Stallone Promises Rocky Will Punch Ivan Drago in ‘Creed 2’
Though Michael B. Jordan was the breakout star of Creed as Apollo Creed’s rip-snorting fighter son Adonis, Sylvester Stallone got the best material (and the Oscar nomination). His arc saw aging boxer Rocky Balboa coping with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, mourning the loss of his friends and loved ones, and ultimately confronting his own mortality. It was meaty stuff, ending on a note of hope and rehabilitation as Rocky scaled the famed Philly steps once again, a bit worse for wear but still tough as nails. Stallone recently spoke out about his plans for the character in the impending Creed sequel, and with Rocky’s health back on the upswing, it looks like the Italian Stallion may have some fight left in him.
After having previously teased the possibility of getting back in the ring for Creed 2, Stallone went on the record for the camera-shovers at TMZ to confirm that he’d throw a punch — and at a familiar opponent no less. Murmurs have circulated that Russkie foe Ivan Drago (played memorably by a flat-topped Dolph Lundgren) would return for the sequel, and a brief tossed-off statement from Stallone has now confirmed it. To put it in the man’s words: “You know I gotta hit Drago once.”
Lundgren’s been on something of a roll as of late, parleying his status as an ’80s nostalgia object into key roles in Hail, Caesar!, the new and excellent Tour de Pharmacy, and the testosterone-charged action franchise of The Expendables. He’ll re-enter the Rocky franchise as a different (perhaps bigger?) sort of star, though the real question is whether he can take Stallone. Lundgren’ now 59 to Stallone’s 71 — hardly a fair fight, but when have the odds being stacked against him ever stopped Rocky Balboa?