Action star Donnie Yen knows what his fans want to see – and that’s exactly what they should get: “Ip Man 5” and “Flash Point 2” have just been announced in Cannes.
Action star Donnie Yen has just been able to reach and inspire an audience that otherwise has little contact with the martial arts legend from Hong Kong with his appearance in “John Wick: Chapter 4” alongside Keanu Reeves alongside his many fans. The supposed finale of the “John Wick” main series set a new franchise record with $426 million in worldwide revenue (via Box Office Mojo). Quite a few fans were particularly taken with Donnie Yen’s new character, Caine, who made for some truly breathless moments.
With all these new fans, but especially with his loyal following, what the production company Mandarin Films presented in Cannes should make you gasp. Nothing less than sequels to two of his most important and successful action brands were announced via teaser posters: “Ip Man 5” and “Flash Point 2”.
– Warning: Spoilers for “Ip Man 4: The Finale” follow –
If the name Donnie Yen is mentioned, quite a few mention Ip Man (alternatively spelled Yip Man) in the same breath. Although Yen’s probably best-known film series about the life and work of the Wing Chun grandmaster is not the only film adaptation, the 59-year-old martial arts expert is now synonymous with Ip Man, and not just on the screen. And that despite the fact that there are quite a few film adaptations, including “The Grandmaster” by influential filmmaker Wong Kar-Wai and starring Hong Kong legend Tony Leung (“Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings”).
Even if the “Ip Man” series differs greatly from reality in some points, Donnie Yen not only hit the grand master well in terms of character – he lost almost 15 kilos for the first film in 2007, to make the gaunt martial artist look good too to get closer. During the shooting, the 1.73 meter tall actor weighed just over 50 kilos (via Internet Archive).
With all the joy at seeing Yen’s Ip Man again, there is some surprise: After all, “Ip Man 4: The Finale”, which you can stream via Amazon, ended with the grandmaster dying of cancer in December 1972. Many companions proved him Last respects at his funeral, including his student Bruce Lee, who would become a legend himself.
Since there is currently no further information about the plot, one can only assume that “Ip Man 5” could be classified somewhere between “Ip Man 3” and “Ip Man 4″. The period between 1970 and 1972 also had potential. During this time, Bruce Lee returned to Hong Kong with his son Brandon for a visit and was surprised by an unexpected popularity among the population, who enjoyed his appearances in the US series “The Green Hornet” loved. Bruce Lee was unable to train at the time due to a back injury. On the eve of his big break with Bruce Lee: The Death Fist of Cheng Li, Ip Man 5 may fictionally explore his master’s help in his recovery – and Ip Man’s quest to capture everything he knows on camera.
Ip Man was a man who despised violence and considered martial arts more an art than a fight.
Flash Point: Resurgence”: Donnie Yen in what is probably his toughest and coolest role
While Donnie Yen’s “Ip Man” films have showcased his acting side alongside his gifted action star and martial arts skills, 2007’s “Flash Point” is a whole different caliber. In this hard-hitting action-packer, Yen stars as the culmination of his career as the super-cool and ruthless detective Yun Ma, who takes on three criminal brothers feared for their brutal and ruthless methods.
The action and especially the full-contact scenes with mixed martial arts elements that were groundbreaking at the time in “Flash Point” still cause open mouths and enthusiasm even among colleagues like Scott Adkins. Unmatched! Fans have always wanted a sequel. Now, after 16 years, that dream is finally coming true with Flash Point: Resurgence.
It is unclear in both productions who is responsible for the screenplay and who is directing. But since both films are announced as Donnie Yen films on the teaser posters, one can assume that he could not only take on the leading roles and choreograph the martial arts scenes, but possibly also direct each one. (New) fans can look forward to what information there will be in the near future.