Sylvester Stallone will not return for 'Creed III'

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Sylvester Stallone’s beloved character, Rocky Balboa from the “Rocky” movie franchise, won’t be in the latest “Creed” spinoff. 

The 74-year-old actor will not make an appearance in the upcoming installment “Creed III,” his rep confirmed to The Hollywood Reporter.

Stallone starred in six “Rocky” movies as the boxing champion and then again in the two “Creed” films as a mentor/trainer to Michael B. Jordan’s Adonis “Donnie” Johnson Creed — the son of Balboa’s former rival/friend Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers).

“Creed III” is slated to begin filming this year and has an anticipated release date of Nov. 23, 2022. Jordan, 34, will also make his directorial debut and serve as a producer. 

Jordan previously told THR, “Directing has always been an aspiration, but the timing had to be right… Creed III is that moment — a time in my life where I’ve grown more sure of who I am, holding agency in my own story, maturing personally, growing professionally, and learning from the greats like Ryan Coogler, most recently Denzel Washington, and other top tier directors I respect. All of which sets the table for this moment.”

Sylvester Stallone in ‘Rocky IV,’ released in 1985.
(Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc.)

“This franchise and in particular the themes of Creed III are deeply personal to me,” the “Black Panther” star added. “I look forward to sharing the next chapter of Adonis Creed’s story with the same responsibility of being its director and namesake.”

SYLVESTER STALLONE HAS ‘ZERO OWNERSHIP’ OF ‘ROCKY’ FRANCHISE

Besides Jordan, co-star Tessa Thompson and Phylicia Rashad will also be returning in their respective roles. 

“Rocky” premiered in 1976 and earned more than $225 million at the global box office, launching Stallone into fame.

Sylvester Stallone in a scene from ‘Creed II.’ Stallone has previously said he has ‘zero ownership’ of the ‘Rocky’ character and franchise. 
(Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures / Warner Bros. /AP, File)

He wrote the film and it went on to receive 10 Academy Award nominations, winning three Oscars, including the coveted Best Picture trophy.

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Stallone also received an Academy Award nomination for best supporting actor for 2019’s “Creed.” That year he also won the Critic’s Choice Award and Golden Globe award in the same category. 

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