Biography: Taken From Yahoo:
A master of several Japanese martial arts, Steven Seagal is a popular action movie hero whose films combine spiritual concepts and social/environmental consciousness with high-voltage violence. Born in Lansing, Michigan on April 10, 1951, Seagal traveled to Japan at the age of seventeen. There, he taught English, studied Zen, and perfected his martial arts, earning black belts in Aikido, karate, judo, and kendo. Afterwards, he became the first Westerner to open a martial arts school in Japan.
During this time, Seagal occasionally choreographed fight scenes in MOVIES and coached such stars as Sean Connery and Toshiro Mifune. He also became interested in Eastern religion: in a November, 1997 interview for the Shambala Sun, he stated that his encounter with Tibetan Buddhism resulted from his study of acupuncture. According to Seagal, several ailing Tibetan lamas, suffering from malnutrition, exhaustion, and the effects of Chinese torture, were sent to him for treatment, which led him to become a director of secret security operations and to set up special safe houses. Regarding Other incidents from his past, Seagal has remained secretive, though he was allegedly a bounty hunter and occasionally has hinted about involvement with the CIA. Further speculation has surrounded the work he did on behalf of Tibetan Freedom fighters, and it was not until 1997 that he mentioned the large amounts of money he claimed to have donated to various religious organizations.
Seagal spent about 15 years in Asia before returning to the States, where he opened a new martial arts academy and also worked as a celebrity bodyguard. His clients included his future (now ex-) wife Kelly Le Brock and Hollywood agent Michael Ovitz. With help from Ovitz, Seagal contracted to make martial arts films for Warner Bros. For his first film, he and cinematographer-turned-director Andrew Davis carefully refashioned an average police drama into Above The Law (1988), which stressed characterization and plot as well as high-energy action scenes. It was well-received and Seagal found himself an instant star among action aficionados. His next film, Hard To Kill (1989), overflowed with chop-socky violence, casting him as a cop who wakens from a coma and sets out for revenge against those who sent him to the hospital. Seagal attracted mainstream appeal in 1992 when he starred in the Davis-directed hit Under Siege, his most popular movie. In 1994, he made his directorial debut with the environmentally conscious but critically panned On Deadly Ground, in which he single-handedly attempts to save Alaska and the Eskimos from an avaricious oil tycoon. Subsequent action attempts included 1996's Executive Decision and 1998's The Patriot. In 1999, Seagal turned to producing with Prince of Central Park, an uncharacteristically gentle film about a young boy living in the titular park.
In 1997, Seagal publicly announced that one of his prime Buddhist teachers, His Holiness Penor Rinpoche, had proclaimed him a tulku, the reincarnation of a Buddhist lama. Seagal's announcement met with some cynicism, but Penor Rinpoche backed him up with a formal statement at Colorado's Naropa Institute. In subsequent Interviews, Seagal has presented himself as a serious student of Buddhism who spends many hours meditating, studying, and practicing the tenets to help him become a teacher and healer. -- Sandra Brennan, All Movie Guide
Biography Taken From Kung Fu Cinema:
Steven Seagal was introduced to the martial arts at a very young age, after stumbling onto an Aikido dojo. He also became a Buddhist and went to the east a few years after school. In Japan he became the first Westerner ever to be allowed to open an Aikido dojo. He currently has a 7th dan in Aikido and he has also trained in various Other styles, the most notable being Goju-Ryu Karate.
He later returned to America where he got involved with MOVIES, fight coordination and also being a bodyguard. He even did the martial arts coordination for the James Bond film Never Say Never Again. But it was only in 1988 that he got his first leading role thanks to student Michael Ovitz who happened to be an agent by profession. Seagal wrote and starred in Above The Law where he played a tough cop who has to deal with his military past and take out the bad guys. That movie made him an instant star and also introduced the world to the art of Aikido. The next few years went well for him, starring in MOVIES like Hard To Kill, Marked For Death and his biggest box office hit Under Siege. People liked his tough-guy attitude and his aggressive on-screen behavior.
Everything was going well for this actor up until his directorial debut titled On Deadly Ground, which wasn't a big success with either the fans or the critics. He continued to make a few more unsuccessful MOVIES and slightly recovered with Glimmer Man in 1996, but ultimately he kept going downhill. He also tried to make MOVIES about issues which he cared about by playing a native doctor in The Patriot and a cop going to a small town to stop locals from dumping waste in Fire Down Below. In 2001 he starred in Exit Wounds together with rapper DMX. While not being his best movie and lacking any real martial arts, he showed that he may still have something left for his fans to see. In the future he may still surprise the fans with a martial arts masterpiece, but that remains to be seen.
Source : Kung Fu Cinema
Biography From Star Pulse:
Steven Seagal was born on April 10, 1951, in Lansing Michigan. His father a high school math teacher, and his mother was a medical technician.
When Steven was 5 his family moved to Fullerton, CA. At the age of 7, Steven became inerested in the martial arts and discovered a Japanese dojo in nearby Garden Grove, and began studying aikido.
In 1971, two years after the death of Morihei Ueshiba, founder of Aikido, Steven left for Japan, to study with the masters in Zen, Buddhism and Aikido.
In 1975 he married and continued to live in Japan where he eventually inherited a dojo from his Japanese father in law. In the Aikido world he adopted the name Shigemichi Take (Take was his father-in-law's name). Steven lived in Asia for a long time and became close to several CIA agents, met powerful people and did special favors for them.
He returned to the United States in 1982 and opened his schools in LA and Taos New Mexico. Steven became the favorite teacher of students like Michel Ovitz, and Sean Connery who encouraged his acting aspirations.
In 1987 Michael Ovitz personally financed a screen test for Steven that ultimately landed his first film "Above The Law". Steven Seagal says "I was lucky in that I got to play me." Above The Law was, to some extent, autobiographical. Thus begins the stories about his CIA involvement, etc.
Steven Seagal also went on to star in MOVIES like "Marked For Death", "Hard To Kill", "Out For Justice", and "Under Siege".
Source : Star Pulse
Suite101.com Seagal Bio.
He appeared on the screen in the late 80’s and has been able to keep the action MOVIES rolling. Training in the martial arts since he was 7 years old and studied aboard. He has now attained the high level of 7th dan in the Japanese martial art "aikido".
With a very loyal fan base Steven Seagal has managed to keep his name in the limelight.
Seagal has some 26 action MOVIES that have never failed to keep action enthusiast entertained. The real key with most action heroes like Chuck Norris, Jackie Chan, Jet Li and Steven Seagal is the fact that they are experts in their own field of martial arts.
Born in Lansing Michigan, April 10, 1951, he started as a youth studying the martial arts. His father was a teacher and his mother a nurse. He became an instructor and even has such a high ranking that he owns and operates an Aikido dojo in Japan. Aikido is an ancient art form that utilizes an opponent’s inertia and bodyweight against them.
Seagal was first discovered in Hollywood teaching the stars martial arts. In 1983 he was teaching Sean Connery (James Bond) in the movie Never Say Never Again and actually broke Connery’s wrist.
His first movie appearance was in Above The Law (1988) he played as a vice cop in Chicago named Nico Toscani and brings down a major drug connection. His second movie hit was Hard To Kill (1990) in which he co-stared with his former and most recent wife, Kelly LeBrock. They had three children together: Annaliza, Dominick, and Arissa.
Steven has been married three times. His first wife was Miyako Fujitani with whom he has two children, Kentaro Seagal and Ayako Fujitani. His second marriage was to Adrienne La Russa which lasted under a year and was annulled.
Seagal has been a bodyguard, martial arts teacher, writer, and producer and even composes MUSIC. He loved the guitar and has recorded a singing album Songs From The Crystal Cave (2005).
As a major headliner of such MOVIES as Out For Justice (1991), Under Siege (1992), On Deadly Ground (1994) and a sequel Under Siege 2: Dark Territory (1995) you can’t mistake him for any Other action hero. He’s tall, dark haired with a long pony tail. You either love him or hate him, but some of his MOVIES strive to have a plot and even a purpose. For instance On Deadly Ground he was showing the plight of the Eskimos and the environment, while in Fire Down Below (1997) he is an Environmental protection agent fighting the dumping of toxic chemicals.
With such titles as Half Past Dead (2002), Out For A Kill (2003), Belly Of The Beast (2003) and Today You Die (2005) one can’t mistake that action is the main theme.
His characters are usually quiet at the start, even humble but then react to a situation that are intolerable and always comes out the victor. He lives on a 200 acre vineyard in Santa Inez and has a vacation home in Jamaica.
He currently has three moves in post production to be released in 2005, The Untitled Onion Movie, Mercenary, and Black Dawn. He is currently filming a movie entitled Shadows on the Sun.
Thanks to Littledragon for submitting the suite101 bio.
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