It's hard to believe that it's been 36 years since 1985's Rocky IV, which was the highest-grossing of the franchise, including the sequel films with Creed. The only film to make $300 million globally at the box office, the film's star and director Sylvester Stallone re-edited the film for his director's cut taking it to Instagram for the news. "ROCKY VS DRAGO !!!! Coming pretty soon. It will Premier in Philly, which is going to be fantastic!"
The new poster shows the near silhouette of Stallone's Rocky in the shadow of a larger-than-life Ivan Drago, played by Dolph Lundgren. The original film is set during the Cold War setting of the US and the Soviet Union rivalry. Drago took the boxing world by storm with his imposing frame and devastating power. In arguably the franchise's most pivotal moment, the Russian takes on Rocky's one-time rival-turned-best-friend Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers) to tragic results. To avenge his fallen friend, the Italian Stallion went through the kind of rigorous training, unlike anything he's ever been through before.
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The climactic fight between the two became one of cinematic legend despite the largely predictable outcome of the film. While it was a joy to watch, it added another element to Stallone's Rocky in future films where he never quite recovered from his fight mentally. While Rocky IV held the record for highest-grossing sports film for 24 years until 2009's The Blind Side, the film continues to be one of the most culturally relevant of all time. The rivalry was revitalized in 2018's Creed II when Apollo's son Adonis (Michael B. Jordan) faced against Ivan's son Viktor (Floran Muneanu) at a boxing ring that saw Lundgren's return to the franchise. Not much has been revealed about Rocky IV Director's Cut other than Paulie's (Burt Young) robot's left to the cutting room floor.