We don’t envy anyone who has to walk in Carl Weathers’ shoes.
Michael B. Jordan will play the son of the man who had the greatest on-screen death in all of sports movies—Apollo Creed in Rocky IV, natch (sorry, Robert De Niro in The Fan)—in the upcoming Creed, which just saw its trailer bow on June 30.
While Jordan was preparing for the role, he trained at Virgil Hunter’s Kings Boxing Gym in Oakland, California. Which is where Amir Khan and Jordan’s longtime friend Andre Berto were also training.
“We have some mutual friends,” Berto said. “We’ve seen each other at events and things like that, just being out. He was telling me about the boxing movie he was doing. We got a chance to hang out in the Bay Area.”
In preparing for the movie, which is scheduled for release on November 25, Jordan worked with Hunter and Andre Ward to get ready. Including the daunting task of going from “in shape” to “in boxing shape.”
Still, Berto said he didn’t have to correct Jordan on his in-ring technique. It was just a matter of putting in the work.
“From him to other guys I know, football players, other celebrities, they go through a training session and they’re really surprised by how much work you have to put in,” Berto said.
“He wanted everything to be as authentic as possible. He took it seriously. He was with some real fighters that he respected. He wanted to show why he took the part. He showed me a few of scenes from the movie. It looked pretty authentic.”
It wasn’t Berto’s only recent brush with celebrity. Swizz Beatz helped put together a free concert June 26 in Port Au Prince, Haiti, with Chris Brown and Lil’ Wayne.
Berto, who has Haitian roots, and Brown are also friends, and Berto had been on Brown to get down to the country for quite some time.
Coupled with the Dominican Republic’s recent deportation of migrant Haitian workers, the time seemed right.
“It was a terrific show. Probably over 100,000 people came out,” Berto said. “He got a lot of love. They literally just built the stage and everything else the night before all the way until the morning. Everything was last-minute, but we were able to make it happen.”