The first two Ip Man films were cult like classics that expanded beyond it's martial arts genre into the watch list of fans of time pieces and general underdog story narratives. Donnie Yen who starred in the two original films had become disenfranchised with the idea of further continuing to work on I.P. Man films after the success of his films spawned a bunch of low budget spinoffs which were not of the same caliber as the films he had worked on. It seemed that at the end of Ip Man 2 they had closed the chapter on the man's life by giving us a run down of what the rest of his life entailed and even the circumstances of his death. When Ip Man 3 was first announced many of us fans were left scratching our heads which was only made worse by the fact that leaked details of the film showed the introduction of gimmicks to sell tickets. First it was the CGI version of Ip man's real life student and best known martial artist ever Bruce Lee, this has since resulted in lawsuits and litigation by the Lee estate over who has a rights to Bruce's image. As if that wasn't bad enough we then got word that former heavyweight champion of the world Mike Tyson will also be making an appearance and taking part in a fight scene with Yen, Tyson will be playing some sort of real estate developer who somehow gets sucked into the tensions of China's disdain for outsiders (both Ip Man films addressed this).
As much as I love Donnie Yen's body of work I can't understand why he would want to be part of this project, he recently turned down quite a few roles in big budget American films that would've helped him cross over and replace the now vacated positions left by both Jackie Chan and Jet Li (the latter due to a crippling illness). Some have speculated that this film will then span off into another franchise based on Ip's two sons who were part of the story in both films, both of which went on to be teachers of Wing Chun for decades following their fathers passing. Will this be any good? We won't know until the film finally sees the light of day but the attention they are trying to put into the filming of it in 3D indicates that fans of the first two films will end up critiquing it heavily. Wilson Yip is a fantastic Director but not so great that he can't deliver a dud, he has in the past and it's hard to see how this new film will not fall into the forgettable bin.