Pivotal figure in the 1970s explosion of martial arts cinema as lethal “fists for hire” trouble shooter, Takuma (Terry) Tsurugi, starring in the phenomenally popular and ultra violent “The Street Fighter” series of action films. Sonny Chiba wasn’t a graceful, fluid fighter like screen icon Bruce Lee, but rather he was a ferocious machine that mowed down his opponents with his fists and feet, always with a menacing grimace on his face!
Chiba was born Sadao Maeda in Fukuoka, Japan in 1939 and shared a house along with four other siblings to a father who was a military test pilot. As a youth, he was keen on both theatre and gymnastics, and was a talented enough athlete to score a position in the Japanese Olympic Team, until a chronic back injury finished his gymnastic aspirations. However, whilst at university he took a strong interest in karate under the guidance of the legendary “Mas Oyama”, and soon earned his first black belt. However, his life took another turn, when in 1960… read more