Martial Artist (38 years) – Filmmaker, Fight Choreographer, Actor/Stunt Fighter & MMA Practictioner
2008: John is a Martial Arts Masters Hall of Fame inductee with such notables as UFC Hall of Fame Champion Randy Couture and the legendary Bill “Superfoot” Wallace.
Training: Black Belt 5th Degree Shoto Kan –East Coast Karate Advanced Rank – Gonis Pankration,Judo-Karate, Rickson Gracie – Kron Gracie Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Wah Lum Kung Fu, Inst. Level, Boston Chinese Wushu Research Institute- Team Capt./ Asst. Inst.
Competition: John is a former New England Karate Grand Champion and New England AAU National and Regional Team Member with multi-time AAU Gold, Silver and Bronze medal wins and is the recipient of more than 100 top 3 finishes in combined forms, fighting, weapons and numerous other semi and full contact fights and Jiu-Jitsu (Submission wrestling ) matches.
U.S. Marine Corps Instructor/Contractor: Certified – Specialized Tactical Training P.S.D. Personal Security Detachment – High Risk Protection.
MMA (Mixed Martial Arts): Training, research and information exchanges continue at camps in Southern California and abroad with early training in submission wrestling under Gokor Chivichyan and “Judo” Gene Lebell and South Florida’s ATT (American Top Team), one of the Worlds Elite MMA Fight Camps. John holds full Coaching/Black Belt accreditation w/ Kimekai MMA. John was istrumental in formulating the syllabus at Kimekai MMA w/ Head Coach Ed Bavelock. Ed & John have trained and studied together since the 1980s. Hong Kong Movie Break: In 1989, John’s longtime friend, and film mentor, Hong Kong Action Star Donnie Yen arranges for John to be flown in and meet with Hong Kong Action Film Pioneer, Yuen Woo-Ping (The Matrix, Kill Bill, Crouching Tiger ..) John is immediately cast to fight Donnie and assist with fight choreography becoming one of the first western members to work for the Yuen brothers clan.
Hong Kong to Hollywood - Mixed Martial Roots: John has been called upon by his friend Donnie in a collaboration of works spanning more than 2 decades that would see John become a lead member of the Donnie Yen fight choreography team and working on some of Donnie’s most important films “Blade 2” with Wesley Snipes, The Oscar nominated “Hero” staring Jet Li (feature Donnie), Alicia Silverstone’s “Stormbreaker” “Twins Effect” (Jackie Chan Guest Star) and the MMA charged “Flashpoint”. “Twins Effect” and “Flashpoint” set the stage for John to work under Donnie and contribute select UFC style MMA into the choreography. The action proved ground breaking with Donnie's brand going on to win Best Action at the prestigious Taiwanese Golden Horse Awards. Donnie Yen interview for watching Movie, “John Salvitti is my friend of over 20 years, he was in “Tiger Cage”. He’s been studying Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) for 15 years. It’s fate that brought us together.”
Journey on: “Don’t give up on your dreams or your dreams will give up on you.” This is a quote from one of the great teachers in sports and life, “Coach” John Wooden. My family and I are fortunate to have met coach on many an occasion. The quote takes me back to my childhood when “Sensei” Lou Hopkins, would take us all to Chinatown on weekends to watch Kung Fu movies. And if you had no money, Sensei wouldn’t leave you behind as long as you trained hard and dreamed of becoming a champion. Those are the days that molded me.