Olivier Gruner is a French actor, producer, screenwriter and director. He is a former world kickboxing champion.
Olivier Gruner was born August 2, 1960 in Paris. His father and older brother worked as a surgeon and his younger brother was an engineer. Olivier was fascinated by martial arts at the age of 11, after watching movies with Bruce Lee, and began studying Shotokan karate, then boxing and kickboxing. At 18, instead of going to university, as many expected, he joined the paratroopers, the French version of the SEALs, where he served for 4 years. He spent most of that time in Senegal, Africa. There he learned scuba diving, learned how to skydive, learned the basics of mountaineering and many other things an elite troop soldier needs. In 1981, Olivier left the Army to pursue kickboxing professionally. To pay his tuition, he worked part-time as a bouncer, ski instructor, trainer and ski elevator operator. He began to fight professionally as a kickboxer in France in 1984. After 10 fights he became the French middleweight champion. By 1985, his success in the ring allowed him to fully concentrate on his kickboxing career, and in 1986 he became the World Middleweight Kickboxing Champion. After fulfilling his dream of becoming a world champion, Olivier pursued careers as a model and actor. He finds time in his busy schedule to fly a helicopter, go skiing, skydiving and even try his hand at surfing. Despite the end of his sporting career, Olivier has continued to train hard, maintaining and developing the skills acquired in the military and during his career as a kickboxer.
Olivier Gruner is involved in creating kickboxing training films and his own line of sportswear, O.G. (Olivie Gruner).