Sylvester Stallone became an icon after he had written and starred in Rocky. The initial film would eventually spawn a franchise that has now covered five additional sequels. Though Stallone had written and starred in the film, he does not own the rights to the franchise. The rights fall squarely to Irwin Winkler, who produced the original franchise. He also owns the rights to Creed, as that is an extension of the Rocky universe. This has led to Stallone begging for years to be able to purchase the rights back. However, he has seemingly gone about this in an odd way. He recently posted on Instagram with an image of Winkler as a snake with a knife in his mouth. You can see the image below:
The nature of the film business can be quite cutthroat. Marvel barely regained the rights to most of its heroes after Disney had purchased Fox. Disney also owns Marvel. But it took a long time for that to happen. Sylvester Stallone has been begging for years to get the rights to Rocky back in his hands, and the above picture might not be the way to go about it. In fact, maybe Stallone might strike a deal with Michael B. Jordan to purchase the rights together, as Jordan has been the star of the Creed spin-off films. This is just an idea but calling the producer who owns the right to a franchise a snake is likely not going to help his case.
Within the text of the post, Sylvester Stallone states that Winkler passing the rights to “only your children” is a bit unfair. He also adds, “This is a painful subject That eats at my soul because I wanted to leave something of Rocky for my children, but it’s always great hearing from the loyal fans.” We can imagine the deep feelings of regret that the man has after he had written and starred in the original film, only to have the rights of the film not fall under his own name. When the first Rocky film calm out in 1976, Stallone had made a mere $75,000 for writing the script and acting. However, he struck a deal for 10 net points which resulted in earning a total of $2.5 million. Those are huge numbers in the 1970s.
We do feel for Sylvester Stallone, and honestly, he should own the rights to Rocky. Without Stallone, that film would not have turned into a massive universe that stretches five additional sequels. However, the man might think about a better way to approach common ground with Winkler. Creed is set to release the third film in November, and this will be the first film in the franchise that Stallone will not be in. However, he will be serving as a producer. Maybe he can strike a deal with Winkler before the film is set to debut.
For now, fans will have to be patient to see if Winkler will budge, and Sylvester Stallone can regain the rights to his most beloved franchise. Maybe not portraying the man as a snake can be the first step in regaining those rights. We hope Stallone can figure the business aspect out so that the legend of Rocky will stay under his name for the foreseeable future.