On July 20, 1973, the world mourned the loss of Bruce Lee, the Chinese-American martial artist renowned for his iconic roles as Kato in the “Batman” and “Green Hornet” TV series, as well as his stellar performances in Hollywood blockbusters like “Enter the Dragon” and “Fists of Fury.” At the tender age of 32, Lee’s passing was attributed to brain swelling.

Five decades later, Bruce Lee’s profound legacy transcends the silver screen, leaving an indelible mark on the world. As a global sensation, his meteoric rise altered the course of martial arts cinema, playing a pivotal role in dismantling racist stereotypes that had long targeted Asian-American men in the United States.

On Thursday, fans from Hong Kong and across the globe assembled at the Bruce Lee statue to honour the late kung fu legend on the solemn occasion of the 50th anniversary of his untimely death.

In the presence of Hong Kong’s majestic Victoria Harbour, fans stood before the life-size bronze statue of Bruce Lee, capturing the moment with photographs, bowing in reverence, and tenderly placing flowers as a heartfelt tribute.

Amidst the gathering, some enthusiasts demonstrated the iconic moves of Bruce Lee’s renowned kung fu style, “Jeet Kune Do,” while skilfully wielding “nunchucks” – the famous double truncheon weapon popularised by Lee in his unforgettable films.

Among those who journeyed to Hong Kong to commemorate the anniversary, attendees hailed from various parts of the world, including mainland China, Asia, and Europe.

“I have admired Bruce Lee since I was very young,” shared Bruce Shin, who hails from South Korea. With a brush cut and donning large framed sunglasses, he lovingly emulated Lee’s iconic style.

“His enigmatic physique and presence always intrigued me. I aspired to be like him and dedicated 50 years to weight training,” Shin added passionately, as he demonstrated his admiration with high-pitched yelps and unleashed rapid-fire punches in homage to Bruce Lee’s legendary martial prowess.

Bruce Lee’s indelible impact on martial arts and popular culture continues to ignite the passion of countless fans worldwide. However, in the former British colony, some view his legacy as a relic of the past, sparking diverse perspectives on his enduring influence.

The Wing Chun style of Kung Fu, which Bruce Lee learned from his former grandmaster Ip Man, is still taught in several schools. However, in the bustling, skyscraper-laden metropolis, attracting new disciples to this traditional martial art has posed challenges.

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