By: Sean Crose
“I think for me it was the perfect time,” Michael B Jordan said at a Monday press conference to promote his new film, Creed 3. “I finally got to the place in my career where I wanted to tell a story.” Although this is the third time Jordan is playing the gutsy Donny Creed in the eponymously named franchise, it’s the first time he’s found himself sitting in the director’s chair. “I’ve been quietly watching,” he said of the leadup to his transition from star to director/star. “I was kind of like waiting for the right opportunity.”
As the trailer for the new film indicates, Donnie Creed, son of the legendary Apollo Creed and protégé of the legendary Rocky Balboa, is facing a new nemesis, his own past, represented by Anderson Dayne, who is played in the film by Jonathan Majors. Like all films in the Rocky franchise that the Creed series is a part of, Creed 3 is about a lot more than fighting. It’s also, Jordan said, is about “settling debts and being accountable for your actions.” Like many artists, Jordan makes sure his work is informed by his own personality. “This movie has a lot of me in it,” he told the virtually gathered media, “and hopefully a lot of other people, as well.”
He’s a fascinating guy, Jordan. Fascinating, and impressive. Besides acting and directing, the 35 year old also had to be able to make himself convincing as a professional boxer for the film. No easy task, especially when real world fight notables such as Canelo Alvarez and Toney Bellew will be appearing in the film. “I’m a little sick,” Jordan joked about keeping in fighting shape while filming. “I must have a problem because it’s low key torture, but at the same time it’s so much fun.” Ultimately, Jordan feels future rewards trump current inconveniences – much like a professional boxer would.
“Everyday was a struggle, but honestly it was the team of people I had around me,” said Jordan. “Sometimes that is doing two things at one time, or doing three things at one time…it’s extremely hard to do.” Hard as it may have been, Jordan made sure to keep in the spirit of the Rocky universe by having Creed 3 thoroughly rooted in the world of the modern fight game. Hence the appearance of real life legend Canelo Alvarez. “It just didn’t seem like the reality I lived in,” he said of a contemporary boxing movie not having a notable Mexican presence, “so I wanted to incorporate the Mexican culture into this film.”
* Creed 3 will hit theaters on March 3’d.
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