What would Adrian think? We all know that Sylvester Stallone did extremely physical work in the Rocky films, but it turns out that fighting Dolph Lundgren in the fourth film very nearly killed him, both on screen and off.
In a recent interview with Ain’t It Cool, Stallone was asked about his worst on-set injury, and turns out it was a doozy that came from trading blows with Lundgren. He said:
Well at least he has a sense of humor about it, but jeez Louise. That’s quite the serious condition -- but one that didn’t stop him from doing another handful of Rocky movies, as well as other action flicks, like the Expendables. Puns aside, it’s startling to hear that Dolph Lundgren, who portrayed Russian fighter Ivan Drago, nearly killed Stallone in their fight. I’m eager to see how much Lundgren remembers about the ordeal, especially as we gear up for the next chapter in the saga.
Sylvester Stallone became a household name after appearing Rocky in 1976. Stallone played the titular character, Rocky Balboa, an unsuccessful Philadelphian boxer who seemed to be wasting his life away as a debt collector. Throughout the film we see Rocky’s softer side, including his budding relationship with Adrian (Talia Shire). At the film’s conclusion he faces heavyweight champion Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers) and gets the girl (even though she loses her fancy red hat, and he loses the fight).
That first movie is referenced heavily in the newest addition to the franchise, Creed, which is being released widely throughout the U.S. today. In Creed, Rocky begins coaching Apollo Creed’s son, Adonis Johnson (Michael B. Jordan), helping him focus his street fighting to fit into the rules and regulation of the boxing world. Creed is the first film featuring the character of Rocky Balboa which Stallone did not also co-write.
After hearing Stallone recount his life-threatening injury from Rocky IV, it’s certainly a relief to have the character taking a more passive role in Creed. Having faced so many tough opponents in his life, it’s time for Rocky to rest easy and help a new boxer reach his level of success. And it’s also time for Sylvester Stallone to not risk his life when playing the role we’ve all grown to love.
Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his famous actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.
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