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Stallone’s Explanation For Rocky Missing Creed 3 & How It Impacted The Movie

Warning: This post contains SPOILERS for Creed 3Even with the news that Sylvester Stallone is missing from Creed 3, it’s inevitable that the biggest pre-release question was still “is Rocky in Creed 3?”. After all, a secret cameo would have made sense and offered a chance to pay respect to the iconic character. Creed 3 is the ninth installment in the Rocky franchise, but is also the first to not star the beloved Sylvester Stallone as Rocky Balboa. Instead, the film focuses solely on Adonis, Apollo Creed’s son, and his past that has returned to haunt him.

The lack of Rocky’s presence will be a difficult change for some fans of the franchise particularly during Creed 3’s ending fight, but there is a lot of potential in the new direction the series is taking. There’s also still potential for Rocky to appear in a future movie, given his fate remains unresolved by Creed 3. That said, Rocky is a huge missing part of Creed 3, and it’s impossible not to miss him, even with Michael B Jordan’s masterful directing and a compelling story adding a freshness to the sequel that partly justifies a new direction. But why isn’t Rocky in Creed 3, and what impact does it have?

Related: Sylvester Stallone Explains Decision Not To Return As Rocky In Creed 3

Why Rocky Is Not In Creed 3

Sylvester Stallone in Rocky Balboa wearing a jacket and fedora in a chilly outdoor scene with industrial buildings and scraggly brush in the background

Creed 3 is about killing the past – a story that sees Michael B Jordan’s Adonis Creed confronting the ghosts of his past. Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky is the first casualty of that, but it was Stallone who is behind why Rocky is missing from Creed 3. Rocky doesn’t appear in Creed 3 because the story was too dark for Stallone:

“That’s a regretful situation because I know what it could have been. It was taken in a direction that is quite different than I would’ve taken it. It’s a different philosophy — Irwin Winkler’s and Michael B. Jordan’s. I wish them well, but I’m much more of a sentimentalist. I like my heroes getting beat up, but I just don’t want them going into that dark space. I just feel people have enough darkness.”
Despite how important Stallone’s Rocky is to Adonis Creed in the first two Creed movies, he is only mentioned once in Creed 3 as the inspiration for Creed giving childhood friend and amateur Damian Anderson a title shot. Even then, Adonis takes inspiration from his father, Apollo Creed giving Rocky the opportunity. Unfortunately, there are notable moments in Creed 3 where Rocky’s absence is not just felt, but feels nonsensical. Rocky would be at Creed’s final fight, he would be at his return fight, and he would absolutely be at the funeral of Creed’s adoptive mother, Mary Anne Creed. The final example feels like a particularly bad slight against Stallone’s character, who is defined by his heart.

How Rocky Balboa’s Presence Is Felt In Creed 3

Michael B. Jordan in Creed 3 and Sylvester Stallone in Creed 2

He may only be mentioned once, but Rocky’s spirit remains an important part of Creed 3’s events. It is his message of resilience that Adonis Creed uses to inspire himself to overcome the adversity facing him before and during his fight with Jonathan Majors’ Damian Anderson. Adonis even makes a loaded allusion to Rocky’s “it ain’t how hard you can hit…” mantra at one point.

Related: Jonathan Majors’ Workout & Training For Creed 3 Explained

Rocky’s origin story is also the inspiration for Adonis giving Anderson his first title fight against José Benavidez Jr.’s Felix Chavez. Anderson is actually painted as a dark mirror to Rocky: a dreamer who was simply never given a shot (in his case because he was in prison for 18 years), who overcomes the odds to win. But Anderson is no hero, ignoring Rocky’s code of honor to cheat and fight dirty, which is perhaps why it’s appropriate that Rocky sits Creed 3 out. To have a personification of heroic virtue so close to the action would have been too discomforting.

Ultimately, it feels like Rocky has almost been edited out of Creed’s own history. Their relationship feels like it’s been retconned into a sham, with no pictures of Rocky in Creed’s in-house museum even. Rocky failing to turn up for major life events is hard to take, but Creed being inspired to stand up, and never once hearing his mentor’s voice or thinking of his part in the development of that philosophy is a little insulting. Creed proved he needed Rocky, by following his lesson, but there was no allusion to its source at all.

Creed 3 Being Darker & Less Sentimental Is Actually A Good Thing


Despite Stallone’s complaints, changing the tone for Creed 3 and taking a darker path was certainly a big departure, but perhaps exactly what the series needed. Before its release, the previous eight Rocky movies followed the original formula and leaned heavily into sentimentality. While this formula and tone have proved to work, for the most part, there can be no progress without evolution.

With Michael B. Jordan’s Adonis now without Rocky in his corner, it makes sense that his story would swerve into a darker place. Adonis was first introduced into the franchise as a troubled kid and the darker storyline in Creed 3 brought Adonis’s arc full circle. Not only that, but it brought Rocky’s archetypcal underdog story full-circle with Diamond Dame offering the dark mirror to Balboa himself. The darkness allows Creed to still play with some of the best Rocky pillars – inspiring montages, uplifting triumph in the face of adversity – and actually fits Rocky’s whole philosophy of perseverance better.

More: Creed 3’s Most Heartbreaking Scene Makes Rocky’s Absence Even Worse

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‘I am officially off the market’: When Margot Robbie revealed she made the ‘conscious’ decision of not dating actors

Margot Robbie revealed her decision to not date actors because of the media scrutiny that came with a public relationship of two high-profile actors
Back in 2015, A-lister Margot Robbie made a declaration that she would not be dating any actors. The actress may have alluded to her fiance Tom Ackerley, who she married the following year in 2016. In an exclusive interview with Marie Claire, she revealed that being in a relationship as an actor herself came with its own set of challenges. She believed that dating someone who was popular would add on to the media scrutiny.

Margot Robbie opened up on why she made a conscious decision to not date actorsTalking to Marie Claire, she claimed, “I am officially off the market.” She then shared the reasoning behind her decision and added, “I made a conscious decision not to date actors.” She continued to explain, “But not because I hate actors. That’s a nasty generalization to make, and that’s not the case. People take such an interest in your love life when you have a profile, it puts a lot of stress on a relationship.”
The Barbie actress continued, “So two people with profiles, I figure it’s just double the amount of scrutiny, and I’d like to avoid that at all costs.” This came after reports of her locking lips with Tarzan co-star Alexander Skarsgard started making rounds. It was reported that she was caught kissing the actor during the Sundance Film Festival.

Margot Robbie revealed she opted for a minimal lifestyle even after becoming an actorIn the interview, Robbie also opened up about how she was adapting to fame. She shared, “I have a normal 24-year-old life. If I were a waitress, I’d probably have the exact same lifestyle. I’d go to the same clubs I go to already, live in the same house with the same housemates, hang out with the same people.”
However, Margot Robbie tied the knot with Tom Ackerley who is an English producer and actor. The duo met on the sets of 2013 movie Suite Francaise where Tom was working as an assistant director. Post marriage, both of them launched their production company LuckyChap Entertainment.

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Monica Bellucci and Tin Burton at lunch in the restaurant in Selci Lama

For All Saints’ Day, the Hollywood star from Tiferno returned to his native Umbria to enjoy a moment of relaxation and then visit his parentsOn the occasion of the All Saints’ Day celebrations, the Hollywood star of Tiferno origin, Monica Bellucci, returned to her native Umbria to enjoy a moment of relaxation and to visit her father Pasquale and her mother Brunella.Flanked by her current partner Tim Burton, she went to lunch, together with about twenty old friends, at the Osteria del Musicista, which has always been her favorite restaurant, in Selci Lama.Menu dedicated to typical dishes of the area, which includes an appetizer with breadsticks lined with coppa, duck in porchetta and grilled pork livers, polenta with wild boar sauce accompanied by the very typical cappelletti in broth.To conclude, a dessert based on fried “ciaccia” with Nutella and roasted chestnuts.
Having paid the bill and greeted the restaurant owner and lifelong friend, Roberto Polchi, Monica brought home cappelletti and broth for a family dinner.

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‘Rocky’ Was Quite Different In His Original Screenplay, Sylvester Stallone Claims

Sylvester Stallone took his friend’s advice on a rewrite of the original screenplay to Rocky. A few tweaks later, he was on his way to major success.
In the new Netflix documentary Sly, Stallone discussed how he initially conceived of the project, which had a much harder edge. In the early version, Rocky was depicted as a “thuggish” character, inspired by Martin Scorsese’s crime drama, Mean Streets.

But Stallone’s perspective changed when a friend read the script and thought the boxer was too cruel for audiences to actually care about him.
Stallone recalled her crying.

“She goes, ‘I hate Rocky. I hate him. He’s cruel. He hits people. He beats them up.’”
Stallone took it to heart, and asked what he could do to soften the character.

“I said, ‘what if you stop short of it?’ Like, maybe he almost did. He could have, that’s his job, but he doesn’t?’ ‘That’d be nice,’” he added. “I said, ‘What if he had a girlfriend or something?’ ‘Yeah, that’s nice.’ So I go back, start writing that: ‘Girlfriend. Nice.’”
$117 million in box office later, a franchise was born.

Stallone also revealed that actor Dolph Lundgren sent him to the hospital during one fight scene in Rocky IV.
“Dolph Lundgren… he pulverized me,” Stallone says in the documentary. “Later that night, my heart started to swell—which happens when the heart hits the chest—and then my blood pressure went up to 260, and they thought I was going to be talking to angels. Next thing I know, I’m in intensive care, where I’m surrounded by nuns, and I thought, ‘OK, that’s curtains.’”
Stallone was in the hospital for nine days following the incident, praying for “one more round.”
“For the first minute of the fight, it is going to be a free-for-all,” Stallone told Lundgren. The Swedish actor joked in a separate interview that all he did was “obey orders,” explaining, “[Stallone] was the boss. I did what he told me.”
Doctors allegedly told Stallone that he received a blow to the ribs that made his heart rattle around in his ribcage, a condition typically seen in head-on collisions. “I did hit a bus, of sorts,” Stallone joked.

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