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Creed 3 Release Date, Plot, And Cast - What We Know So Far

When it comes to franchises that pack a punch, the "Rocky" series is second to none, starting in 1976 with the best picture-winning "Rocky" written by and starring Sylvester Stallone (via IMDb). The original film tells the story of an underdog, down-on-his-luck Philadelphia boxer who gets the chance of a lifetime to go toe-to-toe with the heavyweight champion Apollo Creed. "Rocky" was an explosive hit (Box Office Mojo), launching a thriving franchise that is still going strong today.

In 2015, nearly a decade after 2006's "Rocky Balboa," the series took a different direction with Ryan Coogler's "Creed." The film focuses on Michael B. Jordan's Adonis, the estranged son of Apollo Creed, and his journey to make a name for himself in the boxing arena with Rocky's help as a mentor.

"Creed" proved to be the breath of fresh air the franchise needed after years of stagnant sequels, earning over $170 million (per Box Office Mojo) and critical acclaim with a 95% Tomatometer score on Rotten Tomatoes. In 2018, its sequel "Creed II" was released. This time around, Adonis takes on Viktor Drago whose father, Ivan Drago, killed Apollo in the ring in "Rocky IV." While slightly less acclaimed than its predecessor, it was even more financially successful, earning $214 million worldwide (per Box Office Mojo).

It would only be a matter of time before another follow-up was announced. And with more details regarding its release finally coming from the woodwork, our minds are bursting with questions. Here's all we know so far about "Creed III."

When will Creed 3 premiere?

According to The Hollywood Reporter, "Creed III" is currently set to be released on November 23, 2022. The date was confirmed in March 2021 by Michael B. Jordan and MGM (per Deadline). Production of the film began in late January 2022, with Jordan spotted in Atlanta, Georgia (via MovieWeb). 

Notable in the film's production is that Jordan will not only be returning to the titular role, but also directing. The film will act as his directorial debut, following Ryan Coogler and Steven Caple Jr.'s efforts from the last two entries. Jordan told the Independent, "Directing has always been an aspiration, but the timing had to be right. 'Creed III' is that moment — a time in my life where I've grown more sure of who I am, holding agency in my own story, maturing personally, growing professionally and learning from the greats like Ryan Coogler, most recently Denzel Washington, and other top tier directors I respect."

The film will have a somewhat competitive opening weekend, which features two other highly-anticipated movies: Walt Disney Animation's "Strange World" and Steven Spielberg's semi-autobiographical drama, "The Fabelmans" (per The Numbers). The "Creed" franchise isn't a stranger to competitive weekends, as the first film premiered the same weekend as Pixar's "The Good Dinosaur" and the second was released the same weekend as "Ralph Breaks The Internet." Both times, the boxing movies came very close to the top (via Forbes and Deadline), so there's little doubt that "Creed III" will fight its way through the competition.

What is Creed 3 about?

At the moment, no official plot has been revealed for "Creed III," but that hasn't stopped fans from thinking up their own. One of the most common theories regarding the third film's plot suggests that Adonis Creed might be going up against the son of the opponent in "Rocky III," Clubber Lang (via Men's Health). In the 1982 film, Mr. T plays Lang, a hot-headed, young opponent who challenges Rocky and manages to briefly take the heavyweight title after besting the Philly boxer in a match. As can be predicted, Rocky, with some help from now-friend Apollo, takes on Lang once more and reigns victorious.

Since the previous "Creed" entry saw Adonis take on the son of another former Rocky adversary, this scenario doesn't sound too far off. However, recent details revealed could spell a very different picture about what the film will be like. In an interview with Michael B. Jordan's co-star Jonathan Majors, the actor stated, "Michael is really trying to do something different with this 'Creed.' Something that's a bit more intimate" (via NME). He continued, "It's a story about these two men trying to work something out, and it's very different from the others."

So while fans might be hoping to see character comebacks from the early films, it's just as likely that Jordan's vision for the final film might be something no one expects.

Who is in Creed 3?

Returning in "Creed III" are Michael B. Jordan, Tessa Thompson, Wood Harris, and Phylicia Rashad, to reprise their respective roles (via Variety). Additionally, Florian Munteanu is set to return as Viktor Drago. Whether this means a potential rematch between him and Adonis or a possible friendship between the two — similar to Rocky and Apollo — is yet to be seen.

Speaking of Rocky, one of the most talked-about aspects of "Creed III" is the involvement, or lack thereof, of Sylvester Stallone. As confirmed by Stallone himself, the Italian Stallion will not be appearing in the next installment. While sad, Jordan ensured that Balboa's spirit will remain intact. "We really want fans to be interested in Adonis and what that story has to say," Jordan explained to Yahoo! Entertainment. "There's going to be so many Rocky-isms that are forever going to stay with Adonis as he moves forward. So as far as page space, or whether or not Rocky comes back for this one, this is the 'Creed' franchise moving forward."

So who will be duking it out with Adonis this time around? Creed's newest rival will be none other than Jonathan Majors, best known for his work in the Netflix Western "The Harder They Fall." In an interview with Variety, Jordan praised Majors, saying, "He has so many different talents, and things that he brings to the table. He was just perfect for the role, so it was a match made in heaven. I'm extremely lucky. We're very blessed to have him and I can't wait for everybody to see what we do."