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Exclusive: Randy Couture on "The Expendables" and MMA Career

Posted: December 1st, 2010 by WorstPreviews.com Staff
Exclusive: Randy Couture on "The Expendables" and MMA CareerSubmit Comment
I (Alex) had the chance to speak to Randy Couture about "The Expendables," which is currently out on DVD and Blu-ray. The man is an MMA champ and easily the toughest cast member in the movie, which is why he was so modest during the interview. I also threw in some of your questions, which he was happy to answer.

How did you find out about "The Expendables"?

I found out about the project through my agent. He said that Sly was interested in talking to me about a character for a movie that he was working on. We [later] sat down and [Stallone] told me all about the project and all the guys he was trying to pull together. He explained the characters as he saw it. He was looking at me for Hale Caesar, which ultimately Terry Crews ended up playing. He changed it around and I ended up playing Toll Road, which I enjoyed immensely. It was an amazing journey.

Any idea what Toll Road (your character's name) is supposed to mean?

Of course. If you want to get passed me, you're going to have to pay.

Have you ever met Stallone before that?

I met him a couple of times. At the Arnold Classic once, and then at a photo-shoot he was doing for the fitness book he was doing with his wife. I happened to be there. It's a mixed martial arts gym in El Segundo that I've been to before and was there one of the days he was shooting.

Do you think knowing Stallone helped during the casting process?

That certainly helped having met him a couple of times before and I think more importantly probably the recent work I've done on "The Scorpion King" and "Redbelt."

Do you think you ended up playing Toll Road because Stallone wanted an actor who can believably take on Steve Austin?

I'm not sure at what point or what stage of things the finale of the movie and fight between Steve Austin and I came on the radar for Sly. I don't know if that was the intention from the beginning or as all the pieces came together and the characters started to fit together, it came on then. I don't know. All I know is that the script changed and stuff was written right there on the set. Kind of had to be on your toes, because any given day it was going to change and your lines were going to change. The characters were going to be pushed around in different ways and it ended up with me in a fight with Steve at the end of the movie, which I think turned out great. Steve and I had a blast doing it. It was a lot of fun.

Would you be able to beat up Steve Austin in real life? (via kirklazerusreturns)

I don't think Steve has any illusions that he is a real fighter at least at this stage of things. And I think if he was ten years younger, he would most certainly be a mixed martial artist. He would be competing in our sport. He's a huge fan of the sport, he knows the sport inside and out. I've been obviously fighting for thirteen years of my life. There's a big difference between what Steve has been doing, with pro wrestling and now his acting career is doing very well as well, and being a real fighter.

Which action star did you look up to growing up?

I was a fan of the action genre, certainly grew up watching "Rambo" and "Rocky." I watched all the Schwarzenegger movies. I'm a big fan of the "Die Hard" series. Those were the action stars, those were the guys. So to kind of have this film pull those three guys together is pretty cool.

Who would you like to see in the sequel?

I think the chemistry of the group that we had was so unique and we all got along so well, I can't name anybody that needs to be added to that. I think that could screw that chemistry up. I think we got it right and I don't know if we need to really change it. If it isn't broke, don't fix it. [But] those are decision that Sly in his infinite wisdom will make. He's a very smart guy. To pull all these pieces together... I don't think anyone else could have pulled it off.

Will you return for the sequel?

I certainly hope so. Toll Road didn't die and hopefully I'll get to play a big part in the second movie.

Do you know when the sequel is supposed to begin shooting?

I know that they're shooting to get started sometime in the spring.

Do you think filmmakers are reaching out to athletes more because there aren't that many tough guys left in Hollywood?

I think our society certainly has changed considerably over the last twenty, thirty years. The previous generation didn't have all the amenities and things that we enjoy now. You had to do a lot more for yourself. It was a different mentality and guys were a little bit different. That doesn't mean that there aren't tough guys out there. There are certainly some great actors; Jason Statham has played some great characters, Jet Li is another one who has some great action flicks in recent years. Does that mean those guys aren't tough? I think they're good at what they do, they're amazing. Does that mean they're going to kick ass in a real mixed martial arts fight any time soon? We're probably not going to see that, but I don't think that means they're not capable.

Out of all "The Expendables" actors (outside yourself), who do you think would do the best and worst in UFC?

Like I said, I think Steve Austin, if he was ten years younger, would definitely be in the mix. He loves the sport, he's a big physical guy. I think Dolph Lundgren has some full contact sparring [experience] and is another big strong athlete that would probably do very well. I don't think there's anybody there who couldn't train. And during the right time get them in the right fight and they'll be successful, they'll do alright.

What was the toughest fight in your career? (via Kurskij)

There's no question, the toughest fight I've had was the first time I fought Pedro Rizzo. It was a five-round back-and-forth brawl. It's no doubt the toughest fight I've ever been in. Each and every guy I've fought was tough, but that fight and that match-up in that stage of my career was the toughest fight I've ever been in.

How many fights if any do you have with UFC or any other organization? (via tony)

I have an exclusive contract with the UFC and there's three fights left in my contract right now.

To fight as a heavyweight or light heavyweight?

It doesn't stipulate.

Do you prefer fighting as a heavyweight or light heavyweight?

I competed in both. It depends more on the fight and the match-up. Obviously I'm a little more comfortable competing with guys my own size at 205lbs.

What is your walking-around weight? (via tony)

I walk around at 220lbs. I cut a little bit of weight to make 205lbs, it's not an issue. 15lbs is nothing to lose.

When you plan to retire, who would like to fight in your final match? (via AYT BALL)

I don't really have a name or a person like that. It's about interesting match-ups and intriguing fights. I feel fortunate that at this stage in my career I'm still able to compete at a higher level. Right now I've been focused on my acting career and that piece of my life. We'll just have to see what happens.

Do you think that your MMA career has helped your acting career or the other way around?

There's no question that my athletic career opened the door to be able to get movie parts. And now it's been up to me to make the right decisions and make the most of opportunities. The fact that I already have an audience of probably the most popular sport out there right now, that doesn't hurt when it comes time to make a selection to put me in a cast or not.

Source: WorstPreviews.com

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Displaying 17 comment(s) Profanity: Turn On
Max Rockatansky Junior writes:
on December 1st, 2010 at 7:35:56 AM

DaveThePhotoGuy writes:
on December 1st, 2010 at 8:24:32 AM

Nice guy..weird how Sly has managed to get a good bunch of guys in his movie..guess Sly knows who to be friend's with.
Cinemaisdead writes:
on December 1st, 2010 at 8:46:33 AM

I smoke a lot of weed
Crazyhorse writes:
on December 1st, 2010 at 9:57:32 AM

Hopefully the directing and storyline will be a little better for the sequal

Action scenes were good though in the first one
HorrorJunky4Life writes:
on December 1st, 2010 at 11:16:33 AM

Now I love Randy Couture even more. Modest and smart enough to know when Sly calls, sign up for the movie.

Van Damme, you are a wanker.
AYT BALL writes:
on December 1st, 2010 at 11:37:11 AM

Thanks Alex, great job! I compete and im a huge fan of MMA so means alot that you got one of mine in there.

Randy is a legend in the sport and look forward to seeing him in Ex 2
Ranger writes:
on December 1st, 2010 at 2:40:17 PM

Nice job Alex!

And Horror said it best... again.
minkowski writes:
on December 1st, 2010 at 5:04:08 PM

Hmm, well, he seems like a nice guy, but I only recall seeing him in the film during the scene where he talks about his cauliflower ear. And I've seen the move at least twice.

Yeah, and Van Damme didn't want to be in the film. Big deal. Get over it. He had other things to do, I guess, like another direct-to-DVD film, where he wasn't even the star (Universal Soldier: Regeneration), so whatever.

It's not like he would really compliment the film well anyway, either thematically or visually, as neither would, for example, Mr. T. or The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance.

Besides, I hardly think Couture was 'modest and smart' for appearing in the Expendables.

Not like he was doing much of anything else. In fact, he would have had to be a total dumbass to NOT take the role, given that he has no acting career to speak of, and the guy asking him to appear is a true Hollywood legend.

It's like asking a wino if he wants a bottle of Jack. What the hell else would he say?

Sorry, not trying to be an ass, but you guys need to put this sh*t into some perspective.
Ranger writes:
on December 1st, 2010 at 6:16:01 PM

'...he would have had to be a total dumbass to NOT take the role,' --- thus the problem we're having with JDVDouche-Bag.
minkowski writes:
on December 1st, 2010 at 6:59:08 PM

It's not really a problem for me, unlike for you guys, because I don't want to see him in the films.

If you've watched enough JCVD, you've seen too much of him, and that's saying a lot because he's really not worth watching often.

He's a very wooden actor, and his only strength is the display of his training, which isn't enough to demand he take on a film such as the Expendables or it's sequels.

I hope he stays away, and I hope Stallone's invitation was more of a 'nice guy' invite to a action-minded colleague, instead of a sincere attempt to drag him into the film.

And trust me, I've seen a LOT of JCVD's movies, just for the laughs. Watch Replicant with the audio commentary. You'll laugh your ass off.
Ranger writes:
on December 1st, 2010 at 7:17:59 PM

'If you've watched enough JCVD, you've seen too much of him...' --- lol.

Isn't that the truth!
Ranger writes:
on December 1st, 2010 at 7:18:32 PM

I'd bet anything JC has punched more than a few walls since passing on The Expendables.
Ranger writes:
on December 1st, 2010 at 7:20:06 PM

I mean... it's bad enough for 'The Rock' being handed the torch from Arnie, not to even get asked by Sly. Instead Sly picked athletes over actors in some cases. But VanDouche was ASKED PERSONALLY by Sly... and STILL passed.

I'd hate to give up 'Moron of the Century Award' this early, but...
minkowski writes:
on December 1st, 2010 at 8:14:55 PM

"I'd bet anything JC has punched more than a few walls since passing on The Expendables."

Stallone out to hire the walls. Bet they can act better and they won't say no.
minkowski writes:
on December 1st, 2010 at 9:44:40 PM

AYT BALL writes:
on December 2nd, 2010 at 7:54:26 AM

@ minkowski - to say Randy wasnt doing much else is a little close minded. Acting wise maybe not, but he has been focused on his sport all this time so i would say its only now that hes nearing the end of his MMA career that he would be looking for new challenges and lucky for him Sly gave him a great opportunity that he jumped on.

As for Van Damme, its not that anyone thought his acting skills would bring something new to the table, but when the movie was announced it was very much pushed as all the 80s and 90s action starts getting together to make an old school dumb action movie. Regardless what we think of Van Damme now, he is a big part of our generations action stars. Thats why people wanted to see him in it and why we all think he's foolish for turning it down. Id say my sh*ts in perspective.

Ive only watched the Expendables once, was ok, nothing special, hope to see a better follow up.
Kurskij writes:
on December 2nd, 2010 at 4:09:37 PM

I'm finally back and I there's an answer to my question.

Thanks, Alex, really thanks!

I remember that fight - Rizzo is a so-so wrestler, but his stamina and those legs - thats a tough guy to come close enough to to get the fight to the ground.

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