Sylvester Stallone reunites with the original turtles who play Rocky Balboa's pets Cuff and Link in the latest Creed 2 set photo. Longtime fans of the franchise know the animals as two of Rocky's oldest friends, purchased from Adrian at the pet shop decades ago. Their presence in the 1976 original led to a humorous line where Rocky wished Cuff and Link could sing and dance so he didn't have to box to earn money. The characters have made other appearances in 2006's Rocky Balboa and 2015's Creed.
While Ryan Coogler's film used a different pair of turtles, Balboa brought the "real" Cuff and Link back to the fold. Some may not know that compared to other animals, turtles have long lifespans (they can live to be 80), so Stallone's original co-stars are still in the primes of their respective lives. This means that they're more than capable of continuing their film careers, and they've returned for Creed 2.
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Stallone took to his official Instagram account to share a set photo of himself in front of the turtle tank, posing with Cuff and Link. Based on his caption (see his use of "original buddies"), it appears these are the turtles who were in the original Rocky all those years ago. According to Stallone, they're about 44 now. Check out his post in the space below:
An article on TV Overmind that detailed the history of the turtles mentioned Cuff and Link currently reside with John Stuart, who is the nephew of Joesph Marks, owner of the actual pet shop used for scenes in the original Rocky. The store has since been closed, but Stuart cares for the turtles. Seeing that he lives in Philadelphia (where Creed 2 is currently filming), it's easy for Cuff and Link to film their brief cameos. They've been a part of Rocky's story from the very beginning, so it's nice to see they'll be in Creed 2. Rocky has suffered a lot of heartbreak over the years (losing Adrian and Paulie), but his faithful companions remain by his side. As anyone who's owned a pet can attest, they frequently make great company.
It'll be interesting to see what other Rocky references/Easter eggs are in Creed 2. With the main plot focusing on Ivan Drago's son fighting Adonis Creed in the ring (making this a spiritual successor to Rocky IV), there's bound to be bits of nostalgia sprinkled throughout. The original Creed had some fun nods to the Rocky series with quotes printed on t-shirts and Adonis trying to catch a chicken while trailing, so odds are Stallone and company looked to blend the old with the new this time around.
- Creed 2 (2018) release date: Nov 21, 2018