Stallone on Corman for EW

On November 13, 2009, posted a piece called: “Roger Corman: Scoreses, Stallone, Sayles and other A-Listers talk about the B-Movie King”. Here’s Sly‘s section:

Sylvester Stallone (before Rocky, the future Italian Stallion costarred in two 1975 Corman productions, Capone and Death Race 2000, pictured) “In ‘72, Lords of Flatbush came out and I thought that was going to be my entrée into movies. But nothing happened. Henry Winkler got the role of the Fonz on Happy Days. I told him I really needed a break and I could be his mentally challenged cousin on the show. So I swung out into obscurity living way way out in the Valley. It was bad. I had to sell my dog. I hadn’t written Rocky yet. So I would read these trade papers and there was a casting ad for Capone. And I got this tiny part. What happened on that set is I finally got an idea of what it was like to be on a serious movie set. Everything was such clock-like precision. When we did Death Race 2000 in 2 1/2 weeks, it shows you it could be done. It was the only unofficial college of the arts where you got to learn filmmaking for free by a master. I guess after Capone, I must have become a part of the Roger Corman family because when Death Race came up, I got the part automatically. The director of Capone said, ‘You did this classy film, you showed that a dramatic side of yourself, Death Race is gonna kill your career, it’s a step backward!’ And I thinking, ‘Excuse me, Capone was a rip-off of The Godather.’ If anything, Death Race was a lot more original than Capone! I was very happy to do it. Roger’s a very sophisticated man. He looked like a senator and yet his films were done in such an assembly-line way. I really enjoyed it because it was the first time I felt like I was really in the big time. If I hadn’t done those parts I probably wouldn’t be here today. That he was a launching pad who allowed a lot of unguided missiles to be launched into space. He provided a forum for a lot of us to grow. We were the seeds and he owned the farm. If you look at those early movies with Jack Nicholson, you can see it — that he was building his rhythm back then. You can see that he had it. He would allow out-of-the-box people like Scorsese and De Niro to flourish. He didn’t go with the status quo. He was a master at spotting talent.”