Uploaded on May 27, 2010
"Dre Parker is a cool American kid who's left Detroit and now is just trying to make it in China," says Jaden Smith, who previously starred alongside his father in the worldwide hit The Pursuit of Happyness and now takes the star reigns himself, headlining The Karate Kid. "He's definitely having a rough time -- he feels like he just doesn't fit in. He doesn't mean to, but he gets on the bad side of some bullies. He's got no friends and nowhere to go, and that's when he finds out that his building's maintenance man, Mr. Han, is a kung fu master. Mr. Han teaches him kung fu, and they end up having a special bond between them."
It's a theme that has long resonated with audiences -- and explored in the hit movie of the same title that starred Ralph Macchio and Noriyuki "Pat" Morita. Morita's portrayal of the stoic sensei, Mr. Miyagi, earned an Oscar® nomination and passed into legend.
Producer Jerry Weintraub, who produced the first series of films as well as the new film, says that the story endures because its underlying story is universal. "Ultimately, it's the tale of a father and son," he says. "It's not so much about the karate. What endures, what kids look to, is the story of a boy searching for a father and a mentor."
It would be up to producers Will and Jada Pinkett Smith, James Lassiter, and Ken Stovitz, as well as director Harald Zwart to bring around this new version of the classic, updating it for a new generation. "The teenagers who made the original Karate Kid a hit are now parents with kids of their own," says Lassiter. "We wanted to remind them of the movie they loved so well -- that we all love so well -- but also make a modern movie that their kids can enjoy, too."
The new film couldn't be a remake -- it would have to capture those themes while standing on its own. "The key for anybody in touching material like this is to make sure that you pay homage and respect to the original but somehow find a way to expand upon it and bring it to 2010," says Zwart. A BlackTree Media Production Thank you for watching! Blacktree is at all the hottest events on the planet (award shows, movie premieres and press junkets, fashion shows, etc.) and now BLACKTREE ON TV brings stars to YOU on Soul of the South! Watch Full episodes below, and tune in!
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