Jackie Chan Does All His Own Infuriating Political Stunts
Jackie Chan may have confirmed his international legend as a comic-martial-arts trailblazer, but don't sell him short. In reality he's so, so much more: A restaurateur. A fashion mogul. A passionate philanthropist. And, as he reminded the world last weekend, a delightfully pro-China, anti-liberty demagogue.
Chan's comments last weekend that "[w]ith too much freedom... it can get very chaotic" and "I'm gradually beginning to feel that we Chinese need to be controlled" have made few friends outside the state palaces of Beijing, with activist groups leading the call to boycott his films and, in one case, deport the 55-year old to North Korea. The official "F!@# Jackie Chan" page is live on Facebook, and even the Hong Kong Tourism Board -- where Chan has been an ambassador for 14 years -- has received a whopping 17 complaints calling for his ouster. (An investigation is underway, a spokesperson told the AP.)
Chan last drew political fire after the Taiwanese elections of 2004, when he described progressive candidates' victory there as "the biggest joke in the world." That controversy eventually blew over; Chan's spokesman hopes this new one will as well, alleging that the media reports from the political forum where Chan spoke quoted the star out of context. He was merely referring to the entertainment industry in China, we're told, and really, why not? Wouldn't you ban the import of a Karate Kid remake into your country if you could help it? Oh. Still. If he's true to his word, this can only be good news for China in the long run. Team Jackie.