Sylvester Stallone truly changed the action movie genre throughout his lengthy career. Though his most notable role was as Rocky Balboa in the Rocky franchise, which has helped him establish himself as a true icon for the genre, there are many others, with some examples being The Expendables, First Blood, Rambo, and Escape Plan, that cannot be left off the list of most iconic projects by the actor.
Being as successful and talented as he is, one would expect it to be not very difficult for an individual like him to get the role that he wanted. This, however, is not true as Stallone was rejected by multiple big productions that were making mafia films, simply because he wasn’t the right fit.
Sylvester Stallone Wanted To Play A Mobster
Sylvester Stallone has always been very vocal about wanting to take part in a mafia film and play a gangster. In 2021, this dream came true, and the actor played the role of Dwight Manfredi in the drama series, Tulsa King. This was not an easy achievement for him as the actor has revealed in the past, just how much he tried to be a part of projects like these. During an interview with Variety, he revealed that he has always wanted to play a gangster.
“This is a fantasy role,” Stallone said. “I’ve always wanted to play a gangster. Not a cowboy, not an Indian, [but] a gangster. Don’t ask me why, but there’s a romanticism about these kinds of characters.”
He elaborated on this, stating that getting this part in the series was almost a fantasy role for him, which was something he didn’t know how to explain. He confessed that he found that characters like this had a certain kind of romanticism to them, which was something he had completely fallen in for. He then stated that it wasn’t an itch that playing a cowboy or a Native American person could scratch for him, this was exclusive to gangsters only.
Sylvester Stallone Was Not Able To Do This For A Very Long Time
Hearing just how badly Sylvester Stallone wanted to be a part of something like this, it is unfortunate to find out that he was rejected from roles like this time and time again, including from one of the most iconic films in this genre, The Godfather. He revealed to Fox News that he was supposed to play an extra in a wedding of 250 people in the 1972 film. However, he was rejected because he did fit the role that they were trying to cast, stating that he wasn’t looking Italian enough.
“For some reason, gangsters have this aura, and I’ve been left out every time,” Stallone explained. “I remember going in to audition for ‘The Godfather’ as an extra, one of 250 people at the wedding. They said I don’t look Italian enough.”
While this is extremely ironic, because his father was Italian, the actor revealed that he has been left out of the genre time and time again. This is something that makes him quite upset because of just how much he wanted to be a part of films like this. It is also quite interesting to find out that four years after this rejection, the actor starred in Rocky, where he played an Italian-American man and was the film that pushed him to stardom.