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Much like Rocky before it, Creed looks like it's ready to show us what the power of positive thinking, proper mentoring, and a good right hook, can do for a fighter willing to learn. And from what we're hearing from the grapevine, it's already inspired some work on a sequel – maybe even two.
Apparently, Creed has been screening for those in the know, and it's been impressing everyone who's seen it. Roger Friedman, he of Showbiz 411 fame, has heard the buzz and it's no surprise to one of the film's producers, the legendary Irwin Winkler. Through some good old fashioned grilling during their chance meeting, Winkler admitted that the positive feelings surrounding the re-teaming of Fruitvale Station collaborators Michael B. Jordan and Ryan Coogler have translated into some preliminary work being done on Creed II - and if the powers that be are as bullish as Friedman says they are, Creed III is in line as well.
This is definitely a step in the right direction, as the initial announcement of Creed's inception was met with the usual amount of trepidation. But with the forces of Jordan and Coogler attaching themselves to the project, the prognosis turned around rather quickly for the spin-off from the Rocky series before it. Though all of the sequel talk does have us worried that MGM and Sony may be getting a little too ahead of themselves, particularly in today's market when a lot of franchises plot out sequels before they even hit the market. Still, we can't blame the pair of studios for being as excitable as they are, as they may need the Creed magic to last them for a while.
Considering that MGM's holy trinity of franchises are also Sony's biggest ticket towards box office gold, it really sucks when two of their three trump cards are in danger. With Robocop in a less than promising holding pattern, and Spectre possibly ending the relationship between James Bond and Sony/MGM, Creed's tactic of building brand recognition off of its relationship to the Rocky franchise is what's probably making it a high priority with executives and producers alike.
Sequel talk aside, Creed looks like it's a fantastic, yet organic continuation of the Rocky legacy. While Rocky Balboa was heralded as a great way to bring the series back to form, seeing Creed build itself off of that film's lead would be a perfect way to continue the series. If the speculation on Rocky Balboa's possible health crisis is true, this is exactly the path the series would find itself taking.
Whatever direction Creed decides to move in, it's good to hear that the buzz is so good that the studio is thinking about rolling the dice again. If they can get Ryan Coogler and Michael B. Jordan involved again, that's double the money right there. But if there's no story worth telling, then Sony and MGM should retire their fighter of a franchise, before it approaches Rocky V levels of horror. We'll see for ourselves whether Creed is worth all of the hype on November 25th.