Donnie Yen is coming off of a major start to 2017 having finally gotten his moment to shine in a few Hollywood pictures with Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and xXx: The Return Of Xander Cage. The action star recently wrapped the forthcoming crime pic, Chasing The Dragon and is also set to reprise his acclaimed role in a fourth Ip Man installment for director Wilson Yip.
Add another to the list of cool stuff you will learn today with word via Deadline
that Yen will star in a live-action adaptation of the hit Square Enix game, Sleeping Dogs
with Fast And Furious
saga producer Neal Moritz of Original Film producing. The game, which took off in 2012 followed by a remastered version in 2014, centered on an undercover cop transferred to Hong Kong to infiltrate the Triads.
Original Film is producing with DJ2 Entertainment with Moritz, Dmitri Johnson and Dan Jevons producing and Toby Ascher and Stephan Bugaj executive producing and a director still to be named. The film marks the latest milestone move for Yen whose crossover career into Western territory since hitting big in Asia in the early 80’s with Yuen Woo-Ping as his mentor, had been slow to pass in the 90’s with small roles in Highlander: Endgame, Blade 2 and Shanghai Knights – all of which either saw his character’s demise or services as choreographer in various capacities along with numerous international productions, including German TV series, Der Puma, and The Princess Blade.
His most recent success with Yip in the 2004 film, S.P.L.
, spawned a revival of gritty, glorious Hong Kong style action which later echoed in Flash Point
and Asian IP adaptation Dragon Tiger Gate
, along with other titles apart from the highly successful Ip Man franchise – the most recent installment being last year’s Ip Man 3
. Rogue One, out on DVD, Blu-Ray and Digital this Spring
, earned over a billion dollars worldwide while xXx: The Return Of Xander Cage
which joins Yen with an ensemble cast led by Vin Diesel has grossed well over $331 million dollars globally and became a Chinese new year hit.
Yen, born in China and raised in Massachusetts in the states, has been the talk of many an action fan for years now having showcased his craft for years and was long hoped to have his own stake in a Hollywood vehicle. It’s been nearly 20 years with that discussion since sampling his skillset greatly in Highlander: Endgame and it’s disappointing that the industry chose not to take a chance on him sooner. Thankfully, we have this opportunity for the beloved action star favorite and father of two, still fast and moving furiously on screen, and with any luck, his career ascension will hopefully advance his earlier-hyped plans of a Flash Point sequel.
Chasing The Dragon which joins Yen with actor Andy Lau has since been acquired by Well Go USA.
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Native New Yorker. Lover of all things pizza, chocolate, pets, and good friends. Karaoke hero. Left of center. Survivor. Fond supporter of cult, obscure and independent cinema - especially fond of Asian movies and global action cinema. Author of the bi-weekly Hit List. Founder and editor of Film Combat Syndicate. Still, very much, only human.
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