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Featured Image Credit: Credit: United Artists
Sylvester Stallone has revealed how he could've died during the shooting of Rocky IV, after one of his fights scenes with Dolph Lundgren went badly wrong.
The fictional Rocky Balboa endured arguably his toughest ever fight in Rocky IV, defeating the steroid-pumped Russian Ivan Drago but at a cost of his boxing licence, with his injuries sustained in the fight leading to his retirement from the ring - unless you count that exhibition comeback in 2006's Rocky Balboa. Which we don't.
However, the battle between the two characters could've had serious real life repercussions for Stallone too, as he revealed in a recent interview.
Speaking ahead of a re-cut release of the 1985 film, the Daily Mail reported that Stallone said: "In the first round, where he knocked me down, that is for real.
"He pulverized me and I did not feel it at that moment but later that night my heart started to swell."
Stallone went on to say: "He had bruised the perio cardio sac, which is when the heart hits the chest - like in a car accident when your chest hits the steering wheel.
"My blood pressure went up to 260. They thought I was going to be talking to angels."
Thankfully, as we know, Stallone was fine and went on to appear in Rocky V and Rocky Balboa, as well as the Michael B. Jordan-starring Creed and Creed II.
In 2018, Stallone seemed to officially retire the character. In an Instagram post accompanying a video, he wrote: "I just want to thank everyone around the whole wide world for taking the Rocky family into their hearts for over 40 years.
It's been my ultimate privilege to have been able to create and play this meaningful character."
"Though it breaks my heart, Sadly all things must pass... and end. I love you kind and generous people, and the most wonderful thing of all, is that ROCKY will never die because he lives on in you."
However, less than a year later there were rumours Rocky VII may in fact be on the cards, while earlier this year Stallone revealed that he had been working on a script for a Rocky prequel, to be made into a TV series.
Writing on Instagram, the actor said: "This may be the strangest posting yet. I started out this morning by writing a treatment for a Rocky prequel for streaming.
"Ideally 10 episodes for a few seasons to really get to the heart of the characters in there [sic] younger years.
"Here is a small portion of how my creative writing process starts...hope it happens - and then I needed to clear my head so I went fishing... Talk about extremes! Keep punching my friends."
it seems like Rocky may be one character that the veteran actor is going to keep a hold of for life.