Entertainment
Historic Unedited Photos They Don’t Want You To See
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760a631d0dea2ae92cb6e9f7b157b927
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Entertainment
Historic Unedited Photos They Don’t Want You To See
Publication: Historical History.
Posted by
760a631d0dea2ae92cb6e9f7b157b927
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Bruce Lee and Chuck Norris

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Where:
Unknown
When:
1960s
Summary:
Martial artists Bruce Lee and Chuck Norris. The two met in 1965 and became fast friends, and eventually worked together in the 1973 movie Enter the Dragon.

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Bruce Lee and Chuck Norris



  Where:
Unknown

  When:
1960s

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Very few people have achieved the level of coolness in the eyes of the general public than Chuck Norris and Bruce Lee. Both were born in 1940, but had very different paths that would eventually cross.

Norris joined the Air Force out of high school, and began training in martial arts while he was there. After four years, Norris was discharged and kept his passion for martial arts going, participating in competitions that he was winning left and right. In 1968, he was aiming for the world championship for Professional Middleweight Karate where he caught the eye of Bruce Lee.

As for Lee, he was born in the United States, but grew up in Hong Kong. He had been training in martial arts for all of his life, and moved back to the United States when he was 18 years old. Lee’s background in martial arts made him a must-see talent, which allowed him to branch out into entertainment.

When he met Norris, Lee had been portraying Kato on the television series “The Green Hornet”. After the two developed a friendship, they started training together. According to Norris himself, they were exchanging philosophies in martial arts and took a cab to Lee’s hotel. “We both step out into the hallway – it was about (midnight) by now – the next thing I know, I’ve got my jacket off and we are working out in the hallway.”

Norris added that “I swear to you that the next time I looked at my watch it was seven o’clock the next morning. I looked at my watch again, I could not believe it. I had a flight in two hours back to Los Angeles and Bruce said that when we got back we should work out together, which we did for three years.” Then Lee moved back to Hong Kong to become an even bigger movie star. Norris would also get into acting around this time, with his big break coming in 1972.

That’s when the photo here with Norris and Lee was taken, as the two appeared in the film “The Way of the Dragon” (known in the United States as “Return of the Dragon”) that released on December 30. The martial arts duo looked like it would be headed for superstardom on a global basis until tragedy struck just five months after “The Way of the Dragon” was released.

Lee had been filming dialogue for his next film in Hong Kong when he suddenly collapsed. Doctors found that Lee had suffered from a cerebral edema, though his life was saved for the time being. Just two months later, Lee was at the home of actress Betty Ting Pei when he started to suffer from headaches once again.

He then took a nap to rest and also had an aspirin, but a couple hours later he wasn’t able to be woken up. Doctors were immediately brought in to try and revive Lee, but it was too late. He was found to have a swollen brain from a mixture of medication and cerebral edema, claiming his life at just 32 years old.

At his funeral on July 25, 1973, Lee had several well-known pallbearers that included the likes of actors Steve McQueen, George Lazenby and, of course, Chuck Norris. Norris opened up about his friend’s death nearly two years after it happened, saying that Lee had suffered from a back injury that caused him to rely on medication.

“One day he had a headache,” Norris said. “So (Betty Ting Pei) gave him some antibiotics. These mixed with the medication he was on from the hospital and caused his brain to swell. That’s what really killed Bruce Lee.”

When asked about Bruce Lee, Norris still remembers his old friend quite fondly. He’s also not shy about saying that Lee would have beaten him in a real fight. “The Way of the Dragon” co-star Jon T. Benn said that “When I was having dinner with Chuck I did ask him ‘If you and Bruce would be in a real fight to death, who would win?’ And he said without thinking, ‘Bruce of course. Nobody can beat him.’”

Even after his friend had passed, the show still had to go on for Norris. He would appear in several films throughout the rest of the 1970s, and became an even bigger name in the 1980s. Films such as “An Eye for an Eye”, “Silent Rage” and “Lone Wolf McQuade” helped to put Norris into stardom, as he appeared in many different action films during the 1980s.

Perhaps the biggest hit that Norris has had during his career came in 1993 with “Walker, Texas Ranger”. The action show ran for eight years and made huge waves in syndication with more than 200 episodes. With many successful television shows, movies, books, martial arts programs, and even internet memes, things have been going very well for the 78 year old who still looks like he could take on just about anybody in a fight.

We’re left to wonder “what if” when it comes to Bruce Lee’s eventual career after “The Way of the Dragon”, but at least we’re left with some fond memories. This photo shows two of the baddest dudes in martial arts history sharing a moment and capturing their friendship for all of us to enjoy more than 40 years after it happened.

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