‘Creed III’ will open in theaters on March 3rd and is the third film in the ‘Creed’ series, the ninth movie set in the ‘Rocky’ universe, and the first film directed by actor Michael B. Jordan.
“You can’t run from your past.”
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After dominating the boxing world, Adonis Creed has been thriving in both his career and family life. When a childhood friend and former boxing prodigy, Damien Anderson,… Read the Plot
What is ‘Creed III’ about?
‘Creed III’ follows the events of 2018’s ‘Creed II,’ and features Adonis “Donnie” Creed (Michael B. Jordan) ready to retire from professional boxing as the undisputed Heavy Weight Champion of the World. But when Donnie’s childhood friend and former boxing prodigy, Damian “Dame” Anderson (Jonathan Majors), resurfaces after serving a long prison sentence, he asks Donnie for help returning to the ring and winning the championship. But once Anderson is champion, he turns on Donnie personally and publicly, forcing Creed back into the ring to fight his former friend, facing an opponent he’s never fought before – a fighter who has nothing to lose!
Who is in the cast of ‘Creed III?’
‘Creed III’ stars Michael B. Jordan (‘Black Panther’) as Adonis “Donnie” Creed, Tessa Thompson (‘Thor: Love and Thunder’) as Bianca Taylor, Jonathan Majors (‘Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania’) as Damian “Dame” Anderson, Wood Harris (‘Blade Runner 2049’) as Tony “Little Duke” Evers, Florian Munteanu (‘Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings’) as Viktor Drago, and Phylicia Rashad (‘Tick, Tick… BOOM!’) as Mary Anne Creed.
Moviefone recently had the pleasure of speaking with actor and director Michael B. Jordan and actor Jonathan Majors about their work on ‘Creed III,’ what viewers need to know to prepare for this film, the deep relationship between Donnie and Dame, and Jordan’s work behind the camera.
Moviefone: To begin with, what would each of you say to viewers sitting down to watch this movie to prepare them for the film experience they are about to have?
Michael B. Jordan: I mean, just have an open mind and an open heart, and buckle up because it’s a ride. Once we get started, I’ll see you in two hours and I’ll check in on you on how you feel.
Jonathan Majors: There’s no way to prepare yourself for ‘Creed III.’ You got to come in with your dukes up. Doesn’t matter, it’s a knockout. Bob and weave, come with an open heart, and come with an open mind. These are familiar characters being looked at in a very different way. You’re going to see Adonis Creed in a very unique way that’s going to give you even more insight to the hero, primarily because of the introduction of Damian Anderson, his long lost friend. You’re in for a wild fight. Flex them up!
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MF: Michael, can you talk about your vision for this film, particularly the fight sequences, and as a director, what it was like working with your cast and crew to execute that?
MBJ: I mean, as far as the boxing sequences for me, it’s probably the part of the story that I’ve daydreamed and thought about the most over the past eight years. When you’re involved in a process and you think about boxing and fights, there’s certain things that you’re curious about wanting to try, and obviously they don’t make it to every movie. So I’ve been kind of compiling a list of things that I’ve always wanted to kind of try, and then also trying to make this one feel fresh and different.
So leaning on my love of Japanese anime and the spirit of that, and how I can make things feel different, and pitching that to my cast and my crew. Getting everybody on the same visual reference point of what kind of film we’re making, and what type of creative swings that we would be taking and just going out and just doing it. It’s like you got to go for it. So I think my love of anime definitely helped me creatively and artistically take some creative swings.
MF: Jonathan, what was it like working with Michael, both as a scene partner and as a director?
JM: It was incredible. It was an experience as an actor, I’ve not had, and I don’t see it coming down the pipeline again. Where you have an actor that’s going to lead his own franchise as an actor and then also direct it. That’s just not something that people are driven to do. I mean, that seems quite difficult. It is difficult. I watched him deal with that difficulty with grace, elegance, confidence and conviction.
Because of that, we have the picture we have, and he gave a hell of a performance. So I got to witness it and it was a team effort, the building of Dame and the making of this film. But he was a leader throughout and he really orchestrated every day, even in the chaos, he was there and present, boots on the ground, gloves on to help us craft a story. So I can’t imagine, I don’t think anybody else could have directed the film, even if Mike was in it, and have the same outcome. I think this outcome is quite beneficial to cinema and to audiences.
MF: Finally, one of the taglines of the film is, “How do you fight a fighter with nothing to lose?” But I think it really should be, “How do you fight a fighter who knows you better than you know yourself?” Can you talk about the personal history between Dame and Donnie, and why that makes Anderson such a dangerous opponent for Creed?
MBJ: Well, I feel like the people that know you the most could hurt you the worst. So I think it’s one of those things where I really wanted to go back to Adonis’s childhood and make this an origin story of sorts, and a sequel and a trilogy all in one. And it’s also a origin story for Dame as well.
So I think to be able to go back there and go through that childhood trauma, and really understand Adonis’s first relationship, his first friendship, his first heartbreak, his first betrayal, just when he first get inspired, who taught him how to fight, who protected him, and all those things that make up the man that he is today, that we know him as. Then we pick up in present day and we have a little bit more context of who he is.
But then also you have to address your past in order to really move forward and become the best version of yourself. So we wanted to see Adonis struggle with that, and struggle to talk about his past, and struggle to talk about how he feels about certain things, and see what that does to the people that are around him, his loved ones. How does that affect them? How does that affect him? Then to see him pull it out and actually rise to the mountaintop, I thought was truly inspiring.
JM: Yeah, it’s a familiar trope, isn’t it? But it’s probably the most real and the most dangerous. When you fight someone that knows you better than you know yourself, the only way to win is to grow and to engender something new in yourself. That’s very interesting.
Dame is literally the fellow who taught Adonis how to fight, and how to throw those punches. Yes, he is from the Creed stock, he is the son of a champion, but that champion was not there to teach him how to use the tools that he was given, endowed with by birth. Dame is the one who teaches him how to exercise his birth right. So there’s a social and an emotional debt that someone has to overcome.
So it transcends this idea of, “Oh, I know you physically. I know you socially and emotionally.” So I mean, that’s why we have our picture. Dame represents that in such a strong way that it really is a David vs. Goliath story on multiple levels. Adonis has to overcome that. And in the overcoming of it, he grows.
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‘Creed III’ is produced by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Chartoff-Winkler Productions, Outlier Society Productions, Proximity Media, and Balboa Productions, and is scheduled for release on March 3rd.