The Young Master

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The Young Master
Hong Kong film poster
MandarinShī Dì Chū Mǎ
CantoneseSi1 Dai2 Ceot1 Ma2
Directed byJackie Chan
Produced byRaymond Chow
Leonard Ho
Written byJackie Chan
Edward Tang
Lau Tin-chi
Tung Lu
StarringJackie Chan
Yuen Biao
Fung Fung
Shih Kien
Music byFrankie Chan
CinematographyChen Ching-chu
Edited byPeter Cheung
Distributed byGolden Harvest
Media Asia Group
Release date
  • 9 February 1980 (1980-02-09)
Running time
106 minutes
CountryHong Kong
Box officeUS$7.9 million (est.)

The Young Master (Chinese: 師弟出馬) is a 1980 Hong Kong martial arts film starring and directed by Jackie Chan, who also writer with Edward Tang, Lau Tin-chi and Tung Lu. The film co-stars Yuen Biao, Fung Fung and Shih Kien. The film was released on 9 February 1980.

The film is notable for being the first that Jackie Chan worked on for Golden Harvest, and despite being his second film as director (his first was The Fearless Hyena), it is often incorrectly regarded as his directorial debut. The film was co-written by Edward Tang, Lau Tin-chi and Tung Lu, and produced by Raymond Chow and Leonard Ho.

Dragon Lord was originally intended to be the sequel to The Young Master, and was to be called Young Master in Love, as confirmed by Jackie Chan in his book.


The school attended by Dragon and his brother, Tiger is entered against a rival school in a Lion Dance competition. The school needs to win the prize money to remain open but their star performer, Tiger, is seemingly injured when he falls from a ladder, leaving his brother, Dragon, to take his place. During the competition, Dragon realizes that his brother feigned his accident in order to take part in the competition for the rival school.

The rival school wins the competition, but the truth emerges about Tiger's betrayal and he is exiled in disgrace. However, Dragon vows to bring back his errant brother so the pair can make amends to their master. Dragon sets off on his mission, but en route is mistaken for a criminal known as The White Fan by local police chief, Sang Kung along with his son and daughter. Meanwhile, Tiger collaborates with his employers (the rival school) by freeing a dangerous criminal known as Kam. However, Tiger is later framed for a bank robbery. To stop his brother from being arrested, Dragon promises to apprehend the escapee, Kam.

The Young Master ends with a furious, brutal fight between Kam and Dragon, in which Dragon sustains substantial damage. At the beginning of the fight, it appears that Kam has the upper hand as he punishes Dragon with blindingly fast punches and kicks. However, after consuming water from an opium pipe given to him by a whimsical old man, Dragon becomes energized and defeats Kam. The Young Master ends with Dragon returning to his hometown, a hero (albeit one in full body cast from the many injuries he sustained).



According to his book I Am Jackie Chan: My Life in Action, Chan nearly suffocated when he injured his throat while filming a stunt scene.[1]


The theme song played over the closing credits, Kung Fu Fighting Man was the first song recorded and performed by Jackie Chan. He has since gone on to release many records, and has performed the theme songs on many of his films.[2]

Much of the incidental music is from stock sources, notably a recording of The Planets by Gustav Holst.


There are two main versions of the film currently available, the 106-minute Hong Kong cut and the 90-minute international cut. A Taiwanese video featuring footage missing from both the Hong Kong and international cuts was also released.

However, even this version is not definitive - the original version of the film that Chan handed over to Golden Harvest was reportedly three hours in length. This had to be re-edited, so over 70 minutes of footage was cut during the first edit.[3]

Box office[edit]

In Hong Kong, the film grossed HK$11,026,283[4] (US$2,215,893),[5] becoming the highest-grossing film of 1980.[6] In South Korea, it was the highest-grossing film of 1980, with 436,631 box office admissions in Seoul City,[7][8] equivalent to an estimated 873,262,000[9] (US$1,438,652).[10] In Japan, it was the 21st highest-grossing film of 1981, earning ¥930 million[11] (US$4.22 million).[12] Combined, the film's total estimated box office gross in East Asia was approximately US$7,874,545 million, equivalent to US$24 million adjusted for inflation.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Jackie Chan. "Jackie's Aches and Pains: It Only Hurts When I'm Not Laughing". Random House. Retrieved 19 December 2012.
  2. ^ "Jackie Chan: Kung Fu Fighter Believes There's More to Him Than Meets the Eye". hkvpradio (Hong Kong Vintage Pop Radio). Retrieved 12 February 2009.
  3. ^ "The Young Master (DVD review)". DVD Times. Retrieved 6 August 2007.
  4. ^ "The Young Master (1980)". Hong Kong Movie DataBase. Retrieved 8 December 2018.
  5. ^ "Official exchange rate (HK$ per US$, period average)". World Bank. 1980. Retrieved 28 November 2018.
  6. ^ "【ジャッキーチェン興行成績】 第8回:香港での興行収入". KungFu Tube (in Japanese). 16 August 2010. Retrieved 8 December 2018.
  7. ^ "【ジャッキーチェン興行成績】 第10回:韓国での興行収入". KungFu Tube (in Japanese). 5 September 2010. Retrieved 7 December 2018.
  8. ^ "영화정보" [Movie Information]. KOFIC (in Korean). Korean Film Council. Retrieved 26 August 2019.
  9. ^ Park, Seung Hyun (2000). A Cultural Interpretation of Korean Cinema, 1988-1997. Indiana University. p. 119. Average Ticket Prices in Korea, 1974-1997 [...] * Source: Korea Cinema Yearbook (1997-1998) * Currency: won [...] Foreign [...] 1980 [...] 2,000
  10. ^ "Official exchange rate (KRW per US$, period average)". World Bank. 1980. Retrieved 7 December 2018.
  11. ^ "【ジャッキーチェン興行成績】 第12回:日本での興行収入". KungFu Tube (in Japanese). Retrieved 21 November 2018.
  12. ^ "Official exchange rate (LCU per US$, period average) - Japan". World Bank. 1981. Retrieved 23 June 2020.

External links[edit]