Sylvester Stallone reiterates frustration over Rocky rights and Creed III

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Sylvester Stallone reveals that plans for a new Rocky film were derailed by the long-standing rights issues around the series.

Sylvester Stallone has stepped away from playing Rocky Balboa, perhaps for good. But the creator and star of the long-running boxing series continues to battle with the longtime producers of the Rocky and Creed franchises, Irvin Winkler and his son David, over the rights to the series.

Stallone’s continued lack of rights over the Rocky franchise is the key issue here, with the Winklers retaining control and financial ownership over the films since the first movie’s release in 1976.

This is an issue that Stallone has returned to before, most recently this summer when he unleashed a barrage of no-holds barred social media posts aimed at the Winklers. Stallone is out and about at the moment promoting his new TV series, The Tulsa King and has offered an update on the rights issue. Whilst nothing has changed, he does reveal that the rift between himself and the Winklers ended the chances of getting a new Rocky film made when he asked  “can we change the playing field a little bit? Level it out? Can’t I get a piece of what I created all these years ago?” and was presumably knocked back.


Stallone confirmed that he has made amends with Dolph Lundgren following the surprise announcement of Drago spin-off movie almost a year ago – an announcement that Lundgren somewhat walked back when it was revealed that Stallone was not part of the project. The last we heard, that project still hasn’t been officially greenlit, so it seems to be a case of wait and see.

Finally, the actor had some choice words to say about the upcoming Creed III, the first film in the series that won’t feature Stallone. Michael B Jordan will star and make his directorial feature debut but predictably, Stallone doesn’t hold much goodwill towards the project, stating of the movie “that’s a regretful situation because I know what it could have been. It was taken in a direction that is quite different than I would’ve taken it. It’s a different philosophy – Irwin Winkler’s and Michael B Jordan’s. I wish them well, but I’m much more of a sentimentalist. I like my heroes getting beat up, but I just don’t want them going into that dark space. I just feel people have enough darkness”.

Creed III releases next March. Stallone presumably will not be the first in line to see it when it does.


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