Cobra Kai has gone back to the dojo for final season filming, which is of course fantastic news, but there’s also a major question that has been lingering in the air. That is, will any of the younger cast members surface in the upcoming movie edition of The Karate Kid, too? For sure, Ralph Macchio and Jackie Chan are onboard as senseis who will mentor the same martial arts up-and-coming virtuoso. Their dual (and presumably not dueling) presence will unite the 1984 and 2010 films, once and for all, to carry the spirit of the legendary Pat Morita to an even broader audience.
Who will be the new younger lead of The Karate Kid franchise? The Hollywood Reporter has revealed that Ben Wang, most recently seen in Disney+’s American Born Chinese, will fill those shoes, and interestingly enough, the outlet also reveals the film’s setting, which is a long way from The Valley:
Plot details are being kept under a bonsai tree, but the new installment will bring the story to the East Coast and focus on a teen from China who finds strength and direction via martial arts and a tough but wise mentor (or maybe even two).
Oh well. I can still hold out hope that Hawk and/or Tory will somehow end up crashing the film, but also, congrats to Ben Wang:
He won the role over at least 10,000 other hopefuls who submitted their interest (within 24 hours) to the global casting call. Wang appears to be a natural for the role:
According to studio insiders, Wang delivered a standout audition that demonstrated his deep connection to the character. It also helped that he is fluent in Mandarin and highly skilled across many forms of martial arts, including karate, wing chun/kung fu, gumdo, kempo and taekwondo.
The upcoming movie is still set for a Dec. 13, 2024 release from Sony.
(Via The Hollywood Reporter)