A fighter making the move to the big screen isn’t something new; just take a look at The Rock for example. Dwayne Johnson has starred in countless movies since moving on from his “wrestling” career. The gap in between acting like a wrestler and acting in a movie isn’t much of a leap, but some UFC fighters are proving they can also hold their own on the big screen. The most recent fighter to make the move to the silver screen is Lyoto Machida, who is set to star in a series reboot of The Karate Kid. Millennials might wonder WTF older people are talking about when they’re always saying “Wax on, wax off” and laughing, but the more important question is who will be delivering the classic Mr. Miyagi catchphrase?
A Star Studded Cast
Lyoto will be taking on the role of Daniel Larusso, originally played by Ralph Macchio. From Macchio to Machida, one of the brightest stars slated to participate in this upcoming film is the Anderson Silva-training, dog-shooting Sensei Steven Seagal. The On Deadly Ground star will be taking over the fitting role of Mr. Miyagi in the Karate Kid reboot. It’s a perfect role for him, not just because of his in-depth knowledge of all things martial arts, but also because he has contributed so much to the success of so many fighters around the world.
Delays, Delays, Delays
Shooting of The Karate Kid was supposed to be underway by now, but there have been so many big UFC events in the 2nd half of 2013 that that just hasn’t been possible, but not for the reasons that you might think. It wasn’t Lyoto that had to put a delay on The Karate Kid reboot to train for his fights against Phil Davis or Mark Munoz. The delays were actually due to The Sensei himself, Mr. Steven Seagal. It’s a widely known fact amongst MMA champions that they owe all of their success to Steven Seagal, and he’s been restlessly teaching them his private techniques to ensure they’re all able to hold onto their belts. Not everybody in the MMA world has nothing but love for Seagal, because you don’t get to the top without making a few enemies. Despite the incredible amount of love and respect that he gets from fans, fighters, commentators and coaches alike, there are still some folks out there that have a bone to pick.
The Rousey Connection
“Judo” Gene Lebell is a mentor to the women’s champ, Ronda Rousey, who is an Olympic medalist in Judo herself. Mr. Lebell is a legend to the sport, and looked up to by some of the world’s greatest. He has trained many of the top names in martial arts over the decades, and worked on over a thousand films. There’s no news yet that he’ll be lending a hand to The Karate Kid production, but it’s unlikely because Lebell and Seagal aren’t on great terms. There’s an old MMA campfire story about Gene Labell choking out Steven Seagal on the set of a movie back in the day, but Steven insists that it’s not true. Given his track record of honesty and integrity (And definitely not shooting people’s pet dogs) we’ve got to stick by Steven on this one. He says he taught Anderson Silva the kick that won the fight against Vitor, who are we to argue with that?
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