After revealing earlier this year that he was working on finishing a 'Director's cut' of Rocky IV, Slyvester Stallone has shared never before seen footage from the film on his Instagram account. The scene in question shows Rocky Balboa, played by Stallone, and his menacing Russian opponent Ivan Drago, played by Dolph Lundgren, at a press meeting.
In one clip shared by Sylvester Stallone, we can see the actor providing directions to Lundgren on how to deliver his line, "I cannot be defeated." In another clip, we see footage of the same scene, with Lundgren smiling happily moments before filming starts, at which point he immediately becomes poker-faced as he once again declares he cannot be defeated.
In the description, Stallone refers to the unreleased pieces of footage as parts of a giant puzzle, indicating that the actor/producer/filmmaker is hard at work assembling the director's cut of Rocky 4 as he had promised. In this endeavor, he had the full support of Lundgren, who wrote about his admiration for Stallone in the comment section of the footage,
"To even get one film made in Hollywood is close to impossible. To write, direct, produce and star in a film that people all over the world still love 35 years later - that's what you call a supreme achievement. Sly, you're amazing. That's the truth (fist bump)."
Released in 1985, Rocky 4 made use of the existing political backdrop at the time with regards to the cold war between American and Russia. While Rocky is living a happy life with his family, Drago arrives from the Soviet Union to challenge him to a fight. Instead, Rocky's friend Apollo agrees to fight Drago and loses his life in the process, prompting Rocky to once again step back into the ring against the monstrous Drago in a bid to avenge his friend's death.
Although critics were less than warm towards Rocky 4, the movie has since gone on to have an enduring impact on pop culture. The film was groundbreaking in its approach to action scenes at the time, using sounds of actual punches and blows, having the actors legitimately sparring during matches, and working with real boxing consultants to create authentic training methods, which have since been used by regular trainers and Olympic-level athletes.
While fans are looking forward to the director's cut of Rocky 4 to release soon, Stallone also plans on making a new movie in the franchise, which he has previously hinted could be a lot more political in nature.
"[Rocky] finds this fella in the country illegally and it becomes a whole thing. That could be different. You throw him out of the country and into another world."
It would certainly be interesting to see Rocky stepping out of America and exploring the rest of the world as he takes on a fresh set of present-day challenges with his trademark determination and never-say-die spirit.