That wasn’t really my intent, and perhaps implies that The Forbidden Kingdom is having more influence on my that it actually does. Though it is indeed a pretty cool and quite enjoyable movie.
Basically, in reading more about The Forbidden Kingdom, I’ve found a couple pieces of trivia that are interesting to be worth sharing. The first was really just the opportunity to do a Journey to the West themed doodle.
Getting to that, you’ll remember, perhaps, that the biggest draw when The Forbidden Kingdom was first released was the opportunity to see Jackie Chan and Jet Li fight.
Which is significant because Jet Li has also played Wong Fei-hung.
It’s less of a coincidence than it sounds.
Wong Fei-hung is one of China’s most famous martial artists and has, according to Wikipedia, been the subject of 123 films — including, incidentally, 77 where he was portrayed by the same actor, the record for number of times the same actor has played the same character.
So, yeah, it’s an interesting footnote to talking about The Forbidden Kingdom, but maybe not that interest. Maybe a bit like noting that two famous British actors have both been Hamlet.
The contrast between the two portrayals are pretty interesting, though — I’m sure you could write a solid mid-level Film Studies paper about it. Though, of course, if you’re going to, I demand a citation in your bibliography.
The Drunken Master movies are comedic movies, which is pretty much Jackie Chan’s thing. The Once Upon a Time in China movies are much more serious and unironic action movies.
Final sidebar: Jackie Chan is also classically trained in Chinese opera and has done several of his own theme songs, including this one. Sidebar to the sidebar: he was also Mulan’s commanding officer in the Chinese dub of Mulan.