Sylvester Stallone Retiring Rocky Balboa

Creed II hit theaters last week, and even though it came in #2 on the box office charts behind a record-breaking haul for Ralph Breaks the Internet, the movie carved its own legacy by landing the biggest Thanksgiving opening weekend ever for a live-action movie. Now, if a new Instagram video from Sylvester Stallone holds strong, it sounds like Adonis Creed will really be setting out on his own from here on out.

Sylvester Stallone took to Instagram today with a video recorded during production on Creed II where he announces that the Rocky spin-off sequel will likely be his “last rodeo” as Rocky Balboa. So what does that mean for the future of the Creed franchise?

Sylvester Stallone Retiring Rocky Balboa

If you’re unable to watch the video for some reason, here’s what Stallone says on what appears to be the final day of production with star Michael B. Jordan and director Steven Caple Jr.:

“This is probably my last rodeo because what I thought happened, it has happened, I never expected. I thought Rocky was over in 2006, and I was very happy with that. Then all of a sudden this young man presented himself, and the whole story changed. It went on to a new generation, new problems, new adventures. And I couldn’t be happier because as I step back, as my story has been told, there’s a whole new world that’s gonna be opening up for the audience, for this generation. Thank you very much, Stephen. And definitely you, Michael, for making that possible. Now you have to carry the mantle.”

While this might come as a surprise to fans when the Creed franchise is clearly doing so well with fans at the box office, Creed II does a fine job of setting the stage for Rocky Balboa to finally take a step back and let Adonis Creed set out on his own path. However, in order to touch on that, we must dive into some Creed II spoilers.

Creed II Trailer

Creed Needs to Move on from Rocky

During and after the final fight between Adonis Creed and Viktor Drago, on several occasions, Rocky Balboa tells his protege “This is your time.” While one could easily mistake that as simple words of encouragement as the fighter has defended his championship title, the final iteration of this line finds Rocky taking a seat next to the ring as Adonis and Bianca celebrate victory in front of all the cameras and fans. It’s a meaningful moment, and it’s one that clearly sets the stage for Rocky to finally let Creed set out on his own.

Considering the fact that much of the criticism of Creed II has come from the film tapping too much into the legacy of the Rocky franchise, having Creed finally move on from Rocky is the best move for the series. Plus, if Creed II really is the end for Sylvester Stallone as Rocky, then one would assume that Philadelphia’s favorite boxer may finally head to that boxing ring in the sky. That would be quite the hurdle for Creed to overcome if Creed III actually comes together. It’s not hard to imagine the sequel to start with Rocky’s funeral, setting the stage for Creed’s first real solo endeavor as a fighter.

Then again, let’s not forget that Sylvester Stallone has trouble letting go of the past. There were several instances when Stallone said he was finished with both the Rocky and Rambo franchises, but obviously he’s returned to both of them in recent years. In the case of Rocky, it would only make sense for him to return in Creed III if it was finally time to send him off for good. Only time will tell if Sylvester Stallone is really done with Rocky for good.

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