For any hard-core fan of Hong Kong Cinema, this was absolute dream five years in the making as Donnie Yen took on Hong Kong Cinema legend Sammo Hung in a thrilling fight in the 2005 action film Sha Po Lang.
When designing the bout against Sammo Hung in the films finale, Yen opted to integrate his love for mixed martial arts and worked meticulously to capture its realism on screen while at the same time answering his own questions about his own martial arts journey.
“How do you bring something that is so real and dramatize it, yet remain realistic on film? That was the most difficult task at the time. How do you make it more cinematic? At the same time, you don’t want to lose the sudden impact when you actually watch a fight, if I’m the audience why would I want to watch some MMA fight on film rather than the actual fight.
As I was doing research the martial artist inside of me found something that I think throughout the years of my martial arts training that all of sudden just clicked. I have studied so many traditional martial art styles; traditional Kung Fu, Wushu, Tae Kwon Do, Boxing, Karate because I was a martial artist before I was a film maker. Then I realized this whole MMA thing it actually brought an answer to all martial art; does it work?”
SPL: Sha Po Lang (Chinese: Released in the United States as Kill Zone) is a 2005 Hong Kong action film written and directed by Wilson Yip, and starring Donnie Yen, Sammo Hung and Simon Yam. The film was released in Hong Kong on 18 November 2005.
Yam portrays a retiring police detective who resorts to the use of questionable methods in order to catch Wong Po (Hung), a ruthless triad boss. [Source: Wiki]