In perhaps the most bizarre publicity stunt to emerge from China, the entrepreneur on Friday will release his short film Gongshoudao, loosely translated to "The Art of Attack and Defense," on an official English language website to mark the start of the Chinese New Year. The 20-minute short, which features Ma defeating a series of celebrity martial artists through the power of tai chi, originally launched on the Alibaba affiliate Youku last November, in honor of the international shopping event known as Singles Day.
In addition to high-stakes drama and combat, the movie includes incredible--if laughable-- one-liners from the founder, such as: "One that has a sense of justice fears nothing." Over the course of the film, Ma defeats a sumo wrestler, a weapons expert, and the retired wushu world champion Jet Li. He also takes on Donnie Yen, who you may recognize as playing the blind warrior Chirrut Imwe in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.
At the end of the film, video messages appear from celebrities including the boxer Manny Pacquiao challenging Ma to another battle--and opening up the possibility of a sequel.