Hollywood actors

JudoInside – News – Hollywood actors trained in judo

What do the following multinational actors have in common besides acting? It’s Judo, of course. Many have benefited from learning the martial arts, and we could even say that some might not have had film careers without it.

While a large number of actors and actresses play action heroes, these actors have real judo skills and have spent many years training to become fully-fledged masters of the art.

Suppose you love action movies as much as we do? Then you will be interested to know who in the world of movies and celebrities is a judo enthusiast. Starting with some stars who have the skills and others you may not realize the “soft” practice.

Starting with Keanu Reeves.

Probably the most famous actor on this list is Keanu Reeves. It was during the making of The Matrix in 1999 that Reeves became a fan of martial arts, particularly judo. Who else but three-time Olympic champion Tadahiro Nomura trained Reeves and the result is awesome!

Reeves continued to practice Judo Throughout the next three films – The Matrix Reloaded, The Matrix Revolutions and The Matrix Four, he now sees judo as a way of life, and it is.

Chuck Norris

Norris began his martial arts journey in judo while serving as a deputy at Osan Air Base in Korea and eventually became a grandmaster. Two weeks into his training, he broke his shoulder falling on the mat, but that didn’t stop Norris from embracing judo and becoming a black belt, continuing to use his skills to coach the others. Here is a list of accomplishments.

> Alongside judo, Norris has developed his personal brand of martial arts called Chun Kuk Do and is a 10th Dan black belt

> Tang Soo Do – Grand Master – 10th Dan Black Belt

> Taekwondo – 8th Dan – Black Belt

> Karate – 5th Dan – Black Belt

> Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu – Black Belt 3rd Dan

> Jeet Kune Do – taught by Bruce Lee

John Crazy

Foo was born in Athens, Greece to a Singaporean father and an Irish/English mother. Inspired by his father’s fascination with karate and his mother’s keen interest in judo, he later trained in kung fu.

The actor specializes in mixed styles, including judo. He began his festival career with the Gangs of New York, a company of Chinese acrobats from London, signing with one of Asia’s biggest film companies alongside Jackie Chan.

Jackie Chan

Chan is primarily a martial artist and actor, as well as a stunt performer, filmmaker, action choreographer, and singer. He is known on screen for his burlesque acrobatic style, fantastic comedic timing, weapon improvisation, and innovative stunts, all performed by Chan in over 150 films.

He trained in Kung Fu, Hapkido – Black Belt, Wing Chun, Taekwondo, Shaolin Kung Fu – North and South, Judo – Black Belt, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

Guy Richie

Filmmaker and screenwriter, Ritchie, is probably best known for the film Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and also for being married to Madonna. Ritchie’s interest in martial arts began at the age of seven with Shotokan karate. But that’s not his only skill.

He was also a black belt in judo and Brazilian jiu-jitsu – brown belt

Mick Jagger

Jagger is a well-known singer, but what most people don’t realize is that he is an accomplished actor and uses judo to stay in shape. It was Jaggers’ father who introduced Jagger junior to judo.

Naomi Watts

Watts is a well-known Hollywood actress, making her debut in the 1995 science fiction film Tank Girl and the 1996 horror film Children of the Corn IV: The Gathering, and the 1998 biographical drama Dangerous Beauty.

Few people know that Watts has practiced judo for many years. She competed in amateur judo championships from 1989 to 1992. Watts trains in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu to stay in top shape.

Bruce Lee

The most famous martial artist of all time, Lee, was a judo student under legend Gene Lebell.

Lee was the founder of a hybrid martial arts philosophy drawing inspiration from different fighting disciplines called Jeet Kune Do. Often credited with paving the way for modern mixed martial arts – Lee is considered by commentators, critics and other martial artists to be the most influential martial artist all time. The list is impressive.

Ye Wen’s Wing Chun, Shaolin Boxing, Tam Tuei, Springing Leg, Jie Boxing and White Crane Boxing, Qigong and Ying Gong and Judo

Gene Lebell

Lebell was Bruce Lee’s teacher. Well-known American martial artist, judo instructor, professional wrestler and stuntman. Lebell, the actor, was born in Los Angeles, California in 1932 and has worked on over 1,000 movies and TV shows.

Called “the godfather of grappling”, Lebell is credited with popularizing “grappling” in professional fighting circles, serving as a precursor to modern mixed martial arts.

As a member of the Amateur Athletic Union, Lebell competed in the AAU National Judo Championship in 1954 and 1955. Along with more accomplishments in wrestling, he also taught his famous wrestling skills to many well known wrestlers and martial artists including Benny “The Jet” Urquidez, Chuck Norris, Bob Wall, Ed Parker, Karo Parisyan, “Rowdy” Roddy Piper, Gokor Chivichyan, Mando Guerrero, Manny Gamburyan and of course Bruce Lee.

Ronda Rousey

Rousey is an MMA movie star, but she qualifies for this list because of several small roles she’s had in action movies.

Best known for her UFC career and her judo career, here’s a look at her skills.

> Pan American Judo Champion

> Olympic Bronze Medal in Judo

> World silver medal in judo

> Former UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion

> 6th degree black belt plus a red and white belt in judo

> Train in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

There are, of course, many other famous and less famous movie and TV stars who love judo; we decided to mention the celebrities above because in one way or another they championed the sport and others because they keep the love of judo alive.