Sylvester Stallone Almost Died In ‘Rocky IV’ Fight With Dolph Lundgren – Hollywood Life

Sylvester Stallone Reveals ‘Rocky IV’ Co-Star Dolph Lundgren Almost Killed Him During Fight Scene

'Rocky IV' was almost Sylvester Stallone's last movie – ever! While revisiting the classic film, Sly revealed that he almost ended 'talking to angels' after throwing hands with Dolph Lundgren.

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Sylvester Stallone almost went down for the count while filming his now-iconic fight scene with Dolph Lundgren while filming 1985’s Rocky IV. “The first thing we shot — my entrance, his entrance and then, the introductions, and then, the fight,” Sylvester, 75, said in The Making of ROCKY VS. DRAGO, posted to Sly’s YouTube page. Apparently, both Sly and Dolph went method for this climactic showdown. “And then, I [get] really injured during the fight,” said Stallone. “I had to be flown into intensive care to California from Canada.”

“I stayed in intensive care for four days,” said Sly. “We decided to have a reshoot. I said [to Dolph], ‘why don’t you just come in the first round and just take me apart. Just unload on me, and I’ll do my best to defend myself. And then, the fight will begin. It shows your actual dominance.’ And that’s what’s in the original movie. Well, [Lundgren] pulverized me. And I didn’t feel it in the moment, but later that night, my heart started to swell. He bruised the pericardial sac, which is usually when the heart hits the chest. Kinda like in a car accident, when your chest hits the steering wheel.”

‘Rocky IV’ (Moviestore/Shutterstock)

“My blood pressure went up to 260, and they thought I was going to be talking to angels,” adds Sly. “Next thing I know, I’m on this emergency, low-altitude flight to St. John’s Hospital. I’m in intensive care surrounded by nuns. Then after that, I had to go back and finish the fight. Crazy, huh?”

Rocky IV captured the Cold War sentiment of the times, with Dolph Lundgren – a Swedish actor – playing the Russian boxer. The legacy of Rocky Vs. Drago is revisited in Creed II, the 2018 sequel that saw Donnie Creed (Michael B. Jordan) take on Drago’s son, Viktor Drago (Florian Munteanu). Ivan Drago – spoiler alert – is the fighter who kills Creed’s father, Apollo Creed (Carl Weathers), in Rocky IV.

Dolph Lundgren, left, poses with Executive Producer Sylvester Stallone, right, on the red carpet at the premiere of DAZN’s “ONE NIGHT: JOSHUA VS. RUIZ,” a documentary film, in 2019 ( Danny Moloshok/Invision/AP/Shutterstock)

To celebrate the film’s anniversary – it turned 35 in 2020, but obviously, the COVID-19 pandemic prevented any birthday celebration – a special “Ultimate Director’s Cut” of the film will be shown in a one-night-only, Fathom in-theatre event on Nov. 11. The event “includes an introduction and Q&A with Sylvester Stallone,” according to the Fathom event’s website.” The viewing will also include “40 minutes of never-before-seen footage” and promises “more intense fight scenes” than the original theatrical cut.