Cameras have officially begun rolling on Creed II, the sequel to the 2015 boxing drama starring Michael B. Jordan, Sylvester Stallone and Tessa Thompson.
The Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures (MGM) and Warner Bros. Pictures sequel will find Creed director Ryan Coogler, who recently delivered massive Marvel hit Black Panther, taking on an executive producer role. Directing this time around is Steven Caple Jr., whose previous feature is the 2016 youth crime-drama The Land.
The film’s official synopsis has been released:
Life has become a balancing act for Adonis Creed. Between personal obligations and training for his next big fight, he is up against the challenge of his life. Facing an opponent with ties to his family’s past only intensifies his impending battle in the ring. Rocky Balboa is there by his side through it all and, together, Rocky and Adonis will confront their shared legacy, question what’s worth fighting for, and discover that nothing’s more important than family. Creed II is about going back to basics to rediscover what made you a champion in the first place, and remembering that, no matter where you go, you can’t escape your history.
Apart from Jordan, Stallone and Thompson reprising their roles, the film will also star Florian “The Big Nasty” Munteanu as Viktor Drago, son of Ivan Drago – Dolph Lundgren returning to the role he inhabited in 1985’s Rocky IV. Russell Hornsby is on board as Buddy Marcelle, Phylicia Rashad returns as Mary Anne, Wood Harris is back as Tony ‘Little Duke’ Burton, and Andre Ward reprises his role as Danny ‘Stuntman’ Wheeler.
Stallone has taken to Instagram with two on-set videos. “I want to tell you, this movie is taking off, exceeding my wildest dreams,” the actor says. Check this out:
You know the old cliché that it “seems like yesterday and “but it does and it’s a very exciting moment to be here getting ready to Watch Creed 2 to commence filming. A very exciting day !!! The actors and production team has been waiting a long Time for this film to start , so ladies and gentlemen get ready to watch the fists startFLYING! #MGM #rockybalboa #CREED2
Directors Caple Jr. and Coogler have an interesting connection: they went to film school together.
“When I wrote and directed Creed, I wanted to tell a human story about a family from a new perspective, while also paying homage to the Rocky characters we’ve all grown up knowing and loving,” Coogler said in a statement. “I’ve known Steven was an amazing filmmaker since our days at USC film school together, so I can’t wait to see what he, Sly, Mike and Tessa bring to this next chapter.”
Caple Jr. certainly has a lot to follow. Creed was released to strong reviews and earned over $US174 million worldwide from a budget of $US35 million. It also earned Stallone an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actor.
“It’s an honour to be a part of the franchise and work with such a thoughtful team,” Caple Jr. said in his statement. “I got involved because I’ve always been a Rocky fan and I enjoy stories with heart and substance. But when Ryan put his touch on Creed I felt another level of connection to the franchise. It started to feel personal for many different reasons. This next Creed is a tale beyond the boxing ring and dives deep into family, legacy, and fears. I’m excited to share my view and collaborate with the talented cast and crew.”
Creed II, which is currently filming in Philadelphia with additional locations set in New Mexico, is scheduled to open in the U.S. on November 21 and will arrive in Australia on November 22.