The Independent's journalism is supported by our readers. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn commission.

Bruce Lee’s daughter criticises Quentin Tarantino for depicting her father as ‘arrogant a**hole’ in new film

‘It was really uncomfortable to hear people laugh at my father’

Jacob Stolworthy
Tuesday 30 July 2019 09:53 BST
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood trailer

The daughter of Bruce Lee has criticised Quentin Tarantino’s depiction of her father in new film Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.

Shannon Lee said she was “disheartened” to see the director write the legendary actor as “an arrogant a**hole who was full of hot air”.

As seen in the film’s trailer, Lee challenges Brad Pitt’s stuntman character Cliff Booth to an on-set fight after Booth laughs at his brags that his hands are considered “lethal weapons”.

Shannon Lee argued that, rather than be arrogant on Hollywood sets, her father – as an Asian-American in the late 1960s – would have had to work far harder than Booth.

“I can understand all the reasoning behind what is portrayed in the movie,” Yahoo reports Lee as saying. “I understand that the two characters are antiheroes and this is sort of like a rage fantasy of what would happen… and they’re portraying a period of time that clearly had a lot of racism and exclusion.”

Lee added: “I understand they want to make the Brad Pitt character this super bad-ass who could beat up Bruce Lee. But they didn’t need to treat him in the way that white Hollywood did when he was alive.”

She called it a shame that he wasn’t depicted as “...someone who had to fight triple as hard as any of those people did to accomplish what was naturally given to so many others” and described her experience watching the film as “uncomfortable” as she had to listen to people “laugh at my father”.

She praised the acting talents of Mike Moh, but criticised tarantino’s decision to direct him as a “caricature” and also questioned why other white Hollywood figures – including Steve McQueen (Damian Lewis) – weren’t given the same treatment.

Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is released in the UK on 14 August

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in