Jackie Chan-mania swept America when Rumble in the Bronx gave movie audiences a thrilling look at the athletic actor known for performing his own jaw-dropping stunts. The Essential Jackie Chan Sourcebook reveals everything you want to know about the dare-devil dynamo who is part Buster Keaton, part Bruce Lee, and a truly unique performer in his own right -- and whose devoted cult following is exploding into international stardom.
With straight talk about his rise from Hong Kong's hometown hero to Hollywood megastar, get to know the professional and persoanl Jackie Chan through
His revealing biography
A complete filmography -- from his early roles to the recent star vehicles Operation Condor and Thunderbolt
His peak performance workout
His "Catalogue of Pain" -- from concussions to broken bones -- and his many stunt work near misses
His awards and accolades
Up-to-the-minute internet news and fan club information
And much more!
Forget Stallone, Schwarzenegger and Van Damme. There's only one Jackie Chan -- and only one complete guide to the ultimate action film phenomenon!
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September 30, 1997
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Excerpt from The Essential Jackie Chan Source Book by Jeff Rovin
From Chapter 7: TheUninsurableJackie Chan The most obvious result of his King of the Stunt Hill status is that no insurance company in the world will touch Chan, at least while he's doing high-degree-of-difficulty stunts. Which means that if he sustains a career-ending injury in the middle of a $20 million film, it's bye-bye to the production company's money if they can't somehow finish the film.That's not as big a risk as it may seem to a company like Golden Harvest, which has made zillions off of Jackie. However, itwouldbe a big deal to an American studio. The odds are, if Jackie ever does hook up with an American studio or production company, he would either have to appreciably tone down his let's-see-just-how-dangerous-l-can-make this-stunt bravado, or he'd have to guarantee financing somehow.Ironically, although Hollywood today is known for its super-duper special effects and blue screen techniques, Chan is really a throwback to the "real" Hollywood.For example, that was no stunt double half freezing to death on an ice floe inBroken Blossoms. Nor was Lillian Gish simply "acting" frightened as her chunk of ice floated slowly toward a waterfall -- she was probably terrified. One never knew just what D.W. Griffith might think would be a swell shot. Jackie is much more the standard-bearer for Hollywood's golden age than Tinseltown's current crop of action heroes.But for how much longer? Even Jackie realizes the day is fast approaching when he will perform his last outrageous stunt and hang up his book of over-the-top stunt tricks and concentrate on something less dangerous. Hopefully, when that happens it will be because his body is simply worn out or he decides the risks finally outweigh the benefits -- rather than it being forced on him because of a stunt gone terribly wrong resulting in cataclysmic injury.Until that time comes, though, Jackie continues to rack up injuries by the emergency roomful. Below is an accounting of the major injuries he's received during his career. The key word here ismajor. On the Jackie scale of physical damages things like sprains and minor cuts hardly register. The most amazing thing about the catalog of pain listed below is that Chan is able to move at all anymore, much less regularly push his body to the limit -- and beyond.CONCUSSION --Hand of Death(1975)Even before he became well known, Chan had earned a reputation for doing overly dangerous stunts. In this case, not even the help of wires prevented injury while costarring in this John Woo film.In the stunt, Jackie jumped off a truck onto a trampoline, and a wire was supposed to pull him back. But Chan lost his balance during the jump. When the wire yanked Jackie back, he hit his head and had no idea where he was.Chan admits it hurt so badly he cried. But instead of taking a break, he went back and did a second take immediately -- and promptly passed out when it was over. It took over a half hour for Jackie to regain consciousness, during which the then-new director Woo was convinced Jackie was critically injured and going to die.Instead, Chan woke up, and when it was discovered he was passing blood, Woo insisted he receive immediate medical attention. All things considered, it's kind of ironic that Woo would be so upset at the sight of a little blood, isn't it?FRONT TOOTH --Snake in the Eagle's Shadow(1977)When this film was made, Huang Cheng-li was famous far and wide for his lightning kicks -- a fact Chan discovered d firsthand. During one of the fight sequences, Huang and Jackie in the face, knocking out a tooth -- actually a cap -- on injuring Chan's ego. Jackie claimed Huang disfiguredhim on purpose and actually demanded the kick-meisterbe fired.Not surprisingly, Chan's overreaction was ignored and the filming went on.BROKEN HIP --Magnificent Bodyguard(1978)Another clue that l