Sylvester Stallone begs Rocky producer to cut him in after saying he has ‘zero ownership’ of the franchise

‘I really would like to have at least a little [of] WHAT’S LEFT of my rights back,’ Stallone wrote

Tom Murray
Monday 18 July 2022 10:24 BST
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Sylvester Stallone has written a lengthy post criticising Rocky producer Irwin Winkler over rights to the fighting franchise and its sequel series, Creed.

Stallone starred as Philadelphia boxer Rocky Balboa in all six original Rocky movies, which he also wrote and directed five of.

On Instagram Sunday (17 July), Stallone shared an image depicting Winkler as a snake with a knife as a tongue. In the caption, the 76-year-old argued that he should be given a financial stake in the franchise as a legacy to his children.

“A very flattering portrait of the great Rocky/Creed producer, Irwin Winkler, from one of the country’s greatest,” Stallone wrote, though, it was not clear who the artist was.

“After Irwin controlling [sic] Rocky for over 47 years, and now Creed, I really would like to have at least a little [of] WHAT’S LEFT of my rights back, before passing it on to ONLY YOUR CHILDREN – I believe that would be a fair gesture from this 93-year-old gentleman?”

Stallone continued: “This is a painful subject That eats at my soul, because I wanted to leave something of Rocky for my children, but it’s always great hearing from the loyal fans… Keep Punching.”

The Independent has contacted representatives for Winkler for comment.

In 2019, Variety reported that Winkler and his affiliates were surprised to learn that Stallone was upset about his position with the franchise, saying he’d earned tens of millions of dollars in profit participation in addition to his upfront fees.

A source told the trade that Stallone made more than $10m (£8.4m) on Creed and in the mid-teens on Creed II.

“I have zero ownership of Rocky,” Stallone told Variety. “It was shocking that it never came to be, but I was told, ‘Hey, you got paid, so what are you complaining about?’ I was furious.”

Creed III, the third instalment starring Michael B Jordan as Apollo Creed, is due to hit cinemas on 23 November, 2022.

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