A tourist strikes a pose in front of the statue of late Hong Kong martial arts and film star Bruce Lee on the Avenue of Stars in Hong Kong. ©AFP PHOTO / DANIEL SORABJI

(HONG KONG-Relaxnews) – For a man who is arguably Hong Kong’s most famous son, it often surprises visitors just how little there is in the city to mark the legend of martial arts super star Bruce Lee. But all that might be about to change.

The city’s lawmakers have now given initial backing to a HK$24.8 million (2.4 million euro) exhibition that would commemorate Lee’s life and times — and would run for five years.

While tourists can be seen daily posing for photos next to the statue of Lee found along Hong Kong’s Avenue of Stars on the Tsim Sha Tsui waterfront, there has up until now been no other permanent place they can pay homage to the actor who is credited with taking martial arts into the mainstream.

But the exhibition — planned for the city’s Heritage Museum in Sha Tin in the first half of 2013 — will cover 650 square meters and will include displays tracing the star’s acting and martial arts careers while a 75-minute documentary charting his life and talking to those close to Lee will also be a feature, according to Hong Kong’s Leisure and Cultural Services Department.

The exhibit will also recreate the living room of Lee’s childhood home and the fitness room and study of his last residence, which was situated in Kowloon Tong.

That house — in which Lee was living until his sudden death from a brain aneurysm in 1973 at the age of 32 — was to have been made into a permanent museum but the current owner of the property, philanthropist Yu Panglin, and the Hong Kong government couldn’t come to an agreement over what it would house or how it would be developed. After years of to-ing and fro-ing, the project was shelved late last year.

“The exhibition … is not only eagerly anticipated by the people of Hong Kong, but is also expected to attract many tourists from the mainland and overseas,” the Leisure and Cultural Services Department’s proposal for the new exhibition claims.

Lee was born in San Francisco but moved to Hong Kong when he was just three months old. He later returned to the United States as a teenager but first made his mark as an actor in Hong Kong through such hits as Way of the Dragon(1972). He achieved international acclaim for the Hollywood-backed Enter the Dragon (1973).

MS