Donnie Yen didn’t become the most bankable leading man in Hong Kong overnight.
The martial arts superstar opens up about struggles, strife, and ultimate success.
Things have not been looking bright in the world of Chinese martial arts movies. Sammo Hung is getting fatter; Jet Li keeps on confusing the world with his wushu movie retirement; Jackie Chan is selling shampoo; and Bruce Lee is still dead.
All these, to the relief of many, have been rendered academic since a certain bloke called Donnie Yen became widely mistaken in our public consciousness for an altogether different man – called Ip Man (no relation to Iron Man), who’s perhaps better known as Bruce Lee’s Wing Chun mentor. “Ip Man changed everything,” Yen says of his starring role in the acclaimed 2008 period biopic when we meet at the weekend.