‘Cobra Kai’ Creators & Ralph Macchio Disagree on ‘The Karate Kid III’

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Getty Ralph Macchio is photographed at 'The IMDb Show' in 2019.

“The Karate Kid” was an instant success when it premiered in 1984. Its popularity caused it to have three sequels and a 2010 remake. The hit series, “Cobra Kai,” created by Jon Hurwitz, Hayden Schlossberg, and Josh Heald, also continues the storyline of the martial arts film franchise. 

Ralph Macchio Stated That He Does Not Enjoy “The Karate Kid Part III”

In a January 2021 interview on the “Sway” podcast, the “Karate Kid” himself, Ralph Macchio, stated that he dislikes one of the movie’s sequels. The actor explained that he did not enjoy the cartoonish aspects of “The Karate Kid Part III.” As fans of the martial arts franchise are aware, the 1989 movie takes place about a year after Daniel LaRusso wins the 1984 All Valley Tournament. After Johnny Lawrence (William “Billy” Zabka) loses the final round to Daniel, John Kreese’s (Martin Kove) Cobra Kai dojo goes under. The sensei’s wealthy friend Terry Silver (Thomas Ian Griffith) comes up with a convoluted plan that involves manipulating Daniel to bring business back to the dojo. Macchio explained that Hurwitz, Schlossberg, and Heald “are big fans of ‘The Karate Kid Part III,'” while he is “not.” 

The 59-year-old then explained that he “felt for the LaRusso character he never went forward” and that the studio was “redoing the first movie in a cartoon kind of a sense without the heart and soul.”

During a June interview with Showbiz Cheat Sheet, Hurwitz, Schlossberg, and Heald talked about “The Karate Kid Part III” and touched upon the fact that some of the movie’s cast members, including Macchio, Martin Kove, and Pat Morita, did not have a fondness for the film. The writer of the first three “Karate Kid” films, Robert Mark Kamen, and John G. Avildsen, who directed the movie, also had a distaste for it. Schlossberg stated that he believes “for all of them, it was a sequel movie that they made at this time in their lives where they had a lot going on.”

The executive producer then explained that he, Hurwitz, and Heald enjoyed “The Karate Kid Part III” because they were children when it was released. He told the publication:

For us, we were just kids at home watching part three and taking it all very seriously because we weren’t old enough yet to say, ‘Oh, is this a little far fetched?’ Our first impression of the movie I think is legitimate. We felt like this is a continuation of these characters.

Schlossberg went on to say that even as an adult, he enjoys some aspects of the film.

“To John Avildsen’s credit and [composer] Bill Conti and Thomas Ian Griffith, there’s a lot in the movie that is really fun and gets your blood pumping. I think there’s definitely scenes that are fun to rewatch. So it’s not one of these oh my God, let’s just forget about that and put that away. There’s stuff there that we love and it’s exciting to delve back into that,” stated the writer. 

During the Showbiz Cheat Sheet Interview, Hurwitz Also Spoke About “The Next Karate Kid”

During the Showbiz Cheat Sheet interview, Jon Hurwitz discussed the fact that the writers may include characters from “The Next Karate Kid,” which starred Hilary Swank, in “Cobra Kai.” He suggested that while Macchio did not have any involvement with that film, he may prefer it over “The Karate Kid Part III.” 

“I don’t even know if he ended up seeing [‘The Next Karate Kid’] or not. He’d have to tell you that. I think he’s more comfortable with that movie perhaps than he was with his own experience making the third movie at a time when he was not eager to and with some of what was going on with the story again,” stated the 43-year-old. 

The fourth season of “Cobra Kai” will likely be released later this year. 

READ NEXT: Chad McQueen’s Daughter Reveals if He Will Be in ‘Cobra Kai’

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