Creed was a surprising and welcome addition to the Rocky franchise that was on par with the best of the series. Sequels to Rocky have been hit or miss over the years, but Creed is going to take that chance as the follow-up that continues the career of Apollo Creed's son Adonis is on its way later this year. And now, we have seen some of the first images of film that will put Adonis up against the son of the man who killed his father.
Two images have been released from Creed II. The first shows Adonis and Rocky together again. It's a fairly standard training shot, where Adonis is taking shots on a heavy bag while Rocky stands behind it to keep it in place so Creed can continue to throw punches. Rocky has a bit of a smile on his face which would seem to indicate the pair are getting along and working well together. The first trailer for the sequel shows the pair somewhat at odds with each other over Creed's decision to fight Ivan Drago's son, which will be the major conflict of the film.
The second image simply shows Adonis Creed, ready for a fight. He's dressed in his trunks and gloves and wearing a robe that implies he's about to enter an arena for a fight. He also has a large entourage behind him. There are two interesting things about this second photo. The first is that Rocky isn't in it, meaning that Adonis' mentor/trainer may indeed separate from his fighter at some point in the film. The second interesting thing is that a member of Adonis entourage is clearly holding the WBC Championship belt, so at some point, either before the movie begins or during the film itself, Creed becomes a champion. The first trailer for Creed II said there was "more to lose than a title," but it appears a title is in fact also on the line, and now we know which one.
While Creed II brings back all of our favorite characters from the last film, the makeup behind the camera is very different. Ryan Coogler wrote and directed the previous film, but the sequel is directed by Steven Caple Jr. and sees a script co-written by Sylvester Stallone himself along with Cheo Hodari Coker the showrunner of Netflix's Luke Cage.
While it's impossible to judge quality from a couple of still images, it's clear that Creed II certainly looks great, and that's a start. If the sequel is to put together a story as good the first Creed while simultaneously connecting back to fan-favorite Rocky IV, this could end up being one of the biggest films in the franchise's history.