Relatives of martial arts master Huo Yuanjia have filed a lawsuit to remove Jet Li‘s new film "Fearless" from theaters in Asia, claiming the biopic paints an untrue and unflattering picture of the legendary fighter.
According to China’s Xinhua News Agency (via the A.P.), family members of the turn-of-the-century figure are suing the producers and distributors of "Huo Yuan Jia" (to be released stateside as "Fearless") and have added star Jet Li into the suit for added measure, just for being a part of the film.
Speaking on behalf of the family, Huo Yuanjia’s grandson, Huo Shoujin, claims that the film "contains numerous fabrications about his grandfather’s life and besmirches his reputation."
"Huo Yuan Jia" has been in theatrical release in Hong Kong, Singapore and Taiwan since January, and is set to hit the U.S. in August before expanding to the U.K. and Europe in September. The lawsuit seeks to pull the film from its current run in Asia, and prevent it from opening as planned worldwide. The suit also demands a public apology from the filmmakers.
The story follows the life of Huo Yuanjia (1868-1910) as he evolves from a skilled fighter to a spiritual martial arts guru and represents his country in an international tournament, becoming a symbol of Chinese pride.
"Fearless" is directed by Ronny Yu and stars Jet Li, Collin Chou, Nathan "Megaman" Jones, and almost co-starred Michelle Yeoh (scenes deleted); the pic is scheduled for release in the U.S. August 4, 2006.