade of kicking the idea around, so to speak. Echoing comments he made last spring about becoming "an Asian Robert De Niro," in a recent interview, Chan asked Hollywood to please give him some dramatic roles so he can continue acting into his autumn years, rather than use a stunt double — something Chan has never done through over 100 films of often death-defying performances.
"Poor me, nobody in Hollywood hires me to make a Kramer vs. Kramer (or) Sound Of Music," Chan said, also citing Rain Man and Tootsie as ideal roles. "Action stars cannot live too long," said the perpetually boyish and athletic 59-year-old, who could probably still fight off a roomful of 25-year-olds blindfolded. "True actors, like Robert De Niro, Dustin Hoffman, they live forever," declared Chan, who clearly didn't see Little Fockers or Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium.
Chan admitted that his command of the English language is an obstacle to landing serious roles, and in fact, he turned down a role in The Interpreter because it involved too much English dialogue. But language barrier or no, we're shocked Hollywood isn't leaping at the chance to do a remake of Sound Of Music where Chan teaches the Von Trapp children kung fu, then escapes the Nazis by leaping out a fifth-story window onto a moving truck, during an equally moving performance of "Edelweiss."
While we can understand Chan's frustration towards what he sees as typecasting, we ask you to watch a clip of First Strike—in which a younger Chan fights off a roomful of assailants with an assortment of props that includes a folding table, a mop, a stepladder—then ask yourself whether Dustin Hoffman reading some words from a script is really all that impressive.
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