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A small-time boxer gets a supremely rare chance to fight a heavy-weight champion in a bout in which he strives to go the distance for his self-respect.

Director:

John G. Avildsen
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Popularity
717 ( 100)
Top Rated Movies #220 | Won 3 Oscars. Another 17 wins & 21 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Sylvester Stallone ... Rocky
Talia Shire ... Adrian
Burt Young ... Paulie
Carl Weathers ... Apollo
Burgess Meredith ... Mickey
Thayer David ... Jergens
Joe Spinell ... Gazzo
Jimmy Gambina ... Mike
Bill Baldwin ... Fight Announcer
Al Silvani ... Cut Man (as Al Salvani)
George Memmoli ... Ice Rink Attendant
Jodi Letizia ... Marie
Diana Lewis ... TV Commentator
George O'Hanlon ... TV Commentator
Larry Carroll ... TV Interviewer
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Storyline

Rocky Balboa is a struggling boxer trying to make the big time, working as a debt collector for a pittance. When heavyweight champion Apollo Creed visits Philadelphia, his managers want to set up an exhibition match between Creed and a struggling boxer, touting the fight as a chance for a "nobody" to become a "somebody". The match is supposed to be easily won by Creed, but someone forgot to tell Rocky, who sees this as his only shot at the big time. Written by Murray Chapman <muzzle@cs.uq.oz.au>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

His whole life has been a million-to-one shot...Now, Rocky Balboa is about to show the world that he's one-in-a-million. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sport

Certificate:

14 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Instagram | MGM

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

7 April 1977 (Netherlands) See more »

Also Known As:

Roki See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$960,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,000,000, 5 December 1976

Gross USA:

$117,235,247

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$225,000,000
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

After producers Irwin Winkler and Robert Chartoff became interested in the script, they offered Sylvester Stallone an unprecedented 350,000 dollars for the rights, but he refused to sell unless they agreed to allow him to star in the film (this despite the fact that he had only 106 dollars in the bank, no car and was trying to sell his dog because he couldn't afford to feed it). They agreed, but only on the condition that Stallone continue to work as a writer without a fee, and that he work as an actor for scale. After Winkler and Chartoff purchased the film, they took it to United Artists, who envisioned a budget of two million dollars, but that was on the basis of using an established star (they particularly wanted Robert Redford, Ryan O'Neal, Burt Reynolds or James Caan). United Artists didn't want Stallone to star, and when Winkler and Chartoff told them that the only way they could get him to sell the screenplay was to agree to cast him, United Artists cut the budget to one million dollars, and had Chartoff and Winkler sign agreements that if the film went over budget, they would be personally liable. The final cost of the film was 1.1 million dollars. The 0.1 million dollars came after Chartoff and Winkler mortgaged their houses, so as to complete the project. See more »

Goofs

Mickey states he's been in this racket for 50 years. Yet he mentions a fight back from 1923, which makes us 52 years already and that wasn't even his first match, otherwise he would have mentioned it. It would be also difficult for guy like Mickey to downplay how long he's been in the boxing business, especially when he' s trying to convince Rocky that he needs a manager. He would rather be either accurate or exaggerate. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Club fight attendee: Come on, Spider!
See more »

Crazy Credits

The film opens with the title of the film scrolling from right to left underscored by music. However, instead of just doing the opening credits for the cast, Rocky is shown boxing. The rest of the credits appear later as Rocky is shown walking down a street, and this time there is nothing underscoring the credits. See more »

Alternate Versions

In the DVD, the Dolby Digital & DTS 5.1 tracks omit a short musical cue of Rocky's theme when the bell rings at the end of the 15th round, which is present in the original mono soundtrack. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Atop the Fourth Wall: Popeye: Borned to the Sea #1 (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Summer Madness
(uncredited)
Performed by Kool & The Gang
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
What it is to be and "underdog"
14 November 2004 | by crumplerSee all my reviews

One of Stallone's first and finest feature film performances is as Rocky Balboa, a lonely, small-time boxer who gets by doing muscle work for a neighborhood loan shark. Everything about his life spells "underdog"-- he's even left-handed. He lives alone in a shabby apartment, and when he's not slowly being swept aside at the local gym, where even the trainer calls him a bum, he fauns over an introverted pet store clerk named Adrian.

He gets his first break when he's chosen at random by heavyweight champion, Apollo Creed, to take a shot at his title. No one thinks he can beat Creed-- not even Rocky. All Rocky wants is to be able to go all ten rounds with the champ, because no one else has. And in the final ten minutes of the film, Rocky finds out just how far he can go.

What's terrific about this movie is that it's about Rocky. It's not about winning; it's not even about fighting. It's about Rocky and his desire to get by in the world without being a bum. The sequels to this widely popular film have focused more heavily on the upcoming fight, whereas this story focuses on Rocky's life. He doesn't want to win; he just wants to survive and feel good about himself. That's what most of us want, and that's why this film is a classic.


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