He was recently at the Udine Far East Film Festival in Italy where he talked in a collective interview about his career.
City on Fire were there to cover the event and one question which really stood out from one of the journalists was “Less and less good movies are made in Hong Kong, and I wanted to ask you what will you do. Will you do something to save the Hong Kong movie market or will you abandon it and move to mainland China?“
“SAMMO HUNG: Now, the problem is nobody in Hong Kong is making kung fu movies. Even for the last 5 years. There is no training platform for the students. 20 years ago, 30 years ago, they have the training and they thought, with hard work, I can be an action star. Now, we don’t have these kinds of dreamers who want to shoot the movies. This is the problem in Hong Kong. The young kids, they don’t dream. They become waiters. Or they dream of being singers, dancers, and TV is very popular. So they go this way, they don’t think “I need to train hard”.
Mainland China is young in terms of the movie market, and in ten years they have grown up. Sammo Hung, Jackie Chan and Yuen Baio are popular until now. How many new action stars coming up? Only 5 or 6. Now in Mainland China there are kids training… they all know kung fu. So now they need a chance, so we will see the next generation of kung fu movie stars. Immediately, in my mind, I want to establish my own company in Shanghai. I will set up martial arts schools and call all the Martial Arts Champions and students to come. And of course, they will have to love movie making, acting as well.
I want to create an opportunity for them to train to be kung fu stars. So my next goal is to find the next kung fu actors from China. If I discover these people, they don’t need to only work for me. I will be equally proud and happy if they can become a success in all the areas of movie production. So I will stay behind them and wish them success. I’m not Jackie Chan. Jackie Chan is a hero. In my movies before, you can see there are so many actors, I’m not the top guy. I love movies, I love characters. I love people who can do a good job. They work for me, they don’t work for me, I’m happy. “
People like Sammo Hung are an inspiration and I love the idea that he wants to find the next kung fu actors from China; it’s sad that there are so few new action stars coming up and I hope this changes.
Source: City on Fire