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The only child of Charles and Lee-Lee Chan, Jackie Chan was born Chan Kong-Sang (meaning Born In Hong Kong) on the 7th of April, 1954. The family lived in a mansion in the exclusive Victoria Peak district, not owned by them Charles worked as a cook for the French Ambassador, while Lee-Lee was the housekeeper. He was not academically bright which was noticed by Charles, who decided to enrol the boy, now 7, at the Peking Opera School, operated by Shu Master Yu Jan-Yuen.
Being part of the Chinese Opera Research School, Jackie learnt through ten years of nineteen hours a day the major discipline of the Peking Opera, which includes acting, singing, dance, mime, acrobatics and a variety of martial arts. After graduation he went to work at the Shaw Brothers Studios as a stuntman, where after two years he was promoted to stunt coordinator. Watching Jackie direct stunt men, a producer spotted his talents and gave him his first adult in Little Tiger from Canton (1971). After years of being paid minimally for his abilities, 1978’s Snake in the Eagle Shadow and Drunken Master gave Jackie the freedom to create the genre of kung fu comedy, which transformed the Hong Kong film industry.
In 1980 Jackie directed his first film, The Young Master, with producer Raymond Chow. The major success of The Young Master prompted Chow to bring Jackie to the United States to star in Big Brawl and Cannonball Run, which also starred Burt Reynolds and Roger Moore.
With his experience in American film making techniques, Jackie�s headed back home to improve Hong Kong cinema and this is evident in Project A (1983). Jackie returned to the United States twice as an actor, in Cannonball Run 2 and the Protector, before the New York Film Festival honored him for Police Story (1986). His direction in Police Story II, Project A II, and Armour of God II which were all well acclaimed in the States increasing the popularity of Hong Kong Cinema.
The conquest of Jackie and many of Hong Kong filmmakers went into full swing. But a major turning point came when Jackie starred in Rumble in the Bronx (1994), a Hong Kong production filmed in Canada and distributed by New Line Cinema. The success of Rumble in the Bronx helped launch a series of American films of Jackie’s and which lead finally to the present day of Rush Hour and it’s sequel Rush Hour 2.
This video presents the best of Jackie Chan stunts: