Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Ralph Macchio Weighs In On The New Karate Kid Movie Announcement - Exclusive

It's been an eventful 38 years for Ralph Macchio since the release of the classic sports drama "The Karate Kid," especially since the blockbuster film spawned two sequels in the 1980s, as well as the mega-successful spinoff series "Cobra Kai" that kicked off in 2018. Hot off the success of "Cobra Kai" Season 5 on Netflix, Macchio is recalling the remarkable past four decades in his life and career in his new memoir "Waxing On: The Karate Kid and Me" (Dutton).

Macchio played Daniel LaRusso in "The Karate Kid," the new kid in town in California's San Fernando Valley after the teen and his mom, Lucille (Randee Heller) relocate move in from New Jersey. Immediately targeted by bullies, Daniel finds a friend and mentor in Mr. Miyagi (Pat Morita), who leads a quiet existence as his apartment building's handy man. Miyagi teaches Daniel the martial arts not only as a way to defend himself, but to eventually face off against his chief antagonist — Cobra Kai dojo student Johnny Lawrence (William Zabka) — in the All-Valley Karate Tournament.

In between Macchio's original "Karate Kid" trilogy and "Cobra Kai," Columbia Pictures twice attempted to reboot the franchise, first with 1994's "The Next Karate Kid," starring Morita and a then-relative unknown Hilary Swank. In 2010, Columbia went back to the beginning and remade "The Karate Kid" — produced by Will Smith and starring his son, Jaden, as well as Jackie Chan — which reconfigured the events and changed the names of the characters featured in the 1984 original.

Now, in the aftermath of "Cobra Kai" — which is still awaiting a renewal for a sixth season — Columbia has announced that it is producing yet another version of "The Karate Kid" for theatrical release. While no details are available about the remake, Macchio is still willing to offer his opinion about the upcoming chapter in the beloved "Karate Kid" franchise.

Macchio says it will be 'exciting to see' what's in store for the Karate Kid franchise

In an exclusive interview with Looper to discuss "Waxing On," Ralph Macchio, naturally, recalled several moments of his career as they relate to "The Karate Kid" and "Cobra Kai." As to what will happen in the new "Karate Kid" movie — which has already been slated for a June 7, 2024, release — Macchio said he's as in the dark as anybody else when it comes to details. Still, the actor is excited about the new film's prospects, as well as other upcoming projects involving "The Karate Kid" franchise.

"I don't know what's going on. I know they made an announcement that they're going to have a 'Karate Kid' feature in 2024. There's little information out yet," said Macchio, who added, "There's a Broadway musical written by Robert Kamen — who wrote the original ['Karate Kid'] script — which is based on the original film, coming to Broadway. I never cease to be amazed with the next chapter in 'The Karate Kid' universe. It'll be exciting to see it, and I'll see where it goes."

Meanwhile, Macchio is thrilled about the continued success of "The Karate Kid" and "Cobra Kai," which he writes about in great detail in "Waxing On."

"There's a lot of elements that go into why something works and connects with the masses. Certainly, you need the good writing, you need the execution, you need people who care," Macchio said, humbly. "'The Karate Kid' franchise has been blessed more than once, and it's wonderful now to have 13-year-old kids run up to me on the street and know who Mr. Miyagi is based on what we get to do with this show. Hopefully, if they read the book, they'll get to get more of an inside, honest view of what those shoes have been like for me to walk in."

Ralph Macchio's memoir, "Waxing On: The Karate Kid and Me," is available in stores and online.