Karate Kid remake?

20 Feb

The American actor, Will Smith, was in Tokyo recently to promote his new movie.

It’s always fun to watch his interviews when he comes to Japan. Unlike most Hollywood celebreties, Will Smith behaves in a way that fits in here. Not to say that other actors from overseas carry themselves wrong…but Will Smith remembers the names and interests of the Japanese celebreties that he has met here and always acts pleased to see them. He even treats his interpretor that way.

And he’s quite funny in his interviews.

I was surprised to learn, though, that Will Smith‘s son, Jaden, will co-star in a remake of the classic 1984 movie 「ベスト・キッド」 (The Karate Kid)!

Karate Kid Japanese movie flyer

Karate Kid Japanese movie flyer

The Karate Kid” is called 「ベスト・キッド」 (Best Kid) in Japan, by the way.

More surprising than the news that 「ベスト・キッド」 (The Karate Kid) is being remade and that Will Smith‘s son will play the part that Ralph Macchio played in the original is the news that popular Hong-Kong actor Jackie Chan will play the part of “Mr. Miyagi“, made famous by Noriyuki “Pat” MoritaI*…and that filming for the movie will take place in 北京 (Beijing, China)!

Noriyuki "Pat" Morita as "Mr. Miyagi".

Noriyuki "Pat" Morita as "Mr. Miyagi".

*(Noriyuki “Pat” Morita, June 1932 – November 2005, RIP).

空手 (Karate) is Japanese, 宮城さん (Mr. Miyagi) is a Japanese name…so, no disrespect to Jackie Chan, but why would they choose a Chinese actor and a Chinese city for this movie?

Noriyuki “Pat” Morita was great in the 「ベスト・キッド」 (The Karate Kid) movies! The way he watched Daniel-san get into trouble and help him without Daniel even realizing it was quite Japanese. Do you remember the scene when Daniel trashed his broken bicycle in a fit…and the next day found it repaired anonymously? And, of course, “Wax on, wax off“!

It’s a great movie! I’m not sure if a remake will do it justice.

————————update 2010 January 29———————————–

It’s seems that the new The Karate Kid movie will be in theaters in America on 2010 June 11 (no word yet of the Japan release date).

It seems that this movie was going to be titled “The Kung Fu Kid“…but I guess they decided to stick with name-recognition and call it “The Karate Kid” even though it takes place in China and the boy learns Kung-Fu.

The explanation for the title is that the boy had learned a bit of karate in America…but it does him no good in China. So he needs to learn Kung-Fu (from Jackie Chan’s character).

I watched the official trailer. I noticed many differences between the Japanese style teacher-student relationship and the Chinese style.

Instead of a remake of The Karate Kid in China…I think they should have made a movie version of the old American TV show “Kung Fu” that starred David Carradine.

Anyways here’s the official trailer for the upcoming 2010 version of “The Karate Kid“:

27 Responses to “Karate Kid remake?”

  1. Fort Collins November 7, 2010 at 8:15 pm #

    My son watched this movie. He loved it. I haven’t had the chance but, I will watch it soon.


    • tokyo5 November 7, 2010 at 9:48 pm #

      As I wrote in this comment in another post about this movie, my daughter and I both liked this movie too…but we both liked the original better.


  2. tokyo5 June 27, 2010 at 2:06 am #

    The date that this movie will hit theaters in Japan has been announced.

    Click here to read my new post about it.


  3. David B June 14, 2010 at 2:24 am #

    “The Kung-Fu Kid”, that title would make more sense but unfortunately they’re call it “The Karate Kid”. What a shame…..


    • tokyo5 June 14, 2010 at 2:30 am #

      Have you watched the remake? How did you like it?

      “Karate Kid” was one of my favorite movies growing up.
      I introduced all of the classic ’80s movies to my kids…”E.T.”, “Goonies”, “Indy Jones”, “Back To The Future”, etc.
      They loved all of them…but their favorite is “The Karate Kid”.

      So we’re wondering how this remake will turn out?


  4. satrain18 March 6, 2010 at 3:17 am #

    Here’s my list of five Japanese actors that would’ve played the part of Mr. Miyagi:
    1)Sonny Chiba
    2)Ken Watanabe
    3)Hiroyuki Sanada
    4)Ken Takakura
    5)George Takei


    • tokyo5 March 6, 2010 at 11:44 am #

      Those are all good choices.

      But I guess they wanted the remake to be set in China.


  5. tokyo5 January 30, 2010 at 12:28 am #

    I just updated this post with more information and a video of the official new movie’s trailer.

    So please re-read this post.


  6. Killeen Karate October 19, 2009 at 9:10 am #

    Whooaaa… Can’t wait to see this movie. I love Will Smith, a natural down to earth actor.. Thanks for sharing.


    • tokyo5 October 20, 2009 at 12:13 am #

      >Will Smith, a natural down to earth actor

      Will Smith won’t be acting in this movie. He’ll be the director and his son will act in it.

      Also, I heard that this movie may be titled “The Kung-Fu Kid” since it’s to be filmed in China and it’ll be “inspired by ‘The Karate Kid'” rather than a re-make.

      It’s scheduled to be released sometime in 2010.


  7. tokyo5 February 21, 2009 at 11:02 pm #

    You can now click on “Reply” on other people’s comments on this blog and nested a reply under their comment (up to two “replies” per comment).


  8. Tornadoes28 February 21, 2009 at 10:07 pm #

    I think Will Smith is just a really honest, hardworking, good guy.

    I agree about the choise for Mr. Miyagi. Jackie Chan makes no sense.


    • tokyo5 February 21, 2009 at 10:46 pm #

      >Jackie Chan makes no sense.

      Well, for whatever reason, they decided to change the story to a Chinese martial arts expert.


  9. Eric February 21, 2009 at 7:15 pm #

    I still don’t think they should call it Karate Kid.


    • tokyo5 February 21, 2009 at 10:47 pm #

      I think they shouldn’t remake it all. It’s a classic.

      But since they’re doing it, I wish it stayed true to the original story.


  10. tokyo5 February 21, 2009 at 6:01 pm #

    I just looked at MTV’s movie blog site.

    They asked Ralph Macchio about the Karate Kid remake…he gave a diplomatic answer, but seemed disappointed about it.

    It’s here:

    That article has links to related articles…one of which explains why they cast a Chinese actor for the role that Pat Morita played in the original…and why it’ll be filmed in China.

    The article says that they decided to change the story from a Japanese Karate sensei to a Chinese one (so Jackie Chan won’t be playing a Japanese character).

    When the interviewer pointed out that Karate is Japanese, they responded that it was originally Chinese.

    That’s true. The original martial art (called Kenpo in Chinese) was imported to Okinawa (Mr. Miyagi was Okinawan in the ’80s Karate Kid movies)…and was changed slightly and called 「空手」 (Karate).


  11. tokyo5 February 21, 2009 at 2:48 pm #


    (Re: This comment of yours:
    https://tokyo5.wordpress.com/2009/02/20/karate-kid-remake/#comment-1753 )

    Yeah, Sonny Chiba‘s a good choice, too.
    But whoever plays Mr. Miyagi should be Japanese. And the location should be California like the original.


  12. Eric February 21, 2009 at 10:22 am #

    Oh and Will Smith is hilarious on the Japanese variety shows. He was especially good last time he visited on the Tamori afternoon show.


    • tokyo5 February 21, 2009 at 10:52 pm #

      The 「笑っていいとも」 show. Yes, he’s been on that show a few times. I saw him on it this recent time too. He was very funny.

      BTW, did you know that Tamori-san’s real last name is Morita (same as the original Mr. Miyagi actor’s name).
      Mori-ta reversed is Ta-mori.


  13. Eric February 21, 2009 at 10:14 am #

    Karate Kid 1 and 2 are a couple of my favorite movies. I think it’s bad they’re remaking them. Plus how can Jackie Chan teach Karate. Maybe they’ll call it Kung Fu Kid. That would be OK then.

    My favorite part was in Karate Kid 2 when Daniel asked Mr Miyagi if he could karate chop a log in half and he replied “Don’t know, never been attacked by tree.” Classic!


    • tokyo5 February 21, 2009 at 10:50 pm #

      >Karate Kid 1 and 2 are a couple of my favorite movies.

      Yeah, they’re excellent.

      >how can Jackie Chan teach Karate. Maybe they’ll call it Kung Fu Kid.

      That’s what I’m saying! I really wanna know why they didn’t choose a Japanese sensei and a Japanese location!

      I think someone like Ken Watanabe or Ken Takakura would be a better choice…no offense to Jackie Chan.

      >My favorite part was…“Don’t know, never been attacked by tree.”

      I liked when the drunk guys had their beer bottles on his car and were giving Mr. Miyagi a hard time…and he karate chopped them in half. Daniel-san asked him how he did it…he said: “Don’t know. First time.”

      And of course, when Daniel was tired of painting the fence and washing the car and walked away quitting…Mr. Miyagi yelled: “Daniel-san! Show me Paint the fence!“.


      • Eric February 21, 2009 at 10:56 pm #

        I think they should have gotten Sonny Chiba as the new Mr. Miyagi.

        That part with the bottles was bad ass.


    • tokyo5 October 20, 2009 at 12:18 am #

      >Maybe they’ll call it Kung Fu Kid. That would be OK then.

      As I just mentioned in a comment below (click here), I heard that this new movie may in fact be titled “The King-Fu Kid“.


  14. Sir Pent February 21, 2009 at 2:43 am #

    I love those songs too. I think they are considered more of an offshoot of rap.


    • tokyo5 February 21, 2009 at 10:49 pm #

      >an offshoot of rap.

      I see. Then I guess I don’t like regular rap music.


  15. tokyo5 February 20, 2009 at 11:27 pm #

    Sir Pent…

    >I had read about the remake.

    What do you think about it?

    >I love Will Smith.

    Will Smith has a very good image in Japan because he almost acts like a Japanese celebrity (at least when he’s here he does…I don’t know how he acts when he visits other countries).

    Aside from the way he behaves…he also remembers the names of the people he meets here and shows (what appears to be, at least) a genuine interest in them. And he’s picked up a few Japanese words and phrases…including the Japanese titles of his movies.

    >not sure how you feel about rap music. I love it.

    I like these songs:
    Sabotage” by The Beastie Boys, and
    Break Stuff” by Limp Bizkit.

    Is that rap?


  16. Sir Pent February 20, 2009 at 10:55 pm #

    I had read about the remake. I love Will Smith. Both as an actor AND as a rapper. (T5…not sure how you feel about rap music. I love it.)

    Also, completely unrelated…
    Our new song Poster Child was feature on a big UK podcast:
    http://m.podshow.com/media/1208/episodes /144170/darkcompass-144170-02-19-2009.mp 3


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