Bruce Lee was a Hong Kong and American martial artist, martial arts instructor, actor, director, screenwriter, producer, and philosopher.
Lee was born in San Francisco, but he grew up in Hong Kong. He was introduced to the entertainment industry at an early age, as his father was an opera singer and part-time actor.
The younger Lee began appearing in films as a child and was frequently cast as a juvenile delinquent or street urchin.
As a teenager, he took up with local gangs and began learning kung fu to better defend himself. At that time he also started dance lessons, which further refined his footwork and balance; in 1958 Lee won the Hong Kong cha-cha championship.
After Lee’s death, his films gained a large cult following. Lee himself became one of the biggest pop culture icons of the 20th century, and he is often credited with changing the way Asians were presented in American films. A slightly fictionalized biopic, Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story, appeared in 1993. His son, Brandon, followed Lee into acting, and he died after being shot with a misloaded prop gun while filming The Crow (1994).