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xlee - Animated Man Celebrities/Music
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BRUCE LEE FACTS

The Mystery of Bruce Lee's Death

Bruce Lee, dressed in the traditional Chinese outfit he wore in the movie Enter The Dragon, was laid to rest in Lakeview Cemetery in Seattle in late July of 1973. But long before Lee's sudden and tragic death in a Hong Kong apartment at age 32, rumors were rife throughout the Orient that he had been wounded or killed in fights.

"One day, I got a long-distance call from Hong Kong's largest newspaper," Lee recalled. "They asked me if I was still alive. 'Guess who you are talking to?' I replied."

Thus, when Lee actually did die, speculation abounded as to the cause. The rumors ranged from Lee being killed by Hong Kong triads (gangsters) because he refused to pay them protection money - —something that was common for Chinese movie stars to do at that time —to his being killed by an angry martial artist's dim mak (death touch) strike. Some people claimed Lee was cursed—he had just bought a house in Hong Kong that was supposed to be haunted—or that he had died while mking love to actress Betty Tingpei, or that he had angered the Chinese martial arts community by teaching foreigners, and that he had been killed in a challenge match.

Many Chinese believed Lee was the victim of too much gum Ilk (intensity) in his training, while others cited drug use as the cause for his sudden demise. Still others believed that Lee's fate was sealed at birth, that it was in the stars. And, finally, there are those who think Lee's death was staged, and that he is merely waiting for the right time to return to society.

The facts of the case are this: Lee died after falling into a coma. The coroner's report was inconclusive, and medical authorities came up with five reasons for Lee's untimely death. However, they all agreed that it was caused by a cerebral edema (a swelling of the brain caused by a congestion of fluid). But what caused the edema became a matter of speculation. For the most part, the course of events on that fateful July day in 1973 can be pieced together. According to Lee's wife, Linda, Bruce met film producer Raymond Chow at 2 p.m. at home to discuss the making of Game of Death. They worked until 4 p.m., and then drove together to the home of Betty Tingpei, a Taiwanese actress who was to also have a leading role in the film. The three went over the script at Tingpei's home, and then Chow left to attend a dinner meeting.

A short time later, Lee complained of a headache and Tingpei gave him a tablet of Equagesic—a kind of super sapirin. Apart from that, Lee reportedly consumed nothing but a couple of soft drinks.

At around 7:30 p.m., Lee lay down for a nap and was still asleep when Chow called to ask why he and Tingpei had not yet shown up for dinner as planned. The actress told Chow she could not wake Lee. The ensuing autopsy found traces of cannabis in Lee's stomach, but the significance of this discovery is debatable. Some believe the cannabis caused a chemical reaction that led to the cerebral edema, but the coroner's inquiry refutes this theory. In fact, one doctor was quoted as saying that the cannabis being in Lee's stomach was "no more significant than if Bruce had drunk a cup of tea that day."

Dr. R.R. Lycette of Queen Elizabeth Hospital viewed Lee's death as a hypersensitivity to one or more of the compounds found in the headache tablet he consumed that afternoon. Although his skull showed no injury, his brain had swollen considerably, from 1,400 to 1,575 grams. None of the blood vessels were blocked or broken, so the possibility of a hemorrhage was ruled out. All of Lee's internal organs were meticulously examined, and the only "foreign" substance to be found was the Equagesic.

Chow came to the apartment and could not wake Lee either. A doctor was summoned, and he spent 10 minutes attempting to revive the martial artist before sending him by ambulance to Queen Elizabeth Hospital. By the time he reached the hospital, Lee was dead .

Foul play was immediately suspected as having a role in Lee's passing. Chow appeared on television to try to settle the public furor that quickly developed. He explained what happened, omitting only the fact that Lee had not died at home. The press soon uncovered the truth, however, and demanded to know what Chow was trying to cover up. R.D. Teare, a professor of forensic medicine at the University of London who had overseen more than 90,000 autopsies, was called in and declared that it was basically impossible for the cannabis to be a factor in Lee's death. In Teare's opinion, the edema was caused by hypersensitivity to either meprobamate or aspirin, or a combination of both. His view was accepted by authorities, and a determination of "misadventure" was stamped on Lee's death.

Strangely, an early death was a conceivability that Lee had contemplated with surprising frequency. According to his wife Linda, he had no wish to live to a ripe old age because he could not stand the idea of losing the physical abilities he had strived so hard to achieve.

"If I should die tomorrow," he used to say, "I will have no regrets. I did what I wanted to do. You can't expect more from life."


"With nothing but his hands, feet and a lot of attitude, he turned the little guy into a tough guy." -- Time

In 1959 a short, skinny, bespectacled 18-year-old kid from Hong Kong traveled to America and declared himself to be John Wayne, James Dean, Charles Atlas and the guy who kicked your butt in junior high. In an America where the Chinese were still stereotyped as meek house servants and railroad workers, Bruce Lee was all steely sinew, threatening stare and cocky, pointed finger--a Clark Kent who didn't need to change outfits. He was the redeemer, not only for the Chinese but for all the geeks and dorks and pimpled teenage masses that washed up at the theaters to see his action movies. He was David, with spin-kicks and flying leaps more captivating than any slingshot.

As an exceptional martial artist, Lee's ability to synthesize various national martial techniques sparked a new trend in unarmed combat martial arts films. His talent shifted the focus from martial arts director to martial arts actor.

Since 1973, the year Bruce Lee died and his famous motion picture Enter the Dragon was released, movies have been the single most influential factor behind the growing popularity of martial arts. Lee’s cinematic success spawned a global industry of the martial arts, and schools opened and flourished worldwide. During the 1970s more students took up the study of martial arts than at any time before or since. To those involved in martial arts, the years from 1972 to 1975—the height of Lee’s popularity—are often cited as the Bruce Lee era.

Biography of Bruce Lee
Bruce Lee (Lee Hsiao Lung), was born in San Fransisco in November 1940 the son of a famous Chinese opera singer. Bruce moved to Hong Kong when he soon became a child star in the growing Eastern film industry. His first film was called The birth of Mankind, his last film which was uncompleted at the time of his death in 1973 was called Game of Death. Bruce was a loner and was constantly getting himself into fights, with this in mind he looked towards Kung Fu as a way of disciplining himself. The famous Yip Men taught Bruce his basic skills, but it was not long before he was mastering the master. Yip Men was acknowledged to be one of the greatest authorities on the subject of Wing Chun a branch of the Chinese Martial Arts. Bruce mastered this before progressing to his own style of Jeet Kune Do.

At the age of 19 Bruce left Hong Kong to study for a degree in philosophy at the University of Washington in America. It was at this time that he took on a waiter's job and also began to teach some of his skills to students who would pay. Some of the Japanese schools in the Seattle area tried to force Bruce out, and there was many confrontations and duels fought for Bruce to remain.

He met his wife Linda at the University he was studying. His Martial Arts school flourished and he soon graduated. He gained some small roles in Hollywood films - Marlowe- etc, and some major stars were begging to be students of the Little Dragon. James Coburn, Steve McQueen and Lee Marvin to name but a few. He regularly gave displays at exhibitions, and it was during one of these exhibitions that he was spotted by a producer and signed up to do The Green Hornet series. The series was quite successful in the States - but was a huge hit in Hong Kong. Bruce visited Hong Kong in 1968 and he was overwhelmed by the attention he received from the people he had left.

He once said on a radio program if the price was right he would do a movie for the Chinese audiences. He returned to the States and completed some episodes of Longstreet. He began writing his book on Jeet Kune Do at roughly the same time.

Back in Hong Kong producers were desperate to sign Bruce for a Martial Arts film, and it was Raymond Chow the head of Golden Harvest who produced The Big Boss. The rest as they say is history.

Bruce’s hand assaults against rival Bob Wall in Enter The Dragon were so fast during initial filming that the camera speed had to be increased in order to successfully see them on the screen. Bruce Lee's first Hong Kong produced feature film The Big Boss was a massive hit and out-grossed The Sound Of Music, taking in more than $3.5 million in it’s first three weeks of release. Lee studied with different masters of classical martial arts forms, but became dissatisfied with them. He took the best of all of those arts, combined his own ideas and created his own style called Jun Fan Gung Fu, a modification of Wing Chun combined with western boxing and fencing. This would later lead to his own refined school of the martial arts: Jeet Kune Do. Bruce received his high school diploma from Edison Technical School in Seattle, Washington. Though his martial arts philosophy was controversial, Lee is widely considered to be the greatest martial arts film actor of the 20th century. Short in stature but not in ability, Bruce was just 5' 7½" tall. Bruce had two sisters and two brothers. Bruce was a Philosophy major at the University of Washington. One of Bruce's legs was almost a whole inch longer than the other, causing pain from the misalignment of his spine, which he had to overcome through weight training and conditioning. Growing up, Bruce was very near-sighted, and wore thick lensed glasses. Only after his acting career took off did he switch to contact lenses. Lee's first fame came as a child star in many Hong Kong movies. He was six years old when he did his first film The Orphan. Bruce had ...


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