No way, Bruce Gracie!


Well that’s me in shock for the rest of the day.

I just found out that Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu legend Rickson Gracie has a cameo part in the new “The Incredible Hulk” film!

In the film’s flashback sequences Bruce Banner settles in Brazil and comes across Rickson in an Aikido dojo (bit weird!)

Rickson teaches Banner to control his emotions and shows him that weird-yoga-stomach-exercise-thing that he did in his own documentary Choke (Which is a classic film itself and a standard tool when introducing someone to the world of MMA) to help him control his breathing.

Rickson famously quipped in Choke that “Strong men grow on trees” regarding Jiu-Jitsu’s superiority over muscle-bound fighters of other disciplines. So, the question would naturally follow- which tree did Mr. Hulk sprout from?

The other weird thing about the casting is that they’ve labeled him in the credits as an “Aikido Instructor.” When the discipline that his family established, spread and popularised was Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (Or Gracie Jiu-Jitsu as the family refers to it).

Actually, on a side point, something that I’ve always found funny is knowing that one of Jean Claude Van Damme’s earliest film roles was a minor part in a film called Monaco Forever, where the credits listed him as “Gay Karate Man.” Somebody must have accurately sized him up when he attended the casting auditions.

It’s true that martial arts such as Aikido, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and Judo all find their roots/origins in traditional Japanese Jiu-Jitsu. These three arts are sort of like sons from the same father.

But hasn’t anyone heard of sibling rivalry? Why attribute such a famous martial artist to a rival martial art? Especially when he’s amongst the founding family of the art itself?

It’s a bit like giving the CEO of Coca-Cola a bit part in a film and casting him as “Pepsi salesman.”

MMA stars have long been making appearances in films. We’ve had Randy Couture making cameos (and now rumored to have been given a significant role in Mummy 3). Bas Rutten is so prolific in films that he now has a filmography section in his Wikipedia article.

Even last night I abruptly sat up in my chair whilst watching Drillbit Taylor as Chuck Liddell suddenly appeared on my screen.

I’m just wondering what to expect next, Alien Vs Rampage?!

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