As you probably know by now, the boxing drama “Creed” is a spin-off of the “Rocky” films, but centers on the son of Apollo Creed, Rocky’s rival and friend in the original films. But, “Creed” should make up its mind. The original trailers showed Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) trying to convince Adonis Johnson (Michael B. Jordan) to be a boxer, while the latest TV spots show Johnson seeking Rocky out with knowledge of a third fight between the pugilist and the long-deceased father he never knew (this is a reference to the end of “Rocky III”).
We’ll allow the confusion, if only because the idea of “Creed” is a bit risky and ballsy, plus its directed by Ryan Coogler of “Fruitvale Station.” If there’s a way to continue the “Rocky” franchise, what better way to pass on the torch then to have the aging Stallone adopt the trainer mantle and have a young, hungry newbie take over? Apart from Stallone and Jordan, “Creed” stars Tessa Thompson, Phylicia Rashad, and Anthony Bellew. Here’s the official synopsis:
Adonis Johnson (Michael B. Jordan) never knew his famous father, world heavyweight champion Apollo Creed, who died before he was born. Still, there’s no denying that boxing is in his blood, so Adonis heads to Philadelphia, the site of Apollo Creed’s legendary match with a tough upstart named Rocky Balboa. Once in the City of Brotherly Love, Adonis tracks Rocky (Sylvester Stallone) down and asks him to be his trainer. Despite his insistence that he is out of the fight game for good, Rocky sees in Adonis the strength and determination he had known in Apollo—the fierce rival who became his closest friend. Agreeing to take him on, Rocky trains the young fighter, even as the former champ is battling an opponent more deadly than any he faced in the ring. With Rocky in his corner, it isn’t long before Adonis gets his own shot at the title…but can he develop not only the drive but also the heart of a true fighter, in time to get into the ring?
Due in theaters on November 25th, Warner Bros. surely has high hopes for the picture’s box office success, giving it a prime Thanksgiving Day release. Does it have the distance to go the awards route as well? We’ll see soon enough. In the meantime, check out the new poster, pictures, and six clips (via Shadow & Act) below.