Gary Daniels is a martial arts actor, stuntman, and producer from London, England. He built his reputation by being a great competitor in the U.S. fighting circuit. He defeated Sherman “Big Train” Bergman, who is known for being the only kick boxer to knock down Jean-Claude Van Damme, in his first bout in the U.S. A lot of officials around the time were not fond of Daniels’ aggressive style, and he was disqualified in some of his matches. Despite these issues, he had a record of 29-4 when he first retired in 1993.
He briefly returned in 2008, but lost his fight in Thailand. His mixed martial arts background in muay thai, kickboxing, taekwondo, boxing, ninjitsu, and Northern Shaolin kung fu is shown in roles such as: City Hunter, Fist of the North Star, and The Expendables.
Here are 7 solid fights from Gary Daniels:
1. Fights With One Arm
Daniels plays a character who dares to spar with one arm in the 2008 biographic TV series, The Legend of Bruce Lee. It’s a good scene with great suspense and flair. The guy that played Bruce Lee, Danny Chad, did a good job getting into character for this role. I also like the attention to facial expressions and breaks in the action to make the scene more dramatic. Daniels showed great prowess and weapon work throughout the scene as well.
2. Gary Daniels vs Steve Austin
Hunt to Kill was a pretty intense classic American action film. Who’s more American and epic than Stone Cold? This was a pretty great fight with Daniels showing some incredible grabs and dynamic combinations. He even showed some arm bars and grappling techniques to match Austin’s wrestling background. Daniels’ jump kick off the tree was a pretty sweet touch as well. Things even out a bit more when they pick up some sticks. Daniels definitely showed excellent dynamics, but it wasn’t enough. Austin finishes Daniels with a fatal stab through the body. Not a bad scene for Austin and Daniels. You could tell they had some good onscreen chemistry.
3. Raging Storm
Raging Storm is a great title especially for this group of scenes! This is a countdown of some of the most epic shots of Raging Storm. Daniels goes into straight beast mode as he drives a truck loaded with propane right into a school bus, and jumps off before the collision. That’s a crazy stunt and one of my favorites out of the movie. Don’t worry..there’s great gun play, too. Daniels takes out a bunch of adversaries in a crazy gun fight in the mall. Talk about action! Great work, Daniels.
4. Jackie Chan vs Gary Daniels
Yes! One of the coolest scenes from City Hunter. Kim (Daniels) is sort of a playboy assassin, and tries to seduce Kaori, a girl captured by Donald (Richard Norton) and his henchmen. Kim was not expecting a visitor that would interfere with his intimate moment. Ryo (Chan) and Kim made this fight pure comedy with some fast punching combinations and funny choreography, which leads into a scene where Donald walks in with his henchman. Ryo surrenders, but not without landing a few cheap shots on Kim. This scene leads into the classic Street Fighter II bout, which can be seen on my article: 10 Funny Jackie Chan Fight Scenes.
5. Hokuto no Ken
Hokuto no Ken, better known as Fist of the North Star, was Daniels’ breakout role. Fist of the North Star is a very popular anime by Toei Animation. It’s a post apocalyptic based anime that features a character Daniels plays named Kenshiro or Ken (a practitioner of the fictional style, Hokuto Shinken) who seeks revenge against Lord Shin. Lord Shin (Costas Mandylor) is the dictator of Southern Cross, and he captured Ken’s fiancee as well as killed his master. This turn of events led to a bout of opposing styles – Ken (North style) vs Shin (South style).
Daniels shows some great looking kicks and a bit of Ken’s character in his punches. It’s become a cult classic for how well it translated from the anime. It’s one of the better anime to American live action films out there. Other films (cough, cough..Dragonball Evolution) should take notes.
6. Grenade Drop
The best part of this clip is when Daniels shoots the pin off the grenade before the enemy can fully react. Daniels ends up saving the girl and the enemy gets caught in the explosion. The timing was pretty awesome, and it was such a left field tactic. You have to give the guy the kudos he deserves. Great scene from Witness to a Kill.
7. Pure Mayhem
This is a quality fight from Recoil. Daniels takes on a bunch of thugs for 3 minutes of pure action. If you really love the 90s style of action scenes with pure fighting and less special effects, this is a scene you’ll enjoy! Overall, good work.
As you can see, Daniels has quite an action resume. His display of martial arts expertise and aggressiveness equals the perfect recipe for a great action film. I hope we see more from this guy in the near future. What are some of your favorite fighting scenes from Daniels? Leave a comment below!