Considering that Creed was one of the biggest success stories of 2015, it’s no surprise that talk of a possible sequel immediately started circulating. But it seems that Creed 2 might be further along than we all thought. Star Sylvester Stallone recently revealed some of the ideas that he and director Ryan Coogler are currently considering for the follow-up flick.
In addition to earning high critical acclaim, Creed garnered an impressive $115.8 million box office gross against a middling $35 million budget. Given its overwhelmingly positive response both critically and commercially, distributor MGM has confirmed a sequel is all but a sure thing. “There’s no doubt that we’re making a Creed 2,” MGM’s CEO Gary Barber told Variety.
Stallone has even already begun developing ideas for the new Creed, as he revealed to Variety. According to the actor, one possibility that he and Coogler are contemplating involves the return of Carl Weathers’s Apollo Creed, the character that died in 1985’s Rocky IV. “Ryan has some ideas of going forward and backward and actually seeing Rocky and Apollo together,” Stallone revealed. “Think of The Godfather 2. That’s what he was thinking of, which was kind of ambitious.”
If that doesn’t pan out, Stallone says the duo are also considering a more traditional, linear story that would see Apollo’s son Adonis (Michael B. Jordan) taking on another challenger. “You’ll have him face a different opponent, which I would say is a more ferocious, big Russian,” he said. “You can start to meld my experiences and then you start to bring different cultures into it. And you can see what’s happening with the Russians today in America.”
While fans may be excited to see more of the Creed world in the future, these suggestions may have them a little worried, as neither sound particularly promising. To be fair, both ideas are only at the early stages — enough so, that Coogler was reportedly none too thrilled that Stallone spilled the beans. But based on these descriptions alone, it’s clear there’s still some work to do.
The first idea of bringing Apollo back seems to rely too much on nostalgia and not enough on Adonis — the character that audiences came to love in Creed. Plus, it would definitely require some digital trickery to make Stallone and Weathers look like their younger, fit selves. Even Jordan (who says he would like to reprise his role) expressed skepticism at how they’d make it work, asking Variety, “So it’s going to be a CGI-version of Sly?”
As for Stallone’s second proposal of having Adonis fight a Russian opponent, that might be a little too familiar. In fact, some have already pointed out that the idea basically sounds like a rehashing of Rocky IV, just with a new key player.
Again, it’s worth keeping in mind that the project is just barely entering the beginning stages of development. But there’s no question that those behind Creed 2 have their work cut out of for them. The reason for Creed‘s initial success is that it brought something new and fresh to a tired franchise. A sequel that regurgitates an old storyline (or focuses too heavily on the original characters) would only undo that — not to mention, take away from Jordan’s strong, emotional performance in Creed.
Making matters even more complicated? While he might be part of the brainstorming effort, it’s unclear whether Coogler will actually return to direct the sequel. The filmmaker is pretty busy, having recently signed on to helm Marvel’s Black Panther. We can only hope he’ll be able to work out any potential scheduling conflicts and help make Creed 2 as big of a success as the original.
Stay tuned for more details. In the meantime, Stallone is up for Best Supporting Actor at both the Critic’s Choice and Golden Globe awards this year.