Actor Martin Kove wasn’t sure he wanted to reprise his “Karate Kid” role in Netflix’s “Cobra Kai.”
Admitting he had to be “persuaded” to return by the show’s writers, Kove — who plays villainous karate teacher John Kreese — told Page Six, “I was only interested in doing this role if he was a multifaceted character.”
The most recent season of “Cobra Kai,” which came out on Jan. 1, explores Kove’s character’s backstory, which includes a rough childhood and a harrowing time spent as a soldier in Vietnam.
“I don’t look at him as a villain,” Kove, 74, told us. “I look at him as a misunderstood character.”
He continued, “People don’t really hate my character, especially now they have a fuller understanding of what made him the way he is.”
And while fans are now getting a richer history of Kreese, when the original movie was first released, they weren’t as sympathetic. Kove said that he was once punched in the back at a supermarket while shopping in Malibu.
Kove laughed, “I turned around and it was a little kid about 7-years-old and he said, ‘You hurt Ralph [Macchio]!’”
Meanwhile, “Cobra Kai” actress Courtney Henggeler admitted to Page Six that she was on the verge of leaving Hollywood when she landed her role in the series.
Why ‘Cobra Kai’ star Martin Kove was reluctant join the series The British Journal Editors and Wire Services/ Page Six.