Johnny Lawrence’s right-hand man, Dutch, was undoubtedly the most ruthless of Lawrence’s Cobra Kai entourage. The aggressive attitude of Chad McQueen, who played Dutch, was a case of life imitating art apparently as it has been reported that the crew found it difficult to work with McQueen on set.
A fight scene that found itself on the cutting room floor purportedly ends with McQueen being held in a headlock after having an outburst.
Martin Kove’s Rage Lands Him the Part
Martin Kove, who played the belligerent John Kreese in 'The Karate Kid', was approached by director John Avildsen specifically requesting for Kove to audition for the role. Kove was determined to land the role, even turning down any other acting opportunities that came his way.
Unfortunately, Avildsen left Kove waiting for weeks. Kove was left irate and when the audition finally happened he let rip on Avildsen. His rage was so convincing that Avildesen immediately offered him the part!
The original cut of 'The Karate Kid' had two confrontations between Daniel LaRusso and Johnny Lawrence that were eventually snipped from the final movie. In the first missing fight sequence, Lawrence sneaks a slice of pie onto LaRusso’s seat in the school cafeteria. A highly indignant LaRusso, with pants covered in blueberry pie, attacks Lawrence.
In the second fight scene that was removed, LaRusso is seen drinking from a water fountain and is harassed by Lawrence. A reference to the first fight is made in the wildly popular follow-up series 'Cobra Kai'.
Pat Morita’s Vertical Challenges
Mr. Miyagi, while being lethal in his martial art abilities, did not cut an imposing figure. Standing at five feet and three inches, Pat Morita was notably shorter than the antagonists he had to stare down in the film.
The height differences were a challenge for the camera so the crew had Morita stand on a box in some of the face-to-face scenes to get the best shots.
A Bully Is a Friend You Haven’t Beaten Up Yet
Bullying is central to the entire motivation of the plot in 'The Karate Kid' so it may come as a surprise to realize that at no point in the film is the word “bully” used nor is the concept of “being bullied” discussed. After saving Daniel LaRusso from the Cobra Kai gang on Halloween, Mr. Miyagi oddly acknowledges the assailants as LaRusso’s friends.
Film buffs believe by not giving them the title of bully is part of the training to remove any power that they psychologically have over LaRusso.