Boni Yanagisawa (pronounced just like "Bonnie") lives in Hollywood, California and is a proud member of V10 Women Stunt Professionals.
Born May 1, 1971 in Huntington Beach, California, she is the youngest of three siblings, brother Todd and sister Denise. Her father, Wilfred Yanagisawa, Japanese, born and raised in Honokaa, Big Island (Hawaii) moved to Southern California when he was nineteen to start his own landscaping business. Her mother, Beverly Yanagisawa, Caucasion, was born and raised in Pasadena, California. Boni's father has always been a role model to her. He is a hard working, dedicated, humble, family man. Boni grew up seeing her father work 7 days a week, early morning to late night, running his nursery and landscaping business. While her mother worked hard taking care of the family.
Boni was a girl scout, cheerleader, drill team, softball player, ASB, homecoming queen and Miss Lake Elsinore. Chores and hard work were understood. Boni studied hard and planned to take over the family business along with her brother. She operated her father's nursery until she realized she had dreams of her own and has always believed that life is what you make of it. She decided to go in a different direction which was a difficult for her father to understand and was hard on their relationship. Boni had an interest in martial arts since she was a young girl, but her father always felt that fighting was not a sport for girls. But the discipline of the Martial arts were a part of the Yanagisawa family history.
Boni's great-uncle, Harry Ishisaka, brought Aikido to California from Hawaii. Aikido was his way of life. Harry Ishisaka was Steven Segal's first Sensei. At the age 20, Boni decided it was time for her to study the art that will teacher her more about her heritage. Her family name, Yanagisawa, is royalty Samurai. Martial arts helped Boni grow in many aspects of her life. It changed her outlook on life and opened her eyes to opportunities. Martial arts is not an end, but a means to an end.
In 1995, Boni, co-owner, opened a Dojo (karate school) in La Costa, California. Working two jobs and starting her business, left her with very little time to do anything else. She later began competing in martial arts tournaments. Her success led her to the film industry. In 1997, she decided to sell her business and move to LA. In 1998, she became a member of "Team Kani." Competing Internationally, she has won numerous titles...2000 Master Hall of Fame, 1999 NBL Hall of Fame.
Boni's Sensei (teacher), Richard Rabago, trained her in traditional katas, sword, naginata, bo, kamas and has guided her toward a career in films and television. She owes much of her success to Sensei Richard Rabago. With the support of Boni's good friend, Marcus Young, she began working on stunt performances and choreographed fight sequences. Meeting Bill Ryusaki through martial arts tournaments, she was offered a job in teaching at his Dojo in Chatsworth, CA. Taking this job brought her to the San Fernando Valley, where she would begin her career in stunts.
The film industry went through a slow period for stuntwomen. Boni decided to move to Hawaii and work for Aloha Airlines as a flight attendant. This allowed her to fly the mainland flights to California. In 2002, Boni returned to LA and loves her life as a working stuntwoman and actress.
Boni has worked on recent films like Priest, Green Hornet, Zookeeper, Iron Man 2, Year One, The Hangover, Youth In Revolt, Crank 2, Superhero, Smokin' Aces, The Spirit, Meet Dave, Get Smart, Live Free or Die Hard, Transformers, Grind House, Mr. Brooks, Blades Of Glory, Fast & Furious Tokyo, Rent, Species III, Charlies Angels: Full Throttle, Hulk, SpiderMan 2, & Big Fish.
Her television credits include The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Pretty Little Liars, The Pacific, Numb3rs, NCIS LA, Eastwick, CSI Miami, Dollhouse, CSI, Joey, Boston Legal, Without A Trace, CSI NY, Reno 911, Alias, Star Trek Enterprise, Angel, Buffy, Walker, Texas Ranger, Mortal Kombat Conquest, Boomtown, CSI: Miami, Six Feet Under, and MAD T.V.
Boni has stunt-doubled actresses Demi Moore, Kelly Hu, Zoe Saldana, Troian Bellisario, Maggie Q, Aya Sumika, Lucy Lui, Eva Mendes, Bai Ling, Victoria Justice, Jolene Blalock, Lindsay Price, Moon Bloodgood, Gong Li, Devon Aoki, Alyson Hannigan, Sung Hi Lee, Talisa Soto, Julia Nixon and Vanessa Williams. Boni is a proud member of V10 Stunts, a professional association of stuntwomen.
Martial arts has helped Boni accomplish many goals and dreams in her life and has helped her grow into a much stronger well rounded person. Life is full of challenges, every challenge you accept, gives you growth in every aspect of your life. All accomplishments lead to success. Life is a gift, it is up to the individual to decide how they wish to live it. Live your life to the fullest.