Sylvester Stallone Recalls his Rivalry with Arnold Schwarzenegger

by Hailey Greg
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Sylvester Stallone Recalls his Rivalry with Arnold Schwarzenegger

Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger formerly had a mutual dislike for one another. Since the 1970s, both performers had been on the rise in Hollywood, and as they both became recognized for blockbuster blockbusters in the action genre, the rivalry between the two got fierce. Stallone and Schwarzenegger’s drive to outdo each other at the box office with their new movies reflects their competitive natures and shared ambition to become the genre’s dominant figurehead.

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There have been changes, but Stallone admits that the rivalry between the two stars was more than just friendly competition for box office success. While Stallone acknowledges that there was genuine hostility amongst the cast members, he also thinks that it pushed everyone to give their best performance. The Rocky star is more pleased with the cordial connection he and the Terminator actor now have, and he admits that he now regrets harboring ill will against the actor for so long. According to an interview with Forbes, Stallone explained it like this:

“We had a strong animosity against one another. It’s a little conceited of me to say this, but I feel like we were essentially creating a new genre back then. The rivalry, therefore, because he shares my own competitive mentality and finds it stimulating to challenge others… and I felt it was helpful, but we were still too competitive in real life, which isn’t good for anybody, but we’re now great friends on set.”

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Stallone and Schwarzenegger both felt it was time to put an end to their animosity at some point. They did so formally when Schwarzenegger made a cameo appearance in Stallone’s 2010 film The Expendables; the two would later work together again in 2012’s The Expendables 2 and 2014’s The Expendables 3. They had far more screen time together in the 2013 picture Escape Plan, in which they both co-starred. The two have a long history of spending time together outside of their on-screen roles, most recently reconnecting for Halloween.

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While Sylvester Stallone returns for The Expendables 4, he has said that the film focuses mostly on Jason Statham’s role and that Arnold Schwarzenegger would not be making an appearance. On September 22, 2023, the film will finally hit theaters. Meanwhile, Stallone is also featured in the brand new Paramount+ original series Tulsa King. And Schwarzenegger? Well, he’s now doing vocal work for the FXX cartoon series Little Demon, and he’s set to star in the forthcoming comedy Kung Fury 2.

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