Sports Illustrated recently posted Dan Treadway’s choices for The 12 Greatest Sports Movie Songs of All-Time. Sly had two songs make the cut and here is what Mr. Treadway had to say about them…
Rocky: Gonna Fly Now
The most difficult part of making a list like this was determining how many songs from the Rocky franchise to include. Montages are a fairly critical aspect of more or less every sports film, and Sly Stallone’s movies more or less wrote the book on them. So I would be remiss if I did not at least include the most montagiest of montage songs “Gonna Fly Now.” I honestly can’t listen to any part of this song without imagining Rocky jogging around war-torn ’70s Philly in sweats and a beanie. This song was nominated for an Academy Award in 1977 and — despite Rocky getting the nod for Best Picture and Best Director — it somehow didn’t win. Instead the honors went to the theme from A Star is Born, which I’m pretty sure is the song that’s been playing at my dentist’s office for the past 24 years:
Rocky III: Eye of the Tiger
Believe it or not, we were extremely close to living in an “Eye of the Tiger”-less world. The horror.
Jim Peterick, the guitarist for Survivor, told the story of the song’s origin during an interview with Guitar World:
I came home from shopping one day and heard a message on the answering machine from Sylvester Stallone. At first, I thought it was a joke, but I called the number and sure enough, Stallone answered. He told me that he loved the band and had heard “Poor Man’s Son” and “Take You On A Saturday” from our Premonition album and wanted that same kind of “street” sound for his new movie,Rocky III. He sent us a video montage of the movie and Frankie (Sullivan) and I watched it together. There were scenes of Rocky getting a little “soft” (doing the Visa card commercials) and Mr. T “rising up” with his Mohawk. It was electric. The temp music they used to accompany the montage was “Another One Bites The Dust” by Queen. I remember asking Stallone why he just didn’t use that song for the movie and he said it was because they couldn’t get the publishing rights for it. At that point I just said, “Thank you, Queen!”
We’ve now reached the point where I don’t even know what I think about “Eye of the Tiger.” It’s been used so many times, in so many capacities, that it’s much more than just the lead song from a movie soundtrack — it’s pretty much its own emotion. It’s the musical version of chugging Red Bull while sprinting after a gazelle that you plan on killing with your bare hands.
Sly made the list 6 times! Coming in at…
#1 “Yo Adrian! I did it!” – Rocky Balboa from Rocky II
#14 “I must break you.” – Ivan Drago from Rocky IV
#24 “All I wanna do is go the distance.” – Rocky Balboa from Rocky
#28 “Let’s start building some hurtin’ bombs.” - Duke from Rocky Balboa
#34 “I don’t hate Balboa. I pity the fool.” – Clubber Lang from Rocky III
#44 “You’re gonna eat lightnin’ and you’re gonna crap thunder.” – Mickey from Rocky
MGM is celebrating its 90th anniversary so it only made sense to get one of their all-time biggest stars, Sylvester Stallone on stage for the ceremony.
- Access Hollywood: Sylvester Stallone Helps…
- Variety: MGM’s Leo the Lion…
- Daily Mail: Eye of the Lion…
- UPI.com: MGM Immortalized…
- NewsTalkZB: Sylvester Stallone…
While doing press for Grudge Match, Sly was asked about being inducted into the Boxing Hall of Fame. Sly said that it was an honor and he was a bit embarrassed by being selected since he wasn’t a real boxer. However he was selected because his films helped promote a positive image of the sport. You can imagine what part of Sly’s comments made headlines. - Craig
Here is a video of Sly at the 2008 Zurich Film Festival giving a 41 minute interview that they call the Zurich Film Festival Master Class.
Thanks and a extra credit slip to The Playlist for the Master Class post. - Craig
From the Daily Yomiuri Online:
The Yomiuri Shimbun
For anyone who has ever dreamed of “going the distance,” this year’s Cinema Meets Symphony event on April 6 is the perfect place to do it. The concert will feature music from Sylvester Stallone’s iconic Rocky film series about a rags-to-riches boxer, as performed by the Yomiuri Nippon Symphony Orchestra, Tokyo.
Led by conductor Masahiko Enkoji and popular male vocal group jammin’ Zeb, the concert will be accompanied by some of the series’ most memorable scenes shown on a large screen.
The 1976 John G. Avildsen film launched Stallone’s career, as well as five sequels.
Stallone, who wrote the script in just three days, portrays the title role of Rocky Balboa, a struggling boxer who takes on a heavyweight champion with the support of his girlfriend Adrian. Although Rocky does not win, he manages to last an impressive 15 rounds.
The film won Best Picture at the 49th Academy Awards, and the climactic scene in which Rocky calls out Adrian’s name is one of the most iconic in cinema history.
The film’s theme song, “Gonna Fly Now” by composer Bill Conti, was a big hit and will be performed at the April 6 event.
Michio Hazama, the voice actor who dubbed Stallone’s dialogue in the Japanese films, and Kazutomo Miyamoto, a former pro baseball player, will attend the concert as guests.
Songs from the Rocky soundtrack to be played at the concert:
– “Take You Back,” “Gonna Fly Now,” “Fanfare for Rocky,” “Going the Distance” from Rocky (1976).
– “Conquest” from Rocky II (1979).
– “Eye of the Tiger,” “Adrian” and “Mickey” from Rocky III (1982).
– “The Sweetest Victory,” “Training Montage,” “No Easy Way Out,” “Hearts on Fire,” “Burning Heart” and “Living in America” from Rocky IV (1985).
– “The Measure of a Man” from Rocky V (1990).
From left, writer Alessandro Camon, actor Sylvester Stallone and director Walter Hill pose during the photo call of the movie “Bullet to the Head” at the 7th edition of the Rome International Film Festival
From Yahoo! News. - Craig
ROME, ITALY – NOVEMBER 14: Actor Sylvester Stallone attends the ‘Bullet To The Head’ Press Conference during the 7th Rome Film Festival at the Auditorium Parco Della Musica on November 14, 2012
From Yahoo! News. - Craig
ROME, ITALY – NOVEMBER 14: Sylvester Stallone attends the ‘Bullet To The Head’ premiere during the 7th Rome Film Festival at Lancia Cafe on November 14, 2012 in Rome, Italy.
From Yahoo! News. - Craig