Sylvester Stallone will return to the screen as Rocky Balboa in Creed 2 but will no longer be in the director’s chair.
The announcement comes after the actor (who won a Golden Globe and received an Oscar nomination for his reprisal of the Italian Stallion in Creed), had previously announced via his social media accounts that he would be helming the sequel to Ryan Coogler’s 2015 Rocky spin-off.
Variety reports that the sequel will now be directed by Steven Caple Jr., who made the 2016 Sundance hit The Land. The decision is said to have been heavily influenced by Stallone himself and his co-star Michael B Jordan. Stallone had this to say;
“The character of [Michael B. Jordan’s] Adonis Creed reflects this generation and its challenges, I believe it’s important for the director to also be a part of this generation like I was in mine, to make the story as relatable as possible. We are extremely lucky to have the talented young filmmaker Steven Caple Jr. step up and accept the role of director. I am confident that he and Michael B. Jordan will hit it out of the park!”
Jordan took to Twitter following the announcement;
“Excited for Coogler to hand over the reins to Steven Caple, Jr. – our director for Creed 2! Can’t wait to bring you guys the next chapter of our story … coming at you November 2018.”
Caple Jnr. was clearly thrilled to be taking on the new project;
“It’s an honour to be a part of such an iconic franchise and to work with such great collaborators, Mike, Sly, and Tessa (Thompson) are extraordinarily talented and bring something special to today’s culture. I look forward to joining the family and continuing the precedent set by this franchise’s alumni of incredible Filmmakers”
The sequel which is heavily rumoured to feature the return of Dolph Lundgren as the villainous Ivan Drago and is based on a script by Stallone, is expected to hit US cinemas November 21st 2018 and will also see the return of actress Tessa Thompson.