Sylvester Stallone‘s Rocky franchise is classic American cinema, no contest. The Oscar-nominated Creed is both a worthy continuation of the boxing icon’s story and a worthwhile original tale in its own right, thanks in part to Ryan Coogler‘s excellent writing and direction and Michael B. Jordan‘s fantastic, heartfelt performance. The 2015 sports drama that centered on Jordan’s Adonis Johnson anchored itself to the Rocky franchise by connecting to the storylines of both Rocky Balboa and his late friend and rival, Apollo Creed, Adonis’ father. Now, it looks like another franchise favorite may be returning for the Creed follow-up.
In a quick curbside chat with TMZ, Stallone half-joked, half-confirmed that Ivan Drago was in the mix for Creed II. Take his quotes with a heap of salt, but it’s fun to speculate on the idea regardless. Could Dolph Lundgren return as the Siberian Bull? And if so, in what capacity: as trainer, rival, or mentor? Sly’s not telling, not yet anyway.
Here’s what he had to say:
“It wouldn’t be a party without Drago would it? I’m gonna punch him. You know I gotta hit Drago once.”
Check out Stallone’s teasers for Creed II, along with a look at his early script work for Creed and vintage shots of him alongside Lundgren in Rocky IV: