Jackie Chan is known around the world as one of the best action stars of all time. He’s been in over 150 movies since his career began. In Hollywood, his roles have made him known as an action star who could be relied on to pull off his own brand of slapstick comedy. In recent years, we haven’t seen him in as many American movies. There are many reasons for this, among them that he feels he’s played the same part in American films enough times now. He also has some different priorities on his plate. While the Western world mostly knows him for his acting work, since 2013, Jackie Chan has been heavily involved in politics in Hong Kong, where he was born and calls home. At a recent symposium that was organized by the China Film Association, the actor spoke at length about his admiration for China’s Communist Party and his desire to be a part of it.
In the below video, you can see Jackie Chan summarize many of his political beliefs in under two minutes.
It hasn’t been a secret that the Hong Kong-based actor turned politician is pro-Communist. In Hong Kong, he’s been a major celebrity figure for China’s Communist Party. At this recent event though he spoke more than usual about his feelings, saying plainly, “I want to be a Party member,” during his speech. This event was seen on CCTV footage and the audience met his comments with a loud round of applause. However, the internet is a global audience. Many only know Jackie Chan from his movies. Previously unfamiliar with his political beliefs, many felt shocked. Some people have met his declarations with confusion, especially those who are on the side of the protestors in Hong Kong. Some have felt angered that he would support the mainland over Hong Kong protestors.
Meanwhile, some of the online reaction has been from people in China who are members of the Chinese Communist Party who do not feel the actor is worthy of being a member of the Party. They say that he has moral failings. Examples on social media have included allegations that he cheated on his wife and that his son has used drugs. These actions disqualify him from becoming a Party member. Weibo, a popular Chinese social media app, was quickly filled with people mocking the action star.
While Jackie Chan is growing more outspoken on the issue and coming to speak more strongly with his support, which is gaining more attention, this isn’t new for him. During 2019, when Hong Kong protests were often in the Western news, he was featured a fair amount expressing his support for the Chinese Community Party (CCP). He has continued to call the protests “sad and depressing” and expressed a wish for peace, something that he feels the CCP can provide. He has also continued to express that he feels the Party delivers the things that it promises and does so much faster than he believes would happen otherwise.