Sylvester Stallone Made a Major Change to Rocky Based on a Friend's Suggestion

Nov 21, 2023 789


Nearly 50 years ago, actor Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky Balboa was a down-on-his-luck club fighter who worked as a seedy collector on the docks. After six films and a Creed spin-off franchise, featuring three of its own installments, fans forget that the Italian Stallion originally served as a muscle-bound collector to the disreputable but likable Tony Gazzo (Joe Spinell) in Rocky.

And originally, Balboa was supposed to be an even darker character in director John G. Avildsen’s seminal film. In fact, Stallone revealed in the new Netflix documentary Sly that it was a friend of his who convinced him to soften Rocky up considerably. As a result, the character of Adrian was conceived. Stallone said (via Deadline):

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