The Big Brawl, (Chinese: 殺手壕) also known as Battle Creek Brawl, is a 1980 martial arts film which marked Jackie Chan's first attempt to break into the American movie market. It was directed by Robert Clouse and featured much of the crew from Enter the Dragon.
The Big Brawl was a flop and led to Chan being advised to try supporting roles such as the Japanese racing car driver in Cannonball Run. Chan later made another attempt to break into the American market with 1985's The Protector, which suffered the same fate as this film. It wasn't until 1995 with Rumble in the Bronx that Chan was able to bring his signature humor mixed with impressive stunt-work to American audiences.
Set in Chicago in the 1930s, Jackie Chan's character, Jerry Kwan leads a very easy-going life with his girlfriend, Nancy (Kristine DeBell), and his family. His father owns a restaurant, and one day, he is threatened by the mob to pay a part of his profits. As the mob exits, Jackie enters the scene and rushes out the door to catch up with them. He answers back by taking them on and eventually catches the eye of the mob for his unique and talented fighting abilities. In effect, he is forced to join the Battle Creek Brawl fight in Texas. The mob promises to return his brother's fiancèe and give him the prize money as long as Jackie wins the tournament. Jackie gets help from a kung-fu teacher and uncle who trains for the Battle Creek Brawl. They focus on Jackie's speed and agility as he must fight very tough opponents, one of them including Billy Kiss, the big, bulky, unbeatable winner from previous battles who kisses his opponents after they are defeated.
The Big Brawl opened on August 29, 1980 on 231 North American screens. In its opening weekend, it grossed US $1,108,025 ($4,792 per screen), and ended its run with US $8,527,743. Its box office performance was less disastrous than reputed to be, but was a disappointment to distributor Warner Brothers and Jackie Chan, who were expecting an Enter the Dragon-sized hit