Gary Daniels

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Gary Daniels
Born Gary Edward Daniels
(1963-05-09) 9 May 1963 (age 51)
London, England, UK
Other names Danger Man
Nationality England English
Height 5 ft 10 in (1.79 m)
Weight 12 st 9 lb (80 kg)
Division Middleweight
Light Heavyweight
Style Kickboxing, Muay Thai, Taekwondo
Stance Southpaw
Fighting out of London, England
Team The Jet Center
Piston Kickboxing Gym
Team Daniels
Trainer Mickey Byrne
Yuki Horiuchi
Rank      2nd degree black belt in Taekwondo
Years active 1979-1993, 2008
Kickboxing record
Total 41
Wins 35
By knockout 34
Losses 5
Draws 0
No contests 1
Other information
Occupation Actor
Spouse Mericine
Children 5

Gary Edward Daniels (born 9 May 1963) is a British actor and retired kickboxer who scored 34 knockout victories, and a former World Light-heavyweight Kickboxing Champion (P.K.A.); known for appearing in action-oriented martial arts B-films.[1] Daniels has performed in over 50 films since his start as an extra in an episode of the 1980s television series Miami Vice. He is best known for playing Kenshiro in the live-action version of Fist of the North Star. He is also known for his roles in the Jackie Chan film City Hunter, and as Bryan Fury in the 2010 live-action film Tekken, based upon the popular fighting game series. He was also seen in the Sylvester Stallone film The Expendables as Lawrence "The Brit" Sparks, an ally of the villain James Munroe.[2]

Early life[edit]

Gary Daniels was born in London, England, on May 9, 1963. Inspired by the Bruce Lee film Enter the Dragon, Daniels began training in martial arts at the age of 8 at a local school where he learned a hybrid martial art known as "Mongolian Kung Fu" that combined wing chun, boxing, Mongolian Wrestling and Wushu, that was found in late 1960's. He then took up taekwondo at 12 years old and received his black belt after 3 years. At 16, he became a 2nd dan and began competing in ITF taekwondo tournaments. His aggressive style did not sit well with British officials, however, and he lost 3 fights by disqualification.[3] Daniels also trains kickboxing, muay thai and wing chun.

Kickboxing career[edit]

Daniels began kickboxing at the age of seventeen under the tutelage of former British Army boxing champion Mickey Byrne. He debuted in 1979, and compiled a record of 13 victories (13 knockouts) and 3 defeats; including two matches with Jean-Claude Van Damme opponent, Michael J. Heming.[4]

In 1980, Daniels decided to leave England and move to the state of Florida in the United States to continue his career.

In his first United States match, Daniels defeated Sherman "Big Train" Bergman (The only kickboxer to have knocked down Jean-Claude Van Damme),[5] by decision at the Sunshine State Tournament in Coconut Grove, Florida.[3][5][6][7] However, in the quarter-finals of the tournament, Daniels was eliminated after he lost a 3-round decision.(Source, Miami Herald, March 7, 1980, Sports Section)

He rebounded with an 18-second knockout of Tim "Night Life" Williams at a WKBA event in Orlando, Florida before going on a barnstorming tour fighting in Texas, California and Florida.[1]

In the late 1980s, Daniels moved to California and began practicing Muay Thai at Benny Urquidez's Jet Center and Yuki Horiuchi's Piston Kickboxing Gym.

In November 1990, Daniels won the WKBA California State Light Heavyweight Championship and the PKA World Light Heavyweight Championship in England within the space of a month.

On December 3, 1991 in Birmingham, England, Daniels fought a 3-round, No Decision, exhibition match with 11-time World Kickboxing Champion Don "The Dragon" Wilson at the World Martial Arts Extravaganza.

Gary Daniels retired from kickboxing in 1993 with a record of 35 wins (34 knockouts) and 4 defeats.

Fifteen years later in 2008, Daniels made a one-fight comeback in Thailand at the age of 45 and he lost by decision after 5 rounds.[8]

Acting career[edit]

Daniels began his film career in the Philippines, appearing in two low-budget films Final Reprisal and The Secret of King Mahis Island. His first starring film role was in the David Huey film Capital Punishment in 1991. He played a villain alongside Richard Norton in the film adaptation of City Hunter starring Jackie Chan; he was particularly known for a fight scene where he and Chan transform into various characters from the video game Street Fighter II. By 1996 Daniels had begun working on projects as a producer. His first producer credit occurred in the Joseph Merhi film Rage. Throughout his career he has also served as a fight coordinator. He can also be seen in the Steven Seagal project Submerged, directed by Anthony Hickox. He is still best known for portraying the heroic Kenshiro in the American live-action version of Japanese manga Fist of the North Star.

Among Daniels's fans, films that stand out include American Streetfighter, White Tiger, Bloodmoon, Recoil, Rage,, Riot, Firepower, Heatseeker and Cold Harvest. Fist of the North Star also holds a considerable cult following. In 2012 he was in a film called "The Encounter: Paradise Lost"

Gary portrayed Bryan Fury in the film version of the popular video game series Tekken. He also starred in Sylvester Stallone's The Expendables as the Brit and appears in a controversial scene in which his neck is snapped.[9] Daniels re-teams with Steve Austin and Eric Roberts in Hunt to Kill.

Daniels was once considered for the role of Johnny Cage in the movie version of Mortal Kombat. He was also a front runner for the lead role in the hit series Highlander: The Series but lost the role to Adrian Paul.

Compared to martial arts actors such as Jet Li or Steven Seagal, Daniels's fighting style is much less classifiable. He has studied muay thai, kickboxing, taekwondo, boxing, ninjitsu, and Northern Shaolin kung fu. In his films, he employs a mixed martial arts style, leading with strong, sweeping kicks and sometimes engaging in close quarters fights with complex hand to hand choreography. As he mentions on the commentary track on the Fist of the North Star DVD, his main discipline is the hybrid kung fu art, Siu Lum Wong Gar Kune (Shaolin Wong Family Fist), which he studied under Sifu Winston Omega, who also served as fight choreographer on Fist of the North Star.

Titles[edit]

  • World Kick Boxing Association
    • WKBA California State Light Heavyweight Championship

Filmography[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1987 Dragnet
1988 Final Reprisal David Callahan First Lead Role
The Secret Of King Mahis Island Chuck Second Lead Role
1991 Ring of Fire Bud First time partnered with Don "The Dragon" Wilson
In Between The Guardian
Capital Punishment James Thayer Lead Role
1992 Jin san jiao qun ying hui Martial Artist in Prologue
Final Impact Nick's Club Fighter
Deadly Bet Fletch
Bloodfist IV: Die Trying Scarface Second time partnered with Don "The Dragon" Wilson
American Streetfighter Jake Tanner Lead Role and Also Fight Choreographer
1993 City Hunter Kim First time partnered with Jackie Chan
American Streetfighter 2:Full Impact Jared Taskin Lead Role and Also Fight Choreographer
Knights David
Firepower Nick Sledge Lead Role
1994 Pocket Ninjas The White Dragon Lead Role.but not released until 1997
Deadly Target Charles Prince Lead Role
1995 Fist of the North Star Kenshirô Lead Role
Heatseeker Xao
Rage Alex Gainer Lead Role and Also Associate Producer
1996 White Tiger Mike Ryan Lead Role
Hawk's Vengeance Eric Hawke Lead Role and Also Fight Choreographer
1997 Bloodmoon Ken O'Hara Lead Role and Also Associate Producer
Riot Maj. Shane Alcott Lead Role
1998 Recoil Det. Ray Morgan Lead Role and Also Associate Producer
Spoiler Roger Mason Lead Role
1999 No Tomorrow Jason Lead Role
Cold Harvest Roland Chaney/Oliver Chaney Lead Role
Delta Force One: The Lost Patrol Capt. James Wellford Lead Role
2000 Ultimate Target Thomas Cane Lead Role and Unreleased to date. Title also changed to Ultimate Target
City of Fear Steve Roberts Lead Role
Fatal Blade Richard Fox Lead Role and Also Associate Producer
2001 Queen´s Messenger Captain Anthony Strong Lead Role
Witness to a Kill Captain Anthony Strong Lead Role and its a Sequel to Queen´s Messenger
2002 Epicenter Nick Constantine Lead Role
Black Friday Dean Campbell Lead Role and Also Producer
2004 Retrograde Markus First time partnered with Dolph Lundgren
2005 Submerged Col. Sharpe
2006 Reptilicant Ryan Moore Lead Role
2007 Immortally Yours Sebastian
2008 Dark Secrets Darryl Van Dyke Lead Role
2009 La Linea Martin First time partnered with Andy Garcia
2010 Game of Death Zander
Tekken Bryan Fury
The Expendables The Brit Second time partnered with Dolph Lundgren
First time partnered with Jet Li, Stone Cold Steve Austin and Eric Roberts
Hunt to Kill Jensen Straight to DVD
Second time partnered with Stone Cold Steve Austin and Eric Roberts
Across the Line Michaels Second time partnered with Andy Garcia
The Lazarus Papers Sebastian Riker
2011 Johnny's Gone Unknown
Forced To Fight Shane Lead Role and fight choreographer
2012 The Mark Joseph Pike Third time partnered with Eric Roberts
A Stranger In Paradise (film) Derek
Encounter: Paradise Lost Charlie Doles
Mark 2: Redemption Joseph Pike Fourth time partnered with Eric Roberts
The Rogue Kiefer
Liberty Agent Gunner
2013 Branson's Country Unknown rumored
Human Factor Chad
2013 Payday 2 Web Series Hector

Kickboxing record[edit]

Professional Kickboxing record

Legend:       Win       Loss       Draw/No contest       Notes

References[edit]

  • Miami Herald, 5 March 1980, Sports: NOVICE (Division): "Lightmiddleweight-Gary Daniels def. Sherman Bergman".
  • INSIDE KUNG-FU PRESENTS: KICKBOXING-SPORT OF THE 90s, August 1993, Front page story-HIS GAME IS A FOOT! Gary Daniels trades the ring for the reel thing.

External links[edit]