Tom Hardy channeled a little bit of Bane from “The Dark Knight Rises” and a whole lot of Tommy Conlon from “Warrior” when he entered a martial arts tournament over the weekend. As reported by The Guardian, Harder was a surprise competitor at the 2022 Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Open Championship in Milton Keynes, England. The actor entered the competition under his real name, Edward Hardy, and won the gold prize.
“Everyone recognized him, but he was very humble and was happy to take time out for people to take photographs with him,” a spokesperson for the event told The Guardian. “It was a real pleasure to have him compete at our event.”
Hardy faced off against martial arts veteran Danny Appleby in the tournament’s semi-final match. Appleby called Hardy a “genuinely a really nice guy.”
“I was shell-shocked,” Appleby said about Hardy’s showing up to the event unannounced. “[Hardy] said, ‘Just forget it’s me and do what you would normally do.’”
Appleby continued, “He’s a really strong guy… You wouldn’t think it with him being a celebrity. 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’s victory in Milton Keynes was not his only martial arts win of the year. As The Guardian notes: “In August, the actor won the REORG Open Jiu-Jitsu Championship in Wolverhampton, a tournament aimed at raising funds for military personnel, veterans and emergency service workers. Hardy is a trustee for REORG, a charity teaching jiu-jitsu to those with serious injuries, or who are suffering from PTSD and depression.”
Next up for Hardy in the acting world is a third “Venom” movie, which he is currently developing the story for with screenwriter Kelly Marcel. Hardy is also starring in “Havoc,” an upcoming Netflix action movie from “The Raid” director Gareth Evans.