Jean-Claude Van Damme

(biography, photo, video) Jean-Claude Camille Francois van Varenberg

photo Jean-Claude van Damme

  • Name: Jean-Claude Van Damme ( Jean-Claude Camille Francois Van Varenberg )
  • Date of birth: 18 October 1960
  • Age: 56 years
  • Place of birth: Berchem-Sainte-Agathe, Belgium
  • Height: 177
  • Activities: actor, Director, writer and producer of fight scenes, producer, athlete, European champion in karate
  • Marital status: Married to Gladys Portugues

    Jean-Claude van Damme: biography

    Born Jean-Claude 18 Oct 1960 in one of the nineteen communes called the Berchem-Sainte-Agathe, which is part of the Brussels-capital region, in the family of an accountant and housewife. His father was not only the debits and credits, but also had their own flower shop. Mother took care of the house and upbringing of their only son. Probably in early childhood, the mother was paying attention to the child more than the father, as the little Jean-Claude grew up pampered, frail and whiny boy, but now believe it is quite difficult.

    However, he’s tall for his age and very thin, the child wore glasses with thick lenses, were round-shouldered, despite the lessons of classical choreography, and very painful. When the boy was ten years old, his father took him to karate, to instill in him the love of the sport and show a healthy masculine spirit of competition. Jean-Claude fell in love with the arts immediately. Under the guidance of his coach Claude Goetz guy mastered not only the technical skills of karate, but also psychological preparation, auto-trainings and tactical features of unarmed combat.

    Martial arts

    Serious attitude to his work could not fail to give fruit. After eight years of playing a future star, and passed the exam for a black belt, and two years later won the championship of Europe among professionals, knocking out his opponent in the first round. Complete statistics professional fights Jean-Claude van Damme as follows: twenty-two matches, twenty wins, thirteen of them by knockout, and two technical defeat.

    I wonder what van Damme has not only karate, but also the four dimensions of martial arts: the American version of kickboxing, Thai Boxing, called Muay Thai, Chinese martial art kung fu and Korean martial Taekwondo. Despite the fact that in the age of nineteen, Jean-Claude opened his own sports club under the name «California» in which he taught karate, aerobics and bodybuilding, it irresistibly attracted the world of cinema. So, forgetting about the very promising business, which brought him a fairly stable financial position, especially considering the young age of the athlete, the young man is at risk.

    He sells gym, guile infiltrates a film festival using a fake ticket and got some useful contacts from the world of cinema. Then sent to conquer the United States of America.


    First, all the circumstances were against future actor. Prior arrangement with the actress Jacqueline Bisset was empty chatter, and van Damme had to literally fight your way to the cinematic Olympus. For four years the young man unsuccessfully telephoned the Studio, offering his candidacy to participate in the filming. In parallel, he worked as a driver, a fighter on the shady underground rings and even a bouncer at the club of Chuck Norris.

    First film debut was in 1986 in the movie «No retreat, no surrender», where the actor plays a Russian fighter Ivan Krechinskogo. Incidentally, it was then sounded for the first time who later became famous alias van Damme. Jean-Claude had to change the real name van Varenberg, as it was difficult to pronounce the English people.

    But the real success came to the actor after the famous movie «bloodsport», which allowed the producer centre thirty times to recoup the cost of shooting. Subsequent films such as «Kickboxer», «AWOL», «Double impact», «Universal soldier», «Nowhere to run» has only reinforced the popularity. So much so that van Damme was the prototype of one of the characters in the computer game «Mortal Kombat», and boys around the world fled to enroll in the karate section.

    Interestingly, since the actor could not fully get rid of French accent, often his characters have French names and the roots of Luc Deveraux, Chris Dubois, chance Boudreaux, Lyon Gaultier, Alain Lefevre, Philip savage, Jean Vilaine.

    In the middle and the end of the nineties the relevance of Jean-Clodd van Damme is reduced due to the decline in popularity of adventure-based martial arts. Films such as «Legionnaire», «Colony» and «Revival of death» did not bring much success, despite good scripts, and superior acting.

    The triumphant return of van Damme obliged to the film». C. V. D.», which was released in 2008. On the wave of new popularity, the actor has starred in a series of sequels: «Universal soldier 3: Renaissance» «Universal soldier 4», «the Expendables 2» and other films.

    Personal life

    Family relations, Jean-Claude van Damme, as well as many public people, is quite controversial and stormy. It is five times entered into formal marriages, twice to the same woman.

    For the first time Jean-Claude was combined with the sacrament of marriage at eighteen, and his wife became wealthy girl Maria Rodriguez, who was older than him by seven years. The couple broke up when the future actor went to conquer America. However, there he went as a bachelor and married Cynthia, Derdian, the daughter of the owner of the construction company, in which van Damme worked as a driver. A second marriage lasted only a few months and broke up because soon came to the actor’s popularity.

    At the party, Chuck Norris, van Damme meets with the champion on bodybuilding Gladys Portugues, who becomes his third wife, the mother of the son Christopher and daughter Bianca, and also shows future life, the main woman in the life of a star. But at the time the marriage lasted a few years. Gladys left her husband because of his affair with a beauty Queen, Darcy La Pierre. Interestingly, in the divorce, she demanded that Jean-Claude van Damme financial commitments, which is very unusual for Hollywood families. And actor married for the fourth time at miss La Pierre, who gave him a son Nicholas. This time the divorce occurred due to the fall of his career and the associated partying, alcohol and drugs.

    The fifth and last to date times Jean-Claude remarried to the mother of his children, Gladys Portugues, which supported ex-husband in a difficult situation. The couple were married at the home of the actor, in a small chapel near Brussels. After that, van Damme has repeatedly stated that Gladys is the only one and beloved woman.


    • 1988 — «bloodsport»
    • 1989 — «Kickboxer»
    • 1990 — «AWOL»
    • 1991 — Double impact
    • 1992 — Universal soldier
    • 1993 — «Nowhere to run»
    • 1994 — «Street fighter»
    • 1998 — «Legionnaire»
    • 2004 — the «Revival of death»
    • 2008—». K. V. D.»


    Jean-Claude Van Damme

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