Cobra Kai star Ralph Macchio has revealed the craziest pitch he ever heard for a sequel to The Karate Kid, which would have been a Rocky crossover. For many years, Macchio had no interest in ever playing the role of Daniel LaRusso again since his final performance in 1989's The Karate Kid Part III. Every time someone would pitch him a sequel, Macchio's reaction was to always say no. Typically, most pitches went to the cliche idea of continuing the story with a child of LaRusso becoming the new karate kid. In an interview with Business Insider, however, Macchio shared the story of the wackiest idea he'd gotten, with the idea of revealing LaRusso and Rocky Balboa are actually related.
"Everyone would come up with the pitch of 'You have a kid, and you become the Miyagi to your kid.' Everyone thought that was the brilliant continuation. But an executive once came up to me and John Avildsen, the director of Karate Kid, and took it a step further. It was very off the cuff, but he said, 'Hey, what if Rocky Balboa and LaRusso had kids and they are related in some way?' Because Avildsen directed Rocky, so that's the connection. This guy wanted to combine Rocky and Karate Kid in some way. Taking these two major hits - this guy thought it would be a huge movie. So the concept was to go back to the Balboa and LaRusso lineage in Italy and find that we were somehow related and that our kids would now team up in some way."
Ralph Macchio didn't entertain the pitch for a moment, recognizing immediately it never would have worked. As we all know now, Macchio finally did agree upon an idea to continue The Karate Kid when Cobra Kai creators Jon Hurwitz, Josh Heald, and Hayden Schlossberg came to him with a fresh take on the franchise that still honors the story established in the original movie trilogy. By switching gears and coming in through the point of view of Johnny Lawrence, Daniel's rival, fans get to check back in with familiar characters from an entirely new perspective. Impressed with the unique idea and the passion exhibited by Hurwitz, Heald, and Schlossberg, Macchio knew it was finally time to put the white-and-black headband back on.
Cobra Kai is set in the present day, with the original movie's bully Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) now serving as the protagonist and lead character. Macchio has a recurring role on the hit YouTube Original series, reprising the role of Daniel LaRusso. Over three decades since their classic bout, the two are still at odds when Lawrence brings back the Cobra Kai dojo, with LaRusso looking to stop it from happening. The free-to-watch premiere episode has been viewed over 60 million times, turning Cobra Kai into an instant hit.
The long-awaited Season 2 of Cobra Kai is now streaming on YouTube, and like the first season, the first episode can be viewed by anyone. In just a day's time, the episode has drawn nearly five million viewers on YouTube. With the season's trailer teasing an anticipated rematch between Johnny and Daniel, there's a lot of excitement heading into Season 2. What's making the potential fight even more interesting is how many people will be rooting for Johnny this time around.
A crossover between Rocky and The Karate Kid sounds unintentionally hilarious, and while it could be entertaining, it's all for the best the project didn't happen. Its likely failure could have put a damper on Cobra Kai moving forward in the following years. Lucky for the fans, Macchio waited for the perfect time to return to the franchise. You can read more from his interview at Business Insider.