Martin Kove

If Martin Kove's rugged face looks familiar, it's because he's shown up in some of the most beloved movies and TV shows of the 1980s. Perhaps his best-known role came in "The Karate Kid" as evil martial-arts sensei John Kreese, instructor to the rivals of Ralph Macchio's title character. During the 1970s he began his steady career in a grab bag of film and television roles, until he landed the part of villain Nero the Hero in the 1975 cult classic "Death Race 2000." Guest appearances on the crime shows "Charlie's Angels" and "CHiPs" led to another big break when he landed the role of detective Victor Isbecki on the 1980s favorite "Cagney & Lacey." His role as the very focused and very mean Cobra Kai sensei John Kreese followed in 1984, and Kove went on to reprise the role in the 1986 and 1989 sequels. It was after his notable performance in the first "Karate Kid" that he landed a part as a backstabbing helicopter pilot in the Sylvester Stallone vehicle "Rambo: First Blood Part II." Throughout the 1990s and into the 2000s Kove worked steadily on a number of lesser known television shows and films, but consistently booked several projects each year.