LOS ANGELES: Hong Kong film star Jackie Chan became the first Chinese actor on Thursday to have his hands and feet cast in wet cement at Hollywood’s famed Chinese Theatre, alongside generations of Tinseltown icons.
He was joined by American actor Chris Tucker, his co-star from the “Rush Hour” movies, in the ceremony in the courtyard of the TCL Chinese Theatre, as hundreds of fans screamed from across Hollywood Boulevard.
Chan, who has starred in over 100 films and directed 20, recalled first coming to the then Grauman’s Chinese Theatre — it changed its name this year for sponsor Chinese company TCL — two decades ago, invited by film action hero Sylvester Stallone.
“Twenty years, ago, 1993 … I was not on the red carpet, (I was) on the side, and I saw there are so many stars doing interviews. I had nothing to do. I was standing there looking around to see the handprints.
“I thought to myself, when will I have my own things? During all those years my dream (grew),” he said, before thanking his co-stars, TCL, and — to cheers from the crowd — “the fans around the world, you make my dream come true.”
The honour is considered even more exclusive than that of being given a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, the stretch of sidewalk along Hollywood Boulevard lined with star-shaped plaques to entertainment greats.
Chinese tourist Haoyahh Wei, looking on, said: “He always makes the greatest movies in the world, and always has creative ideas to put in his new movies .. always has something fun to give to his fans.
“We all love him. He is a very kind person, he always helps others,” he added.
LA resident Ivette DeLatorres added: “He’s one of the very few actors that actually does his own stunts. I mean he’s willing to get on set, break his leg, get a cast on and the very next day show up on set and keep on going.
“That’s amazing,” she added.
Tucker recalled when he did the first “Rush Hour” film with Chan in 1998. “We traveled around the world… from Asia to Australia to Europe and immediately he helped me get known internationally.
“It was just an honor to be in a movie with him. That was a comedian’s dream. He’s been a mentor, a big brother. He’s the best guy in the whole wide world,” he added.
Chan was born in Hong Kong and began his international movie career in the early 1970s, going on to fame with hits including “Dragons Forever” (1988), “The Legend of Drunk Master (1994) and “Little Big Soldier” (2010).
The 59-year-old — who stuck his face into the Tinseltown cement, as well as his hands and besocked feet — also worked as a stunt coordinator for martial arts legend Bruce Lee.
The courtyard of the TCL Chinese Theatre is paved with the hand- and foot prints of decades of Hollywood greats, from Humphrey Bogart and Bette Davis to Jane Fonda and Brad Pitt.
Chan said that, in addition to being the first Chinese actor honoured, he was actually the first to have his handprints done twice.
“Twelve years ago I did the handprint, but somebody stole it,” he said.
“Then that’s the second time. I really want to thank you.”