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Like professional wrestling before it, mixed martial arts is seeing an increasing number of athletes crossing over into the entertainment world. This doesn't always work out because not all fighters prove to be great, or even competent actors. However, when the role you are casting is that of a fighter, getting the real thing can lend a sense of credibility to the proceedings. With Creed 2 and the return of Rocky IV's Ivan Drago forthcoming, UFC fighter Sage Northcutt is throwing his gloves into the ring and hoping to play the son of the Siberian Express. Sage Northcutt spoke about the potential role and his proactive approach to getting the part saying:
You know what, actually, the new Creed 2 movie is coming out so I actually was going to audition for that. Got a little audition tape so hopefully that goes through. That would be pretty neat. Being Ivan Drago's son in the movie? That would be pretty fun. I had the hair a little bit different, yeah, for the audition... I think me and Mr Dolph Lundgren look kind-of alike.
Sage Northcutt certainly has the spiky blonde hairstyle down, although he is a much smaller guy than Dolph Lundgren. I would love to see the audition tape he sent in. It was doubtless something new for Creed 2's casting director. Sage Northcutt is known for his flashy style, post-fight celebration flips and a hyper positive and polite personality. He would have to tone down the positivity and constant smiling if he wants to be the son of the stoic, Ivan "I must break you" Drago. Sage Northcutt also spoke with Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour, in his normal aww shucks fashion, about how the idea came together, saying:
I had some friends of mine and they were talking about it with me and I just got linked up with it. A few people, Mr. [Urijah] Faber mentioned it too, so it was really cool how it's all coming together.
Knowing the right people generally helps. Urijah Faber is the owner of the Team Alpha Male gym where Northcutt trains. He's also a legend in the sport. Sage Northcutt comes from a karate background and while he is not a boxer, his style is striking-oriented, so his punches onscreen would certainly look legit if he does take on the role of the younger Drago. Creed 2 does not yet have a release date, but we do know that Sylvester Stallone, who received critical acclaim and awards consideration for his work in front of the camera in Creed, will be stepping behind it to direct the sequel. We also know that Dolph Lundgren's Ivan Drago will be returning and he is already in training.
For those who want to see Sage Northcutt in a real fight, you won't have to wait long. Sage Northcutt next fights this Saturday, November 11th at UFC Fight Night from Norfolk, Virginia on Fox Sports 1. He faces Michel Quinones in the lightweight (155lbs.) bout.