Jeff Imada

Stunt Coordinator. Action Choreographer. 2nd Unit Director.

Since 1978, Jeff Imada has amassed over 400 credits in feature films, TV shows, commercials, and music videos as a 2nd Unit Director, Stunt Coordinator, Fight Choreographer, Technical Advisor, Stuntman, and/or Actor.  

Imada’s best known work as fight and stunt coordinator include Furious Seven (2015), Hanna (2011), The Book of Eli (2010), The Bourne Ultimatum (2007) and The Bourne Supremacy (2004), Fight Club (1999), and Blade (1998). Over the past twenty-five years, he has worked alongside directors such as John Carpenter, David Fincher, The Coen Brothers, and Tony Scott, and choreographed or appeared alongside Matt Damon, Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, Denzel Washington, Brandon Lee, Nicolas Cage, Steven Seagal, Wesley Snipes, Clint Eastwood, Eddie Murphy, and countless others.

 Jeff’s work in the entertainment world is uniquely enhanced by his martial arts training. He started practicing in 1970 with Tae Kwon Do and Japanese Kempo.  In 1973, he met the legendary Dan Inosanto (Bruce Lee’s protégé and colleague) and has been training with him ever since in numerous styles.  Jeff currently holds the rank of Senior Full Instructor with Inosanto and is one of the few certified instructors in Jeet Kune Do (comprised of 27 different styles of martial arts) and the Filipino/Indonesian martial arts.  The martial arts has become a way of life for Jeff. He applies Bruce Lee’s ideology of experimentation and self-discovery with everything he gets involved with in his life.  Jeff has traveled and taught all over the U.S. and in various countries throughout Europe.  He has also taught seminars and individuals in the F.B.I., Secret Service, Navy Seals, and various police departments including the CHP, L.A. County Sheriffs, and LAPD.  Jeff is also a Defensive Tactics Consultant to the LAPD.

 Jeff’s physicality, expertise in the martial arts, and varied interests in gymnastics, off-road 4 wheel driving, dirt biking, scuba diving and other extreme sports, has allowed him to excel at performing stunts in film and TV.  This quickly led him to work his way up to becoming a Stunt Coordinator and 2nd Unit Director.   

Jeff is often responsible for setting up camera angles and shooting many action sequences he works on that require an understanding of visual kinetic action.  His expertise and innate understanding of camera angles, lenses, editing, and story telling help make the action/stunts become an integral part of the story, enmeshing it with the non-action and dialogue scenes.

Jeff served as a board member with the SAG Stunt & Safety Committee, is a board member with the Taurus World Stunt Awards, and is a member of Stunts Unlimited. He won Best Fight Sequence at the first ever Annual Stuntman’s Awards in 1985 as is the recipient of the 2007 Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Stunt Ensemble in a Motion Picture for his work on The Bourne Ultimatum.

Jeff is also noted for bringing public attention and popularity to the Filipino Balisong (or Butterfly) Knife and the telescopic baton that he designed and manufactured. These were profiled in a number of feature films. As a published author, Imada has written THE BALISONG MANUAL and THE ADVANCED BALISONG MANUALJeff has also appeared numerous times on the cover of INSIDE KUNG FU, FIGHTING STARS, BLACK BELT, and other martial arts magazines all over the world.

Copyright Jeff Imada, 2016