Jackie Chan at Cannes earlier this year (Photo: George Pimentel/WireImage)
Jackie Chan is the latest action icon to hop (out a window, landing on an awning, flipping into a moving car) aboard the “Expendables” franchise, announcing that he has officially joined Sylvester Stallone's merry band, which also includes (or has included) Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bruce Willis, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Randy Couture, Stone Cold Steve Austin, Terry Crews (pause for breath), Dolph Lundgren, Chuck Norris, and Jean-Claude Van Damme.
Chan said, at a press conference in Malaysia while promoting another movie, that Stallone had previously offered him a role in the second “Expendables” movie that he was unable to accept due to scheduling. Completely aside from Chan's stature as one of the global superstars of action cinema, his joining the “Expendables” team can only help the franchise's commercial prospects in China, which is projected as being less than a decade away from being the world's largest movie market.
Not content with affirming his action career—no longer, as he's often hinted in weariness from the injuries he's sustained, over—as “Expendables”-worthy, Chan is also developing a new project with “Rush Hour” cohort Chris Tucker. Tentatively titled “Skip Tracer,” that project is still at an early enough stage that it may be rewritten to become “Rush Hour 4,” though Chan has previously voiced his disinterest in doing any more “Rush Hour” movies. One does, certainly, have to leave a hallowed film franchise be. Not so for “The Expendables,” clearly; fans of the first two installments are no doubt eager to see what Jackie Chan's inimitable style brings to the series.