Chang Cheh, the inventor of the first Kungfu Films in Hong Kong and the first modern kungfu filmmaker in China, died on Friday morning from lung failure at the age of 79.
Before Chang Cheh's films, mainland directors in the early 1900s also made kungfu films. But these films were neither interesting nor exciting.
About 50 years ago Shaw Brothers Co. Ltd., Hong Kong's biggest film studio at that time, invited Chang Cheh to introduce in a new style of kungfu films.
Chang invented the breathing-taking martial arts comedy, also introducing noble Shaolin Monk fighting to the screen.
He has won many Hong Kong film awards, the latest was the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 21st HKFA(Hong Kong Film Awards) this year.
Chang was the mentor of kungfu film superstar Bruce Lee and action director John Woo. Chang helped John Woo a lot in the directing of Woo's hit Hollywood films, Face/Off and Mission Impossible 2.
(eastday.com June 24, 2002)