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'Karate Kid' Ralph Macchio Waxes Nostalgic at TriBeCa Screening

By DNAinfo Staff on July 20, 2012 8:29am

By Stephanie Keith

DNAinfo Reporter/Producer

TRIBECA — Hi-ya!

Fans of the classic film “The Karate Kid” packed the 92nd Street Y Thursday night for a showing of the 1984 blockbuster, followed by a Q&A with the movie's star, Ralph Macchio.

The screening drew hordes crane-kicking devotees, who got the chance hear “Daniel-san" reflect on the film’s staying power nearly three decades after its release.

“Maybe 10, 15 years ago I would have rolled my eyes,” Macchio said of what’s its like to always be associated with the movie.

“But as I get younger,” he laughed, “I now embrace the legacy of a film that connected with the world.”

Macchio, now 50, hung around after the discussion to pose for pictures with adoring fans and sign “Karate Kid” memorabilia.

One man came to the screening with a still from the movie that he Photoshopped himself in, while another boasted pictures of himself posing at landmarks featured in the film.

“The movie still means a lot to me,” said Mary Werntz, who came to the showing with her roommate Salma Shaw. “Salma and I were holding hands at the end of the movie … I’m still crying and shaking.”

Werntz added that the movie’s message has been a source of inspiration for her through the years.

“I’m an immigrant to this country and can relate to ‘The Karate Kid’ because he is, too. And he’s an underdog who accomplishes everything he set out to do.”