Dojo Tribute #3: Chi Kuan Chun

Dojo Tribute# 3: Chi Kuan Chun

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One of the staples of Chang Che directed Shaolin-themed films(the Shaolin Cycle) was Chi Kuan Chun. Chi was often paired with the charismatic Alexander Fu Sheng to create cinematic Kung fu magic. While many fans and critics laude over Fu Sheng(with good reason), I think Chi Kuan Chun has been overlooked.
Chi Sifu brought many great attributes to the table. He was (and is) a Hung Gar exponent which fit right in with martial arts director and Hung Gar master Lau Kar Leung’s choreography. Also, Chi Sifu’s crisp execution of Hung Gar forms and techniques brought an authentic light to the Shaolin based characters he portrayed(see Chang Che’s Shaolin Temple). Chi Sifu was (and is) very fit and he brought a very masculine energy to his movies. Additionally, he played the serious straight man to Fu Sheng’s playful, silly character in most cases.
Another great thing about Chi Kuan Chun was his longevity in the competitive and often fickle Kung fu film industry. After his tenure at Shaw Brothers was over,Chi Sifu starred in many independent Kung fu films and also ran his own film company Champion Films. Some of his best work comes from this time period; we get to see more of his range of acting skills and Kung fu due to different choreographic styles, action directors, and film directors. Today Chi Sifu operates his Hung Gar kwoon and occasionally appears in films(the latest being The Grandmaster). Here at the Dojo, we want to thank Chi Sifu for all of his years of entertaining us and demonstrating his impeccable Hung Gar Kuen!

Thank you, Chi Sifu!

Selected Filmography
Shaolin Disciples (1974)
Men from the Monastery (1974)
Shaolin Martial Arts (1974)
Shaolin Temple (1976)
Boxer Rebellion
Marco Polo (1975)
Ways of Kung Fu
Showdown at Cotton Mill
Eagle’s Claw
Iron Neck Li
(Not an exhaustive list)- see as many Chi Kuan Chun films as you can find!!!

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