The Karate Kid Cast Then And Now – Released in 1984, ‘The Karate Kid’ tells the story of a young Daniel LaRusso, a teenager who moves to California with his mother. After moving he soon finds himself at the mercy of school bullies, thankfully his neighbour Mr. Miyagi is able to help Daniel defend himself though the use of Karate. We take a look at what the cast are up to today, over 30 years since the release of the movie.
The Karate Kid Cast Then And Now
Ralph Macchio, Daniel LaRusso
Then: It was Charlie Sheen who was first offered the part of Daniel LaRusso, which eventually went to Ralph Macchio. Ralph who played a teenager in the movie was actually 22 years old at the time of filming. Before filming The Karate Kid, Macchio had roles in movies such as ‘The Outsiders’ and ‘Up The Academy’.
Now: Ralph Macchio went on to play The Karate Kid in two more squeals and has had a steady acting career ever since. More recently you may have seen him in Entourage, Ugly Betty, Hitchcock and How I Met Your Mother.
Elisabeth Shue, Ali Mills
Then: Elisabeth was barely known when she got her lucky break as Ali Mills, the love interest of Daniel LaRusso.
Now: Elisabeth didn’t appear in any of The Karate Kid squeals, however, at the end of the 1980’s she got roles in Back To The Future II & III. In the 1990’s she was nominated for an Academy Award for her role in ‘Leaving Las Vegas’. Nowadays she is better known for her part as Julie Finlay in the incredibly popular CSI.
Martin Kove, John Kreese
Then: Martin Kove had worked as an actor for over a decade, doing mainly TV movies, before he landed the role of John Kreese.
Now: During the 1980’s Martin Kove returned for the two Karate Kid sequels and also had a part in Rambo II. He has worked steadily ever since, generally appearing in horror and action B-movies.
William Zabka, Johnny Lawrence
Then: William Zabka made his movie debut in The Karate Kid, he played the role of Johnny Lawrence, lead member of the Cobra Kai.
Now: Zabka continues to act today, he’s also known for writing, directing and producing. In 2004 he earned an Academy Award nomination for writing and producing the film ‘Most’. More recently he has appeared as himself in ‘How I Met Your Mother’ and ‘Hot Tub Time Machine’.
Ron Thomas, Bobby Brown
Then: Ron Thomas got his first major role in ‘The Karate Kid’, he played a prominent member of the Cobra Kai.
Now: Thomas retired from acting in 1987, he is a real-life sixth-degree black belt and two-time Karate world champion. Nowadays he spends his time as a motivational speaker, training athletes and businessmen how to increase their “self-mastery”.
Chad McQueen, Dutch
Then: Chad McQueen is the son of acting legend Steve McQueen, he played the role of Dutch, a member of the Kobra Kai.
Now: McQueen had a steady acting career throughout the 80’s and 90’s, but hasn’t done any acting since 2001. He has also had a steady racing career, racing in many different events. In 2010 he started his own custom car company called McQueen Racing LLC.
Rob Garrison, Tommy
Then: Rob Garrison had worked in a few movies prior to being cast Tommy, a member of the Cobra Kai. It is probably fair to say he had the greatest line in the entire movie, you will almost certainly remember the line ‘get him a body bag’!
Now: Garrison retired from acting in 1991, however he made a return in 2011 with a role in the movie ‘The Pledge’.
Randee Heller, Lucille LaRusso
Then: Prior to her role as Daniel LaRusso’s mother, Randee Heller played various TV roles.
Now: Heller has had a very successful TV career, recently appearing in Desperate Housewives, Modern Family and Mad Men.