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Jackie Chan once pretended to be hurt so Bruce Lee would hold him

There are not many people who'd take a beating from Bruce Lee, but Jackie Chan put himself in the line of danger just to get close to the martial arts master.

Bruce Lee in Enter the Dragon and Jackie Chan and Chris Tucker in Rush Hour

How far would you go to feel the touch of a martial arts legend? Well, Jackie Chan once took the opportunity to get close to Bruce Lee by pretending he was badly hurt during a stunt, just so his hero would hold him a little longer.

Jackie Chan may be something of an icon himself, but it’s safe to say that, were it not for Bruce Lee, the path to stardom would have been much more difficult for Chan. Indeed, Lee made some of the best action movies of all time, and helped to ensure Asian culture, actors, and stories were given the respect they deserve.

Enter the Dragon, one of the best movies ever made, saw a young Jackie Chan come up against his idol in one chaotic fight scene. Speaking to George Stroumboulopoulos, Chan shared his best story ever, and it involved milking an injury to get Lee to pay him attention.

“When I was young, doing Enter the Dragon and fighting with Bruce Lee, I was behind the camera waiting [for my cue]. Bruce was [fighting] and then I just run up and [attack] and suddenly my eyes go black. He had hit me on the side of the head with one of his sticks. I felt a little dizzy, but it’s OK. I look at Bruce Lee and he doesn’t do anything… he just keeps acting, until the director said cut,” Chan recalled.

“Then he throws the two sticks down and ran to me and lifted me up and said ‘I’m sorry, I’m sorry.’ Actually, I’m not in pain anymore, ‘cos I’m a young, tough guy, but suddenly, I don’t know why, I just pretended it was very painful,” Chan added. “I just wanted Bruce Lee to hold me as long as possible.”

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Turns out, that tactic worked pretty well. Chan remembers how Lee kept checking up on him throughout the whole day, and the incident led to them chatting about martial arts styles and Lee even learning his name. And the rest is history, as they say.

Both Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan are two of the best actors to specialize in martial arts on screen and many of the best new movies around are still trying to replicate what they have achieved.