Remember Disney XD’s Kickin’ It? The show premiered nearly 10 years ago on June 13, 2011, and it’s seriously shocking how fast time has flown by!
As fans know, the series ended in March 2015, after four epic seasons, and everyone was pretty sad to see it go. The series starred Leo Howard, Dylan Riley Snyder, Mateo Arias, Jason Earles and Alex Jones, and it followed a group of martial arts students who had to work together to save their training center! Watching Jack, Milton, Jerry, Kim, Eddie, Rudy and the rest of the Bobby Wasabi Martial Arts Academy squad take on the world together was nothing short of magical. There’s not a day that goes by that fans don’t miss it, TBH.
“The Kickin’ It set is so much fun, I find myself in a new adventure every week. I work with an amazing cast and crew,” Olivia told Seventeenin 2012 when chatting about the series. “I am very similar to my character Kim. We both are very girly, with a little bit of toughness. We have the same style. We both really care about our friends.”
Before shooting the show, Olivia said she and the cast “did a boot camp for martial arts.”
“My seven years of gymnastics definitely helped me, but martial arts is a lot more challenging than it looks,” the actress said at the time. “I really enjoy the sport. The cast and I still go work out from time to time and we also take a parkour class when we have time.”
While some stars weren’t well versed in the sport, Leo had years of martial arts practice. “I have been training since I was four,” the actor told TV Equals in 2011. “It really helped me for this show, believe it or not. I’ve been able to teach them and help them with the karate and all of that. It’s one of my favorite things. So I got to combine what I love the most, martial arts and acting and comedy into one show.”
Since the show went off the air, Olivia and the rest of the stars, definitely changed and grew up a lot. Some of them went on to star in a bunch of TV shows and movies, while others stepped out of the spotlight to start families of their own! Scroll through our gallery to see what the Kickin’ It cast is up to now.
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Leo Howard played Jack Brewer
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As for his love life, Leo is currently in a relationship with a model named Madeleine White. They started dating in December 2016, and they couldn’t be cuter together.
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Mateo Arias played Jerry Martinez
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After Kickin’ It, Mateo acted in First Girl I Loved, Good Kids and The Samuel Project. The former Disney star released his debut album, ¿Téo?, in 2018, and is currently on tour!
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Olivia Holt played Kim Crawford
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Kickin’ It was just the beginning for Olivia. She landed numerous roles afterwards, including I Didn’t Do It, The Standoff, Class Rank, Same Kind of Different as Me, Status Update, Cloak & Dagger and more. That’s not all. She also released an EP, called Olivia, back in 2016, and since then, she’s dropped a bunch of bops over the years. The actress was linked to Ray Kearin for more than a year, but they reportedly split in 2017. Since then, she’s been seemingly single!
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Dylan Rilery Snyder played Milton Krupnick
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Dylan may always be Milton in fans’ hearts, but that didn’t stop him from accomplishing a lot after Kickin’ It ended! He went on to star in Mamaboy, Flock of Four, Astrid Clover and more. The actor married his longtime girlfriend, Sonny with a Chanceactress Allisyn Ashley Arm, in September 2019 and their wedding looked like a real-life fairytale.
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Jason Earles played Rudy Gillespie
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Jason continued to act after Kickin’ It, appearing in Hotel Du Loone, WTH: Welcome to Howler (alongside Leo!) and more. He married Katie Drysen in 2017.
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Alex Jones played Eddie Jones
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After Kickin’ It concluded, Alex stepped out of the spotlight to focus on his education. In 2014, he got accepted into The University of Alabama. He doesn’t use social media much, so it’s hard to say what he’s up to now!
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Leo Howard remembers his first thought on getting the script for “Kickin’ It” before his audition was how cool it would be to get a lead role on a Disney TV series.
“And then I saw it was a martial arts show and I thought, ‘Oh! I have to do this!'” says the 13-year-old actor who was born in Newport Beach and grew up and still lives in Fallbrook.
This wasn’t just a kid actor’s enthusiasm for a great part, mind you. As a black belt in Shorin Ryu karate and a three-time world champion in different levels of martial arts, it would be hard to picture a kid more perfectly suited to play the role of Jack on the Disney XD series.
So while he was nervous – tons of kids tried out for the part – he had reason to be confident, especially after he felt he’d hit it off with the producers, and in early 2010 he got word that he’d landed the part in the show that premieres at 8:30 p.m. Monday, June 13.
“It’s still unreal,” Leo says. “It still hasn’t really hit me. I’ll be on set and I’ll be like, ‘Wow, I have a show.’ I think it will really start to sink in when it finally comes on.”
Leo got his start thanks to his unusually early interest in martial arts.
“I was four years old, which is a little wacky, because what four-year-old goes out and says I want to do karate?” he says. “But I just had this weird passion for it and I just couldn’t get enough.”
His parents enrolled him at a dojo in Oceanside, and from those early days all he really remembers is “just everyone being so much taller than me,” Leo says. “When I was 5 or 6 my parents got another dojo that was really strong in another style called Shorin Ryu, and that’s when it really took off.”
As his martial arts skills accelerated, he soon hooked up with Matt Mullins, who ran an extreme martial arts performing group called Sideswipe that put on demonstrations of karate, acrobatics and the like all over the world.
“I think that’s what really got me addicted to performing,” Leo says. “My role changed as I’ve grown as a performer and just plain grown. I was OK, I wasn’t that great at the start, so they would do cool moves and then poof! Here’d be this cute kid running out there to do some karate. But for the last couple of years I’ve been one of the main performers.”
It was at a martial arts tournament that someone saw him and thought he might have a look the entertainment industry would like and referred him to their agent. For there he did print modeling, then commercials.
“The commercials were just insane to me,” Leo says of the excitement of doing that work. “Getting a commercial was like getting a lead role in a movie to me.”
His first theatrical part was a one-line cameo on the TV series “Monk.” He still remembers the line: “Maybe he’s afraid of karate.” His first bigger part came as Young Snake Eyes in “G.I. Joe: The Rise Of Cobra,” for which he also got to do his own stunts. (He also will be seen as Young Conan in the upcoming new version of “Conan the Barbarian,” due out in August.)
“I was running a stove with burners and the fires were under my feet as I flipped off the stove,” Leo says of the fun days spent on that movie. “A lot of breakaway stuff, too – getting hit with bottles and pans and stuff like that. The pan was rubber, but still it doesn’t feel too good. But the breakaways were really. Like this cabinet that was completely balsa wood, so you’d just slam into it and keep going.”
He got his first jobs with Disney about three years ago, a recurring role on the Disney XD series “Zeke and Luther,” and soon after a recurring gig as the host of “Leo Little’s Big Show,” a short-form Disney Channel series of about five minutes an episode for which he’d interview celebrities and report from places such as Pixar and Disney World.
“Kickin’ It,” though, is the big time for Leo, with 21 episodes ordered for the first season and all the clout of Disney behind it. In the show, Leo plays Jack, a martial arts whiz and the new kid in school who ends up helping the misfit kids save their dojo, Bobby Wasabi’s Martial Arts Academy (run by Rudy, played by Jason Earles, fresh off a long run as Miley Cyrus’s brother on “Hannah Montana”).
“Part of what I love about this show is that fans and people who watch it will really relate with characters because there’s a character for everyone,” Leo says. “There’s the quirky uncoordinated Eddie, the nerdy Milton, Jerry, the guy who thinks he’s good at everything but he’s not, and Kim, the tough girl. You can watch it and go, ‘I relate with him!’
On Monday, when the show premieres, Leo says he’ll watch it with the cast and crew – they’re shooting a new episode that day — and can’t wait to see how viewers respond.
“Hopefully I have a future in movies and all that,” he says. “We’ll see. This show hopefully gets picked up for three, four, five seasons. I’m sure it will be successful.”
Is he enjoying himself? No need to ask, really, but we do.
“I can tell you that this is something I want to do for the rest of my life,” Leo says.
Contact the writer: 714-796-7787 or [email protected]
This article is about the Disney XD television series. For the 2008 documentary film, see Kicking It. For the song, see Kickin' It (After 7 song).
Kickin' It is an American comedy television series created by Jim O'Doherty that aired on Disney XD from June 13, 2011 to March 25, 2015. The series stars Leo Howard, Dylan Riley Snyder, Mateo Arias, Olivia Holt, Alex Christian Jones, and Jason Earles.
Located in a strip mall, the Bobby Wasabi Martial Arts Academy is known as the worst dojo in the underperforming nationwide Bobby Wasabi chain. To improve the dojo's image, a tight knit crew of underdogs enlists Jack to join and help teach them about life, karate, and friendship. Additionally, the members of Bobby Wasabi Martial Arts Academy must always follow the Wasabi code: "We swear by the light of the dragon's eye to be loyal and honest and never say die. Wasabi!"
Main article: List of Kickin' It episodes
Main article: List of Kickin' It characters
On November 11, 2010, Disney XD ordered martial arts inspired comedy series Wasabi Warriors, a working title, which was created by Jim O'Doherty, who has previously worked on Grounded for Life and 3rd Rock from the Sun. Jim O'Doherty and Marc Warren serve as executive producers, while Joey Scott serves as producer. Starring in the series are Jason Earles as Rudy, Leo Howard as Jack, Mateo Arias as Jerry, Dylan Riley Snyder as Milton, Alex Christian Jones as Eddie, and Olivia Holt as Kim. The multi-camera series would begin production in Hollywood in January 2011 for a 2011 premiere and would be a production of It's a Laugh Productions. On May 16, 2011, Disney XD announced that the series would be premiering as Kickin' It on June 13, 2011.
The series was inspired by Jim O'Doherty's childhood growing up on Long Island, New York, where he earned a green belt in martial arts, but was forced to end his training when his local dojo closed down and was turned into a veterinary clinic. This childhood connection to martial arts, combined with three of his daughters' interest in karate, laid the foundation for the premise of the series.
On September 21, 2011, Disney XD renewed the series for a second season. On November 5, 2012, Disney XD renewed the series for a third season, with Alex Christian Jones not returning. On August 21, 2013, Disney XD renewed the series for a fourth season, with production to start in Los Angeles in November 2013 for a 2014 premiere. It was also announced that Olivia Holt would be leaving the series to star in Disney Channel's comedy series I Didn't Do It.
In the UK and Ireland, the series aired on Disney XD, where it aired as a preview on July 21, 2011, and officially premiered on September 1, 2011. In Australia and New Zealand, the series aired on Disney Channel, where it aired as a preview on December 31, 2011, and officially premiered on August 25, 2012. In Australia, the series premiered on Disney XD on April 10, 2014. In Malaysia, the series premiered on Disney XD on September 24, 2012.
The series premiere of Kickin' It launched as the highest-rated series premiere in Disney XD history, including when the network was known as Toon Disney. The series premiere garnered 873,000 total viewers and performed well in key demographics, with 578,000 viewers among kids 6–14 and 393,000 viewers among tweens 9–14. Additionally, it marked as the number-one series premiere of all time among kids 6–11, where it received 431,000 viewers.
- ^"Disney XD Orders "Wasabi Warriors" A New Martial Arts Inspired Comedy Series" (Press release). Disney XD. November 11, 2010. Retrieved August 26, 2018 – via The Futon Critic.
- ^"Disney XD Premieres Martial Arts-Themed Sitcom Kickin' It and Season Two of Reigning Hit Pair of Kings, Monday, June 13" (Press release). Disney XD. May 16, 2011. Retrieved August 26, 2018 – via The Futon Critic.
- ^"Kickin' It". Disney XD Medianet. Archived from the original on May 25, 2013. Retrieved August 26, 2018.
- ^Nellie Andreeva (September 21, 2011). "Disney XD Renews Kickin' It for Season 2". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved August 26, 2018.
- ^Nellie Andreeva (November 5, 2012). "Disney XD's Kickin' It Renewed for Third Season". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved August 26, 2018.
- ^Nellie Andreeva (August 21, 2013). "Disney XD Renews Kickin' It for Fourth Season". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved August 26, 2018.
- ^"Disney XD's Kickin' It Launches as the Network's No. 1 Original Series Debut Ever in Total Viewers, Kids 6–14 and Tweens 9–14" (Press release). Disney XD. June 14, 2011. Retrieved August 26, 2018 – via The Futon Critic.
- ^"Monday's Cable Ratings". The Futon Critic. June 15, 2011. Retrieved August 18, 2018.
- ^"Monday's Cable Ratings". The Futon Critic. March 28, 2012. Retrieved August 21, 2018.
- ^"Monday's Cable Ratings". The Futon Critic. April 3, 2012. Retrieved August 23, 2018.
- ^"Monday's Cable Ratings". The Futon Critic. December 5, 2012. Retrieved August 25, 2018.
- ^"Monday's Cable Ratings". The Futon Critic. April 2, 2013. Retrieved August 27, 2018.
- ^Son of the Bronx (February 7, 2014). "Disney Channel, Disney Junior and Disney XD Ratings (January 27–February 2, 2014)". Son of the Bronx. Retrieved August 31, 2018.
- ^Son of the Bronx (February 28, 2014). "Disney Channel, Disney Junior and Disney XD Ratings (February 17–23, 2014)". Son of the Bronx. Retrieved September 2, 2018.
- ^Mitch Salem (March 26, 2015). "Top 25 Wednesday Cable Originals & Network Update: 3.25.2015". Showbuzz Daily. Archived from the original on March 28, 2015. Retrieved September 2, 2018.
Cast kick it
.Kickin' It- Real Name and Age (2021)
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