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Donnie Yen was nearly blinded by Jet Li - twice

Donnie Yen and Jet Li have made a couple of great action movies together, but the encounters were almost quite bad for Yen's health.

Donnie Yen in Once Upon A Time In China 2

Doing action movies can be bad for your health, especially if you like to do your own stunts or fight scenes. Donnie Yen, a legend of martial arts thriller movies, revealed that on two separate occasions, fellow icon Jet Li nearly took his eye out.

He explained the incidents during an interview with GQ. The first time was in Once Upon a Time in China 2. Li and Yen were doing a stunt where they were suspended by ropes, holding bamboo staffs. During an exchange, Li got a little close for comfort while making the adventure movie.

“There was a move where he spun around 360 degrees, he swings at me and I block it. After about 30 takes, he missed,” Yen recalls. “Instead of coming across, and I’m supposed to block it like this, he comes across horizontally. He whacked me right on my eyebrow, right? I got knocked back about eight feet. Five seconds later, I said, ‘Wait!’ Drop my hands, and blood was spilling.”

Yen likens the amount of blood to Kill Bill, but then says it almost happened again for science fiction movie The One. This time, Li almost got the other eye, using a prop sword.

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“At the end of the 50 movies, maybe the 48th, 49 moves, he strikes down with his sword. He went, ‘Boop!’,” Yen explains. “As I backed up, Jet said, ‘Donnie, there’s blood spilling out of your face’. I said, ‘Really? Let me take a look’. He whacked me on one side and ten years later, he whacked me on the other side.”

Yen points out he could’ve been blinded, but thankfully he wasn’t, and these are just funny anecdotes from two bona fide heroes. You can find Yen on the big screen when the John Wick 4 release date rolls around, have a look at our new movies list for what else is coming to cinemas.