Cobra Kai is a nostalgic trip down memory lane for fans of the original 1980’s Karate Kid movies. The project nearly didn’t happen. Macchio was completely against doing anything Karate Kid-related after the death of his big-screen mentor Pat Morita, who famously portrayed Mr. Miyagi in the series. He also hadn’t talked to co-star William Zabka, who played rival Johnny, in twenty years.
According to Heavy, the two were reunited at the funeral for Morita in 2005. They hadn’t seen each other in 20 years. They became close friends very quickly.
“I hadn’t seen [Zabka] in 20 years. At Pat’s funeral it was a reconnection, from a whole different perspective — we were there mourning a friend. He wasn’t just the actor who played the assh*le in the movie — all of a sudden we became more connected as human beings, and friends.”
Once he heard about the idea to tell the story from Johnny’s perspective, Macchio was sold. He said showing the development for the perceived villain’s point of view would open up a lot of storytelling opportunities. He was right, and fans have been delighted by the series.
The show’s creators said they have had the idea since the early 2000’s. It took a long time, a lot of luck, and the unfortunate loss of a mutual friend to bring everything together. Now, it’s hard to imagine the show not existing.
Season 4 of Cobra Kai debuts on Netflix on New Year’s Eve. The season is scheduled for ten episodes. The story continues decades after the events of the original Karate Kid trilogy, as the complicated past between Daniel and Johnny catches up in the present day.
Are you excited for season 4 of Cobra Kai on Netflix? Let us know in the comments!