Born in Seoul in 1946, Kim’s father died in the Korean War and his mother struggled to raise he and his brother. Kim himself became one of the youngest Tae Kwon Do black belts in Korea at age 13. He eventually moved to Buenos Aires and then New York where he was temporarily homeless, then worked as a janitor and a Tae Kwon Do teacher. In 1978, he moved to Orlando when a friend sold him his school: basically 10 students, and a small room with a punching bag. Through a whole hell of a lot of hard work he eventually bulit a chain of nine successful Tae Kwon Do schools, sometimes referred to as the “McDonald’s of Tae Kwon Do.” He nearly bankrupted his studios, however, when he leveraged them to put up $1 million to produce The Miami Connection, in which he starred. When he first saw a cut of the movie he was so depressed that he went home and slept for 48 hours. He then bought out his two partners, read eight books on filmmaking, and reshot, reedited, and redid the film. He then began a serious sales campaign for the movie, and eventually sold it to Manson International for about $100,000. When it came out, it played in only three theaters. Nevertheless, Kim continues to run his Tae Kwon Do schools to this day and he is also a successful motivational speaker and author.