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The Creed movies may be a continuation of the Rocky franchise, but that doesn't mean that they simply repeat the same tired tropes over and over again. The Creed movies are their own movies as well, and one of the easiest ways to see that is the way that Creed treats its female characters. While Rocky's Adrian is an iconic character in her own right, the fact is that she didn't really do much in the Rocky films. This is why Creed II director Steven Caple Jr. prefers Creed's Bianca played by Tessa Thompson. He feels there's just more than she can do in the movie and more she'll be able to do in the future. According to Caple Jr...
You can take her character in Creed III and IV and go to places. You have this full-on arc for her, which I love. Adrian, you couldn't do that. Adrian didn't have much outside of Rocky's boxing. Tessa would joke around all the time. Every time she would get Mike mad or something like that she was like, 'Great, that means you guys are going to put me in a coma in Creed III?
Steven Caple Jr.'s reference, which Tessa Thompson apparently made on the set of Creed II, is a reference to Rocky II, a movie which apparently had so little for Talia Shire's Adrian to do that the plot just had her spend a large chunk of the film unconscious in the hospital to act as motivation for the hero.
Even when Adrian was awake, she didn't actually do that much in the franchise. She was much more focused on Rocky's career as a boxer and acting as his support structure rather than being much of a character of her own.
Tessa Thompson's character is a bit different in that regard. In the first Creed film, Bianca actually doesn't support Adonis' decision to be boxer, marking a stark contrast between her and Adrian. While Bianca will spend some portion of Creed II pregnant based on the trailers, Steven Caple Jr. tells Uproxx that he assured Tessa Thompson she wouldn't spend the movie as a simple background character due to the pregnancy.
Of course, the other thing this comment does is presuppose that there will be a Creed III and Creed IV down the road. Certainly, if Creed II is successful, then there's a pretty solid chance that was going to happen. Still, it seems that everybody from the director to the stars were talking about another film as if it's an expectation even while making the new one.
Tessa Thompson is becoming one of the biggest stars in Hollywood in recent years and it's great to know that if and when there are more Creed movies, the franchise will continue to use her talents appropriately, giving her stories that are worth telling.
Creed II is in theaters now.