Happy Birthday Jackie Chan: Timeline of Iconic Star’s Career

by Keeli Parkey

Happy birthday, Jackie Chan! The famous martial arts action star is celebrating his 67th birthday today (Wednesday, April 7)! In honor of his birthday, let’s take a look back at the actor’s life and career.

Chan was born in Hong Kong. His parents were poor, but they loved their energetic son very much. The young Jackie Chan was so energetic in fact that his parents gave him the nickname “Pao-pao.” This translated to “cannonball.”

As a youngster, Jackie Chan studied at the China Drama Academy. He was there for a decade. During his time there he was very adept at acrobatics and, of course, martial arts.

The future worldwide star moved to Canberra, Australia, to live with his parents during 1976. While there he had jobs in construction and got to know a coworker named Jack. He became close so close to Jack that Chan came to be known as “Little Jack.” Eventually, the actor changed this to “Jackie,” which is the name he would become famous as.

During the 1960s and into the 1970s, Jackie Chan had some small roles in films and began working his way toward stardom. A major step forward in his career came with the movie “Snake in the Eagle’s Shadow.” He carried that success forward with “Drunken Master,” which also came out in 1978.

It was in 1980 that Jackie Chan first appeared in a Hollywood film. That film was “The Big Brawl.” Interestingly, Chan also played a part in “The Cannonball Run” during 1981. However, he was not yet able to become famous in the Hollywood market. So, according to the article, he returned to work in Hong Kong.

Success in Hollywood Comes for Chan During 1990s

After years of success in the Hong Kong film industry, Jackie Chan finally had a breakthrough role in a Hollywood film during 1995. That movie was “Rumble in the Bronx.” The biggest success of his career at the time came in 1998. The film was “Rush Hour” and it starred Chan alongside Chris Tucker. It lifted Jackie Chan to a level of fame he had yet to experience.

“Rush Hour” was successful enough to lead to a sequel. Chan also had success with the film “Shanghai Noon” and its sequel in Hollywood. He also starred in “The Tuxedo” in 2002, “The Medallion” in 2003, and “Around the World in 80 Days” in 2004.

He would later lend his voice to a role in “Kung Fu Panda” in 2008. And he starred in the remake of “The Karate Kid” during 2010.

The following year, Jackie Chan acted in the 100th film of his career. This includes both Hollywood films and the films he has made in Hong Kong, according to the article.

Since that time, Chan has continued to make movies; however, he has started to limit the number of stunts he performs in order to better take care of himself. He is set to star in the movie “Project X-Traction” in 2021, according to the article.

Jackie Chan Not Only Celebrity Born on April 7

Jackie Chan isn’t the only beloved actor who was born on April 7. Also born on this day was the legendary James Garner.

Fans will remember Garner for his role as Bret Maverick in the beloved Western television series “Maverick.” He is also known for his roles in “The Rockford Files” on television and in such films as “The Great Escape,” “Support Your Local Sheriff!” and “Murphy’s Romance” just to name a few.