Since the movie's release back in 1984, The Karate Kid has become synonymous with that era of filmmaking, but would it have been so popular had the creatives behind it gone with their alternate title? During a recent interview, Karate Kid and Cobra Kai star Ralph Macchio was asked whether he approved of the eventual title, with the actor revealing that, while he was skeptical at first, it sounded like poetry when compared with the alternative.
"I thought, and I was not the only one who thought, it was kind of a hokey, kind of a cheesy title for a movie being directed by the guy who made Rocky. But maybe it was foreshadowing. Maybe I thought if I ever got the part I'd have to carry the damn thing for the rest of my life... I think John Avildsen, our director, said maybe it's East Meets West in West?"
East Meets West in West. Wow. It certainly does not have the catchy, 80s appeal of The Karate Kid, a title that tells you everything you need to know rather than fumble over itself like a new student during his first visit to the Cobra Kai dojo.
The Karate Kid was alternately titled "The Moment of Truth" in countries "where karate had a negative connotation," Macchio added. The moment of truth presumably being an illegal crane kick to the face.
Ralph Macchio, who of course recently reprised the role of the titular Karate Kid in the hugely popular series, Cobra Kai, also revealed which other actors were being courted for the leading role of Daniel Larusso. Along with the likes of Nicolas Cage and Robert Downey Jr., Macchio said that he started to get nervous that he may have lost the career-defining role after spotting Two and a Half Men star Charlie Sheen hanging around.
"I was found early. I was cast very early, but it was like one of those test deals where you're not in yet. And I remember walking by and seeing Charlie Sheen hanging outside."
Macchio's Daniel LaRusso has made a triumphant return to screens in the Netflix series Cobra Kai. Set 34 years after the first Karate Kid, Cobra Kai re-examines the narrative from Daniel's rival, Johnny Lawrence's point of view. Now a struggling alcoholic, Johnny decides to reopen the Cobra Kai karate dojo, leading to the rekindling of his old rivalry with Daniel LaRusso. Season 3 hit the streaming service at the beginning of the new year and picks up with the characters as they struggle to come to terms with the repercussions of the brawl at the high school that closed out the show's thrilling second season finale. With Miguel (Xolo Maridueña) in a coma, both Daniel LaRusso (Ralph Macchio) and Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) must reassess the extent of their own involvement in the events that put him there and try to figure out how to forge a better path forward for their students.
The drama reaches far and wide in season 3, with Robby (Tanner Buchanan) now locked up for injuring Miguel. Meanwhile Hawk (Jacob Bertrand) is once again tormented by high school bully Kyler (Joe Seo), and John Kreese (Martin Kove) tightens his stranglehold on Cobra Kai, once again instilling his students with a very questionable moral code.
Cobra Kai season 3 is available to stream now on Netflix, with a fourth season on the way. This comes to us courtesy of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.