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Rocky (United Artists 1976, Sylvester Stallone, Burgess Meridith)

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Rocky is the plucky crowd-pleaser that took courage and determination on Stallone’s part to produce. While trying to make it as a screenwriter, the unknown Stallone created his famous character after watching the Ali-Wepner bout, and clearly drawing parallels with his own underdog status.

He insisted on playing the lead, though offered much-needed cash to sell the script; he made the right choice, as Stallone’s character and the movie became international sensations, touching the plucky underdog in every audience. Washed-up canvas-back Stallone gets the chance of a lifetime when cocky champion Weathers lets an unknown take a shot at his title.

With his trainer Meredith and shy girlfriend Shire supporting him, Stallone hits the pavement to train for his moment of glory. As well as setting up a chain of sequels (still resonating today with reboot Creed) Rocky also won a Golden Globe for Best Motion Picture, Drama and notched up 10 Academy Award Nominations including Best Actor: Sylvester Stallone; Best Actress: Talia Shire; Best Supporting Actor: Burgess Meredith; Best Supporting Actor: Burt Young; Best (Original) Screenplay.

production details
USA | United Artists | 119 minutes | 1976

Screenwriter: Sylvester Stallone
Director of Photography: James Crabe
Composer: Bill Conti
Production Designer: William Cassidy
Costume Designer: Robert Cambel, Joanne Hutchinson
Producers: Robert Chartoff, Irwin Winkler
Director: John G. Avildsen

cast
Arthur Tovey as Reporter (uncredited)
Stan Shaw as Dipper
Joe Spinell as Gazzo
Billy Sands as Club Fight Announcer
George O’Hanlon as TV Commentator 2
Carl Weathers as Apollo Creed
Simmy Bow as Club Corner Man
Sylvester Stallone as Rocky Balboa
Talia Shire as Adrianna “Adrian” Pennino
Burt Young as Paulie
Burgess Meredith as Mickey Goldmill
Thayer David as Jergens
Tony Burton as Duke
Joe Frazier as Himself
Jimmy Gambina as Mike
Jodi Letizia as Marie
Michael Dorn as Apollo Creed’s Bodyguard (uncredited)
DeForest Covan as Apollo’s Corner
Bill Baldwin as Fight Announcer
Lloyd Kaufman as Drunk
Al Silvani as Cut Man
George Memmoli as Ice Rink Attendant
Diana Lewis as TV Commentator 1
Larry Carroll as TV Interviewer
Frank Stallone as Streetcorner Singer
Don Sherman as Bartender
Jane Marla Robbins as Owner of Pet Shop
Frank Pesce as Spectator (uncredited)
John Pleshette as Aftershave Commercial Director (uncredited)
Lavelle Roby as Mary Anne Creed (uncredited)
Pedro Lovell as Club Fighter
Stu Nahan as Fight Commentator (uncredited)
Hank Rolike as Apollo Corner Man
Shirley O’Hara as Secretary
Kathleen Parker as Paulie’s Date
Frankie Van as Club Fight Referee
Arnold Johnson as Spectator (uncredited)