Brad Allan, the influential Australian stuntman, stunt coordinator, and actor who brought fight scenes to life in iconic movies and served as a longtime member of Jackie Chan’s team, has passed away. Allan reportedly died on August 7th from an unspecified illness. He was 48 years old.
News of Allan’s death was announced by Jackie Chan on his official website. “Many years ago while I was filming Mr. Nice Guy, he was just a fan and I remember him coming to visit the set,” wrote Chan in his eulogy. “At that time, he was crazy about Chinese Kung Fu and had practiced it for many years. It was because of his amazing skills and talent, he transformed from being a fan to a stuntman, and eventually joined my JC Stunt Team. He even fought with me in Gorgeous, and I think a lot of people remember this skillful boxer in the movie. He has also contributed to many of my movies.”
Born Bradley James Allan in Melbourne in 1973, he began studying martial arts, boxing, gymnastics, and Chinese circus arts when he was just 10 years old. Several years later, once he celebrated his 15th birthday, Allan got the opportunity to meet two of China’s greatest Wushu athletes, Liang Chang Xing and Tang Lai Wei, who would go on to teach him in the years to come. By the time he reached his late teens, Allan was studying language and martial arts in Asia proper.
During that chance encounter meeting Jackie Chan described above, Allan got to demonstrate his skills for the legendary stuntman-turned-actor. Impressed, Chan brought him on to his team, where he became the first-ever non-Asian member of the iconic Jackie Chan Stunt Team. Over the 12 years spent working there, Allan learned how to progress from stunt performer to action choreographer, stunt coordinator, and, finally, action director.
As a stuntman, Allan graced the screen for major blockbusters like Wonder Woman, Rush Hour 2, The Medallion, and Ninja Assassin. Later on, he flexed his stunt coordinator skills on the Kingsman series, Solo: A Star Wars Story, The World’s End, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, Kick-Ass, Rush Hour 3, and even the upcoming Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings. Additionally, Allan also served as the official fight choreographer for Pacific Rim, 2010’s A Nightmare on Elm Street, The Pacifer, Shanghai Noon, and Shanghai Knights.
Edgar Wright shared a eulogy for Allan, too, as the two worked together frequently in the past. “I’m devastated that the great Brad Allan has left us far too young,” tweeted Wright. “He was simply one of the best action directors & designers out there. I was lucky enough to work with him twice (on Scott Pilgrim & The World’s End), and call him a friend. I have more to say about this genius, but I can’t even process that he’s gone. My thoughts are with his family and loved ones. Love you Brad x.”
Read on for more tributes honoring the late Allan below.
R.I.P – Brad Allan
One of the greats in martial arts and the first non-Asian member of the Jackie Chan stunt team.
Here is a snippet of him lending Jackie a hand in a SNL monologue. pic.twitter.com/zBG53HcFpT
— Harris Dang (aka Critic Name) @ #FantasiaFest (@FilmMomatic) August 7, 2021
I’m devastated that the great Brad Allan has left us far too young. He was simply one of the best action directors & designers out there. I was lucky enough to work with him twice (on Scott Pilgrim & The World’s End), and call him a friend. I have more to say about this genius…
— edgarwright (@edgarwright) August 7, 2021
Brad Allan, one of my biggest idols has passed away. So grateful to have had the chance to meet, work and learn with/from you. Your spirit will live on in our hearts. As he used to say, Jackie Chan Stunt Team FOREVER!
— Max Huang (@themaxhuang) August 7, 2021
A sad RIP to the super-talented Brad Allan. We brought him on on @edgarwright’s recommendation as the stunt coordinator on SOLO. He was a creative master of fight choreography — helped us design Han and Chewie’s fight in the pit and the Enfys Nest train fight and so much more. pic.twitter.com/W0Lb2VIKD3
— Christopher Miller (@chrizmillr) August 7, 2021
Brad Allan vs Jackie Chan "Gorgeous (1999)" Great scene from this romantic action-comedy. This scene for some reason gave me "Outlaw Brothers(1990)" vibe. I guess because of the color scheme and the fact that Brad Allan reminds me of Jeff Falcon, lol. pic.twitter.com/ARrBOQ4yoa
— ѕнσgυη ѕυρяємє (@TimesSqKungFu) October 22, 2020
Brad Allan’s action design work was legendary, what a loss. So many incredible fight scenes, but The Beehive brawl in The World’s End has always been one of my favourites – a major factor in why it’s secretly my favourite Cornetto Trilogy film. Raise a glass 🍻👊🏻🐝 pic.twitter.com/P1O8gxbgHr
— Ben Travis (@BenSTravis) August 7, 2021