Jim Kelly, the first Black Martial Arts actor, passed away on Saturday (29th June) following his battle with cancer. He was famous for appearing in Bruce Lee's 'Enter The Dragon'.
Martial Arts actor Jim Kelly died aged 67 on Saturday (29th June 2013). He was best known for his role in Enter The Dragon alongside Bruce Lee and John Saxon. The film, made in 1977, combines martial arts, spying and crime. He appeared in other Martial Arts films including Black Samurai, Hot Potato and Three The Hard Way.
Bruce Lee in Enter The Dragon, 1977.
Kelly was the first Black Martial Arts actor. He was discovered whilst teaching Martial Arts in L.A. His career continued throughout the 70's.
Continue reading: Actor Jim Kelly Loses His Battle With Cancer Aged 67
Cause of death is as of yet unknown to the media
Jim Kelly, who starred alongside Bruce Lee in Enter The Dragon, has sadly passed away aged 67. Kelly started studying martial arts in 1964 in Kentucky and later moved to California. In the 1980s, he re-trained as a professional tennis coach.
Lee and Kelly starred together in Enter The Dragon
Famous for bringing martial arts to the black community – in films at least – Kelly paved the way for Afro Caribbean and African Americans to both watch and get involved in Martial Arts. This was exemplified best by looking at the Afro Samurai video game series, and the subsequent animated adaption, which almost certainly wouldn’t have existed without Kelly’s intervention in the fighting genre.
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