Sylvester Stallone accused of creating ‘toxic environment’ on set of Tulsa King series

The Paramount+ series’ casting director has reportedly left the project

Kevin E G Perry
Tuesday 09 April 2024 18:43 BST
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Sylvester Stallone has been accused of creating a “toxic environment” on the set of the Paramount+ series Tulsa King.

The Rocky star, 77, has been accused of making disparaging comments about background actors on the show, which films in Atlanta.

Tulsa King, which was created by Yellowstone showrunner Taylor Sheridan, stars Stallone as a New York mafia capo who is released from prison after 25 years and exiled by his boss to set up shop in Tulsa, Oklahoma. It is currently filming its second season after the first aired in 2022.

According to a report in Variety, the show’s casting director Rose Locke has recently quit the series.

On 8 April, television writer Julie Benson posted a message on X/Twitter saying: “Got this disturbing news from my Atlanta friend who’s background on Tulsa King this wk. Casting agent quit because she was so disgusted. My friend is feeling anxious about working now. [Sylvester Stallone] what do you have to say for yourself, sir? Beyond disappointed, I’m livid.”

Attached to the post was a screenshot of a Facebook message, claiming that Stallone had asked the show’s director on set: “What the F*** is happening with these F****** ugly background?” in reference to the extras in a scene with him.

Sylvester Stallone in Las Vegas in December 2023
Sylvester Stallone in Las Vegas in December 2023 (Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images for Fontainebleau Las Vegas)

The post continued: “He and the director proceeded to call certain people terrible names and laughed at them,” giving specifics and adding: “Sly said, ‘Bring in pretty young girls to be around me.’”

Also attached to the post was a screenshot of an email apparently sent by Locke, in which she wrote that she had paid a visit to the set after being “informed of certain things”.

She continued: “At the end of the day I resigned because it was a clear toxic environment that I was not comfortable putting myself or background artists in.”

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The Independent has approached Stallone for comment.

In 2022, Stallone’s brother Frank praised the actor for completing the first season of Tulsa King in the wake of his divorce from his wife of 25 years, Jennifer Flavin.

Sylvester Stallone had posted about wrapping the series: “This was a very long, difficult, exciting, mind blowing production [that] has just ended in Oklahoma. Though it was a long time to be away it was worth it and to work with fantastic talent in front and behind the camera.”

Commenting on the post, Frank wrote: “We are so proud of you, through tough obstacles the real pros show up and deliver.”

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