Jason Scott Lee

  1. Robin Shou, Mortal Kombat, 1994. At one time, the choices for Johnny Cage and Liu Kang in the $20m debut of the franchise based on the video game were Brandon Lee… and the guy who played his father in Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story, 1992. Also in the mix for the then rare Asian Hollywood hero were Keith Cooke (given Reptile, instead), Dustin Nguyen (a refugee from Vietnam and 22 Jump Street), Phillip Rhee, Ernie Reyes Jr (The Rundown), Russell Wong (Romeo Must Die). In 2005, the Hong Kong-born American Shou made another video-game film, DOA: Dead or Alive.
  2. Mark Dacascos, Crying Freeman, Canada-France-Japan-USA, 1995.     For his feature debut, French critic turned realisateur Christophe Gans wanted Lee. And losing him meant Gans lost half his budget.  Which explains not only Decascos, but his having to do all his stunts. (Then again, he also met  his future wife, Julie Condra).  Gans and Dacascos kept the faith for Le pacte des loups (Brotherhood of the Wolf), 2000. 
  3. Mark Wahlberg, The Big Hit,1997.   Ace hit man Melvin Smiley was written for Martin Lawrence, who is black… considered for Lee, of Hawaiian-Chinese descent (enough to make the 1992 Bruce Lee biopic, Dragon)… and finally portrayed by the Boston Irish-Swedish Wahlberg.  Go figure.
  4. Jay Chou, The Green Hornet, 2001.     Directors  changed – from Kevin Smith to Stephen Chow and finally Frenchman Michel Gondry.  Same for  Kato…  From Lee (opposite Mark Wahlberg) to Chow, himself, to Jet Li (for  $5.2m). and eventually, one of Li’s greatest fans, the Taiwan-born Hong Kong action star, making his  Hollywood debut in  the old  TV role, 1966-67,  of his other idol, Bruce Lee.

 Birth year: Death year: Other name: Casting Calls:  4