Sylvester Stallone Recalls Brutal Injury He Sustained While Filming Rocky Balboa And Explains What It Taught Him

Sylvester Stallone in Rocky Balboa
(Image credit: MGM)

Even though Sylvester Stallone said he’s done playing Rocky, the actor is still sharing stories from back in the day. He starred in some of the most beloved sports movies of all time as the underdog-turned-superstar boxer Rocky Balboa, and then in the Creed movies became Adonis Creed’s mentor. Stallone also hasn’t shied away from the challenges of making these movies, recently revealing a brutal injury he got while filming and the lessons it taught him.

The Rocky actor has been sharing a lot about the making of these movies and the challenges he's faced. He posted a message about not having the legal rights to Rocky and Creed earlier this summer and has also said he has “zero ownership” over the franchise. Recently, he shared an Instagram post about the physical challenges of filming Rocky, detailing a foot injury he had during the final Rocky movie. 

This may seem silly to some people, but I keep these as a reminder. When I was doing the last Rocky Balboa, where I was fighting Mason Dixon and all that, I broke two toes, broke them in half. I couldn’t even get my foot in my shoe. The entire choreography and training for the film I had to cut the opening of my shoe so my swollen foot could get in it and we kept moving forward, kept moving forward. So, I keep this as a reminder that when it hurts, sometimes that’s a good omen because when it comes too easy it usually is not very, very good. Anyway, keep punching.

And keep punching he did. Counting the Creed movies, there are eight installments in the franchise. While the Rocky movies vary in how well-loved they are by the fans, interest in the character has never waned. This started with Stallone's persistence and will to keep moving forward as he stated in this post. 

It’s touching to see that Stallone has kept these shoes as a memory of the hard work he put into the franchise that helped build him a legacy in Hollywood. It’s also inspiring to hear him talk about how much he has persevered to be successful in both the Rocky movies and throughout his career. 

Along with the hard times have come the fun times. Stallone has also posted funny throwbacks to writing the first Rocky. After the first one, he went on to write, direct and star in others and helped turn Michael B. Jordan into the star of the Creed movies. 

While the iconic character will not be in the upcoming threequel, Stallone has commented on Creed III, wishing them well and telling them to “keep punching.” The movie will mark Michael B. Jordan’s directorial debut and will feature Jonathan Majors as Creed III’s antagonist. While Stallone may be hanging up the gloves, for now, the other actor will be carrying the legacy. As both the star and director of the third movie, Jordan’s experience seem to be mirroring Stallone's.  

Stay tuned to the upcoming movie schedule for more information on the third installment in Creed’s story. Stallone may have hung up the gloves for now, but we will all remember Rocky and just how hard he worked to make one of the greatest underdog stories of all time, both in real life and in the movies. 

Riley Utley
Weekend Editor

Riley Utley is the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. She has written for national publications as well as daily and alt-weekly newspapers in Spokane, Washington, Syracuse, New York and Charleston, South Carolina. She graduated with her master’s degree in arts journalism and communications from the Newhouse School at Syracuse University. Since joining the CB team she has covered numerous TV shows and movies -- including her personal favorite shows Ted Lasso and The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. She also has followed and consistently written about everything from Taylor Swift to Fire Country, and she's enjoyed every second of it.