Joe Taslim is an actor, martial artist, athlete, and model from Indonesia. He garnered fame for his breakthrough portrayal of Jaka in the critically-acclaimed 2011 film, ‘The Raid’. A native of the province of South Sumatra, Taslim began training in various martial art forms quite early in his life. He later exclusively focused on judo and became a professional judo athlete. Joe Taslim represented Indonesia for the first time in 1997. He won numerous medals as a member of the national team until his retirement in 2009. As a model, he appeared in several magazines and participated in various commercial campaigns. In 2008, he made his acting debut in the film ‘Karma’. Following the success of ‘The Raid’, he was cast in HBO Asia’s first horror film ‘Dead Mine’. His first international project was the sixth instalment in the Fast & Furious cinematic franchise, which was released in 2013. That year, he portrayed Yamada in the drama film ‘La Tahzan’, a performance that earned him the Indonesian Movie Award for Best Actor in 2014.
Since he was a child, Joe Taslim has been interested in martial arts and received training in disciplines like pencak silat, wushu, judo, taekwondo, and shotokan. Eventually, he chose to pursue an athletic career in judo. At the national level, he won multiple gold medals for himself. This led to his inclusion in the national judo team. Representing Indonesia from 1997 to 2009, he garnered a gold medal at the 1999 South East Asia Judo Championships and a silver medal at the 2007 Southeast Asian Games. However, his athletic career abruptly ended when he sustained an injury that compelled him to retire.
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Joe Taslim’s photogenic features and charming personality helped him launch a modelling career. He was featured in various magazines and took part in several commercial campaigns. His made his debut as an actor in 2008, with the film ‘Karma’. His next film was the 2009 action crime-drama ‘Rasa’, in which he worked alongside the likes of Christian Sugiono, Pevita Eileen Pearce, Wulan Guritno, and Alex Komang.
Joe Taslim has been a long-time fan of the works of Welsh filmmaker Gareth Evans, especially his 2009 martial arts film ‘Merantau’. He reached out to Evans through Facebook and expressed his desire to work in his next project. While going through Taslim’s page, Evans saw a picture of him in a SWAT uniform and decided that he would be the ideal choice to portray Sergeant Jaka, a member of the elite special forces unit that raids an apartment block in Jakarta’s slums to eliminate a notorious crime lord, in his next film, ‘The Raid’. Also starring Iko Uwais, Donny Alamsyah, and Yayan Ruhian, the movie was released in 2011 and opened to positive responses from critics and audience alike. It won several awards and has come to be hailed as an important milestone in the action genre.
In the 2012 English-language Indonesian horror film ‘Dead Mine’, Joe Taslim played a mercenary named Djoko. ‘The Raid’s success brought him international attention. This eventually led to his casting as Jah in ‘Fast & Furious 6’. Joe Taslim received critical acclaim for his performance in the 2013 drama film ‘La Tahzan’ (Don’t Be Sad). Besides winning an Indonesian Movie Award, he was nominated for a Maya Actor for Best Actor in a Leading Role (2013) and an Indonesian Film Festival award for Best Leading Actor (2013) for his performance. Taslim has also received Indonesia Kids' Choice Award for Best Actor in 2015 and the Best APAN Star Award in 2016.
He portrayed secondary antagonist Anderson Le / Manas in ‘Star Trek Beyond’ (2016), the male protagonist Martin in the romance drama ‘Surat Kecil untuk Tuhan’ (2017), a former triad enforcer in the action-thriller ‘The Night Comes for Us’ (2018), and celebrity policeman Tegar Satria in action-comedy ‘Hit & Run’ (2019). In 2019, he began playing Li Yong in the Cinemax martial arts series ‘Warrior’. In July 2019, it was announced that Joe Taslim is going to portray Bi-Han/Sub-Zero in the Mortal Kombat reboot film. He is also set to appear in the upcoming South Korean action film ‘The Swordsman’.
Family & Personal Life
Born on June 23, 1981, in Palembang, South Sumatra, Indonesia, Joe Taslim is the son of Maria Taslim and Mardjuki Taslim. His family is Chinese-Indonesian. He has a brother named Peter.
In 2004, Joe Taslim exchanged wedding vows with Juliet or Ju-Li, who is an entrepreneur, beauty and fashion expert, and blogger. She is the founder of the Onnie Studio, also known as the Korean Nails and Lashes Studio. The couple has three children together, daughters, Mikaveli and Kaara Ofelia, and son, Hiero Joe.