Crime drama inspired by idea from Bruce Lee.

Justin Lin

Cinemax has picked up the 10-episode straight-to-series drama Warrior.

Warrior is produced for Cinemax by Perfect Storm Entertainment, Tropper Ink Productions and Bruce Lee Entertainment.

Warrior is set during the brutal Tong Wars of San Francisco’s Chinatown in the second half of the 19th century. The series centres on Ah Sahm, a martial arts prodigy who immigrates from China to San Francisco under mysterious circumstances, and becomes a hatchet man for one of Chinatown’s most powerful organised crime families.

Production will commence this autumn in Cape Town, South Africa.

The show is inspired by an idea from Bruce Lee and created by Jonathan Tropper via his Tropper Ink Productions. 

Justin Lin and Danielle Woodrow will serve as executive producers for Perfect Storm Entertainment, alongside Bruce Lee Entertainment’s Shannon Lee, and Tropper.

Warrior follows in the spirit of the tradition of adrenalised Cinemax dramas that we established with Strike Back and Banshee,” Kary Antholis, president of HBO miniseries and Cinemax programming, said. “We are brimming with excitement for this unique martial arts series combining Bruce Lee’s inspired conception with the immense storytelling talents of Jonathan Tropper and Justin Lin.”

Tropper added: “As a show that proudly bears the imprimatur of Bruce Lee, it’s our intention to deliver not only explosive martial arts action – which we will – but also a powerful and complex immigration drama that is as relevant today as it was in the 1870s.”

Lin said: “I’ve always admired Bruce Lee for his trailblazing efforts opening doors for Asians in entertainment and beyond. So I was intrigued when Danielle told me about the urban legend of his never-produced idea for a TV show and suggested we bring it to life. Then, when Shannon shared with us her father’s writings – rich with Lee’s unique philosophies on life, and through a point of view rarely depicted on screen – Danielle and I knew that Perfect Storm had to make it.

“Partnering with Cinemax has led to a wonderful collaboration with Jonathan Tropper, who has created a fantastic series inspired by Lee’s writings. We are all honored to continue what he started,” he added.