According to Variety, Jaden Smith, son of Will, is set to star as the next crane-kicking Karate Kid, confirming rumors that have swirled since September. The movie will be produced by Overbrook Entertainment, Smith’s production shingle. No director has been named, but Chris Murphy is penning the script.
This “Karate Kid” will be decidedly more exotic. Rather than being set in sunny California, the film will be shot in Beijing and other foreign cities.
It’s not clear what an American kid is doing in China, but I’m sure there’s a reason other than the cool architecture. Otherwise, the story will borrow from the original, where a bullied kid meets a wise mentor, who teaches him to stand up for himself using martial arts. The younger Smith is already a practitioner of martial arts, so he’ll be able to truly kick some Cobra Kai butt.
While it’s certainly the coolest role a kid like Smith could land, it feels very weird and wrong to remake this. The original is downright iconic, and such a product of the 80s, when everything Asian was cool and new. Karate was all we thought of back then (that and how amazing neon was), and I’m sure more than one of you shattered an ankle trying to do a crane kick off a chair. Still, everything that is old is new again, but I feel like checking into a nursing home already.
Does the news of a “Karate Kid” remake bother you, MTV readers? Or do you think Jaden Smith should take Ralph Macchio to the mat, and make it his own?