Sylvester Stallone is dipping his toe into the superhero movie genre with the upcoming release of Samaritan. The film (from Overlord director Julius Avery) will see 73-year-old Stallone playing a famous superhero that the world thinks has vanished, following a massive battle twenty years in the past. When a young boy gets wind that this legendary hero might still be around, he goes looking for him. Now, thanks to TMZ, we have a first look at a photo from the Samaritan set, which may in fact drop a minor SPOILER for the film. That would be the fact that the young boy (Euphoria's Javon "Wanna" Walton) does track down the iconic hero, played by Stallone!
As many Rocky fans will probably point out, Stallone's character in the film (whose name we don't yet know) is dressed in wardrobe that's very much akin to Rocky Balboa's elderly trainer and mentor, Mickey (the late Burgess Meredith). However, Stallone looks like he's still in Rocky-mode, based on the extensive scar and bruising on his face. It's safe to say that this former hero hasn't exactly had a kushy life since disappearing from the superhero scene .
Samaritan is shaping to be a superhero thriller with a dramatic heart weighted by themes like what the responsibilities of an elder generation are to the younger one, or how and why those who try to do good in the world may ultimately become broken and cynical, but still need to keep the fires of hope burning, etc.
Stallone may not be striking the same kind of chords these days, when trying to capitalize on his action star persona (see: The Expendables, Rambo: Last Blood). That said, the other side of Stallone's career has seen the actor tap into his old Rocky persona to turn in some Award-worthy work as Rocky Balboa in the modern Creed spinoff franchise. In fact, Creed brought Stallone his third Oscars and Golden Globes nominations (respectively), and his first win at the 2016 Golden Globes, for "Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role".
Stallone is no stranger to the modern superhero genre, either: he's already broken into the Marvel Cinematic Universe franchise by playing classic Marvel hero Stakar Ogord, in Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 2. Stallone's character was part of an older iteration of the Guardians squad - one that Marvel fans have been hoping will show up elsewhere in the MCU.
Until that happens, there's at least Samaritan to look forward to.
Samaritan will hit theaters on December 11th.