A Super Star Collector of Chinese Culture

May 10, 2016

If you enjoy watching films, you probably know who Jackie Chan is. However, outside China, many may not know he is a collector of Chinese cultural things such as rocks, old Chinese wood houses, wine, and ceramic tea cups and saucers.

Born in Hong Kong in 1954, Chan started acting in movies in 1962, and he has appeared in more than 100 films. You may remember Rush Hour 1 to 3 (1998 – 2007); The Karate Kid in 2010, and many others.  For a complete list of his films, check out IMDb.

According to Celebrity Networth.com, Chan’s estimated net worth is $230 million.

What I didn’t know until my wife Anchee Min and daughter returned from China on New Year day in 2013 was that Chan also has been collecting Chinese cultural items for decades.

Jackie Chan magazine cover

In China, Anchee bought a magazine that was exclusively about Jackie Chan’s life, film career, charitable giving and his collections.

one Jackie Chan ancient Chinese wooden structures

Asia One.com says, “Mr. Chan had started his collection (of older Chinese houses and wood structures) some 20 years ago. His collection currently comprises seven houses and an opera performing stage, dating from the Ming and Qing dynasties.”

Jackie Chan rock collection

Then as Chan aged, he became concerned that his collections survive after he was gone, so he is donating them to Singapore and Beijing.

Jackie Chan wine collection

Zee News.India.com reported, “Kung Fu movie legend Jackie Chan wants to donate historical Chinese houses worth more than 67 million US dollars to a university being set up in Singapore … Chan will give the campus seven wooden houses and a performing stage from his private collection …”

From Asian Fanatics.net we learn that Chan’s “collecting passion was also influenced by his late father, who loved old Chinese wooden houses. Chan’s dad, Charlie, died … at the age of 93 after battling cancer. The star’s love of all things historical can be seen in his property purchases. He owns the 105-year-old Jinriksha Station at 1 Neil Road, once the central depot for rickshaw drivers in Singapore, and the four-storey The 50s complex. Both are historic buildings within the Neil Road conservation area.”

Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the unique love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

#1 - Joanna Daneman review posted June 19 2014

Where to Buy

Subscribe to “iLook China”!
Sign up for an E-mail Subscription at the top of this page, or click on the “Following” tab in the WordPress toolbar at the top of the screen.

About iLook China

China’s Holistic Historical Timeline


Jackie Chan’s Cultural Collections

February 4, 2013

If you enjoy watching films, you probably know who Jackie Chan is. However, outside China, many may not know he is a collector of Chinese cultural things such as rocks, old Chinese wood houses, wine, and ceramic tea cups and saucers.

Chan started acting in movies in 1962 and now has more than 100 films under his acting belt. You may remember Rush Hour 1 to 3 (1998 – 2007); The Karate Kid in 2010, and many others.  According to Celebrity Networth.com, Chan’s estimated net worth is $130 million.

What I didn’t know until my wife and daughter returned from China on New Year day 2013 was that Chan also has been building cultural collections for decades.

Jackie Chan magazine cover

In China, my wife bought a magazine that was exclusively about Jackie Chan’s life, film career, charitable giving and his collections.

one Jackie Chan ancient Chinese wooden structures

Asia One.com says, “Mr. Chan had started his collection (of older Chinese houses and wood structures) some 20 years ago. His collection currently comprises seven houses and an opera performing stage, dating from the Ming and Qing dynasties.”

Jackie Chan rock collection

Then as Chan aged, he became concerned that his collections survive after he is gone, so he is donating them to Singapore and Beijing.

Jackie Chan wine collection

Zee News.India.com reported, “Kung Fu movie legend Jackie Chan wants to donate historical Chinese houses worth more than 67 million US dollars to a university being set up in Singapore … Chan will give the campus seven wooden houses and a performing stage from his private collection …”

Jackie Chan china collection

From Asian Fanatics.net we learn that Chan’s “collecting passion was also influenced by his late father, who loved old Chinese wooden houses. Chan’s dad, Charlie, died … at the age of 93 after battling cancer. The star’s love of all things historical can be seen in his property purchases here. He owns the 105-year-old Jinriksha Station at 1 Neil Road, once the central depot for rickshaw drivers in Singapore, and the four-storey The 50s complex. Both are historic buildings within the Neil Road conservation area.”

If you live in the United States or Canada and are interested in this copy of the Jackie Chan magazine, leave a comment for this post letting me know, and I will hold a drawing March 2013, and then mail the magazine to the winner. If no one is interested, the magazine will be recycled.

Discover China’s Rising Film Industry

______________

Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

Subscribe to “iLook China”!
Sign up for an E-mail Subscription at the top of this page, or click on the “Following” tab in the WordPress toolbar at the top of the screen.

About iLook China


The Founding of China’s Republic – a Movie Review

May 4, 2011

The Founding of a Republic was produced to coincide with the 60th anniversary (in 2009) of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) winning the Civil War in October 1949. I first saw this movie March 2011.

The film has the largest number of Chinese movie stars in one movie. Many of the top stars were invited to star as leads, supporting characters, or to appear in cameos, such as internationally well known Jackie Chan and Jet Li, whom appear briefly in the film.

The film covers the period between 1946 and October 1949 — well before the infamous failed Great Leap Forward (1958-1962) and the Cultural Revolution (1966-1976), which are the events most people in the West identify with Mao.

There is seldom any mention in the West of how Mao won the hearts and minds of the hundreds of millions of Chinese that supported the CCP, while distrusting and spurning the Nationalist Kuomintang (KMT). This film (regardless of any propaganda that may exist) provides a glimpse of how Mao accomplished this feat.

The mild dose of propaganda that does appear in the film is nothing compared to the propagandized, anti-bourgeois PRC movies of the early 1950s or 60s.

It was because of how Mao won the Civil War (1926 to 1949 with a pause during a portion of World War II) that despite the deep collective scars left by the catastrophes of the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution, that he retains a strong measure of popular affection in China to this day.

In fact, many born in China prior to the 1980s still consider Mao to be China’s George Washington.

Directors Huang Jianxin and Han Sanping provide glimpses into the key moments during the final stages of the Chinese Civil War and the film was not just glorified propaganda since the Communists are given only one third of the screen time.

More time was given to people like Zhang Lan and Li Jishen, and key members of the China Democratic League. Until I watched this film, I only knew of the KMT and the CCP. I didn’t know there were other Chinese political parties involved.

In addition, Chiang Kai-shek and his son Chiang Ching-Kuo, who later guided Taiwan’s government to become a multi-party democracy (the first direct presidential election was held in 1996 eight years after Ching-Kuo’s death), are not demonized but are played as characters trapped between their responsibilities towards their country and pleasing political factions in the KMT.

The film suggests that the KMT lost because of the political agendas of these factions within the KMT, and not because of the power of the Communists, which was unexpected in a pro-Communist film.

After all, in war there are few if any saints and politics are more complex than most people ever know.

I urge everyone interested in modern Chinese history to see this film especially students in Chinese history classes and/or those majoring in East Asian studies. People that cannot understand Mandarin will be pleased that the movie has English subtitles.

______________

Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.

If you want to subscribe to iLook China, there is a “Subscribe” button at the top of the screen in the menu bar.


Hollywood Takes the “Karate Kid” to China

June 17, 2010

I walked to the local movie theater (June, 2010) to see the new The Karate Kid staring Jaden Smith, which was filmed in China—mostly in Beijing.  It was also the biggest modern movie co-produced between an American Studio and China. The themes from the old movie were there, but I enjoyed this movie more because it delivered something the old movie didn’t—a glimpse at Chinese culture.

The Jackie Chan character lives in a Hutong.  If you want to learn more, I suggest The Last Days of Old Beijing by Michael Meyer. The Great Wall is about an hour from Beijing. I’ve been there too, but I’ve never seen it without people.

The trip to the top of Wudang Mountain, well known for its deep-rooted tradition of wushu (martial arts), took me to a place I’ve never been. Watching Jackie Chang and Jaden Smith climb that long, narrow stairway reminded me of mountains I’ve climbed that took my breath away in gasps with heart pounding.

China may not have elections where eligible citizens , stupid and smart, gets to vote as in America, but James Lassiter, a “Karate Kid” producer, says that in China The people run the country, so if people didn’t want you shooting in their neighborhood, there’s no authority that can tell them they have to. That’s why it’s called the People’s Republic of China.” Source for quote:  KansasCity.com

Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress offers another look at China.

_______________

Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

His latest novel is the multiple-award winning Running with the Enemy.

Subscribe to “iLook China”!
Sign up for an E-mail Subscription at the top of this page, or click on the “Following” tab in the WordPress toolbar at the top of the screen.

About iLook China

China’s Holistic Historical Timeline


Shadow Land

February 21, 2010

It seems that students in China may be modeling themselves after a Jackie Chan movie and playing catch-me if you can.  Harking back to a piece I wrote about Google being hacked, more evidence has been revealed that the real perpetrators may be high school students.

Now, the New York Times says, “the attacks came from China but not necessarily from the Chinese government, or even from Chinese sources.”

The NSA traced some of the attacks to servers in Taiwan.  Then a United States military contractor that faced the same attacks as Google has also led investigators to suspect a link to a specific computer science class, taught by a Ukrainian professor at a vocational school in east China’s Shandong Province. Last week, in another hacking incident, the trail led through China to Germany where that other attack originated.

What is most disturbing is the knee jerk reaction that took place when shortly after Google went public with its accusations against China without evidence, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton challenged the Chinese in a speech on Internet censors, suggesting China’s efforts to control open access to the Internet were in effect an information-age Berlin Wall.

This is not the way to build trust with other governments. The wise thing to do would have been to wait until all the evidence was in before deciding who was guilty. It’s also interesting to know that this vocational school is operated by a company with close ties to Baidu, the dominant search engine in China and Google’s competitor.

______________

Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

Subscribe to “iLook China”!
Sign up for an E-mail Subscription at the top of this page, or click on the “Following” tab in the WordPress toolbar at the top of the screen.

About iLook China