Sylvester Stallone is in the process of handing his Rocky franchise over to Michael B. Jordan – indirectly – by starring with the young actor in Creed. Essentially Rocky 7, the sequel/standalone film casts Jordan as Apollo Creed’s son, Adonis, and sets him up as a boxer in training who seeks out an older Rocky (Stallone) for training and mentorship. While promoting the film, Stallone was asked to recast some of his other iconic roles, and when he got to John Rambo, he had an offbeat pick: Ryan Gosling.
As luck would have it, days after this Sylvester Stallone reveal dropped, I was lucky enough to sit down with Ryan Gosling to talk about his role in Adam McKay’s upcoming comedy, The Big Short. I asked him if he’d heard about Stallone’s wish that Gosling would take over Rambo’s mantle for a Rambo reboot, and the actor was stunned. To the point that he actually didn’t believe me. A die-hard Stallone fan himself, Gosling said the following:
And here’s the crazy part. I wasn’t lying! Watch for yourself:
Now, the bad news for everyone involved is that there are no plans to reboot Rambo any time soon. In fact, Sylvester Stallone has been dropping hints that a fifth Rambo movie could eventually happen, with him back in the starring role. When last we saw our hero of the Vietnam era, he had returned home after a bloody battle in Burma, Thailand, and was looking forward to a little peace and quiet. But we know John Rambo, and those two things rarely find him.
That was back in 2008. Several news stories have suggested that Stallone wanted one more crack at playing John Rambo, but his Expendables movies have kept him pretty busy. That being said, as Creed will attest, Sylvester Stallone LOVES bringing his characters back time and time again… but he usually plays them, instead of letting someone else fill the role. (Judge Dredd being an exception that was out of hands, and also helps prove the rule.)
However, I do love the idea of Ryan Gosling possibly playing John Rambo in a remake of First Blood. That’s believable. Because after First Blood, John Rambo became an inflated superhero capable of taking down whole armies of enemies singlehandedly. And while I don’t doubt that Ryan Gosling COULD play that part, I see him actually fitting in as a former soldier who returns home and feels rejected by his country. That story is timely now. Maybe this is a good idea. Gosling has Stallone’s blessing. What do you guys think?
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Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. Sean created ReelBlend, which he proudly cohosts with Jake Hamilton and Kevin McCarthy. And he's the author of RELEASE THE SNYDER CUT, the Spider-Man history book WITH GREAT POWER, and an upcoming book about Bruce Willis.