Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

Keanu Reeves to Produce Doc on Kickboxer Benny “The Jet” Urquidez

Fri 29 Mar 2024 | 11:48 AM
Yara Sameh

Hollywood star Keanu Reeves has partnered with Academy Award winner Fisher Stevens to co-produce a documentary on the life story of Benny “The Jet” Urquidez, the iconic athlete who introduced mixed martial arts to the world.

Titled "The Jet", the film is currently in production under the direction of Emmy-nominated sports documentary editor turned filmmaker Jennifer Tiexiera. 

Its financiers are Chris Quintos Cathcart and Tyler Boehm of the newly formed Unapologetic Projects, a company dedicated to working with underrepresented creators. 

Maura Anderson and Zak Kilberg of Stevens’ recently launched production company Highly Flammable will also serve as producers along with John Scalise and his FAYA Project. 

Nancy Weisler, Brian Maya, and Chris Quintos Cathcart & Tyler Boehm of Unapologetic serve as executive producers on the project slated for release in 2025.

Nicknamed for his explosive spinning back kick, Sensei Benny “The Jet” Urquidez had a profound impact on martial arts in mainstream culture, as an actor, fight coordinator, and trainer to the stars. 

Known for his exceptional skills in kickboxing and karate, he held six world titles in five weight divisions and remained undefeated throughout his 20+ year kickboxing career.

In addition to his competitive achievements, Urquidez is renowned for his contributions to martial arts cinema, having appeared in numerous action movies during the 1980s and 1990s. 

Notable film credits include The Octagon, Road House, and Grosse Pointe Blank. Over the years, he also trained and worked with the likes of Jackie Chan, Muhammed Ali, Elvis Presley, Mark Wahlberg, Nicole Kidman, Kurt Russell, Patrick Swayze, Nicolas Cage, Michelle Pfeiffer, Duff McKagan and many others.

“Benny’s fighting career was born out of his struggles with identity, poverty, and race, but he didn’t let those things define him,” Tiexiera said. “The result is a story about how struggle and sacrifice evolved into one about love, spirituality and deeper meaning.”

Reeves stated, “Benny is a true mentor, and has had such a profound yet underappreciated impact on both cinema and martial arts. I’m very excited to help share his story with the world.”