Sylvester Stallone may be hanging up the boxing gloves for good as he indicated Creed II may be his final appearance as Philadelphia boxer Rocky Balboa.
In an Instagram post, the actor shared a video taken on his final day on set of the sequel, with director Stephen Caple, Jr, and star Michael B. Jordan where he announced he would stepping back to allow Jordan's Adonis Creed carry the franchise forward for a new generation.
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I am reposting this because there was a technical difficulty. I just want to thank everyone around the whole wide World for taking the Rocky family into their hearts for over 40 years. It’s been my Ultimate privilege to have been able to create and play this meaningful character. Though it breaks my heart, Sadly all things must pass... and end. I love you Kind and generous people , and The most wonderful thing of all , is that ROCKY will never die because he lives on in you ....
"This is probably my last rodeo because what I thought happened, and has happened, I never expected. I thought Rocky was done in 2006. And I was very happy with that," explained Stallone in the video. "Then all of a sudden this young man [Michael B. Jordan] presented himself and the whole story changed. It went on to a new generation. New problems. New adventures. And I couldn't be happier as I step back because my story has been told, there's a whole new world that's going to be opening up with the audience with this generation. Now you, have to carry the mantle."
Stallone had created the character of Rocky Balboa in 1976, writing the script for the film as well as starring as the title character. The film went on to win Best Picture with Stallone nominated for Best Actor and Best Original Screenplay. With the movie catapulting him into international superstardom, Stallone would go on to write and star in the subsequent five sequels, as well as directing all but 1990's Rocky V.
After writing, directing, and starring in 2006's Rocky Balboa, Stallone retired the character and franchise before it was revived by filmmaker Ryan Coogler in 2015's Creed. Stallone would reprise the role of Rocky, receiving a nomination for Best Supporting Actor. Creed II marks Stallone's eighth, and reportedly final, appearance as the character.
Creed II is directed by Stephen Caple Jr. (The Land) from a script written by Sylvester Stallone and Juel Taylor. The film stars Michael B. Jordan, Sylvester Stallone, Tessa Thompson, Dolph Lundgren, Florian Munteanu, and Phylicia Rashad. The film is out in theaters everywhere now.