As it turns out, life imitates art when it comes to Tom Hardy and his Brazilian jiu-jitsu skills. The actor channeled his role as an MMA fighter in 2011’s Warrior on Saturday (September 17th) while making a surprise appearance at a martial arts tournament in a small town in England and taking home the victory, reports The Guardian. It was his second win of a jiu-jitsu competition since late August.
Hardy entered the 2022 Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Open Championship at a high school gym in Milton Keynes, England under his real name Edward Hardy (Thomas is his middle name). Unlike in Warrior, however, the blue belt managed to win all of his matches.
Speaking to The Guardian, a spokesperson for the tournament called Hardy a “really nice guy” and added, “Everyone recognized him but he was very humble and was happy to take time out for people to take photographs with him. It was a real pleasure to have him compete at our event.”
This wasn’t the first time that Hardy has turned up unannounced at a jiu-jitsu competition. In late August, Hardy won the REORG Open Jiu-Jitsu Championship in Wolverhampton, England, where one of his opponents compared him to his Bane character in The Dark Knight Rises.
“He’s a really strong guy,” Danny Appleby told Teesside Live. “I’ve done about six tournaments and I’ve been on the podium in every one. But he’s probably the toughest competitor I’ve had — he certainly lived up to his Bane character, that’s for sure.”
Hardy doesn’t just practice Brazilian jiu-jitsu, but is also a trustee for REORG, a charity teaching the martial art to those with life-altering physical injuries or who are suffering from PTSD and depression.
As for his main job, Hardy is preparing to star in the third Venom movie and Havoc, a Netflix thriller from The Raid director Gareth Evans.