World renowned martial arts master and Asian film sensation JET LI (Gabe/Yulaw) burst into Hollywood with his first English-language film appearance in the 1998 megahit franchise film "Lethal Weapon 4." After completing over 20 films in Hong Kong and China, Li portrayed the villainous Asian crime lord who goes head to head with Mel Gibson, Danny Glover, Rene Russo and Chris Rock in the Richard Donner film.
Last year, Li garnered rave reviews for his performance in the Warner Bros. box office success "Romeo Must Die." In this modern day "Romeo and Juliet," Li plays Romeo to recording artist Aaliyah Haughton's Juliet. Produced by Joel Silver, the film blended hip hop with kung fu and created a new type of action picture.
Most recently, Li starred in the 20th Century Fox film "Kiss of the Dragon," for which he also served as a producer. He portrayed a foreigner who goes to Paris on assignment and becomes involved in a deadly conspiracy. The film co-stars Bridget Fonda
and Tcheky Karyo.
On the horizon is the Warner Bros. film "First Emperor" in which Li will star and co produce with Joel Silver. Based on an idea by Li, the film will combine the suspense, action and thriller elements portrayed in films such as the "Indiana Jones" trilogy and "The Mummy." In addition, Li has teamed with Mel Gibson's Icon Productions to produce a martial arts television series for TBS entitled "Invincible." Featuring the ancient martial art of
Wushu, American audiences can expect spectacularly choreographed action sequences in the distinctive Hong Kong filmmaking style.
Born in Beijing, Li began studying the art of Wushu (the Chinese generic term for martial arts) and was enrolled in the Beijing Amateur Sports School at the age of eight. After three years of extensive training, Li won his first national championship for the Beijing Wushu Team. As part of a world tour in 1974, he had the distinction of performing a two- man fight for President Nixon on the White House lawn. For the next four years, Li remained the All-Around National Wushu Champion of China.
Shortly after retiring from the sport at the age of 17, he was offered many starring roles and subsequently began a film career with director Chang Hsin Yen's "Shaolin Temple." Upon its release, Li was propelled into instant movie stardom. The film was an enormous success that spawned two sequels. This led to Li completing 25 successful Asian films before coming to America.
Li is currently in production in China on the film "Hero" and will star in Miramax's "Monk in N.Y.," to film next year.
Li currently resides in Los Angeles with his wife and daughter.
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