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Mark Alan Dacascos (born February 26, 1964 in Honolulu, Hawaii) is an actor and martial arts expert. He won numerous karate and various styles of kung fu championships between the ages of 7 and 18 .
Beginning in January 2005, Dacascos has portrayed “the Chairman” on Food Network’s television series Iron Chef America. This role was previously played by Takeshi Kaga in the original Japanese Iron Chef, and Dacascos claims an in-character relationship to Kaga as his nephew.
His father, Al Dacascos, is from Hawaii. He is a martial arts instructor of Filipino, Spanish, and Han Chinese ancestry. His mother, Moriko McVey is of Irish and Japanese ancestry. His stepmother is award winning martial artist Malia Bernal.
He is married to actress Julie Condra.
Dacascos became an actor after being discovered walking down the street in San Francisco’s Chinatown by two men working for director Wayne Wang. Though Dacascos’ first scenes ended up on the cutting room floor, he has gone on to establish a film and television career mostly playing martial artists. He also performed in three video games: voice acting in Stranglehold, live acting in Wing Commander IV: The Price of Freedom and digitally recreating The Chairman in the new Iron Chef video game for Wii. He was nominated for the Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actor in 2002 for his role in Brotherhood of the Wolf, which was a box office success in the United States.
He has also appeared in the short-lived television series The Crow: Stairway to Heaven which was a follow-up to the 1994 film The Crow.