This American 1984 classic film is beloved millions--and for good reason. Many of us remember following the characters' journeys throughout the duration of the film, and all the different obstacles they faced along the way. But what about in real life? What has the journey of the actors that were involved in bringing this film to life been like? We're going to cover your favourite cast members from The Karate Kid, and take a look at where they are today.
The Karate Kid
The Karate Kid first made cinema history on the 22nd of June in 1984. The time had a considerably modest budget of $8 million and ended up grossing over $90 million due to the widespread praise it received at the time.
Ralph Macchio, Then
Ralph Macchio portrayed the film's main character in the original 'The Karate Kid' film. He played Daniel LaRusso, a kid bullied by his nemesis, Cora Kai and trained by Mister Miyagi in the ways of karate in order to defeat his foe.
Ralph Macchio, Now
Since starring in his career defining role back in 1984, Ralph Machio has gone on to star in The Karate Kid Part II and The Karate Kid Part III. In more recent years, he made a brief appearance as himself in How I Met Your Mother and even competed on season 12 of Dancing with the Stars.
Pat Morita, Then
You might best recognize Pat Morita by the name he went by in the film, Mister Kesuke Miyagi. Mister Miyagi is Daniel LaRusso's mentor and is a United States Army veteran in the film. He has an important role in helping Daniel defeat Cobra Kai.
Pat Morita, Now
Unfortunately, Pat Morita has since passed away. This photo from 2005, the year he died. He was 73 years old at the time and died of kidney failure. Prior to his death, he was the lead actor in both Mr. T and Tina, and Ohara.
Martin Kove, Then
In the original The Karate Kid film, Martin Kove played the role of Sensei John Kreese. John Kreese was a former special forces veteran in Vietnam and was the sensei of the antagonist dojo, Cobra Kai. In the film, he is presented as a villain due to his unethical training practices.
Martin Kove, Now
The year after The Kartate Kid came out, Martin Kove starred in his most known film, Rambo: First Blood Part II as Ericson. He would go on to star in Part II and Part III of The Karate Kid series, and has acted in various TV shows and movies since then.
Pat E. Johnson, Then
Pat E. Johnson played the referee in the first The Karate Kid film. His duties was to ensure that the battles were conducted properly, and is also involved outside of his job in the film, when he stops Daniel LaRusso from being attacked by Dutch.
Pat E. Johnson, Now
Pat E. Johnson went on to star in the first two sequels to The Karate Kid and actually practices martian arts in real life. The actor/martial arts instructor is now 78 years old, and served as a choreographer for films like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Mortal Kombat and Enter The Dragon.
Elisabeth Shue, Then
In film, Elisabeth Shue played Ali mills, who is most notable for being the love interest of Daniel LaRusso in the original film. She falls in love with him almost immediately and the two date throughout the film but break-up offscreen before the second film.
Elisabeth Shue, Now
The actress is now 53 years old, and has starred in wildly successful films like Back to the Future Part II, Back to the Future Part III, Hollow Man and The Saint. From 2012 until 2015 she starred as one of the main characters in CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.
William Zabka, Then
William Zabka played the unforgettable villain in The Karate Kid, Johnny Lawrence. Johnny Lawrence was the student of the Cobra Kai dojo--who serve as the antagonists for Daniel throughout the film. He is eventually defeated by Daniel, during one of the most heroic moments in cinema.
William Zabka, Now
Since the film's release, William Zabka has acted in a number of notable projects. He also scored an Academy Award nomination for his work co-writing the film Moist. Television watchers were reminded of his brilliance in 2013, when he guest starred in season 8, and had a recurring role in season 9 of How I Met Your Mother as himself.
Ron Thomas, Then
Ron Thomas portrayed Bobby Brown in the original The Karate Kid movie. Bobby Brown was a friend of William Zabka character, Johnny, and was a fellow member of the Cobra Kai dojo. He is the second best student and is part of Johnny's crew alongside Dutch.
Ron Thomas, Now
Ron Thomas never did quite land as many acting gigs as his co-stars after The Karate Kid was released. However, he has still been involved in various projects and starred in the 1987 film, Night Screams. Ron Thomas practices jujitsu in real life, and won the world championship in 1994.
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