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Bruce Lee Vs Kareem Abdul Jabbar in Game of Death


The Game of Death

Game of Death was the film Bruce Lee had planned to be the demonstration piece of his martial art Jeet Kune Do. Ninety plus minutes of footage was shot before his death, some of which was later misplaced. While in the middle of filming Game of Death, Bruce Lee was given the offer to star in Enter the Dragon. The first kung fu film to be produced by a Hollywood studio, and with a budget unprecedented for the genre, it was an offer Lee couldn't refuse. Unfortunately, Lee died of cerebral edema before the film's release. At the time of his death, he had already made plans to resume the filming of Game of Death.

After Lee's death, Enter the Dragon director Robert Clouse was enlisted to direct additional scenes featuring a stand-in which, when pieced together with the original footage as well as other footage from earlier in Bruce Lee's career, would form a new film (also entitled Game of Death) which was released in 1978, five years after his death, by Columbia Pictures.


The revised version of the film uses only 11 minutes and 7 seconds of the footage from the original Game of Death, and for the vast majority of the film, the role of Billy Lo was shared by Yuen Biao and taekwondo master Tai Chung Kim. The plot of the film allowed Kim and Yuen to spend much of the film in disguises, usually involving false beards and large, dark sunglasses, that obscured the fact that they bore little resemblance to Lee. Many scenes, including fight scenes, also included brief close-up bits of stock footage of the real Bruce Lee from his pre-Enter the Dragon films, often only lasting a second or two. These clips are easily recognizable due to the difference in film quality between the old and new footage. One especially egregious trick, often pointed out by critics of the film, involved a shot of Kim looking at himself in the mirror, with an obvious cardboard cut-out of Lee's face pasted onto the mirror's surface.

Thanks to Wikipedia for the information.

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