november 18, 1999
Dear Mr. Li,
We all know how fortunate you are to have been able to break into the movie business, but what has happened to your teammates on the Beijing Wushu Team? Have they been lucky enough to showcase their skills on screen, or are they devoted to spreading the art of wushu around the world by teaching their skills?
Of the millions of people who practice wushu in China, not all have the chance to become the national champion. The same is true in the movie industry. Most of my teammates also made kung-fu movies and television series. Everybody had the chance to get started in this business. Achieving success in the industry, though, depends on one's luck. It's also about unrelenting hard work and other kinds of special factors.
About a third of my former teammates are currently engaged in wushu instruction all over the world: America, Australia, Japan. Some stayed in China to teach wushu. Others pursued different paths and are working in professions completely unrelated to wushu. Just like with any cohort of students who study the same subject, not all of them will end up doing the type of work that they trained for. Some decide to follow different careers. Most will have rather ordinary and unacclaimed positions; a few may become very famous.