Few movies have the kind of staying power that Rocky does, but more than 40 years later, the film is still a classic that is talked about to this day. Sylvester Stallone took to social media earlier today, to reveal a rare image from a deleted scene, although unfortunately that entire scene in question will never be seen intact. Here’s what the actor/writer had to say about this image on Instagram.
“Rare deleted scene from Rocky. Unfortunately the studio burned all THE OUT TAKES by accident and only a few pictures remain. This is the moment before ROCKY and knocks out DIPPER, (played by the excellent Stan Shaw) who threatens him and took his locker! KEEP PUNCHING MY FRIENDS.”
The Instagram post doesn’t elaborate on how the footage was lost, but it has been confirmed in the past that the footage was lost as part of a studio fire in the 1980s. Hopefully this post may inspire the actor/writer to post more deleted scenes/outtakes through social media. At this point in the film, Dipper was an up and coming talent that Mickey (Burgess Meredith) wanted to focus most of his energy on, since he was younger and considered to be a better boxing prospect than Rocky Balboa. In this scene that was cut, Dipper challenges Rocky to a fight when Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers) brings a film crew to Mickey’s gym for publicity, since Dipper is envious of the attention Rocky is getting. Rocky accepts the challenge, and ends up knocking Dipper out.
Indie film fans also got to see a different side of Rocky with the new film Chuck, based on the true story of Chuck Wepner, the boxer whose 1975 fight with Muhammad Ali inspired Sylvester Stallone to write the screenplay for Rocky, which he reportedly wrote in just three days. While Wepner was not expected to give Ali much of a fight, the New Jersey native went all 15 rounds with the world champion, even knocking him down in the 9th round, which Ali claimed only happened because Wepner was standing on his foot. In the film Chuck, Wepner is portrayed by Liev Schreiber, with his Ray Donovan co-star Pooch Hall playing Muhammad Ali and Morgan Spector playing a young Sylvester Stallone.
Rocky went on to become the highest-grossing movie of the year in 1976, earning $117.2 million, the only movie that year to earn more than $100 million. When adjusted for inflation, that box office total would equate to a $486.5 million movie today. Rocky would go on to spawn the successful sequels Rocky II, Rocky III, Rocky IV, Rocky V and Rocky Balboa, which many thought would be the final entry in the franchise, including Stallone himself. However, that was not the case, with up and coming filmmaker Ryan Coogler pitching a new idea for a spin-off entitled Creed, which brought back Sylvester Stallone as Rocky Balboa, who comes back to the boxing world to train Adonis Creed (Michael B. Jordan), the son of Apollo Creed.
Creed was a critical and commercial hit, taking in $173.5 million worldwide from a $35 million budget, with Sylvester Stallone earning an Oscar nomination for his portrayal of Rocky Balboa, although he lost the award to Bridge of Spies star Mark Rylance. There has been talk of Creed 2 for some time, with Sylvester Stallone even teasing earlier this month that Ivan Drago (Dolph Lundgren) from Rocky IV may come back to fight Adonis Creed. While we wait for updates on Creed 2, take a look at this deleted scene photo from the original Rocky.