Alibaba’s Jack Ma stars in short kung fu movie to promote tai chi

A promotional photo posted on a Weibo account for Jack Ma.

Jet Li and Donnie Yen also feature in film to be released next month

Alibaba founder Jack Ma Yun will make his big-screen debut alongside action stars Jet Li, Donnie Yen and Sammo Hung Kam-bo in a short kung fu movie released next month.

Ma’s appearance was to promote tai chi, a traditional Chinese martial art that Ma has pursued for decades, Alibaba said on Saturday. Alibaba owns the South China Morning Post.

The movie Gong Shou Dao, or The Art of Attack and Defence, will be released on November 11, the date of an online shopping extravaganza known as Singles Day in China.

But Alibaba said the two events were not linked.

Ma assembled the team to realise his decade-long dream of becoming a tai chi master, the company said.

He unveiled the movie’s poster on his microblog account, showing him surrounded by the other stars.

“That night … that dream,” Ma wrote in the post, without giving details of the plot.

The movie will also feature Wu Jing, whose Wolf Warrior II reset box office records in China.

Other big names in the movie include champion boxer Zou Shiming, Thai actor Tony Jaa, and retired Mongolian sumo champion Asashoryu Akinori.

Along with Jet Li, Ma started a lifestyle company called Taiji Zen offering tai chi courses online.

Ma had also done magic shows and sung Peking Opera.

South China Morning Post