Rocky and Rambo PodCasts

Earlier this week, I received the following e-mail:

Hi Mr. Zablo,
I’m Mat Bradley-Tschirgi, Producer of the Sequelcast, a podcast looking at movie franchises. I’d thought you and your StalloneZone readers would be interested in checking out the podcasts we did of the Rocky films this past month. We also covered the Rambo films a few years ago. The podcasts might contain brief moments of explicit language.
Here are the links:
ROCKY III (Guest Paul Goebel of Beat The Geeks):
ROCKY IV (Guest Eric Lichtenfeld of The Ultimate Stallone Reader):
ROCKY V (Guest Ryan Hoss of the Super Mario Bros. The Movie Archive):
ROCKY BALBOA (Guest West Anthony of The Auteurcast):
FIRST BLOOD (Guest David Morrell [author of the original First Blood novel]):
RAMBO (Guest Eric Lichtenfeld [author of Action Speaks Louder]):
Keep up the good work with StalloneZone. The Expendables 3 looks to have a mightier cast than the second. I’m just wondering where Barney’s goatee went in all the promo shots for the film.
Mat Bradley-Tschirgi
Thanks Mat for the kind words and the links to the Stallone-related podcasts! – Craig

Ted Kotcheff Talks Sly, “First Blood” and More

On March 31, 2014, HeyUGuys posted an interview with director Ted Kotcheff who talked about working with Sly on First Blood   and a lot of other things.   Here are some tidbits…

The received wisdom in Hollywood was that Stallone only worked as Rocky, so my decision to hire him wasn’t championed.

I sent the script to Sylvester regardless, and he called me the next day to say he loved the idea. I’ve never had such a quick and positive response from a star in my whole career in the business (laughs). He only had one request, and that was to do a rewrite on the script with me, to which I agreed. One of the biggest strengths Sylvester has is a great populist sense of what works. He knows what audiences like and dislike in a film.

 …[an] idea he [Sly] had was to keep John Rambo silent throughout the film. Directors love extreme ideas like that (laughs).

 We always considered Rambo to be on a suicide mission, which was how the original script ended. The moment he crosses that bridge he knows his outcome and it’s not going to end well, but he’s doesn’t care because as far as concerned – there isn’t a place left for him in American society anymore. The way it was written originally, [Colonel] Trautman was going to put an end to it all but instead hesitates, so Rambo grabs his weapon and pulls the trigger, blowing himself away. We shot that, which was brilliant, but Sylvester came over afterwards and said the audience would hate us for putting this character through everything only to have him killed at the very end.


5 Essential Sylvester Stallone Films

On January 30, 2013, posted 5 Essential Sylvester Stallone FilmsTheir choices [with embeded trailers]:

  1. Rocky
  2. First Blood
  3. Cop Land
  4. Rocky Balboa
  5. The Expendables
While it would be hard to argue with their list, I think I would pair Rocky/Rocky Balboa and First Blood / Rambo.  This would open up two slots and I’d add: Get Carter and Nighthawks. – Craig

Rambo Bridge Sculpt Action for Charity

SZoners, Here’s an important message from Reegs about the Rambo Bridge Sculpture Auction with all proceeds going to charity.  Take it away, Reegs

“Guys as some of you may know, the First Blood Bridge sculpture that I was kindly given by Inge Wilson, Brian McKinney and Riley Forman of Hope BC will be auctioned off on eBay starting midnight Nov 30th and will run through until Christmas Eve!

I have also donated a yellow First Blood Rambo bridge sign and RAM30 baseball cap which were only available at the 30th, to help promote the sale, which is for a very worthy cause, which is for the Fraser Canyon Hospice. All the proceeds will go to Camp Skylark which helps young children come to terms with losing a parent through death.


Here is a promotional video that I compiled and my friend Jerome who is also a fellow zoner edited and made it just so poignant to the cause. I couldn’t have done this without Jerome’s hard work and skills.


So PLEASE bid generously!  Here’s the link to the auction.


– Reegs

Want to Own a Piece of the “Rambo Bridge”?

Recently, SZoner, Reegs aka Raven sent in the following:

  • Hi Craig
  • I was wondering if you could help me at all? As you may have read in my Junk In Your Pockets thread, was that I was awarded along with a few others, a sculpt made from parts of the Rambo bridge. It was a huge surprise to get it, and it for me was just about the ultimate collectors item for the movie apart from Sly’s screen used costume or knife. Although I was honored and ecstatic with the gift, I knew right away what I had to do with it, so as I was at the mike accepting it, I gave it back, asking that it went to Camp Skylark, which is a local Hope charity sponsored by the Fraser canyon Hospice, which is a summer camp for children who have lost a parent through death.
  • It is now in Inge Wilson’s (Hope visitor center) safe keeping, and will be auctioned off very shortly, with that in mind pal, would you be able to maybe make an announcement about this on your front page on this site? Any help would be very much appreciated buddy, the more people know about the auction, hopefully the more money can be raised for this worthy charity.

Happy to help.  It was great of you to donate your piece.  Hopefully a true fan will end up with it!  – Craig

Coverage of the Hope, First Blood Anniversary Celebration

I recently received the following e-mail from SZoner, Curtis.  Curtis was at the recent celebration of the 30th anniversary of the filming of First Blood.  Here’s what Curtis had to say…

  • Hello Craig,
  • How’s everything? As you probably already know from other S-Zoners who were there, the First Blood event in Hope took place over the (Canadian) Thanksgiving weekend at the beginning of October. At the 25th anniversary, I was the only one taking video…this time, the organizers were making their own documentary, there was a team of professional documentary makers from Seattle (I think) up to record the events, and Herve from France was doing plenty of filming too (with some very impressive gear). I felt a bit embarrassed with my puny little camera!
  • My wife Silmara is originally from Brazil, so a Brazilian entertainment website, Omelete, commissioned some photos, video and an article about the anniversary from us. The article is in Portuguese, but you’ll be able to enjoy the video – just three minutes of highlights from the weekend.You can check it out here.
  • Feel free to post the link on your site if you think it’ll be of interest to other Stallone/Rambo fans.It was a good weekend – the weather was lovely – in fact, Hope was the warmest place in Canada that weekend! – but some hardcore fans were disappointed the town wasn’t as dark and gloomy as it was in the movie. However, the following week, they’ll be pleased to know, was indeed cold and rainy – the landscape became, as Stallone describes it in his First Blood DVD commentary, “melancholy,” allowing Rambo-esque feelings of being lethal to come through.
  • That’s all for now – thanks and enjoy your Sunday,
  • – Curtis
Thanks for the update, Curtis.  The video was well done.  Eagle-eyed SZoners will spot SZoner, Raven in the video! – Craig

Ted Kotcheff: Rambo’s Alternate Ending

On October 15, 2012, Complex Pop Culture posted an interview with Ted Kotcheff, director of First Blood. Here’s a tidbit:

  • We shot the suicide ending, and then Sylvester came up to me and said, “God, what we’ve done to this character, he jumps off cliffs, he’s chased by dogs, he’s shot and he has to sew up his own arm. After all of that, we’re gonna kill him?” One thing about Sly, he always had a popular sense of what audiences wanted to see. I said, “We’ve always conceived of it this way.” He says, “Do you want to come back here three months from now when the distributor asks for a happy ending?” I said no. [Laughs.]

– Craig

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