A musical interpretation of the Oscar-nominated film from 1976 has been in the works for some time, and in just under a year it's set to premiere in New York City (it opened in Hamburg, Germany, last fall). And for those who've wondered just what it would be like to hear the Italian Stallion (alas, not played by Sylvester Stallone) emote alongside mousy Adrian, a first-look trailer offers a peep into the big pumping heart of the underdog boxer.
"The story of Rocky was very much like my life at the time -- starting out with nothing, having to fight for roles and recognition," says producer Stallone in the short preview. "So I put those feelings into the body of a boxer and I had no idea there were so many millions of people that felt the same way."
Hopefully, at least a fraction of those millions turn out for the show. "Rocky" opens in February, 2014. Check out the clip!
Robert De Niro as "Raging Bull" and Sylvester Stallone as "Rocky."
By Randee Dawn, NBC News contributor
He may be currently busy campaigning for a potential next Oscar nomination for "Silver Linings Playbook," but Robert De Niro is working hard on another upcoming project: The 2014-scheduled film "Grudge Match," in which he plays a retired boxer. So who will the former "Raging Bull" pugilist go up against in the film?
Sylvester Stallone. Naturally!
The pairing was announced back in October on Deadline, which noted that "Entourage" creator/writer Doug Ellin was crafting the storyline. But as Showbiz411 noted, the actors are now training together, which means "Raging Bull" is practicing battle scenes with "Rocky."
De Niro, 69, won his second Oscar for playing Jake LaMotta in 1980's "Raging Bull," while Stallone, 66, made a string of films as Rocky Balboa starting in 1976. (He earned two Oscar nominations for the original film.)
It's nearly as good as a "Star Wars"/"Star Trek" mashup.
Wednesday night, Showbiz411 reports, De Niro was toasted along with "Playbook" director David O. Russell at a dinner following a Screen Actors Guild screening of the film in New York. The actor told reporter Roger Friedman that he'd been working out with a trainer, and was excited to work with Stallone.
Not as excited as we'll be, once the film finally comes out.
Sage Stallone's final cause of death has been revealed, after he was found dead in his Los Angeles home July 13.
According to his autopsy report, Stallone died from atherosclerotic coronary artery disease -- a form of heart disease, according to Craig R. Harvey, Chief Coroner Investigator and Chief of Operations for the Los Angeles coroner's office.
It is unclear if Sage had been suffering from heart problems in the past, but this isn't the first time one of Sylvester Stallone's children has suffered from a heart condition. In 1996, one of Sylvester's daughter with wife Jennifer Flavin, Sophia, underwent successful surgery to repair a hole in her heart, just a few months after she was born.
Sage's private, family-only funeral was held July 21 at St. Martin of Tours Catholic Church in Los Angeles.
Sage Stallone starred with dad Sylvester in 1990's "Rocky V."
By Peter Gicas, E!Online
A devastated Sylvester Stallone is speaking out in the wake of his 36-year-old son Sage Stallone's passing.
"This is in reference to the speculation and questionable reporting surrounding the death of my son Sage. Because when a parent loses a child there is no greater pain," the actor said in a statement obtained by E! News.
"Therefore I am imploring people to respect my wonderfully talented son's memory and feel compassion for his loving mother Sasha, because this agonizing loss will be felt for the rest of our lives."
"Sage was our first child and the center of our universe and I am humbly begging for all to have my son's memory and soul left in peace," Stallone concluded.
Following Sage's passing, Ed Winter of the Los Angeles coroner's office said prescription bottles were recovered in the investigation, but did not say what the bottles contained, or whether they had a role in Sage's death.
"He was very creative, energetic and very full of life," Sage's attorney and longtime friend George Braunstein told E! News. "There was nothing dark or depressing, no problems, certainly no financial problems."
E! News has confirmed an autopsy was conducted on Sunday.
"The final cause of death has been deferred for additional testing," the coroner's office said in a statement. "No results will be released until testing is complete--six to eight weeks minimum. LAPD has requested a security hold on further details related to the death."
Sage Stallone at the premiere of "Rocky Balboa" on Dec. 13, 2006.
By TODAY.com news services
Updated at 6:31 p.m.: Aspiring actor and filmmaker Sage Stallone, the son of action movie star Sylvester Stallone, was found dead on Friday at his home in Hollywood, authorities and his attorney said.
"Sylvester Stallone is devastated and grief-stricken over the sudden loss of his son," the actor's publicist, Michelle Bega, said in a statement. "His compassion and thoughts are with Sage's mother, Sasha."
Police and a lawyer for Sage Stallone, 36, gave conflicting accounts of how he was found, but police said there was no sign of forced entry or foul play.
The case was turned over to the Los Angeles County Coroner's Office, Los Angeles police spokesman Lieutenant Andy Neiman said. Coroner's officials also said they were in the initial investigative stages.
Neiman said police found the younger Stallone in the home while responding to a "welfare check."
George Braunstein, an attorney who has represented Sage Stallone for 15 years, said a housekeeper found his body Friday afternoon. Friends and acquaintances had become concerned because they hadn't heard from Stallone in the past day, Braunstein said.
Sylvester Stallone may be the ultimate self-made star. Whether you think of him as Rambo, or Rocky or some other character from his dozens of movies since the 1970s, the man born Michael Sylvester Gardenzio Stallone has never been just another muscled-up Hollywood macho man. And today, as the Italian Stallion turns 66, it's worth looking at just why he's got a lot to celebrate.
Stallone didn't seem like big-screen material initially -- part of his face was paralyzed at birth. But he transformed that turned-up lip and unique way of speaking into a memorable characteristic and an asset. Not that he grew up with only hard knocks -- Dad was a hairdresser and Mom owned a women's gym in the 1950s -- helping Stallone maintain ripped muscles and rippling hair for his entire career.
But he struggled while trying to make it as an actor in New York City in the 1970s, doing an erotic film (1970's "The Party at Kitty and Stud's," later renamed "The Italian Stallion" to capitalize on his "Rocky" nickname) and erotic off-Broadway play (1971's "Score") while trying to break through. He had bit parts in better films like "Bananas" and "The Lords of Flatbush," but was still just scraping by, as he told Tony Robbins, having to sell the script of 1978's "Paradise Alley" for just $100.
Everything started to change after he saw Muhammad Ali fight Chuck Wepner in 1975. Inspired, Stallone ran home and three days later had a script for "Rocky." Determined, Stallone insisted that he star in the film, which made it harder to sell. But the film, which came out in 1976, was an enormous success, garnering 10 Academy Award nominations -- including Best Actor and Best Original Screenplay; it won Best Picture, plus two others.
Stallone hadn't just broken through. He'd broken the mold and re-cast it in his own image. He went on to make more "Rocky" films, along with tough-guy roles that naturally led to him kicking off another major franchise as misunderstood Vietnam vet John Rambo in 1982's "First Blood." Over the years, Stallone has gone back and forth between Rambo and Rocky in ten films.
Yet when he's tried other genres, the actor has had less success -- his aspiring country singer in 1987's "Rhinestone" flopped, as did the dark comedy "Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot" in 1992. Since then, he's stuck largely to the muscle-man role, even as he's aged, with films like "The Specialist," "Demolition Man" and, most recently, 2010's "The Expendables," which united him with peers like Arnold Schwarzenegger and Bruce Willis. ("The Expendables 2" is scheduled to come out Aug. 17.)
It's been a K.O. of a career for the actor, producer, director, musician, sometimes painter and Boxing Hall of Fame member. (He's also got three marriages under his belt, and five children.) But as a man who built not just himself but an award-winning career from the ground up, Stallone has never pulled his punches. Here's hoping he gets an extra-big birthday cake this year, something even John Rambo wouldn't want to shoot up.
And this is what happens when you do action movies in your 60s.
We gotta give it up to Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone for all the crazy adventures they've led us through on the big screen, but when we saw them hanging out side by side at the hospital earlier today, we got a little worried and hoped it was a scene from their upcoming flick "The Tomb." But nope.
This, our dear friends, is what we call "real life."
Schwarzenegger posted this photo via his WhoSay account and explained, "After all the action, stunts &physical abuse shooting The Expendables 2 and The Last Stand, it was time for a little tune up on my shoulder. Look who was coincidentally waiting in line behind me for his shoulder surgery. Now we're ready for another round of great times and action when we shoot The Tomb.#greattobeback"
It wasn't even planned! How funny.
Stallone and Schwarznegger will reunite in theaters for Mikael Hfstrm's film, which depicts Stallone playing an authority figure who must escape from a prison of his own design while Schwarzenegger will take on the role as one of the inmates.