In 1986, Menahem Golan is one of the best-known producers in Hollywood. Jean-Claude decides to force his way in, in his own personal style : as Golan leaves a restaurant,
Jean-Claude performs a lightning “mawashi” inches from his face. Impressed, the producer invites him to his office the next morning. Jean-Claude will have to wait for six hours before being received and
convincing Golan to take him on. But he leaves dazzled : they have given him the script of a movie! The Title : Bloodsport.
The budget for Bloodsport is unfortunately quite limited and a couple of months later, Golan, disapointed, wants to release the
film in video. But Jean-Claude doesn’t give up : he re-edits the movie himself and convinces his producer to release the movie in the theatres, without any advertising.
Bloodsport becomes immediately a huge success in the whole world. Van Damme imposes his impressive style of fighting, combining shotokan, taek-won-do and kickboxing.
Jean-Claude is entirely happy : he finally is a real actor, and Gladys, his second wife, gives him a son : Kristopher.
The movies follow each other quickly for the man called “The Muscles from Brussels”. Black Eagle, a class B movie in which
he takes a second role, comes out in 1988, shortly before Bloodsport.
The next year, Cyborg, another science fiction adventure and especially Kickboxer, a spectacular action movie, make him take part in more and more scenarios
and finalize fighting choreographies.
With Full Contact and Death Warrant (1990), Jean-Claude confirms his charisma as actor, his physical qualities and his gifts as a scenarist.. Double Impact (1991) is a spectacular
movie and a personal challenge for the star since he has to play twin brothers.
After the impressive Universal Soldier (1992), Jean-Claude acts in two very beautiful movies in 1993, Nowhere To Run and Hard
Target, which show his talents as dramatic actor. One year later, he comes out with Timecop, Street fighter and Sudden Death!