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Chuck Wepner tried to do a lot with his fifteen minutes of fame.
The journeyman boxer stunned everyone by going fifteen rounds in a 1975 title fight against Muhammad Ali, even knocking him down at one point. His million-to-one shot helped inspire “Rocky,” which sanded off some of Wepner’s rougher edges as it punched its way to the top. Wepner struggled with his fictionalized alter-ego, embracing its Oscar success and befriending Sylvester Stallone before engaging in long-running litigation against the actor and writer.
In “Chuck,” an upcoming indie biopic, Wepner is casting off his Rocky Balboa alter-ego. The boxer is brought vividly to life by Liev Schreiber, who capturers the Jersey bruiser’s tender side and his dangerous attraction to the limelight. Schreiber got involved in the project because he felt that Wepner represented an important cautionary tale about celebrity, and that his life story was a way for him »
- Brent Lang
Here is an exclusive clip before tonight’s premiere of the finished feature biopic of boxer Chuck Wepner gets a splashy Tribeca Film Festival premiere, the film showing for the first time under its new title Chuck. Producer Mike Tollin, who has been promising Wepner his life story would make the screen for real since he optioned his rights in 2003 — you can’t count Best Picture winner Rocky even though many, Wepner included, felt Sylvester Stallone channeled Wepner’s… »
Of the thousands of people who will flock to see Guardians of the Galaxy 2 when it hits theaters on May 5, there's a good chance many of them will watch it start to finish without ever realizing Chris Sullivan has been on screen. The This Is Us actor, who plays Toby on the beloved drama, is hidden under layers and layers of thick facial prosthetics to help him embody one of Marvel's more obscure villains, Taserface (yes, Taserface). Because the character has never been on screen before and isn't necessarily a fan favorite, it gave Sullivan the rare opportunity to truly make it his own. "Before this project, I'd never even asked myself what an intergalactic space pirate would be like," he joked with Popsugar during a recent interview. "There are no rules. It certainly took a little bit of the pressure off of meeting expectations, as far as what he's supposed to be, »
- Quinn Keaney
Most people know Sylvester Stallone from his legendary Rambo and Rocky roles, but it's easy to forget that between 1980 and 1995 he starred in some of the most beloved (and completely bananas) action and sci-fi movies of that era. Nighthawks, Cobra, Lock Up, Cliffhanger, Demolition Man, Judge Dredd, Assassins, and Daylight -- sure, nobody's saying these films belong anywhere near the AFI's top 100, but this stretch of work was Stallone at the top of his game. I strongly recommend Nighthawks (co-starring Billy Dee Williams), it's seriously one of the great unsung action films of the early 80s.
Of course, we all know about Kurt Russell's epic run of action and sci-fi during this same period (starting with Escape from New York and ending with Stargate). It's arguable who's the better actor, but you have to give Stallone the edge for cultural impact during the 80s and early 90s.
Related: Stallone »
- David Kozlowski
What is it about this big, dumb movie that gets me every time?
You can go ahead and sheathe your Tweets, we are well aware that 1987’s Over the Top is a flawed piece of cinema. It’s called Over the Top for crying out loud; if ever the writing was on the wall. However, there is something about this spectacular failed attempt to take the sport of armwrestling mainstream that continues to delight and inspire this writer and the other hosts of the Junkfood Cinema podcast. If you currently sneer at “that movie where Sylvester Stallone armwrestles for custody of his son,” allow me to offer an argument in favor of Over the Top. Look, just read it, ok? Meet me halfway.
While the popular logline for Over the Top is not entirely accurate, it’s unquestionable that it is a silly movie. Truckers getting their faces smacked before armwrestling each other in sweaty diner back »
- Brian Salisbury
Sneak Peek more new footage, plus images from director James Gunn's "Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 2", on the news that "Rocky" actor Sylvester Stallone portrays Marvel Comics character 'Starhawk' aka 'Stakar of the House of Ogord', a high-ranking member of the 'Ravagers', in the new Marvel Studios feature:
"...'Stakar' was fated to eventually re-inhabit his infant body, reliving his life over countless times. Because of the knowledge of things to come, he manipulated events to affect what he felt would be the best outcome, referring to himself as 'One Who Knows'.
"He made many enemies in doing so, but his tampering and guidance also led to the formation of the 'Guardians of the Galaxy' in the 31st Century. »
- Michael Stevens
No, Sylvester Stallone won’t be playing Rocky but come on. Rocky III is a classic and I had to put up a picture of him raising his fists in a victorious manner. Anyway, after weeks of speculating as to what role Sylvester Stallone would be playing in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, it’s now officially been confirmed that he is indeed playing Stakar, also known as Starhawk This is the role he was rumored to play but today it’s been officially announced via Cbm. Here’s the info that was revealed in the press notes regarding the role: “A lifelong
- Nat Berman
One of the best casting additions made to Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 has to be Sylvester Stallone, but ever since the Rocky actor was spotted on the Atlanta set of the sequel, we’ve had no idea who he’ll be playing. Well, that’s finally changed today thanks to some official production notes for the movie.
Before we get to that, though, it’s also been revealed that Laura Haddock will be reprising the role of Meredith Quill in the upcoming blockbuster. She’ll more than likely be appearing in flashbacks revealing how Star-Lord (Chris Pratt) was conceived, as that’s something the first movie only teased us with in the opening.
Going back to Stallone though, and it’s indeed been confirmed that he’ll be suiting up as Stakar, a character that fans of the comic books will probably best know as Starhawk. He has »
- Josh Wilding
Every year, celebrities, filmmakers, journalists and movie fans flock to the Tribeca neighborhood in lower Manhattan for the Tribeca Film Festival, an illustrious celebration of film and television that features some of the most exciting projects and panel discussions of any media festival in the country.
Founded by Jane Rosenthal, Robert De Niro and Craig Hatkoff in 2001, shortly after the attacks of 9/11, the festival has helped revitalize the city and remind both filmmakers and fans alike of New York City’s valued place in film and TV while becoming a welcoming community for voices and perspectives from all over the world. “It’s also a fabric of our city. So whether or not it’s a film from Israel or Palestine or something for kids, our festival was about community and it still is,” Rosenthal tells Et. “It’s about bringing community together.”
The 2017 festival, which runs April 19-30, continues to expand beyond film and TV with »
Disney has released two international posters for Cars 3, which show Lightning McQueen squaring off against two young racers Cruz Ramirez (Cristela Alonzo) and Jackson Storm (Armie Hammer). While Jackson Storm becomes his most contested rival on the Piston Cup circuit, Cruz Ramirez is actually on Lightning's side, serving as his new trainer to help him beat the young upstart. The first poster teases a scene we've previously seen in early concept art, which may be an homage to an iconic movie.
BadTaste.it debuted these posters, the first of which shows Lightning McQueen on the beach. You may recall that, back in May, Disney revealed concept art that showed Lightning McQueen and Cruz Ramirez racing on the sand, which may or may not be an homage to the iconic oceanside race between Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) and Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers) in Rocky 3. The second poster, however, is set at a packed racing arena, »
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This week sees the 40th anniversary of Woody Allen’s Annie Hall so a career overview for the brilliant humorist/director seems in order.
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Woody is killed in a bloody gun ambush. Woody becomes president. Woody appears to tear a hole in the movie screen and “escapes” into the theater. »
- TFH Team
Generally, movies that tell the “real version” of some other story are cheap and desperate attempts to remake or cash in on a popular thing. But those “real versions” are also rarely lucky enough to be able to include Sylvester Stallone as a character in their narrative. Director Philippe Falardeau’s Chuck gets to do that, though, and the moment Stallone shows up it’s clear that this isn’t a movie about just any blue-collar boxer trying to make his way in the world, it’s about the blue-collar boxer trying to make his way in the world who let Sylvester Stallone turn his life story into Rocky. This trailer makes it look like Chuck will be more comedic than Rocky—at least based on the shot where Liev Schreiber’s Chuck has to fight a bear and the part where he very half-heartedly punches a mirror—but that »
- Sam Barsanti
Some people’s lives are best told truthfully, others more loosely.
In one corner, we have Rocky, the iconic Best Picture-winning boxing movie starring Sylvester Stallone as the made-up Rocky Balboa. In the other corner, we have Chuck, an upcoming biopic starring Liev Schreiber as real-life boxer Chuck Wepner. The latter primarily depicts the 1975 bout between Wepner and Muhammad Ali, which inspired Stallone to write the script for Rocky. He’s since tried to downplay the connection, especially after being sued by Wepner, but it’s close enough to being a film a clef as any.
Chuck received mostly positive reviews when it played the big film festivals last fall, but it’s unlikely to become the phenomenon, let alone Oscar darling, that Rocky was. Its legacy surely won’t be as lasting, in part because true biopics don’t tend to get sequels. There are a lot of benefits to fictionalized accounts of real events and »
- Christopher Campbell
I’ve seen all of the Rocky movies a handful of times, but I’ve somehow never thought to do any research into writer/star Sylvester Stallone’s inspiration for his underdog boxing story. Sly apparently wrote the script in three and a half days after watching an unknown fighter named Chuck Wepner beat the odds and miraculously go 15 rounds against one […]
The post ‘Chuck’ Trailer: The Inspiration for ‘Rocky’ Gets His Own Biopic appeared first on /Film. »
- Ben Pearson
Tony Sokol Apr 10, 2017
If you're a fan of Sylvester Stallone's Rocky, you may want to keep an eye on Chuck. Directed by Philippe Falardeau, the biopic tells the story of former New Jersey boxer and booze peddler Chuck Wepner, who went 15 rounds with Muhammad Ali, and inspired the character Rocky Balboa.
Chuck received good reviews when it screened at the 2016 Venice Film Festival, so we're rather looking forward to this one. Like Balboa »
The real Rocky Balboa takes center stage in the first trailer for Philippe Falardeau’s Chuck. Liev Schreiber (Ray Donovan) steps into the ring to portray Chuck Wepner, the once “heavyweight champ in New Jersey,” who Sylvester Stallone used for inspiration when writing Rocky, the quintessential boxing movie. Wepner earned notoriety and attention in 1975 after almost going 15 rounds with “The Greatest” himself, Muhammad Ali. Check out the trailer here…
A Wepner movie has been long in the works, with Schreiber and his co-star (and wife) Naomi Watts (Demolition) being attached since 2011 when the movie was titled The Bleeder. The film wrapped principal photography in December 2015 and was screened at the 2016 Venice Film Festival in September, so its theatrical release is a long time coming.
The few critics who were able to catch the film at Venice welcomed it with mostly positive reception, calling it familiar yet enjoyable and commending a no-punches-pulled performance from Schreiber. »
- Justin Cook
Anything combing the phrase “real life Rocky Balboa” and the name “Liev Schreiber” has got my attention. If you know your Rocky trivia you’ll know that a fighter by the name of Chuck Wepner went 15 rounds with Muhammad Ali which inspired Sylvester Stallone to write the movie Rocky. Even though Stallone would later go on to deny it, come on. Look at the character Apollo Creed and look at Muhammad Ali. The entire premise of Rocky is him wanting to go the distance with the champ which was coincidentally 15 rounds. Liev Schreiber takes on the lead role in
- Nat Berman
If you know your Rocky Balboa lore, you'll likely know the name of Chuck Wepner, a professional boxer whose fifteen round fight with world heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali in 1975 inspired Sylvester Stallone to pen the script for what would become Rocky, although Stallone would deny it. Liev Schreiber takes on the lead role in Chuck which follows Wepner through his epic life of drugs, booze, wild women,... Read More »
- Kevin Fraser
IFC has released the first trailer for its upcoming biopic Chuck, which is set to hit theaters on May 5. While many fans may not know Chuck Wepner by name, the New Jersey boxer served as the inspiration for Sylvester Stallone's iconic character Rocky Balboa. Liev Schreiber stars as Wepner, whose extraordinary true story is told for the first time on the big screen.
Chuck Wepner was a liquor salesman from New Jersey who went 15 rounds with the greatest boxer of all time, Muhammad Ali. In his ten years in the ring, Wepner endured two knockouts, eight broken noses, and 313 stitches. But his toughest fights were outside the ring: an epic life of drugs, booze, wild women, incredible highs and extraordinary lows in IFC's biopic.
Sylvester Stallone started his rise to fame Hollywood with the Oscar-winning sports drama Rocky. However, in the 80s he established himself as one of the world’s most bankable action stars, and the world has never been the same. It all started with 1982’s aptly named First Blood, introducing us to Stallone’s Vietnam vet, John Rambo. The film is a seminal action classic... Read More »
- Matt Rooney
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