Jet Li is 'unrecognisable' in fan photo, sparks health concerns

Ben Arnold
Contributor
Jet Li in Hero (Credit: Miramax)

Martial arts fans are concerned for the health of action star Jet Li after a picture of him in Tibet went viral.

The star of movies like The Expendables and Romeo Must Die was snapped at a Buddhist temple over the weekend, appearing frail and far older than his 55 years.


Li revealed in 2013 that he was suffering both hyperthyroidism and a heart condition, as well as leg and spine injuries sustained during movie stunts.

He quoted his doctor at the time saying that he could ‘either continue making [action] films or spend the rest of his life in a wheelchair’.

(Credit: Getty)

In recent years, he’s significantly cut down his movie-making schedule to concentrate on his charity, The One Foundation, which aids disaster relief and child welfare in China.

But speaking to the South China Morning Post, Li said: “I’m in pain but I’m not in a wheelchair yet.

“I’ve suffered from illnesses, for example hyperthyroidism. I am fat but I can’t lose weight because I am taking medication for my illness. The medication is to control my heart beat. That’s why I can’t do lots of exercise.”

His manager has also sought to dismiss concerns about his health, saying that Li is ‘completely fine’.

Speaking to USA Today, Steven Chasman called the outpouring of concern ‘much ado about nothing’.

“We appreciate everyone’s concern. But Jet is completely fine,” he said. “There’s nothing wrong with him. There’s no life-threatening illness. He’s in great shape.”

“It’s one picture and people are making these interpretations from it. If you took a picture of me at the wrong angle and wrong time of the day, I could look frail as well.”

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