United Artists/Getty Images
Sylvester Stallone and Carl Weathers shake hands and smile together during a press conference in a still from the film ‘Rocky,’ directed by John G. Avildsen, 1976.
After a prolific actor Carl Weathers passed away On Thursday, several of his co-stars were quick to pay tribute and share their feelings about his legacy, including Pedro Pascal, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone, who said in a heartfelt video posted on instagram that “I would never have been able to achieve what we did with ‘Rocky’ without him.”
Weathers played main antagonist Apollo Creed in the original Oscar-winning 1976 film “Rocky,” and then challenged Stallone’s titular boxer to a rematch in “Rocky II” three years later.
The late star also appeared in the third and fourth installments of the franchise until 1985. His character’s son, played by Michael B. Jordan, is the central figure of the popular “Creed” sequel franchise that began in 2015.
In his social media video on Friday, Stallone said he was “heartbroken” by the loss of Weathers, whom he called “an integral part of my life” and “my success.”
“I give him incredible credit and recognition 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 it was,” Stallone continued.
Chelsea Lauren/Variety/Penske Media/Getty Images
Carl Weathers, Sylvester Stallone and Michael B. Jordan at the premiere of the film ‘Creed’, Los Angeles, November 2015.
It’s an accurate sentiment, since Weathers, who has been in franchise-spawning titles, including his memorable role as part of Schwarzenegger’s platoon of doomed mercenaries hunted in the jungle in 1987’s “Predator,” hasn’t always been regarded as a high ranking member. from the pantheon of muscular, blockbuster action stars like those of the “Expendables” franchise (which counts Arnold and Sly among them), but it should be.
“He was absolutely brilliant: his voice, his size, his power, his athletic ability. But the most important thing is the heart of him, the soul of him,” Stallone said this week.
He spoke to the camera while standing in front of a painting depicting a scene the couple shared in one of the “Rocky” movies. He said it was probably one of the last moments they were together in the boxing ring and “I’ll never forget it.”
According to Weathers’ manager, Matt Luber, the Emmy-nominated “Mandalorian” actor “died peacefully at home” on Thursday at age 76. The cause of death was not immediately known.
“He was magical and I was very lucky to be a part of his life,” Stallone said. “So, Apollo, keep hitting.”