Since 2005, the internet has hailed Chuck Norris as the single most powerful man in the world ― a godlike figure whose essential manliness makes everything possible.
While these “facts” were from the very beginning meant to amuse, capitalizing on the ironic nature of the joke, there are still some Chuck Norris facts that make the basis for his over-the-top awesomeness.
1. His real name is…
First off, while everyone would assume that Chuck’s real name was something in the line of “Charles”, its, in fact, much cooler than that. The full name of the martial arts expert is Carlos Ray Norris, and he was born on March 10, 1940.
2. Chuck Norris remains undefeated since 1968
The big part of Norris’ image lays in the fact that he hasn’t lost an official fight for more than half a century. Having lost all ten of his matches prior to 1968, he still holds a record of 168 wins, ten defeats, and two ties.
3. Chun Kuk Do ― Chuck’s own martial art
Translated as “The Universal Way”, Chun Kuk Do is a hybrid Korean martial art style patented by none other than Chuck Norris himself, who served in the Air Force in Korea as a military policeman. It is a karate-based style which draws much of its influence from Tang Soo Do ― a traditional Korean art of fighting, implemented into military training.
4. Chuck Norris entered the film industry with the help of Steve McQueen
Prior to his movie career, Norris was a karate instructor who trained various celebrities during the martial arts craze which came with the emergence of Bruce Lee in Hollywood. Lee became friends with Chuck in 1968 during the World Title Competition, and the two certainly made a bond that would help propel him further into the movie business.
However, it wasn’t until after the future action star started training the already-established actor superstar Steve McQueen, who encouraged Chuck to enter the acting world, that he managed to land his first role in Dean Martin’s film The Wrecking Crew. Take a look at some surprising facts about Steve McQueen here:
5. Silence is a bad sign if you’re around him
By 1985, Chuck Norris had already established himself as the all-American macho superhero with a box-office hit, Code of Silence. While the title is perhaps accidental, he emphasized the importance of the “code of silence” in his instructions for Chun Kuk Do:
“If I have nothing good to say about a person, I will say nothing.” Therefore, if you ever find yourself in his presence, make sure he isn’t too quiet.
6. He made a commercial and was a spokesperson for Blizzard Entertainment’s World Of Warcraft series
Talk about superb marketing. The Texas Ranger himself starred in a 2011 commercial for the online RPG game World of Warcraft, featuring his in-game character who slashes with ease through a number of opponents. Since then he has appeared as a spokesperson for the game and has reportedly enjoyed playing it on a number of occasions.
7. Chuck was the first westerner ever to hold the rank of 8th Degree Black Belt Grand Master in Taekwondo
Being a fervent ambassador of Far Eastern martial arts, Norris holds several other black belts in karate, Tang Soo Do, Judo, as well as Brazillian jiu-jitsu.
He has earned the honor and respect of many Asian masters, most notable of them, of course, being Bruce Lee, at whose funeral Chuck was one of the pallbearers, together with McQueen.
8. Chuck was named an honorary Marine and Texas Ranger
Since his career heavily relied on interpreting roles of military or law enforcement figures, Norris received these titles in 2007 and 2010, respectively, as he continues to enjoy a great deal of respect by these institutions in America.
9. He has his own line of jeans
When he’s not sporting a kimono, Chuck usually prefers denim, so it comes as no surprise that he has his own line of jeans to support his clothing preference. Branded as “Action Jeans”, they are designed and tested to withstand Norris’ well-known roundhouse kick, without an uncomfortable rip in the crotch area.
10. Apart from being a martial arts superstar, Chuck is also a best-selling author
Having become one of pop culture’s favorites, he has long been involved in writing about his life, and with great success.
His books usually revolve around subject matters like martial arts, exercise, philosophy, politics, Christian religion, western novels, and biography, and include titles such as The Secret of Inner Strength: My Story published in 1988, and his second New York Times Best Seller, Black Belt Patriotism: How to Reawaken America which came out in 2008.