At 20 years old, Abbas Alizada is dreaming of becoming a Hollywood star. Following in Bruce Lee’s footsteps, this young man from Afghanistan works hard to look like the martial arts legend and has been training in Kung Fu since he was seven years old. With more than 50,000 followers on Twitter and about 40,000 likes on Facebook, he has become quite the local celebrity in Afghanistan without ever having made a movie.
A striking resemblance
The 20-year-old man comes from a poor family with 10 children and hopes that his reputation online will get his family out of poverty and away from the violence.
Not only is he the spitting image of Bruce Lee with his facial features, he has also grown his hair in a similar fashion and has been working on his figure so he can look as similar to the star from ‘Enter the Dragon’ as possible. His Facebook page was set up by some of his friends and is called ‘Bruce Hazara’ but Alizada has said that he doesn’t like this nickname because it indicates his ethnic and tribal origin in a country where differences between tribes can lead to death. Instead, he prefers his other nickname: ‘The Afghan Bruce Lee’.
The exemplary master
The real Bruce Lee died in 1973 at the mere age of 32 from an allergic reaction to painkillers. But despite his short life, he became famous around the world for being a champion in martial arts, a professor as well as a movie star. Lee found fame when martial arts started to take off, getting main roles in films that became symbols of the genre such as ‘The Big Boss’ and ‘Enter the Dragon', which respectively were released in 1971 and 1972.
The films became popular hits in the United States and led to producers from Hong Kong giving him a film worthy of his talent, ‘The Way of the Dragon’, which increased his legendary status. Over the decades, these films forged the legend that is Bruce Lee and inspired multiple generations. Abbas Alizada is one of the many people who were inspired by him and wants to follow in the master’s footsteps.
Between a Hollywood dream and war against ISIS
‘I want to be a champion in my country and a Hollywood star,’ he declared in an interview at Kabul’s Darulaman palace, whose desolate walls are a symbol of the war that has raged in Afghanistan over the last 35 years.
‘The destruction here makes me sad, but it also inspires me.’ Alizada owes his recognition to the demise of the Islamist government that forbid internet use as well as television and other forms of entertainment until they were overthrown by the United States in 2001 after the attacks on 11th September.
His photos and videos went viral among his small internet following in Afghanistan, but this post has helped Alizada to increase his reputation abroad.
‘The only news that comes from Afghanistan is about war,’ declared the young man.
‘I am happy that my story is a positive one.’
Before he died in 1973, Bruce Lee had only filmed 40 minutes of ‘Game of Death’. But although he passed away, Bruce Lee is still alive in the eyes of the public, his fans and especially mercantile producers. A certain Robert Clouse decided in 1978, so six years after they began filming ‘Game of Death’, to go back to Bruce Lee’s film. Of the forty minutes that the actor had filmed, Robert Clouse only used fifteen of them.
Today, Abbas Alizada has one wish: to finish this film that fans of the master consider incomplete. This idea could turn out great. Check out the video to find out more!