Warning: SPOILERS For Creed 2 Ahead
Creed 2 star Dolph Lundgren has detailed an ‘emotional’ deleted scene that provided his character Ivan Drago with some redemption. Aside from a small, wordless appearance in the 1985 James Bond movie A View To A Kill, Rocky IV was Lundgren’s first real acting job. Stallone cast the actor for his hulking physique and towering height, and the character quickly became an iconic figure in the franchise.
Lundgren made a real impression in Rocky IV, but would soon find himself typecast as monosyllabic action heroes in the years that followed, including his title role in 1989’s The Punisher. After a long period spent making DTV movies the action star made a big-screen comeback with The Expendables movies, and now he’s reteaming with Stallone once again for Creed 2, where he reprises the Ivan Drago role for the first time since 1985.
Lundgren recently spoke about how he considered turning the movie down, though his doubts disappeared once he read Creed 2’s script. Now in a new interview with Slashfilm, he details a deleted scene that came at the end of the movie that provided redemption for the character.
At the end, after the fight, Adonis and Rocky are walking back and they see Ivan taking the wraps off his son’s hands and kind of comforting him. He’s feeling bad for losing. I leave the room and Adonis walks in and talks to my son. I come back in and we have a moment, me and Adonis, and then I have a moment with Rocky after that. That was taken off. Maybe it was too much or maybe it was too emotional or too soft. Maybe redemption comes next time around.
It’s a shame this scene didn’t make the final cut, but as Lundgren suggests, maybe Drago’s redemption is being saved for a future sequel. Rocky IV famously featured Ivan killing Apollo Creed during a fight, making the match between Adonis Creed and Ivan’s son Victor very personal. Creed 2 also reveals Ivan Drago essentially lost everything when Rocky beat him in the ring, and he's using his son as a way to make a comeback.
While Creed 2 isn’t receiving the same critical praise as the previous movie, early reactions state it's still a solid entry in the long-running series. It will also be interesting to see where the series goes moving forwards, and if Drago himself will play any kind of role. Rocky III featured the title character being trained by his former foe Apollo Creed, so maybe Ivan Drago could earn some redemption by coaching Adonis for his next bout.