Michael B. Jordan says he's game to keep playing Adonis Creed after Creed II hit theaters this November - so long as the movies are actually good, that is.
The Rocky series roared back to life three years ago with Creed, a continuation of the franchise that shifted its focus to Adonis, son of the late boxing legend Apollo Creed. Sylvester Stallone reprised his iconic role as Rocky Balboa in the film, with future Black Panther director Ryan Coogler calling the shots. The movie was a hit with critics and grossed $173 million at the global box office against a $35 million budget. Thus, the decision to green-light a sequel was something of a no-brainer for distributor MGM.
Creed II will dive deeper into Rocky history and pit Adonis against his most dangerous boxing opponent yet - Viktor Drago (Florian Munteanu), son of Ivan Drago, aka. the man who killed Apollo in the ring in Rocky IV (Dolph Lundgren). However, when interviewed by the Toronto Sun on the Creed II set, Jordan was keen to emphasize that the sequel is about much more than just Adonis wanting payback for what happened over thirty years ago:
“Victor’s storyline is very layered. The two guys are similar in a lot of ways... Adonis feels, naturally, a certain animosity towards Viktor and Ivan, and then there are other themes in there: the maturity of growth, the importance of family, of legacy, is what makes Creed so special. It’s not just about revenge. It’s about a lot of things... If we get that lesson across, then I think we’ve made a pretty special movie.”
Jordan's comments here echo those made by Luke Cage creator Cheo Hodari Coker (who cowrote the film with Stallone) about Creed II being the story of "sons haunted by their fathers". Those concerns about legacy and the past will further impact Adonis' relationships with his loved ones in the film, including his girlfriend Blanca (Tessa Thompson, reprising her role from the first Creed). So long as the Creed franchise continues to do right by these themes, Jordan says he's interested in making even more sequels down the line:
“If I’m lucky. I want to keep making them as long as they’re good. I always want to keep my finger on the pulse. Forty two years [like the Rocky franchise], I mean, who knows?”
Since Coogler was unavailable to direct Creed II (due to Black Panther), he was replaced on the sequel by Steve Caple Jr. The latter is a young filmmaker who, like Coogler, was praised for his indie directorial debut (The Land, in Caple's case) and has continued to prove his mettle with his efforts working on TV series like Grown-ish. Creed II will be Caple's first big test as a director, but Jordan and Coogler alike seem confident that he will deliver the goods and prove himself to be another great addition to the Creed team.
If that happens then, indeed, who knows - we may yet wind up talking about the latest Creed movie, forty-odd years from now.
Source: Toronto Sun
- Creed 2 (2018) release date: Nov 21, 2018