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Additional Info on the Kung Fu book & Lee’s ETD character

January 7 2017 at 7:56 AM
LJF  (Login LJF)


Response to Bruce Lee: Fighter AND Writer in ETD

 
Just to add on further info to the above topic.

1) About the Chinese BOOK in ETD
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Indeed, based on the original script, Bruce’s character, Lee in ETD is a highly skilled martial artist from Shaolin Temple cum secret agent as well as a writer on martial arts books.
The Chinese book which Bruce’s character, Lee picked up and grinned at it when he entered his room in the deleted ETD scene is actually a Kung Fu manual written by Lee himself.

The translation of the Chinese title on the front book cover is:
“SHAOLIN TEMPLE -- JUN KEUNG KUNE FA & PRACTISE VOLUME 3”

On the back of the book cover is a small portrait of Bruce in black suit and dotted shirt, and underneath his photo, the translated text is as follows:
“THE BOOK AUTHOR – LEE JUN KEUNG”

Right below Bruce’s photo and the author’s name, the translated text appear as follows:
“DISTRIBUTED BY WORLD BOOK CO.
PRINTED BY HK TRADEMARK PRINTING AGENCY
COPYRIGHT. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.”

According to the original script, Bruce’s ETD character, Lee (in his big, loose Dishdasha-like pajamas) had just completed his new book and politely requested his father (the elderly man in traditional Chinese clothing) to send it for printing. But before doing so, his father revealed to Bruce about the tragic death of his sister few years ago which he was unaware of (probably Lee was learning Kung Fu in Shaolin Temple and was away from home for few years)……

Trivia:

a) Since the above book that was found in Lee’s room (in Han’s island) is Vol.3, then Lee must have released Vol.1 & 2 before. Therefore, the new book which he asked his father to send for publishing should be Vol.4;

b) The photo on the book was actually one of the photos Bruce received his trophy in the Top 10 HK Movie Stars Award on 20th Dec 1972. (refer to photo link below)

c) This book is a movie prop done by the HK ETD’s prop team, and the idea is most likely contributed by Bruce. The prop only has a front and back cover and the content is empty. On 16th July 2009, this original prop was one of the 300 items (from HK Bruce Lee Club and HK BL fans) that was displayed in the HK Bruce Lee’s Collectables Exhibition.

d) Han got his men to place Lee’s book in his room meant he already knew Lee’s identity, i.e. author of the book and Kung Fu practitioner from Shaolin Temple (but not his secret agent’s identity and his real intention in participating in the tournament). Han welcome global martial arts experts to join his organization as his empire was expanding (he needed various drug sales agents to sell drugs to different parts of the world) and his wealth would thus, continue to grow through international drug dealings.

e) Besides Bolo and Ohara, there seems no highly-skilled experts surrounding and protecting Han though Han was an expert in Shaolin Kung Fu himself (a traitor of Shaolin Temple as well). The beautiful young lady bodyguard team, about 8-10 of them were supposed to be good in martial arts but not as good as Bolo and Ohara. Ahna Capri played a beautiful but non-martial arts PR role. In my opinion, if, only if the director could get Angela Mao to play one of the villain lady guards (instead of the sister role, Maria Yi or Nora Miao could be the replacement. Betty Chung still played Mei Ling, the lady secret agent), and fight again Lee just after he had killed Bolo and Ohara, prior to Han’s fight, this would surely be another highlight of the show because we all know Angela Mao is capable of displaying good Kung Fu skill. Of course, her supporters wouldn’t like her to be in a villain role.


2)Bruce’s Character in ETD
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a) In ETD, Bruce character’s name is Lee (in English and still Mr. Lee in Chinese). Actually, based on the abovementioned book, his full name was “Lee Jun Keung”, almost similar to “Lee Jun Fan”, Bruce’s original name. Jun Keung, literally means to rise up strongly, a popular Chinese male name, which was why Bruce picked this name. It was used by director Ng See Yuen for his Tower of Death’s lead character (played by both Kim Tai Jung and Bruce, using his unused ETD footage) but was killed half way through the movie. His younger brother, Lee Jun Kwok (literally means to rise up for the country, played by Kim Tai Jung again) revenged his brother’s death. Since they were unused in ETD, Ng See Yuen saw the opportunity and adapted Lee’s name as well as Bruce’s unused footage from ETD for his Tower of Death (aka Game of Death 2).

b) Bruce’s character was a cool, righteous, philosophical and highly skilled martial artist from Shaolin Temple, which actually exists in Henan province, mainland China. So, the one that showed in ETD, is an imaginary Shaolin Temple in HK. Of course, there are quite a few Buddhist temples in HK but not the original Shaolin temple that teaches Shaolin Kung Fu. One would wonder why Bruce, a monk from Shaolin was not shaved bald? The explanation to that is Bruce’s character, Lee, is a Shaolin external disciple which practice Buddhism outside the temple. Unlike the internal disciple, i.e. monk, Bruce need not shaved his hair and resides in the monastery or temple forever. An external disciple could temporarily stay in the holy Shaolin Temple to practice his martial arts and Buddhism, for instance 1-3 years before returning to the secular world.

c) Also, in the original script, there is supposed to have a steamy scene where Lee and Mei Ling had a shower and love scene. But this was not shot. Unlike Roper and Williams who made love to the Han’s beautiful ladies, Bruce definitely would not allow his hero image be “ruined by these love scenes.” Another excuse he could use is Lee is a holy monk (external) and is thus, prohibited from womanizing as this is one of the taboos of the Shaolin Temple.

d) However, many HK and South-East Asian Chinese audience misunderstood the original theme and did not buy the westernized idea of ETD though the director attempted to make it as Oriental as possible. Sometimes it seems really hard to strike a balance. The end result was ETD grossed just over HK$4 million in HK and did not fare better than FOF or WOTD (HK Box Office) which were produced mainly for the Asian audience. Moreover, the overall world-wide grossing of ETD over the years had made up for this little regret and it is ranked among one of the “Top 100 films” a fan must see in his life, according to the international film critics.

Deleted Scenes & the Chinese version ETD
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a) There are quite a few deleted scenes from ETD which are yet to restore in its entirety. Few were found in Tower of Death, like Lee walking through the bushes before meeting Braithwaite, Lee entering his room in Han’s island and picking up his martial arts manual with a smile. Also, the scene where Betty Chung’s character - Mei Ling, fought the guards before releasing the prisoners, Lee broke a glass panel in one of the scenes as recalled by Henry Wong etc.

b) According to HK BL researcher, Stephen Au Kam-Tong, the 2 reels of footage which he found in the archive vault were converted to 3 DVDs. First, being the complete unedited GAME footage not in sequence, including NGs, unseen takes etc (likely runs longer than the one found by Bey Logan). Second, being the complete edited GAME footage ((complete shot of 3rd floor to 5th floor (with Chieh Yuen’s log footage) and neatly edited in sequence by Bruce, probably the one which he showed to George Lazenby on his arrival to HK not the John Little’s Warrior’s Journey version or Japanese Artport version)). The last being the original unedited Chinese version ETD that has never shown in the theatre before, which meant the one released and dubbed in Mandarin and the international English version ETD are both different versions from this one. According to Stephen, this original unedited Chinese version ETD footage contains some scenes which had not been shown in the cinema.

c) BL fans would surely hope all the shot ETD scenes would be restored in its entirety (as according to the script as possible) one day, though it might be a vague dream for the time being yet no one can say for sure in the future since technology is ever increasingly advanced. It’s just a matter of whether the responsible parties have the intention and determination to do so for the fans.


Photos of the “Jun Keung Boxing Manual” in the deleted ETD scene: https://s27.postimg.org/98bpd21j7/book1.jpg

 
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Responses

  • Questions for LJF - KFMan on Jan 7, 2017, 5:18 PM
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  • Excellent info! - Steven C. on Jan 7, 2017, 5:47 PM
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  • Re: Additional Info on the Kung Fu book & Lee’s ETD character - sdog2006 on Jan 7, 2017, 6:29 PM
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