Zhenwei Wang is a Chinese born movie actor, known for The Karate Kid (2010) and Movie Martial Arts vs. Reality (2012) and a black belt martial arts expert who made his film debut as Cheng in the 2010 remake of The Karate Kid.
Born on October 20, 1995 in Handan, Hebei, China, an industrial city in southern Hebei province in eastern China, a communications and transportation hub on the Fuyang River north of Anyang; population 1,221,900 (est. 2006) to a middle class family, Zhenwei had never acted before 2010. He started training in Wushu at the Beijing Shichahai Amateur Sports School at age four.
At the age of just 4 and a half, his father Wang Chaoguo sent him away to the Beijing Shenshahai/Beijing Shichahai Amateur Sports School as he was “weak and sickly” described by his father. Zhenwei was highly focused and energetic during practice sessions. At his young age, he did not complain of being tired even after hours of practice. After years of hard work and effort, Zhenwei gained high praise from the wushu industry with his determination and firm martial arts foundation. After training for three and a half years, his father sent him to the Haidian Gymnasium when Zhenwei was about eight years old and he began learning the national wushu routines. His father sent him away from the family to live and study in Beijing, China so that he cold have a better education in the capital city of the People’s Republic of China. Despite training, working and studying for long hours and at such a young age, Zhenwei did not complain that he was tired. Not even a bit.
Instead, Zhenwei received many awards in national competitions at a young age. He was awarded two gold medals in the Beijing Youth Wushu Competition. Two years later, when Zhenwei was 10, he came in first out of 57 excellent competitors when the national wushu team was searching for new members, and he successfully entered the national wushu B-Mannschaft. He was a two-time Beijing Youth Wushu gold medalist before being discovered and auditioning for his debut role as Cheng in the 2010 remake of The Karate Kid. In the movie, he associated himself with Jaden Smith who played Dre Parker. He played one of Jaden Smith’s on-screen rivals in The Karate Kid, a rebellious, sadistic and ruthless kung fu prodigy. But in real life, Zhenwei is good friends with Jaden Smith and he even taught Jaden some Mandarin Chinese.
In July 2009, The Karate Kid began looking for cast members. The filming dictated that a teenage martial artist be selected. The vice-director of the filming team and Jackie Chan’s assistant started the auditions within China’s martial arts schools. At the Beijing Film Academy, approximately ten thousand selected contestants participated in the audition. The selection was extremely strict: English and Mandarin Chinese fluency, wushu skills, physical appearance, acting facial expressions, and even control over eye expressions were tested. After 3 months of auditions, Zhenwei overcame all difficulties and successfully became the actor who would portray Cheng in The Karate Kid. When filming The Karate Kid (2010), Zhenwei suffered a head injury requiring four stitches. He received it while chasing Jaden Smith (who played Dre Parker) after being splashed by the dirty water; Zhenwei hit his head on an oil pail. In addition, he received other minor injuries but fortunately, they were minor and everything healed up, so there was no major delay. The director stood by his side when he got injured and gave him days off to rest so he could heal his wounds.
Following this, Zhenwei returned to the big screen two years later at age 17 and starred as “Boss” in the comedy TV Series Movie Martial Arts vs. Reality. He resides in Beijing Xicheng District, Beijing, China. His brilliant on-screen performance and his fluency in Mandarin Chinese and English proves that he has amazing talents, both on-screen and off screen.
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