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Last Updated: Monday, 17 October 2005, 16:59 GMT 17:59 UK
Stallone back in ring for Rocky 6
Sylvester Stallone
Sylvester Stallone first played Rocky Balboa in 1976
Sylvester Stallone is to climb back into the ring for a sixth Rocky film.

The new movie will come 30 years after Stallone, now 59, shot to fame in the original and 15 years after the most recent instalment in the boxing series.

He will write and direct the movie as well as playing Rocky Balboa. Real-life champion Antonio Tarver is in talks to be the opponent in Rocky's final bout.

"We'll try to capture the essence of the first couple of films," Stallone told industry newspaper Variety.

Rocky became an iconic film figure in the 70s and 80s as Stallone portrayed the hero overcoming challenges in the ring and his personal life.


The first film won three Oscars in 1977, including best picture and best director - but many fans felt the series went gradually downhill after that.

The new movie will show Rocky as an ageing, lonely has-been in Philadelphia who is reluctant to come out of retirement.

"There's a computer fight between the reigning world champion and Balboa, and Balboa wins," Stallone told Variety.

"The champion's management says 'let's do this for real, for charity'.

"Rocky says 'no' but decides to be true to himself even though he's going to be berated by everyone. Just to compete, not to win."

'Last chapter'

Stallone added that aspects of Rocky's life often mirrored his own.

"I am drawing on a lot of my feelings that are in synch with many people's feelings about facing the last chapter of their lives and how they want it to be written," he said.

"Rocky goes through the scepticism of trying to go against the tide, to go against common sense."

Like Rocky, Stallone has been out of the spotlight for some time, appearing in a string of poorly-received action films in the years since the last Rocky film came out.

Hollywood 'factory'

He recently produced a reality TV show featuring would-be boxers vying for a $1m prize.

Stallone told Variety Hollywood was now a more "strict business" than when he started.

"It's not a dream factory now, it's a real factory. In a good way," he said.

There are also reports that Stallone will star in a new Rambo film.

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