Cynthia Rothrock

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Cynthia Rothrock
Cynthia Rothrock 2010.jpg
Rothrock in 2010
Born Cynthia Ann Christine Rothrock
(1957-03-08) 8 March 1957 (age 57)
Wilmington, Delaware
Occupation Film actress
Martial arts instructor
Years active 1985–2004: 2011–present
Cynthia Rothrock
Rank      7th Degree Black Belt in Tang Soo Do
     Black Belt in Taekwondo
     Black belt in Karate
     Black Belt in Eagle Claw
     Black Belt in Wu Shu
     Black Belt in Northern Shaolin
     Black Belt in Pai Lum Tao Kung Fu

Cynthia Rothrock (born March 8, 1957) is an American martial artist and actress specializing in martial arts films.[1][2] She was credited as 羅芙洛 ("Fu Lok, Law" or "Foo Lok, Law") in many Hong Kong movies.[3]

Martial arts achievements[edit]

Rothrock is five-time World Karate Champion in forms and weapons between 1981 and 1985.[4] These categories are not combat-oriented, being displays of fluidity of movement rather than fighting, and are therefore not segregated into male and female categories but fully open to both sexes.[5]

She holds six Black belts in various Far Eastern martial disciplines, including Tang Soo Do (also "tangsudo", Korean), Tae Kwon Do (Korean), Eagle Claw (Chinese), Wu Shu (contemporary Chinese), Northern Shaolin (classical Chinese), and Pai Lum Tao Kung Fu (contemporary Chinese). She received her 6th degree black belt in Tang Soo Do Moo Duk Kwan in 2006. She was tested by Grand Master Robert Kovaleski, 7th Dan and chair of the I.T.M.A., and was promoted to 7th degree black belt by Kovaleski in 2011.[6] She also works as a martial arts instructor; her favorite weapons are the hook swords.[7]

Film career[edit]


Northern California was her home in 1983 where she worked with the West Coast Demonstration Team. At this time Golden Harvest was searching in Los Angeles for the next Bruce Lee. Rothrock's forms and maneuvers were observed and Golden Harvest signed a contract with her. It was two years (1985) later that she made her first martial arts movie for them, Yes, Madam (also known as Police Assassins or In the Line of Duty Part 2) which also starred Michelle Yeoh. It proved to be a box office success. She ended up staying in Hong Kong until 1988 doing seven films there.[8]

Rothrock became one of the few western performers to achieve genuine stardom in the local Hong Kong film industry before achieving success in their own country. Producer Pierre David initiated Rothrock's move to the American turf. David offered her a costarring role with Chad McQueen in Martial Law, Rothrock's first U.S. production. For the next ten years she led a successful career in B-grade action movies. Her films include China O'Brien and China O'Brien 2, Guardian Angel, Honor & Glory, No Retreat, No Surrender 2 and Prince of the Sun amongst a roster of thirty films.

Rothrock also appeared as Bertha Jo in the 1997 television film The Dukes of Hazzard: Reunion. She was an inspiration for the video game character Sonya Blade[9] from the Mortal Kombat series and lent her voice on the animated series Eek the Cat.

She also made an appearance in the television series Hercules: The Legendary Journeys, playing as Hera's second Enforcer in the episode 'Not Fade Away' in 1996.

Retired from acting[edit]

Rothrock's final movie was the 2004 film Xtreme Fighter (aka Sci-Fighter) where she played Sally Kirk / The White Dragon.

After Xtreme Fighter, Rothrock retired from acting at the age of 47, and teaches private martial arts lessons at her martial arts studio in Studio City, California.

Rothrock returned to acting in 2012 with a role in the family film Santa's Summer House,.[10]

In 2014, she starred to the action movie Mercenaries, alongside Kristanna Loken, Brigitte Nielsen, Vivica A. Fox and Zoë Bell.

Personal life[edit]

Cynthia Rothrock at the young age of 21 married her kung fu instructor Ernest Rothrock. She has one daughter Skylar Sophia Rothrock. She currently works as a martial arts teacher,[11] co-owning a martial arts studio in Studio City, California as part of the United Studios of Self Defense chain of martial arts studios.[12]




  • Femme Fatales, Volume 4, Number 1, Summer 1995, ISSN 1062-3906, by Frederick C. Szebin, pp. 16–27, 61
  • Black Belt, November 1978, page 48.

External links[edit]