Veteran martial artist Yu Chenghui dies at 76
Updated: 2015-07-06 10:22
Actor Yu Chenghui. [File photo]
Yu was born in Penglai, east China's Shandong province on Aug 16, 1939. Yu entered the Qingdao Amateur Sports School to study Chinese martial arts in 1951. After winning a martial arts championship in Qingdao at age 21, Yu enrolled as a student of martial arts at Shandong Sports University.
In 1963, Yu won a martial arts competition with his "Drunken Sword" performance. That same year, he injured his leg during training, left the university and worked in a manufacturing factory. Even so, Yu continued to train during his spare time.
Yu is one of the disciples of the "mantis sector" of martial arts. He obtained inspiration from observing mantises and created the "mantis sword", a type of sword art using two swords. In 1979, Yu was appointed as a coach in martial arts by Ningxia Wushu Team, and began building his recognition in the field of martial arts.
Yu played many highly skilled martial arts masters on television and in films, including Feng Qingyang in The Legendary Swordsman, Zhang Sanfeng in The New Heaven Sword and the Dragon Sabre, Wang Renze in The Shaolin Temple (the film that shot Jet Li to stardom) and Yip Man, the man who taught Bruce Lee his kung fu know-how in The Legend of Bruce Lee.
Many of Yu's fans and those who worked with him expressed their condolences on social media.
Danny Chan, who played Bruce Lee in The Legend of Bruce Lee, said, "My master and teacher in The Legend of Bruce Lee, Yu Chenghui, passed away today. R.I.P."
Actor and director Deng Chao, who worked with Yu in The New Heaven Sword and the Dragon Sabre and The Four, also bemoaned the passing of a great martial artist.
"His dedication, his performances, and his devotion to martial arts are still vivid in my mind. Master, rest in peace," Deng wrote on his Sina Weibo account.
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