“Rocky” Essential Viewing

Starting on March 7th, once a week, Alec Baldwin will join TCM’s Robert Osborne to introduce classic movies that every film buff should see.  The series is called “The Essentials.” On March 14th, the movie classic that will be shown is “Rocky” and here are some “fun facts” that the web site lists:

MARCH 14  Rocky (1976)
Inspired by the 1975 championship fight between Muhammad Ali and Chuck Weber, Sylvester Stallone wrote the Rocky screenplay.  It was the second highest-grossing film of 1977, behind Star Wars.  Robert Redford, James Caan and Burt Reynolds were considered for the role of “Rocky,” but Stallone refused to sell the rights to the film unless he was the lead.  Bette Midler was offered the role of “Adrian” but turned it down.

You can read the entire piece which includes a mini-interview with Alec Baldwin and the entire year’s listing of the classic movies that they’ll introduce simply by clicking here.

Francavilla’s “Cop Land”

Francesco Francavilla is an extremely talented artist.  His art blog is a regular stop on my internet travels.  I love Francesco’s moody black and white work and was excited to get a copy of his Chiaroscuro sketchbook.  I was even more excited to learn that Francesco draws a free “quick sketch” in every copy ordered through his site.   As you can see from the scan above, he decided to give me his take on Freddy from “Cop Land.”

Chiaroscuro is 70 pages full of Francesco’s black and white work.  It features everything from quick sketches to more detailed work of characters like Hellboy, Batman, Kong, Marv, and so many others.  It arrives securely packaged [which is a major plus knowing my mail carrier] and the last page contains the quick sketch.   Francesco has another sketchbook available.  Schermoscuro is a classic horror movie guide in artbook form.  Francesco is offering the same deal on it and I plan to take him up on it soon.

Rocky & Philly

On February 9, 2009, Mercury News.com posted “Let Freedom Ring: See Philadelphia on a Budget.” They ran the photo above with tips on what to see in the city without spending a fortune.  Of course, this included places made famous by Sly/Rocky.  You can read the whole piece here.

Rocky’s Best Opponents

William Russo, over at the Bleacher Report, takes a look at “The Best and Worst Opponents of Rocky Balboa.” There’s an online poll and right now Apollo and Clubber are at at 30% with Drago close behind at 28%Thunderlips [2%], Tommy Gunn [6%], and Mason Dixon [4%] are lagging way behind.

Click here to read the article and get your vote in!

“Rocky” Honored Again

Former Lightweight boxing champ, Sean O’Grady, was interviewed recently by Ring Sports.  When asked what is his favorite book or movie about boxing replied:

Sly Stallone did a wonderful job on the Rocky Movies. My favorite one is the first. He was terrific and did a great job presenting the struggles. The first Rocky had so much depth to it. Great!

Who can argue with the champ?  You can read the full interview here.