“Never Worry About It”: Bruce Lee Once Dismissed Concerning News About His Iconic Film With Chuck Norris

Published 03/21/2023, 12:45 PM EDT

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Bruce Lee, an actor, and martial arts icon, hardly needs an introduction. Even though the great actor passed away at the young age of 32, the martial arts community still has a lot to learn from the icon’s legacy. Lee quickly went from being a brilliant actor to a pioneer of a new kind of MMA. The legend was well-known for lavishly funding his films, and the classic Return of the Dragon was no exception.

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In 1972, an action comedy film titled Return of the Dragon (originally titled The Way of the Dragon) was released. The inclusion of Chuck Norris, a legend in American martial arts, helped boost its popularity. Mathew Polly, an American author who wrote Lee’s biography, describes how the director exceeded the movie’s budget and avoided answering many questions about it at a press conference.

The way Bruce Lee tackled those questions

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Bruce Lee and his crew, which included Chuck Norris and Bob Wall, landed at Hong Kong’s Kai Tak Airport on May 18, 1972. After filming the legendary climactic battle between Lee and Norris at the Colosseum in Rome, Italy, the A-list cast and crew went home. Nevertheless, the whole team was greeted by a group of reporters interested in learning more about the film, upon hearing rumors that Lee had overspent on the production. The Little Phoenix, however, never showed any signs of displeasure and instead seemed somewhat confident while speaking with the press.

In the biography, Matthew Polly mentions how Lee dodged the questions of the reporters perfectly, saying, “I have not estimated the expenditure and never worry about it. I believe if it is worthwhile to spend the money, then I spend it. Otherwise I would not waste the money, as the first priority is to think what is reasonably needed, and then the profit will follow.”

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The iconic scene was a real hit

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As history shows, the movie was an undeniable hit, and the fight scene between Norris and Lee, a worldwide phenomenon. In addition to his top-notch action, the public will remember the epic clash between the two legends for the lesson it taught. The film’s 1972 premiere was pivotal in altering the American population’s impressions of Chinese people.

Lee, who moves at the speed of light, and Norris, who is built like a brick, fought in the film. After 10 minutes of battling, Norris’s character, Colt, is defeated by Lee, a master of Kung Fu. The stereotype of Chinese men as being weak and subservient was dispelled by Lee. The legend’s portrayal of a heroic and fierce character countered long-held assumptions about his own culture, paving the way for a legacy of inclusivity and representation. Indeed, the expenditure turned out to be a long-term profit.

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What do you think of the way Lee countered the rumors? Let us know in the comment section.

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Written by:

Rahul Goutam Hoom

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Rahul Goutam Hoom is a US Sports writer for EssentiallySports. He is currently pursuing his Master's in Mass Communication and Journalism from Birla Global University. Rahul does photography and gaming during his leisure hours and likes to watch anime.
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Edited by:

Anupama Ghosh

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