Jean Claude Van Damme is stepping back into the ring for a real fight sometime later this year: a muay thai sans elbows affair against a Thai boxer by the name of Somluck Kamsing. Rumors have been floating around regarding this for the past few months but the above video is the first time Van Damme has officially confirmed everything, right down to his wacky scheme to tie it all into publicity for an upcoming movie and the multiple reality shows he’s working on :
Van Damme spoke to the press about his plans for the year, indicating that he will have three reality shows this year – one related to casting, one behind the scenes on a Van Damme film project called The Tower, and one that follows Van Damme as he trains for his fight with Somluck.
The third show will follow both Van Damme in his training and Somluck as he trains in Thailand, culminating in the actual fight between the two men, to take place in either September or October in Macau, China (a change from the original plan to hold the fight in Las Vegas). Ever the self-promoter, Van Damme’s The Tower will also be released at that time, so that in a one month span, Van Damme’s different shows will wrap up, his new film will be released, and the Somluck fight will air.
Just a reminder: JCVD is 49 years old and hasn’t competed in martial arts since 1980. His opponent Somluck Kamsing is no spring chicken either at 37, but has an gold medal in boxing from the 1996 Olympics and also competed in the 2000 and 2004 Olympics as a featherweight. He’s apparently some sort of Thai celebrity now though so he might have gone a bit soft. Soft enough for Van Damme to beat? Probably not, which is why I gotta give Jean Claude some props for having the balls to actually go through with this.