Be the Jackie Chan of Live Entertainment

For those of you who don’t know Jackie Chan, he’s a very famous action hero and martial artist, best known in America for the Rush Hour movie series, but even more famous in Asia.

Here’s a truly archetypal Jackie Chan moment.

If you’re pressed for time, skip the first minute or so, and go straight to the fighting. As you watch it, take note: There’s no CGI here. Chan does all his own stunts.

Of course, the acting could be better, but the action sequences and the actual physical danger that Chan subjects himself to make it irresistible to watch.

What makes it so good is Jackie Chan himself. Not only is he both creative and athletically gifted, he’s also willing to do and try things that others simply will not. The payoff is that he’s become a film legend, creating an entire subgenre of movies and spawning a world of imitators. Without Jackie Chan, there would never have been a Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.

"Jackie Chan at Comic-Con International," @ 2012 Gage Skidmore, used under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license.

“Jackie Chan at Comic-Con International,” @ 2012 Gage Skidmore, used under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license.

I once saw an interview with Chan where the reporter asked him why he did the crazy things he did on set, and why he would risk his own well-being to make a movie more exciting.

“It’s for the fans,” he said, “just for the fans.”

In other words, he does it to delight and astound the audience. He aims to give them something they haven’t seen before and aren’t expecting, but which comes out of his unique talents and abilities, and which he knows they will like.

What has your organization done “for the fans, just for the fans” lately? Perhaps great things. Or, perhaps, this isn’t a lens you look through often enough.

Maybe in your next meeting, you ought to ask the question, “What would Jackie Chan do?”

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