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China and the USA seem increasingly to be at each other’s throats politically so it’s worth celebrating the birthday (April 7, 1954) of Jackie Chan the, martial artist, actor, stuntman and filmmaker adored in both countries.

Born in Hong Kong he was an energetic, almost hyperactive, child. At the China Drama Academy, he excelled in in martial arts and acrobatics. After entering the film industry he sharpened up his martial arts skills further by getting a black belt in hap ki do and achieving high standards in karate, judo, taekwando and jeet kune do.

The dangerous nature of his stunts makes it difficult to get insurance, especially in the United States where his stunt work is contractually limited. Chan holds the Guinness World Record for “Most Stunts by a Living Actor”, which emphasizes that “no insurance company will underwrite Chan’s productions in which he performs all his own stunts”.

Now a Hollywood fixture as an actor and director his movies have grossed $2.44 billion in the United States and $1.24 billion) in China. Let’s make that $5 billion worldwide.

He has funded the establishment of schools in poor regions of China.

Not so much the way of the fist, but the way of the heart.

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