Actor-director Sylvester Stallone has confirmed that The Expendables 4 is happening. Following his breakthrough with the Best Picture Oscar-winning boxing drama Rocky in 1976, Stallone quickly transitioned into becoming an action star, beginning with box office hit First Blood in 1982, where audiences were introduced to who would soon become an iconic character John Rambo. After two Rambo sequels in the 1980s, Stallone, found himself vying for the title of action movie king against former bodybuilder Arnold Schwarzenegger, who quickly rose to prominence thanks to his Conan movies, as well The TerminatorCommando, and Predator.

Related: Schwarzenegger Won’t Do Expendables 4 Without Stallone

As both Stallone and Schwarzenegger aged, both tried different film genres (including comedy) to varying degrees of success, while other actors like Bruce Willis, Jason Statham, Jet Li, Wesley Snipes, Jean-Claude Van Damme and Stallone’s Rocky IV nemesis Dolph Lundgren took up the action film mantle. In 2010, Stallone realized the potential of bringing a group of action stars together in one fell swoop, and the ingenious idea of The Expendables became a big screen reality.

Now, a week after Stallone teased the possible return of The Expendables in an Instagram post, he made everything official Friday on the social media account confirming The Expendables 4. He posted two announcements on Instragram, saying, in the first, “Somethings just can’t be stopped! Coming your way!” accompanied by a photo of Stallone (as Barney Ross) and Jason Statham (Lee Christmas) and the meme, “Bros for Life” (with The Expendables logo replacing the “o” in bros).  Leaving little doubt about what the project was, the title treatment for The Expendables appears in the lower right corner of the photo. See the post below:

Somethings just can’t be stopped! Coming your way!

A post shared by Sly Stallone (@officialslystallone) on

Stallone’s second post said, “Just when you thought it was safe to go outside…They’re coming back!” The post had a photo featuring Stallone, Statham, and Randy Couture (Toll Road), accompanied by the meme, “We are the shadows and the smoke. We rise. We are the ghosts that hide in the night.”

Just when you thought it was safe to go outside…They’re coming back!

A post shared by Sly Stallone (@officialslystallone) on

Even though no other production information or release date was revealed in Stallone’s post, fans of The Expendables will no doubt be thrilled with the announcement. And while the return of the franchise has been rumored for a couple years, The Expendables 4 comes as somewhat of a surprise considering how much the box office dropped from second to third Expendables film. Beginning with a global cume of $274.4 million for the first Expendables, The Expendables 2 made a franchise high of nearly $315 million globally in 2012, but plunged with The Expendables 3 in 2014 with a worldwide take of $214.6 million.

It’s hard to say at this point how The Expendables 4 got the greenlight. Perhaps it has a unique script, or maybe the studio backing the film is banking on Stallone’s resurgence thanks to his Oscar-nominated performance in Creed – a film that gave the Rocky franchise a whole new life and direction in 2015 (and led to Creed 2, set for release this year). Either way, The Expendables are back, and with any luck they’ll be bigger than ever.

NEXT: Stallone is Already Working on Escape Plan 3

Source: Sylvester Stallone

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