Observations: The joints may be creaky, but Chan still comes out fighting


Jackie Chan would like us to know one thing: reports out of Cannes about his imminent retirement from action films were not just premature, they were wrong. “The reporters misunderstood. I will continue to do action, but less dangerous stunts. I'm not retiring.”

True to his word, the actor recently announced that he will appear in an English-language action-comedy and before that, the spritely 58-year-old has a globe-trotting action vehicle, Chinese Zodiac, lined up for release.

He looks like the Jackie of old in the trailer, but insists that his body is now an “antique”, in need of care. “When you jump, ouch! The knees, ankles, they hurt.”

He used to be able to do 40 shots a day; now he has to rest after three or four. Chinese Zodiac took a year to shoot.

As for the future, he feels he has more to offer. He'd like American filmmakers to cast him for his acting chops – he has done serious drama in Asia – rather than his karate ones. “I met every studio, every director, and they said, 'Look, there's a stunt, it's very good. You are a policeman from Hong Kong.' No, please. Come on! I want everybody to know I'm an actor. I can do so many things, just like Robert De Niro.”