One of this year’s biggest success stories was Creed, the Rocky spinoff that plenty of folks were wary about until that first trailer hit. Then when the movie opened in theaters, audiences found that Ryan Coogler had crafted a tremendous standalone film all its own that recognized what came before without hinging on nostalgia for it to work—it’s as much a sequel as it is a standalone film, and as much a reboot as it is a sequel. This is how you jump-start a franchise, with a refreshing focus on character above all else.
Critics took notice, and Warner Bros. was slightly caught off guard when the film started making Top 10 lists—one imagines the film could have been a bigger Oscar player had Warner Bros. prepared a proper awards campaign. Regardless, what really matters is that Coogler made a genuinely good film, and audiences are hungry for more. So the question becomes not will there be a Creed 2, but when?
Speaking with Variety, Sylvester Stallone—who just very well might nab a Best Supporting Actor Oscar nomination for his work in the film—let slip some potential story ideas for Creed 2, one of which should be of interest to fans of the Rocky franchise:
One version of the story would take place in the past, which would mean bringing back Carl Weathers to play Apollo Creed, who 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.” Stallone said he’d recently bumped into Weathers, who looked like he was still in good shape. “I can’t believe I got in the ring with him,” he says. “Even if it was play fighting.”