Jason Statham is, without a doubt, a movie star. Known for his role in the ‘El Transportador’ saga, the actor has a huge billboard of action movies to his credit. However, his career could have been different, and martial arts had a lot to do with it. Read on for this incredible story!
Jason Statham is one of the favorite actors in the world of action movies, and he has what to justify, since he trains a lot and has practiced various styles of martial arts. The 55-year-old Briton holds a purple belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu under Renzo Gracie’s academy, but he has also dabbled in Wing Chun, karate, kickboxing, taekwondo, Muay Thai and Krav Maga.
His film career and martial arts have always gone hand in hand. For example, the actor admitted on more than one occasion that Bruce Lee was a great inspiration when interpreting a character, and that he considered him a hero.
Contact sports, in fact, led his profession: ‘Games, Traps and Two Smoking Guns’, from 1998, is the first film directed by Guy Ritchie and, in turn, Jason Statham’s first appearance on the big screen.
From there, the British formed a great friendship, working on more productions together and even sharing a hobby: Brazilian jiu-jitsu. Yes, the director and movie star began practicing the discipline together about 20 years ago and are still learning today, Statham being a purple belt and Ritchie a black belt.
Despite how important martial arts were in his development, in a 2013 interview to promote his movie ‘Parker’, Statham confessed that they almost made him change careers: In the note, the actor stated that his true desire was to be stunt double, that person in charge of performing dangerous tricks or stunts, which are then used for particular scenes in film or television.
The reason, says Jason himself, is that he had a great athletic background from his high school years, which included different sports and styles of martial arts, and that while some went to drama school, he “was learning how to it’s a fight and other things”. Finally, his course did not change, and today we can enjoy his physical roles, full of acrobatics and combat:
“In action movies I feel like I know what I’m doing, I’m more passionate about them,” Statham said.
Thus, his privileged physique and martial arts became pillars for the actor to stand out in every action movie and shape the tough guy fame he has today. Luckily he chose the right path, what a success!