Sean Kanan (born November 2, 1966) is an American actor and TV Host, best known for his portrayals of A. J. Quartermaine on General Hospital, Deacon Sharpe on The Bold and the Beautiful and The Young and the Restless, and Mike Barnes in The Karate Kid Part III.
Life and Career
Kanan was born Sean Perelman to Dale and Michele Perelman in Cleveland, Ohio. His family later relocated to New Castle, Pennsylvania. He attended Mercersburg Academy in Pennsylvania, Boston University and UCLA where he earned a degree in political science. While a struggling actor attending Boston University, Sean Kanan was once a bouncer at a bar called The Stadium in Dorchester Massachusetts.
Kanan received his big break working for Academy Award-winning director John Avildsen in the 1989 film The Karate Kid Part III. The following year, he starred on the Fox television series The Outsiders. In 1993, Kanan joined the ABC soap opera General Hospital as A. J. Quartermaine and was nominated for an award in the Outstanding Newcomer category by Soap Opera Digest. He left the series abruptly in 1997 following his struggle with alcoholism.
In 1999, Kanan joined the cast of the NBC soap opera Sunset Beach as Jude Cavanaugh and remained with the show until its cancellation later that year. He wrote and executive-produced Chasing Holden, distributed by Lionsgate, which starred DJ Qualls. In November 2000, he joined the cast of the CBS soap opera The Bold and the Beautiful as Deacon Sharpe, playing a character that was originally conceived as a short-term villain. In 2002, rumors surfaced that the actor was fired, but he remained with the show until early 2005 when he opted to go on a recurring status, and he last appeared February 22, 2005.
Upon his departure from The Bold and the Beautiful, Kanan starred in several feature films and competed in the third season of the Italian version of Dancing with the Stars in 2006. On July 10, 2009, Kanan reprised his role as Deacon Sharpe on the CBS soap opera The Young and the Restless.
While appearing on The Young and the Restless, he starred in the 2009 Indie film Abracadabra, which was directed by Julie Pacino (Al Pacino's daughter) and was screened at the Cannes Film Festival. In May 2010, Kanan appeared in My Trip to the Dark Side, written and directed by Shane Stanley. He later starred in the 2011 sequel My Trip Back to the Dark Side. That same year, Kanan wrote "The Modern Gentleman; Cooking and Entertaining with Sean Kanan", published by Dunham Books.
Upon leaving The Young and the Restless in January 2012, Kanan reprised his role as Deacon Sharpe on The Bold and the Beautiful. He appeared on and off from May until September 2012. Following his departure from the show, Kanan was reported to be returning to General Hospital. On October 29, 2012, Kanan returned to the role of A. J. Quartermaine on General Hospital after a 15-year absence. The actor was convinced that his past issues with alcohol abuse would be the reason he would never return to the soap. He was let go in early 2014, and expressed disappointment in what the writing team had come up for his character. The actor then returned to The Bold and the Beautiful as Deacon Sharpe, first airing June 13, 2014. Upon being rehired, Kanan noted that Deacon is the favorite of all the characters he played.
The Karate Kid Part III
As a teenager, years prior to his role in The Karate Kid Part III, Kanan trained in boxing before switching to Shotokan Karate and kickboxing at age 13, achieving green belt by the time he was cast. Being a fan of the first two films for years, (having seen them both ten times each before learning of the plans for a second sequel) Kanan auditioned for the role and wanted to make sure that he stood out, so he intimidated Ralph Macchio into a corner and wouldn't let up. Despite someone else having been cast instead, Kanan was called back to replace the actor, who did not work out. Sean Kanan beat out 2,000 other martial arts hopefuls for the part of Mike Barnes. During the filming of the movie he trained in Shitō-ryū at a school run by Karate master Fumio Demura, and with stunt coordinator and Tang Soo Do master Pat E. Johnson. During filming, Kanan trained extensively, eventually getting injured when he performed a stunt that required him to lunge forward and land on his stomach for 20 takes. After taking aspirin for four days to deal with the residual pain, Kanan fell unconscious. At a hospital, he was diagnosed with internal bleeding caused by a torn abdominal wall, the aspirin having exacerbated the bleeding. After an emergency surgery, Kanan returned to filming a few days later with "staples up and down [his] stomach". Despite the filmmakers offering to have a stunt double perform his complex Karate stunts, Kanan felt that he had trained too hard to not follow through and did all of his own stunts regardless, except for one where his car is almost hit by an Amtrak train. Mike Barnes' final dialogue (wherein he triumphantly jeers Daniel into getting up for the "Sudden Death" portion of their grand championship match) was not in the screenplay, but rather ad-libbed by Sean Kanan.
Sean was married to Athena Ubach from 1999 until 2001. Sean went onto marry Michele Kanan née Vega in July 2012. He has described his marriage to Michele as happy, stating that she is "the love of his life". Sean has a daughter by his prior relationship and Michele has four children of her own. Politically, Kanan is involved with the Anti-Defamation League. In May 2016 Kanan said that he supported Donald Trump for President of the United States.