Few stories in the life of Bruce Lee have taken on as much legendary status as that of his famed private duel with his fellow kung fu master, Wong Jack-man. The fight has been the subject of controversy and debate for decades, and soon, audiences will have the chance to see a modern retelling of the famed match-up in the upcoming “Birth of the Dragon”, in the newly released trailer which you can see below!
Directed by “The Adjustment Bureau” auteur George Nolfi, the film premiered at the 2016 Toronto International Film Festival, and is said to take a fablizing approach to its retelling of the famous duel. Rising star Phillip Ng steps into the role of Bruce Lee while Xia Yu portrays Wong Jack-man, with Billy Magnussen playing an up and coming martial arts student who reportedly serves as an analogue for Bruce’s real-life disciple, Steve McQueen. Famed fight choreographer and alumni of the Peking Opera Academy, Corey Yuen serves as the film’s action director.
This isn’t the first time the famed smackdown has been showcased for cinema screens. The fight was previously depicted in the 1993 biopic “Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story”, with Jason Scott Lee assuming the the title role and John Cheung portraying Johnny Sun, the film’s analogue for Wong Jack-man. The sequence proved to be arguably the best fight in the film, and you certainly would never guess that Jason Scott Lee was a newcomer to martial arts at the time. We can only hope the recreation of their duel in “Birth of the Dragon” is as finely tuned as the first go around, which you can see below.
“Birth of the Dragon” is set to release on August 25th. Stay tuned for more info as the film punches through!