Sylvester Stallone says brutal pec injury led to Rocky II plot twist

Sylvester Stallone thought his career was over after he tore his pec right off the bone, but he used the injury for a plot twist in Rocky II.

Last Updated on April 25, 2024

Rocky II, Sylvester Stallone, injury

In Rocky II, Sylvester Stallone’s character has to learn how to box right-handed due to the eyesight problems he developed following his first fight with Apollo Creed, but it was a real-life injury which prompted this twist.

During the TMZ special Arnold & Sly: Rivals, Friends, Icons, Stallone revealed that he tore his pec muscle right off the bone while training with Franco Columbu. This was just a month and a half before he was scheduled to start shooting Rocky II. “So, I go down, and it’s maybe only 200 [lbs]. I’m just warming up, and I hear a POW!” Stallone said. “I fall on the floor. And Franco goes, ‘Let me see.’ He jams his fingers — I’ve torn my pec off the bone. I mean, bad. I could hear it go rip, and he’s jamming his fingers. And I think I’m going to black out.” That… doesn’t sound pleasant.

Stallone continued: “I go home. I feel like my career is over. I’m supposed to start ‘Rocky II,’ direct it, everything in a month and a half,” Stallone continued. “Here’s the difference — and [Schwarzenegger] would have done the same thing… I can’t use this arm, so I’ll change it in Rocky. He’ll fight right-handed.” While the actor admits that the twist was “completely illogical,” he didn’t want to stop the movie for his injury. “That was one of the key things,” he said. “But it’s interesting the way these incredible journey’s happen. But we don’t stop, we don’t quit.

While I’m not certain I would be able to push past an injury like that, I think we can all be glad that Sylvester Stallone charged forward as Rocky II went on to become a box office sensation, grossing $200 million worldwide and proving that the first time wasn’t a fluke. Four more sequels followed, as well as the Creed spinoff franchise, which has a fourth installment in the works. Producer Irwin Winkler said, “We have a really good story [and] a really good plot. We got a little delayed because of the strikes, but about a year from now we’re going into pre-production.” He also confirmed that Michael B. Jordan would return to direct.

Source: TMZ

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Based in Canada, Kevin Fraser has been a news editor with JoBlo since 2015. When not writing for the site, you can find him indulging in his passion for baking and adding to his increasingly large collection of movies that he can never find the time to watch.