Robert Lee Q&A
The following was taken place in the Temple Discussion on 03/15/01 between regular vistitors of this site (Jt, Drunken Master, Jimmy, RGB, Steve Kerridge, Dave R, Hector Martinez, Deron, GB, Marcus Emery, Arkheno, Rajesh Rakesh, Ned, Steve, Normz, Brian (UK), J Black, Babu, John Overall, Emily, Toayb Hamidi, Jen, Simon Kenny, Blairo, Milosz, Jason Rainwater, Nick Clarke, Bentley Wan-Long, Jonathan, Kevin and Kioko) with special guest Robert Lee.
Temple of the Unknown: Hello, and welcome Mr. Robert Lee to the Temple of Unknown forum. We are proud and happy to have you here. We hope that your visit here is a pleasurable one and not your last.
Robert Lee: Thank you for having me on your great Forum JT. It is a pleasure for me to be able to answer questions for people that are fans of Bruce. I first would like to say that Bruce Lee was a very special person in many peoples lives. Bruce has been the cause of many people changing their lives around for the better. It also brings great pleasure for me to be able to share the Lee families memories with you all out there. Yes, Bruce was a hero to many but he was also a brother, husband , father etc. I hope I can shed some light on the human side of Bruce. He was great and did great things, but he was also just a regular guy who liked to hang out with friends and family. With all that said, lets get started.
Temple of the Unknown: Hello, Mr. Lee (may we call you Robert?). My question may seen strange, but did Bruce ever meet Elvis Presley? Considering that Ed Parker was a bodyguard/instuctor to Elvis, and Bruce was a friend of Ed's, did the two ever cross paths? Do you know if Bruce was even interested in meeting Elvis? Thanks for coming on JT's forum!
Robert Lee: As far as I know , Bruce never got the chance to meet up with Elvis. I am sure he would have liked to. I think everyone would have liked to hang with the King.
Temple of the Unknown: Hi Robert I suppose theres
so many things I'd like to ask you, Where do I begin?
Well I'll start by saying how much we are all looking forward to you coming over in September for the convention as this will be the biggest event to hit our shores for many years and I'm sure the British fans will also be looking forward to this in a big way. I'd like to ask you what you think Bruce would be doing today, in terms of films and Martial Arts and do you think he would be mixing both ( martial arts movies ) or maybe playing or making non-martial arts films- ie science fiction ( Terminator type movies )maybe.
Robert Lee: How are you my friend? I really look forward in coming to the UK for the convention. It's going to be a great time. People will be surprised in what we are going to share with them.
If Bruce were here with us, he would still be involved with films. Bruce would be doing more directing as well as some acting. Bruce would love to show that an older person can be in great shape and still be able to defend himself or herself.
Temple of the Unknown: Hi Robert, Looking foreward to your visit to the UK. A couple of questions. What do you think of the current crop of Hong Kong / American action stars such as Jackie Chan, Sammo Hung, and Jet Li? What rare unseen footage do you know exists? I know about the 1 hr behind the scenes G.O.D. footage but do you know of other footage? Did Bruce, before he died, plan to stay in Hong Kong or move perminantly back to America?
Robert Lee: Thank you for your questions. I can only answer one or two at this time because of my schedule. First I like to say that Bruce opened all sorts of avenues for Asian actors. I am happy that finally , people like Chan or Hung are getting their respect that they deserve. They are great performers. All these people have been influenced by Bruce and in fact most had worked with Bruce. There are still many obstacles for the Asian actors to overcome. As far as missing footage, all I can say is, yes, there is much. Hopefully in time we all will be able to see what Bruce wanted to share with us.
Temple of the Unknown: Hi Robert Hope your well and in good health!
1. What exactly are these 'on going investigations' that are going into Lee's 'accidental' death and exactly how have these delayed your book?
2. We all know Lee did NOT die 'accidentally' can you add your point on this issue?
3. When is the book out?
Robert Lee: I believe we have touched base on these questions in the past Jimmy my friend. Now is not the time to discuss such matters. I will say that the Lee side of the Family have their beliefs, and our beliefs are valid. Thank you for your concern.
Temple of the Unknown: Greetings my man! It is indeed to have such a person as yourself on JT's forum! It's obvious that people know you from your brother Bruce but I know that you have your own identity and that is apparent in that I am a big fan of your record album "The Ballad of Bruce Lee". I have the original LP from the 70's, I have the american 45 RPM single as well as the Japanese 45 RPM single. I thank you for making my childhood a most memorable one by coming into this world and being part of the legend that is: "The Lee Family!". Robert, I know you that you knew this was coming: Could you send me your autograph? I would really love to add it to my collection! I will send JT my address and perhaps he can forward it to you.
Peace and God Bless!
Robert Lee: Hector, I hear many good things about you from my assistant and friend David Tadman. I will say to you keep searching for the truth and thank you for the good words on my music. It is my personal Jeet Kune Do. I will have no problem sending you an autograph picture. Just forward your information to JT. Thank you.
Temple of the Unknown: Greetings Robert, It's great,to have to here, as an honored guest. Could you tell us,if from Bruce's script,or from what you know and understand did the film have an actual ending? Or did he not get to that point,as things were subjected to change,or better yet improvise along the way daily? Was there a sequence,as far as what was to filmed,or addressed first? Thank you for time,and I wish you all the best. Many thanks for sharing moments of your time.
Robert Lee: I will tell you this about the Game. Bruce did have some sixty pages more or less. It had dialogue, ideas, fights etc. Bruce was the type to always be changing and discovering new ideas. Bruce might have, or not have changed what he had written. As far as I know there was no ending filmed yet, or beginning. There was a story line though. Bruce worked very hard on the Game and it shows.
Temple of the Unknown: Hi again Robert, Hope you're well, These are the questions again I asked you last week,
Did you have any luck with them???Regarding Game of Death,I know you have a recording on Kareems level in great quality,Were you there for most of the filming of G.O.D???
I'd like to ask if you know what outdoor footage was filmed??? Do you know if the pics where Bruce has a brown suit on are screentests/rehearsels and if the ones where he wears black jeans were actual G.O.D scenes???
Also Whang Ing Sik was shown in Legend so he was definately on set, was a scene filmed featuring him???
Also do you know if Yusaka Kurata a wooden swordsman was filmed on floor 2???
Someone once said that in the G.O.D script, outside Bruce and 4 friends would fight Karate men, I believe it was 30 then another 50, 80 guys seems impossible, but since they were 5 of them thats 15 each and some might have legged it, is that attached pic those Karate men???
Robert Lee: Nice to hear from you again. I have to say that there was much going on with The Game Of Death. I am sure there is extra footage here or there. We must not loose sight in what we have already in front of us, it can drive one crazy imagining what else is out there. When I have more time I can answer your questions in depth. You have the address.
Temple of the Unknown: Hello Robert, What is your fondest memory of Bruce? Thankyou for taking the time to answer my question.
Robert Lee: There are many great memories I have of Bruce, but all in all it was just being around him and seeing him express himself. Bruce was simply awesome. He was humble, friendly, a good brother and father. I use to love being part of the workouts and sharing time with him that way.
Temple of the Unknown: Thankyou for taking time out of your busy schedule to share your thoughts man. I have two questions...
1) Is there anything you witnessed Bruce do, in any facet of his life, that you have copied/adopted in your own?
2) If you had one question to ask BRUCE - what would it be?
Robert Lee: WOW, this is a good one. Just being around Bruce influenced me greatly. I learned how to truthfully find my own path and Bruce was a big part of that. If Bruce was here today the one thing I would say to him was, I love you.
Temple of the Unknown: I wanna know what do you think about the movie "Dragon" by Rob Cohen ? if it's good adaptation of Bruce Lee's life ?
Robert Lee: I would honestly say that it does not portray Bruce's life in the correct light. Unfortunately the real story has not been told correctly. Soon enough, the Lee family will be doing accurate projects on Bruce. I would say that Dragon to me was very disappointing. If you can only see that the rest of Bruce's family was not even portrayed in the film. That should tell you something right there.
Temple of the Unknown: Thank you for taking the time to visit. Are you in touch with the BLEF and Linda Lee?
Robert Lee: I do not talk to Linda that often, but we still touch base.
Temple of the Unknown: I lent my Bruce Lee tapes to my friend's 7 year old son and I've yet to see them again. Okay, here are my questions:
1) What would you like the new generation to know about Bruce (besides his obvious martial arts abilities)?
2) What was your parent's reactions when Bruce dropped out of the University of Washington and what was Bruce thinking at the time?
3a and 3b) Do your siblings share your point of view on Bruce's cause of death? (hope that that's not too personal)
Robert Lee: I would really like the new generations of fans to look at Bruce as a human being that did incredible things, and he was able to overcome many obstacles in his life. I guess I would simply want others to know that if you do express yourself truthfully, your path in life will come to you.
Temple of the Unknown: I beleive I am correct in saying that Bruce lost a great deal of body mass during 1973 and ceased his regular training (of twenty years plus?) six weeks prior to his death in July due to exhaustion. Did this happen, and/or please could you tell us if, in your opinion, Bruce was to blame for Bruce's death? Many thanks Robert. I have the greatest respect for Bruce and the Lee family.
Robert Lee: Bruce did loose a lot of weight close to his passing. I cant go into detail on why this was, at this time. I will say that the Lee family will come out with much desired information surrounding Bruce's death, soon as the right time permits. Bruce did not do himself in. There were other factors involved.
Temple of the Unknown: Hello robert I am a collector of the lau au san bruce lee figures and have been since 1988,at present i have 8 of the original 12 that were made, i have been told that you gave him permission to make them if this is true do you know of anyone who has the total 12, or maybe a photo 0f them,hope you can be of help and look forward to your visit to the uk.thanks for your time.
Robert Lee: The best person to ask that question would be Jeff Chinn, who is in San Francisco, He has it all. I think you can reach him through JT. That was the easiest question yet.
Temple of the Unknown: No question for me here... I'll just read what everyone else has to say. Just wanna say thank you for coming to this forum!!! Really great!!!
I wish you and your family the best of luck!!
Take care Robert,
Robert Lee: That is very kind of you. Thank you for having me.
Temple of the Unknown: Hi Robert, looking forward to seeing you in September in the UK. Can I ask what was the best practical joke played on you when you were younger, it is well recorded that Bruce was an avid practical joker.
Robert Lee: When I arrived to the states and was staying at Bruce's house, I fell victim to one of his jokes. Bruce asked me to come in his study for a minute. I walked in to where Bruce was, and he was whipping his Chucks. He was incredible. He was moving them around with incredible speed. I was very impressed and walked out the room. As I was walking down the hall way Bruce ran behind me with his war cry swinging the chucks and hit me on the back of my head. I almost had a heart attack. Bruce started laughing because he changed his real Chucks for a pair of fake rubber ones. I thought they were the real thing. He loved that.
I look forward in seeing you in the UK. Steve has told me good things about you.
Temple of the Unknown: A couple of questions regarding game of death:
-some God footage(a lot of it unfinished or rehearsal shots) was released in the early 70's, then disappeared to never been seen again. How did this footage make it to a theatre in Toronto, and why would it never be shown again? (or who yanked it?)
-did Bruce shoot any God footage in the 2-3 weeks before his death, and if he did, could his appearance(weight loss) have anything to do with the footage being hidden from the public?
-and an un-related question...while I'm sure Bruce was proud to call you his brother, did you ever find it difficult to carve your own niche in the world, and did there ever come a time where you just wished people would leave you alone about Bruce and let you get on with your life?
Thank you for this great opportunity Mr. Lee.
Robert Lee: Well, I must say you have been misinformed on the Game footage. I wish I had the time to tell you what I know. Let me just say.
1. No footage was released in Toronto, that has been any different from what has been released anywhere.
2. Bruce's weight had nothing to do with being covered up.
3. It was hard for me after Bruce died because he was a loved one. I always had my own identity but like all older brothers I looked up to Bruce and followed some of his beliefs.
Temple of the Unknown: Thank you for your time and patience. This is truly an honor for me!
1) During Bruce Lee's final year in HK (you were in the USA with your mother) why did he not go to your mother, sisters or Peter when all fo the stresses of the film industry, the gossip mongers (Shaw bro.s pestering him), etc. became too much? Was Linda his only support?
2) How close were/are you to Brandon and Shannon? Did either sibling share any intentions to "investigate" their father's death?
May your brother's spirit live on.
I look forward to your book.
Robert Lee: Bruce always kept in contact with us. Bruce really handled stress well. We his family, always were there to support him in anyway. I was close to Brandon but unfortunately Shannon and I have not stayed in contact because of schedules. We will always have a bond as Uncle and niece.
Temple of the Unknown: Hello robert I wanted to ask if you have any plans to release the game of death footage on dvd, also is there any other behind the scenes footage of bruce lee movies as yet unseen.
Robert Lee: I do not have the rights to the studio Game Of Death footage. I do have some of my own footage that I will be doing projects with in the future. There is a lot of footage out there yet to be seen. I even hear that there is an alternate fight for the end of Way .
Temple of the Unknown: Hello from the UK!
I have a question or two:
(1) Do you have any details of Bruce Lee's trip to London in the early 1970s. I'm keen to know what he thought of the UK and what places he visited and if he ever intended to return.
(2) Will any of your Game of Death footage be included in the Region 2 Hong Kong Legends DVD due out this Summer? Ditto any convention footage that may be taken on your visit to these shores later this year.
Robert Lee: I can speak for myself and say that I really like England and the British people. I really don't know much about Bruce's trip to England. As far as the other question, I really do not know what will be on the DVD when it is released.
Temple of the Unknown: Which of Bruce's movies is you favourite? Mine is Enter The Dragon.
Robert Lee: Well, I love them all. I must say that Way is my favorite, because it was Bruce's baby. He did everything on that film.
Temple of the Unknown: It is really an honour for me to ask a question or 2 from the lee family (you) and it is really an honour for all of us here at JT's Temple of the Unknown forum and it is my hope that your brothers and the lee family's legacy will continue to live on as it has for the last decade or so as well as the Lee family too.
I wish you the best of life and hope that you are well and happy with your life and enjoying every moment of life and enjoying it to the max! I Have a question about yourself and that is when you arrived to the States your brother(bruce lee) was there for greeting and when he saw you he told you that you should not tell every one that you are his brother(bruce) and he planned a weight gain plan for you. So My question is this: How did it feel to you when he said that u should not tell every one that you are his brother? Were you mad at him when he said those words or did you thought that he was talking about your benefit? Do you know if Bruce Lee ever met with Muhammad Ali or Elvis Presley as he had contacts with Mr. Ed Parker? If You EVER had a chance to "do it all over again" what would it be, what would you asked and learned any thing from him? sorry for this long post and I hope that your visit here will be one of its kind.
Robert Lee: Bruce did say that to me but he as only joking. Bruce was very caring and loving brother. He would do anything to protect me. That was Bruce's character, always joking around. Bruce would have loved to have met Ali and the other. Bruce had much respect for Parker.
Temple of the Unknown: Hi, First off, I want to say thank you very very much for the signed picture I received thru David Tadman - it was such a thrill and it's a wonderful picture.
Secondly, I'd like to ask you if there is any question that no body has asked you about Bruce that you wish they would. Also, Which movie character was most like Bruce? Just want to say, again, thank you for sharing your memories of Bruce with us.
Robert Lee: Hi Jen, David has told me that you are a great fan of Bruce and that you understand the spirit and the philosophy that Bruce was all about. It was my pleasure to send such a fan a small token of my appreciation for your support of Bruce and the Lee family. Bruce was probably most like his character in Enter The Dragon. You see his Physical and you hear his philosophy. It is important to note that Bruce was truly one of the guys. He was very humble and sincere. As far as a question that has never been asked, well, you just asked it.
Temple of the Unknown: Hi Robert many many thanks for taking the time to answer questions on the forum, I am sure you have been asked them dozens of time sbefore so it is much appreciated. If I may have the honour?
1) How much of Bruce did you see in Brandon and how did news of his death affect you?
2) Can you recall a fight in which Bruce was involved and is there any truth in the story that Bruce left for America in 59 because he hadn't beaten up the son of a triad and had a price on his head?
3) What are the rest of your remaining family upto these days, has Peter retired now? Once again many thanks Respect and good luck in all you do.
Robert Lee: Bruce had many fights, and in Hong Kong you never know who you are fighting or who the family of the victims are. Bruce had some trouble, but nobody he could not take care of himself.
Brandons passing was tragic, we must see what he brought us as a gift. He shared himself with us, just like Bruce did.
Temple of the Unknown: There has been talk of you brother owning a fire arm could you shed some light on this? Also there was also a lot of debate regarding Bruce using steroids do you know anything on this topic? I am looking forward to you book,by all indications it could be a best sell with Bruce Lee fans. Thanks in advance.
Robert Lee: Bruce liked all kinds of Weapons and studied how they worked. Yes, he did own firearms. He recieved them as gifts. I am a firearms expert and license to teach.
Temple of the Unknown: Hello Robert, I'm so glad You found some time to answer our questions. I hope I won't hit in any difficult topics but could You tell us anything about Your investigation regarding Your brother's death? And second thing: do You know what exactly happened to Bruce while his back injury? Was it caused by lifting weights? Thanks
Robert Lee: Bruce's death has been investigated and always will be. The Lee family does believe there was foul play. In the future the Lee family will be coming out with projects that support our beliefs. There is much to say, and much did happen. When the time is right, all will see the truth.
Bruce hurt his back from weights not a fight like you see in Dragon story.
Temple of the Unknown: Dear Robert, Could You tell us how often Bruce used to write to You and are You going to release his personal, family letters (something like John Little did)? Much appreciated.
Robert Lee: I and my family had contact with Bruce frequently. By phone or letters we kept in touch. I do have very valuable writings from Bruce, and plan on possibly using them for future projects.
Temple of the Unknown: Hello Robert Lee, how are you? When did you discover you wanted to be a musician? What inspired you to be one?
Robert Lee: As a small child I found the love for music. As I got older I found out that music was my personal Jeet Kune Do. There were many great groups out when I was growing up and they influenced me greatly. I still make music to this day.
Temple of the Unknown: Hi Robert It's a real pleasure to have you here.
Question : I was informed from your site through David Tadman that Bruce Lee wrote 60 pages to his Game of Death script. I was hoping that you could kindly answer a few questions i have about the script.
1/ Could you please explain the basic plot to the film?
2/ What did Bruce have in mind for the ending of the film i.e. after Bruce has reached the top of the pagoda?
3/ Did Bruce play the character 'Tang Lung' (Chinese Dragon) as he previously did in 'The Way of the Dragon?'
4/ I've heard that Yusuaki Kurata filmed a fight scene against Bruce on one of the levels of the pagoda (he previously worked with Bruce on 'Unicorn Palm'). Do you have any information about this please?
Robert Lee: Unfortunately I do not have the time to go into detail on this matter right know. You have contacted me before with similar questions. You can post them on my site and I will make time to answer them within the next week.
Temple of the Unknown: I admire your brother Bruce very much. He's my hero, and continues to inspire me. His life was an example of what's possible when we strive to find and actualize our ultimate potential in life. I was wondering, is there anyone you look up to or admire, and why?
Also, what is your personal philosophy of life?
Robert Lee: There are many people who I consider Heroes. I must say that Bruce was, and is my true hero. He taught me so much about life in a small amount of time. The bottom line is that Bruce expressed himself truthfully and he rocked the world when doing it. I remember going to the theater and watching Bruce on screen and thinking WOW, he is incredible. I was simply a fan like everyone else, and I still am. Bruce was awesome.
Temple of the Unknown: What do you think, Robert, can any one in this world express JKD in its pure form like MASTER LEE.
Robert Lee: JKD is the truth. It is the truth of life and the truth of ones path (The Journey we take). JKD means to grow and adapt with life in any situation. This does not stop at only Martial Arts. You can be a painter or writer and musician. All of these and more have their own personal Jeet Kune Do. JKD is going to be different for everyone, and it should. It is a way of life. To fully know Jeet Kune Do, you must strive to know yourself.
Temple of the Unknown: I can't believe that you are here, this is too awesome! Anyway, I just wanted to let you know that I am currently in production of a low-budget remake to your brother's unfinished classic "Game of Death". It will take most of Bruce's elements with a mixture of some of my ideas. This isn't going to be a big movie as it is being filmed by high school students! This is going to be my first film, and I wanted it to be a tribute to the master who inspired me to be both a martial artist AND a movie director/writer/actor. I've told all of my friends about it, and they all want to be in it! I hope that this film would make Bruce proud of his younger audience. I mean, I still see tons of people in my school walking around with Bruce Lee t-shirts, talking about Enter The Dragon, like his movies just came out a month ago for the first time! There is even a girl that I know that says her favorite film is "Way of the Dragon"! Anyway it was a pleasure talking (or posting!) with you! And by the way, your theme for "The Warrior Within'" was the one of the coolest songs I heard when I was growing up! It was the first song ever to be stuck in my head! I just wish it was an easier song to find! Thanks for the chat!
Robert Lee: Thank you so much for your kind words. You truly flatter me and Bruce. I hope your film is a true beginning in a great future for you. Bruce would be proud. You seem positive and energetic with your project, just like Bruce was. Good luck and maybe one day you can sign an autograph for me.
Temple of the Unknown: Welcome mr Lee,
I hope things are well with you. Well, I see that everyone's asked most of the questions that I wanted to know about, except one...
So are you ever planning on coming up to Canada any time soon?
Sure, there's not much to see or do up here (except winter activities), but I'm sure I could definitely get a really big line up of Lee-fans to come see you. Just curious.
Best of luck to you and your family (especially your son's budding career in the entertainment biz). Cheers!
Robert Lee: I think Canada is beautiful. Very European there. I hope one day to come up there and share some of my reflections in some type of venue. If I do, it would be nice to meet you.
Temple of the Unknown: Hello Mr. Lee,
Could you possibly tell us your feelings on people that continue to make money on your brother's name,even if it means bending the truth?(like in Dragon) , Thank you
Robert Lee: It is unfortunate that certain people will go to any length to profit on Bruce's name. The Lee family has watched this from a far, but we know what is going on. This is why we, the Lee family plan on doing our own projects so we can get the real truth out there. There was more to Bruce than what he ate in his diet or how many push-ups he did. To truly know Bruce, you must understand where he came from. There are still many great stories to tell and the Lee family will tell them.
Temple of the Unknown: Mr. Lee Do you have any plans to record new music in the future?
Robert Lee: I have just recorded a song for my son. It is about Bruce. The song is gaining popularity in Hong Kong. I am always playing around with music, it is in my blood. Music is my Jeet Kune Do.
Temple of the Unknown: Thanks for your time and wonderful insight this evening! What plans, if any, did Bruce have for the future of Hollywood and Asian Cinema? Would he be proud? (Per the success of Crouching Tiger). In Enter the Dragon you can notice Lee had many of today's stars (Jackie chan, Sammo, Bolo) featured.
Robert Lee: What a shot. Bruce, I am sure would have made Asians more of a household name in the industry. Bruce would have loved some of these movies today, but he would always preach realism in fighting.
Robert Lee: Well it is time for me to go. I hope I answered most of all your questions. I would like to say in leaving that Bruce's energy is still alive because of fans like you. Bruce is looking down with a smile. Remember all things happen for a reason, and tonight Bruce's energy brought us together. I want to thank you all for your kind words and on going support for Bruce and the Lee family. I hope to do this again one day. Thank You
All of the questions and answers were compiled by JT
Want to visit Robert Lee's site CLICK HERE