In an exclusive interview, Sean Kanan told Looper that it was a surreal feeling being in a pivotal scene in “Cobra Kai” Season 5, Episode 10 with not only his fellow “Karate Kid” villain actors William Zabka and Yuji Okumoto, but with Ralph Macchio as well — and that their characters were all united for a greater cause more than three decades after they last met.
“Ralph and I were on set together, and he at one point said to me, ‘Can you believe this?’ That’s one of the things I love about Ralph. Nobody deserves this success more than he and Billy [Zabka] because they’re terrific guys,” Kanan enthused. “They’ve both been around the block in Hollywood for a very long time, and he still is like, ‘Wow, isn’t this amazing? Isn’t this great?’ Keeping that sense of humility and that sense of gratitude is a lot of what makes those two such great guys … It couldn’t have happened to nicer guys, and Ralph and I were both like, ‘Can you believe this? This is 30 some years later and here we are.'”
While Kanan has found major success since “The Karate Kid Part III” — including longtime starring turns on “The Young and the Restless,” “General Hospital,” and “The Bold and the Beautiful” — he feels blessed to reprise Mike in “Cobra Kai” in an entirely different light.
“One of the greatest things about this experience for me outside of the production on a humanistic level was the opportunity to get to know Ralph again as a man,” Kanan said, humbly. “[I got to play Mike] as a 55-year-old guy, as opposed to this brash 22-year-old kid thrown into this situation that was ‘sink or swim’ as his nemesis, where we were very much kept apart. They did not do a lot to foster a friendship between us, but wisely so. Now, we have the chance to spend some time together, and that was really nice.”
All five seasons of “Cobra Kai” are streaming exclusively on Netflix.