Dan Inosanto

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Dan Inosanto
Born (1936-07-24) July 24, 1936 (age 78)
Stockton, California, United States
Occupation Martial arts Instructor, Actor
Spouse(s) Paula Inosanto, former wife Sue Inosanto
Children Diana Lee Inosanto, Lance Arca Inosanto and Danielle Inosanto
Parent(s) Sebastian Inosanto, Mary Arca Inosanto

Daniel Arca Inosanto (born July 24, 1936) is a Filipino-American martial arts instructor from California who is best known as a student of Bruce Lee and renowned authority on Jeet Kune Do, Filipino Martial Arts including Eskrima and Silat.[1]

Martial arts[edit]

Dan Inosanto teaches The Art and Philosophy of Jeet Kune Do, Filipino Martial Arts, Shoot wrestling, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, Eskrima, Muay Thai, Silat, mixed martial arts and other arts at his Marina del Rey, California school, the Inosanto Academy of Martial Arts. He was a student of Ed Parker whom he also received a shodan from and practiced his sport in American Kenpo Karate before becoming a student of world famous martial artist Bruce Lee.[2] Inosanto is one of three people who have been appointed to teach at one of the 3 Jun Fan Gung Fu Institutes under Bruce Lee (Taky Kimura and James Yimm Lee being the other two), Inosanto also studied with dozens of different martial arts masters elsewhere in the United States, Southeast Asia, and Europe, including Johnny Lacoste, and Chai Sirisute.[3] After Bruce Lee's death, he has become the principal spokesperson and historian for Jeet Kune Do.[1] He has had minor roles in a number of movies, including Bruce Lee's uncompleted last film Game of Death (1972). During this time period (1964–75), he also taught physical education at Malaga Cove Intermediate School in Palos Verdes Estates, California.

Although disputed by some members in the JKD community, Inosanto is authorized by Bruce Lee to teach his system of martial arts. The film I Am Bruce Lee provided Inosanto an opportunity to reveal a little-known fact about the friendship the two men shared. Inosanto was teacher to Bruce Lee, introducing him to nunchaku. Inosanto explained that he introduced the weapon to Lee, taught him the basics and some exercises to get him started on his weapons training. Before he knew it, Lee had mastered the weapon "as if he had been doing it his whole life". The Game of Death movie, one of the most recognizable of the Bruce Lee films, showcases the extraordinary skill Lee exhibited in his manipulation and use of the nunchaku. The credit for nunchaku's introduction to Lee in the first place belongs to Inosanto. He is featured as the Black Belt Magazine's 1996 "Man of the Year".

Always a student himself, he continues to train with many highly regarded martial artists. Consequently, he holds Instructor or black belt level ranks in numerous, different martial arts. In addition, he is well known for promoting the Filipino Martial Arts. He is responsible for bringing several obscure forms of the South East Asia Martial Arts into the public eye such as Silat, a hybrid combative form existing in such countries as Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Philippines.[citation needed] He has recently acquired his black belt in the Machado family style of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. He trained Shoot wrestling under Yorinaga Nakamura. Currently he is the vice-president of Lameco International, carrying on the Eskrima of the late Filipino martial artist Edgar Sulite.

Notable students[edit]

Dan Inosanto's notable students include:




Full Filmography for Dan Inosanto at the Internet Movie Database



  • I Am Bruce Lee (2012)
  • Fight Science (2006)
  • Modern Warriors (2002)
  • Bruce Lee: The Immortal Dragon (2002)
  • Bruce Lee in G.O.D.: Shibôteki yûgi (2000)
  • Bruce Lee: A Warrior's Journey (2000)
  • Famous Families (1999) (The Lees: Action Speaks Louder)
  • The Path of the Dragon (1998)
  • E! True Hollywood Story (Brandon Lee) (1997)
  • Curse of the Dragon (1993)
  • Bruce Lee, the Legend (1977)
  • The Warrior Within (1976)
  • Life and Legend of Bruce Lee (1973)


Further reading[edit]

  • Kelly, Perry (2000). Dan Inosanto: The Man, The Teacher, The Artist. Paladin Press. ISBN 978-1-58160-079-7. 
  • Balicki, Ron. Gold, Steven (2007). Jeet Kune Do: The Principles of a Complete Fighter, HNL Publishing. ISBN 9-531766-3-0
  • Seaman, Kevin (1999), Jun Fan Gung Fu Seeking The Path Of Jeet Kune Do, S.l.: Health 'N' Life, ISBN 0-9531766-2-2


  • Dan Inosanto's Martial Arts Lineage Tree
  1. ^ a b Kelly 2000, pp. 46–50
  2. ^ Kelly 2000, p. 24.
  3. ^ Kelly 2000, p. 31.
  4. ^ a b c d Kelly 2000, p. 130
  5. ^ a b Kelly 2000, p. 109
  6. ^ http://video.about.com/movies/Book-of-Eli-Denzel-Washington.htm
  7. ^ Kelly 2000, p. 51.
  8. ^ a b Kelly 2000, p. 133
  9. ^ Video on YouTube
  10. ^ April 2008 Black Belt magazine cover story
  11. ^ Imada, Jeff (1984), The Balisong Manual, California: Unique Publications, p. 130, ISBN 0-86568-102-3 
  12. ^ "Jeff Imada". IMDb. Retrieved 15 March 2015. 
  13. ^ Beasley, Jerry (2001), Jeet Kune Do Experience: Understanding Bruce Lee's Ultimate Martial Art, Paladin Press, p. 216, ISBN 1-58160-131-X 
  14. ^ "Damon Caro". IMDb. Retrieved 15 March 2015. 
  15. ^ Kelly 2000, p. 131.
  16. ^ Combs, Roger (2004), "Emerson Knives", Knives Illustrated 18 (2): 36–41, 65–69 
  17. ^ Kelly 2000, p. 145.
  18. ^ "thejkdbrotherhood.com". Retrieved 15 March 2015. 
  19. ^ http://www.appliedsportsmartialarts.com
  20. ^ "Untitled Document". Retrieved 15 March 2015. 
  21. ^ Seaman, Kevin (2011), Jun Fan Gung Fu Seeking The Path Of Jeet Kune Do, New York: Center Line Press, p. 180, ISBN 978-0-9839214-0-0 
  22. ^ Grahn, Andy (2008), "Greg Nelson: Ultimate Fighter", MMA Writer (inosanto.com) 

External links[edit]