The transcript below is from the video “The Truth About Bruce Lee And Chuck Norris’ Relationship” by  Grunge.

Grunge (YouTube Channel started in 2016, makes videos that contains cool facts and fun tidbits on history, science, entertainment, and plenty more): 

Bruce Lee and Chuck Norris are both legendary martial arts icons, but their lives could hardly have been more different. Lee’s original name was Lee Jun Fan, and he was born in California to an immigrant family from Hong Kong in 1940. He spent his entire life in the limelight as a child actor, dancer, poet, and eventually, a martial artist, teacher and movie star of considerable renown. There’s no telling how high his star would have risen, had he not died of a mysterious, possibly prescription painkiller-induced brain edema at the age of 32.

Grunge (YouTube Channel started in 2016, makes videos that contains cool facts and fun tidbits on history, science, entertainment, and plenty more): 

Norris was also born in 1940 and became a famous martial artist, but that’s where the similarities end. He was a shy kid and a mediocre student who married his high school sweetheart before discovering martial arts while serving in Korea with the U.S. Air Force. In the 1960s, he became a Karate instructor and an owner of over 30 Karate schools, while also crafting a career as one of the greatest fighters in martial arts, and a multiple-time Karate champion.

Grunge (YouTube Channel started in 2016, makes videos that contains cool facts and fun tidbits on history, science, entertainment, and plenty more): 

Now, as many martial arts movie fans know, the two legends have faced each other on-screen, and their epic Colosseum fight in The Way of the Dragon is arguably one of the genre’s greatest throwdowns. Here’s the question, though, was that their only interaction? Or is there more to their relationship? Did their status as high-profile martial artists make them mortal enemies or staunch allies? Or were they just two kickass ships in the night? Although Lee’s sad fate means it’s impossible to hear his side of the relationship, Norris is thankfully still around to shed some light on the matter.

Grunge (YouTube Channel started in 2016, makes videos that contains cool facts and fun tidbits on history, science, entertainment, and plenty more): 

According to the man himself, Chuck Norris was actually on great terms with Bruce Lee. In fact, he and Lee not only knew each other, but often hung out together and even sparred on occasion. In his WorldNetDaily column, Norris has described Lee as extremely “charismatic and friendly” both in person and on the silver screen. But while it’s heartwarming to know that the Jeet Kune Do innovator and the karate master were actually great buddies in real life, there’s one question on everyone’s lips, here: What would have happened if the two had faced each other in a real-life competition? Sadly, Norris refused to name a winner, tactfully dodging the question with a Lee-style philosophy nugget he calls a Bruceism:

“Showing off is the fool’s idea of glory.”

Grunge (YouTube Channel started in 2016, makes videos that contains cool facts and fun tidbits on history, science, entertainment, and plenty more): 

Still, it appears that Bruce Lee and Chuck Norris genuinely enjoyed spending time with each other, and they clearly had plenty of respect for each other’s skills and philosophy. The men met at the 1967 All American Karate Open Championships at Madison Square Garden, where Lee gave a demonstration of his techniques and Norris took home the championship. The two men started talking, and soon ended up taking part in a long discussion about their respective fighting philosophies.

Grunge (YouTube Channel started in 2016, makes videos that contains cool facts and fun tidbits on history, science, entertainment, and plenty more): 

After that, Lee and Norris became good friends. For the next two years, they met up in Los Angeles to train in Lee’s backyard, a routine that only ended when Lee relocated to Hong Kong to quite literally kick-start his movie career. And hey, speaking of kicks: everyone knows Norris is the master of swooping high kicks and roundhouses, but it was actually he who convinced Lee to see their usefulness. Norris explains:

“Bruce had different philosophies at that time than I did. He said, ‘I believe in only kicking below the waist. I believe you shouldn’t go any higher than the waist.'”

Grunge (YouTube Channel started in 2016, makes videos that contains cool facts and fun tidbits on history, science, entertainment, and plenty more): 

Norris, in turn, argued that you should absolutely kick your opponent wherever they’re dumb enough to allow you to, and backed up his argument by showcasing a range of high kicks. This impressed Lee greatly, and he soon began to incorporate Norris’ higher kick techniques into his arsenal.

Grunge (YouTube Channel started in 2016, makes videos that contains cool facts and fun tidbits on history, science, entertainment, and plenty more): 

Now, to be fair, Lee had already performed his fair share of onscreen high kicks at that point, so it’s not like Norris taught him an entirely new skill out of the blue. Still, Lee certainly seems to have remembered his old sparring partner fondly, because when he was looking for a hardcore onscreen opponent a few years later, he picked up the phone and called his old friend Chuck, about a new movie called The Way of The Dragon. The rest, as they say, is history.




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