Wong Shun Leung Documentary Fundrasing Appeal

Renowned author, film-maker & Bruce Lee historian, John Little, has decided to create the definitive documentary tribute to the late, great, Ving Tsun legend, Sifu Wong Shun Leung. As this is an independent production that is NOT supported by a major movie studio like his previous works (such as 'Bruce Lee: In His Own Words' or 'Bruce Lee: A Warrior's Journey'), John is appealing for donations from devotees of 'WSLVT' and the wider Ving Tsun Community in order to raise the budget for this film.

Therefore, we are asking you, via this page, to show your support for this long-overdue tribute to one of the greatest Martial Artists of the 20th Century, and the man who more than perhaps any other of Ving Tsun patriarch Ip Man's students, helped to put Ving Tsun on the world's Martial Arts map thru his now legendary 'beimo' matches in Hong Kong. As the late Sifu Jesse Glover, Bruce Lee's first ever student in the USA, said on many occasions, "Wong Shun Leung deserves to be remembered as much more than a footnote in the story of Bruce Lee. If it wasn't for the likes of Ip Man AND Wong Shun Leung, there would not have been Bruce Lee and his legacy of JKD." So, please indicate your willingness to assist in this appeal and to donate something financially towards this worthy project. 

A 'PayPal' account has been set up specifically for the purpose of collecting your contributions towards the budget necessary to produce the proposed Wong Shun Leung Documentary Film that will be created by Mr John Little. We ask that you dig deep and give generously to this appeal by going to www.paypal.com and make your donation to the account: wslfilm@gmail.com

Would instructors, heads of schools and organisations please alert your people of this appeal and encourage them to make a contribution personally, or alternately, collect their contributions yourself and pass them on to the appeal as a bulk amount. Please record the names of those who donate so that we can be sure to acknowledge their generosity & assistance at a later stage. On behalf of all those involved with this project, I sincerely thank you.

- David Peterson -



***An Important Message from Mr John Little:


I just wanted to say "thank you" to those who have contributed thus far to raising the funds necessary to help us to produce the first ever documentary on the legendary Wong Shun Leung (we will be posting an updated list of the names of all of the people who have contributed to this project on this Event page in the weeks to come).

As most of you know, Wong Shun Leung was known by the sobriquet of “The King of Talking Hands,” as he had little use for people who simply talked tough; he preferred to do his tough talking with his fists. By all accounts he was exceptionally good at this. According to Jesse Glover (Bruce Lee’s first student in America), Lee had pegged the number of Wong’s victories in hand-to-hand combat at over 100. Even conservative estimates put the number in excess of 60. His experience in such encounters tempered his approach to Wing Chun, allowing him to refine the art further in order to reflect the realities he had learned and experienced in the streets.

To this end, Wong Shun Leung was one of the few true men of action in the martial arts world. I have seen many martial artists and their students (particularly since the dawning of the Internet age) refer to themselves as “warriors,” but when you actually consider what a true warrior is, what he faces (often routinely) and what odds he’s willing to face and often overcome, you realize that few, indeed, are worthy of the description.

Wong Shun Leung was different. Far different. It is my hope to fashion a platform with this film that will let the world know about this difference and why (and how) Wong Shun Leung lived his life and how he became, from a certain perspective, one of the “last” true warriors of the 20th Century. And perhaps more importantly he was also a husband, a father, a teacher, a thinker and friend. These facets need to be explored and brought forth in the film.

And while Wong had more real life fights than Bruce Lee and Ip Man combined, the latter has had four feature films devoted to his martial legacy and the former has had more documentaries made about him than almost any other individual in the world. By contrast Wong Shun Leung has had … nothing. This is an inexplicable oversight of a great martial artist’s achievements and an ignoring of a great man’s legacy that has gone on for far too long.

I recognize that there exist web sites that offer prizes or rewards for certain levels of contributions, such as free DVDs of the finished film, posters, etc. I think this is (and should be) the wrong incentive, just as adding colored belts of rank to Wing Chun shouldn’t make more people want to sign up for lessons. In both cases it is unnecessary. Either you believe in the value of the subject matter enough to support it or you don’t. The real “value” here is to create a proper (the important elements of the man's life emphasized), professional (well produced by a quality team that cares about the subject matter) and enduring tribute to a man who many of his instructors and their students have indicated through word (in writing) and deed (through their schools) is important to them and worthy of such a tribute. In other words, this is a cause to get behind through its intrinsic "worth" alone and its worth to Wong Shun Leung's legacy going forward. Is it an asset to have such a film to show potential students and members of the public (and even themselves from time to time to keep the flame of their passion burning bright)? Say, as against not investing in such a project and putting what they otherwise might have invested in the creation of this film into, say, a weekend vacation? Only you can make that decision. We’ve all witnessed funds being raised for various causes; I should think that the first ever documentary done on Wong Shun Leung might likewise be worthy.

To date, some people have donated as little as $20 to this film. This is fine, and, indeed, may be all that they have to spare (it's an economy of scale; for some people $20 might represent a large part of their weekly income). Others have donated $100 and still others have donated $1,000. There are still others that could easily cover the entire budget without it impacting their livelihood or lifestyle – if they so choose, much like they might purchase a painting, sculpture or other work of art. However, with this disparity in contribution, what financial or other gains can the production company contribute -- particularly on a project that still hasn't yet the money to start, let alone proceed to completion?

Certain "enticements" to contribute (such as posters, copies of DVDs, attending gala screenings) all cost ADDITIONAL money to produce, which at this point only adds to the budget, so I'm not sure what promises we should (or can) make with regard to enticements to potential investors at this point in time. It would be nice to at least give every investor a copy of the finished film on DVD but until we're in a position to make the film we can't really make a pledge to this effect.

Again, the big thing everyone gets from a donation is the creation of a lasting tribute in film to Wong Shun Leung. Contributors/investors will know that they were instrumental in righting a huge wrong and bringing Wong Shun Leung back to life for future generations to come to know, to understand, and to continue to learn from. It will give the man himself an actual "say" in how his own legacy (as the film will feature Wong Shun Leung speaking in his own words about his life, his art and his legacy) will be presented and it should be a source of pride for each and every one of his students not only to view it (hopefully repeatedly) but also to have been responsible for bringing it into existence.

I second David Peterson’s earlier requests to please keep the donations coming in. Let’s all do what we can to fashion a monument to honor Wong Shun Leung that will truly be more lasting than bronze.

Please make your donations to wslfilm@gmail.com via 'PayPal' (www.paypal.com)

- John Little -


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