Sylvester Stallone Opens Up About He Doesn’t Own the Rights to ‘Rocky’

Peace is not an option.

Sylvester Stallone explained he doesn’t own the rights to the iconic “Rocky” movie franchise during an interview on SiriusXM’s “Pop Culture Spotlight with Jessica Shaw.”

Stallone was promoting his upcoming ‘Tulsa King’ TV series, when Shaw asked the 76-year-old if there was a chance to ‘make peace’ with Irwin Winkler, who owns the film rights in ‘ Rocky” and “Creed” franchise.

“You can’t make peace with someone who has been so, so nefarious in my opinion,” Stallone said.

The ‘Rambo’ star went on to say “everyone did well,” but no one was supposed to do better than anyone.

Stallone opened up about the odd situation where Winkler owns the rights to the movie he created. He reminded listeners that even Stephen Spielberg doesn’t own the rights to “Jaws,” which belong to Universal Pictures.

Stallone made it clear that it wasn’t about the money for him, but rather that he wanted to leave something “Rocky” for his family once he was gone.

“I wrote it. I thought it would be nice to say, ‘Here’s the cherished gesture here. Beautiful children, beautiful wife. When I’m long gone, that’s you. That’s what I have done for you.

Stallone said he and his family would never own the rights to the “Rocky” franchise.

One of the most successful film series of all time, the ‘Rocky’ franchise has amassed $1.7 billion, including the twoThe Creed spinoffs.

Stallone makes it clear that he has no intention of making peace with Winkler.
Corbis via Getty Images

Calling the whole ordeal a “tough emotional race,” Stallone said he would never watch “Creed 3,” which is slated for release in March 2023.

Stallone has no beef with ‘Creed’ star Michael B. Jordan, saying he would sign on for a ‘Creed 4’ as long as Winkler and his son, David, weren’t involved.

David Winkler has served as the franchise’s producer since 2006’s “Rocky Balboa.”

Ownership of the “Rocky” franchise has long been a touchy subject for Stallone, who was paid $75,000 for his original screenplay and acting fees, plus 10 net points, earning him at least a 2.5 million on the first film, according to Variety.

Formation of Rocky and Mickey.
The franchise has grossed over $1 billion, but owning the rights to the franchise isn’t all about the money for Stallone.
Archive Bettmann

The original “Rocky” grossed $225 million worldwide.

“Our commitment to him was that he could play in it,” Winkler told The Hollywood Reporter in 1983.

“We convinced United Artists to give us the money to do it. They only gave us a limited amount of money and they said we had to pledge our houses. We really mortgaged ourselves to make sure we delivered it on time, and we did.


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