It is with sorrow in our hearts that we at Kung Fu Kingdom bid farewell to action actor, stunt performer, and martial artist Darren Shahlavi. News of Darren’s death arrived early yesterday morning but he passed away on Wednesday 14th Jan at his home in LA. His passing comes during the making of “Kickboxer: Vengeance”, the upcoming reboot of Jean-Claude Van Damme’s 1989 cult classic, “Kickboxer“. Van Damme himself will appear in the film alongside Darren, who will portray the role of Eric Sloane, with Alain Moussi, Georges St. Pierre, Dave Bautista, Matthew Ziff, and Gina Carano co-starring. His posthumous appearance in the film will also be followed in the coming months by “Pound of Flesh”, “Zambo Dende”, “Jaya”, and “Tomorrowland”
Born in Stockport, Cheshire, England on 5th August, 1972, Darren was inspired early on to take his martial arts skills to the big screen. He first gained attention in Hong Kong with his role in 1996’s “Tai Chi Boxer” opposite Wu Jing, and really rose to prominence among action fans with his villainous appearance in the acclaimed martial arts thriller “Bloodmoon“, opposite Gary Daniels and Chuck Jeffreys in 1997.
Other prominent appearances Darren made over the years include his role in the TV series “Metal Hurlant Chronicles”, alongside Scott Adkins, Matt Mullins, and Michael Jai White, his role as Kano in the first season of the web-series “Mortal Kombat: Legacy”, and his role as Constantine Drakon in the pilot episode of the acclaimed television series, “Arrow”. However, Darren would later achieve worldwide prominence in 2010 with his role of the bloodthirsty British boxer Taylor “The Twister” Milos in “Ip Man 2“. This was an especially sweet achievement, given that Darren had actually attended a seminar on fight choreography at the age of 17 in London – one that was conducted by the future Ip Man himself, Donnie Yen!
Darren leaves behind a legacy of an enormously talented martial arts master forever immortalized through the art of film, and his appearance in “Ip Man 2” is all the more significant now in how it embodies something that so few of us ever achieve – learning directly from one of our personal heroes and joining them on their own playing field years later.
To help the Shahlavi family with the expenses of Darren’s upcoming funeral and memorial, please visit the Darren Shahlavi Memorial Fund here and share the link through Facebook and Twitter.
Rest in Peace, Darren Shahlavi our thoughts of respect and appreciation go with you…