The first trailer for “Creed,” the seventh Rocky Balboa film, has hit the Web, but this time, it’s Michael B. Jordan who dons the boxing gloves.
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This is two minutes and forty three seconds of just pure sublimity. It’s Ryan Coogler’s Creed, the MGM/New Line film that Warner Bros will release this fall. This isn’t just another installment of Rocky. After Coogler and Michael B Jordan teamed on the Sundance sensation Fruitvale Station, each of these young guys had their pick of projects. Coogler used his currency on his dream to make Creed. Turns out that while he was growing up, Coogler’s father showed him the Rocky movies to instill the notion of heroes and the idea that dreams can come true with hard work. As he became an accomplished wide receiver at Sacramento State and a budding filmmaker, Coogler’s father later came down with ALS.
All of the touchstones of his life are rolled into this movie and it required him to win the trust of Stallone, who was very protective over his first and most memorable character creation. When the movie became a reality, there was no one else he wanted to play the role of Apollo Creed’s son (it started out as grandson, but that evolved). It is becoming a right of passage for actors to play ring heroes, and, just like Jake Gyllenhaal in Southpaw, Miles Teller in Bleed for This and Edgar Ramirez in Hands Of Stone, Jordan accepted the challenge and got himself into rocking gym shape. The film follows the late Apollo Creed’s son Adonis Johnson stepping into the boxing ring, a profession which killed his father in Rocky IV when he battled Russian fighter Drago. “Your Daddy died in the ring,” a trainer reminds the young Creed who retorts, “That got nothin’ to do with me.” Adonis turns to Rocky Balboa to train him. At this point, The Italian Stallion has completely checked out of the boxing game.