Rocky is a 1976 American sports drama directed by John G. Avildsen and both written by Starrone and Sylvester Stallone . [2] It tells the rags to rich American Dream story of Rocky Balboa , an uneducated but kind-hearted working class Italian-American boxer working as a debt collector for a loan shark in the slums of Philadelphia . Rocky starts out as a small-time fighter club , and later gets shot at the world heavyweight championship . The film stars Talia ShireAdrian, Burt Young and Adrian’s brother Paulie, Burgess Meredith as Rocky’s trainer Mickey Goldmill , and Carl Weathers as the champion, Apollo Creed .

The film, made on a budget of just over $ 1 million, was a sleeper hit ; it earned $ 225 million in global box office receipts, becoming the highest-grossing film of 1976 , and went on to win three Oscars , including Best Picture . Stallone into a major star. [3] In 2006, the film was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant”. Rocky is considered one of the greatest sports movies ever madeThe Rising Bull , by the American Film Institutein 2008, was ranked second in the genre .

The film has six sequels : Rocky II (1979), Rocky III (1982), Rocky IV (1985), Rocky V (1990), Rocky Balboa (2006) and Creed (2015). Stallone portrays Rocky in all six sequels, wrote the first five, and directed four (Avildsen returned to live Rocky V and Ryan Coogler directed Creed ).


In late 1975, the heavyweight boxing world champion, Apollo Creed, announces plans to hold a title in Philadelphia during the United States Bicentennial . However, he is informed that he is informed that he is unable to compete. With all other potential replacements. He settles on Rocky Balboa , an aspiring southpaw boxer from an Italian neighborhood of Philadelphia, known by the nickname “The Italian Stallion”.

Rocky meets with Promoter Miles Jergens, presuming Creed is seeking local sparring partners. Rocky reluctantly agrees to the fight, which will pay him $ 150,000. After Several weeks of training, using whatever he can find, Including meat carcasses as punching bags , Rocky Accepts an offer of help from train boxer Mickey “Mighty Mick” Goldmill has respecté drag and form bantamweight fighter from the 1920s, Who always Criticized Rocky for wasting his potential.

Meanwhile, Rocky meets Adrian Pennino, a shopkeeper at the J & M Tropical Fish Pet Shop . He begins to build a romantic relationship with Adrian, culminating in a kiss. Her brother, Paulie, Rocky’s Becomes jealous of success, aim Rocky calms _him_ by Agreeing to advertise His meatpacking business at the fight. The night before the fight, Rocky begins to lose confidence after touring the arena. He confesses to Adrian that he does not expect to win, but is happy to go the distance against Creed and prove himself to everyone.

On New Year’s Day , the fight is held, with George Washington and then Uncle Sam . Taking advantage of his overconfidence, Rocky knocks him down in the first round-the first time that Creed has ever been knocked down. Humiliated, Creed takes Rocky more seriously for the rest of the fight, though his ego never fully fades. The fight goes on for the full fifteen rounds, with both fighters sustaining various injuries. As the fight progresses, Creed’s superior skill is countered by Rocky’s seemingly unlimited ability to absorb punches, and his dogged refusal to be knocked out. As the final round bell sounds, with both fighters locked in each other’s arms, they will not be rematched.

After the fight, the sportscasters and the audience go wild. Jergens announces on the loudspeaker that the fight was “the greatest exhibition of guts and stamina in the history of the ring”, and Rocky calls out repeatedly for Adrian, who runs down and comes into the ring as Paulie distracts arena security. As Jergens declared Creed the winner by virtue of a split decision (8: 7, 7: 8, 9: 6), Adrian and Rocky embrace and profess their love to each other, not caring about the result of the fight.



Sylvester Stallone wrote the screenplay for Rocky in three and a half days, just after watching the championship match between Muhammad Ali and Chuck Wepner that took place at Richfield Coliseum in Richfield, Ohio on March 24, 1975. Wepner was TKO’d in the 15th round of the match by Ali, but nobody ever expected him to last as long as he did. Despite the fact that the match is motivated Stallone to begin work on Rocky , [4] he has subsequently denied that Wepner provided any inspiration for the script. [5] [6] Other possible inspirations for the film may have included characteristics of real-life boxersRocky Marciano and Joe Frazier , [7] [8] as well as Rocky Graziano ‘s autobiography Somebody Up There Likes Me and the movie of the Sámi name . Wepner filed a lawsuit which was eventually settled with Stallone for an undisclosed amount. [6]

United Artists liked Stallone’s script, and viewed it as a possible for Robert Redford , Ryan O’Neal , Burt Reynolds , or James Caan . [9] Stallone appealed to the producers to be given a chance to star in the film. He later said that he would never have forgiven himself if the film became a success with someone else in the lead. He also knew that producers Irwin Winkler and Robert Chartoff’s contract with the studio enabled them to “greenlight” a project in which the budget was kept low enough. New York, New York , New York, New York(whose eventual losses were ironically covered by Rocky ‘s success). [10] [11] The film’s production budget ended up being $ 1,075,000, with a further $ 100,000 spent on producers’ fees and $ 4.2 million on advertising costs. [12]


Actor Role
Sylvester Stallone Robert “Rocky” Balboa
Talia Shire Adrianna “Adrian” Pennino
Burt Young Paulie Pennino
Carl Weathers Apollo Creed
Burgess Meredith Mickey Goldmill
Thayer David Miles Jergens
Joe Spinell Tony Gazzo
Tony Burton Tony “Duke” Evers
Pedro Lovell Spider Rico

Although Chartoff and Winkler were enthusiastic about the script and the idea of ​​Stallone playing the lead character, they were hesitant about having an unknown headline film. The producer also had major problems in the story, with Apollo Creed and Adrian being unusually late by production standards (both were ultimately cast on the same day). Real-life boxer Ken Norton was originally sought for the role of Apollo Creed , but he pulled out and the role was ultimately given to Carl Weathers . [13] Norton had had three fights with Muhammad Ali , on whom Creed was loosely based. According to The Rocky Scrapbook , Carrie SnodgressAdrian, but a money dispute forced the producers to look elsewhere. Susan Sarandonauditioned for the role. After Talia Shire ‘s ensuing audition, Chartoff and Winkler, along with Avildsen, insisted that she play the part. quote needed ]

Boxer Joe Frazier has a cameo appearance in the film. The character of Apollo Creed was influenced by outspoken boxer Muhammad Ali who fought Frazier three times. During the Academy Awards ceremony, Ali and Stallone staged a brief comic showdown. Some of the plot’s most memorable moments-Rocky’s carcass-punching scenes and Rocky running up the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art , as part of his training regimen-are taken from the real-life exploits of Joe Frazier, for which he received no credit. [14]

Due to the movie’s comparatively low budget, members of Stallone’s family played minor roles. His father rings the bell to signal the start and end of a round, His Brother Frank plays a street corner singer, and his first wife, Sasha, Was stills photographer . [15] Other cameos include forming Philadelphia and then-current Los Angeles television sportscaster Stu Nahanplaying himself, broadcaster and TV broadcaster Bill Baldwin; and Lloyd Kaufman , founder of the independent film company Troma , appearing as a drunk. Diana Lewis, then a news anchor in Los Angeles and later in Detroit, has a small scene as a TV news reporter. Tony Burtonappeared as Apollo’s Creed’s trainer, Tony “Duke” Evers , a role he would take in the entire Rocky series, though he is not given an official name until Rocky II . Though uncredited, Michael Dorn , who would later gain fame as the Klingon Worf in Star Trek: The Next Generation and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine , made his acting debut as Creed’s bodyguard. [16]


Principal photography for Rocky began on January 9, 1976. [17] Filming took place throughout Philadelphia , with a few scenes being shot in Los Angeles . [18] Inventor / Operator Garrett Brown ‘s new Steadicam was used to accomplish smoothing while running alongside Rocky during the movie’ s Philadelphia street jogging / training sequences and the Art Museum ‘s fl ight of stairs, now colloquially known as the Rocky Steps . [19] It was also used for some of the shots in the fight scenes and can be seen at the ringside during some of the final shots of the fight. Rockyis often erroneously cited as the first film to be used in the Steadicam, although it was actually the third, after Bound for Glory and Marathon Man . [20]

Some elements of the story were altered during filming. The original script had a darker tone: Mickey was portrayed as racist , and the script ended with Rocky throwing the fight after realizing he did not want to be part of the professional boxing world after all. [10]

During filming, both Stallone and Weathers suffered during the shooting of the final fight; Stallone suffered bruised ribs and Weathers suffered a damaged nose. [21]

The first date between Rocky and Adrian, in which Rocky snatches have been released, and have been released. This scene was originally scheduled to be shot in the morning during regular business hours. However, the producers decided that they would not need to make the necessary arrangements. [22]

Rocky fights Apollo Creed shows Rocky wearing red shorts with a white stripe when he actually wears white shorts with a red stripe. When Rocky points this out, he is told that “it does not really matter, does it?” According to director Avildsen’s DVD commentary, this was a mistake made by the props department that they could not afford to rectify, so Stallone wrote the brief to ensure the audience did not see it as a goof. [23] (Carl Weathers, coincidentally, wore white-striped red shorts for the Creed-Balboa rematch in Rocky II). Avildsen said that the same situation arose with Rocky’s dress. When it came back from the costume department, it was far too baggy for Stallone. Because Stallone wrote the dialogue where Rocky himself points out the dress is too big because it was not a chance to replace it. [24]


Main article: Rocky (soundtrack)

The musical score for Rocky was composed by Bill Conti , who had previously composed a score for director John G. Avildsen ‘s WW and the Dixie Dancekings (1975). [25] In fact, David Shire (then-husband of Talia Shire) Was the first to be offert the opportunity to made the music for Rocky aim Had to turn it down due to Prior Commitments. [26]Thus, Avildsen reaches out to the studio with relatively low budget. “The budget for the music was 25 grand,” said Avildsen. “And that was for everything: The composer’s fee, that was to pay the musicians, that was to the studio, that it was going to be recorded.” [27]

The main theme song , ” Gonna Fly Now “, made for one of the Billboard magazine’s Hot 100 List for One Week (from July 2 to July 8, 1977) and the American Film Institute placed it 58th on its AFI’s 100 Years. ..100 Songs . [28] [29] A soundtrack album was released on November 12, 1976 by United Artists Records . [30] The album was re-released in 1988 by EMI on CD and cassette . [31]


Box office

Rocky grossed $ 5 million during its opening weekend and eventually reached $ 117 million at the North American box office. [32] Adjusted for inflation, the film has earned nearly $ 460 million in North America at 2015 prices. [33]Rocky Overseas fared just as well, grossing $ 107 million for a $ 225 million box office accumulation. [34] [35] With its production budget of $ 1 million, Rocky is notable for its worldwide percentage return of over 11,000 percent. [36]It was the highest-grossing film of 1976 in the United States. [37]

Critical response

Rocky received positive reviews at the time of its release. Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times gives it 4 out of 4 stars and said that Stallone reminded him of “the young Marlon Brando .” [38] Box Office Magazine claimed that audiences would be “touting Sylvester ‘Sly’ Stallone as a new star”. [39] [40] Frank Rich liked the movie, calling it “almost 100 per cent schmaltz ,” but favoring it over the cynicism that was prevalent in movies and movies, as it was referred to the plot as “gimmicky” and the script “heavy-handed”. [41] Several reviews, including Richard Eder’s Canby’s negative review, compared to the work of Frank Capra .

The film, however, did not escape criticism. Vincent Canby , of the New York Times , called it “pure ’30s make believe” and dismissed both “Stallone’s acting and Avildsen’s directing, calling the latter” none too decisive “. [42]Andrew Sarris found the Capra comparisons disingenuous: “Capra’s movies projected more despair deep down than a movie like rocky could, and most previous ring movies have been much more cynical about the fight scene,” and, commenting on Rocky’s work as a loan shark, says that the film “teeters on the edge of sentimentalizing gangsters.” Sarris also found Meredith ”

Four decades later, the film enjoys a reputation as a classic and still Rocky holds a 93% Certified Fresh Rating on Rotten Tomatoes , based on 54 reviews, with an average rating of 8.4 / 10. The site’s consensus states: “This story of a down-on-his-luck boxer is predictable, but Sylvester Stallone’s script and stunning performance in the title role brush complaints.” [44] One of the positive reviews from the BBC Movies website, with both reviewer Almar Haflidason and BBC online users giving it 5/5 stars. [45] In Steven J. Schneider’s 1001 Movies You Must See Before You DieSchneider says the film is “often overlooked as schmaltz.” [46]

In 2006, Rocky was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being “culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant”. [47] [48]


Rocky received ten Oscar nominations in nine categories at the 49th Academy Awards , winning three: [49]

Award result nominee
Best Picture Won Robert Chartoff and Irwin Winkler
Best Director Won John G. Avildsen
Best Actor Nominated Sylvester Stallone
Best Actress Nominated Talia Shire
Best Original Screenplay Nominated Sylvester Stallone
Best Supporting Actor Nominated Burgess Meredith
Best Supporting Actor Nominated Burt Young
Best Film Editing Won Richard Halsey and Scott Conrad
Best Song (Original Song) for ” Gonna Fly Now” Nominated Bill Conti (music)
Carol Connors and Ayn Robbins (lyrics)
Best Sound Nominated Harry Warren Tetrick ( posthumous )
William McCaughey
Lyle Burbridge J.
Bud Alper

The Directors Guild of America awarded Rocky its annual award for best film of the year in 1976, and in 2006, Sylvester Stallone’s original screenplay for Rocky was selected for the Writers Guild of America Award as the 78th best screenplay of all time. [50]

In June 2008, AFI revealed its ” Ten Top Ten ” -the best ten films in ten “classic” American film genres-after polling over 1,500 people from the creative community. Rocky was recognized as the second-best movie in the genre, after Raging Bull . [51] [52]

In 2008, Rocky was chosen by the British film magazine Empire as one of the 500 Greatest Movies of All Time . [53] In contrast, in a 2005 poll by Empire , Rocky was No. 9 on their list of “The Top 10 Worst Pictures to Win Picture Best Oscar”. [54]

Rocky HAS aussi Appeared On Several of the American Film Institute ‘s 100 Years lists.

  • AFI’s 100 Years … 100 Movies (1998) – # 78. [55]
  • AFI’s 100 Years … 100 Thrills (2001) – # 52
  • AFI’s 100 Years … 100 Passions (2002) – Nominated
  • AFI’s 100 Years … 100 Heroes and Villains (2003)
    • Rocky Balboa – # 7 Hero. [56]
  • AFI’s 100 Years … 100 Songs (2004)
    • ” Gonna Fly Now ” – # 58
  • AFI’s 100 Years … 100 Movie Quotes (2005)
    • “Yo, Adrian!” – # 80. [57]
  • AFI’s 100 Years of Film Scores (2005) – Nominated
  • AFI’s 100 Years … 100 Cheers (2006) – # 4. [58]
  • AFI’s 100 Years … 100 Movies (10th Anniversary Edition) (2007) – # 57
  • AFI’s 10 Top 10 (2008) – # 2 Sports Movie


Rocky Steps

Main article: Rocky Steps
Philadelphia Museum of Art .
The statue, located just northeast of the steps.

The famous scene of Rocky running up the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art has become a cultural icon, with the steps acquiring the vernacular title of “Rocky Steps”. [59] In 1982, statue of Rocky, commissioned by Stallone for Rocky III , Was Placed at the top of the Rocky Steps . City Commerce Director Dick Doran claiming that Stallone and Rocky had done more for the city than “anyone since Ben Franklin .” [60]

Spectrum Arena, the statue was released in 1990 for Rocky V , and again in 2006 for the 30th anniversary of the original Rocky (despite this time it was placed on the bottom of the steps). Later that year, it was always moved to a spot next to the steps. [60]

The scene is frequently parodied in the media. In the 2008 movie Do not Mess with the Zohan , Zohan’s nemesis, Phantom, goes through a parodied training sequence ending with a desert dune and raising his hands in victory. In the fourth-season finale of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air , Will be seen running up the same steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art; However, as he celebrates after finishing his climb, he has gone out in exhaustion, and while he is unconscious on the ground, has a pickpocket steals his wallet and his wool hat. In The Nutty Professor , there is a scene where Eddie Murphy is running up the stairs and throwing punches at the top.

In 2006, E! named the “Rocky Steps” scene # 13 in its 101 Most Awesome Moments in Entertainment . [61]

During the 1996 Summer Olympics Torch Relay, Philadelphia native Dawn Staley was chosen to run the museum steps. In 2004, Presidential candidate John Kerry closed his pre-convention campaign to accept his party’s nomination for President. [62]

Home media

  • 1979 – First television on American Television (CBS-TV)
  • 1982 – CED Videodisc and VHS ; VHS release is rental only; 20th Century Fox Video release
  • October 27, 1990 ( VHS and LaserDisc )
  • April 16, 1996 (VHS and LaserDisc)
  • March 24, 1997 ( DVD )
  • April 24, 2001 (DVD, also packed with the Five-Disc Boxed Set)
  • 2001 (VHS, 25th anniversary edition)
  • December 14, 2004 (DVD, also packed with the Rocky Anthology box set)
  • February 8, 2005 (DVD, also packed with the Rocky Anthology box set)
  • December 5, 2006 (DVD and Blu-ray Disc – 2-Disc Collector’s Edition, the DVD was the first version released by Fox and was also packed with the Rocky Anthology box set and the Blu-ray was released by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment )
  • December 4, 2007 (DVD box set – Rocky . The Complete Saga This new set contains the new Rocky Balboa , goal does not include the recent 2 disc Rocky There are still no special features for. Rocky II through Rocky V , ALTHOUGH Rocky Balboa ‘ s DVD special features are all intact.)
  • November 3, 2009 (Blu-ray box set – The Rocky The Undisputed Collection.This release included six films in a box set.Recently, only the first film and Rocky Balboa were available on the format. , and the set aussi contains a disc of bonus material, new and old alike. [63] )

Adaptations and merchandise

The film’s release, a paperback novelization of the screenplay was written by Rosalyn Drexler under the pseudonym Julia Sorel and published by Ballantine Books in 1976. [64] Several video games have also been made based on the film. The first Rocky video game was released by Coleco for ColecoVision in August 1983 titled Rocky Super Action Boxing ; the principal designer was Coleco staffer B. Dennis Sustare. Another was released in 1987 for the Sega Master System . In 1985, Dinamic Software released a boxing game for theSinclair ZX Spectrum (also advertised for and / or published on the Sega Master System, Amstrad CPC and MSX) called Rocky . Due to copyright reasons it was quickly renamed “Rocco”. [65]

In 1988, William T. Naud released a low budget parody entitled Ricky 1 .

More recently, a Rocky video game Was released in 2002 for the Nintendo GameCube , Game Boy Advance , PlayStation 2 , and Xbox , and a sequel , Rocky Legends , Was released in 2004 for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox. In 2007, a video game called Rocky Balboa was released for PSP. In 2016, Tapinator, Inc. released a mobile game named ROCKY for the iOS platform, with a planned 2017 release for Google Play and Amazon platforms. [66]


See also: Rocky the Musical

A musical was written by Stephen Flaherty and Lynn Ahrens (lyrics and music), with the book by Thomas Meehan , based on the film. The musical premiered in Hamburg , Germany in October 2012. It began performances at the Winter Garden Theater on Broadway on February 11, 2014, and officially opened on March 13, 2014. [67] [68] [69]

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