An official English version of Jackie Chan’s (成龍) 2015 autobiography Growing Old Before Growing Up <還沒長大就老了> (English title Never Grow Up) has finally been released, and it’s selling like fire. This week, the Oscar-winning martial arts star flew to New York City for a meet and greet event at Barnes & Noble to promote the book. The weather was snowing and bristling cold, but hundreds of fans still gathered at the store to get an opportunity to see Jackie and receive his autograph.
Never Grow Up, which was released last month, is an “extremely honest” memoir of Jackie. It tells his life story from his childhood up to his big breaks in Hollywood, including his honorary Oscar win in 2016.
The book generated some controversy, as Western media chose to focus more on Jackie’s salacious personal life than his life achievements while reporting about the book. Jackie talked a lot about the dark side of his personal life, such as his addiction to gambling, involvement with prostitutes, drunk driving, and irresponsible spending. Jackie’s quote “I really was quite a nasty jerk” was emphasized in many promotional material for the book.
The criticism on his personal life did not phase the 64-year-old. Jackie wanted to be truthful and transparent about the immature decisions he has made in his life. He wanted to reflect on those mistakes so he can inform others about what’s the wrong thing to do. “A lot of it was cherry-picking,” said Jackie when asked about the Western media’s negative reporting. “If I was afraid of the repercussions, I wouldn’t have talked about it. I have no regrets. Today, my goal is to teach others about what is positive so they won’t commit the same mistakes that I’ve done. I will not go read what others say about me. I sleep very well every night.”
Interestingly, while Jackie did get extremely honestly about his personal life—such as talking about being an absent father to his son Jaycee Chan (房祖名) and his relationship with the late Teresa Teng (鄧麗君), he did not mention his illegitimate daughter Etta Ng (吳卓林), who he sired with his one-time lover Elaine Ng (吳綺莉). Etta is now 19 years old and was raised by Elaine without Jackie’s involvement.
This article is written by Addy for JayneStars.com.