Variety: Philip Ng cast as Bruce Lee in ‘Birth of the Dragon’

'Birth of the Dragon': Philip Ng

Variety (by Dave McNary):

Philip Ng will portray Bruce Lee in martial arts action movie “Birth of the Dragon,” with shooting commencing Tuesday in Vancouver.

Yu Xia will play Shaolin Master Wong Jack Man and Billy Magnussen will portray martial arts student Steve McKee. Jinging Qu plays the love interest of McKee’s character and Jin Xing will portray a crime boss. George Nolfi is directing from a script by Christopher Wilkinson and Stephen J. Rivele, who have writing credits on “Ali” and “Nixon.”

Groundswell Productions is producing the movie.

The film recreates the mid-1960’s fight between Lee and Wong Jack Man from the point of view of McKee. After the fight, Lee reinvented himself and his style of kung fu. Action sequences will be designed by martial arts choreographer Corey Yuen, whose credits include “Lethal Weapon 4,” “X-Men,” “Romeo Must Die” and “The Expendables.”

Lee began appearing in films in the early 1970s before passing away in 1973. Wong remained silent about the fight for many years and retired from teaching martial arts in 2005 after 45 years.

’Birth of the Dragon’ is a rare opportunity to make an action film with rich characters based on real events and real people,” Nolfi said. “It’s a story about people from the East and West transcending their differences to work together, which is obviously a very timely story.

We’re thrilled to be telling one of the great untold stories in martial arts history, especially at this unique moment when China and Western audiences are opening up to each other as never before,” said London. “To work with a Chinese film company like Kylin on a story that has so much significance in China has been a wonderful collaboration, and, we hope, the first of many.”

Legendary kung fu actor Tien Feng passes away (1928-2015)

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8 Asians:

Taiwanese and Hong Kong kung fu actor Tien Feng’s first movie was Happenings in Ali Shan back in 1949, and his last movie was Eros in 2004. During this half a century of acting, he’s worked with Jackie Chan on multiple films and was even in Fist of Fury with Bruce Lee.

Shaolin Monks in London’s Chinatown

Bruce Lee biopic being developed by daughter Shannon Lee

Shannon Lee, the daughter of martial arts legend Bruce Lee, recently announced her plans in developing a definitive biopic about the late action star. The currently untitled film will be capturing the life and legacy of Bruce Lee in a way that many previous films failed to do, firstly, by being fully supported by Lee’s family.

Shannon remarked that:

There have been projects out there involving my father, but they’ve lacked a complete understanding of his philosophies and artistry… They haven’t captured the essence of his beliefs in martial arts or storytelling. The only way to get audiences to understand the depth and uniqueness of my father is to generate our own material and find amazing like-minded partners to work with.

The biopic is set for a big Hollywood release with big-budget production by Bruce Lee Entertainment, which launched last year in honor of Lee’s contribution to film and culture. The company plans to release the film as the its inaugural project.

POP ETC: “Running In Circle” feat. Wushu master Sifu Chen Ying (music video)

Dig this kung fu flick-flavored music video for Running in Circles,” the supercool new song from Brooklyn indie pop/rock band POP ETC.

Starring wushu master Sifu Chen Ying, the video was inspired — complete with aging film grain — by the opening title sequences from all those old school Shaw Brothers movies.