Filmmaker Wong Jing, a prominent figure in the ‘80s and ‘90s Hong Kong cinema boom, worked with Jackie Chan on the 1993 live action adaptation of City Hunter. The movie was released and did very well at the box office.
Still, Jing wasn’t happy with how everything shook out. He was so unhappy, in fact, that two years later he put out another movie, High Risk, that starred Jet Li and marks perhaps the most lavish insults to a former coworker ever created.
YouTube channel Accented Cinema has chronicled this tale of professional revenge in a new video. The clip explains that Chan talked a lot of smack about City Hunter after its release, publicly stating that the movie’s comedy was too juvenile for his tastes, which made Wong angry enough that he went on to make High Risk to take Chan down a peg or two.
Opposite Jet Li’s heroic bodyguard Kit Li is Jacky Cheung’s Frankie Lone, an in-universe action movie star who Li’s character has to protect as he bumbles his way through a terrorist plot. The jokes made at Frankie’s behest sometimes draw on Bruce Lee parodies (a clip of him yelping in fear at a cockroach is used for a movie fight scene’s combat dub), but the Chan-specific jokes are more pointed. And pointedly mean.
As the Accented Cinema video shows, Frankie wears a similar stunt team uniform as those worn by Chan and his crew in real life, goes by a similar-sounding “Frankie,” and has a manager named Charlie after Chan’s real-life manager, Willie Chan Chi-Keung.
Frankie, who the audience is meant to immediately clock as a Chan analog, is shown being a real dirtbag throughout the film. He’s frequently drunk, arrogant, and unprofessional on set. The heaviest accusation in the world of action movies is that Chan, depicted as Frankie, doesn’t do his own stunt work.
As to the truth of these characterizations, Chan is known for sleeping around and cheating on his wife and once crashed a concert while drunk, but even Jing himself is shown in the clip saying that the actor’s very professional and dedicated to his work. The faked stunts accusation is a more complicated (and probably cheaper) dig. Accented Video shows that, while Chan does perform the majority of his stunts, his movies are filled with doubles subbing in for extra shots, moves he can’t perfectly nail, and times when he’s injured.
While using High Risk to point out that Chan’s action movie career, no matter how impressive, is the result of an actual human being’s efforts rather than those an unbreakable robot could have diminished Chan’s career, things seem to have worked out just fine for him anyway. Well, for the most part at least.
[via Boing Boing]
Send Great Job, Internet tips to email@example.com