In their story on Birth of the Dragon, The Hollywood Reporter refer to this sorta Bruce Lee biopic as an “origin movie.” If Lee wasn’t a legend in his lifetime, it seems he is now – this is the kind of silly talk normally reserved for a film about a superhero, Greek God or Robin Hood.
The true-life spark that ignites the film’s story will be a scrap between Bruce Lee and Wong Jack Man in 1965. Lee later recounted the fight to Black Belt magazine:
I’d gotten into a fight in San Francisco with a kung fu cat, and after a brief encounter, the son of a bitch started to run. I chased him and, like a fool, kept punching him behind his head and back. Soon my fists began to swell from hitting his hard head.
Apparently, the fight wasn’t literally in San Francisco but somewhere else around the bay area; also, I’m pretty sure that Wong Jack Man wasn’t literally a cat.
But when it comes to dressing up the facts, Lee has nothing on the film’s screenwriters Christopher Wilkinson and Stephen Rivele.
In their version of events Lee and Man have their fight then team up to take on bay area gangsters. This didn’t actually happen, but… well, MOAR FIGHTING.
This film will need a heck of a director, and casting somebody to play the leads, particularly Bruce Lee, might prove tricky.