Inspiration from Jackie Chan
Estimated Lesson Time: 2 minutes
Jackie Chan (1954–) is a director, producer, stuntman, and actor. Jackie is one of the few martial artists who has managed to make it “big” in Hollywood.
Success is not always doing what is popular, or what others want. After spending years working as a stuntman under the security of the academy where Chan studied, much to his family’s dismay, Jackie went off on his own.
Success is standing out from the crowd. As a stuntman in Bruce Lee’s 1972 hit film Fist of Fury, Jackie reportedly completed the highest fall in the history of the Chinese film industry.
Success is having a solid reputation. As the film industry grew crowded, and stunt work dwindled, Jackie was still able to find work due to his reputation as a fearless stuntman.
Success does not come easily. In perfecting his craft, Jackie has broken his nose three times, his ankle, most of his fingers, both his cheekbones and his skull (patched together with a steel plate).
Success is finding your own place. Shorty after Bruce Lee’s death, Jackie, like most martial artists at the time, was unsuccessful at becoming the “next Bruce Lee.” It was not until Jackie invented his own unique film style by combining humor and death-defying stunts that he became famous as an actor.
Success is being inspired. Jackie got inspiration for his humorous/crazy film style from legendary film clowns such as Buster Keaton and Harold Lloyd.
Success is creating opportunity from problems. During the filming of one of Jackie’s earlier movies, so many stuntmen were injured that none would agree to work with Chan again. In response, Jackie founded the Jackie Chan Stuntmen Association, whose members he personally trained and paid their medical bills.
Success does not happen overnight. Jackie’s dream was always to be an international movie star. Although he has been well known in Hong Kong for decades, it was not until about 1996 when Jackie had his first American hit, Rumble in the Bronx. It took Jackie about 40 years to realize his ultimate dream.
Success is having a winning smile. Perhaps a large part of Jackie’s success is due to his great smile that he always seems to be wearing... who knows.
[Sources: http://www.biography.com, http://www.hkfilm.net, http://www.tiscali.co.uk]
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Some discussion questions (some may not apply to this lesson):
- Have you implemented this idea in your life? How has it been working for you?
- Do you have any interesting stories related to this lesson? Do tell!
- What do you admire most about this person? (success biography days)