When Jessica Chastain was cast for the motion film The Debt she really cared about understanding what it takes to be a Mossad Agent. The Mossad is responsible for intelligence collection, covert operations, and counterterrorism. Part of their training includes intense Krav Maga training, Israeli Tactical Shooting and Aggression Training. Jessica researched online for an authentic Krav Maga Instructor in Los Angeles and she came across our website, KravMagaLA.com. She contacted Roy Elghanayan and shared with him her exciting news of being cast in this film. One thing Jessica wanted to point out from the start was that she wanted to train as if she really was in the Mossad. She did not want to do a cardio version of it. She said “I want to know what real Israeli Krav Maga is. So when I am on set, I can make sure we are keeping the fights as authentic as possible.” She cared about every element in her performance. She had four months to get in fighting shape. In addition, she wanted to gain muscle so her training included weight lifting. Click here to view a short interview with Jessica Chastain about here Krav Maga training with Roy Elghanayan.
Her first month of training focused on studying the basics of Krav Maga, including basic fighting stance, basic kicks, punches, elbows, knees, and the movements and philosophy of real Krav. Then, she learned different Krav Maga combinations that involved different strikes. Jessica’s goal was to master Krav Maga as much as one could in four months. She was not interested in just knowing the moves for her action seances. She truly was interested in developing a set of skills that can work in a real life scenario. The last week of her first month, she went through her first week-long Aggression Training, a very important element in a warriors development that all Israeli Spacial Forces go through.
Her second and third month of training covered different attacks such as grabs, chokes, bear-hugs and counter attacks. Roy wanted to make sure she knew more than five different ways of getting out of an attack. Roy and Jessica knew that sometimes things change on set for different reason and they wanted to make sure Jessica would be ready for any changes. By her third month of training, Jessica had over twelve hours of Aggression Training. Her development as a fighter was showing and her skills were becoming second nature.
Jessica’s last month of training included different takedowns, police control, gun and knife defense, Israeli Tactical Shooting, and choreographing her fight scenes. It was a very intense month for Jessica but also very important, and everything was coming together beautifully. After four months of intense Krav Maga training, Israeli Tactical Shooting, and Aggression Training, Jessica’s performance reached level four (out of seven) in Krav Maga. She truly trained like a warrior from the Israeli Defense Forces. Click here to view Jessica’s fight scene from the movie.
A second scene choreographed by Roy Elghanayan, Click Here.