Sylvester Stallone Says ‘Rocky’ Couldn’t Have Been Accomplished Without Carl Weathers: “A Horrible Loss”

Rocky Balboa himself, Sylvester Stallone, took a moment to pay tribute to his co-star Carl Weathers, who died Thursday in his sleep at 76.

The actors fought it out in the ring for the first two films of the famous boxing franchise, and they remained friends in the decades following the final installment, 1985’s Rocky IV.

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Stallone shared a video on his Instagram Friday, remembering Weathers and their time together in their breakthrough films. In the caption, he partially wrote, “We lost a legend yesterday. My life was forever changed for the better the day I met Carl Weathers.”

In the minute-long video, the Tulsa King star explained that the film franchise wouldn’t have been what it became had it not been for Weathers’ Apollo Creed.

“Today is an incredibly sad day for me,” Stallone began the video. “I mean, I’m so torn up I can’t even tell you. I’m just trying to hold it in because Carl Weathers was such an integral part of my life, my success, everything about it. I give him incredible credit and kudos, because when he walked into that room, and I saw him for the first time, I saw greatness, but I didn’t realize how great.”

He continued, “I never could have accomplished what we did with Rocky without him. He was absolutely brilliant. His voice, his size, his power, his athletic ability, but more importantly, his heart, his soul. It’s a horrible loss.”

The Rambo star explained that he was standing in front of an abstract painting of him and Weathers because it was probably the last moment they were ever in the ring together, and that’s something he will never forget.

“He was magic, and I was so fortunate to be part of his life,” he concluded. “So, Apollo, keep punching.”

Amazon MGM Studios also shared in a statement, “Everyone at Amazon MGM Studios is devastated by the loss of the extraordinary Carl Weathers. Almost 50 years ago, he brought to life one of the most iconic characters to grace the screen, Apollo Creed — a character who will live on in our cinematic lives. Carl went on to build an inspiring career defined by a true Apollo Creed-like passion. That drive — accompanied by his unbelievable kindness and big heart — is a legacy that will live on in our industry and beyond for years to come. Our thoughts and deepest condolences are with Carl’s family and loved ones during this difficult time.”

Happy Gilmore director Dennis Dugan and star Adam Sandler also paid tribute to Weathers.

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