Without Remorse star Michael B. Jordan will return as boxer Adonis Creed in the upcoming threequel, Creed III, with the actor also set to take on directing duties for the first time. Jordan has now explained why he felt that the third installment in the franchise was tailor-made for his directing debut, as well as revealing that he has been given some tops from some of Hollywood’s heaviest hitters.

“It’s the only character that I’m coming back to play three times. It’s a world that I know. I know the process to shoot these movies. I know the character. And I have a clear vision of where I want the world to go. Everything kind of panned out for me to step behind the camera on this one, so I’m running towards it. And definitely a lot of knowledge and a lot of gems of wisdom and tips from everybody-from most recently Denzel [Washington], to Ryan, to David O. Russell, Ben Affleck, Stefano. I’ve been slowly learning. I’m a sponge, so I’m always learning from project to project, and it’s all been slowly preparing me for this moment.”

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So, with Michael B. Jordan knowing the character of Adonis Creed inside out and having been given advice by the likes of Denzel Washington and Ryan Coogler no less, Creed 3 is certainly shaping up to be a knockout premiere performance for the aspiring filmmaker. Directing is something that Jordan has had his eye on for some time, with the actor being hugely inspired watching Black Panther’s Rayn Coogler helm the hard-hitting biographical drama Fruitvale Station back in 2013.

“I’ve always been moving toward it. When you’re acting for twenty-something years, I think over time you start to evolve, your taste buds evolve as well, and you want to do something different. You want another challenge. You start to want to have an opinion and a perspective on how to tell stories. And representation really, really matters. Being so close with Ryan, and watching somebody my age, who looks like me, shoot Fruitvale Station back then, it really gave me the idea that I can do that as well.”

Jordan first appeared in the title role in the first Creed. Released in 2015, the movie continues Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky saga from a whole new perspective, introducing audiences to Adonis, the conflicted son of boxing champion Apollo Creed. Adonis Johnson (Michael B. Jordan) never knew his famous father, who died before Adonis was born. With boxing in his blood, Adonis seeks out Rocky Balboa (Sylvester Stallone) and asks the retired champ to be his trainer. Rocky sees much of Apollo in Adonis, and agrees to mentor him, even as he battles an opponent deadlier than any he has faced in the ring. Creed was critically praised, emerging as a very worthy continuation of the Rocky franchise for the modern age.

The 2018 sequel, Creed 2, continues the Balboa/Drago rivalry, and finds Adonis accepting a challenge from Drago’s son. While not quite as well-received as its predecessor, Creed 2 continued the financial success of the series, making Creed 3 all but inevitable. While details are still largely unknown, it was revealed recently that Stallone’s Rocky Balboa will be absent from the movie, with the Hollywood icon saying, “[Creed 3] will be done but I won’t be in it. Keep punching.”

Jordan has since opened up about Stallone not featuring saying, “Yeah, I think that Sly let it be known that he wasn’t coming back for this one but I think, you know, his essence and his spirit… there’s always going to be a little bit of Rocky within Adonis. But this is a Creed franchise, and we really want to build this story and this world around him moving forward. So, it’s always respect and always a sh*t-ton of love for what he’s built, but we really want to push and navigate Adonis forward and the family that he created. So, hopefully you guys will love what I’m thinking… what we’re cooking up. I think it’s going to be something special.”

Creed 3 is scheduled to be released on November 23, 2022. This comes to us from Esquire.

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