Pop culture has introduced us to many wise mentor-type characters, from Yoda to Gandalf. One of the most beloved characters of that guy is Pat Morita as Mr. Miyagi, Daniel LaRusso’s karate instructor in The Karate Kid. The most emotional scene in the film is when Mr. Miyagi opens up to Daniel about the loss of his wife and son during childbirth in the Manzanar internment camp while he was serving in the 442nd Infantry Regiment during WWII. World Cup in Europe, for which he received the Medal of Honor. Rober Mark Kamen, the writer of The Karate Kid series, recently revealed to Uproxx that the studio wanted to cut the scene entirely.
“The great creative battle was keeping the scene with Mr. Miyagi drunk and talking about his ex-wife, who is going to play a very important role in the play. Columbia wanted to remove him from the film. And even though he said later Jerry Weintraub was ready to cut it. “I don’t care. It slows down the story, blah blah blah. “And I said,” This is the heart of the movie. “John Avildsen and I felt that way. I went straight to Frank and played my mentor card. I said,” Frank, please , I beg you. Try it with this. If it doesn’t work, you can remove it. “It did, and it worked. It pissed everyone off. I didn’t go through the channels.”
Thankfully, Robert Mark Kamen he won that battle, and the scene stayed in the picture. Because of that scene, Mr. Miyagi, who until then seemed like an enigmatic character whose sole purpose was to teach Daniel karate, became a flesh and blood character with his own past and his own regrets. This attention to the emotional beats of the character is what made The Karate Kid a cult classic, and it’s the same lesson as the creators of its spinoff series, Cobra Kai learned too. According to Kamen, he was surprised to see how closely the show’s creators followed the films’ mythology and interpersonal relationships.
The genius of the Cobra Kai guys is that they blatantly stole and mined these movies to fit what they wanted to do, which, looking at season three and how they got the girl Daniel saved at the watchtower during the typhoon to be the regional one. boss of whatever the car dealership was, I thought it was brilliant. He didn’t even remember that sequence. We needed something that would lead us to save Sato and Miyagi’s relationship and we needed Daniel to do something that was heroic. I just made up those things. And when we did, I looked at it, I turned to John and I said, “This is never going to fly.” And he said, “No, this is great.”
Cobra Kai stars William Zabka, Ralph Macchio, Courtney Henggeler, Xolo Maridueña, Mary Mouser, Tanner Buchanan, Jacob Bertrand, Gianni DeCenzo, Peyton List, and Martin Kove. All three seasons are available to stream on Netflix. This story originated in Uproxx.
Topics: Karate Kid, Cobra Kai