It is well known that Jackie Chan was already in front of the camera at the age of eight and played a small role in the film “The 7 Tyrants Of Jiangnan” (1963), also known as “Big And Little Wong Tin Bar”. During his education at the China Drama Academy under Yu Jim-Yuen, he and his classmates were often loaned out to film studios to generate additional income for the school’s coffers.
When Jackie Chan and his father arrived at Master Yu Jim-Yuen’s school in Hong Kong for the first time in 1961, he could hardly believe his eyes. Children his age were allowed to have fun all day long – the bully Jackie Chan wanted that too. By contract, the then 7-year-old was placed in the care of Master Yu Jim-Yuen for ten years. A mistake?
Discovery: Jackie Chan discovered in “The Golden Hairpin” from 1963 thanks to a comparison of film recordings?
While researching my new book “The New German Jackie Chan Film Guide” I came across a film some time ago in which a young Jackie Chan may be seen. In the little-known and even less advertised four-part film “The Golden Hairpin” from 1963/1964, several child actors were recruited – and one of them resembles the now world-famous star from Hong Kong.
It may sound unlikely, but it’s true: A young Jackie Chan is hiding in an episode of the hit 1960s TV series “I Spy” starring Robert Culp and Bill Cosby. The fact that the then 11-year-old Jackie Chan and some of his friends appeared in a US TV series should be considered a great coincidence – or was it good research by the producers?