Pat E. Johnson, Karate Kid’s coach, dies

American stuntman Pat E. Johnson has died at the age of 84. He is the martial arts master, stuntman and trainer from the film saga of Karate Kid, famous for having created many famous cinematic fights and for having trained the actors of various films with martial arts fight scenes, starting from the film The 3 of Operation Dragon starring Bruce Lee.

Pat E. Johnson died on Sunday 5 November 2023, as reported by the American magazine Variety, citing a post from Johnson’s niece, Colleen Mary Johnson Summerville, who broke the news on Facebook. Johnson died of natural causes at his home in Los Angeles, his niece said.

Ninth degree black belt

Pat E. Johnson had earned his ninth degree black belt as a karate master. In addition to dedicating himself to martial arts, he had also put his acting skills to good use, hybridizing the two sectors and therefore combining martial art with that of the film set. He has been active on the sets of over 40 films, the first of which was the legendary The 3 of Operation Dragon with Bruce Lee, released in 1973. In that film, Pat E. Johnson worked both as an instructor and as a stunt double and as an actor.

Success with Karate Kid

The great success then came with Karate Kidfirst of all the original released in 1984. Karate Kid – To win tomorrow saw him busy training the actors Pat Morita and Ralph Macchio, to whom he taught reckless moves that the young people would have to perform during fights.

Became a true legend after the first film of the saga Karate KidPat E. Johnson then covered the same role in the subsequent acts of the epic, therefore playing the role of the coach also in Karate Kid 2 – The story continues (1986), Karate Kid 3 – The final challenge (1989) e Karate Kid 4 (1994).

The actor Ralph Macchio shared a Story on his Instagram profile in which he greets his friend and colleague. “Goodbye legend,” writes Macchio. Breaking the news of the death of the great martial arts master, Ralph Macchio defined him with the following words: “A one-of-a-kind friend of his”.

Johnson was a stuntman and stunt coordinator on many other films

Pat E. Johnson has worked as a stuntman and stunt coordinator in many other Hollywood films, among which we remember Living and dying in Los Angeles (1985), Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles to the rescue (1990) and its sequels, Buffy – The Vampire Slayer (1992) e Mortal kombat (1995).

Furthermore, Johnson was one of the most famous instructors of the karate schools inaugurated by Chuck Norris. Pat E. Johnson was the one who taught at the Sherman Oaks location of the Norris schools.

In 1993 he was inducted into the North American Sport Karate Association Hall of Fame.