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For upcoming film, Jean-Claude van Damme embraces new passion for jiu-jitsu in Abu Dhabi

For upcoming flim, Jean-Claude van Damme embraces new passion for jiu-jitsu in Abu Dhabi
30 June 2024 22:03

KUUMAR SHYAM (ALETIHAD)

Veteran Hollywood star Jean-Claude van Damme has been smitten with the sport of jiu-jitsu on first impression, so much so that he has already decided to incorporate in his next film production.

The Belgian-born actor spoke to Aletihad in Abu Dhabi where he made a special appearance at the inaugural Khaled bin Mohamed bin Zayed Jiu-JItsu Championships which saw its first of five rounds conclude on Sunday.

Invited by the organisers on the third and final day of the Championship, which will be held across different Emirates of the country, Van Damme gave medals to athletes on the podium for some of the categories.

"This sport has been here for many years, so it is a great sport," said Van Damme, still looking dapper and fit at the age of 63.

"But it is also an art. It demands a lot of conditioning, hard work and there is a lot of respect and politeness for the opponent, so it is a good thing for the families and generations to come.

 
 
 
 
 
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A post shared by Jean-Claude Van Damme (@jcvd)


"It requires a lot of techniques; it is a lot for me. Even if I go up against one of the young children, they will make a spaghetti out of me. This sport is a great offering from Abu Dhabi to the world," said Van Damme, who became known for his splits and real action scenes in films such as "Bloodsport", "Kick Boxer", "Double Impact", "Hard Target" and many more.

JCVD, as he prefers to be known rather than his other nickname "Muscles from Brussels", blended his martial arts upbringing with good looks to become one of the super action heroes in the late 1980s until the turn of the century.

Armed with a karate black belt and a 19-1 record in kickboxing, JCVD did odd jobs as a waiter, taxi driver and a bouncer before striking it big in Hollywood.

Now as a film producer, he is coming up with the much-delayed "Battle Run", in which he will be the villain and will be gathering all different types of fighters.

In an older video, he indicated that "Battle Run" would be a blend of "Bloodsport" and "Street Fighter", another of his movies.

Asked if his next project will include jiu-jitsu, Van Damme said, "We are starting 'Battle Run' by the end of this year, where all sorts of martial arts fighters will be in it, and jiu-jitsu is not my speciality, so we could have some fighters from this sport," the actor said before being mobbed by a horde of selfie-seekers.

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