Jaume Collet-Serra to Direct ‘Victory’ Remake at Warner Bros (Exclusive)

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Spanish director Jaume Collet-Serra will direct “Victory” at Warner Bros., a remake of the uplifting sports movie of the same name which starred Michael Caine, Sylvester Stallone and Pele, an individual with knowledge of the project exclusively told TheWrap.

Gavin O’Connor and Anthony Tambakis wrote a draft of the script in 2017. Tambakis is now doing a rewrite.

Gianni Nunnari and Bernie Goldmann are producing.

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The remake centers on the Nazi forces’ world-class English soccer coach John Colby, a POW with a history of trying to escape, effort to put together a team of other POW soccer stars for a game against the German national team in front of Hitler in occupied Paris. When given the opportunity to escape during the game, the players must decide whether to humiliate the Nazis in the eyes of the world and spark a resistance or to save their own lives.

Collet-Serra, who is also attached to direct “Waco” for Annapurna, is currently in post-production on Disney’s “Jungle Cruise,” which is set to star Dwayne Johnson. Collet-Serra recently directed “The Commuter” for Lionsgate which starred Liam Neeson and made $120 million worldwide on a budget of $30 million. His other credits include genre hit “Orphan,” Unknown,” “Non-Stop,” “Run All Night” and shark thriller “The Shallows,” which grossed $119 million worldwide on a $17 million budget.

Serra is repped by CAA.

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Sylvester Stallone’s ‘Rambo: Last Blood’ Gets September Release Date

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Sylvester Stallone’s “Rambo: Last Blood” will hit theaters on September 20, 2019, in wide release, Lionsgate announced Thursday.

Adrian Grunberg is directing the film that also stars Paz Vega, Sergio Peris-Mencheta and Yvette Monreal. Stallone will be 73 years old when the movie hits theaters — it’s been 11 years since he last starred in a “Rambo” film.

“Last Blood” will end the saga that began with 1982’s “First Blood,” which was directed by Ted Kotcheff and starred Stallone as John Rambo, a troubled Vietnam vet. The film’s success prompted a franchise that consisted of four more sequels, all of which were co-written by and starred Stallone.

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The “Rambo” films have grossed almost $300 million domestically. Back in 2009, a fifth “Rambo” film was initially announced by Millennium Films after the fourth “Rambo” grossed $113 million worldwide against a $50 million budget. But the project was dropped a year later, with Stallone saying in an interview with Empire magazine that he was retiring the character.

In the years since, Stallone has starred in the action series “The Expendables” while returning to play his most famous role, Rocky Balboa, in Ryan Coogler’s “Creed.” His seventh performance as the boxer earned him a Golden Globe and a nomination for Best Supporting Actor at the Oscars, and he will return to the role again in “Creed II” later this year.

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Currently, the “Downton Abbey” film and Naomi Harris’ “Black and Blue” are slated for release on that date.

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All 35 DreamWorks Animation Movies Ranked From Worst to Best (Photos)

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MGM Boards Sylvester Stallone’s Dark Superhero Movie ‘Samaritan’

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Razzie Awards: Every Worst Picture ‘Winner,’ From ‘Can’t Stop the Music’ to ‘The Emoji Movie’ (Photos)

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Andy Vajna, ‘Rambo’ Producer, Dies at 74

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Andy Vajna, Hungarian producer who worked with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone on some of their most popular films, has died at  his home in Budapest. His death was reported by Hungary’s National Film Fund. He was 74.

Vajna was a producer on several major action films, including Stallone’s “Rambo” series and Schwarzenegger’s “Total Recall” and ‘Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines.” He also served as a producer on Madonna’s adaptation of “Evita.”

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More recently, Vajna had served as Hungary’s film commissioner since 2011, working to revitalize the country’s film industry. His work has been credited with a revival in the country over the last decade, peaking with Laszlo Nemes’ “Son of Saul” winning the Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film in 2016.

Schwarzenegger offered his condolences with a tweet honoring Vajna’s life.

“Andy Vajna was a dear friend and a revolutionary force in Hollywood. He proved that you don’t need studios to make huge movies like Terminator 2 or Total Recall,” he wrote. “He had a huge heart, and he was one of the most generous guys around. I’ll miss him. My thoughts are with his family.”

Stallone also extended his sympathy, writing on Instagram: “A very very sad day … Producer ANDY VANYA , the man that Made Rambo happened, died today… LOVED this man’s courage – a pioneer. Believed In making FIRST BLOOD when no one else did….This truly breaks my heart. Rip”

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Dolph Lundgren Says Sylvester Stallone Isn’t Ready to Stop Playing Rocky Yet: ‘I’ve Heard That Before’

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Could Sylvester Stallone be throwing in the towel as portraying Rocky Balboa? Dolph Lundgren, the actor who played his greatest foe, Ivan Drago, doesn’t buy it.

Stallone posted a video on Instagram Wednesday teasing that his time playing Rocky could be coming to an end as he steps aside for Michael B. Jordan’s Adonis Creed. But Lundgren responded to that video early Thursday and expressed his doubts.

“I’ve heard that before,” Lundgren told Ben Shephard and Susanna Reid on “Good Morning Britain” (via Digital Spy). “I don’t really believe it, but we’ll see.”

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Florian Munteanu, the actor who plays Drago’s son, Victor Drago, in “Creed II,” also wasn’t sure about Stallone’s proclamation, guessing that he still might make cameos as Rocky in future installments.

“I don’t think so either, but maybe not the big way that he turned out in the Rocky and the Creed franchise,” Munteanu said. “I think, like, a smaller role maybe. We’ll see.”

“Creed II” stars Stallone as he trains Jordan’s Adonis Creed, now a boxing champion, to take on Victor Drago, whose father Ivan Drago killed Creed’s father, Apollo Creed, in the ring in “Rocky IV.”

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Stallone wrote in an Instagram post, along with a video shot from a beach with the cast and crew of “Creed II,” that “all things must pass…and end.”

“This is probably my last rodeo,” Stallone said. “As I step back, as my story has been told, there’s a whole new world that’s going to be opening up for the audience, for this generation.”

“I thought Rocky was over in 2006, and I was very happy with that,” he added. “And then all of a sudden this young man (Jordan) presented himself, and the whole story changed. It goes on to a new generation, new problems, new adventures.”

“Creed II” is in theaters now. Watch Stallone’s Instagram video below:

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Does ‘Creed 2’ Have a Post-Credits Scene?

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Adonis Creed (or Adonis Johnson) is back! “Creed” writer/director Ryan Coogler may have moved on, but “Creed 2” is still in capable hands with director Steven Caple Jr and writer Cheo Hodari Coker, prompting another exciting Thanksgiving holiday spent in with crying dads in a movie theater as young Adonis faces off against the son of Ivan Drago (Dolph Lundgren), the man who was responsible for his father’s death back in “Rocky IV.”

“Creed 2” being the eighth film in the “Rocky” franchise and the second focused on Apollo Creed’s son (Michael B Jordan), there’s plenty of reason to suspect that that it won’t be the last in this series. And with long-running franchises often come teases for future films after the credits roll in the form of a mid-credits or post-credits scene. Which can be a bit frustrating when you’ve been sitting in a theater for two hours and ten minutes and really need to go to the bathroom.

So, do you need to stick around any bonus scenes once the credits roll on “Creed 2,” or is it safe to head out if you need to?

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Even though we here at TheWrap strongly encourage everyone to watch the credits of every film out of respect for those responsible for bringing it to life — you might be happy to learn that it is safe to leave the theater once the credits start on “Creed 2” because it does not contain either a mid-credits or post-credits scene.

Once the movie ends, it really does end. There’s nothing to stick around for if you need to get out of there as soon as possible.

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How in the world did we get two spinoffs out of “Rocky IV”? Granted, it’s not the most pressing question on your mind as you watch the agreeably paint-by-numbers “Creed II,” the inevitable sequel to Ryan Coogler’s 2015 hit. “Creed” reignited the “Rocky” franchise with the story of the late Apollo Creed’s outside-of-marriage son Adonis, played by Michael B. Jordan as a brooding young man contending with the legacy of a champion he never knew.

But it is a bit of a head-scratcher that the worst entry in Sylvester Stallone’s initial series — in which Rocky Balboa’s fight against Ivan Drago (Dolph Lundgren) was really jingoistic America versus a cartoon Soviet Union, which was really aging action star versus bulked-up newcomer, but which was REALLY Stallone’s terrible direction pummeling the crap out of Eisenstein’s theory of montage — also sowed the seeds for its newfound appreciation and reworked survival. Apollo’s death in the ring against Drago happened, after all, in “Rocky IV,” and now the Drago matchup returns to animate the son’s story in “Creed II,” where filmmaker Steven Caple, Jr. takes over the reins from the now hotter-than-hot Coogler.

Dads and sons (and one daughter) are all over the place in “Creed II,” enough to make one wonder why its release wasn’t tied to Father’s Day. Screenwriters Juel Taylor and Rocky-universe originator Stallone, working from a story by Sascha Penn and Cheo Hodari Coker, dip into no fewer than five instances of emotionally fraught cross-generational relationships, including Ivan Drago (a returning Lundgren) shaping his bruiser of a boy Viktor (slab-like Romanian pugilist Florian “Big Nasty” Munteanu) to be Adonis’s new competitor for the heavyweight title, Rocky (Stallone) dealing with his own self-imposed distance from grown son Robert (Milo Ventimiglia), and a reminder that even Wood Harris’s character has the trainer DNA of Tony Burton’s coach role from all the “Rocky” movies.

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Picking up three years after the previous film, “Creed II” starts in the Ukraine, where Viktor Drago, under the watchful eye of his daddy, is crushing an opponent in a dankly lit arena, a muted-palette callback in Kramer Morgenthau’s cinematography to the hidden-away Mexican bouts that introduced us to Adonis’s undiscovered boxing prowess in “Creed.” In America, meanwhile, Adonis’s sterling career under Philly’s favorite son has finally earned him a heavyweight title bout, even if it hasn’t fully prepared him to handle the nerves of proposing to singer girlfriend Bianca (Tessa Thompson).

While “Creed” struggled to fit Bianca’s outspokenness and independence into its masculine-centered narrative, the budding-family moments between Jordan and a more fully-involved Thompson have the lived-in, real-couple appeal that animated the Rocky-Adrian relationship in the franchise’s early days. Sometimes the familiarity that comes with a sequel — especially with good actors — can be a blessing in short-handing a dramatic tone.

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What the story beats of these movies are built around, though, are the fights. When a savvy promoter (Russell Hornsby, “The Hate U Give”) publicly airs the notion of Apollo Creed’s son truly proving his worth by fighting the spawn of the brute who dealt his father a death blow, everyone’s triggered. Adonis’s sense of righting a tragedy is inflamed, while Bianca and his mother Mary Anne (Phylicia Rashad) know they can’t convince him not to fight him but show plenty of worry in their tone. Only Rocky, still scarred by the fact that he couldn’t save his friend’s life 30 years ago, pushes back, refusing to coach him. Adonis preps without him, and in the way of all “Rocky” movies, a clock-cleaning gives way to healing, reflection, reunion, music-scored training (this time in the desert) and an avenging comeback.

The Drago storyline, meanwhile, renews Lundgren’s granite menace and accented threats {“Moy son will br-r-reak yorr boy”), but with the added psychology of Ivan as a disgraced, forgotten national hero abandoned by Viktor’s mother, which also means the return of Brigitte Nielsen. That Lundgren finally gets to give a real performance is, one supposes, an improvement — Caple’s direction of this material is in line with Coogler’s low-key, indie vibe — but we’re still talking a movie series almost proud of its emotional predictability.

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And yet Jordan remains a model of dimensional ferocity, laced with the right vulnerability. And Stallone is Stallone is Stallone; is he really going to change up the mumbly, heartfelt galoot act eight films in? Or the platitude-go-round he calls writing? The variations on the same what-are-you-fighting-for dialogues throughout “Creed II” are almost impressive in their shameless repetitiveness.

Which leaves the canvas battles, and they faithfully meet today’s standards for performance realism, camera kinetics, editing rhythm, and body-blow sound design while thankfully avoiding the oily sheen Stallone favored in the ’80s. The truth is that “Rocky IV” and “Creed II” sharing the same cinematic universe requires supreme suspension of disbelief. But taken as descendants of the original, “Rocky IV” is the delinquent you never talk about, while “Creed II” at least knows how to keep the family business humming.



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