Thursday, June 4, 2009
Michiko Nishiwaki (Nishiwaki Michiko) , was born on November 21, 1957 in Funabashi, Chiba, Japan.
She is a former female bodybuilder, powerlifter, actress, fitness trainer, stunt woman, martial artist and fight choreographer.
Michiko started out, as a lot of fitness stars did, in gymnastics.
She looked into bodybuilding when she noticed how large her legs were when compared to her upper body, hoping that weightlifting would give her better symmetry.
Michiko became a powerlifter, Japan's first female powerlifting champion and eventually Japan's first female bodybuilding champion.
This was very unusual for a woman in Japanese society at that time.
She also opened three fitness clubs with her brother.
Michiko began her acting career in 1985 when she caught the eye of Jackie Chan and Sammo Hung. (How many careers has Jackie Chan launched?)
She appeared in his film "My Lucky Stars" a Hong Kong martial arts/comedy film as a Japanese fighter.
Michiko landed several roles in Hong Kong movies after that, usually playing a villain or a femme fatale.
After that, she returned to Japan, but then went to Thailand and made a few more films.
Eventually she landed in the US and began a career as a stunt woman appearing in a lot of movies you may have seen, but had no idea that she was in.
As a stunt woman she appeared in Blade, Man on the Moon, Charlie's Angels, Rush Hour 2, The Scorpion King, Kill Bill: Vol. 1 and Vol. 2, Memoirs of a Geisha and Resident Evil: Extinction.
She also worked on 2009's Afro Ninja as Yuko.
Michiko has stunt doubled for Lucy Liu in four films and Kelly Hu in one.
Here she is in a clip from her first movie, "My Lucky Stars"...
You can find out even more about Michiko at her website here: