Tony Bellew gave an insight into the weeks preluding him signing to play antagonist Ricky Conlan in Creed – and how Hollywood royalty Sylvester Stallone even ended up watching one of the proud Scouser’s fights.
The former WBC cruiserweight champion made his acting debut in 2016 in the Rocky spin-off, which ended up being a box office hit.
Appearing on the Winners Talking podcast, Bellew revealed he told Creed director Ryan Coogler that had he lost in his hotly anticipated rematch with long term rival Nathan Cleverly, then Bellew wouldn’t have been able to bring himself to go to tinsel town.
‘The Bomber’ then went on to say this lead to Coogler, ‘Sly’ Stallone and Creed himself Michael B Jordan being glued to the screen in America for Bellew vs Cleverly 2 in 2014.
“I was the last one to sign the contract [for Creed] because I had the Cleverly fight in 13 weeks. So I knew for a fact Ryan Coogler, Michael B Jordan and Sylvester Stallone were sat in America watching me fight Nathan Cleverly!”
“Because I said at the time if I lost that fight then I wouldn’t do the movie. And I’m pretty adamant I wouldn’t have done it, because the shame of losing for me is the biggest shame in the world. There’s no way I could have lost that fight and then went to Hollywood, I would have been known as a complete failure.”
“Thankfully it worked out alright – I can’t complain. It’s a nice story.”
Bellew recently confirmed he will be reprising the character of Ricky Conlan and returning to the big screen for Creed 3, expected to hit theatres sometime in 2023.