Since its Thanksgiving release, Creed has been extremely popular with audiences responding to a new chapter in the Rocky movie series. Michael B. Jordan gives a star-making performance in the film and Sylvester Stallone reprising his most famous role just earned him a Golden Globe Awards nomination.
One of the things that makes Creed so compelling is its boxing scenes. With the camera in the ring alongside the fighters, the boxing action looks real. As it turns out, that’s because some of those punches really did land on the mark. Jordan was on Bill Simmons’ podcast last week and explained just how real some of the punches thrown were while filming.
During the interview, Jordan showed Simmons a video of him really taking a punch in one of the movie’s climactic scenes. As an audio podcast, we didn’t get to see the clip. But now, Sylvester Stallone has posted the raw footage on social media and you can see just how much Jordan suffered for his craft.
Jordan has this to say about the scene, when he appeared on Simmons’ podcast:
“The first couple times we tried to do [the punches], we tried to it with the slips. You know, and it’s slow motion, so you can see the misses — the space between the punches. So, all of a sudden, you just hear this snickering from the corner, and everybody’s like “What?” And Sly’s like, “Man you gotta take it.” I’m like, “What do you mean?” He’s like, “No, you gotta take a real punch.” Like, pretty much, I had to really get hit. And legally, Ryan [Coogler] — he’ll definitely tell you this — as a director, he can’t legally say “take the punch.” So I had to willingly step up and be like, “Alright, I’ll take the hit.” But I definitely got peer-pressured.”
It’s definitely honorable of Jordan to suck it up and take a punch to the face for the good of the movie. As he mentioned, Stallone was right there exerting peer pressure, and he’s shared stories about actually taking punches from Carl Weathers and Dolph Lundgren while filming the Rocky movies. But as the video shows, Tony Bellew’s blow wasn’t thrown with the ferociousness of an actual boxing punch, so Jordan was never really in too much danger.
What’s great is that we now have actual footage of this moment available, and the background story that goes with it makes it even better.