See Jean-Claude Van Damme In Mortal Kombat, Decades In The Making

By Charlene Badasie | Updated

Jean-Claude Van Damme fans have waited 30 years to see him in the Mortal Kombat game. Now, their wish has come true with the release of a Mortal Kombat 1 gameplay trailer, which showcases the Van Damme skin for Johnny Cage. The skin is a tribute to the martial arts movie star and is a younger, more muscular version of the classic Jonny Cage character.

The clip gives players a glimpse of the Jean-Claude Van Damme skin as he flawlessly executes some of the actor’s signature martial arts moves. The Van Damme skin is available with the Premium Edition of Mortal Kombat 1. A Sub-Zero Día de Muertos skin has been confirmed for players in Latin America who pre-order the game. Fans in Brazil who pre-order get exclusive access to Tanya’s Brazilian skin.

Van Damme’s Connection To Mortal Kombat

Jean-Claude Van Damme has an interesting connection to the Mortal Kombat games and movies, though it’s not in the way one might expect. While he didn’t directly participate in the franchise, his involvement is tied to some fascinating behind-the-scenes history. Van Damme was initially considered for the role of Johnny Cage in the original Mortal Kombat game.

When the game was being developed in the early 1990s, Cage was designed with Jean-Claude Van Damme as inspiration. However, the character was reworked due to various logistical and contractual issues, and the game’s creators developed an entirely original character instead. Nevertheless, Johnny Cage’s design and persona still echo Van Damme’s action-hero image.

Then, in 1994, a live-action movie adaptation of the popular video game Street Fighter was produced, with Jean-Claude Van Damme playing Colonel Guile. While not directly related to Mortal Kombat, the movie holds a unique place in video game movie history and coincided with the rise of Mortal Kombat’s popularity. Both franchises were often compared during this period.

Mortal Kombat 1 Is Loaded With Stars

Jean-Claude Van Damme isn’t the only recognizable celebrity making an appearance in Mortal Kombat 1. NetherRealm Studios and Warner Bros. recently revealed that Megan Fox will lend her likeness and voice to Nitara, the vampiric character from the “3D Era” of the game. The game also features John Cena as Peacemaker, Anthony Starr as Homelander, and J.K. Simmons as the voice for Omni-Man.

The Jean-Claude Van Damme skin is available with the Premium Edition of Mortal Kombat 1.

Mortal Kombat 1 is slated for release on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 5, Windows PC, and Xbox Series X on September 19. For those eager to get their hands on the game a bit earlier, there is a five-day early access opportunity through the Premium Edition, which not only includes the base game but also the inaugural Kombat Pack and the highly anticipated Jean-Claude Van Damme Johnny Cage skin.

Mortal Kombat 1 marks the 12th installment in the main series and serves as a sequel to 2019’s Mortal Kombat 11 while also being the second reboot of the series, following the 2011 Mortal Kombat title. With a rich and complex narrative that spans various dimensions and timelines, the series has masterfully woven its plotlines together, and this new installment promises to continue the tradition.