- Ang Lee’s upcoming Bruce Lee biopic will largely focus on the period around the making of Lee’s iconic film “Enter the Dragon.”
- The film will explore the “incredible amount of drama and conflict” in Lee’s life during that time, using it as the axis for the movie’s narrative structure.
- “Enter the Dragon” solidified Bruce Lee’s place as one of the greatest martial arts performers and grossed $400 million worldwide, making it a significant part of his legacy.
Ang Lee’s upcoming Bruce Lee biopic revolves around the making of one of the martial arts legend’s most iconic films. He died tragically young at the age of 32, but those years were all he needed to establish a cinematic legacy that has inspired multiple generations of performers and filmmakers. Now thanks to the Oscar-winning director of Life of Pi, iconic martial arts performer Lee will finally receive the biopic treatment, with the director’s own son Mason Lee taking on the lead role.
The title of this upcoming biographical film has not yet been unveiled, but at least one other important detail on the film has now been revealed. Speaking to Collider, producer Lawrence Grey spoke about working with director Lee to settle on a structure for the movie, and said it will largely focus on a particular period of its subject’s life, revolving mostly around the making of Lee’s most iconic film Enter the Dragon. Check out what Grey said in the space below:
What we realized was that the time period of Bruce’s life around the making of ‘Enter the Dragon’ was a moment where so many different thematic threads were connecting, and there was a confluence of an incredible amount of drama and conflict in his life. So, we use that as sort of an axis around which to revolve his world. From there, I think the director would say it’s a kaleidoscopic journey through his life. It has a traditional non-narrative structure and is really thematically and experientially connected.
Enter the Dragon Cemented Bruce Lee’s Legacy
Lee starred in many Hong Kong films as a child actor, later moving to America to serve as an action director on movies like Dean Martin’s Wrecking Crew, while starring on the series The Green Hornet in the role of Kato. But it was with 1971’s Hong Kong action film The Big Boss that Lee was finally launched on the path to iconic status. Subsequent films Fist of Fury, The Way of the Dragon and Fist of Unicorn further showcased Lee’s unique combination of martial arts mastery and raw cinematic charisma.
Released in 1973, just six days after Lee’s death, Enter the Dragon then cemented the star’s place as arguably the greatest of all martial arts performers. In the film, which incorporates elements of James Bond-like spy drama, Lee plays a martial arts instructor recruited by British intelligence to gather information on a suspected crime lord. To do so, Lee must enter a martial arts tournament pitting him against an array of opponents. As extra motivation, Lee learns that the man who killed his sister is serving as the bodyguard of the crime lord.
Containing several of Lee’s most memorable on-screen fights, Enter the Dragon grossed an estimated $400 million worldwide and in 2004 was added to the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress. Given the significance of the film to Lee’s legacy, it feels entirely appropriate that the events surrounding its making should form the basis of the upcoming, long-awaited biopic on the legendary star.