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Remembering Carl Weathers: Highlighting His Acting Career, Life Behind the Scenes, Impact, and More

Remembering Carl Weathers: Highlighting His Acting Career, Life Behind the Scenes, Impact, and More

Carl Weathers, best known for his iconic role as Apollo Creed in Rocky, has passed away. He was 76-years-old. The actor also starred in movies such as Happy Gilmore and Predator, and television series including Chicago Justice, The Mandalorian, Street Justice, and Colony. However, before Weathers hit our screens he had a life behind the scenes as an athlete, husband, father and friend.

Who Was Carl Weathers?

It may seem too obvious, but it’s not as obvious as you think. Yes, he starred as Apollo Creed, but before that, he was a competitive athlete. Weathers was born on Jan. 14, 1948, in New Orleans. Growing up he played a variety of sports including football, boxing, soccer, wrestling, and gymnastics. Carl Weathers attended SDSU (San Diego State University) where he played football, and in 1969 he led the Aztecs to their victory win in the Pasadena Bowl. While attending SDSU, Carl Weathers studied and pursued a degree in theatre arts. However, in 1970 he signed with the Oakland Raiders as a free agent where he played eight games as a linebacker for the NFL for two seasons.

Carl Weathers decided to focus more on his acting career after his stint in his professional football career. He landed small supporting roles in Arthur Marks’ blaxploitation movies such as Bucktown, Friday Foster, and the classic TV series, Good Times. All supporting roles would land him his iconic performances in Predator and leading role in Rocky. Carl Weathers starred alongside Arnold Schwarzenegger in the 1987 sci-fi movie, Predator, as Colonel Al Dillion. Before Predator, Weathers starred alongside Sylvester Stallone in Rocky as Apollo Creed.

Both actors briefly had a disagreement when it came to the Rocky franchise with Stallone asking Weathers for permission to use footage from earlier Rocky films for the sixth movie in 2006, Rocky Balboa. Weathers declined and instead requested an actual part in the film, despite his character, Apollo Creed, dying in Rocky IV. Stallone not honoring his request, decided to hire a lookalike actor to shoot flashback fight sequences. The pair later reconciled, and Carl Weathers allowed Stallone to use his popularity in the Creed sequel series, in which Michael B. Jordan plays Apollo Creed’s son.

Celebrities Paying Tribute and Remember Carl Weathers

Many celebrities are still paying their respects and honoring the actor including co-star Sylvester Stallone who broke his silence on Carl Weathers passing yesterday.

“Today is an incredibly sad day for me,” he said in the emotional clip posted to Instagram. “I mean, I’m so torn up I can’t even tell you. I’m just trying to hold it in because Carl Weathers was such an integral part of my life, my success, everything about it. I give him incredible credit and kudos, because when he walked into that room, and I saw him for the first time, I saw greatness, but I didn’t realize how great.”

He continued in his clip to say, “I never could have accomplished what we did with Rocky without him. He was absolutely brilliant. His voice, his size, his power, his athletic ability, but more importantly, his heart, his soul. It’s a horrible loss. He was magic, and I was so fortunate to be part of his life,” he finished the poignant video. “So, Apollo, keep punching.”

Other actors and co-stars from Law and Order: SVU Mariska Hargitay, Pedro Pascal, Marlon Wayans, and even Michael B. Jordan honored Weathers in social media posts.

Although he never appeared in a film side by side with Weathers, Michael B. Jordan played the son of Apollo Creed in all of the Creed franchises. The actor took to his Instagram story to say “We lost a legend.

Carl Weathers Cause of Death

Weathers’ cause of death revealed that he died naturally of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease and had suffered from heart disease for years. According to Carl Weathers’ family, he passed away peacefully in his sleep in his Los Angeles home. He is survived by his ex-wife, Mary Ann, and their two sons.

“Apollo, keep punching.”

Cal Weathers
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